Home Office staff vote for strike
Jul 19 2012
Thousands of staff at the Home Office, including airport immigration workers, have voted to go on strike over jobs, pay and other issues, raising the threat of industrial action hitting the Olympics.
The Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) said 57% of its members had backed a campaign of action in protest at cuts.
Union leaders will meet on Thursday to decide their next move, which could include a walkout at border controls at ports and airports including Heathrow as well as other forms of industrial action such as a ban on overtime.
The union could also decide on new tactics including targeting departments such as the Criminal Records Bureau or Passport Office.
Any strike just before the opening ceremony of the Olympics on July 27 could have a big impact on people travelling to the UK to watch the event, the union believes.
The PCS is in dispute with the Home Office on several issues, including plans to cut 8,500 jobs, the threat of compulsory redundancies in the passport office in Newport, South Wales, a 1% pay rise cap following a two-year wage freeze, privatisation of services, and alleged victimisation of union reps.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said the issues which have caused the dispute were flaring in other Government departments, which could also lead to industrial action.
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