'We can’t afford to lose the right to strike.'
The Trades Union Congress (TUC) has organised an emergency protest on Monday 22nd May for 6.00pm outside Parliament Square, as it fights to protect the right to strike which is under attack from the Tory government.
Mick Lynch from the RMT, Matt Wrack from the FBU and Kevin Courtney will be speaking at the rally, with Unison, USDAW and the PCS union all showing their support.
The government’s strikes bill, which will empower employers to sue unions and sack staff in crucial sectors if minimum service levels aren’t maintained, has been slammed as an attack on the fundamental right to strike and as a draconian piece of legislation. The Bill essentially means that when workers lawfully vote to strike in health, education, fire, transport, border security and nuclear decommissioning, they could be forced to attend work – and sacked if they don’t comply.
The TUC said in a press statement: “We can’t afford to lose the right to strike. But multi-millionaire Tory politicians are attacking our right to strike for better pay and fair treatment at work.
“They’re planning to sack key workers who take action to improve pay and conditions. First they’re coming for paramedics, firefighters and rail workers- but who will be next?
“Join the emergency protest in Westminster to demand that MPs REJECT the Strikes Bill and to demand that opposition parties commit to REPEAL the Strikes Bill.
“This is our last chance to save key workers’ jobs, our last chance to save the right to a pay rise. We will not be silenced- come to the protest to make your voice heard. Protect the right to strike.
“The attack on our right to strike has reached a critical point. On Monday, the Strikes Bill returns to the House of Commons where MPs will cast their final vote.
“MPs will have a clear choice: will they support the right of working people to go on strike for fair pay? Or will they attack our fundamental rights and sack key workers if they take strike action?”
You can find more details about the protest here.
Basit Mahmood is editor of Left Foot Forward