Remploy workers, threatened by Tory plans to close 54 remaining workplaces, returned to the picket lines this Thursday. This was the second day of joint strike action by GMB and Unite members and saw the picket lines grow in strength. The strike took place just days after the government announced that the first round of closures would see disabled workers thrown out of their jobs as early as 18 August.
Solidarity for the workers from trade unionists, disabled activists and anti-cuts campaigners was once more in evidence.
The picket line in Barking was visited by two local councillors, including George Barratt who spoke at a solidarity meeting ahead of the strike. Once more passing lorry and bus drivers hooted their horns to signal support for the strike, while a refuse collector refused to cross the picket line.
In Glasgow almost the entire workforce joined the picket line. The level of anger was summed up by GMB convenor for Remploy in Scotland Phil Brennan, ”In 1995 there were 96 Remploy factories and 280 senior managers. Today there are 54 factories and 400 of them. We’ve had enough—now is the time to fight back.”
Around the country many Remploy workplaces saw similarly strong and determined pickets. Another day of strike action has been called for Monday 6 August – it is vital that the solidarity that can sustain the fight for these jobs continues to roll in.
Find out where your local Remploy factory is from this list and visit the picket line on the next strike day. In the meantime why not print our sheet to make a collection and send your message of support to firstname.lastname@example.org