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EPSU unions will join forces on 30 November

(17 November 2011) Last week we held our 4Oth Executive Committee. This gathering of the elected representatives of public sector trade unions from across the European continent was marked again by debates on the crisis that is hitting Europe’s people’s.

Public services and public service workers remain the main target of arbitrary austerity measures and EPSU decided to mobilise once more to defend jobs, quality public services and a social Europe. This time, we want to do it jointly. On November 30th hundreds of thousands of public sector workers from Portugal to Russia and from Britain to Greece will be striking, marching, protesting, picketing, debating, informing… to defend public services and to speak out loudly: “Another Europe is possible”.

The date will coincide with the announced public sector strike in Britain over pensions, but the crisis is not spearing anyone: Portuguese unions will stage another one-day General Strike on November 24th , Belgium’s trade unions are preparing themselves for another action on December 2nd. As you will see in the articles other countries such as the Czech Republic are also mobilizing for wages, we will collect as much information possible for you to know what other colleagues are doing in the run up to the 30 November action. The moment for coordinated mobilization has certainly arrived.

On the other side of the Atlantic we have seen that mobilization and struggle pay off. We saw the wave of solidarity for public sector workers in Ohio when their collective bargaining rights were taken away. Last week the public sector unions and public sector workers won a landmark victory. On November 8th a referendum rejected taking away their right to strike. The people of Ohio have given a clear signal that our struggle is the right one. We must continue to defend a society that is fair, democratic and where collective and social rights are not subordinated to the whims of the markets.

In solidarity

Carola Fischbach-Pyttel