Strikes at the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
We agreed to send solidarity and a donation to strikers at our branch meeting on Tuesday night.
Unite members are joining colleagues from the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union in a stoppage today, with a further one-day strike scheduled for Wednesday 16 November. The strike action follows a mismanaged restructuring exercise with the continued threat of compulsory redundancies.
Members are fearful that the cuts over the next four years will lead to less support for victims of discrimination and undermine the watchdog’s ability to effectively challenge hate crime at a time when it’s on the rise.
The 25 per cent cuts will see caseworkers and other frontline staff supporting victims of discrimination axed and the closure of the commission’s offices in Birmingham, Edinburgh, Leeds and Newcastle.
Need to step back from redundancies
Commenting Unite national officer Siobhan Endean said: “The EHRC’s chief executive needs to step back from the threat of compulsory redundancies and savage cuts which will force dedicated staff out of the organisation.
“These latest cuts will leave the commission toothless and unable to deliver its mandate to enforce the law and protect human rights.
“The closure of offices and cutting of case workers will restrict access to support and justice for those suffering discrimination, as well as undermining the watchdog’s ability to take forward its work programme.
“Our members will be striking to defend the vital services they deliver and the ability of the commission to challenge hate crime and discrimination.”
There will be picket lines outside the EHRC’s offices in Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, London and Manchester.