November 30: You were magnificent
Around 300,000 public service workers in Scotland stood
up to fight the government's malicious and unnecessary
pensions cuts on 30 November.
Rallies across the country underlined the resolve of
public service workers to stand up for fairness - and
to defeat the myths and lies peddled by the government
and big business.
At the Edinburgh rally, Rodney Bickerstaffe, President
of the National Pensioners Forum and ex UNISON General
Secretary, roused the 10,000 strong crowd and told young
have a legal right and a moral duty to stand up to bullies
At a pensions strike rally in the Barrowlands Ballroom
in Glasgow, UNISON Scottish Secretary Mike Kirby hailed
the 'solid strike' and told members "The real pensions’
crisis is in the private sector – where two thirds
of employers do not pay a single penny towards their
Solid strike - with great public support –
shows government must stop Great Pensions Robbery.
"Public sector workers are entitled to pensions
that are affordable, sustainable and fair. Public sector
workers are doing what successive governments have told
them to do to prepare for life after work.
"At a time of pay freezes, pay caps, real pay
cuts, significant increases in national insurance contributions,
higher VAT, rising inflation and fuel costs,
we believe it is wrong to require public service workers
to increase their pension contributions. Contributions
which will go straight to the Treasury
to pay off the deficit caused by the banks.
"50% increase in monthly contributions for 15%
less benefits over the lifetime of drawing benefits.
Some Fair Deal on Pensions.
"The real pensions’ crisis is in the private
sector – where two thirds of employers do not
pay a single penny towards their workers’ pensions.
"It could cost this country up to £15 billion
to support the millions of private sector workers who
have been locked out of saving for their retirement.
"Never before have so many public service workers
- and so many women - taken action. We know that today’s
strike is being lead by women – 3.7 million could
be affected by the plans to make detrimental changes
"And they won’t be fooled by government
ministers’ claims that their justified action
will hit jobs. They know the real reasons that the dole
queues are growing are the disastrous choices the government
"The critics of today - the bonus billionaires
and Tory Cabinet millionaires - know nothing of the
value of public services, where we care for elderly
and infirm, we teach children, empty bins and save lives.
"And as floods hit parts of Scotland people resort
to public services for assistance. But on a day like
today, you don’t want to hear from me.
"You’d rather hear from George the police
civilian in Dundee, who, with his colleagues, walked
off the shift at midnight.
"You’d rather hear from Tina the nurse in
Inverness Tina has worked as a nurse for 27 years. She
looks after outpatients at her local hospital £597
worse off today because of the 50% contributions, £1,275
worse off tomorrow because of the cut in benefits.
"Davena and the security staff at Glasgow Caley
University marched off shift at midnight... led by a
"Nursery nurse Carol, tackled her first live TV
interview last night, to tell Scotland, that after 30
years paying a pension she’s being robbed."
Archive 30 November
Up to three million public service workers are striking
against attacks on their pensions. Attacks that mean
we'll pay more, work longer and get less. For full details
of the attacks see the UNISONScotland
UK pensions pages.
Keep up to date with strike day news and events - and
better still, let us here your news, your messages,
your photos and your videos on the day.
events and send and read messages of support
on the google action map going online soon Click
here for a list of STUC rallies
photos - with brief notes about place and event
- to firstname.lastname@example.org
text photos (or very short videos) to 07766 399 264
can email videos but it's best to upload you video to
YouTube and send us the links at email@example.com
events on the blog
and on twitter
(use #unisonscotn30 and #N30) and facebook
you can do all this too on the UK website.
And remember - we want news, pics and videos as
they are happening so send them right away!