LONDON, November 11 /PRNewswire/ -- A group of Ford machinists will meet with Harriet Harman, Leader of the House and Minister for Women at 5.30pm in Westminster today, to remember the first equal pay victory 40 years ago for Ford sewing machinists in 1968, and 24 years after the final victory in 1984.
Speaking at the celebration event with Ford machinists and Harriet Harman, Diana Holland, Assistant General Secretary for Equalities at Unite said;
40 years after the first equal pay victory of Ford sewing machinists in 1968, and 24 years after the final victory in 1984, their struggle remains a beacon of light for all.
The right not to be paid less just because you are a woman is something we now take for granted. This is only the case because women like those at Ford stood up for equal pay, and struggled together for many years until justice was achieved.
It was as a direct result of meeting with the women involved in the struggles for equal pay at Ford in 1968 that Minister Barbara Castle introduced the Equal Pay Act in the 1970s, outlawing unequal pay between men and women.
Today's meeting with Harriet Harman between Ford machinists involved in the equal pay struggles and Ford women, will pay tribute to the achievements of the past, whilst stressing the importance of the continuing struggle for equal pay today, as the government's forthcoming Equality Bill shows.
As the Ford machinists themselves have said :
We don't have to play second fiddle to men. If we do the same job as them, we should get the same money. Terri Taylor
Being on strike was hard, but women workers today get the benefit of our strike. Selver Selveraja
I never got a watch or a meal to mark years of long service. But we did get recognition on equal pay, and it means a lot to me. Laurentia Vallace.
Our pay struggle was about the future of all people. What we got was for women in the UK and all over the world. Barthi Patel
NOTE : A group of Ford machinists will meet with Harriet Harman, Leader of the House and Minister for Women at 5.30pm in Westminster
The wider celebration event will take place at 7 Millbank 6-9pm
Contact: Ciaran Naidoo +44(0)7768-931-315