NSSN 411: 30,000 march for Scottish teachers’ pay

For the second successive week, we headline the NSSN bulletin with a mass mobilisation of Scottish workers. Last Saturday, 30,000 teachers and supporters marched in Glasgow as part of the pay campaign by the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) teaching union. The EIS demonstration took place just days after the incredible 8,000-strong Unison and GMB Equal Pay strike by women workers in Glasgow City Council.

EIS pay demo2

This statement is from the EIS website:-

30,000 marchers send clear message to government on teachers’ pay (29 Oct)

An incredible 30,000 people, comprised of teachers from right across Scotland together with parents, children and supporters of Scottish education, brought Glasgow to a standstill to demand that the Scottish Government and local authorities must Value Education and Value Teachers.

The National March and Rally, organised by the EIS was held on Saturday 27 October. Marchers assembled in Kelvingrove Park before marching to George Square for a major rally in support of the EIS Value Education, Value Teachers campaign.

The demonstration was so large that it took over 2 hours from the march off to clear from Kelvingrove Park, with the front of the demo reaching George Square more than an hour before the end of the line arrived. The march stretched for well over 2.5 miles from end to end.

There was a carnival atmosphere as the colourful procession made its way through the some of the city’s most famous streets, with a wide variety of banners and placards on display and some highly creative chants and songs to be heard.

The overall message was abundantly clear – it is time for government to properly Value Education and Value Teachers.

Addressing the Rally in George Square at the end of the March, EIS President Alison Thornton said, “Nine years of pay settlements under the public sector pay cap have resulted in the value of our take home pay being down by nearly 25%.”

“The salaries of teachers in schools in Scotland are below the European average and those of other countries in the wider world. Our pupil contact hours are high, and we still work an average of 11 hours of unpaid overtime each week to deal with the demands of the job.”

“No wonder teacher recruitment and retention is in a crisis situation. Austerity doesn’t work, quality public services need proper funding and by investing in teachers then there is investment in education and our young people and their futures.”

EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said, “It is absolutely magnificent, to look out on this massive demonstration and know that we are here, united, because we believe that the future of Scottish Education is worth standing up and fighting for.”

“Look at the magnificent array of EIS and school banners from across the country, and the banners, also, of other public sector trade unions whose members, like teachers, have been under the cosh of austerity for the past decade. Those who want to split the unions – think again, public sector trade union solidarity is a given.”

“Our pay claim is for 10% – given that the value of take-home pay has dropped by 24% in the last decade, that claim is already a compromise on what we deserve.”

“And here is the simple fact – if you want to have qualified teachers in front of pupils in our schools, you need to address the recruitment and retention crisis we are facing. 10% doesn’t even take us up to the OECD average for teacher pay; Scotland and Scotland’s teachers deserve better.”


The EIS is recommending that the pay offer from the Scottish Government and Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) be rejected. EIS members such as Jim Halfpenny, West Dunbartonshire EIS joint branch secretary (personal capacity) are calling for a strike ballot.



Solidarity for victimised teacher

In a vindictive act, EIS teachers’ union member Victoria Wainwright, a supply teacher, was told that she would never be able to work at her school again after taking solidarity action with the Glasgow Equal Pay strikers.

Victoria refused to cross the picket line. She told the Daily Record: “They said, ‘The head teacher doesn’t want you back – and, moving forward, you are going to find it very difficult to get a job in Glasgow.’

“To me, it sounded quite threatening and like I was being blacklisted.”

The NSSN gives our full support and solidarity to Victoria. Trade unionists must demand her reinstatement and the lifting of any blacklisting. An injury to one is an injury to all.



NSSN news

Video of NSSN TUC Rally on September 9th: ‘General Election to get Tories out!’

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Union News


RMT members standing solid and determined this morning in continuing fight for safety on Northern and South Western Railway‎ (27 Oct) – General Secretary Mick Cash said; ” RMT members are standing solid, determined and united again this morning on both Northern and South Western Railway in the long-running fight for safety, security and access on our trains while the private train companies gamble with their passengers well-being.

Guards and Train Drivers on South Western Railway‎ are instructed to not to book on for any shifts that commence between:-

  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 3rd November 2018
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 10th November 2018 now withdrawn
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 17th November 2018
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 24th November 2018

All RMT Arriva Rail North Conductor, Conductor Instructor and Train Driver members are instructed to not to book on are for any shifts that commence between:-

  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 3rd November 2018
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 10th November 2018 read more

National dispute fund (DOO disputes) – If you would like to donate to the RMT National Dispute Fund which makes payments to support their striking members taking part in National DOO disputes then you can donate via PayPal using the donate button below or make a cheque payable to RMT National Dispute Fund and send it to the address below. Alternatively, you can ring their Freephone helpline on 0800 376 3706 who will be happy to process a credit card payment for you, or, if you would like to pay via internet banking, please email [email protected] for further details. Vicky Thompson, Finance Manager RMT, 39 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD. Tel: 020-7529-8843 read more

