By Simon Chapman
The BBC strike over pensions has demonstrated great solidarity as NUJ members who work for the BBC went out on strike across the country.
Flagship programmes such as Newsnight were cancelled, the Today programme filled in with a wildlife piece, and there were only managers and stand-ins to cover news bulletins. The BBC Points West news programme on Friday evening was cut from half an hour to just 5 minutes.
At BBC Bristol in Whiteladies Road NUJ members at the BBC were on the picket lines from early in the morning, supported by colleagues from the Branch.
Across the country many members of the broadcast technicians’ union BECTU refused to cross the NUJ picket lines, despite their union voting to accept the deal. That also happened in Bristol where some BECTU members turning up decided not to work that day.
BBC management have made some statements on the pensions dispute and the NUJ has challenged these on our national website.
For a national update and reports and pictures including ones from Bristol, please see the main NUJ website and the Bristol Branch website photogallery. Thanks also to all those from the region who sent messages of support to the NUJ website and also those who sent messages to Bristol Branch, see below.
Listen to a radio interview from BCFM Drivetime on Friday with Steve Brodie the BBC Bristol Points West Home Affairs Correspondent about the reasons for the dispute, followed by a discussion with conservative councillor for Henbury Chris Windows who ends up apparently endorsing the strike. The interview can be found online about 35 minutes into this podcast.
Another 48 hour strike is due to take place on 15 & 16 November.
Some of the messages of support sent to Bristol Branch and the NUJ:
Can you pass on the support of the Bristol & District Anti-Cuts Alliance for your strike. There is no need to state how important these battles for a decent pension are for everyone and, sooner or later, we will have to stand together rather than be picked off one by one. If there is anything else specifically we can do, please let us know.
Anne Lemon, Secretary, Bristol & District Anti-Cuts Alliance
I totally support the strike. Keep at it, brothers and sisters!
Mick Tems, NUJ Life Member
You get my support. I would have been at the picket line but I couldn’t get there today ……….and tomorrow I am off to the demonstration against racism, fascism and Islamaphobia.
Keep on fighting
Phil Jones, National Union of Teachers
We at the White Horse (Wilts) Trades Union Council would like you to know you have our full support in your forthcoming strike action. NUJ member Di Harris is a member of our Trades Council and has told us of the problems members within the BBC are facing. We are totally behind you and wish you every success. Good Luck!
Carole Vallelly, Secretary White Horse (Wilts) Trades Union Council
Keep the faith brothers and sisters. Supporting you 100%. Don’t let the bastards grind you down…. Elfyn Griffith, Bristol NUJ