Saturday, 26 November 2011

To strike or not to strike ?

 There is a day of action on Wednesday  some thoughts here from a Christian perspective on Industrial Christian Fellowship website
To strike or not to strike?
 any thoughts?


  1. Thanks for this Charles - this is a big issue for me. I have no quarrel with my place of work but having joined a union (and incidentally having voted against strike action) should I support the democratic process trusting that everything possible has been done? On the other hand what message do I send out to those people I should be and wish to teach?

  2. Pam these are very tough but very good questions!
    Not sure I am qualified to give the answers though

  3. A well written article about a big decision. Thankyou for linking it, it has made me think a lot! Here are the reasons why I will be striking tomorrow...... It has not been an easy decision and striking goes against everything we believe in as physios. However 86% of my union voted to strike so there is a great strength of feeling out there.
    1. The pension changes have come at a time of intensive change in the NHS where we are being asked to work harder than ever before, squeeze more into our day, have to cover maternity leave on top of my own job etc. We are also on a 2 year pay freeze as physios. I believe as christians we should give 100% at work all the time and I do this, but some of the changes/ job losses / restructures / targets to meet that have happened recently make it difficult for me to do my job as I would wish and some are not in the patient's best interests (and patients are at the heart of our work). So the pensions news is the straw that broke the camels back!
    2. It is difficult to know when it is right as a christian at what point to make a stand and object as opposed to turning the other cheek, but I think this point has come. To me the pension changes (pay more, work longer and get less at the end) seem unjust and unfair, particularly to those who have worked for a long time and paid lots into their scheme. After all, Jesus stood up against injustice.
    3. We are told public sector pensions are unsustainable, but last year there was 2 billion pounds left in the pot so the money seems to be there. It is difficult to know what to believe.
    4. Frequently at the end of my working day, I am physically, mentally and emotionally tired. I cannot imagine doing the heavy demanding job I do now at 68, which is the proposed retirement age.
    5. Practically I can strike easier than many nurses, A+E doctors etc and I know that some physios will not strike tomorrow so there is a basic level of cover in the hospital which makes me feel less guilty for not being at work. I believe it is right to strike but can also do it in place of those who can't. In the article it talked about being part of a community at work and standing up for others beliefs as well as your own.
    5. The patients will be inconvenienced but I do not believe that my 1 day absence will be detrimental or harmful in any way to the patients I see daily. Only emergency physio cover is provided at weekends at present so it would be no different from a weekend day.
    6. Finally, on a more personal note, If I never get married or have children then that pension will be the only money I have in my old age so I would like to protect it!
    Sorry that was so long and I'm not very good at expressing things in words, but thought I'd have a go!

  4. Thats a great and very well thought through post Helen -Thanks for sharing it!