27 July 2012
PCS members will walk out of the major tourist venue between 1pm and 3pm as part of a continuation of their dispute with the employer.
Assistant posts have been reduced after the government axed 15% from the gallery's budget in October 2010. There used to be one assistant in each room but this is no longer the case. Assistants have been asked to cover more than one room - putting both the art and the visitors at risk.
Last summer Nicolas Poussin’s ‘Adoration of the golden calf’, a valuable work of art, was vandalised in a room without an assistant. The union believes it would not have happened had a member of staff been there at the time.
Some of the permanent public galleries have been closed during major paying shows such as the sold-out Leonardo Da Vinci exhibition. Gallery assistants play an important part in the running of the gallery and we are urging the public to back our campaign for more permanent staff.
Workers at the gallery who took part in the ballot voted 80% in favour of strike action.
Trade unionists and fans of the National Gallery are welcome to visit picket lines in Trafalgar Square.
Show your support for the strike by emailing your solidarity message to email@example.com