9th February 2017
Jean has sent the following statement of support to Public and Commercial Services staff working at the Equality and Human Rights Commission (ECHR), who are striking today as part of a joint campaign with Unite members against compulsory redundancies and budget cuts.
The EHRC has a front-line role in promoting and defending equality legislation and human rights – a role which is increasingly important as we see hate-crime on the rise, pregnant women still facing dismissal and rising costs making it impossible for people to take cases to tribunals. The EHRC itself is facing yet more budget cuts and its work must be defended.
This defence would be easier if the EHRC were not pushing compulsory redundancies among its own staff who, with a different employer, would be asking for EHRC’s help in their own workplace. Staff should not be having to take strike action to demand, full, meaningful consultation and genuine offers of redeployment. Cutting these staff reduces the internal diversity of the EHRC. I urge ECHR management to work with staff and their Union to find a just solution. Then, all energies can be focused on fighting cuts to this crucially important body and tackling the growing division and prejudice in our society.
Yours in solidarity,
Green Party MEP, London