PCS news digest 16 December

16 December 2011

This weekly news digest is a summary of news, campaign articles, media releases and reports from the past week

16 December

Computer firm bugged by strikers – UnionNews

The UnionNews website reported that Unite members employed by IT services company Steria UK Ltd working on a Capita account went on strike in protest against the company’s refusal to offer a pay rise for 2010 (payable from April 2011).

Government creating a lost generation – Right to Work

A letter published in the Guardian from campaign group Right To Work said it is now clear the government is creating a lost generation of young people. The latest Office for National Statistics figures reveal unemployment has reached a staggering 2.64 million, its highest level since 1994, with youth unemployment rising to 1.027 million, the highest level since these records began in 1992.


15 December

Maude savaged for ‘misleading’ pension claims – Morning Star

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude outraged public sector unions when he claimed that a resolution to the dispute over attacks on staff pensions would be reached “next week”, reported the Morning Star.

DVLA office closure threat – Sheffield Telegraph

Sheffield has been dealt a ‘blow’ with the news its DVLA office could shut next year – axing more public sector jobs – under new government plans.


14 December

Jobcentre staff threaten strike as unemployment rises – PCS

The PCS website ran an article saying jobcentre staff in an area of high unemployment are threatening strike action as the number of those out of work rises again.

Poor families facing a ‘triple whammy’ of benefit, support and service cuts – Guardian

In an interview with the Guardian Alison Garnham, head of the Child Poverty Action Group, said the coalition's policies could do more harm even than Thatcher.


13 December

Tory-led benefit cuts ‘could breach human rights’ – Daily Mirror

Benefit cuts may leave people so poor it could breach their human rights, politicians have warned.

Britain is ruled by the banks, for the banks - Guardian

The Guardian asked is David Cameron’s kid-glove treatment of the City remotely justified, when it neither pays its way nor lends effectively?

DVLA’s ‘outrageous’ office closures will be fought - PCS

Plans announced to close the DVLA's 39 local offices around the UK, putting 1,200 jobs at risk, make no economic sense and will be fiercely resisted, said the PCS website.

Serwotka: Government abandoned high streets by closing jobcentres - BBC2

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka appeared on the Daily Politics on BBC2 to talk about national action, rejuvenating high streets and Europe


12 December

Unemployment is world’s fastest-rising fear survey – BBC website

Unemployment is the world's fastest-rising worry, a BBC World Service survey covering 11,000 people in 23 countries suggests.

Thousands of jobs and millions in taxes threatened by cut in solar power subsidies – Independent

The Independent said up to 29,000 jobs and £230m a year in taxes will be under threat today, as the Government controversially slashes solar power subsidies, environment group Friends of the Earth (FOE) says.

Shropshire tax workers on strike over jobs – Shropshire Star

Hundreds of tax workers across Shropshire went on strike as part of a national walk-out over jobs and privatisation of services and a ‘punitive’ sickness absence system, reported the Shropshire Star.


11 December

Tax workers strike over privatisation and conditions – PCS

The PCS website reported that tax officials were set to go on strike on 12 December against a plan to hand sensitive data over to private companies and put jobs at risk.

Just who do the young TURCs think they are? – UnionNews

The UnionNews website looks at the newly-formed Trade Union Reform Campaign wants an end to facility time, the scrapping of the Trade Union Modernisation and Learning funds, and demands accountability and transparency about trade union money.


10 December

One small Greek island’s relentless struggle to get by – Red Pepper

Chris Jones reports for Red Pepper magazine on what Greece’s crisis means for daily life on the island of Samos.

Revenue chief who approved Goldman Sachs tax deal announces retirement – Guardian

The head of Revenue and Customs is to retire in the wake of revelations about his organisation's decisions to waive millions of pounds owed by corporations, reported the Guardian.

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