The strike: picketing outside schools and hospital

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MEMBERS of more than 20 trades unions were taking part in a rally outside Halifax Town Hall this morning.

Most Calderdale schools and at least 14 council offices were closed as part of the national strike over pension changes by public sector workers.

Calderdale Magistrates Court and Halifax County Court was operating with a skeleton staff.

Pickets were on duty outside several schools, the Calderdale Royal Hospital and Heath Training Centre, in Free School Lane, Halifax.

The Government wants public sector workers to work for longer, pay more into their pensions and for those pensions to be based on a “career average” salary, rather that the current final salary arrangement which many are currently on.

It says the cost of funding public sector pensions is unsustainable as people are are living longer.

The unions say the proposals will leave members paying more and working longer for less.

At least four Calderdale primary schools remained open as normal today - Bowling Green, at Stainland, Salterlee, Shibden, Scout Road, Mytholmroyd, and St John’s, at Clifton.

Seven schools were partly closed but children in the remaining 100 primary and secondary schools, enjoyed an extra day’s holiday.

Bradford Crown Court was severely disrupted with just four or five cases being heard.