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30 June: A day of strikes and protests

Thursday 30 June is set to be a day of strikes and protest.

Up to 750,000 public sector workers will stage a 24-hour walkout on  30 June, with civil servants then embarking on a month-long ban on overtime.

This afternoon, the PCS (Public and Commercial Services) Union voted with 61.1% majority to strike. Industrial action in other forms was favoured by 83.6%. The ballot turnout of members was 32.4%.

The reason? The union is protesting at planned changes to pensions as well as job cuts and a pay freeze for civil servants as part of the Government’s austerity measures.

The news followed huge strike votes yesterday by members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) over pensions.

All this comes as figures show unemployment down in Wales to 7.9% (a drop of 9,000 to 115,000 people).

UK Uncut plan to get in on the action on 30 June, too.

UK Uncut have held a number of protests against tax-avoidance across the UK (Photo: UK Uncut Protest in Brighton December 2010)

UK Uncut said it was planning a public “spectacle” in London on June 30, inviting union members to take part in a “creative protest” to highlight the “injustice” behind the Government’s cuts.

Members of the group have occupied banks and stores in recent months as part of its campaign against tax-avoidance.

UK Uncut activist Mark Williams, from London, said: “By joining the unions we can help show there are alternatives to the Government’s cuts, for example making the banks pay for a crisis they created or stopping tax dodging by corporations and the rich.”

Prime Minister David Cameron’s official spokesman said that the level of public sector strikes in the UK remains “low”, but said the Government was keeping the question of whether to tighten the law on industrial disputes under review.

Will you be part of the strike? Let us know @ITVWalesor email us on news@itvwales.com.

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Discussion

3 thoughts on “30 June: A day of strikes and protests

  1. If the PCS membership, which appears to be a paltry 260,000 of the people working in their field, only turned out to the tune of 32.4%, and 61.1% of those voted to strike, that says to me that less than 20% of their membership voted to strike, which would be in turn a considerably smaller percentage of those actually working in those jobs. That does not come across to me as a huge mandate.

    Posted by G. Gardiner | June 20, 2011, 2:52 pm
  2. The old turnout issue comes up all the time. That’s the argument the government is trying to use constantly to diminish the action that is proposed. The government’s logic is that all of those who did not vote were in effect voting No to the strike action. False. Neither can those on the other side state that those who did not vote would have voted Yes. You cannot say either way. Because they did not vote. All you can go on is the result of the actual vote itself. The same as in a general election. Accept that then move on.

    Those who voted yes,would have had to accept it if a majority vote was No. Why can’t those who vote No, or who look in from the outside and try to dismiss the public anger at the slaughter of the services we all pay for, do the same? If you must extrapolate numbers, all you could reasonably do is say that those who did not vote would have voted in much the same proportions as those who did vote. That’s what statistics and the law of averages tell us.

    But move from trying to spin stats. Acknowledge that cutting the essential public services that keep this country running is a bad thing. I’ll stand up for you when your area of work is attacked. Otherwise, we all get picked off one by one. Not a country I want to live in.

    Posted by Iamspartacus | June 23, 2011, 3:10 pm
    • No spin of stats – just adding up those already in the article, plus the Union’s own membership figure.

      Yes, we do pay a huge amount for public services, and we need them, but we are paying too much for a great deal of the service given. Many of the people giving them are out of touch with the fact that they are complaining about changes to their terms and conditions that most of the rest of the country has had to put up with for quite some time, added to which the country cannot afford to go on spending this vast amount, in its current situation.

      I also like living in this country. I don’t want it to get like Greece because it gives in to every bit of pressure and overspends. At least we’re not in the Euro, so we have more leeway than Greece, even so we are in a dangerous situation. It is a hard thing to face up to, and it is not fair that the financial sector is what has got us into this mess and nobody seems to have the courage to make them pay for it, but that is another question.

      Posted by G. Gardiner | June 23, 2011, 8:53 pm

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