Civil Servants Vote For Pay Strike
Civil servants have voted in favour of industrial action over pay, pensions and working conditions, leaving the Government facing the prospect of a strike.
Members of the Public and Commercial Services union backed walkouts by 61% and other forms of industrial action by four to one. Turnout was 28%.
The union's leadership will now discuss a programme of strikes and protests, with a decision expected on Wednesday.
The ballot result raises the threat of industrial action by Government employees around the time of the Budget later this month.
The union said that since the onset of the recession in 2008, the real value of wages in the public and private sectors had fallen by 7%.
Median pay in the civil service was 4.4% lower than similar jobs in private firms, rising to 10% for some grades.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: "Civil and public servants are working harder than ever to provide the services we all rely on but, instead of rewarding them, the Government is cutting their pay, raiding their pensions and trying to rip up their basic working conditions.
"We said more than two years ago that austerity wouldn't work and we have been proved right.
"Under this Tory-led government, our economy has flat-lined, we are heading for a triple dip recession and the chancellor has lost his prized AAA credit rating.
"We urgently need to invest our way out of recession, with an end to the economically disastrous pay freeze and job cuts and with a serious clampdown on tax avoidance and evasion."
The union has called for a 5% pay rise for civil servants and is campaigning against plans to change terms and conditions.
PCS officials said the Government had refused to negotiate on issues affecting civil servants.
A Cabinet Office spokesman said: "It is disappointing that yet again the PCS insist on pushing for futile action which benefits no-one, and damages the services they deliver to the public.
"The result from today's ballot shows that the PCS leadership couldn't even convince large swathes of its own membership of the benefits of walkouts."
The Government has frozen public sector pay for two years, with those earning under £21,000 receiving pay increases of at least £250 per year. It claims the move has protected jobs.
what do you think?
Cheek. All the shop workers loosing their jobs and they are going on strike.
i don't agree with strike action but i also don't think we should justify everything against the lowest common denominator. i.e. if somebody is suffering everbody else should be content at suffering a little less!
Do you not think it is selfish, again the public sector will want support from the public but how many would have marched in support of Jessops, Comet, Woolworth, HMV,T,J, Hughes,to name just a few
Yes, Diane, YOUR government just refuses to get the banks to invest and keep on cutting jobs so all those workers who lose their jobs haven't got money to go shopping. Shops lose profits and so sack workers. But your narrow mind can't grasp that, can it?
Good for them. There is no need for all this austerity. We just need to stop giving money away that was never countered for or meant to be countered for in our budgets. By that I mean payments to the EU and benefits paid to those living outside of this country.
Should stop benefits paid to those inside this country who are from outside - maybe they wouldn't be so keen if they had to pay for their rent and medical treatment
People coming into the country from should have to work for a period of time before being allowed to claim benefits and use our health service but I wouldn't stop them altogether. Its about being fair.
i agree with most of your sentiments but don't agree with sttriking.
"People coming into the country from (abroad) should have to work for a period of time before being allowed to claim benefits". This already happens, ABritMum - it's called the Habitual Residency Test.
If they strike, stop their pay and sack the lot.
Nice person you are, typical tory attitude.
Rupert, and your point us
Americans have a saying "Nice guys don't win prizes"
We need a general strike.
Agreed and let some of the unemployed in to do their jobs - free riders. Are this the lot Ted Heath gave inflation proof pensions to?
sack them all
Why do you want to sack them?, im just guessing but you must vote tory because thats a typical tory attitude to workers who want better conditions for themselves.
Rupert, i would swop pay, pensions and working conditions with them
Because they ain't at work doing the job we pay them to do Rupert.
yeah, sack them and give thier jobs to people who would appreciate it.
We wouldnt even notice Johnny
Seems the Civil Service have been using the thumbs down choice - then they do have problems making a written constructive argument :-)
Think yourselves lucky to have jobs, Im self employed and barely scrape by, oh and who do you expect to fund YOUR payrise, ME. Ive not had a payrise for years!
steve, i agree with belt tightening, however many public sector workers have also not had a pay increase in years. btw, if you barely scrape by you will not be the one paying for any pay rises. by the sounds of it you need a better accountant.
Andy, I will swop with them
Andy The vast majority have had a pay rise as the pay freeze was only for those above a certain pay scale which could explain the extremely low turn out
no michael it is not the vast majority. i work with tens of thousands of others that have been subject to a pay freeze for the last few years.
too many middle managers andy
michael. i do agree with that. ; )
i work for the government but agree to the cuts. however people need to realise that throughout the seventies and eighties many of the pensions were bringing in more than was going out, so what did the governments of the time do? they syphoned off the extra and used it for building schools and other projects and now they wonder why they are in deficit. many contribute the legal maximium allowable percentage of their salary to the scheme, that is why they appear so good, after forty years contributions. as i said i'm in favour of belt tighteniing but would like to add some balance to the discussion.
Andy I work for the government and you are talking rowlocks
micheal, i think it would be more construvtive if you specified what you disagree with, then i'll give you the evidence and then you can pretend you didn't read the reply.
What a surprise, civil servants strike AGAIN despite underperforming AGAIN. And AGAIN apart from schools we won't even notice they're not at work out-reaching and co-ordinating...
