Unions warn of strikes following cuts

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Union leaders have warned of co-ordinated industrial action in protest at the "swingeing" cuts in public spending which they warned would hit jobs, pensions and services.

Firefighters and Tube workers in London are already planning to go on strike in the coming weeks in separate disputes over jobs and contracts.

Officials from some of the country's leading unions warned that action could escalate as part of the campaign to protect public services and jobs.

Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the Public and commercial Services union, said: "This is the largest cut in public service jobs since the Second World War. Civil servants will lose their jobs, have their redundancy payments cut by two thirds with little prospect of securing employment in the private sector as the economy dips again.

"The brunt of this recession is falling on the shoulders of public sector workers and the people they serve. There is no way that this can be claimed to be fair. People will not stand by and be trampled on by this Government. Unions and community organisations will inevitably work together to co-ordinate our resistance.

Bob Crow, general secretary of the Rail Maritime and Transport union, said: "These cuts represent the most brutal assault on public services, jobs and living standards in living memory and show that the ConDem government are prepared to force working people to carry the can for an economic crisis cooked up in the boardrooms and on the trading floors."

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