Low-paid hospital workers strike
Royal Berks Hospital Strike, Photo: John Gillman (Click to enlarge)
Two disputes by low-paid hospital workers in Birmingham and Reading are taking place. Heartlands hospital workers in Birmingham work directly for the NHS, and those at the Royal Berkshire are contracted to Kingdom Services Group. But both are frontline NHS workers and are continuing their action into February.
The 23 security guards in the Unite union at Reading hospital are striking over the failure of their employer to make a decent pay offer for 2020.
The Birmingham NHS Heartlands porters in Unison are currently taking strike action about the proposed imposition of a new rota. The proposed rota impacts on workers' health and wellbeing, their caring responsibilities, work/life balance, and results in a significant cut in wages for many.
Outrageously, their reward is attacks from management. We call for all outsourced workers to be brought back in-house and for a 15% pay rise for all NHS workers, as well as defeating the Tory public sector pay freeze.
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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
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- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 27 January 2021:
Covid spreading, poverty rising, rich get richer, fight for socialism!
Health, Covid and the vaccine: It's a class issue
Poverty wages: When workers can't afford to self-isolate
Fees frozen at £9,250 a year, fight for free education
DVLA Covid outbreak: They only care about output and productivity
Jaguar Land Rover: West Midlands superspreader
Schools: 'We have to fight for everything'
Martin Powell-Davies for NEU DGS: "We need to use our collective strength"
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The Socialist 27 January 2021 |
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