Members of GMB and Unite join forces at Euston

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Members of GMB and Unite are today taking part in a rally to boost support for industrial action in the dispute with government over pension changes in the public services.

The unions are currently balloting for strike action on November 30th over the local government pension scheme, the NHS pension scheme and the Civil Service pension scheme.

Other unions balloting for official industrial action on pensions include UNISON, NASUWT, FDA, Prospect, CSP, NAPO, EIS, Ucatt, AEP and SCP.The ATL, NUT, UCU and PCS already have authority to take industrial action.

GMB national secretary Brian Strutton said: “We’ve been in negotiations with government for several months about the future of public sector pensions and progress has been painfully slow. While those negotiations are still on-going government has started implementing its plans which would mean public service workers paying around 50% more for a worse pension that they have to work longer to get.

“That is why we have had to move now to ballot for industrial action and our members tell us we are right to do so because they simply cannot afford what the government is demanding. No-one wants to see public services disrupted so I urge government to quickly come forward with better proposals that give us an opportunity to negotiate a settlement that is fair to public sector workers and taxpayers alike.”

Unite national officer Peter Allenson said: “The government plans to impose changes which will force local government workers to pay more, work longer but earn less in retirement. We say local government pensions are already affordable. We say the cuts will hurt women and the poorest most of all. We say enough is enough; it is time to make a stand and vote yes for action on November 30. The average (median) local government pension is only £3,048 a year. Workers’ and their unions are building for the biggest ever mobilisation of workers in decades as the battle begins to defend public sector pensions.”

* The rally takes place between: 11am and 1pm at the Friends Meeting House, Euston, London NW1 2BJ


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