The government and the press have tried to divide today’s pensioners from future pensioners and workers in the private sector from those in the public sector. But there are strong forces pushing for unity.
Frank Cooper is a former member of the sheet metal workers’ union and the president of the National Pensioners Convention.
He says, “We’re opposing any extension in the pension age for civil service workers, health workers, firefighters or anyone else. We give full support to those who are striking next Tuesday.
“We will stand with the unions and, in the interests of their own members, they need to support the campaign for a better basic state pension for today and in the future.”
Salim Johnson works at Harrods, one of the many private companies where pensions are under attack.
He told Socialist Worker, “It’s the ‘top people’s store’ which pays rock bottom wages. I work hard in the warehouse and am lucky to clear £300 a week.
“This is a store which is worth millions and millions. It is astounding that they are claiming that they cannot afford to fund pensions.
“I’m right behind the strikers in local government. If they win, it shows we can all win.”