Socialist Worker

Care workers rattle council bosses by escalating strike

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2391

Workers vote for more strikes at a mass meeting in Glasgow

Workers vote for more strikes at a mass meeting in Glasgow


 

Council care workers in Glasgow residential homes voted unanimously for another three 72-hour strikes at the end of a three-day strike last week.

The Unison union members are battling council bosses’ imposition of longer shifts, pay cuts of up to £1,500 a year and enforced new job roles that will downgrade staff.

At a strikers’ mass meeting one worker argued, “We have to keep up the pressure on the council—we’re not wilting away, we’re strong.” 

Another added, “We have to hit them where it hurts and get a fair deal for every residential worker.”

One senior Unison residential steward told Socialist Worker, “Management are rattled. Their latest proposal was insulting so we basically told them to piss off and went on strike again.

“It’s now seven days and not one person has wavered. More staff have come out again over the weekend, including some who haven’t been on strike before.”

Support has poured in from across the country including large donations to the strike fund. Glasgow Health Unison branch donated £10,000.

The chair of Glasgow Trades Council has written to every councillor in the city condemning the Labour-run council’s “anti-trade union tactics”.

Leaflets explaining the strike to residents’ families have gone down well.

“Some took our leaflets to photocopy them for other members of their family and to take to their MSPs and councillors,” the Unison steward said.

Workers are asking questions about staffing levels on the new shifts and the impact on residents’ care. Unison believes they “are unsafe for staff and residents alike”.

Workers argue they cannot tend to the most basic needs, or safeguard residents because the staff to resident ratio is not good enough.

One striker told Socialist Worker, “Managers in head office don’t care what might happen to residents when there are too few workers to care for them properly, but we do.”

Rush messages of support and donations to Glasgow City Unison,  84 Bell Street, Glasgow G1 1LQ enquiries@glasgowcityunison.co.uk

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