Leaflets, posters, and fliers designed to be given out in the run-up to and the day of the three-quater million strong public sector strike on June 30th 2011. Most were designed by SolFed (and especially members in the North London Local), with two published by the IWW.
As around 750,000 public sector workers took strike action, Liverpool Solidarity Federation offered our support to picket lines around Bootle as well as joining a march and rally in the City Centre. We found that strike action was strongly supported, not just by the staff walking out but by the broader constituency of those affected by and fighting the cuts.
On Tuesday 7th and Wednesday 8th June, PCS members in HM Revenue & Customs staged a series of walkouts. This was in opposition to a harsh new sickness policy being imposed upon staff. Members of Liverpool Solidarity Federation were amongst those who turned up on the picket lines to show support.
The action took the form of an hour's walkout at 4pm on Tuesday, a 10am "walk-in" on Wednesday, and a two-hour lunchtime walkout on the same day. The strikes took place across the country, with a high degree of support and disruption reported in most places. On Merseyside, the action was concentrated in the City Centre and in Bootle - both of which are home to a high number of government offices.
This past Monday saw well over a-hundred radical workers and student activists gather in the Marchmont Community Centre to hold a 'public assembly' on the upcoming June 30th strikes.
Last night, Saturday the 21st of May, saw upwards of thirty people attend a public meeting on the upcoming June 30th education and civil service strikes. Hosted by the North London Solidarity Federation, the meeting was very practically focused. Attendees talked about their particular workplace or uni situation and highlighted strategies and tactics which have helped them to organize at work and/or begin talking to their co-workers or fellow students about June 30th and why they shouldn't cross picket lines. We discussed what sorts of momentum-building actions could be undertaken in the run-up to June 30th that will ensure education workers and students are not only aware of the issues but feel empowered and confident enough take strike action.
It is now a near certainty that we will see coordinated public sector strike action within the next couple of months. Solidarity Federation - which has members in the public sector unions which will be striking - stands in support of all workers acting to defend their jobs and the services those jobs provide to working class people.
UCU have already balloted. PCS is putting an emergency motion to its conference in May. The NUT sought permission to ballot at its recent conference. Even the moderate ATL already has a mandate to ask members for strike action. The only question now is how events unfold once the ball gets rolling.
Three CSL workers were sacked before xmas, for whistle-blowing. They had the cheek to expose their employer's inefficiency and poor level of service in its privatised housing benefits operations.
CSL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu - the privatised housing benefits company. London Borough of Newham contracted out most of its Housing Benefit (HB) service to CSL in June 1999.
May 2010 will see a general election where the main parties will compete with each other in promising cuts in public expenditure and attacks on public sector workers pay and conditions.
This offensive is egged on by the media and parts of it are fast becoming accepted wisdom - even if the supposed facts underpinning this version of events are wrong.
In 1997, councils across Britain came to an agreement with unions to undertake ‘Single Status’ job evaluations to end the discrepancies between manual and white collar jobs. Parallel to this, claims made about the historic pay discrepancies between traditionally male and traditionally female jobs were won at various Employment Tribunals. Historically, workers in female dominated jobs (such as those working around childcare) have been paid significantly less than those in jobs usually seen as ‘men’s work’, such as refuse collection.
Since the Equal Pay Act in 1970 these pay discrepancies had been open to legal challenge, but Single Status was supposed to be an across the board solution that would see every job within the councils evaluated and regarded equally based on the content of the job. In theory, this was of course a good thing.