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Many services to come to a halt following strike action

By Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: July 09, 2014

By Leslie Jackson

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THOUSANDS of workers across the district are to stage a one day strike.

The industrial action tomorrow, Thursday, comes after UNISON union members who work in local government and schools voted for strike action in a dispute over pay.

The union said that low paid workers have faced a three year pay freeze and have now been offered a one per cent pay rise.

The National Union of Teachers (NUT) are also joining with local government unions UNITE, GMB and the fire service union (FBU) in strike action.

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The day's protest could will see many public buildings closed. It will affect council workers, schools and firefighters.

UNISON General Secretary, Dave Prentis, said: "These workers care for our elderly, clean our streets, feed and educate our school children and keep our libraries running, but they receive no recognition in their pay packets.

"They are mainly low paid women workers, stressed and demoralised, and they deserve better from their employers and from this Government. This is the group that has borne the brunt of the Government's austerity agenda.

"We are now discussing next steps. But we call on the employers to get back into talks to agree a fair deal for local government and school support workers".

The Fire Brigade Union (FBU) has also announced it will be joining the strike in its dispute over pensions with industrial actions running between 10am and 7pm.

Peter Dartford, Staffordshire's chief fire officer, called for people to take extra care following the announcement of a further FBU strike. Mr Dartford said: "I would reiterate previous calls for extra vigilance during the forthcoming strike. The FBU has announced that it will strike alongside other public sector unions on July 10, meaning that many local government services will be affected.

"As before, we will be putting contingency plans in place to provide the best possible emergency response cover.

"However, I would urge residents to be aware that our emergency response capacity will be reduced and, therefore, it will not be business as usual.

"Ensure your smoke alarms are in good working order and take extra care while at home and on the roads."

It will be the ninth round of strike action to be held since the dispute between the FBU and the Government began last September over pensions.

More than 2,000 civil servants from the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) in Staffordshire will also join other public sector workers taking strike action.

Andrew Lloyd, Midlands Regional secretary for the PCS said, "Ministers praise public servants for their hard work and dedication, but at the same time they are slashing their living standards.

"Instead of warm words, public sector workers need a pay rise."

A spokesman for Staffordshire Moorlands District Council said: "Council services may be affected on Thursday July 10 as a result of the national industrial action.

"The extent of this will not be known until the morning of that day when staffing levels are established."

The Fire Brigade Union has also announced they will strike on eight consecutive days later this month

Strikes will take place on Monday 14 July: 6am–8am and 5pm–7pm; Tuesday 15 July: 6am–8am and 5pm–7pm; Wednesday 16 July: 6am–8am and 5pm–7pm; Thursday 17 July: 6am–8am and 5pm–7pm; Friday 18 July: 6am–8am and 11am–1pm; Saturday 19 July: 11am–1pm and 11pm–1pm; on Sunday 20 July: 7pm–9pm; and Monday 21 July: 6am–8am and 5pm–7pm.

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