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THANK YOU! 12/07/2011

Posted by pcsdwpsheffield in Uncategorized.
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The branch would like to thank all its members who took industrial action on 30th June, the strongest we have ever seen the turnout for the branch. We also had a great turnout on the picket line of members, and at the rally at lunchtime. Thank you for your solidarity and strength.

Those few crossing the picket line at Hartshead Square and elsewhere were ultimately high-graded staff from other offices, shipped in to cover front line work, or from management teams. This is a real shame and these staff should consider their position with the onslaught on pensions, pay and staffing.

We have now moved to a ‘Work To Rule’ within the Civil Service, which will mean different things to different workplaces. Ultimately, it means not working outside of your job description or basic requirements. This means an overtime ban (overtime mops up the impact of industrial action, and so doing it effectively jeapordises the effect of that action), and not acting up on TDA, or doing any work out of grade. It also means not doing any ‘favours’ for management, or getting involved in any extra work, like focus groups or additional duties. If you have any queries over the implication of ‘Work To Rule’ on your job role, do not hesitate to ask your local rep or ring the union room on 0114 2419803, or PCS Leeds on 0113 2005300.

PCS Members from across the Civil Service come and join the Hartshead Square picket line on 30th June

At last week’s BEC, the branch discussed the way forward for the union’s campaign, and took a strong vote in favour of the below motion. This makes it very clear that one-day strikes will not win the fight, and we will continue to put pressure on the GEC to escalate the action to something more effective. We urge all members to consider donating to the branch hardship fund to support all of us over the next months. The forms are available online at the tab at the top of this page.

Motion EM1 7/7/2011

The PCS DWP Sheffield Branch congratulates the union members who took part in the industrial action on the 30th of June and further commends the unions for calling this action over pensions, pay, and job cuts. June 30th must be seen as only the beginning of an on-going campaign of action and it is vital that unions make plans for the next steps immediately. One day of action is a protest, but what will win is an ongoing dispute and effective strategy.

Our branch position on the following is;

  • We believe that the PCS GEC should consult with local branches and regions to establish areas where industrial action campaigns can take place. The GEC should not merely “finish off” its current campaigns to be able to concentrate on the likely national action in the autumn but rather use the campaigns in DWP (and other groups) to continue the pressure on the government.
  • We believe that the PCS NEC should announce plans to escalate the industrial action over pensions, pay, and job cuts. It is clear from recent announcements by the government that they are not yet close to withdrawing their proposals. We believe that members understand the issues involved in the disputes, and are prepared to take extensive industrial action to defeat the government’s proposals.

We call on the PCS NEC to take a leading role in drawing up plans for a variety of further actions under the current ballots beginning with:-

a)     At least one further national strike day before the end July 2011.

b)     To set out a timetable for further strikes throughout the year, both nationally and regionally based.

c)      Any other action in defence of the above which is particularly damaging to the employer(s), e.g. action short of a strike, work to rule, overtime bans, selective and targeted strike action in particularly hard hitting sections of the workforce etc.

d) We further call on our NEC to start urgent talks with other unions (including those who were on strike on 30th and those who were not) facing job cuts and attacks on pay, pensions and conditions. In such talks the Unions should make the case for these sister unions balloting for strike action against these attacks as a matter of urgency.

We further believe that an effective rank and file strategy to win will involve:

a)     Precise demands made to our employer; you can’t fight to win unless you know what a win would look like.

b)     The input of the workers involved at a grassroots level. This branch should propose to other union branches the formation of a Sheffield Strike Committee.

c)      This branch will instruct its delegates to the town committee to propose a cross PCS all-members meeting titled ‘Where Next After 30th June: A campaign that can win.’ to be called as soon as possible.

Finally, we believe it is vital that rank and file union members are involved in this dispute and we call on the unions taking action on the 30th June to establish strike committees both within and between unions.

Proposed by Rosie Huzzard

Seconded by Tom Bishell

Branch reps and supporter showcasing placards of support for our strike, including one from Sheffield Hallam UCU branch.

All photos in this post taken by our member Robbie Grayson from Sheffield Contact Centre. You can see more on his site, http://www.flickr.com/photos/robbieuk/

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