By Maximilian Clarke
Britain's foremost business lobby, the Confederation of British Industry, has become the latest high-profile institution to voice their condemnation of the scheduled November 30th public sector pension strikes.
“The timing of this strike is particularly bad, given the weak state of the economy," said Katja Hall, CBI chief policy director. "Disruption of this sort will cost hundreds of millions of pounds at a time when everyone should be working to help the recovery.
“What’s particularly disappointing is that some of the largest unions haven’t managed to achieve a clear mandate for a strike, and schools may be forced to close despite only a handful of teachers voting for it.
“Now is the time for the Government to legislate to ensure strikes only go ahead when 40% of the balloted workforce support the action, along with a simple majority of those who have voted.”
Added to the widespread disruption across the UK's workplaces, which Cabinet Minister Francis Maude calculated could cost some £500 million in lost productivity, will be a decimation in the capacity of the UK's airports. The UK Border Agency will reportedly be working at just half productivity, triggering delays for inbound travellers in excess of 12 hours.
Heathrow's role as the UK's hub for business travellers will result in catastrophic disruption for enterprises across the UK, further undermining the UK economy at a crucial juncture in the nation's recovery.
Nevertheless, unions remain committed to the 30th November Strikes regardless of the cost:
"Dedicated public sector workers take no pleasure in taking action next week but the blame for this strike lies squarely with the government for failing to engage in serious talks until unions decided on a day of action," say the Trades Union Congress.
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