Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/611/8823

From The Socialist newspaper, 10 February 2010

Civil service strike ballot: Vote 'yes' for action

The ballot organised by the civil service union PCS for industrial action over plans to change the Civil Service Compensation Scheme has begun. The head of the civil service, Sir Gus O'Donnell, has called on members not to support the union's call to vote 'yes' to protect their contractual rights.

John McInally, national vice-president PCS, personal capacity

O'Donnell uses the fact that five other unions in the Council of Civil Service Unions (CCSU) have agreed to the latest changes proposed by the government.

Ironically, the latest changes, floated in recent negotiations, have been secured by the angry response from PCS members to the original draconian proposals and the determined negotiating stance of PCS negotiators and the national executive committee (NEC).

The leaders of some of the unions who have agreed the deal would have accepted the original proposals and at every stage, particularly the FDA and Prospect, have argued for taking whatever the government offered. This is no way to defend their members. Accepting this offer is a damaging and grave error of judgement.

PCS could not have accepted such a divisive offer. Our members are proud of the union's tradition of solidarity and unity, not for sentimental or sloganeering reasons but because campaigning, including being prepared to take industrial action as a last resort and hard negotiating from a position of strength, gets results.

While these proposals do secure greater protection for lower paid members they still leave a very large proportion of members, between 35% and 40%, unprotected and liable to huge financial detriment in the event of compulsory redundancy.

Acceptance of the 'offer' was conditional on all CCSU unions agreeing the proposals and that any industrial or legal action be abandoned. PCS rejected this attempt to divide members. It would have been entirely wrong to sign away the rights of so many members without even making an attempt to secure a settlement that offered protection to all members. A fair settlement is entirely achievable, but only if we stick together, in solidarity.

The Northern Ireland Public Services Association (NIPSA) has also rejected the proposals.

The issue here is simple - the government is attempting to tear up the contractual rights of civil servants in order to steal from us the accrued rights and entitlements accumulated over years of dedicated service. This is so they can drive through tens of thousands of job cuts and privatise services on the cheap.

O'Donnell is making the most of the agreement with the other unions (Prospect, FDA, GMB, Unite and the Prison Officers Association) in order to attack PCS. But the other unions combined represent just 20% of civil service union membership - Prospect representing about 25,000 in specialist roles and the FDA about 12,000 higher paid managers.

GMB and Unite represent small numbers of staff in the Ministry of Defence. In the case of GMB and Unite their members are largely protected by the new arrangements but the other unions are not.

PCS represents 80% of civil service trade union members, and many more in related public services, and is a 'vertical' union - it represents all grades.

Some union leaders just don't want to learn. In 2005 the same people in FDA and Prospect who have just signed up to the government's proposals told PCS that securing pension rights for existing staff was unachievable. By sticking together then the unions secured those rights without even having to take strike action.

PCS will continue to campaign for a fair settlement. The 'agreement' between the five unions is a distraction that will fool no-one. PCS's ballot is now underway and all activists are working hard to secure the best 'yes' vote possible in order to secure the type of agreement their members need and deserve.

  • The ballot runs until 25 February.
  • Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


    In The Socialist 10 February 2010:

    Fight university cuts


    Unison general secretary election

    Fighting leadership needed in Unison - Nominate Roger Bannister for general secretary

    Greenwich Unison backs victimised branch secretary


    Socialist Party news and analysis

    Preying on the living and dead

    Waltham Forest: Campaigners score a victory

    Fiddling MPs: Jail the whole lot of them!

    Vulnerable lose out on benefits

    Socialist Women: Fighting for equality through socialism

    Fast news


    Socialist Party workplace news

    Civil service strike ballot: Vote 'yes' for action

    Boycotting the 2010 SATS in schools

    Coventry youth workers' strike

    Metaldyne workers strike

    Stoke: Axiom workers in overtime ban

    Saving jobs and services in Worcestershire

    Workplace news in brief


    Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

    Hazel Blears must go

    TUSC: Wellingborough socialists make a stand


    PCS young members

    PCS young members network conference

    Bristol job centre workers fight transfer


    Socialist Party feature

    Trade unions in Britain - are they ready for the coming battles?


