Pensions strikes in Scotland

Submitted by Matthew on 7 March, 2012 - 10:15

NHS workers in Scotland will begin rolling strikes from 12 March as part of the ongoing battle over pensions.

Workers will strike on a local basis, with workers at the Ayrshire Central Hospital taking part in the first wave and further local action in Edinburgh, Lanarkshire and Glasgow expected later in the month.

The strikes will attempt to reverse a Scottish Government decision to impose a 2.4% increase in employee contributions from 1 April.

Writing on the UnionNews website, Tom Waterson, the chair of Unison Scotland’s Health Committee, said “Our members have been demanding action on this increase.

“We had been hoping to persuade the government to talk to us before now about the proposed increase, because SNP ministers have said repeatedly they think the Coalition’s pensions proposals are wrong.

“So it’s ridiculous that they won’t come to speak to us about this issue now.”

Scottish teachers’ union EIS is urging its members to vote yes in a consultative ballot on whether to take further strike action on pensions on 28 March.

The ballot, which closes on 15 March, could see EIS join the Public and Commercial Services union (PCS), the National Union of Teachers (NUT) and University and College Union (UCU) members in further education and post-92 universities in the third day of national actions in the pensions battle. These unions are also conducting consultative ballots on whether to strike, closing on 16, 15 and 13 March respectively. Welsh teachers’ union UCAC has also rejected the government’s “final” pensions offer but has not yet declared an intention to strike.

As well as campaigning for yes votes in consultative ballots for action on 28 March, activists must fight for that action to be made part of an ongoing, rolling and escalating programme of action.

• Notts NUT resolution proposing plan for rolling action here

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