Socialist Worker

Striking homelessness caseworkers set for protest at Glasgow City Council

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2458

Workers in Glasgow listen to sacked Unison rep Robert ODonnell

Workers in Glasgow listen to sacked Unison rep Robert O'Donnell (Pic: Socialist Worker)


Unison union activists from across Britain were set to protest at Glasgow City Council headquarters on Thursday of this week.

Homelessness caseworkers, who have been on all-out strike for two and a half months, called the demo. 

They demand to be paid equal to colleagues with the same responsibilities and won’t accept divisive offers.

Striker Yasmin told Socialist Worker, “We came out together and we all go back together—no exceptions.”

Council leaders were only forced to act after Unison threatened to cut funding to Glasgow Labour Party, which controls the council.

But while conceding the strikers should be paid more, the council insists there has to be a cost. An offer to regrade most, but not all, caseworkers would be funded with less money.

And there is a further sting in the tail. Bosses want to re-interview strikers to check they are “competent”.

A mass meeting last week didn’t even bother taking a vote on the proposal. Opposition was resoundingly clear.

Robert ODonnell, a Unison rep sacked by the SECC conference venue

Robert O'Donnell, a Unison rep sacked by the SECC conference venue (Pic: Socialist Worker)


The protest will also demand the reversal of a decision by conference venue SECC to uphold the sacking of Unison rep Robert O’Donnell.

Robert told Socialist Worker the sacking centres on “an alleged unwitnessed incident with my supervisor”. 

Unison branch officer Scott Donohoe believes “the dismissal relates to Robert’s role as a trade union activist”.

SECC is 91 percent owned by the Labour-run council but refuses to recognise the union. 

Unison and other unions have held their 2015 annual conferences at SECC.

Delegates at Unison’s local government conference (see page 16) cut their agenda short and walked out of the venue in protest last Sunday. 

And the union has warned bosses at SECC that it could be struck off its approved list of conference venues. 

Join the protest Thu 18 Jun, 5.45pm, Glasgow City Chambers, George Square.
Donate to the strike fund: Unity Bank, Sort code 08-60-01, Account number 20275792, Account name “Industrial Action—Income”

 


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