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Durham Teaching Assistants To Hold Solidarity March And Rally

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Durham Teaching Assistants will hold a Solidarity March and Rally in Durham city centre later.

Supporters from around the region and from all over the country will join the TAs to show support for their 18 month fight against plans by Durham County Council to cut their pay by up to £5000 a year.

Teaching Assistants from Derby, also facing up to 25% pay cuts will join the march in a show of solidarity.

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Supporters will gather in Millennium Square, Durham at noon then march the Miners’ Hall, Redhills for a rally starting at 2pm.

Speakers at the rally will include TAs from the campaigns in Durham and Derby as well as from trade unions.

Negotiations to resolve the dispute between Durham County Council, Unions and Teaching Assistant representatives are currently underway.

Teaching Assistant Vicki Yarrow said: “We know negotiations are underway but we want to remind the Council that we will fight on until we find a solution that doesn’t see us suffering life-changing pay cuts.

“If the cuts go through I will lose £297 per month, which is more than my mortgage payments.

“That’s £3564 per year; by the time I retire I will have lost £81,972.

“I will be forced to sell my home or leave my job.”

Kevin Courtney, General Secretary of NUT (the biggest teachers’ union) will be speaking at the rally and said: “I’m supporting Durham TAs because Teaching Assistants do a great job for our pupils and were undervalued and underpaid even before the outrageous pay cuts proposed by Durham Council.”

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