A wave of massive General Strikes have hit European countries today (Wednesday 14th Nov) as workers have taken action against austerity. The TUC has sent its support Follow this link to the TUC’s website for more information:
Action against austerity #14nov2012
The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) has designated Wednesday 14 November 2012 as a day of action against austerity, for jobs and growth: see why. Trade unions across Europe are taking action and demanding a change of course. Here’s a quick guide to what’s happening, what’s on the web, and what resources you can use.
The main action in the UK took place on 20 October, with marches in Belfast, Glasgow and London for a future that works. But British trade unionists are also taking action on 14 November in solidarity with workers around Europe, because although some countries are being hit harder than others, all European workers are affected. ETUC General Secretary Bernadette Segol has recorded a short video message explaining the need for action.
You can also read the TUC press release which was issued this morning.
General strikes in some of the most affected countries
In the worst affected countries, trade unions are striking for a better way. The TUC has reports on our website about action in:
The ETUC has created an online map showing what action is taking place around Europe – but there are lots of demonstrations and protests in towns too small to appear on a map of Europe, so this is only the main national action!
The TUC will be sending a message to Jose Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Commission, urging him and his colleagues, and the governments they represent, to change course urgently. TUC leaders Brendan Barber and Lesley Mercer will be taking the message by hand to the EU representation in the UK.
British trade unionists and Members of the European Parliament will also be joining a rally outside the European Commission offices in Brussels outside the Berlaymont at lunchtime on Wednesday, and we’ll be reporting back on the rally by twitter, using the ETUC’s official hashtag for the day, #14nov2012.
The TUC has also responded to requests from the Greek and Spanish trade union movements to write formally to their Governments, urging a change of course and a new approach to solving the economic and social crises in their countries. See our letters to:
Later on Wednesday, our friends in the Coalition of Resistance will be meeting at 5pm outside the EU London offices and rallying at 6:30pm in the Upper Hall, Emmanuel Centre, 9-23 Marsham Street, London SW1P 3DW. TUC General Secretary Designate Frances O’Grady will be speaking at the rally and – in case you can’t be there – her speech will appear online as she makes it. There will also be actions in Glasgow, Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford, Sheffield and elsewhere. You can read the letter to the Guardian, signed by Frances O’Grady, about the 5pm rally at: http://gu.com/p/3bz4j/em.
The TUC has created an infographic about austerity across Europe showing the impact on citizens and workers, especially young people. Share it with friends, family and work mates.
The ETUC has created a Facebook page about the day of action with all the latest news and information. Like it, and encourage your Facebook friends to do the same.
And the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) has urged trade unionists around the world to show solidarity by signing a pledge against austerity in Europe. They want 1411 trade unionists to sign up by 14/11!
The ITUC has also written to Herman van Rompuy and Manuel Barroso in solidarity with the ETUC day of action.
Please tweet your messages about the day, and retweet others, using the ETUC’s hashtag for action against austerity, #14nov2012.
Getting the message across online
The TUC will be blogging ahead of the day of action and on the day itself. The following articles are already online:
- Anti-austerity marches on: from ‘a future that works’ to ‘no to austerity’
- Austerity fetishism in Europe hurts us all
- 14 November 2012: Action against austerity in Europe
There are a whole host of materials on the ETUC’s website, including:
- ‘A Social Compact for Europe’ – the ETUC manifesto for change, a rebuttal to the Fiscal Compact which is at the heart of the austerity policies of the EU and European governments;
- The ETUC’s statement establishing the Day of Action against austerity, for jobs and growth;
- A poster you can download and print off, or use for online communications; and
- A leaflet setting out the ETUC’s min concerns and demands.
Briefing document (800 words) issued 13 Nov 2012