Thursday, May 22, 2008

All out for fair pay

It has been a brilliant first morning of action at The Press and the Gazette & Herald's headquarters in Walmgate, York. More than 25 union members and supporters turned out on the first day of our five-day strike over pay.

We started early - at 7.30am - and we were early enough to wave our placards at management as they slunk into the car park. Later colleagues in the (non-unionised) advertising and circulation department expressed their support as they arrived at work.

The backing from members of the public was immense, with countless drivers responding to our "Honk for fair pay" placards. There was much interest in our stall - more than 1,000 people took leaflets before lunchtime - and our strike paper The Stress, which covered the dispute in depth, was also popular on the picket line.

Colleagues from York Unison came and joined the picket line early on and at lunchtime, while the postal workers in the CWU gave us their backing. Messages of support have also been flooding in by text to the picket line. Thank you to everyone who is supporting us. We've had solidarity greetings from:

  • Brent Trades Council
  • The Guardian's media desk
  • Irish NUJ members
  • Manchester Mental Health Branch Unison
  • NUJ members at Northcliffe in Bristol
  • British Association of Occupational Therapists members in Manchester
  • Manchester trade unionist Karen Reismann
  • NUJ East Yorkshire Branch
  • Kyran Connolly, NUJ National Executive Committee member for books
  • NUJ South Yorkshire Branch and the Rotherham Advertiser Chapel
  • NUJ Newsquest Bradford Chapel
  • NUJ Newsquest Darlington Chapel
  • NUJ BBC Lonndon Branch
  • NUJ Book Branch members
  • NUJ members at Minster FM
  • Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ National Executive Committee member for newspapers and Mother of Chapel at Express Newspapers
  • Members of the PCS union
  • NUJ Coventry Newspapers Chapel
  • NUJ Sheffield Newspapers Chapel
  • NUJ London Press and PR Branch
  • NUJ News Shopper Chapel
  • Ian Allinson, Unite executive council member
  • Miles Barter, NUJ Manchester Branch
  • NUJ Scottish office
  • Kate Carr, NUJ BBC and Wales Council
  • Jeremy Dear, NUJ general secretary
  • LexisNexis NUJ negotiating team
  • NUJ Scotland
  • NUJ Evening Echo/Irish Examiner Chapel
  • NUJ Bolton News and Bury Times Chapel
  • and NUJ members in Cardiff, Manchester, York and Leeds