Socialist Worker

Four steps to fight the pay freeze

Issue No. 2051

  1. Leaflet your workplace over pay. Unison has produced leaflets that argue for decent pay for health workers and local government workers.

    Post Worker, the rank and file group in the CWU union, produces a regular newspaper that contains reports from offices across the country. Phone 07871 927 008.

    Why not ensure that your local reps get copies to distribute to their workmates?

    Leafleting is a first step to help you inform your colleagues and other local trade unionists that their unions are preparing for action.

    It is also an excellent opportunity to recruit to the union.

  2. Hold workplace meetings over pay. Bringing people together makes everyone feel stronger – and therefore more capable of challenging the bosses and the government over pay.

    They also provide an occasion where any fears and doubts can be addressed.

    You could invite trade unionists from other workplaces to help develop solidarity between different groups.

  3. Set up local public meetings for all workers who are battling over pay. Here you can start to plan solidarity work and learn from the experiences of others.

    You can also ensure that the first group of workers to join the battle are well supported by those who will follow.

    Organising For Fighting Unions ( has news on the pay revolt.

  4. Keep the pressure on your union leaders. Many unions have conference policy which instructs the executive to face up to the government over pay.

    But many union leaders are nervous about confronting Gordon Brown, especially early in his premiership.

    It is essential that union leaders feel pressure from the rank and file to ensure that they do not give up the fight over pay.

    Pass motions to this effect at your branch and ensure that they are sent to your union’s regional and head offices.

    You can also lobby national meetings where pay is to be discussed.

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