Socialist Worker

Teaching assistants keep up action against pay cuts in Derby and Durham

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2542

Teaching assistants in Durham

Teaching assistants in Durham (Pic: Durham TAs value us campaign)


Derby teaching assistants (TAs) struck on Monday and Tuesday and held a 24-hour vigil outside the city council. They have served notice for another five-day strike starting next Monday.

The Unison union members are fighting a 25 percent pay cut from the Labour-run authority.

Derby Unison branch secretary Nicole Berrisford said, “We’re not going away, we’re not giving up.”

Meanwhile TAs in Durham began a week-long series of protests outside the council’s headquarters as frustration builds at the slow pace of talks.

Unison officials suspended action last December after four days of strikes forced the council to suspend plans to sack and rehire the TAs.

Many TAs disagreed with suspending strikes and think talks are being dragged out until after council elections.

TA Kate was “keeping an open mind” but said the ongoing review of the roles of TAs showed that council bosses “hadn’t a clue”.

TAs have called a national solidarity demo in Durham on Saturday 25 March.


Will SNP satisfy Glasgow council strikers?

The leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) group of Glasgow councillors vowed to meet a key demand of workers if elected in May.

Susan Aitken promised to level up the conditions of workers at council-owned firms to those of directly employed council workers.

She made the pledge to more than 250 workers during a hustings at the AGM of the Unison union branch.

Unison has fought several disputes over unequal conditions in the council’s workforce. Workers must hold the SNP to its word if it ousts Labour in May.

The branch also gave its support to the anti-racism march in Glasgow on Saturday 18 March.


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