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  • Writer's pictureIWW Ireland

IWW Solidarity with La Retraite School Strikers

Updated: Mar 17, 2021

Today March 16th, the IWW Ireland extends solidarity to the striking workers at the La Retraite Catholic girls' school fighting for fairness and equality.

The outsourced cleaners at the La Retraite Roman Catholic School Girls’ School in South London are starting a 40 days and 40 nights strike to protest wage theft, poverty pay and institutionalised racism.

The workers, who are majority BAME and migrants, are employed by contractor Ecocleen and receive lower pay rates and more precarious contract terms and conditions on sick pay than the rest of staff employed by the school, despite providing essential services.

Not receiving full sick pay has meant that during the Covid pandemic these workers have been forced to work even when ill due to not being able to afford to live on statutory sick pay.

When workers challenged Ecocleen regarding health and safety concerns, the contractor responded by withholding wages, forcing some of the workers to look for loans and food banks to survive.

One of the workers highlights that they have been forced to take strike action as their demands of full pay sick pay and the London Living Wage, have not been listened to and continue to be treated unfairly.

A spokesperson for the Industrial Workers of the World earlier today, in advance of strike action said: “Outsourcing is a profiting system of modern slavery which affects mostly BAME, migrants and women, creating precarious working conditions often leading to severe poverty, homelessness, and poor health.

“This is a clear attack on the poorest and most vulnerable and we must fight back. Only the workers united can bring about change for solidarity is not a word, but a weapon.”

An injury to one is an injury to all!

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