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Further week of strike action at Sheffield Eastern Avenue Jobcentre-PCS article 14/07/2017

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(Article from PCS Website)

Members at the jobcentre on Eastern Avenue in Sheffield are taking another week of strike action next week, in their campaign to fight the closure of the office.

Following on from the extremely well supported previous six days of strike action (held on Friday 2 of June and week commencing 12 June) members at the jobcentre on Eastern Avenue in Sheffield will be taking another week of strike action, beginning on Monday 17 July 2017.

Since the last action took place DWP has announced the full list of office closures, and Eastern Avenue is confirmed as a closure site. Members are determined that the site should remain open, and that the vital services that they provide to one of the most deprived areas of the city of Sheffield should remain local and accessible.

There continues to be strong support from local MPs, the city council, Unite Community and Disabled People Against the Cuts, amongst others. The PCS Parliamentary Group was briefed on the full impact of the closures on Tuesday this week, and the DWP GEC meets today (14 July) to discuss Eastern Avenue and the wider campaign. Two further submissions for strike action to defend jobcentre closures have now been received.

There will be a picket at Eastern Avenue every day next week from 7:30am.

How you can help

  • If you are in the area, please come and join the picket line.  The full address is of the jobcentre is 19 Eastern Avenue, Sheffield S2 2FZ.
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The National Shop Steward Network have called for support for the Eastern Avenue Strikers 12/07/2017

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The National Shop Steward Network have called for support for the Eastern Avenue Strikers.

“The government is abandoning unemployed, sick and disabled people, and putting hundreds of jobs at risk, by confirming today the closure of almost one in 10 jobcentres. The news comes as we announce our members in Eastern Avenue jobcentre in Sheffield, one of the threatened sites, will strike again from 17 to 21 July following a week-long walkout in June.”

“When our 50 members in Eastern Avenue walked out for five days in June shadow chancellor John McDonnell sent a message of support, saying: “The DWP has forced through this office closure programme with no consideration for either the service or the staff.”

Our general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “While we are pleased a handful of threatened sites will now stay open, thanks to the hard work of our members, community groups and local MPs, it is utterly disgraceful that DWP is pressing ahead with these closures.”

“This Tory government is abandoning unemployed, sick and disabled people, making it harder for them to access the services they need, and putting jobcentre jobs at risk. We will continue to oppose these plans in every way we can.”

PCS DWP President Fran Heathcote said, “Our DWP Group Executive (GEC) is meeting this Friday and we be supporting our branches in fighting this attack on our members and claimants.”

Read the full article here.

 

Update on Eastern Avenue strike from Branch Secretary 11/07/2017

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pcs%20logo

All,

The fight continues to save Eastern Avenue Jobcentre!

Members are again taking strike action for 5 days starting on 17/7/17.

The proposal has changed into a decision but recent experiences show that the government can be pressurised to change positions.

The branch needs support on the picket line and funding for strike pay for our members.

Please contact me if you able to help with either.

Tom Bishell
Branch Secretary PCS DWP Sheffield

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Eastern Avenue Staff Members Meeting 10/07/2017

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All Members Meeting Eastern Avenue 110717

Mark Serwotkas Speech at London Rally on 1st July mentioning Eastern Avenue strikers 06/07/2017

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Local MP Louise Haigh slams decision to close Eastern Avenue jobcentre 05/07/2017

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Sheffield Heeley MP Louise Haigh, today said:

“This bogus consultation answered none of the key concerns we put to the department.

They have no idea how much it will save, no idea how much will need to be spent to increase capacity in the city centre and have shockingly refused to even publish the impact assessment before the decision was made.

By pressing ahead with closures in the teeth of opposition from local communities and staff, it is clearer than ever that the Government isn’t interested in communities like ours.

Residents, staff and the local community will rightly conclude that the Government never had any interest in keeping open this vital local service.”

Read more here.

Eastern Avenue strikers make the front page! 05/07/2017

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PCS People

Eastern Avenue strikers make the front page of the most recent issue of PCS’s national magazine.

Read the whole issue here.

Eastern Avenue staff attend London march 05/07/2017

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London March

Staff from the threatened Eastern Avenue Jobcentre site marched with 1’000s of fellow protesters in anger at the plans to close the vital centre.

Mark Serwotka spoke at the rally at the end of the march and made reference to the Eastern Avenue campaign.

Find out more here:-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-40468881

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-40469081/thousands-join-anti-austerity-march-in-london

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/not-one-day-more-protest-thousands-gather-in-central-london-for-march-against-theresa-may-a3577596.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/not-one-day-more-london-protest_uk_5957c25ee4b02734df32a783

Photos from Public Meeting about Eastern Avenue 19/06/2017

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A second public meeting as part of the ongoing the campaign to oppose the proposed closure of Eastern Avenue Jobcentre took place on Monday the 12th of June at the Manor Estate Social Club.

