“Among the bravest men and women in the UK,” was how striking PCS members who are outsourced cleaners and caterers working at Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy were described by PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka at a rally in Westminster.
There was huge support for the strikers, employed at BEIS by ISS and Aramark, who have been on indefinite strike since 15 July in their campaign to be paid the London Living Wage, at Tuesday (3) night's People’s Assembly general election now rally in Parliament Square.
To loud applause and cheers Mark told the large crowd about the low-paid workers’ plight: “These workers provide some of the best food that you could wish to see, and put it on the plates of Tory ministers, and the great and the good who visit the department and yet many of them have to go to the union room where we set up a food bank because their private contractor hadn’t paid them properly or on time. Now if you need a signal of just how unequal this country is, it is government workers feeding the rich and famous and going to a foodbank to feed their families.”
This week the cleaners and caterers have been joined by receptionists, security guards, porters and post room staff employed at BEIS by ISS and Aramark, are taking two weeks’ action until 13 September.
Mark Serwotka will address BEIS picket lines tomorrow (5) morning, to show support for the dispute.
From the week beginning 30 September, workers will take rolling strike action which will take the form of one week on strike and one week off.
How you can help
- Donate to the PCS Fighting Fund, which supports striking members, either with a one-off payment or with a regular donation of £2 a month
- Use our e-action to email secretary Andrea Leadsom.
- Send messages of support by email to email@example.com
- Visit the strikers on the picket line at 1 Victoria Street, London, SW1H 0ET, in place from 7:30 – 10:30am each morning.
- Raise the issue with your MP either by email or at their constituency office.
Article updated at 4.44pm on 4 September to mention Mark Serwotka's latest visit to the picket line.