Socialist Worker

Civil service union set for national pay ballot

by Candy Udwin PCS national executive (personal capacity)
Issue No. 2604

Striking Acas workers on the picket line in Newcastle

Striking Acas workers on the picket line in Newcastle

PCS union members have the chance to lead the way in the fight against poverty pay by voting for a national statutory strike ballot.

Debates to launch the ballot will come at PCS group and annual delegate conferences in Brighton from Monday.

Everyone should support the motion for a ballot. But once we’ve done that, we need a campaign involving every activist aimed at smashing through the 50 percent turnout threshold and delivering a resounding yes vote.

More than 70,000 PCS members showed they were prepared to strike in the consultative ballot we held last year. They can be the backbone for a strong strike vote.

Campaigns and leafleting led by regional activist committees will be crucial. We can use this ballot to breathe new life into the union.

We can recruit new members and train up new activists.


Most importantly, we have to show people that we can win. We are confronting a weak and divided government, and the Labour Party leadership are friends of our union.

This can be a fight that focuses widespread anger at the Tories—and maybe even helps to bring the government down.

  • Workers at conciliation service Acas—which mediates between bosses and unions in industrial disputes—walked out on a national strike last Friday.

There were good turnouts on picket lines in Manchester, London, Newcastle, Leeds, Nottingham, Birmingham and Glasgow. And over 50 people joined a lunch time rally in support of the strike in the centre of Manchester.

PCS members are fighting against changes forced on them by Acas bosses. The changes include downgrading, as well as unmanageable workloads.

Workers plan two more strikes on 6 and 7 June.

Donate to the strike fund.Cheques payable to PCS BEIS hardship to BEIS group treasurer, 9 Medina Way, Upper Stratton, Swindon, SN2 7NW or transferred to bank account 20240992 sort code 60-83-01

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