Aviation workers reject pay deals

Submitted by Matthew on 20 July, 2011 - 12:30

On 27 June, NATS, the UK’s main provider of air traffic services, received notification of rejection of the pay deals offered to two sections of its workforce.

Prospect ATSS, which represents engineers, and PCS, the union for operational assistants and administrative grades, returned ballots rejecting their offers by 88% and 79% majorities respectively, on turnouts of over 75%. The offers made consisted of 4% for year one (Jan 2011), followed by RPI capped at 4.5% in year 2, with significant strings attached for both groups.

Cuts in jobs and benefits go hand in hand

Submitted by Matthew on 3 July, 2011 - 1:26

According to a report by the National Audit Office, the Department for Work and Pensions "will have to make rapid progress in reorganising the way it operates if it is to meet its target of cutting costs by £20 billion in four years while achieving substantial reform of the welfare system."

Organising for 30 June

Submitted by Matthew on 22 June, 2011 - 12:17

Croydon: teachers and students uniting

By a Croydon teacher and South London AWL member

I got the news of the NUT and ATL [teachers’ unions] ballot results from an email at 3.10 on Tuesday 14 June. At 3.15pm I walked out of my classroom to find a group of very excited year 10s shouting “teachers are going on strike!”

The teacher who runs the art club got the kids to help make banners today, some of the slogans (which the kids chose) included “no pension, no work” and “we won’t clean up your mess”.

Socialist Party: hot air on pensions

Submitted by Matthew on 15 June, 2011 - 10:49

In his attack on the AWL (see www.workersliberty.org/ libya) Peter Taaffe says, “the successful experiences of the [civil service union] PCS in a series of industrial struggles, including in the pensions battle of 2005, which along with other ultra-lefts the AWL heavily criticised at the time.”

Before the 2005 pensions deal agreed by PCS, people joining the civil service had the right to retire at 60. People joining after it now have to work to 65 to get the same pension. How is that not a step backwards? Why is it “ultra-left” to criticise such a deal?

PCS needs a strategy to win Matthew Wed, 05/25/2011 - 12:28

PCS conference has agreed that members will be balloted over jobs, pensions, redundancy payouts and pay. This ballot begins immediately, the union hoping that if members vote yes, then it will take joint strike action with the NUT on 30 June.

The bulk of delegates at conference agreed that the ballot should begin straightaway even though in many areas this will mean mobilising members from a standing start but the prospect of co-coordinating action with NUT is too important to miss.

Organise for 30 June!

Submitted by martin on 10 May, 2011 - 7:52

On Tuesday 17 May members of the National Union of Teachers will begin balloting on strikes against the government's plans to increase their pension contributions, raise their pension age, and cut their pensions.

The government plans affect all public service workers - in similar, though slightly varying ways. They go together with the government's plans to increase the age for the state pension, and are setting the frame for further trashing of what pension provision remains in the private sector.

Teachers, lecturers, civil servants to strike together AWL Wed, 05/04/2011 - 14:11

Unions representing over 800,000 teachers, lecturers and civil servants are set to take national strike action on 30 June against Government plans to radically attack their pensions.

The government has already switched the measure for annual increases for public sector pensions from the Retail Price Index (RPI) to the generally lower rate, the Consumer Price Index (CPI). A pension currently worth £10,000 a year will, by 2016, be worth £800 less than it would be on RPI.

PCS: don't leave jobs as a makeweight issue Matthew Wed, 05/04/2011 - 14:03

The national executive of the civil service union PCS will put an emergency motion to its conference on 18-20 May, seeking permission to ballot members over pensions, jobs and pay.

Delegates to the PCS conference are used to the Executive using the device of an emergency motion (on non-emergency matters) to dominate conference proceedings and to bypass and ignore normal branch motions put up in the normal manner.

That said, it is correct that members should be balloted on pensions, jobs and pay, particularly when we can co-ordinate such action with other unions.

30 June and after

Submitted by Matthew on 4 May, 2011 - 12:14

Teachers, civil servants, and other workers are set to strike on 30 June against the coalition government’s increases in pension contributions, cuts in pension provision, and raising of the pension age.

At Easter (22-26 April) the National Union of Teachers conference voted to ballot union members for a series of strikes. Other big public service union conferences are coming up soon. The civil service union PCS meets in Brighton on 16-20 May. Its Executive has already decided to ballot members on strike action, soon enough for them to join NUT on 30 June.