Link to this page: https://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/790/17801
We need a real living wage!
We need a pay rise! The sums just don't add up. We're told there's a recovery but if feels more like a robbery.
The profits of the 'big six' energy companies are up 75% this year while the UK is second only to Estonia among European countries for the number of people struggling to pay their energy bills.
No one would consider having a roof over your head a luxury. But research found that 31% of people paying a mortgage or rent spend more than a third of their disposable income each month doing so.
Workers are increasingly finding their wages are out of step with the rising cost of living. Pay packets are down 7% since the 2008 crash and it'll take until 2017 for them to return to the pre-crash level, according to the TUC.
It's of little wonder then that over 500,000 people queue at food banks as the gap between the money and the end of the month grows. An ever increasing number of people forced to rely on food banks are in work.
This situation is a disaster. It means, for example, that a third of children in Liverpool are growing up in poverty in the sixth richest country on the planet.
It's time to take action!
Nick Parker, a trade union activist, says:
"Workers need action over continual wage freezes. Lecturers and support staff in higher education, for example, will be taking strike action on 3 December over a below inflation, 1% pay offer - a 13% pay cut in real terms since 2008. In further education lecturers will also be striking on the same day over a derisory 0.7% pay offer.
Other workers are in dispute too. Probation officers are tackling the government over privatisation of the service and cuts. Firefighters are resisting attacks to their pensions, with many also citing station closures and cuts as a source of major anger.
Socialists believe that working class people should join trade unions immediately if they aren't already members, as we are all the more powerful when organised together.
And when members of different unions are all in dispute, every possible step should be taken to ensure that strike action is coordinated to maximise its strength.
That's why we call on the TUC to name the date for a 24-hour general strike against the government's austerity measures and employers' attacks on jobs, wages and working conditions.
The leaders of the three main parties - whatever their rhetoric - all support capitalist austerity dumped on the backs of workers, and are all implacably hostile to workers when they take strike action.
Socialists, on the other hand, say that strikes are in fact one of the most powerful weapons at our disposal.
We can turn the tide on 'the race to the bottom'. It won't be easy, but they don't call it the class struggle for nothing."
In The Socialist 27 November 2013:
Socialist Party youth and students
Socialist Party news and analysis
International socialist news and analysis
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist Party review