Coventry council workers are organising a rally on Saturday 23 July to publicise and discuss their dispute with the city council over its imposition of a “single status” pay and conditions deal.
Our branch of the Unison union donated £1,000 to the Coventry dispute after hearing a striker address our committee.
We also agreed to provide a coach to take members to the rally, and to send a motion to this Saturday’s Unison regional council.
The single status deal is meant to tackle the important issue of equal pay. But in Coventry and many other local government branches it is being used as an excuse to attack pay and conditions.
What we need is full government funding for single status. Coventry is at the forefront of the fight and Unison branches need to support this important dispute. Branches should invite speakers, arrange collections and support the rally on 23 July.
Dave Buckley, Birmingham Unison (personal capacity)
Single status rally, Saturday 23 July, Warwick Road United Reformed Church, Coventry. Go to www.coventryunison.co.uk for more details
Coaches to the rally have been organised from London, Birmingham, Manchester and Newcastle. Call 020 7819 1175 for details.
Up to 700 council workers in Middlesbrough marched through the town centre on Monday of this week to protest against massive wage cuts.
The demonstration included nursery nurses, street cleaners and grave diggers. They were protesting against an imposed pay deal that will see one in five workers lose money — some losing as much as 30 percent.
One nursery nurse told a local newspaper that she was facing a £3,500 wage cut after working at James Cook University Hospital for 16 years. “We shed blood, sweat and tears for our jobs. We are being devalued and demoralised,” she said.
Other workers contrasted their situation with that of senior managers in Middlesbrough council, who earn £50,000 or more a year.
Unions are set to continue negotiating with the council. Legal and industrial action are both under consideration.