You're right LA. These cattle-poo job descriptions irritate the hell out of me. Technical Response Co-ordinator, Systems Support Officer, Project Services Analyst, etc. What does it all mean ? What do they do ?
"apart from schools we won't even notice" Strange you would want the hospitals shut - Benefit payments stopped - pensions stopped Nah you would not notice
So 61% of the 28% turn out backed action. So in other words only 17% of the work force want to strike. It is fair that they haven't had a pay rise. Of course not, but then many of us in the private sector haven't also, but I sometimes think that we at least have grasped the reality that we are country which is broke!! We can argue about whose fault it is, and look back all we want, but there is no escaping it we have been living beyond our means for some time. Frankly I don't think Tory, Labour. UKIP or Lord Such or any one else has a plan or will to sort it!
Agreed Major, if people embark on this ''they've had more increase than me'' mentality, where will it end ? Ok, it's not fair, life isn't fair, few of us get what we deserve. It's our own fault for not being Premier League footballers or Westminster gobsmiths.
The country is broke - raise taxes on the self employed - penalise hard workers and companies that employ others - raise benefits That should do the trick and put the final nail in the coffin
Maj - I think UKIP are starting on the right lines - pulling out of the EU could save us all £53Million a day. That would build a lot of infrastructure/Schools/Hospitals etc.
The country is NOT broke.
David,and you think ukip would put the money to schools and hospitals to benefit the people,more likely to privatise the lot to feed the rich. ultra right wing tories.
If you look into the figures a little deeper only 17% of members voted to strike 83% did not vote or voted against hardly a resounding yes vote or a mandate to proceed with strike action
ooh, facts Michael, unions don't like facts.
Will anyone notice if they do go on strike?
You mean like the elections for police commisioners which the Toris loved so much
For most people, private or public, in order to have their pay frozen it would have to be defrosted first.
Aaah unions, don't you just love 'em. things are bad for everyone, we are all tightening our belts and losing out somehow. and then up pop the unions and their sheep like followers in an attempt to make things worse. and they want our support ! ............ never never never.
'Things are bad for everyone'. So just sit back and take it then? That's no argument. 'Their sheep-like followers'? You can't have it both ways, either hardly any of them turned out to vote or they're 'sheep-like', if they are 'sheep-like' as you try to claim, ldn't 100% have turned out? You can't have it both ways.
Not heard off your fellow Tory fanatic Grant Berry for a while...especially after the disastrous Eastleigh by-election. Wonder why?
How I agree with you t.bulgin. Used to work in close proximity to civil servants. They read books, did kniting and now played games on their computers during working hours. They are lucky to have jobs. Strike... no, no, no
The Tories are out in force union bashing a again. Well they have nothing else going for them Roll on the election
Good. I'm glad to see workers sticking up for themselves. As for those who say they're lacking a majority in the turnout, if we used that logic and followed it through the vast majority of MPs would not be in Parliament. Those people on here who are 'anti-striking'. What do you want people to do, just roll over and take it while the Tory/LibDem/Labour 's rich friends receive tax cuts. You sound like a bunch of forelock tuggers.
Strike leader has Â£26,159 paid into his pension pot every year (the average salary of his members is Â£22,850) This is the real face of the unions - stealing from their members
Thought you would awake Chris 56
Hi gillie, how's things with you? X
This lot are not workers. More like scroungers. All paid from the same pot dole scroungers are paid from. Fire the lot of them.
And you are a worker Why ?
I was a member of the PCS until recently as I had a B******* of a boss I left recently as over the last few years my income was frozen - my union subscription was not Obviously members of the union were not in the same boat as the leadership
I was a member of the PCS until recently as I had a B******* of a boss I left recently as over the last few years my income was frozen - my union subscription was not Obviously members of the union were not in the same boat as the leadership Strike leader has £26,159 paid into his pension pot every year (the average salary of his members is £22,850) This is the real face of the unions - stealing from their members
Tell us something we do not know Michael!!!!! Unions are a menace to this country and always have been. We need Maggie back to stand up to them. Good luck in finding another job XX
I'm sorry but anyone who has a stable job in this climate should be grateful and take what they get, the High Street is shutting down, banks are knackered, I work in retail and dread every weeks figures, I do not whinge and moan i'm not getting more, we have no rises or overtime anymore but bat on! and all those who want to strike should be replaced by all the poor retail staff that have lost there jobs and are all computer literate, and deal with customer service and probably always earned less than the lot moaning!!!!
I often wonder who comes up with the government policies Ministers or Civil Servants. Then as you go down the chain when they enact stupid policy all you get is the oldest defense 'it aint me governor its policy'. I wonder just how many would swap their jobs for work in the private sector? All this begs questions what are they worth and what contribution do they make?
who cares if they strike, just replaces them with some of the untold millions of immigrants that have come here. no big deal. failing that just shoot them, most of them are looney brainwashed liberals that have ruined the country.
These muppets get final salary pensions paid for by the taxpayer, do less work than most they should be getting a pay and benefit cut like the rest of society. I wonder how much the head of the Union gets paid another useless overpaid fat cat
Another out of date Union decision. When will these Union leaders join the real world.