They won’t talk, so we must walk – PCS Strike


Strong turnouts reported as members walk out in force

5 April 2013

Tens of thousands of our members are out on strike this afternoon, taking action to try to force the government into talks on pay and terms and conditions.

The highlights of our long weekend of industrial action so far:

  • Over 1,600 members out at the Tyneview Park pension centre in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. Reports of mass of cars exiting the site at same time with members streaming out.
  • Land Registry, Weymouth, 70% on strike, 128 staff out of 183
  • Wrexham, an estimated 70% on strike, as approximately 200 PCS members walk out
  • Grimsby JobCentre Plus, an estimated 75% of members turn out and three new members join
  • MoD Scotland West branch. Nearly all workers reported to have walked out at 1pm, met by 20 cheering activists
  • An estimated 170 workers on strike outside the Cabinet Office in London, shouting “Maude out!”
  • Good turnouts also reported at DWP Salford Quays, IPS Durham, DWP Caxton House and DWP Liverpool.
  • Speaking to around 200 members gathered outside Whitehall, John McInally, PCS national vice president pledged to “right until we win”.
  • John was followed by Mark Serwotka, PCS general secretary, saying: “Making cuts is bad enough, refusing to talk is a disgrace. We’re on strike because we care about the services we deliver. Francis Maude doesn’t care. He should resign.”
  • Mark Serwotka also announced a week of action at the Home Office, beginning in two weeks
  • 100% walk-out reported at Warrington County Court, the building  closing its doors at 1pm
  • 122 members walk out at the Charity Commission in Liverpool
  • More than 100 workers walk out at the Rural Payments Agency in Carlisle.
  • 78% turnout reported at Brighton Jobcentre Plus
  • Wavertree Jobcentre Liverpool, most members walked out at 1pm. JobCentre remained open but offering no service
  • MoJ London tribunals branch, 20 members out and “major disruption caused”
  • DWP Manchester and Salford branch: “Managers phoning customers to re-arrange appointments in last hour. Office closed.”
  • The World Museum and Tate in Liverpool were forced to close their doors early and escort visitors out before 1pm
  • “Tremendous support” for the 1pm strike reported at Saltcoats JobCentre in Ayrshire, Dumfries & Galloway branch with the office only able to provide a “very limited” service
  • DWP Eastern Valley’s Merthyr branch committee report 100% turnout

Mark Serwotka, PCS general secretary, says: “The specific trigger for the strike was the government’s reluctance to talk about these issues.

“If we were in a dialogue we wouldn’t be taking any action. The problem is there’s no dialogue and their attacks are happening. Faced with that we concluded that doing nothing wasn’t an option.”