Socialist Worker

Strikes called at Tate after bosses cut hundreds of jobs

Issue No. 2717

Tate workers on a protest for jobs

Tate workers on a protest for jobs (Pic: Floyd Codlin)


Over 100 workers at the Tate galleries in London are set to strike next week over job cuts.

PCS union members plan to walk out on Tuesday 18, Wednesday 19, Friday 21 and Saturday 22 August.

They are fighting around 200 redundancies.

In a ballot workers voted 88 percent Yes for strikes on a 79 percent turnout.

Tate Commerce, which says, “Our role is to maximise profits,” operates retail, catering and publishing services across the four galleries in London, Liverpool and St Ives.

It notified staff in mid-June of restructuring plans aimed at cutting £1 million.

Despite these cuts, the Tate has confirmed that it has requested an additional 18 staff, from its contractor Securitas, to cover the Steve McQueen exhibition.

The union says, “While the Tate says these are only ‘short-term roles’ this will come as little comfort to those staff who are imminently facing the axe.

“The redundancies are unnecessary.

“We are asking for just 10 percent of the expected government bailout of the gallery to save hundreds of jobs.

“If the financial situation at the gallery is so dire, why are their senior executives still earning eye watering salaries way over £100,000?”

  • Join post-picket protests from 11.30am on 18 and 22August at Tate Modern and 21 August at Tate Britain.
  • Donate to the strike fund at bit.ly/TateStrike

The PCS union launched a consultative ballot on Monday of its Southbank Centre members in London. The employer has confirmed it will not pay its normal redundancy terms, meaning hundreds of staff will lose out on thousands of pounds.


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Tue 11 Aug 2020, 10:06 BST
Issue No. 2717
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