Hundreds Of Public Sector Workers Turn Out For Rally

Hundreds of Island workers went on the public sector march and rally yesterday protesting at changes to pensions

Thanks to Jim Moody for sending through photos from yesterday’s march and rally by striking public sector workers.

March from St Mary'sHundreds of workers attended the march which set off from the St Mary’s Hospital picket line in the morning.

Labour councillor Geoff Lumley, who took part in the strike and march said, “I give full and unconditional support for those taking strike action. This ConDem government is attacking the terms and conditions of ordinary workers who deliver our public services, in order to finance the reckless behaviour of the bankers.”

“Attacks are not fair”
He went on to day, “People understand that these attacks are not fair. I oppose all cuts to jobs, conditions and services and will always stand alongside those who seek to defend them.”

Around 750 people took part in the rally with many more on strike across the Island.

Click on images for larger versions

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Thursday, 1st December, 2011 4:54pm

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Filed under: Government, Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight Jobs, Isle of Wight News

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

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87 Comments on "Hundreds Of Public Sector Workers Turn Out For Rally"

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NECH

They ought to think themselves lucky that they have a job.

No future

So just because you are “lucky” enough to have a job, you are supposed to take any old **** from your employer? People have to stand up to bully boy tactics or just sit back and give up.

NECH

I didn’t say that, did I?

Don Smith
So what has your day of action achieved? It has cost the country £Millions and many low paid workers have lost a days pay. Teachers, especially are very well paid. and considering all the holidays they get…Should count their blessings. There is only so much cash in the pot, and it should be shared out more equally. If you do not like teaching, five days a week… Read more »
keithybaby

Of course there would be a lot more money in the pot if the Government cracked down on all those high street firms involved in tax avoidance and stopped introducing initiatives that take from the poor and give to the more well off (Osborne’s actions yesterday, condemned by Institute of Fiscal Studies).

daniel clarke
Cracking down on tax avoidance is just a stupid excuse and it is absolute fantasy that there is £120 billion of avoidance, as people like Mark Serwotka claim. Public sector works shouldn’t rely on great wealth creating british businesses to cushion them in retirement. If public sector workers want a pension, then they should pay for it themselves, not people who haven’t got a pension whatsoever to… Read more »
Rowan
Yes, the wealth of this country ought to be shared out more fairly. But in return for the work they do, considering how hard it is and how important, teachers do not get more than their fair share. It is not people stacking shelves in supermarkets who have the power to take money away from teachers and other public sector workers, but millionaires in the Cabinet on… Read more »
Mr Justice

Shouldn’t this headline read ‘hundreds turn out for rally, thousands more go shopping after nice lay-in’?

Wight Knight

And many went into work because they can’t afford to lose a days pay and ARE grateful to have a job. Only 20% of Unison members voted for the this strike despite what the union will claim. Many also recognise that they too have to make concessions about how their pensions are funded.

Better Red than Bled

You are lucky they have jobs. With out a public sector only the very wealthy would enjoy the standard of living and support our community gives us.

NECH

Yes, I am lucky that they have jobs, but so are they, and they should stop being so selfish and get over the fact than money doesn’t fall out of the sky.

Also, maybe we’d be better off with privatised healthcare… it worked well in America.

keithybaby

Tell that to one of my relatives in the oh so wonderful USA, he couldn’t afford to have his lung disease treated, so had to have the lung removed (it was cheaper)!

Rowan
Privatised healthcare works well in America? What is this nonsense?! Many Americans suffer and even die because their healthcare stops when their insurance cover ran out. There is huge inequality in the USA and many Americans cannot afford to pay the insurance. It is a grossly unfair and inefficient system. People in Britain used to be in the same position before the National Health Service. Most people… Read more »
mark francis
My wife felt a bit overcome by heat in Florida (yeah, I know). The ambulance took her to hospital who recommended she take loads of tests & stay in hospital for 2 weeks- which she did not. When we got back we got a bill for the ambulance, a bill for the doctor, a bill for the nurse, a bill for the physio, a bill for the… Read more »
Better Red than Bled

NECH, I am sorry for taking your first comment seriously. Your next was much funnier though!

