Socialist Worker

Durham teaching assistants receive boost from Corbyn

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2515

A mass meeting in support of the teaching assistants in June

A mass meeting in support of the teaching assistants in June (Pic: MadeinTyneandWear)


Teaching assistants (TAs) in Durham fighting the Labour council’s plans to slash their pay by 23 percent received a boost from Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn last week.

The TAs met Corbyn at the Durham Miners’ Gala last month. Hundreds of them had mobilised for the event to build their campaign.

Corbyn released a statement pledging “full support” for their fight. While it stopped short of directly criticising the Labour council it will increase the pressure on it.

He said he “will be standing shoulder to shoulder with Unison’s campaign to end the imposition of term time only pay.”

School support staff such as TAs have no national agreement.

At Unison’s annual conference in June delegates passed policy to fight for an end to term time pay in schools.

Around 700 TAs protested at the council’s headquarters in Durham last week.

Many want their Unison union to bring them out on strike early in the new term but feel frustrated at the lack of information coming from the officials.

The union should ballot them now.


Glasgow council braced for strikes

Around 130 workers at Community Safety Glasgow (CSG) are set to ballot for strikes in a dispute over unsocial hours payments.

The workers are members of the Unison, Unite and GMB unions.

CSG is owned by the Labour-run Glasgow City Council.

Their ballot follows an average nine to one vote for action in consultative ballots across the unions.

Meanwhile school janitors employed by another “arms length” council firm, Cordia, met last Sunday to discuss the next steps in their long-running campaign over pay.

The Unison members were expected to announce more action soon in the new school term.


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