British airports, schools, hospitals and government offices are facing disruption today as public sector workers go on strike in the UK’s biggest mass walkout for a generation.
Unions are opposed to government plans to make their members pay more and work longer to earn their pensions.
Lucy Moreton from the Immigration Services Union said:
“Our members feel that they have no choice; this is the first time that this trade union is taking industrial in the 30 years that we have been in existence. It’s something that is a matter of deep regret. No one wants to do this but we did not have had our voice listened to at any point.”
As many as 90 per cent of schools could be forced to close due to striking teachers while courts, job centres, council services and refuse collections will also be affected.
The government says the industrial action will achieve nothing but inconvenience for many. It is sticking by its pension reform plans – pensions that it says few in the private sector can enjoy.
But after yesterday’s budget forecasts for six years of austerity, today’s strike could mark the start of a spell of stormy relations between unions and the government.