Socialist Worker

Nursery nurses

by Esme Choonara
Issue No. 1903

DESPITE THE financial hardship of nearly three months on strike, the resolve of the nursery nurses was still strong at the start of this week. Over 300 strikers in Glasgow demonstrated outside one of the main council buildings on Thursday of last week. A group of nursery nurses hung a banner from the roof of the car park opposite the building saying "Support your nursery nurses".

Edinburgh strikers have continued regular protests outside the Scottish Parliament and council offices. After a huge rejection of the council's offer last week, they are now balloting on an improved offer.

Strikers in Fife and Renfrewshire recently rejected the latest offer from their council. The Renfrewshire offer would actually have meant some nursery nurses being worse off!

Carolyn Leckie from the Scottish Socialist Party (SSP) became the first MSP to be thrown out of the Scottish Parliament last week after an argument with George Reid, the presiding officer, who tried to stop her raising a point of order about the nursery nurses' strike.

Carolyn was expelled from the parliament and marched out defiantly with the other five SSP MSPs to join 60 striking nursery nurses lobbying outside the parliament.

Over £1,800 was collected for the strikers at the cup final in Glasgow on Saturday. New collections are coming in all the time. One teacher collected over £240 in her first collection last week, and staff have pledged to give every week that the strike continues. Over £60 was collected outside Wester Hailes Library.

Margaret Grady, from Holmlea Nursery in Glasgow, travelled as part of a delegation to South Wales last week. "We went to three meetings in Swansea and at each of them the sense of solidarity was almost tangible. We were given donations, valuable information on union procedures and the promise of further support during our struggle," she said.

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Thu 27 May 2004, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1903
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