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Jan 30th, 2012

bankers bonuses and soaring executive pay?

By marie

Photograph by Getty Images

Late last night, RBS chief Stephen Hester said he would not take his £1 million bonus after all. That’s a huge turnaround – and we helped make it happen.

When we launched the petition on Friday calling on Hester to refuse his giant bonus, it looked an uphill struggle. David Cameron and George Osborne were both claiming their hands were tied. Many thought it was a done deal.

But in 48 hours over 80,000 38 Degrees members signed the petition. The public outcry grew in volume across the internet and in the press. More and more politicians started to join in. By the end of the weekend, we’d got Hester to back down.

This latest breakthrough is yet more proof that people power matters. When enough of us speak up together, we can help change things for the better – even when politicians claim there is no alternative.

Remember when the government said there was nothing they could do to stop Rupert Murdoch taking over BSkyB? Or that selling off England’s forests was essential? Or that the NHS changes would be done and dusted by the middle of 2011? Time and again 38 Degrees members work together to prove there are alternatives.

Is the more we could be doing together to tackle the scandal of bankers bonuses and skyrocketing executive pay? You can share your thoughts on this  on our Facebook page or by commenting below.

Here’s what some other 38 Degrees members are saying so far:

Deborah: “Way to go! 82K people signed in 48 hours! Well done 38 Degrees!”

Shaun: “This is great news, i like to think that our petition and facebook protest on here and on the RBS facebook page had a hand in making him change his mind on the bonus”

John: “A small enough victory but I hope a significant one. On to chasing tax dodgers and saving our NHS”

Anthony: “We need to remember this was not brought about by any pressure whatsoever by the government or the board. Both backed the bonus, the board siding with him and the government limp in their glaring lack of condemnation. The more we speak up the louder our voice.”

Wendy: “The arguments in favour of high salaries for bankers are as obscene as the salaries and bonuses themselves.”

Sylvia: “We pestered Hester – and he crumbled!”

What do you think?

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