The Socialist

The Socialist 3 March 2021

Not a budget for the working class!

The Socialist issue 1123

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RAF Leeming strike escalates

Picket line at RAF Leeming. Photo: Yorkshire SP

Picket line at RAF Leeming. Photo: Yorkshire SP   (Click to enlarge)

Over 50 workers on a Babcock Aerospace contract for operational and engineering services at RAF Leeming, north Yorkshire, have been taking discontinuous action since 20 January, escalating to two days of strike action at a time.

Management refuses to accede to the demands for shift pay parity with workers doing similar work at RAF Valley on Anglesey, a difference of up to 5,000 a year. So the workers, organised in Unite, are escalating to three days' strike action a week from 2 March.

Most of the workers are ex-forces, and as one worker told me on the picket line on 23 February: "Striking doesn't come that naturally to us, it's taken quite a lot to force us to get to this point". Another striker explained more bluntly: "Management don't give a shit about us!"

The workforce remains solid, with a sizeable proportion of those on strike each day joining the picket lines. The position of the workers will be boosted by the newly awarded contract for maintenance of Hawk training jets for the Qatari Emiri Air Force in the hanger directly next to the Babcock workers. This contract pays better rates than those the Babcocks workers are on, and many workers will be considering applying for those jobs.

  • Messages of solidarity can be sent to the shop steward at [email protected]
  • Donations to the strike fund can be made payable to 'Unite the Union' and forwarded to the Leeds Regional Office, Unite the Union, 55 Call Lane, Leeds, LS1 7BW marked for the attention of the regional secretary (Babcock Aerospace Dispute)
Iain Dalton, Socialist Party Yorkshire

In this issue


Not a budget for the working class!

Public sector workers respond to the budget


President of 'big four' Labour-affiliated trade union joins TUSC committee

Women's health matters

International Women's Day

A fighting programme for women's rights and socialism

A history of International Women's Day

What we think

Liverpool Labour meltdown - Fight for socialist policies

School safety

Schools' safety - teachers demand fighting union strategy


'Casino capitalism' - driving another potential financial Armageddon

1981: New Cross Massacre


Bus workers under attack and fighting back

Manchester indefinite bus strike against 'fire and rehire'

HMRC: Pay deal agreed but at what cost?

British Gas strike

Sparks force bosses back but fight continues to stamp out deskilling

Reinstate victimised bus driver Declan Clune

RAF Leeming strike escalates

Tech workers walk out against 'fire and rehire'

Victory for Judith, defend Moe


Why we need socialists in London city hall

Socialist Students conference

Swansea BLM protest against racist police brutality

Union fight to save musicians' livelihoods

Labour surrenders to Tories in Devon

Determined to smash the fighting fund target to fuel election challenge in May


Home   |   The Socialist 3 March 2021   |   Join the Socialist Party

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3 March 2021