Socialist Worker

PCS union should call strikes over threat to job centres

by Nick Clark
Issue No. 2542

Defending job centres from closure in Glasgow

Defending job centres from closure in Glasgow


Resistance to Tory plans to axe half of job centres in Glasgow is growing.

Around 80 trade unionists and campaigners joined a meeting called by the PCS union last Saturday.

PCS president Janice Godrich told the meeting, “We all have a duty and responsibility to fight back against these attacks.”

This is part of a bigger attack on the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) that will shut one in ten job centres across Britain.

Closures will force benefit claimants to travel further. They are more likely to be sanctioned for missing appointments or being late.

Many of the closures will be in some of the most deprived areas.

The Tories also want to close around a fifth of other DWP offices.

The PCS union’s DWP group executive committee (GEC) met last week to plan its fight to save jobs at those sites.

They plan to focus on “hotspot” offices such as Barrow in Furness in Cumbria or Llanelli in Wales, where closure could mean compulsory redundancies.

The GEC also said it would support PCS branches that strike against closure.

Steve West, PCS DWP GEC member, told Socialist Worker in a personal capacity, "In the event of any compulsory redundancies, PCS must be prepared to ballot the entire DWP membership."

It will take strikes to save jobs. At the very least the PCS should call a DWP-wide strike ballot if compulsory redundancies are announced.

Thanks to Drew McEwan

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