Socialist Worker

Walkout in Wigan over council cuts

Issue No. 2403

More than 300 workers at Wigan’s Labour-run council are set to walk out on Thursday of this week over a cut to their essential car users’ allowance. 

The workers are members of the Unison union.

Negotiations between council management and the union have broken down. For the last two weeks workers have refused to use their own cars for council business.

The action includes social workers, street lighting engineers and environmental health officers.

The cut to workers’ car allowance amounts to nearly £1,000 a year pay cut. Wigan Unison member Catherine Croston told Socialist Worker, “After years of pay freezes, pay cuts and below-inflation pay rises this was the last straw.

“We are absolutely furious that a Labour council is passing Tory cuts on to us. 

“We provide vital services for the people of Wigan and this is how we are treated. 

“We cannot do our jobs without our cars.”

Senior Unison social care steward Dave Lowe said, “The car boycott is solid, but members understand that a boycott on its own is not sufficient to force the council to reverse its decision. 

“What we need are more strikes. I believe this is possible—there is definitely a mood to fight.”

Send messages of solidarity to the council workers

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Article information

Tue 13 May 2014, 17:48 BST
Issue No. 2403
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