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John McDonnell pledges solidarity to striking library staff in Barnet

PUBLISHED: 13:58 07 June 2016

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.

PA/Press Association Images

Barnet library workers have gained the support of shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, as they prepare for a three day strike in protest of council cuts.

The strikes, organised by trade union Barnet Unison, are in opposition to the council’s plans to outsource the running of the library services across the borough.

The shadow chancellor released a statement saying: “I want to pay tribute and send solidarity greetings to Barnet Unison library workers.

“They have been fighting an inspirational workplace and community campaign and I would like to thank them for their sterling efforts to expose and prevent the proposed widespread decimation of their library service which will see half the workforce dumped onto the dole queue.

“Barnet Unison has been a fine example of how trade unions and their community can work together in fighting austerity policies which are destroying local public services up and down the country, they have my 100 per cent support.”

The strikes are due to take place on June 13, 14 and 15 and Unison are calling for the Council to revaluate their proposals.

Hugh Jordan, library convenor at the union, said: “Barnet Unison calls for the current plan to decimate library service to be stopped now before further damage is done.

“Every day we hear of another Library closing due to cuts, handing over the service to volunteers or outsourcing. Enough is enough, there needs to be a national response to the systemic destruction of the national library service.”

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