RMT Rail Gourmet members strike in Edinburgh in fight for workplace justice (30 Oct) – Rail union RMT said that Rail Gourmet members based at the Edinburgh Depot are taking strike action today in a fight for workplace justice following a comprehensive breakdown in industrial relations. The staff work on the inter-city LNER contract. A ballot for industrial action of all RMT Rail Gourmet members located at Edinburgh Depot returned a magnificent YES vote in favour of taking strike action and action short of a strike. Regrettably, despite the best efforts of RMT Union Representatives trying to resolve the issues at the heart of the dispute, the management side have continued to ignore our members concerns, namely:

  • Bullying and Harassment of Staff
  • Abuse of the Disciplinary Procedures
  • Non Payment of Additional Duties read more

RMT announces 24 hours of strike action on Central Line over breakdown in industrial relations and abuse of procedures – Tube union RMT today confirmed 24 hours of strike action on London Underground’s Central Line over a comprehensive breakdown in industrial relations, a failure to employ enough drivers, a wholesale abuse of agreed procedures and the victimisation of a trade union member. As a result of a total management failure to address the issues RMT has announced the following drivers’ action:

Not to book on for any shifts that commence between:-

  • 00:01 hours and 23:59 hours on Wednesday 7th November 2018 read more

Piccadilly Line tube drivers to strike again in long-running dispute over breakdown in industrial relations – TUBE UNION RMT confirmed today that driver members on the Piccadilly Line will strike again next month in a long-running dispute over the breakdown of industrial relations following the latest phase of action last month which shut the line down for the duration. Members will take action by not booking on for any turns of duty as follows;

Between 12:00 hours on Wednesday 7th November 2018 and 12:00 hours on Thursday 8th November 2018 read more



National Demonstration to Save Libraries, Museums and Culture: Saturday 3 November 2018

As the crisis in our public library service deepens and central Government slashes local council budgets, UNISON is calling a National Demonstration in support of Libraries, Museums and Culture.

The demo and rally, supported by PCS and UNITE will march through central London. Details:

Date: Saturday 3 November

Assemble: 11am – The British Library, Euston Road, London

March: 12noon to Parliament

Finish by 4pm read more

Higher education ballot result: Members vote for action – but turnout fails to meet Trade Union Act threshold (29 Oct) – UNISON members working in higher education in England, Scotland and Wales have voted for industrial action to press their wage claim – but the turnout wasn’t enough to meet the threshold for strikes set out in the 2017 Trade Union Act. That act does not apply in Northern Ireland, and the union is still awaiting the result of its ballot of members there read more

Glasgow equal pay talks resume after successful strike (26 Oct) – Equal pay talks have resumed in Glasgow after this week’s successful strike action by UNISON and GMB members in Scotland’s second city.More than 8,000 union members – overwhelmingly low paid women – took strike action on Tuesday and Wednesday, with 10,000 marching to a rally outside the city hall on the first day of the strike read more

Strike fund donations to:


Sort code 60 83 01 A/c Number 20275789

Drew Rigden Treasurer UNISON Glasgow City Branch

84 Bell Street, Glasgow, G1 1LQTel: 0141-552-7069

read more from Glasgow City Unison Facebook page

Support the striking Birmingham homecare workers – Please send messages of support and donations to Unison Birmingham branch, 46 The Priory Queensway Birmingham  B4 7LR. Email [email protected]    Facebook group – https://www.facebook.com/birminghamunison/

Grimethorpe primary school dinner ladies go on permanent strike – Dinner ladies have gone on permanent strike in a dispute over plans to axe their jobs. Ladywood Primary School, in Grimethorpe, South Yorkshire, has proposed that teaching assistants would supervise meals to save cash. It wants to make all nine school meals supervisory assistant roles redundant which has resulted in six days of strikes by Unison union members read more

Support Camden NSL workers – Camden UNISON members working for private company NSL as traffic wardens recently took 5 days of strike action as part of their fight for decent pay. They are asking for £11.15 an hour, an amount that Camden UNISON believes is very reasonable particularly when the top director at NSL gets over £320 an hour. For updates about the dispute and to send messages of support, contact [email protected]   read more on Camden Unison website



Twelve days of strikes start at Derbyshire crane firm in pay dispute – The first industrial action at a leading Derbyshire crane manufacturer Street Crane for 20 years has started as the company has been unwilling to engage in constructive pay talks…The first of the 24 hour stoppages was on Monday 15 October and followed by strikes on 22 and 29 October and 5 November. If the dispute is not settled by then, four 48 hour stoppages will go ahead on 12, 19 and 26 November and 3 December, all commencing at 00:01 read more