Around 75 people from the affected site, local community groups, and members of the public attended.

Speakers Mark Serwotka and representatives from Disabled People Against Cuts, Unite Community South Yorkshire Branch the local PCS Branch spoke passionately about the need to maintain vital public services in the surrounding community.

The meeting was then opened up to all attendees for question and comments.

Full support was given by the meeting attendees to the campaign.

Shadow chancellor gives support to Eastern Avenue strikers 13/06/2017

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John McDonnell sent the following message of solidarity to striking DWP members attending a public meeting in Sheffield last night, at the end of the first of five days of strike action.

“I send my solidarity to you in support of the action you are taking. The DWP has forced through this office closure programme with no consideration for either the service or the staff. You have my support.”

Read the article in full here.

Eastern Avenue strikers hold their ground 13/06/2017

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June 12th Picket LineThe Save Eastern Avenue Campaign entered into the second phase of strike of action with a week-long strike starting on the 12th of June.  Members remained solid and only a handful of staff went in to work to defend the threatened site.

On each day the pickets have been out in force and the majority of staff on strike have done their part in showing their strength of feeling by picketing.

Management were forced to ship staff in from other sites to keep the doors opening, but offering a very much reduced service to the public.

Call to support Eastern Avenue Pickets and attend Public Meeting 11/06/2017

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save-eastern-avenue

Please help support our campaign to keep Eastern Avenue Jobcentre open by visiting the picket line next week (Monday to Friday from 6.50am) and attending the public meeting with Mark Serwotka (PCS General Secretary) and other guest speakers at 7pm Monday 12 June 2017 at the Manor Estate Social Club on City Road.

Web Articles Reporting on Eastern Avenue Campaign 11/06/2017

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Staff at Sheffield job centre set to walk out over proposed closure

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa – World Socialist Web Site

DWP staff strike over proposed Jobcentre closure | Civil Service World

Eastern Avenue Job Centre must be kept open

Sheffield Live!

http://www.katebelgrave.com/2017/06/why-were-on-strike-eastern-avenue-jobcentre-staff-go-out-against-jobcentre-closures/

Staff at Sheffield job centre set to walk out over proposed closure

Unite the Resistance | Support DWP Sheffield Eastern Avenue strike on Friday 2 June

http://www.shefnews.co.uk/2017/05/18/to-strike-or-not-to-strike-eastern-avenue-job-center-saga-continues/

https://socialistworker.co.uk/art/44737/Jobcentre+workers+strike+against+closures+in+Sheffield

Eastern Avenue Strike and Public Meeting 08/06/2017

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Eastern Avenue Public Meeting Page 1Eastern Avenue Public Meeting Page 2

Letters of support for Eastern Avenue strikers flood in! 02/06/2017

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Letters of support for the Eastern Avenue Strikers have been received from:-

* Sheffield Trades Union Council
* PCS DWP North East & Mid Wales Branch
* PCS Yorkshire and Humber Regional Committee
* PCS North Wales/North West Revenue and Customs Branch
* Edinburgh Trade Union Council
* PCS Ministry of Justice Northern Wales Branch
* Unite Community South Yorkshire
* PCS DWP Durham House Branch
* PCS DWP Group Assistant Secretary
* Black Activists Rising Against Cuts
* PCS London & South East Regional Committee
* PCS DWP Birmingham South Branch

Thanks to everyone for your kind words of support!

PCS website update on Eastern Avenue strike 02/06/2017

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(Quotes from PCS website-Read article in full here.)

PCS members at the DWP Sheffield Eastern Avenue jobcentre have taken strike action today over the proposed closure of the office which provides vital services to the community.

Today members took a day’s strike action and will take another five days starting on Monday 12 June.

The strike today was very well supported.

Managers from other sites were brought over to keep the jobcentre open to the public but they would have received a much reduced service.

There was a large picket line outside the office with up to 45 members and reps there at one point.  DWP group president Fran Heathcote was on the picket line and other supporters include local Labour candidates Louise Haigh and Paul Bloomfield and Natalie Bennett from the Green Party.

Local rep Jamie Godfrey said, “The massive picket line and support from the community this morning has been great. It shows we are doing the right thing defending our jobcentre from closure and I’m proud to be part of the PCS campaign.”

 

 

Sheffield Star coverage of the strike 02/06/2017

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http://www.thestar.co.uk/news/staff-strike-to-oppose-closure-plans-for-eastern-avenue-jobcentre-1-8575271

Amazing turnout for first day of Eastern Avenue Strike 02/06/2017

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Eastern Avenue staff and comrades taking part in the first day of strike action in defense of the threatened site:-.

 

Support the Eastern Avenue Strikers by giving online below! 27/05/2017

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https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/PCSDWPSHEFFIELD

Eastern Avenue Strike 27/05/2017

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Eastner Avenue Strike Page 1Eastner Avenue Strike Page 2