Archive for March, 2010

SP & TUSC Stand With PCS Members on Strike!

March 8, 2010

TUSC activists stood shoulder to shoulder with PCS members across the city on Monday, in the first of two days of strike action to defend jobs and public services. Picket lines were formed across the city, including outside the job centres of this unemployment black spot and the sprawling naval dockyard, yet nowhere was the mood more militant then outside the city land registry where 200 job cuts have also been announced.

PCS member Simon Jones, who has been leading land registry workers in a campaign  to save their jobs, said:  “While we’re facing job losses here, the managers have made sure  they’re safe. Bosses just go from department to department wielding the axe.  Of course that’s not just in our workplace, look at Adam Crozier at the Post Office. He’s tried to privatise that public service, but will it affect him? No, he’s keeping his huge salary and he’s taking it with him to run ITV. That’s how removed these bosses are from us, we end up on the dole while they can job hop around.”

“People seem to think we’re on gold plated pensions, that’s the propaganda we face,’ said another PCS activist, Susan, “but that’s simply not true. The average civil service pension is under £6000, I’d have to be here until I’m over 65 to make £7000, but that’s not going to happen now they’re axing our jobs.”

“The support we’ve had from the public and other unions has been fantastic,” Susan added, “The postman came to deliver this morning, but he refused to cross the picket line and joined us instead.”

“The fact that this is this biggest strike in the civil service for 23 years shows the huge anger that exists against the government attacks on hard-won terms and conditions,” said Andy Waterman, from Portsmouth Socialist Party. “There is clearly support from the public who can see what affect cuts of any kind will have on public services, particularly during an economic crisis.”

On the picket line alongside PCS members, Mick Tosh, RMT Rep and Parliamentary Candidate for the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition in Portsmouth North  said: “I’m standing shoulder to shoulder with comrades in PCS, as the TUSC candidate and as a local trade unionist. Any attack on workers conditions is an attack on working people as a whole. Now is the time for trade unions to come together against the savage cuts and attacks which the major political parties want to unleash.”

“We’re sending out a clear message today that no matter which party wins the coming election, and no matter how many cuts they promote and pursue, we have the answer – sticking together through collective action and fighting back. This action by PCS stands alongside the postal workers strike, the local protests by university staff and students as part of that fight back. We need to build on this, build up the strength of the trade union movement in Portsmouth and build a real, fighting political alternative.”

PCS activists from the Land registry campaign will be joining other local trade unionists at a public meeting hosted by the TUSC: Portsmouth North campaign on 19th March at the Fratton Trade Union Club.