Firefighters to join strike by local government workers, teachers and civil servants (From Wiltshire Times)
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Firefighters to join strike by local government workers, teachers and civil servants
Firefighters are the latest public sector workers to join strike action planned for Thursday, July 10, with trade union members across Wiltshire preparing to rally at County Hall.
The long-running dispute over pensions for firefighters will see them join a walk out by local government workers, teachers and civil servants over issues including pay, pensions and workloads.
As part of the action, Unison has organised a rally in front of County Hall, Trowbridge, at 10.30am with members of other trade unions including GMB, PCS and Unite, with Wiltshire braced for a day of disruption.
The National Union of Teachers (NUT) is also striking - the third action carried out by the NUT since last October - over pay, pensions and workloads.
Sue Anderson, Wiltshire Unison branch secretary, said: “Our members are finding it difficult to manage personal finances and many are struggling to survive.
“It is never easy for members to take strike action, and it is always a last resort, but they feel very strongly about this and we are expecting a good turnout at the rally.
“For most Unison members the current pay offer from our employers will leave us with pay worth almost 20 per cent less than in 2010 and our pay and conditions are the worst in the public sector.
“Local government workers are doing far more for far less and working unpaid overtime.
"Members were so disgusted and annoyed by the pay offer that they voted for strike action in our recent industrial action ballot.”
Unison said local government workers have not had a pay rise in three years. The government this year offered them a one per cent rise, but the offer was refused.
Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union general secretary, said: “The FBU has wanted to settle our dispute for a long time, but the government at Westminster is simply not listening.
“We are therefore proud to take strike action alongside our colleagues in other unions on July 10.
"The fact that this government has united so many workers to take strike action against them is a testament to the failure of their policies.”
Wiltshire Council said it is not yet in a position to know how many, if any, council facilities will be closed on July 10.
A council spokesman said: “The council is reviewing its contingency plans to protect its essential services on the day, while also minimising disruption for our customers to other services.”
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