Defend trade union rights at DCLG
The campaign has been launched after the decision by Eric Pickles to end, without any consultation, the check-off system for collecting union subscriptions within the department. PCS believes that DCLG has no legal right to unilaterally change something that it regards as a term or condition of employment.
This move is part of a wider attack on union rights across Whitehall. In October 2012 the Cabinet Office announced a cut of more than 50 per cent in the civil service facility time budget which severely restricted the ability of elected workplace reps to represent their members individually and collectively. The Cabinet Office also introduced restrictions on the number of union reps on full paid release.
Eric Pickles has been a cheerleader for the attack by the political right on the rights of unions and union reps and is a supporter of the so-called Trade Union Reform Campaign. Shortly after the Cabinet Office decision to reduce facility time in the civil service, Pickles released ‘50 ways to save – Examples of sensible savings in local government’ which urged local authorities, under the guise of saving money, to attack trade union rights.
The fact that the administration costs for the check off arrangements is just £28.20 a month – a figure confirmed by senior DCLG officials – confirms that this move has nothing to do with saving money and everything to do with an ideologically motivated hatred of trade unions.
PCS is taking the DCLG to court on September 3rd to fight this attack. You can support the campaign by joining an e-action to the DCLG permanent Secretary Sir Bob Kerslake at www.pcs.org.uk/dclgsolidarity