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CUPE’s national leaders have sent a message of support and solidarity for a nationwide strike of municipal workers to be held July 16-17 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

“We have many members doing these same jobs in every community across Canada,” CUPE leaders wrote to UNISON President Norma Stephenson, a guest at CUPE’s 2007 national convention, and UNISON General Secretary Dave Prentice. “They will be appalled, as we are, to learn of the meagre 2.45 per cent pay offer from the local government employers’ organisation.”

“We know that inflation is running at 4.3 per cent in the United Kingdom, including housing costs. So, the employers’ offer is, in effect, a pay cut. This is unacceptable to any public sector worker and it is unacceptable to us,” the CUPE message said.

The first nationwide UNISON strike in this sector in 2½ years will affect 600,000 members including social workers, librarians, school meals workers, refuse collectors, surveyors and teaching assistants.

For more: http://www.unison.org.uk/paymatters/index.asp .