Thursday 16 June 2011

Southwark united for action on June 30

I was pleased to be able to go straight from the NUT Executive to report our decision to call strike action on June 30 at a joint public meeting held in Southwark last night.

I shared the platform with speakers from the UCU, PCS and the local Pensioners' Action Group.

Zita Holbourne from the PCS reported their vote in support of action. They will be joining with us in a day's strike on June 30, followed by a month's overtime ban in their dispute over civil service pensions, pay and jobs.

Doris, a retired teacher, called for unions to link-up with those strugggling on a state pension of just £102 per week - and also hit by the change from RPI to CPI indexation.

Sean Vernell from UCU pointed out that the pensions of Senior Directors were on average £333,000 a year - compared to just £5,000 for a public-sector worker.

I summed up the meeting by calling for all present to build for the maximum turnout on June 30, and for those unions not yet balloted to put maximum pressure on their leaderships to be joining us in even wider strike action in the Autumn. A 'Classroom Teacher' parents' leaflet that I had distributed went down well - to get out the message that our fight on pensions is part of a wider fight against cuts.

The mood of all those present was firm and determined. If this is repeated across London, then we can be confident of a huge show of strength - backed by RMT action aginst victimisation of a tubeworker as well as possible protest action by Prison Officers - on June 30.

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