By Sean Morris & James Pearse: Union members banded together in Stafford to march across the city during the national strike.
Workers from UNISON, UCU and ATL attended the rally which started at the Polish Community Centre at Riverway and finished at Market Square in the town centre.
Michael Shepard, from UNISON, said: “We see a threat to our pension because the Government tells us we’re going to live longer.
“A Government that’s dismantling and privatising the NHS, the very NHS that makes us live longer, so I have no confidence in living longer. But if I am going to live longer I don’t want to live in poverty.”
Kate Brandrick of ATL added: “I was angry that after planning my retirement in six years, I was suddenly going to have to work for another six years.
“We are here and we are striking because unfortunately the Government responds more to force than to reason.
“For us today we are here as a tactic in an industrial dispute – nothing more, nothing less. “
Councillor Rowan Draper of Stafford Borough Council was at Market Square to lend his support.
“I think it was inevitable that the public sector workers went out on strike,” said Cllr Draper. “The Government aren’t interested in listening that’s why there’s been one strike already.
“The negations hopefully will carry on and will hopefully show exactly what public sector workers up and down this country actually feel towards this Government and their right wing agenda against public sector workers.”
Click here to see a video of the march with Neil Salter from UNISON speaking: