Scarborough workers join the pickets

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A RANGE of public sector workers took to the streets of Scarborough as part of a national strike.

Teachers, nurses, council workers and job centre staff were among those who walked out in protest at government plans to change people’s pensions, making them pay more and work longer.

National Strike'The strikers outside Northway Clinic led by Unite union rep Sarah Hayes,third from left. And below, Denis Lynch, left, pictured with fellow strike supporters on the NYCC offices picket line

National Strike'The strikers outside Northway Clinic led by Unite union rep Sarah Hayes,third from left. And below, Denis Lynch, left, pictured with fellow strike supporters on the NYCC offices picket line

Various unions were out on strike including Unison, Unite the Union, the Public and Commercial Services Union and the National Union of Teachers.

Members stood on picket lines, including those at Scarborough Hospital, the Sixth Form College, Northway Clinic and North Yorkshire House in Scalby Road.

There was also a protest at Scarborough town centre in Westborough as shoppers walked by.

The action left thousands of children at home as 23 schools closed their doors – although some remained open or partially open.

Public sector strikes...'Denis Lynch (left) pictured with fellow strike supporters on the NYCC offices picket line.'114819. Picture Kevin Allen.'30/11/11.

Public sector strikes...'Denis Lynch (left) pictured with fellow strike supporters on the NYCC offices picket line.'114819. Picture Kevin Allen.'30/11/11.

Scarborough Library was closed, as were Burnside and Elder Street day centres, which cater for those with learning disabilities.

Scarborough Training Centre also had a reduced service.

Around 50 union representatives gathered in Westborough to speaks to passers by and hand out leaflets.

Tony Randerson, regional officer for Unite the Union, said that members were “incensed” about Government plans to alter pensions and cut more public sector jobs.

He said: “We’ve got to remember that in the public sector, a lot of people are on low wages and the average pension is around £3,000.”

He added: “People have put up with low wages all their lives on the understanding that deferred wages would be paid eventually.”

Also at the town centre demonstration was Labour councillor Eric Broadbent, who is secretary of the Scarborough and District Trades Council. He said: “In conjunction with the Trades Union Congress nationally we’ve agreed to give out leaflets in the town centre as part of this day of action.

“The cuts are affecting the socially vulnerable and many people throughout the borough.”

Staff from Yorkshire Ambulance service were also out on strike, opposing plans which will force them to work in “challenging and stressful environments” to the age of 68.

The workers, who are members of Unison, are angry at having to pay higher pension contributions in the wake of a two-year pay freeze.