The strike in the United Kingdom is gaining steam

InternationalDec 13 ’22 at 12:14Modified on 22 Dec ’22 at 10:05Author of the book: Mark van Hareveldt

The United Kingdom has largely stalled as a result of a wave of strikes that are expected to last longer and are being supported and organized by unions across many sectors. Health and education workers are on strike throughout December and railway workers are also on strike from today. Only 20 percent of services are expected to run.

‘For the next month, someone’s life will be affected every day’

Railway workers will stop work today and around 100,000 nurses will go on strike from Thursday. Postal workers and ambulance workers are demanding that their wages be kept in line with inflation. (ANP / EPA / Andy Rain)

According to reporter Leah van Begoven, it was the largest strike action in a generation. ‘Everybody will notice something in the coming days, because practically every day for the next month someone’s life will be interrupted somewhere.’ Railway workers will stop work today and around 100,000 nurses will go on strike from Thursday. Postal workers and ambulance workers are demanding that their wages be kept in line with inflation.

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‘Millions of workers in the UK, all of whom want a pay rise they haven’t had for years, are now being crushed by rising energy and food costs, with wages still at 2008 levels.’

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Scotland

According to Van Bekoven, these wage demands will be honored in some regions. In Scotland, many strikers have called off the strike because the Scottish government wants to go further than London. Scots are willing to pay more than inflation, but less than the strikers are demanding.

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However, the British government did not want to go that far and, according to van Beckhoven, blocked everything and left the negotiations to the employers. Nurses want a 5 per cent rise above 11 per cent inflation, but the government is sticking to 4.5 per cent. Although the nurses said they were ready to negotiate, the British government was not interested.

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Holy cow

Van Begoven thinks that London hopes that popular support will soon wane as the strike continues. But there is great support in the case of nurses. ‘The NHS is a sacred cow and is held in high esteem. Everyone knows the same NHS is on life support and has barely functioned because of little investment in it for the last 12 years. People die waiting 19 hours for an ambulance or lying on a stretcher on the sidewalk for 24 hours. Everyone sees how hard nurses work, and those healthcare workers have a lot of understanding.

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