PCS: Defending check-off in DWP

The PCS civil service union has lodged papers with the high court seeking a declaration that PCS members in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have a contractual right to pay their union subs by the check-off method (paid directly from salaries).

In response, the DWP has agreed to delay ending check-off by one month, until the end of April, to allow the case to be heard by the courts.

The attack on check-off is a union-busting move pushed by the Con-Dem government. But PCS in DWP already has over 75% of its current members signed over to pay their subs by direct debit instead.

Fran Heathcote, DWP group president and Socialist Party member, said: “We are confident that our legal position is strong. Whilst this is a significant step in our campaign against the government’s removal of check-off and a welcome extension to the time that our members have to switch their payments over to direct debit, it would be a massive mistake to rely on the courts and take our foot off the pedal.

“We are continuing to pull out all of the stops to encourage all of our members to sign up to direct debit, whatever the outcome of the court case. The attack is clearly politically motivated and the best response is to sign everybody up to show that PCS won’t be defeated by these bullying tactics.”

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