Thursday will see the biggest show of opposition so far to government attempts to make us pay for the financial crisis we did not cause. It is the next step on from the huge TUC march. There is concerted attempt by politicians and the media to make out that public sector pensions are unaffordable. This is a lie. Increasing pensions contributions, reducing benefits and making people work longer is a cynical attempt to reduce the deficit caused by the bank bail out. That is why the anti cuts movement must support the strikes by teachers (NUT and ATL), Civil servants (PCS) and Lecturers (UCU). It is looks like there will be even bigger strike action over pensions in the autumn. UNISON General Secretary Dave Prentis said “to those who say name the day – I say a day is not enough… We will strike to defend our pensions. A campaign of strike action without precedent”. Supporting those on strike on Thursday will help counter the attacks from the media and keep the pressure on other unions to organise large scale co-ordinated strike action in the Autumn. If we can beat the ConDems over pensions we can go onto beat them over cuts to services, pay, benefits, jobs and privatisation. There are two concrete ways you can help on Thursday.
Visit a picket line and tell them you support their action. You will get a warm reception. If you drive past a picket line, honk your horn to show your support. This really helps morale, especially when the Daily Mail and Express will be frothing at the mouth!
There are likely to be pickets at the following places in the morning when people are due to go into work. If I get any more information before Thursday I will let you know.
Park Building, behind the Guildhall (University of Portsmouth)
Mill Dam site off Burnaby Rd, might also have pickets
Job Centres at Arundel St, North End (Kingston Rd, just south of Kingston Crescent) and possibly Cosham High Street
DWP at Roebuck House Cosham
HMRC at Lynx House (just north of the Hilsea Roundabout) and Wingfield House (Commercial Rd north of the precinct)
MOD at Victory Gate at the dockyard and possibly also at Unicorn gate (Unicorn rd)