We Demand Better: Cost of Living and Fuel Protest Explained

Crowds marched from Portland Place to Parliament Square for a rally that featured speakers including Frances O’Grady, general secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), which organizes the event.

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According to the TUC’s findings, staff have lost around £20,000 in wages since 2008 because wages have not kept pace with inflation.

As a blue flare was released to signal the start of the march, protesters whistled, cheered and clapped.

Loud music, including the songs “9 To 5,” “I Need A Dollar,” and “Money, Money, Money,” was played over speakers as people sang and danced along.

Who spoke at the rally?

Protesters hold placards during the British Trades Union Congress (TUC) ‘We Demand Better’ rally (Photo: Hollie Adams/Getty Images)

Speaking to the crowds gathered in Parliament Square, Saleyha Ahsan, an NHS doctor and spokesperson for the group Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, criticized the Government for not yet launching an inquiry into the pandemic.

She said: “If they really cared, if they really cared, to learn these essential lessons to save lives, the investigation would have already begun.

“Why are they stopping? What else are you hiding?”

Applause and cheers greeted Frances O’Grady, General Secretary of the TUC, as she addressed the gathering in Parliament Square.

She said: “I saw that the Secretary for Transport, Grant Shapps, threatened the railway workers that they were going to quit themselves.”

Shapps previously said rail strikes would “endanger the jobs of thousands of workers” and warned people planning three days of work stoppages next week that they were “taking the risk of putting themselves out of work”.

“Well, you’re wrong, Mr. Shapps,” said O’Grady, “if you keep stirring you’ll be out of work by the next election.”

“Let me say this to Boris Johnson: Don’t you dare put the blame for inflation on working people,” she added.

“Don’t you dare, not after a decade of austerity, privatization and wage cuts. Don’t you dare tell working families that we have more pain to endure.

“What about the bankers’ bonuses? What about the boardroom that counts it? What about corporate profits? It’s time to raise taxes on wealth, not workers.”

https://www.nationalworld.com/news/uk/we-demand-better-march-tuc-cost-of-living-fuel-price-protest-in-central-london-today-speakers-3736868 We Demand Better: Cost of Living and Fuel Protest Explained


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