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From The Socialist newspaper, 24 June 2015

Outsourced workers' pay strike

Hugh Caffrey

Workers employed by outsourcing giant Capita in Salford, Greater Manchester, took a second day of strike action on 19 June against measly pay offers. Their employer is also attacking working conditions.

The workforce was transferred to Capita from couriers DHL. Capita took the contract to supply services for none other than... DHL.

After the transfer, managers got new job titles. Their pay increased - often by thousands - to match equivalents elsewhere in Capita.

Workers, however, were offered a mere 0.5% increase! Following union rejection, bosses made a further offer: 0.75% with performance-related strings attached. When that was rejected too, they made a 'final' offer of 1%.

Members of general union GMB rejected that, and strikes for 2% are now taking place.

Capita's agenda is to drive down pay, with various attacks made or promised. Scrapping various pay-related conditions previously enjoyed by DHL workers. Applying impossible targets. Moving to a multi-tier workforce - where pay is levelled down over time to match the newest, bottom tiers. Even scrimping on basic work equipment: different shifts sharing headsets, offered just a sponge to wipe them clean before use!

The two all-day strikes were solidly supported by GMB members. They have the Socialist Party's continuing backing in whatever they do next.

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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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In The Socialist 24 June 2015:


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City of London fills with defiance against austerity

After huge anti-austerity demos: organise the fightback!

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Youth Fight Austerity!

Them & Us


Socialist Party comments and reviews

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Socialist Party features

Can Jeremy Corbyn's Labour leadership challenge help to develop the socialist left?

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International socialist news and analysis

Greece: Syriza backtracks

International news in brief


Socialist Party workplace news

Prentis pushed to talk up action

Transport workers plan fightback

Regulator eyes Royal Mail for profit

Workplace news in brief

Strike in Swansea to defend home tuition jobs

Outsourced workers' pay strike


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Wales: Local Government reorganisation threat

Scotland anti-austerity rally, Glasgow

Labour wields Tory axe at Library of Birmingham

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Growing the party in Sheffield

Socialist bake-off at London picnic


 

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