Civil Service strike: Around 100,000 civil servants vote to walkout over pay, pensions and jobs

Members of the PCS union have voted to strike over pay, pensions and jobs (Gina Kalsi/PA Wire)
Members of the PCS union have voted to strike over pay, pensions and jobs (Gina Kalsi/PA Wire)

Around 100,000 civil servants have voted for a national strike over pay, pensions and jobs, the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) has announced.

The union called it “a fantastic result with a massive average Yes vote for industrial action across the areas balloted of 86.2%, the highest percentage vote in the union’s history.”

It said 126 “employer areas” crossed the 50% turnout threshold required by law for strike action and returned a majority vote in favour of striking. Industrial action can be held in these areas.

“We are now in a position to call significant industrial action in support of our claim for a 10% pay rise, pensions justice, job security and and no cuts to redundancy terms”, a statement from the union said.

It said it was to publish the full results, including the sectors that will be affected. Those to strike could include border force officials, driving test examiners and Jobcentre staff.

The union warned that unless it receives "substantial proposals" from the government, it will announce a programme of "sustained industrial action" on November 18.

General secretary Mark Serwotka said: "The government must look at the huge vote for strike action across swathes of the Civil Service and realise it can no longer treat its workers with contempt.

"Our members have spoken and if the government fails to listen to them, we'll have no option than to launch a prolonged programme of industrial action reaching into every corner of public life.

"Civil servants have willingly and diligently played a vital role in keeping the country running during the pandemic but enough is enough.

"The stress of working in the civil service, under the pressure of the cost-of-living crisis, job cuts and office closures means they've reached the end of their tethers.”

A government spokesperson said: "We regret this decision and remain in regular discussion with unions and staff.

"As the public would expect, we have plans in place to keep essential services running and minimise any potential disruption if strikes do go ahead.

"The public sector pay awards are a careful balance between delivering value for money for the taxpayer and recognising the importance of public sector workers."