Socialist Worker

Tree campaigners united with the union branches

by Phil Turner
Issue No. 2591

Protesters protect trees in Sheffield

Protesters protect trees in Sheffield (Pic: Luis Arroyd photography)

Trees campaign protesters stormed into Sheffield council chamber on Wednesday of last week calling for a £2.2 billion PFI contract to be scrapped.

The occupation, by members of Sheffield Save Our Trees Action Groups (Stag), lasted until the early hours and received widespread support.

During a heated three-hour council budget meeting, activists unfurled a banner from the public gallery demanding to see the Streets Ahead contract with multinational Amey—which is shrouded in secrecy.


The tree-felling, being carried out for Amey by private contractor Acorn, was stopped after protests by people living on Meersbrook Park Road.

Anger at the PFI deal has spilled over into other council services run Amey.

A protest outside the town hall saw tree campaigners joined by Amey workers from the GMB and Unison unions fighting pay and job cuts.

Workers in the street cleaning and grounds maintenance sections are demanding their services be taken back in-house.

One worker said, “We see the Amey trees PFI deal and what Amey are trying to do to us as about the same issue—privatisation and making profits at the expense of the people.”

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Tue 13 Feb 2018, 15:30 GMT
Issue No. 2591
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