Teachers Union ballots members on Swinney and COSLA’s “divisive” offer

The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) has begun balloting its members on a ‘final’ pay offer from the Scottish Government and COSLA.

The SSP attended and supported Saturday’s march and rally to support teachers and support workers in their modest demand of 10%.

Today, SSP workplace organiser Richie Venton said: “Like millions of other workers, teachers have been mugged by a succession of Tory and New Labour governments.”

“This is one of only 5 countries in the advanced economies where teachers’ real wages have dropped – by a quarter in the past 10 years, in Scotland’s case.”

“Loss of real pay has made it harder to recruit and retain teachers,

 »

Hammond’s pre-Brexit Budget Fails 8.5 million Workers

SSP is proud to announce its new websiteCommenting on Philip Hammond’s budget SSP spokesman Colin Fox said;

“This is a pre-Brexit giveaway budget designed to put pressure on dissident MP’s Remainers and Brexiteers alike on the spot ahead of a likely Westminster vote in December.”

“Chancellor Philip Hammond promises to find £20bn more for the NHS over the next 5 years, £2bn more for mental health services, £420m for potholes and tax cuts for millions but only if Parliament votes for Theresa May’s Brexit deal negotiated with the EU next month. Otherwise all bets are off.

His increase in the minimum wage from £7.83 to £8.21/hour still leaves 8.5 million people on poverty pay. The Government has already conceded that workers need to earn £10 an hour to pay their own rent,

 »

The Biggest Ever Equal Pay Strike

by Richie Venton, SSP national workplace organiser – reporting from the Glasgow strike

There’s no exaggeration in these words from a woman who works in the language unit for kids. 8,000 members of Unison and GMB unions on strike for equal pay, mostly women, makes it the biggest action of its kind, ever, in the UK.

Every one of the city’s hundreds of primary schools and nurseries were shut down – a timely reminder of the critical role in children’s education played by these workers – and care services severely disrupted, but with the unions ensuring ‘life and limb’ cover for the most vulnerable service users.

A huge proportion of the 8,000 marched through the city centre.

 »

Equal Pay Strike: pay up now!

Richie Ventonby Richie Venton

Over 7,500 Glasgow city council workers — overwhelmingly women — are set to strike next week for equal pay, after 12 years of brutal discrimination.

Staff in education and Cordia feel they’ve had enough of being treated like second class citizens. There are 13,000 equal pay claims already. “We’ve had our marches, meetings, TV appearances. The only thing left to get pay justice is strike action”, as one woman told us.

The pent up rage at being paid less than mostly male workers in refuse collection — which was deemed work of equal value in the council’s 2006 Pay and Benefits Review — has led to unprecedented majorities in the September strike ballots.

 »

SSP backs Unions Demand for Publicly Owned ScotRail

SSP National spokesperson Colin Fox today backed criticism of Scottish Transport Minister Michael Matheson for remarks in which he said a publicly owned ScotRail cannot happen until 2025 – at least. Mr Matheson’s predecessor – Humza Yousaf – stated that Scottish Ministers have already set up a company to step in and take over the ScotRail contract if so needed.

Fox said:

“I travelled on Scotrail’s ‘flagship’ service yesterday the expensive Glasgow-Edinburgh line. Not only did the 40 year old train not have Wi-Fi, or a socket for my laptop, or catering it didn’t even have a working toilet! The service offered by Abellio-Scotrail is no better than the many other failing operators down South.

 »

Fast Food Strike – to win a living wage and union dignity

Thousands of workers are taking part in hospitality sector strikes.

The Bakers union (BFAWU), War on Want and Unite Hospitality are campaigning for workers’ rights and ending poverty pay.

McDonald’s, Wetherspoons and TGI Fridays workers announced renewed strike action. Striking over tips, poverty pay – for a £10 an hour living wage – and for union recognition on the same day. Uber Eats couriers are on strike in protest over a cut in the rates for deliveries – with demands of £5 per drop & £1 per mile. Deliveroo couriers will join them in taking action.

SSP national spokesperson Colin Fox offered fraternal greetings to the Edinburgh solidarity protest.

 »

Glasgow South Open Day – “Celebrate the Past, Change the Future”

Glasgow South SSP held a hugely successful open day on Saturday the 29th September in the Kinning Park Complex. The loose theme was “Celebrate the past, change the future” and the day consisted of stalls, music, film and workshops all accompanied by much conversation and tea.

Our initial aim for the event was to create an open and inclusive environment for dialogue, debate and discussion amongst party members, potential members and activists across the Southside, in an informal and non-structured setting. Additionally, we also hoped to reconnect with branch members who haven’t been able to be involved in recent branch activities and, hopefully, to recruit new members to the party.

Despite a few hiccups with the promotional strategy,

 »

Labour Conference Adopts Policy Pioneered by the SSP

by Richie Venton

Hot on the heels of the TUC congress unanimously adopting the pioneering new policy of a guaranteed minimum 16-hour working week – instead of the abomination of zero and short-hours contracts – so too has the Labour Party conference, in a composite Motion on In-Work Poverty, moved by my union Usdaw, seconded by the GMB.

If acted upon, this could be a lifeline to millions of workers subjected to insecure, low-paid jobs, dependency on foodbanks, and mounting mental ill-health.

So it’s immensely welcome that the Corbyn-led Labour conference has overwhelmingly agreed a policy pioneered and spearheaded by socialists outside Labour – specifically, the SSP!!

To avoid any confusion,

 » Read more »