The civil service workers’ PCS union is urging its members who work for the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) to reject a pay plan tied to cuts to working conditions.
MoJ bosses have offered workers an average pay increase of 11 percent spread over five years.
This is well below inflation—effectively a pay cut—and comes after nearly a decade of miserly 1 percent annual increases.
The plan also comes with new contracts that increase hours and cut overtime, sick pay and motor and mileage allowances.
The PCS was set to ballot its members in the MoJ from Wednesday of this week, and is urging workers to vote no.
The union also plans to take legal action alongside other civil service unions against the government.
It says the government failed to consult unions properly over civil service pay packages for 2018-19 and wants a judicial review.
It comes after PCS members at government departments across Britain voted to strike over pay, but failed to meet the turnout threshold demanded by Tory anti-union laws.
If MoJ workers vote to reject the pay plan, they could launch a fight that takes the lead in the fight to smash the pay cap across the civil service.
And they can unite with the low-paid cleaners in the UVW union who are already fighting back.