kevin murphy
having a job should not be luck, but a right and when you agree to work in exchange for a wage and the conditions of service that go with your job it should be honoured. as for usa health service it costs twice as much as the nhs while not covering all of its citizens,about 40,000,000 of them get the middle finger for their health care and… Read more »
Steve McGoun
Sorry, having a job should be a right? That’s an incredibly ludicrous comment – why on earth should it be a right? Having a job is something people need to want, not think they’re entitled too. They are many people out there that don’t deserve a job and those that strike are amongst them. It’s an utterly absurd situation, while thousands of people don’t have jobs, or… Read more »
No.5

sigh…another victim of ‘divide and conquer’

mark francis

Having a job is only a right in a socialist economy – I am not saying that such an economy works better than a capitalist one, but this is a fact.
Doesn’t look like capitalism is working either at the moment- except for the stinking rich of course.

Better Red than Bled

But it is right for very rich people to put higher sums into pension pots and get tax breaks which come out of the money for services for all. as for the figure on uncollected tax the PCS give a higher figure, 120 million is from oecd I think.

john

All pension contributions are free of tax, yes even the public sectors!

Better Red than Bled

And the people that benefit from these tax breaks most are the people with large pensions, who are mostly private sector bosses that have closed their own employee schemes.

Senior Service

Regardless of the rights and wrongs, as I contribute to their wages and they weren’t paid yesterday, can I have a refund please?!

No.5

only if you come around and save my life when I have a heart attack

Better Red than Bled

There’s the rub. Nearly all of these pensions are fully funded and are projected to cost a smaller percentage of GDP in future years. Cameron wants the money for tax cuts for his buddies, who he is also lining up to privately run the public services for their profit.

Rowan
I’m saddened that there are people who think that because people in the private sector have had decent working conditions, including decent pensions, taken away from them, that all public sector workers should be made to suffer as well. Wouldn’t it be better to support the principle that the conditions written down in people’s contracts ought to be honoured? Wouldn’t it be good if people could agree… Read more »
Jackie

Remember when Teachers, Policemen, Police staff,Ambulance staff, Nurses, Midwives, Doctors and Fireman crashed the stock market, wiped out Banks, took billions in bonuses and paid no tax?
No, me neither.

john

maybe not, but Gordon Brown did when he destroyed private pensions by robbing the funds to waste on the public sector.

No.5

Really….isn’t that what cockcameron is doing by implementing ( stealing from Labour) building new infrastructure projects.

Poor old Tories, not a lot left in the propaganda box

No.5

and they don’t ‘rob’ the funds…every government whatever colour tie, have ‘invested’ pension money in schemes….it took a banking collapse to mean those funds where ‘lost’ in the short term

Lars Torders
I just think the government should take a leaf out of the private sector that they are so fond of referring to. Most large companies closed their final salary pension schemes to new members as they would have become unaffordable. New people signed up to a newer reduced benefits scheme. This meant that the people who had contracted under the original scheme had their pensions protected and… Read more »
Richard Smith
If, like me, your private pension was abused by Equitable Life ( for those unaware, 20% of our savings were simply removed from individual pension ‘pots’) you’ll know how fragile this Ponzi scheme ( pensions) really is. How does anyone propose to square this particular circle, less youngsters in work to support ( pay taxes) into a scheme with ever increasing numbers claiming at the end of… Read more »
adrian nicholas
Respect & thanks to all those who marched. One notes that the chancellor day before, Osborne decided to cut another 5bn from public sector – for infrastructure – yet has cut back by 2/3rd HCA funding to LA’s & HA’s for affordable housing. Some 5 weeks ago- he gave 4bn in funds to big business for development including some 2.5m to JCB and other non-uk ‘based’ corporates.… Read more »
outofstep

Blaming capitalists hardly addresses the inappropriateness of striking during a crisis. Analogous to the mineworkers strike during the second world war?

Better Red than Bled

If the crisis is caused by capitalists do you not think arguing to stop going hell for leather down the same path is not a valid thing to do. This strike was one phrase in that argument!

No.5

which I had a crisis that allowed me to spend £600,000,000 on a pet project with an unknown outcome ( free schools) I’d be very happy.

