ATL to ballot for national strike action
24 Jan 2011
The Association of Teachers and Lecturers is to hold a ballot for national strike action in protest over changes to teachers' pensions.
The union's action committee decided at the end of last week to prepare for the national ballot because it says the government is refusing to talk about the changes to pensions which are being imposed on the profession.
The ATL is traditionally the most moderate of the big three teachers' unions and it was last involved in national action in 1979.
The ATL says its members are "outraged" at the demand for a 3.4% increase in pension contributions by 2014.
The ATL General Secretary, Mary Bousted, said: "Members are rightly furious that the government has delayed a full valuation of the pension scheme and is now demanding that they pay more into their pensions before knowing whether this is necessary".
Meanwhile, another teachers' union - the NASUWT - says it is finding growing anger amongst its members over both pensions and the freeze on pubic sector pay. It is conducting a national survey of teachers' views and says it has received thousands of responses.
Its General Secretary, Chris Keates, warned: "the anger will continue to foment and deepen unless the coalition government responds positively and swiftly to the TUC's repeated representations to engage in meaningful discussion on public sector pay and pensions".