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Schools likely to remain open during strike day

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: March 16, 2014

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THE threat of public sector strikes looks likely to cause minimal disruption to parents and hospital patients Burton and South Derbyshire.

Some secondary schools in the region have announced there are no plans to close on March 26 – the day when the National Union of Teachers announced its members will walk out over a long-running row over pay, pensions and conditions.

The Paget High School, in Branston, announced it would not close while the De Ferrers Academy, Paulet High School and Sixth Form College, Granville Sports College and The William Allitt School all look likely to follow suit.

The Pingle School, the Blessed Robert Sutton Catholic Sports College and Abbot Beyne had not responded to requests from the Mail to comment.

The revelations came as union representatives said there are no plans yet for NHS workers in Burton to strike, also in a row over working conditions.

Mick Stevens, the representative for Unite union members at Burton’s Queen’s hospital, said there was no immediate threat of strike action – for now at least.

He said: “Unite and other unions are consulting with their members now with a view to a national campaign which may affect services in Burton.

“But at the moment we are consulting with staff, not balloting for industrial action.”

The union had still launched a scathing attack on the Government’s decision to U-turn on its promise of a one per cent pay rise for all staff.

The move effectively denies 615,000 – or about 55 per cent of non-medical workers - the rise.

Mr Stevens said: “We have to send a message that they cannot keep cutting pay, reducing terms and conditions and have the same level of moral.

“There is a breaking point and I think staff have reached that. I’m now led to believe half are worthy of a pay rise.

“After all the changes, the re-design of service and some having their terms and conditions reduced is insulting.”

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