This ‘crisis’ is being stage managed to allow for Tory long term policy to be implemented…and apparently we are all falling for it

playingthenumbers
The hilarity some find in union bashing really misses the wider economic implications of the Gov’s proposed deal. Even when ignoring for a moment the ins & outs of workers being paid (now or deferred) what they were contracted and fighting the urge to remind everyone that the £6bn paid in bonuses to bankers last year was funded directly from the taxpayer, (because it was contracted). I… Read more »
Communist
It’s an old argument that labour is a cost. Labour is the producer of wealth so it is not a cost on production. Other things are a cost against the added value created by labour. Investors and capitalists claim against the added value in the form of profit. If capitalist claims are restricted, wages and pensions can increase. Wages are a claim against the added value that… Read more »
playingthenumbers
Communist, I agree. The point I was making was one of the immediate headline liquidity in the economy. Maybe this extract from the good news quarterly, (office of national statistics economic review – November 2011) says it better? “Growth in the third quarter has tended to be concentrated in particular components of each of the three measures, indicating that growth is not broad based. Expenditure growth was… Read more »
Asite2c
I find it strange so many people wish to attack public sector workers when they are doing such a good job, often under stressful conditions. Instead of believing all the right wing, bullying propaganda of this government, people should support and appreciate the good public servants bring to society. Chief among them being health, ambulance fire and rescue services, crime and education. Can you imagine a day… Read more »
No.5

I think that day is next wednesday.

bravo the strikers…better men and women that the critics on here and elsewhere…where would those in the private sector be without doctors, nurses, dustman, teachers…..

Brave enough to criticise, until they are ill or can’t afford private healthcare and education.

Or maybe they are already retired on full pensions

shallow shallow people

Mr Justice

What people want are decent services at affordable cost. None of it is rocket science. The state either locally or nationally rarely delivers anything efficiently. When it does, it is not at reasonable cost.

No.5

but we voted in a Tory coalition…won’t be getting any of those soon.

If you want decent services..look at the Scandanavian Model…high standard of living and high taxes….pay peanuts get monkeys

Don Smith

But how would you cope with those frozen winters?
South of France for me, I hate the cold.

Richard Smith
I don’t know how much time you’ve spent in the Northern Countries – but yes, they pay high taxes but they get a high standard of return for the investment. I call this a ‘socialist but acceptable’ taxation system. They trust their system, and are, it must be said slightly reluctantly, happy(ish) to pay high taxes as a result. The problem in the UK is this, tax… Read more »
Rowan
What’s the evidence that the public sector is more inefficient than the private sector? And what do you mean by inefficient in this context? And what does inefficiency or lack of it have to do with pensions? I agree that the Isle of Wight Council is not run as efficiently as it could be. Almost all the people doing the actual work at the bottom of the… Read more »
mark francis

Which is better public or private?
Perhaps we should ask our friend with the Equitable Life pension…

Mr Justice
As ever, this topic drifted way off into the usual bash the Tory nonsense. Allow me to sum up? Despite it proven to be no longer unaffordable, the public-sector workers think they should keep something that no-one else has. They don’t want to contribute a penny more to it, nor take a penny less from it, regardless of the economic mess the WORLD now finds itself in.… Read more »
playingthenumbers
To answer your simplistic question; as a simple worker, you too have to opportunity to take it up your contributions with your employer if you so wish & negotiate yourself a better pension. If you are valuable enough, possess the necessary skills and are productive, I am sure that the boss will be only too delighted. If there is the slightest feeling that this might be intimidating,… Read more »
No.5

£600,000,000 for free schools is unaffordable…but they push on

PAUL MULLERY
During my carerr in the 70’s throught o the 90’s, when the private sector was having 6% pay rises the government told the public sector it could not have the same because we had to set an example. When the economy was on the way down we couldn’t have a decent pay rise because the counry couldn’t afford it. Anyway, according to Jeremy Clarkson we should be… Read more »
mark francis

In these difficult and harsh economic times it is important that we go for the most cost effective option – either shoot 2 million public sector workers or 1 Jeremy Clarkson.
hmm…when you consider that the Police & Army are public sector workers its even more of a no-brainer.