Support striking workers at at Prysmian Cables & Systems in Eastleigh, Hampshire – there have been 24 hour stoppages on 26 September and 3, 10 and 17 October. A work to rule started on 25 September, including an overtime ban read more   Email messages of support and solidarity to [email protected]


Unite and GMB

Unions stage mass rally to save Appledore shipyard – We will not accept the deindustrialisation of our community, and we have already lost far too many skilled well-paid jobs say the unions. Shipbuilding unions GMB and Unite are staging a mass rally in a bid to save Appeldore shipyard. Reports this week suggest a final decision to close Appledore Shipyard could be made by Babcock at a board meeting in November. GMB and Unite and are calling on everyone who supports a future for the yard, and for British shipbuilding and manufacturing in general, to support the protest. Watch video of demonstration by Reel News



Bristol Royal Mail workers walkout in support of sacked postie – postal workers at Bristol Mead Street office took action in defence of Barry Baker see tweet

How the CWU is fighting to Save Our Post Office – and how you can get involved (Oct 25) – The CWU is campaigning to keep post offices open and running in the midst of a controversial programme of closures read more



Welsh college staff vote for strike action over pay and workload (22 Oct) – UCU members in Welsh further education colleges have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action over pay and workload. Nine in ten (91%) UCU members who voted backed strike action over pay, while a similar proportion (90%) voted in favour of strike action over workload. The dispute has arisen after the employer body Colegau Cymru rejected the joint trade unions’ pay claim for a rise of 7.5% or £1,500, instead making a final offer of 1%. The employers have also refused to negotiate on workload issues while the pay dispute is ongoing read more



Enough is Enough: March for Education – Tuesday November 20th. Assemble 5.30pm Westminster Cathedral, Ashley Place, SW1P 1LT London Facebook event



Cultural changes needed at BBC to ensure equal pay and to solve staff grievances, says NUJ (25 Oct) – The NUJ has supported the main findings of a critical report by MPs which said the BBC’s lack of transparency over pay had been “unlawful and discriminatory”, with woman still not being paid the same as male colleagues and not given the same opportunities read more



Read the latest about the Picturehouse dispute on Brixton Ritzy Facebook Page and those of Hackney, Crouch End, Central, Dulwich East and Duke of York Brighton

Donate to the Picturehouse Cinema strike fund: https://www.crowdpac.co.uk/campaigns/250/picturehousestrike



Hundreds march on the ‘Rise of the Precarious Workers’ National Demo on October 30th Facebook event The IWGB and other precarious workers have taken to the streets of London today to demand an end to the assault on their employment rights by bloodsucking bosses and a zombie government. On the day, the IWGB will be facing Uber at the Court of Appeal as part of the ongoing battle over workers’ rights. A victory would put us one step closer to ending the attack on our rights that so-called “gig economy” bosses are conducting with near impunity. This is not just about Uber drivers, but about all of us that are being forced into increasingly more precarious forms of work

NSSN and 'Poetry on the Picket Line' on IWGB demo
NSSN and ‘Poetry on the Picket Line’ on IWGB demo




Other news

Fighting Austerity in Leeds – Conference organised by Leeds TUC

10am-4pm, Saturday 24th November

Swarthmore Education Centre

2-7 Woodhouse Square, Leeds, LS3 1AD Facebook event




Blacklisting & Victimisation

Blacklist Support Group financial appeal: the Blacklist support group is desperately short of funds, to continue the incredible work we need more finance, would you please consider making a donation, raise it at your branches and trade councils. Please make cheques payable to Joint sites committee and send to 70 Darnay Rise Chelmsford Essex CM1 4XA. Please forward onto your contacts many thanks Steve Kelly (JSC Treasurer)

Blacklisted t-shirts available at: https://shop.hopenothate.org.uk/component/hikashop/product/78-blacklisted-t-shirt

Book: http://newint.org/books/politics/blacklisted-secret-war/

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNcgrNs6pB8

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/groups/blacklistSG/

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog





Sri Lanka’s plantation workers take action read more

Poland: Workers at LOT Polish Airlines (PLL LOT) need your support. They have been on strike since 18 October over the intimidation and sacking of trade unionists, unacceptable and dangerous working conditions, and the violation of the Labour Code. During the strike they have been experiencing unprecedented victimisation.

They are demanding:

  • an end to intimidation and victimisation of the employees
  • the reinstatement of Monika Żelazik, the leader of the Flight and Cabin Crew Union (ZZPPiL), who was unlawfully sacked earlier this year
  • the reinstatement of 67 strikers who have been illegally sacked since the strike began
  • an end to the illegal practice of forcing crew on a mass scale to set up their own businesses – according to Polish law, staff who have the same duties as employees employed on the basis of full-time permanent contracts cannot be forced into self-employment read more







3 National Demonstration to Save Libraries, Museums and Culture – Assemble: 11 a.m. – The British Library, Euston Road, London read more

17 National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism and Racism Central London



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