Public Sector Unions to take to the streets over Coalition Cuts

Posted on September 26, 2010 by

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The Blowhole's expert team of artists worked hard to bring you this artist's impression of the rally...

On Wednesday 29th Public Sector Union members are set to take to the streets to demonstrate against the Coalitions broad cuts in Public Services.  The rally is taking place between 17:00 and 18:00 at the Bargate.

Instigated by the Southampton UNISON branch, all the major public sector trade unions in Southampton – UNISON, Unite, GMB, NUT, PCS and FBU, will be uniting at the rally to “defend services and jobs”.  Unions across Europe are also demonstrating on the same day, with the largest demonstration in Brussels where over 100,000 public sector workers from across Europe are expected.

Southampton’s unions are demonstrating in the context of cuts which have already begun to filter through in Southampton, with Librarians having striked again last week and maintaining a policy of disobedience against a programme of replacing jobs with volunteers, threats of closure for Millbrook and Thornhill libraries, Bitterne NHS Walk-In Centre threatened with closure, services such as support for young gay people already axed and the national threat of cuts across the entire public sector.

Organisers at Southampton’s demonstration claim that “Hundreds of Southampton public sector workers will be joining the protest”, and have asked residents to join them in order to “unite together to defend vital public services in Southampton”.

Librarians Update:

Another Librarian’s Strike on September 15th closed Libraries across the City again for the fourth time.  Southampton Unison report that:

100 library workers and supporters lobbied Councillors arriving for the Council meeting on the 15th. A UNISON delegation consisting of Phi…l Wood (Regional Secretary), Bob Cole (Librarian) and Mike Tucker (Branch Secretary) addressed Councillors and handed in a 4500 strong petition opposing the closure of Millbrook and Thornhill libraries and the replacement of librarians by volunteers. Labour and Liberal Democrat Councillors supported a motion moved by Cllr Derek Burke opposing the introduction of new style volunteers into the City’s libraries. Although the motion was defeated by Conservative Councillors, a commitment was given by Cllr Hannides that the City Council would take part in talks being organised by the Government’s arbitration service, ACAS. In the Council Chamber Cllr Hannides accused UNISON of scaremongering and misleading the public. Obviously he is upset by the thousands of leaflets striking library workers have delivered to homes across the City, including around the various houses he owns. No date has been set yet for the ACAS talks.

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Posted in: News, Southampton, UK