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Unions launch campaign day to protect the right to strike

The TUC will hold a national ‘protect the right to strike’ day on Wednesday 1 February. 

Events will take place in different parts of the country opposing the Government’s new anti-strike legislation.  

Members of the public will be invited to show their support for workers taking action to defend their pay and conditions. 

The TUC has vowed to fight the new strike curbs “every step of the way” – including through parliament and the courts. The union body says the government’s new anti-strike plans are unworkable and almost certainly in breach of international law. 

TUC General Secretary Paul Nowak said:  

“The right to strike is a fundamental British liberty – but the government is attacking it in broad daylight.  Nobody should lose their job if they take lawful action to win a better deal. But ministers have gone from clapping our key workers to threatening them with the sack.” 

The TUC believe the government should be following the example of many employers in the private sector who have sat down with unions and agreed fair pay deals. They are concerned that the new plans will escalate disputes and drive people away from wanting to work in the public sector.

TUC polling published in the last year revealed that 1 in 3 public servants were taking active steps to leave their profession. 

Analysis published by the union body shows that nurses have lost £42,000 in real earnings since 2008 – the equivalent of £3,000 a year; midwives have lost £56,000 in real earnings since 2008 – the equivalent of £4,000 a year and paramedics have lost £56,000 in real earnings since 2008 – the equivalent of £4,000 a year.

The TUC brings together more than 5.5 million working people who belong to 48 member unions. They stand up for everyone who works for a living, by publishing research and evidence, and campaigning for changes to the law and in society

Photo: Jess Hurd