Standing up to the “easycouncil”

Standing up to the “easycouncil”

“The spirit shown by our library workers today is a tremendous example to us all – and we will stand by them as they fight for their jobs.”
Dave Prentis,
UNISON General Secretary

The assault on our public services in recent years has fallen hardest on local government – with libraries particularly under fire.

And there are few areas that have suffered greater attacks from their local authority than Barnet.

“You have got our full support and if you need any help just let us know”                                                                                                             Mr Prentis speaking to the #BarnetStrikers

So I was proud to be on the picket line alongside library workers today, taking the fight to the so-called Tory “easycouncil” and showing local people how severe and damaging the cuts to their local services really are.


I spoke with activists Fiona Turnbull and Hugh Jordan (Barnet UNISON’s libraries convenor) about the sheer scale of job losses and service cuts being inflicted on an already bare bones service. At Chipping Barnet (where we met this morning) the library will lose 33 staff hours (down from 56.5 hours at present). Other libraries will lose more than half of their size and be reduced to volunteer only provision.

Services lost or weakened. Jobs cuts. And those in the community who need them most left to suffer.

“Our members in Barnet have been at the sharp end, with the council outsourcing anything it can. The spirit shown by our library workers today is a tremendous example to us all – and we will stand by them as they fight for their jobs.”

Dave Prentis,

UNISON General Secretary

unison – standing-up-to-the-easycouncil



Defend the 10 libraries campaign – Message of Solidarity

‘Defend the 10 libraries campaign in Lambeth sends solidarity to all the library workers taking strike action this week to stop the destruction of the library service in Barnet.

With cuts, closures and privatisation of our library services up and down the country we know how important it is to stand up and fightback. Your action will not only help in the battle to stop Barnet’s plans but will also give heart to everyone who wants to see an end to the ongoing devastation of vital library services.

We wish you all the best! Your fight is our fight!’

Michaela Loebner  Defend the 10, Lambeth



Solidarity Message from Barnet Trades Union Council


To our brothers and sisters in Barnet UNISON – your fight against the privatisation and decimation of Public Services by the ideologically driven Tories in our Borough is an inspiration to the Trade Union movement.

Libraries are a beacon of any civilised society, providing a safe environment where generations of our community have benefited from this vital social service, helping to bridge the gap between the haves and the have nots. 

Libraries are spaces where people of all ages and all backgrounds can practice lifelong learning, something that the Tories in our Borough well understand and find distasteful.

We stand with you in your fight against this attack on our community.

In Solidarity,

Barnet Trades Union Council


Message of Solidarity from Barnet Alliance For Public Services & Save Barnet Libraries

“BAPS and Save Barnet Libraries support your strike action and hope to see you on the picket line. As you know our two groups have been campaigning to save the library service since the first dreadful plans were put forward. We understand the value of trained professionals, and appreciate that it is your skills and experience that have provided the high-quality service that we have enjoyed and depended on. We deplore the cuts in space, material resources and, above all, in your jobs.

We are still working on the campaign and stand shoulder to shoulder with you.”

In solidarity.



Message of Solidarity from Barnet NUT

A message of support to library workers organised by Barnet Unison

Barnet NUT gives 100% support to the forthcoming strike by our fellow workers in Barnet Libraries. Of course we extend this support in the spirit of worker solidarity – an injury to one is an injury to all. But we also support you because of the valuable work you do in performing such an important public sector and public education role for all the residents of Barnet. Without your contribution our residents and our children will be so much the poorer.

We salute you for standing up for your rights and ours.

For your livelihood and ours. For your community and ours.



Message of Solidarity from Davy Hopper

” I want to send a message of solidarity and support to Barnet UNISON Library workers who are taking 3 days strike action next week in defence of service and jobs. I am proud to have marched with Barnet UNISON and your Save Barnet Libraries campaign on 12 September 2015. I was impressed with how the union and the community were working together to defend their local services. Good luck with your strike and your campaign.”

 Davy Hopper, General Secretary , Durham Miners’Association

Message of Solidarity from Barnet Green Party

‘We at Barnet Green Party are writing to express our solidarity with the three day strike action being taken by your library workers. Barnet Council’s proposed cuts to posts, staffing hours, library space and other resources is completely unacceptable. It demonstrates an absence of imagination in modernising libraries to adapt to the electronic-era. We believe that the shrinking, selling and cutting staffing at libraries is the action of a heartless undemocratic council. The selling off of public goods which are treasured by Barnet’s residents and of which they are custodians with no mandate to dispose of is quite simply scandalous and we shall continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with you in resisting the cuts to library services as we have sadly had to do for years.’

Dan Ozarow

Trade Union Liaison Officer, Barnet Green Party

Message of Solidarity from Mark Serwotka PCS General Secretary

“On behalf of PCS, I send our full solidarity for your strike. You have the full support of PCS in your fight against cuts to public libraries in Barnet and the forced privatisation of these vital public services and we are absolutely clear that your fight is our fight. PCS members have taken action over similar issues in recent years. Our members at the Land Registry successfully fought off privatisation in the past, and are now facing another struggle to stop another attempted sell off. Please let us know if there is any other practical support we can provide.”

(Mark Serwotka PCS General Secretary)

Message of Solidarity to Barnet’s library staff & Barnet Unison

Message of Solidarity to Barnet’s library staff & Barnet Unison


Leader of the Barnet Labour Group, Cllr Barry Rawlings said:

“On behalf of the Barnet Labour Group I would like to send a message of solidarity to all Library staff taking industrial action on 13th, 14th and 15th of June in opposition to Barnet Council’s terrible plan to cut library posts by 46%, reduce the staffed opening hours of our libraries by 70%, and slash floor space at our libraries.

“We oppose these library cuts, and the plans to outsource the service which we believe will have a devastating and lasting impact on our local community.”

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