Who’d miss him?

mark francis

Only joking.

Asite2c

Clarkson reminds me of a tall, spoilt school bully who has not grown up and still loves playing with toys. Put him in a school uniform and cap, then he would certainly look the part.

Don Smith

Cutting off head head would be far better; then he could not make all the stupid and adverse comments that his LARGE HEAD is responsible for.

Rowan
What Jeremy Clarkson said wasn’t clever and it wasn’t funny. But Jeremy Clarkson will be safe whenever he does crash (probably only a matter of time). He may be far more offensive than Richard Hammond, who is only alive today because of public sector workers, but I’m sure he’d be looked after just as well. There may be a few exceptions, but most medical staff, unlike many… Read more »
Eton rifle
Not sure you are serious? Did lorry drivers make a killing in banking or property development? Bus drivers? Shop workers, factory workers, driving instructors perhaps? You keep comparing £35,000 – 60,000 a year teachers with bankers or captain’s of industry. That is a ludicrous comparison. The average British skilled worker, earns less in the private sector than a feather bedded public sector worker. That is before your… Read more »
Rowan
No of course most people who work in the private sector are not the people who caused the financial crisis. That’s precisely why I think we need to see that ordinary people in both the private and the public sector need to defend decent working conditions form the rapacious people who take more than their fair share. I agree with you that it is appalling that union… Read more »
theholyneutron
For God’s sake. I agree some public sector salaries are inflated but let’s just stick to teachers for a moment as you’re so very keen to line them up first for the firing squad. The question is not whether A teacher is worth £35K but whether the role of teacher is worth £35K. The moment you personalize according to your experience of Miss X or Mr.Y you… Read more »
No.5

the inevitable response is one of agreement….the minority response may not be so :)

Eton rifle
Bob Crow recently managed to secure London tube drivers an annual salary of £50,000. It is accepted that it takes just six months to train a driver. It is also accepted that modern technology allows drivers to be completely removed from tube trains. To spare London the stress and inconvenience of strikes, so far, the driver’s remain in their cabs. A few points; How, other than by… Read more »
Rowan
‘Just’ six months to train a train driver? That’s a lot longer than most jobs. And what about the responsibility involved? If a train driver gets it wrong then hundreds of people could die. But whatever the rights and wrongs of what train drivers actually earn (I suspect the £50k may include overtime) I can’t see the point of arguing detailed stuff about what particular worthwhile jobs… Read more »
Rowan
‘Until and unless all of us can get the same or a similar retirement deal, no-one should have it.’ Sorry, Eton rifle, but I don’t follow the logic of this opinion. If people campaigning for democracy in this country had followed that logic, then none of us now would have the vote. Wouldn’t it be nice instead if people who don’t have a decent pension deal could… Read more »
No.5

sorry Rowan…you are talking to deaf people in blue ties

Eton rifle

State worker pension contributions come from taxpayers – local and national.

Your unique gold plated pensions make the rest of us poorer because WE ARE PAYING FOR IT!

Rowan
Sorry Eton Rifle, but why _’Your’_ ‘unique gold plated pensions’? (I would also object to the tabloid-cliche of ‘gold-plated’, like Jeremy Clarkson’s ‘gilt-edged’ version, but it’s such a cliche now I can’t be bothered.) Why assume that the only people who might support a decent pension for public sector workers are themselves public sector workers? And why say ‘WE ARE PAYING FOR IT!’? Anybody who pays taxes… Read more »
PAUL MULLERY
Eton, you are also paying into million pound pension pots when you shop in supermarkets and other commerial chains through you bill. Are you complaining to the management at TESCO’s Morrisons, Sainsbury and all the other large organisations about paying into their pension pots? If you feel so bad about contributing to other peoples’ pensions, ask for a percentage off your bills. After all, your shopping bill… Read more »
Eton rifle

As we all know, it is the FINAL SALARY element that is causing the worsening problem. TESCO employees, like almost all others, do not enjoy such privilege.

Rowan
Sorry, Eton rifle, yet another PS! ‘Public sector workers are claiming a pension that is not affordable.’ Can the person who claimed that decent pensions are not affordable be trusted? When we’re talking about the opinion of the Chancellor, who gave away almost half a billion pounds worth of Northern Rock to Richard Branson – to take just one example – I can’t trust what he claims… Read more »
mark francis

I can’t play the piano but I don’t think that nobody else should be allowed to, until I can.

