Socialist Worker

‘This is a back door wage cut’

Issue No. 1990

Some 100 council workers, many from manual sections, demonstrated in Swansea last week to kick off the strike ballot.

Danny Bowles from Morriston has worked for Swansea council for three years. “I think the attacks on our pensions are absolutely disgusting,” he said.

“Our pension is wages in lieu. This is a pay cut through the back door and I don’t think staff have woken up to this yet. Once people do, there will be a lot of anger. I think the ballot will be a yes and we will go on strike.”

Swansea Labour councillor David Phillips has broken ranks and challenged his colleagues in Westminster to change their plans over pensions.

“The government is wrong. What they are proposing is immoral and totally unjustifiable,” he said.

Phillips is a former chair of the local pension fund and a member of the national pension group that advises deputy prime minister John Prescott.

Geoff Burns of the GMB union said, “This is larceny on a grand scale. We are not going to tolerate the theft of our deferred wages – our pensions.”

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