Second week of ISS strike action begins

02 Dec 2019

HMRC cleaners in Bootle and Liverpool are taking six days strike action, following on from their strikes in September to demand improved pay and conditions.

PCS members employed by private contractor ISS who clean HMRC offices took three days strike action last week and are taking another three days this week.

This group of workers is small but determined in their fight for a living wage and equal terms and conditions to civil servants. Most of the strikers have taken part in the picket lines, where support from civil servants continues to be reflected in generous donations to the strike fund.

Last Wednesday (27 November), a rally at Derby Square in Liverpool received support and solidarity from members of the UCU who are also on strike. Kirsteen Patton of the University of Liverpool Branch told the strikers that “your conditions are our conditions” and spoke of how casualisation and outsourcing is affecting the higher education sector in similar ways to the civil service. The rally also heard speeches from Liverpool Labour Councillor Ann O’Byrne, and from PCS president Fran Heathcote and assistant general secretary John Moloney.

Campaign organiser and NEC member Phil Dickens said, “These workers aren’t taking action in isolation, but as part of a wave of private sector and precarious workers fighting for better across the country. Rather than accept the status quo, and a belief that change is unrealistic, these low-paid members are daring to stand up and fight back. That’s why they deserve our support, all the way to victory.”

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