Public sector workers including teachers and firefighters are expected to take part in a walk out today in a dispute with the coalition over pay rise.
The workers are demanding that public sector pay be increased in light of new reports of Britain’s fledgling economic recovery.
Prime Minister David Cameron has called the strikes ‘unnecessary’, and has reopened fresh calls for changing the rules to give less autonomy to the unions when calling strike ballots.
“I don’t think these strikes are right… I think people should turn up for work,”said Mr Cameron during Thursday’s Prime Minister’s Questions.
“I think the time has come for looking at setting thresholds in strike ballots.”
“How can it possibly be right for our children’s education to be disrupted by trade unions acting in that way? It is time to legislate and it will be in the Conservative manifesto.”
Currently, a strike can go ahead if majority of those balloted agree. Union bosses have been criticised for basing strikes on ballots involving a small percentage of members but they have also hit back at Ministers insisting that Britain already has one of the strictest strike laws in the world.
TUC secretary, Francis O’Grady told the BBC, “The number of working days lost to industrial action is low. Instead of ill-thought out and unnecessary changes in the law, a better use of the prime minister’s time might be to come up with ways to ensure that Britain’s hard-pressed public sector workers begin to share in the economic recovery.”
Public sector pay have been frozen for three years and a below inflation pay rise offer of 1% was rejected by the union.
The strike means many schools will be shut, firefighters, libraries and job centres will also be affected, as well as other vital services like meals on wheels and dustbin collections.