STRIKING COUNCIL workers in Liverpool’s child social work and emergency duty teams appealed for solidarity from other trade unionists as their bitter all-out industrial dispute entered a critical phase at the start of this week.
Last week the council claimed that it had reached an agreement with the GMB union over job descriptions and staffing. It claimed this laid the basis for a settlement with Unison as well.
But the GMB immediately wrote to the council denying any deal had been done.
Unison’s national industrial action committee was considering the strike as Socialist Worker went to press. The Unison leadership should call for full support, especially over Christmas.
“We’re desperate for money and support,” one striker told Socialist Worker. “It’s been a long dispute—15 weeks now—and virtually nobody’s gone back.”
Unison reps involved in the strike stress the need for rank and file union members to keep up the pressure on their branches and regions to back the strikers, especially in the North West Region.
Council workers say the strike is beginning to bite hard. “The system is grinding to a halt, even though management won’t admit it,” one union rep told Socialist Worker.
“The strike is still solid, and we’re still determined.”
Strikers called another lobby of the Liberal Democrat controlled council this week.
Last week the council asked to go to the Acas conciliation service to settle the dispute, the first time such a request has been made.
Messages of support and donations to Liverpool Unison, Cotton Exchange Building, Bixteth Street, Liverpool L3 9JR.