November 30th will be remembered as the day when the sleeping giant, the British working class, rose up.
Almost 3 million workers struck and brought much of the country to a halt. While Cameron might want to call it a damp squib he knows that most schools closed, hospitals were on emergency cover, councils shut down and hundreds of thousands of strikers and their supporters joined demonstrations in towns and cities across Britain.
This was the biggest women’s strike in British history.
Thousands of workplaces were picketed, with many large and militant pickets.
Hundreds of marches and rallies were held across the country, with fantastic turnouts.
London had 50,000 people on the streets.
Reports from other cities are equally impressive: Manchester 25,000, Birmingham 15,000, Glasgow 30,000, Dundee 10,000, Newcastle 7,000, Leicester 7,000, Nottingham 8,000, Sheffield 10,000, Southampton 4,000, Oxford 6,000, Hull 3,000, Portsmouth 3,000, Coventry 3,000, York 2,500, Lincoln 1,000.
Everywhere there are stories of fantastic solidarity.
Electricians protested against attacks on their terms and conditions at Blackfriars station construction site. Then they marched to the HSE picket line where they were joined by people from the Occupy LSX protest. Together they then marched to Guys Hospital picket line and then the Tate Modern picket line.
At rallies around the country speakers made it clear that if the government don’t move workers will have to strike again. These calls were all met with huge cheers.
While unemployment continues to rise, the cuts continue to bite and the ConDems announce further pay freezes, it is clear that we have found our weapon – the strike.
Striking together has taken the resistance to the ConDems a massive step forward. We need to start preparing for the next strike. N30 really was the beginning of a Winter of Resistance.