The Tories have scrapped the School Support Staff Negotiating Body (SSSNB), set up to negotiate pay and conditions for around 500,000 workers in England.
This is dangerous. In areas with weak union organisation, employers can pick off groups of workers to attack.
As education secretary Michael Gove put it, the body did “not fit well with the government’s priorities for greater deregulation of the pay and conditions arrangements for the school workforce.”
The GMB union called the move “stealing fair pay” from workers.
The Unison union said the it will consult members on industrial action “as a matter of urgency”.
The leaders of the unions had hoped that the SSSNB would absolve them of responsibility for negotiating on behalf of school workers. Now, responsibility is back with them.
Ian Murch, national treasurer for the NUT union, told Socialist Worker that the move was “the first stage in the Tories’ plan to wind down central determination of pay and conditions.
“Gove has told the body that deals with teachers’ pay that he will ask it to ‘reduce the rigidity of the existing pay and conditions framework’.
“Teachers’ unions have to fight this deregulation.”