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Britain Needs A Pay Rise!

12/10/2014
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This post lists Sussex and London actions to support through to Monday 20 October, so do keep scrolling down!

Support striking NHS staff – Monday 13 October 2014

Bzumtt9IAAAa4HWMembers of GMB, the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), Unite the Union and UNISON working in the health sector are striking from 7am – 11am in protest at a third year without a pay rise. They will be joined by PCS members working in the NHS Pensions Agency.  Following this NHS staff will only work their contracted hours throughout 13-17 October 2014.

This is the first industrial action over NHS workers’ pay in over three decades and the first in the entire 133 year history of the RCM. Quite rightly, NHS workers are seething over low pay as their pay has been frozen for four years while they see MPs now being awarded an independent pay rise they were denied.  How can MPs be given 11% on top of already high salaries while NHS staff are denied a 1% increase for mostly low paid jobs?

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1 in 5 NHS workers have taken second jobs and half say they can’t get through to the end of the month without relying on debt. Two thirds of NHS workers have cut back on food, 51% have reduced their energy usage, 44% have cut back on transport, 80% went without holidays and 90% had to cut back on leisure activities.  Shocked?  This is unsurprising when UNISON calculates that there has been a 8-12% real-terms fall in NHS salary levels since 2010 and no above-inflation pay rise since 2009.  If you need to hear more, NHS workers have explained why they are striking and UNISON members have a bit more to say.

UNISON no pay cuts, save our NHS

We encourage everyone to send messages of support to members in all the unions involved in the week of action, either as individuals or from your own union branch, workplace, Labour Party branch or other labour movement organisation. Those on twitter can tweet support to: @GMBPressOffice@unisontweets, @unitetheunion, and @MidwivesRCM .

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We condemn the Coalition’s plan to use army and police vehicles in place of ambulances during the strike, in London and other parts of the country although not, so far, in Sussex. Emergency service workers are always prepared to make adequate cover arrangements during industrial action but the government has ignored the possibility of talks in order to spread alarm and so distract from its own poverty pay agenda.

Please support health workers at local Sussex pickets from 7am-11am, which have so far been advertised at these Sussex NHS facilities:

GMB Here Angry FightingRoyal Sussex County Hospital, Brighton

Princess Royal Hospital, Haywards Heath

Brighton General Hospital, south entrance

Crawley Hospital

Lanchaster House, Trafalgar Place, Brighton home to Brighton and Hove CCG

Worthing Hospital

St Richards Hospital, Chichester

Aldrington House, Hove

Swandean

Millview Hospital, also known as Hove Polyclinic

Hill Rise, Newhaven

Uckfield Hospital

Langley Green Hospital, Crawley

Eastbourne DGH, psychiatric unit

This is unlikely to be a comprehensive list.  We expect that there will also be pickets at other Sussex NHS facilities, such as at the Conquest Hospital in Hastings

Unite the union has made a range of strike materials available online

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Tuesday 14 October 2014 – Support SERCO workers striking in Mid-Sussex

untitledSPlease show solidarity with refuse, recycling and street cleansing workers who voted by over 80% to reject another derisory 1% pay offer from this private company operating a highly profitable contract for public services, paid for by the taxpayer. Please support pickets expected to be outside the SERCO depot in Haywards Heath throughout the day. This dispute is separate to the suspended national action by local government workers, so please don’t forget to support these workers when they strike on Tuesday.

 

We encourage everyone to send messages of support to members of the GMB’s Sussex Branch, either as individuals or from your own union branch, workplace, Labour Party branch or other labour movement organisation. Those on twitter can tweet support to @GMBSussexBranch and @GMBSouthern .

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3.15pm, Tuesday 14 October – Support Hove lobby to stop the privatisation of B&H NHS services

Sussex County Cricket Ground, Eaton Road, Hove BN3 3AN

GMB Southern NHS bannerPeople in Brighton & Hove are asked to support the lobby of the Health & WellBeing Board from 3.15pm outside Sussex County Cricket Ground.  It’s not too late to write to councillors to protest against these plans. UNISON has provided specimen text to send.

This meeting will make key recommendations to Brighton & Hove councillors regarding totally unnecessary plans from the Green and Tory Groups to privatise two local NHS services – the ICES community equipment store, which provides vital equipment to assist in the care of patients at home, and the Substance Misuse Service, which has done so much to reduce deaths and treat alcohol and drug addiction in the city. Please come along to show your opposition to any privatisation of NHS services.

