Public sectors strike in Herefordshire over 'unfair' pay

Public sectors strike in Herefordshire over 'unfair' pay

Public sectors striking outside Hereford Shirehall.

A number of UNISON members demonstrated over unfair pay. 1428_15001Photo: James Maggs.

UNISON members striking over unfair pay. 1428_15002 Photo: James Maggs.

UNISON members striking outside Hereford Shirehall. 1428_15003Photo: James Maggs.

UNISON regional organiser Steve Akers addresses the protesters. 1428_15005Photo: James Maggs.

First published in News
Last updated
Hereford Times: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A NUMBER of public sector workers demonstrated today to highlight an ongoing pay dispute.

UNISON held a rally at Hereford Shirehall, while picketing also took place at other places across the city.

Workers have been offered a 1% pay rise, but they believe that still amounts to a cut due to escalating living costs.

"We have had three years of pay freezes," said librarian Jan Nesaratnam.

"Last year, we were offered a 1% pay rise, but two unpaid leaves, so really we have had four year's pay freeze.

"That is at a time when when we have had huge cutbacks.

"My colleagues are doing more and more to keep services going.

"We work for the local government because we care about people."

Fellow librarian Helen Astley said that she demonstrated because she has 'had enough'.

"We have had a 20% pay cut in real terms," she said.

"Services are still being cut and I've had enough.

"Most people in Hereford have been really supportive of us, especially when we explained why we were doing it."

Teachers, court staff and firefighters also staged stikes to highlight their issues.

Some schools had to close as a result of the strike, while partial closures were in force at other establishments.

Steve Akers, regional organiser for UNISON, said he was overwhelmed by the support the strike received.

"I have never experienced such a strong public support and sympathy before," said Mr Akers.

"It really was very inspiring.

"We have got a lot of young women who have stepped up to the plate and become representatives and they have never done anything like this before,

"It is therefore great to have that public backing.

"Our members have delivered a firm message to the employers in local government and local government ministers to get back to the negotiating table."

Mr Akers added that all UNISON branches will meet on Tuesday to analyse the reaction and plan the next course of action.

 

Comments (13)

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4:50pm Thu 10 Jul 14

oldergit says...

What do I get? I am on a pension. They ought to be glad they've got a job.
What do I get? I am on a pension. They ought to be glad they've got a job. oldergit
  • Score: -12

5:22pm Thu 10 Jul 14

Squinny says...

Just out of interest, did these people striking accept the terms of their contract when they started their employment?
Now they are disrupting a lot of lives because they think it's unfair what they had originally accepted.
Just out of interest, did these people striking accept the terms of their contract when they started their employment? Now they are disrupting a lot of lives because they think it's unfair what they had originally accepted. Squinny
  • Score: -12

7:30pm Thu 10 Jul 14

socialcare says...

Try working in some parts of the private sector..that might put things in perspective for them!
Try working in some parts of the private sector..that might put things in perspective for them! socialcare
  • Score: 3

10:34pm Thu 10 Jul 14

Edward01 says...

The stonewall wind farm demo managed more attendance than this quantity of people from a population of only 450!
The stonewall wind farm demo managed more attendance than this quantity of people from a population of only 450! Edward01
  • Score: 0

5:35am Fri 11 Jul 14

B the B says...

Squinny wrote:
Just out of interest, did these people striking accept the terms of their contract when they started their employment?
Now they are disrupting a lot of lives because they think it's unfair what they had originally accepted.
Edward, you missed the point. I think you will find that its because they have had things changed since signing a contract that they were on strike. It works both ways. You sign an employment contract so yes that's what you get - for employees and employers. I think you will find the biggest disruption is yet to come when the council start cutting services, for ever, not just one day. I'm not in a union.
[quote][p][bold]Squinny[/bold] wrote: Just out of interest, did these people striking accept the terms of their contract when they started their employment? Now they are disrupting a lot of lives because they think it's unfair what they had originally accepted.[/p][/quote]Edward, you missed the point. I think you will find that its because they have had things changed since signing a contract that they were on strike. It works both ways. You sign an employment contract so yes that's what you get - for employees and employers. I think you will find the biggest disruption is yet to come when the council start cutting services, for ever, not just one day. I'm not in a union. B the B
  • Score: 1

5:36am Fri 11 Jul 14

B the B says...

Sorry Edward not you meant Squinny.
Sorry Edward not you meant Squinny. B the B
  • Score: -1

5:49am Fri 11 Jul 14

fmrbill says...

try private sector or worse self employed be grateful for 1% ure golden goose in public sector has stopped laying the golden egg. get use to it large pay rises are over. its a fact for us all just taken longer for public sector to get real. lets have a few more whistle blowers then telling us how council waste money , then u mite find more money left over for wages. my council tax in over 10 yrs has gone up from 198 /annum to over 1500 pls tell me where the services have increased that much. no support here for u im afraid now I wait for all the negative votes. I love it )))(
try private sector or worse self employed be grateful for 1% ure golden goose in public sector has stopped laying the golden egg. get use to it large pay rises are over. its a fact for us all just taken longer for public sector to get real. lets have a few more whistle blowers then telling us how council waste money , then u mite find more money left over for wages. my council tax in over 10 yrs has gone up from 198 /annum to over 1500 pls tell me where the services have increased that much. no support here for u im afraid now I wait for all the negative votes. I love it )))( fmrbill
  • Score: 6

9:04am Fri 11 Jul 14

Clarkester says...

