Aug 11th, 2015
No to privatisation at the National Gallery!
By Rachel Oliver
Staff at the National Gallery are going on indefinite strike today against privatisation. They don’t want gallery services and security handed to profit-hungry companies that are looking to cut corners and make conditions worse for staff.
The gallery’s new director is starting next week. He’s keen to strengthen the gallery’s “bond with the public”. Together we can show him that hundreds of thousands of us stand with the National Gallery staff – and believe our national treasures are too important to be in the hands of dodgy private security firms.
Clara, a 38 Degrees member, has started a petition to stop the privatisation. If enough of us get behind her today, we could help convince the new boss to make his first move reversing this unpopular plan.
Please sign the petition now, it’ll take less than a minute.
“The Ambassadors” is one of the gallery’s most famous paintings.
Here’s why some other 38 Degrees members are getting behind the campaign:
Kim: “Nothing good comes of privatisation. It always ends up costing more and we’ll lose the valuable workforce who actually care and know a lot about the collection.”
Lorna: “Another example of privatisation that benefits nobody but the companies and brings nothing but harm to employees and society.”
The gallery staff have been fighting privatisation for months – they’ve shown it’s unnecessary and unpopular, and have even presented a costed alternative plan. But so far it hasn’t been enough. The arrival of the new director offers a glimmer of hope.
Together we can show him that it’s not just workers, but thousands of ordinary people who don’t want our national heritage in private hands. Our National Gallery should be exactly that – a national one – owned by and run for people, not for profit.
As the gallery staff stand on their picket line today, they might feel alone and fearful for the future. Their contracts are meant to be handed over to a private company this week. Let’s show them that thousands of us are standing with them to protect our national institutions from private interests.