Socialist Worker

Manchester community health workers strike against cuts

Issue No. 2036

Over 240 health workers at Manchester Community and Mental Health trust were preparing for strike action this week.

The workers who are mental health nurses, occupational therapists and community nurses, are protesting against a package of cuts that will decimate the service they provide and lead to many job losses.

'The mood for the strike is absolutely solid,' Karen Reissmann, Unison union branch secretary, told Socialist Worker.

'The board of our trust met on Wednesday of last week and said that despite the objections, the cuts were going ahead – though they did not have the nerve to take a vote on the issue.'

'By contrast our mass meeting had over 90 members at it.

'We reaffirmed our commitment to strike this Wednesday 31 January.

'We are also committed to a further five days of action.

'There will be one-day strikes on 7 and 14 February to be followed by a three-day strike starting on 20 February.

'Workers at the trust were particularly happy about the prospect of striking on the same day as thousands of civil service workers locally and Amicus union members at IT company Fujitsu.

'People here are really excited by the prospect of holding a joint rally with other people who are on strike.

'My branch has made T-shirts for the rally that say, 'Save the NHS' and we plan to walk into the rally together.

'It's good to know that we are not fighting on our own. The battle for public services needs all of us to stand together.'

Messages of support to karen@reissmann.fsnet.co.uk or to the union office, 70 Manchester Rd, Chorlton, Manchester M21 9UN


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