fmrbill, poor grammar, spelling and lack of punctuation aside, the vast majority of public sector workers have not had large pay rises for many years, if at all. On the whole, since about 2008, there have been pay freezes, job (D)evaluation exercises, a revolving door of middle-management that are just there "to make a difference" (screw things up!)
Restructuring where you end up losing a good percentage of the workforce. In the name of cost-saving.
Forced unpaid leave.
The expectation from the Government that more and more information will be supplied, but with less and less resources from them to do the job.
Morale is lower than rock bottom in most places.
People seem to think that Local Government employees have it easy, and get paid way over the odds, this is just plain wrong, unless you are in some sort of management position.
Then, you have your terms and conditions, contract, pensions changed - for the worse...
How is that fair?
If some people still have the guts to take a stand, then good for them. It won't make a blind bit of difference though. One day strikes are merely a little bit irritating.
fmrbill, poor grammar, spelling and lack of punctuation aside, the vast majority of public sector workers have not had large pay rises for many years, if at all. On the whole, since about 2008, there have been pay freezes, job (D)evaluation exercises, a revolving door of middle-management that are just there "to make a difference" (screw things up!) Restructuring where you end up losing a good percentage of the workforce. In the name of cost-saving. Forced unpaid leave. The expectation from the Government that more and more information will be supplied, but with less and less resources from them to do the job. Morale is lower than rock bottom in most places. People seem to think that Local Government employees have it easy, and get paid way over the odds, this is just plain wrong, unless you are in some sort of management position. Then, you have your terms and conditions, contract, pensions changed - for the worse... How is that fair? If some people still have the guts to take a stand, then good for them. It won't make a blind bit of difference though. One day strikes are merely a little bit irritating. Clarkester
  • Score: 7

11:13am Fri 11 Jul 14

yokelyokel says...

oldergit wrote:
What do I get? I am on a pension. They ought to be glad they've got a job.
State pensions are index linked. They don't lose value, and are funded by the tax paid by the people you criticise who would be delighted if their own income was index linked rather than losing value every month for 5 years.
You ought to be grateful that they have a job - so say thank you, nicely.
[quote][p][bold]oldergit[/bold] wrote: What do I get? I am on a pension. They ought to be glad they've got a job.[/p][/quote]State pensions are index linked. They don't lose value, and are funded by the tax paid by the people you criticise who would be delighted if their own income was index linked rather than losing value every month for 5 years. You ought to be grateful that they have a job - so say thank you, nicely. yokelyokel
  • Score: 15

11:31am Fri 11 Jul 14

dodger3 says...

Public sector employee,s are an easy target. The Government and Tory press continually harp on about gold plated pensions etc. In truth, a vast majority of public sector workers are on low incomes which have depreciated over the last 4/5 years. there are less staff, working under extreme stress with more demands placed upon them. You get what you pay for. Grass not being cut, NHS in decline, lack of Police resources, 40% of new Teachers leaving in first three years and roads full of pot holes-this Country once had Public services to be proud of.
Public sector employee,s are an easy target. The Government and Tory press continually harp on about gold plated pensions etc. In truth, a vast majority of public sector workers are on low incomes which have depreciated over the last 4/5 years. there are less staff, working under extreme stress with more demands placed upon them. You get what you pay for. Grass not being cut, NHS in decline, lack of Police resources, 40% of new Teachers leaving in first three years and roads full of pot holes-this Country once had Public services to be proud of. dodger3
  • Score: 10

10:02pm Fri 11 Jul 14

fmrbill says...

well pls tell me public sector where my council tax has and is going as I say over 10 yrs by tax has gone up 1000% and my services havent so come on tell me where is it has we r told council is nearly bankrupt so come pray tell whose pockets has it lined or we just got to accept being lead by idiots and morons. I say NO ITS TIME TO REBEL
well pls tell me public sector where my council tax has and is going as I say over 10 yrs by tax has gone up 1000% and my services havent so come on tell me where is it has we r told council is nearly bankrupt so come pray tell whose pockets has it lined or we just got to accept being lead by idiots and morons. I say NO ITS TIME TO REBEL fmrbill
  • Score: 0

12:04am Sat 12 Jul 14

Clarkester says...

fmrbill... You don't like public sector workers do you?
You do know that all of them also have to pay council tax and that it has gone up by 1000% in a decade for them too. I'm pretty sure the vast majority of them aren't that pleased about it either,especially after suffering pay cut after pay freeze, and the almost constant threat of being made redundant...
I wholeheartedly agree though, the council is run by a bunch of total imbeciles that lurch from one total mess to the next with seemingly joyful abandon!
fmrbill... You don't like public sector workers do you? You do know that all of them also have to pay council tax and that it has gone up by 1000% in a decade for them too. I'm pretty sure the vast majority of them aren't that pleased about it either,especially after suffering pay cut after pay freeze, and the almost constant threat of being made redundant... I wholeheartedly agree though, the council is run by a bunch of total imbeciles that lurch from one total mess to the next with seemingly joyful abandon! Clarkester
  • Score: 5

8:09am Sun 13 Jul 14

B the B says...

The council tax is only a small part of the Councils income, the Government decides how much councils receive for services, this is being cut hence a decline in services. Blame the Government not the workers, or even the council to be honest.
The council tax is only a small part of the Councils income, the Government decides how much councils receive for services, this is being cut hence a decline in services. Blame the Government not the workers, or even the council to be honest. B the B
  • Score: 1

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