PCS announces third all-out strike to 'pile pressure' on government

Union says government is "refusing to listen" to demands over pay, pensions, redundancy terms and job security
PCS all-out strike on 15 March: Spring Budget day. Photo: Guy Bell/Alamy

By Tevye Markson

28 Mar 2023

The civil service’s biggest union has announced a third "all-out" strike.

Up to 133,000 PCS members will walk out on 28 April, adding to industrial action planned in the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the Passport Office and Ofgem next month.

The "payday" walkout, which follows similar industrial action on 1 February and 15 March, was agreed on Monday afternoon by members of the union’s executive committee. It means PCS members in the more than 120 government departments and other organisations which have voted to strike could walk out.

PCS said the latest action, which is part of the union’s campaign over pay, pensions, redundancy terms and job security, would “pile the pressure” on a government that “refuses to listen”.

Mark Serwotka, PCS’s general secretary said: “Our members are not backing down in this dispute.

“Ministers need to take notice that we’re escalating our action and they need to resolve the dispute by putting money on the table.

“We know our strikes have already caused serious disruption. The new strikes and another national day of action will pile the pressure on a government that refuses to listen.”

PCS also announced strikes at Ofgem yesterday, with officials in Canary Wharf and Glasgow set to walk out from 10-14 April and on 17 April. This comes on top of five weeks of strikes in the Passport Office from 3 April until 3 May .

Additionally, on Friday, PCS announced action short of strike at Defra and three of its agencies starting on 11 April.

PCS is demanding a 10% pay rise for civil servants in 2022-23, but ministers have so far refused to negotiate the standing 2-3% pay offer imposed last year without the agreement of unions. 

In contrast, the government has agreed a pay deal for NHS workers which includes a pay bump in 2022-23 as well as improved terms in 2023-24. It has also made an offer to teachers which also includes a bonus for this year.

PCS is also seeking reduced pensions contributions and commitments to retain jobs and current redundancy terms. 

The union is reballoting most of its members so that they can continue striking after the current six-month legal mandate for industiral action in 124 groups expires on 6 May.

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