In March this year I was fortunate enough to get to shoot with some of my favourite cameras at a huge political public event. This was a really important day for me, as a public sector working in my first year of employment.
I work for the probation service, which like many other public services is facing huge cuts at the moment. At the beginning of 2011 we were very close to having compulsory redundancies which was horrible for me, as a newbie, even though my job seemed fairly secure. I watched lots of my colleagues and friends getting ready to fight for their jobs. Fortunately, due to the generosity of other colleagues who took extra leave, even though it meant less pay every month, and a number of people agreeing to early retirement/voluntary redundancy then those jobs were saved. Other public services however have not been so lucky and the situation is very much ongoing.
The march organised by the Trade Unions Convention on March this year was really important as it showed the government how important this issue is to the general UK public. There is often a lot of apathy among British citizens but that day it felt as though everyone was there, and those who couldn’t be were supporting us in mind. The day itself was very special (if a bit tiring), there was a huge turnout and a great friendly atmosphere. Some of the banners which had been made by the marchers were creative, to the point and often hilarious.
If the TUC decides on more marches regarding this issue I will definitely going along with Napo (my union) and taking lots and lots of photos. I encourage anyone else who likes the NHS, Royal Mail and other public services being public to come and join us.