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The Socialist 14 May 2014 |
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Fight together for a pay rise - Come to the NSSN conference
Rob Williams, Chair, National Shop Stewards Network
There is now the real prospect of Unison, GMB and Unite in the councils taking action together with teachers from the NUT, PCS and firefighters on 10 July. Workers are facing a barrage of attacks - particularly over pay.
Now we have the Tories once again threatening to try to limit strike action by imposing thresholds on strike ballots. As former RMT general secretary Bob Crow pointed out in February, London Mayor Boris Johnson was elected to his office with the support of just 17% of people entitled to vote: "The rank hypocrisy of those who want to impose one form of democracy on the working class while clinging on to another form of democracy for their own political class stinks like a case of rotting fish."
This year's National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) conference - the eighth in our still young history - is taking place just days before this potential mass pay strike. The conference will be indispensable for all those striving to build coordinated strike action against what is still a weak and divided government.
At London's May Day rally RMT members present were fresh off the London Underground picket lines, where two days of strike action have again forced management to the negotiating table. The day after the rally, firefighters started three days of national strikes to defend their pensions. This week, PCS members in the Land Registry are taking action to oppose privatisation.
The RMT had a national mobilisation to honour the fighting militant legacy of Bob Crow, tragically cut down in his prime. But despite the solemn occasion, RMT members weren't downbeat. They called out to TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady, when she spoke: "We need a general strike!"
The NSSN calls on all the unions taking or planning strike action to get together to agree a common strategy, particularly to break the pay freeze but could also incorporate all the other grievances that face workers in this 'recovery' - not for us, just for the fat cats!
National Shop Stewards Network conference
Saturday 5 July 11am-5pm in Conway Hall,
Red Lion Square, Holborn, London WC1R 4RL
- What recovery? We want our share! Fight Together for a Pay Rise!
- Break the pay freeze, fight for a real living wage, oppose zero-hour contracts, fight for PAYE
Delegate/visitor fee £6. You can pay on the day. But to register in advance, please send your fee of £6 per person, payable to: 'National Shop Stewards Network' at PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE
Confirmed speakers include Ronnie Draper BFAWU bakers' union general secretary, POA general secretary Steve Gillan and Janice Godrich PCS President