Saturday, 19 February 2011

Cuts in RCT - Demo today

At 11.30 today, Ynysangharad Park in Pontypridd will be host to a demonstration against the cuts.

"The Demonstration has been called by RCT UNISON Branch & is supported by PCS, UNITE, GMB, Pontypridd Trades Council, Right To Work South Wales and many more.

Contrary to what some Labour councillors have told local people, Plaid Cymru has not supported any of the moves to downgrade workers' terms and condidtions. We opposed the original motion which handed decision-making to council officers and we have opposed their heavy-handed tactics since.

In response to feedback that we have received from people who have been told that Plaid supported these decisions we have issued the following statement and we will be aupporting the demonstration today.

Sera Evans-Fear, Treorci councillor and Plaid Assembly candidate in the Rhondda said:

Ed Milliband and Carwyn Jones will be at the Welsh Labour annual conference while workers in RCT are demonstrating against decisions taken by their party members. They must be asked whether they agree with the downgrading of workers' terms and conditions in RCT? Are they really happy with a Labour council initiating lockouts of unions; forcing workers to take a pay cut in an area which is blighted by low pay? What would they have to say if this was being done by a Tory council? My guess is that they would be outraged.

I know from speaking to council workers that they are very angry about this issue. They feel badly let down by their Labour councillors and have had nothing but a wall of silence from their Labour AM and Labour MP.

The Labour conference is taking place as far away from this rally as possible. Whatever the geographical distance, as party leaders, Ed Milliband and Carwyn Jones have to be held accountable for the actions of this Labour council in bullying their hard-working staff.”

Leanne Wood AM said:

Workers and their trades unions are sending a very clear statement today. The cuts should not be paid for by those on the lowest incomes who had no hand in the cause of this financial crisis. The cuts that are being imposed by this Labour-run council are unacceptable. Other councils in Wales have managed to balance their books without bulldozing through slashed pay and conditions. Elsewhere in Wales, councils have managed to keep council tax rises low, at 0% in some cases, while Labour in RCT have increased council tax by 3%. How are council workers who are forced to take a £3,000 year pay cut meant to afford a council tax increase like this as well as the general rise in prices brought about by inflation and the rise in VAT? I have spoken to many workers who are not prepared to take this attack lying down and I fully support them."

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