Eton rifle

As has been written again and again, the employers contribution to state worker pensions is too high. It is this and life expectancy that renders them unaffordable. It is not just the size of the existing pot and future returns.

Ask yourself, why did private enterprise , even the best employers close all final salary schemes in recent decades?

Rowan
Call me cynical, but I believe that the worst private sector employers took money from their employees’ pension funds because they could get away with it to give more money to themselves and the shareholders (Robert Maxwell wasn’t the only one). Your comment about the best private sector employers is a valid one though. If people live longer and are unhealthier and need more healthcare in their… Read more »
No.5

I remember in the 80’s when the (Tory) government allowed employees to op out of NI schemes…hordes of pension salesmen decended on hapless young people and talked them into pensions they would never see because, a week after signing, they blew their wages at the pub and the standing order bounced.

I’m doomed ( for my stupidity) to work until I die

Mr J
I remember the recent British airways strike being partially about pensions. The gist was that future employees will get less than those currently serving. BA has a final salary scheme, it was closed decades ago, yet the airline was still described as a ‘flying pension fund’ – so vast are its liabilities to present and former staff. Despite knowing this, the unions fought the employer – almost… Read more »
Rowan

Not all unions are the same. Not all arguments between workers, their unions and employers are the same.

I don’t know enough about the BA dispute to comment, but as far as I’m aware the BA case and the current public sector pension dispute are not really comparable.

Eton rifle

No, you are right. Nothing compares with the largesse enjoyed by the public sector.

BA was nationalised – no doubt that is why their employees did once benefit from a final salary scheme funded by taxpayers.

Rowan
Sorry, Eton Rifle, but how can you claim that nothing compares to the largesse of the public sector?! How many public sector workers get millions for a job which is basically gambling? How many public sector workers get millions in bonuses on top of a ‘basic’ salary of millions? Back to reality. There’s a good report out from the New Economics Foundation on why the rich are… Read more »
RTUC
Top Directors’ Pension Pots Increase to £3.9million Trades Union Congress, September 2011 Directors of the UK’s top companies have amassed pension pots worth an average of £3.9 million, according to the TUC’s ninth annual PensionsWatch survey. PensionsWatch, which analyses the pension arrangements of 362 directors from the FTSE 100 companies, shows that the average transfer value (pension pot) for a director’s defined benefit (DB) pension is £3.91… Read more »
Mr J

Again, you insist on comparing public sector workers to top directors. Why?

If you don’t make fair comparisons, you cannot argue the case for better pensions. At present, a Tesco checkout operator is, through taxation paying the pension contributions of state sector workers. He or she cannot hope to enjoy the same benefit, therefore it cannot be fair.

RTUC
Women and Pensions Trades Union Congress, November 2011 This briefing sets out some of the key public, private and state pension issues that are of particular relevance to women. Pensioner Poverty Women are already at a disadvantage with regard to state pensions and are more likely to face pensioner poverty than men. Nearly two thirds of women pensioners rely on Pensions Credit. Until 1993 many women were… Read more »
PAUL MULLERY
You’re wasting your time RTUC, you are conversing with the mean-spirited who have always wanted public services for free. They don’t mind being ripped off by the private sector through their shopping bills. They will pay for private sector pensions, profit shares, bonuses,company cars and a host of other perks without complaint. The public sector, however, is supposed to be comprised of suckers who will sweep the… Read more »
mark francis

Hate clowns.
Doesn’t everybody?

Mr Sandown Sally

She had already paid your wages – throgh her taxes. Who do you think funds colleges?

No.5

and thats the way it should be

student union

errr. the students fund the colleges/universities, don’t they? Else why am I having to go into debt to pay for my education?

Mr J

Sorry student union, even at the new rate, you will pay but a fraction of the cost of your university education – and then only if you earn a small fortune.

I advise working in the public sector when you qualify, should you wish to repay us taxpayers :)

Better Red than Bled

Mr SS is obviously in favour of free universal education!