Nick, a social worker, reports on the picket line at one social services office: “55 pickets, militant and very bouyant mood at the picket, singing ‘I’d rather be a picket than a scab’. Lots of passing motorists honked in support including a Royal Mail van and most of the buses. One scab made a complaint that the pickets were being intimidating but when this was shared, those on the picket line continued to sing and chat. The only aggressive thing was the scab driving fast towards the picket line and the scale of the council cuts!”
Social workers and other staff then joined a march through the city which Birmingham City Council had tried to prevent. The Council yesterday told the TUC they would charge £10,000 for the march through Birmingham City Centre even though the march against the Lib Dem conference just 6 weeks ago cost a few hundred pounds.
However the strikers defied this deeply undemocratic attempt to stop the march. 15 thousand people joined the protest through the streets of the city, marching to the TUC rally at the NIA.
Nick has also recorded a number of short audio clips of interviews with strikers explaining why they took action today and what we need to do to win. We will make these available soon on the SWAN website.