Socialist Worker

DVLA safety strikes hit the bosses hard

by Nick Clark
Issue No. 2762

Strikers have held firm

Strikers have held firm (Pic: PCS DVLA)


Targeted strikes by workers at the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) have caused a huge backlog of applications for renewed driving licences.

People with medical ­conditions, or who are over 70, must renew their licence every one, two, three or five years. But strikes by ­workers now mean the DVLA is taking months to process every application.

And the workers who process them were set to strike again on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of this week.

The strikes are part of a long‑running battle by ­workers at the DVLA offices in Swansea over coronavirus safety.

Bosses want to push more of them back to work in the office—despite more than 600 workers there catching Covid. And the workers’ PCS union says the DVLA’s own figures show cases at the site are increasing once more.

PCS members have been fighting a rolling campaign of targeted action designed to cause as much disruption as possible over a long period.

Striker and PCS rep Mac told Socialist Worker, “The backlog is piling up. They’re clearly panicking about that—they’re offering a lot of overtime.”

He added that the Drivers Medical department—on strike this week—“is probably the most backlogged area.”

“There are lots of ­complaints coming through,” he said. Yet bosses still haven’t budged—and the action could escalate. The strikers will need solidarity—their battle for Covid safety is one that the whole trade union movement should support.

Donate to the strike fund. Name: Fighting Fund Levy. Account number: 20331490 Sort code: 60-83-01, Reference: DVLA. Messages of support and invite strikers to speak at your union branch [email protected].
 
  • Outsourced cleaners at the department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy headquarters in London have voted to strike. The workers, employed by outsourcer ISS, voted by 97 percent on an 82 percent turnout, to strike over pay and working conditions.

The members of the PCS union staged an indefinite strike for the London Living Wage in 2019.


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