Bigger strike is needed to improve pensions

Your review of April 2011 reports “Derbyshire residents marked the marriage of Royal couple William and Kate”.

The whole country enjoyed a day off work apart from public sector workers in the NHS, emergency services and others who have to keep working even when banks and businesses are closed.

In November you reported the public sector workers’ strike over pensions “cost the Derbyshire economy an estimated £7m, according to business leaders.”

According to the employers’ organisation, the Confederation of British Industry, an extra bank holiday would cost the economy £6bn. We’re getting another one this year for the Diamond Jubilee.

Using the same formula as the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Trade (which gave the £7m cost for November 30) the royal wedding cost Derbyshire £81.6m. Why didn’t business leaders complain about that? Partly because their figure is rubbish, based on distorted Government figures that don’t include the ‘saving’ to the public purse of two million strikers not being paid for the day.

But mainly these business leaders defend the system that has robbed most private sector workers of decent pensions, boosting profits.

The Government wants to drive us all to the bottom. If public sector workers defend their pensions it would encourage private sector workers to fight to defend theirs. That’s what worries the bosses!

Trade unions must step up the fight for fair pensions for all. Another national strike is needed and on a bigger scale than November 30.

Jon Dale

Socialist Party, Bolsover