Hundreds of striking home care workers marched through snow in Birmingham on Saturday declaring they would fight to defend their jobs and the service they provide.
The Unison union members marched through the city centre chanting, “Home care workers, here to stay!” The workers struck between 11am and 2.30pm and plan to walk out again on Tuesday 6 February.
The Labour-led council wants to slash the number of home carers by 40 percent.
The home enablement team visit people who have recently been discharged from hospital, and work with them to develop the abilities for independent living.
Council changes would also introduce a split shift rota system. The service is currently provided 7am-10pm. The changes would mean carers work 7am-10am, 12-2pm and 4-10pm.
This would mean effectively working 16 hours but only getting paid for 11.
Mandy has been a home carer for 16 years. She told Socialist Worker, “People need the quality service we deliver.
“These changes would have a huge impact. It would mean you can’t take your kids to school or tuck them in bed at night.”
Tracey Mooney, the Birmingham branch Unison deputy secretary explained some of the challenges of being a lone worker.