Socialist Worker

Solidarity for Museum Wales strikers as bosses get nasty

by Nick Clark
Issue No. 2506

Museum Wales strikers and supporters at PCS conference

Museum Wales strikers and supporters at PCS conference (Pic: Socialist Worker)


Bosses at National Museum Wales are using dirty tricks to undermine an all-out strike and delay a decision that could end the dispute.

Workers have been on strike for more than four weeks. They have had as much as £1,000 more than they were expecting docked from their pay since beginning their indefinite action.

PCS union branch secretary and striking gallery assistant Hannah Lawson told Socialist Worker she was “disappointed” that bosses took the extra money “without warning.”

She said, “Management have changed the date of our pay rate cut-off from its usual date by about a week.

“Most strikers have lost a week’s pay—but some have had £1,000 deducted.”

The loss in strike pay comes as museum trustees have dragged out the strike.

Workers from museum sites across Wales walked out on 28 April after more than two years fighting plans to scrap their weekend premiums.

Plans

These plans could see some low paid workers lose as much as £3,000 a year.

The strike looked as if it could be nearing an end after Welsh economy minister Ken Skates intervened two weeks ago.

A deal was brokered which PCS Wales said was “virtually guaranteed” to be accepted by strikers.

But museum bosses have been silent since taking the deal back to their board of trustees on Wednesday of last week.

In a statement PCS Wales secretary Shavanah Taj said the strikers were “prepared to stay out on strike for as long as it takes”.

Strikers were boosted by the huge solidarity and standing ovations they received at visits to PCS and Wales TUC conferences last week.

Hannah spoke to the PCS conference in Brighton. She said solidarity from PCS branches and elsewhere “has really strengthened us and given us the morale to keep going”.

Strikers collected more than £800 for the strike fund in Brighton. And they have raised well over £10,000 from collections and solidarity visits across Britain.

But after the latest attack on pay, and with bosses stalling, the solidarity must keep coming.

Museum workers in Scotland were set to hold a solidarity fundraiser for the strikers following their own victory over a similar pay attack earlier this year.

And supporters in London plan a fundraising event on Friday of next week—while those in Swansea plan one next Wednesday.

Everyone can do something to help the strikers keep going—and score a victory over bullying bosses.

Donate to the strike fund: Bank: Unity Trust Bank Account name: PCS Amgueddfa Cymru 107006 Branch Hardship Fund Account number: 20364700 Sort code: 60-83-01. Or donate online

Invite a striker to speak at your branch. Email branch secretary Peter Hill at dennishill20@hotmail.com


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