There were two sides to the story at this year’s PCS conference.
On the one hand the National Museum of Wales strikers on their fifth week of an all-out strike inspired conference with a feeling of excitement about the possibility of fighting back.
If they were to win following the success at the National Gallery last year it would mean local PCS disputes have put all-out strikes back on the map. The union can confidently consider rolling out all-out strike as the best way to win.
In stark contrast, the PCS leadership opposed national strikes against compulsory redundancies.
It pushed through a recommendation to accept a pay deal in DWP despite anger against it. Many DWP activists will continue to campaign for a no vote in the ballot.
The challenge of how to move from local resistance to the national action needed to take on the government was not seriously discussed.
The challenge for PCS is not just to make sure local action is successful, but to use the lessons from these to move to national action.
The Tories are pushing ahead with plans to close down Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) offices and slash hundreds of jobs.
A move to close the Sheffield BIS office was confirmed on Thursday of last week.
The announcement came as PCS union members struck against the plans, with as many as 100 strikers joining picket lines.
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