Unions to Ballot Members For Strike Action Over Pensions

A number of trade unions are currently balloting their members to see if they would support strike action over the Government's pensions schemes, particular its plans to reform public sector pensions. Unison, GMB and Unite are all set to ballot their members after the Trades Union Congress unanimously backed a motion calling for coordinated strike action. This means that around 1.65 million members will be balloted in the coming weeks over whether or not to carry out a strike action that would start in November and last until summer 2012. The current government are arguing that the current public services pension model is unaffordable, however the unions argue that changes made by the previous government makes them affordable in the long term. TUCĀ general secretary Brendan Barber commented "Ministers have to come to the table with new ideas, and in a new spirit, to give those talks a chance to succeed. If those talks cannot make a breakthrough, unions are right and fully justified to plan for action." Unison general secretary Dave Prentice said his union would ballot its 1.1 million members. He added "Now is the time to make our stand. It will be hard. We will be vilified, attacked, set against each other, public versus private, divide and rule. The oldest trick in the book."
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