Day of action against nursery closures

HMRC staff and parents protest at closure plans for First Friends Nursery in Cardiff

Parents, nursery workers and HMRC staff around the country are preparing for a national day of action against nursery closures on 27 September. This follows the decision by the department to close eight workplace nurseries around the country by November.

Parents have been given 12 weeks’ notice that these nurseries are to close. Parents will find it extremely difficult to find alternatives in this short space of time as most nurseries have at least a six months waiting list. Nursery workers will lose their jobs, throwing skilled workers on the scrap heap and adding to the increasing jobless figures. HMRC workers will have to either reduce their hours or give up employment, effectively reducing their income and standard of living.

The decision is even more bizarre, given that it has been made by the department despite the nurseries being run by private companies and receiving no subsidy from HMRC. However, anger over the closures – resulting in a series of protests at various sites – has forced the department to offer further financial and leave entitlement support and assistance to affected staff.

The day of action is the next step in the campaign to force them into stopping the closures altogether.

In Nottingham, an organising committee has been set up to plan campaigning activity in the run up to and beyond 27 September. Reps in Leicester are engaging in campaigning activity and are gaining support from the wider trade union movement in the area. Parents and workers in Cardiff will be protesting outside Ty Glas from 7.30am Friday 20 September.

Cardiff against Cuts will use their lobby of the council to put pressure on councillors to demand HMRC change its mind. Protests in East Kilbride have attracted hundreds of angry parents and workers and they will be continuing their community based
campaign by organising a protest at 8am and later on a public meeting on 27 September.

Although this decision doesn’t directly affect staff in Bootle, we recognise the importance of this campaign and the benefit it will have to those with children at these sites. We therefore offer our full solidarity to the campaign and support to the
day of action on 27 September.

We would urge everyone who feels the same to sign the online petition here.

See more protest pictures on the East Kilbride R&C Branch website.

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