    International socialist news and analysis

    Northern Ireland: An agreement to cement division

    Sri Lanka President Rajapakse removes his rival, Fonseka

    Tamil Solidarity -: Successful northern conference


    Unison witchhunt

    Trotskyism on trial


    War and occupation

    Armed forces: Release Lance-Corporal Joe Glenton

    Trade union rights for service personnel


     

    Home   |   The Socialist 10 February 2010   |   Join the Socialist Party

    Subscribe   |   Donate  




    Related links:

    Civil Service:

    triangleDriving examiners walkout hits first day of new test

    trianglePCS union says no to pay misery

    trianglePCS pay cap ballot closes soon

    triangleConference on state spies: who's watching who?

    triangleBalloting members on the pay cap

    Strike:

    triangleSchool staff strike against privatisation

    triangleTeachers strike in Sheffield

    triangleDramatic retelling of Grunwick strike

    triangleBrighton Uni lecturers strike against job cuts

    PCS:

    triangleLocal government pay: fight for the 5% claim, fully funded

    trianglePCS Left Unity celebrates 40th anniversary at annual conference

    triangleDWP to outsource more work to Capita

    Unions:

    triangleAfter the budget - unions must launch pay fight

    triangleChatsworth neuro-rehab ward still open - unions join the campaign

    GMB:

    triangleArriva bus strikers stand firm

    Reports and campaigns

    Reports and campaigns

    7/12/17

    RMT

    Anti-DOO lobby of Liverpool's transport committee

    7/12/17

    Blacklisting

    Unite protest against blacklisting

    6/12/17

    Donald Trump

    Mobilise to stop bigoted billionaire Donald Trump's state visit to Britain

    6/12/17

    Transport

    Arriva bus strikers stand firm

    6/12/17

    Pensions

    BT pensions review - oppose the attacks on the pension schemes

    6/12/17

    PCS

    Driving examiners walkout hits first day of new test

    6/12/17

    Newham

    School staff strike against privatisation

    6/12/17

    Rail

    Brutal rail privateer Abellio takes over Midlands rail services

    6/12/17

    PCS

    PCS Left Unity celebrates 40th anniversary at annual conference

    6/12/17

    North Yorkshire

    Court maintains injunction against fracking protesters

    6/12/17

    Waltham Forest

    Waltham Forest Universal Credit protest

    6/12/17

    Coventry

    Coventry Socialist sales hit 1,000

    6/12/17

    TUSC

    TUSC conference to debate 2018 elections

    6/12/17

    Liverpool

    Liverpool John Moores Uni landslide for Socialist Students

    6/12/17

    Kirklees

    Plans to launch no-cuts campaign at Kirklees College

    triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


    Join the Socialist Party
    Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
    Donate to the Socialist Party

    triangle8 Dec Local government pay: fight for the full 5% claim

    triangle6 Dec Strikers rally in Liverpool

    triangle6 Dec Corbyn's Labour can defeat Tories with socialist programme

    triangle5 Dec Victory at Glenfield shows people power can save our NHS

    triangle5 Dec Labour council Blairites deselected

    triangle30 Nov Victory: Glenfield Children's Heart Centre saved!

    triangle30 Nov Dramatic retelling of Grunwick strike

    More ...

    triangle11 Dec Leeds Socialist Party: Campaigning workshop

    triangle11 Dec Bristol North Socialist Party: Christmas Quiz

    triangle12 Dec Birmingham South East Socialist Party: Can the Labour Party be changed?

    triangle12 Dec Liverpool Socialist Party: Fighting council cuts

    More ...

    Socialist Party Facebook page
    Socialist Party on Twitter
    Visit us on Youtube

    Archive

    Archives:

    December 2017

    November 2017

    October 2017

    September 2017

    August 2017

    July 2017

    June 2017

    May 2017

    April 2017

    March 2017

    February 2017

    January 2017

    2016

    2015

    2014

    2013

    2012

    2011

    2010

    2009

    2008

    2007

    2006

    2005

    2004

    2003

    2002

    2001

    2000

    1999

    Legal

    SP RSS feed RSS

    Platform setting: = No platform choice

    V2