Following on from the magnificent local government workers’ strike in Scotland last month, another group of workers have taken strike action.
Sports and culture facilities were closed across Glasgow.
Striking Bectu union members held lively pickets at all buildings – which were respected by Unite and the GMB members.
They were given vocal support of beeps and claps from council vans that passed by.
The workers were striking against a below inflation pay offer of 2.85 percent and attempts by management to force them to perform tasks such as banking cash, that they are not paid for.
Last year 2,000 council staff who worked for Glasgow City Council in the culture and sport department were transferred into a private trust – ostensibly to improve access to funding by creating a charitable company.
Workers were given assurances that they would retain the same pay and conditions within this privatised company as their colleagues who remained under Glasgow City Council control.
However, these promises were broken. Not only were workers not offered the same pay rise as council employees, but they were also told that they are going to lose six days of public holidays from their annual leave.
Bectu have been very active in recruiting all workers within the culture and sport facilities, and this undoubtedly added to the success of the action.
Instead of only representing workers directly involved in broadcast or theatre, a long time rep, Charlie, went around every culture and sport building.
He explained to workers why Bectu wanted them in the union, and now janitors and front of office staff are united with long standing members in defending their jobs and conditions.
As Socialist Worker went to press talks continue, and as many strikers said on the picket line, “next time we should be out along with Unison and the other unions striking against the council”.