Trade unionists mobilise for Workplace Day of Action calling for a ceasefire in Gaza

Coordinated local action and rallies took place nationwide today from workers and students

Workers and students across the UK mobilised today for a Workplace Day of Action continuing the call for an immediate ceasefire. 

Trade union members and staff organised a series of protests in workplaces throughout the day in response to the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Gaza. 

Health workers at over 13 hospitals hosted walk outs and lunchtime protests as part of the action, coordinated by Health Workers for Palestine and Stop the War Coalition. 

Unions mobilising their members included the University and College Union (UCU), National Education Union (NEU) and the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS). Members of the PCS union who work in and around Whitehall staged a lunchtime protest outside Parliament, while PCS Scotland members led a demonstration outside City Chambers.

UCU General Secretary Jo Grady said all actions “big or small” are important in drawing attention to the campaign for a ceasefire and “building pressure on the government”.

“We demand that our government calls for a permanent ceasefire and an end to the horrific scenes we are seeing daily in Gaza”, said Grady. 

“I am proud that our union has, since the start of this horrific period, consistently demanded a ceasefire and the return of all hostages.”

Education unions have continued to draw attention to the destruction of education facilities in Gaza, where every university has now been bombed and either partially or totally destroyed. 

Over 11,500 Palestinian children have been killed in Gaza and the West Bank by the Israeli military so far since the Hamas attacks. 

School and university students also walked out today in peaceful protest to demand an end to the bombings in Gaza. A coalition of media workers also held a rally in central London drawing attention to the killing of 119 journalists in the Gaza conflict.

Members of different unions stood in solidarity in their call for a ceasefire, with RMT staff joining GMB union staff to send support to the workers and people of Gaza, as well as Unite the union members joining GMB and UCU workers at rallies. 

Mick Whelan, General Secretary of ASLEF union, will speak at a trade union solidarity webinar tonight calling on workers to unite against the arms trade with Israel. 

(Image credit: Stop the War Coalition)

Hannah Davenport is news reporter at Left Foot Forward, focusing on trade unions and environmental issues

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