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Harry Kemble, Reporter
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Pupils and parents are set to face disruption today (Thurs) as teachers walk out in a row over pay, pensions and work conditions.
The majority of schools will be closed – or partially closed – as part of the industrial action organised by the National Union of Teachers (NUT).
Firefighters and council workers are also due to take part in the day of strike action which threatens to bring the public sector to a standstill.
Redbridge’s National Union of Teachers representative, Kashif Mallick, said: “I have had 30 calls in the past three to four months about teachers not receiving their incremental payments.
“What is this going to do for our standard of education? It means that teachers will only be in the profession for three to four years – it will ruin teaching.”
The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) said its members were striking over a government proposal to extend the retirement age.
Regional secretary, Paul Embery, said: “We think having firefighters aged 60 is completely insane. It is physically demanding – it is not a desk job.
“So far the public support has been really good. I think they understand that it is not wise to have 60-year-old firefighters on the front line.”
Wes Streeting, deputy leader of Redbridge Labour group, said the council would work hard to maintain public services. He said: “I think the strikes are a reflection of the way the government has conducted itself with its staff and trade union representatives – it is regrettable.”
Members from the GMB union, largely made up of local government workers, and the NUT are due to form a picket line outside Redbridge Town Hall this morning. Cllr Paul Canal, the leader of the Redbridge Tory group, said: “It is disappointing public sector workers who are guaranteed pay and their pensions every month feel the need to strike putting our lives at risk and affecting our children’s education.”
For a list of closed schools visit Redbridge Council’s website.