As union-bashing Michael Gove accused teachers of taking “militant” strike action over pension cuts, Scrapbook thought it apposite to revist the photo above of a certain bespectacled trainee journalist.
The image depicts the education secretary alongside union colleagues from Aberdeen’s Press and Journal, distributed across the northern counties of Scotland. Liberal Conspiracy reports that he went on a strike for as long as four months after his employers de-recognised the National Union of Journalists.
Indeed, Gove was described by his former shop steward as quite the firebrand:
“He was an active striker, willingly taking his turn on picket duty and going on a small delegation to Strasbourg to press the union’s case”
Current plans to make teachers pay more, work longer and get less in retirement threaten to choke off graduate recruitment, prompt thousands of older, experienced teachers to retire while making it even more difficult to recruit headteachers. The move sees the more cautious ATL union striking for the first time in 127 years.
Perhaps Gove should sit down with his former comrades instead of slinging mud.