 

Wednesday 15 October – Support striking civil servants

 

PCS banner at Bob Crow funeral_03.14 cropAs PCS members take strike action, please show solidarity at local picket lines. These are likely to be outside job centres, DWP offices, tax offices, courts and other public offices where many PCS members work.  Officially labelled “civil servants”, PCS members are mainly low paid and are struggling to survive after a seven year pay freeze.

PCS has contributed to The Great Pay Robbery booklet recently published by the Trade Union Coordinating Group.  This booklet examines the factors which are contributing to the squeeze on real incomes of the majority of earners, and recommends what can be done to remedy this. Did you know that some PCS members have seen their take home pay plummet 20% in real terms as a result of pay constraint and additional pension contributions?  Meanwhile, the collective wealth of the 1,000 wealthiest Britons rose by £70 billion in the last year alone – enough to give every working person in the UK a £2,000 pay rise.

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We encourage everyone to send messages of support to PCS members, either as individuals or from your own union branch, workplace, Labour Party branch or other labour movement organisation. Those on twitter can tweet support to @pcs_union and @PCS_Brighton among other PCS accounts, or email your message to solidarity@pcs.org.uk .

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7.30pm, Wednesday 15 October – Oppose £235m West Sussex NHS contract being awarded to BUPA

St Paul’s Church, Northgate, Chichester

Discuss opposition to the privatisation of musculoskeletal services by West Sussex CCG, which risks future NHS services at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, including Worthing and Chichester hospitals.

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Speakers include Sian Rabi-Laleh – UNISON National Officer for Health, Dr Lucy Reynolds, who has campaigned for years nationally against the destruction of the NHS, and well-known local campaigner Margaret Guest – Chair of Don’t Cut Us Out, which fought social care cuts and privatisation in West Sussex.  Join the fight against fragmentation and privatisation of our NHS before it is too late.

The importance of stopping each and every privatisation from our NHS is demonstrated by the Mirror’s live counter which lets you see just how much public NHS money is going in to private hands.

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3.15pm, Thursday 16 October – Support Hove lobby to stop the privatisation of B&H NHS services

Hove Town Hall, Norton Road, Hove BN3 4AH 

People in Brighton & Hove are asked to support the lobby of the City Council’s Policy & Resources Committee which will decide upon the proposed privatisation of local ICES community equipment store, which provides vital equipment to assist in the care of patients at home, and the Substance Misuse Service, which has done so much to reduce deaths and treat alcohol and drugs addiction in the city. Please come along to show your opposition to any privatisation of NHS services.  Assemble from 3.15pm outside Hove Town Hall.  It’s not too late to write to councillors to protest against these plans. UNISON has provided specimen text to send.

Unison protest against the NHS changes

 

IMAG075516, 17 & 20 October – Support Brighton & Hove Cityclean workers

As the bin dispute rumbles on in Brighton & Hove, please continue to support bin lorry drivers demanding fair recognition for their skills and qualifications, in the face of a Council led and managed by people seemingly unable and unwilling to recognise and resolve the separate complaints of its workforce.

We encourage everyone to send messages of support to members of the GMB’s Sussex Branch, either as individuals or from your own union branch, workplace, Labour Party branch or other labour movement organisation. Those on twitter can tweet support to @GMBSussexBranch .

 

Saturday 18 October 2014 – Britain Needs a Pay Rise!

Join the national TUC march and demo in London. Full information is available from the event website.

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Transport options, including coaches and a train from Eastbourne, plus many coaches from Crawley, Hastings, Horsham, Lewes and Worthing are all listed on the TUC’s Rough Economy website.  Tickets (£12 waged, £6 unwaged) can still be booked on the Brighton to Victoria train organised by Brighton and Hove District Trades Council.

GB workers deserve better pay

Monday 20 October 2014 – Support Striking NHS Radiographers

Don’t forget to support our NHS radiographers whose late ballot meant that they cannot strike with other NHS workers on 13 October.  We encourage everyone to send messages of support to members of the Society of Radiographers, either as individuals or from your own union branch, workplace, Labour Party branch or other labour movement organisation. Those on twitter can tweet support to @SCoRMembers .

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