Public and Commercial Services Union
|Full name||Public and Commercial Services Union|
|Affiliation||TUC, ICTU, STUC, NSSN|
|Key people||Mark Serwotka, general secretary
Janice Godrich, president
|Office location||London, England|
The Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) is the fifth largest trade union in the United Kingdom. Most of its members work in government departments and other public bodies although some work for private companies.
The union was founded in 1998 by the merger of the Public Services, Tax and Commerce Union (which mostly represented the executive 'managerial' grades of the Civil Service) and the Civil and Public Services Association (mostly representing the administrative grades). The General Secretaries of the two unions, John Sheldon and Barry Reamsbottom respectively, became Joint General Secretaries of the new union. Sheldon retired in 2000. Opinion was divided between whether Reamsbottom should remain as sole General Secretary until his retirement date, or holding an election. An election was called and, despite continued disagreement, Mark Serwotka was confirmed as having been duly elected. Serwotka has held the position since, last re-elected in 2009 for a five year term.
Membership and organisation
The union has over 250,000 members and is the largest trade union representing civil servants in the UK.
PCS is organised into groups that deal with different bargaining units such as Revenue and Customs, Department for Work and Pensions and Law and Justice.
Strikes involving PCS members
In November 2004, PCS workers across government departments undertook a one-day strike in protest against government plans to cut the Civil Service by 20%. This action was followed by further one-day strikes on 31 January and 1 May 2007.
Three one day strikes over pay in Liverpool Museums.
On 8 March 2010, 270,000 civil servants began a 48 hour strike over government changes to redundancy payments.
The union voted for a one-day strike on 30 June 2011.
There were stints of hour strikes during the summer months of 2011 but these were not full walk outs.
A further strike was voted for by members for 30 November 2011, over pensions negotiations with the government.
There was a three-hour strike on 12 December 2011 over privatisation of call centres, with further action planned for 16 and 31 January 2012.
Action was planned for 16 and 31 January 2012. Although original hopes of a national strike on 28 March, only a London strike materialised, due to lack of support from other unions rejecting national strikes. The PCS later joined a national strike on May 10 alongside UCU, NIPSA and Unite (Health)
PCS has a network for young members (aged 27 and under).
PCS has a network for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender members.
PCS has a network for associate and retired members.
- "About PCS". Public and Commercial Services Union Website. Retrieved 25 March 2012.
- "Thousands of HMRC staff strike over job cuts". BBC. Retrieved 28 August 2013.
- Daniels, Gary; McIlroy, John, eds. (2009), "Trade Unions in a Neoliberal World", Routledge Research in Employment Relations Series (Taylor & Francis) 20: 154, ISBN 9780415426633
- "Mark Serwotka re-elected". PCS News centre. 17 December 2009. Retrieved 31 March 2011.
- "PCS union renews pension strike threat". BBC. 11 January 2012. Retrieved 9 September 2012.
- "Third one day strike to hit Liverpool museums". PCS. 22 August 2007. Retrieved 21 January 2012.
- "270,000 civil servants join 48-hour strike". BBC. 8 March 2010. Retrieved 8 March 2010.
- McSmith, Andy; Morris, Nigel (16 June 2011). "Britain walks out: UK braced for biggest wave of strikes since the 1980s". The Independent. Retrieved 15 June 2011.
- "Union put brave face on strike turn out and insist walkout was 'best ever' response". Daily Mail (London). 1 July 2011. Retrieved 1 July 2011.
- "Defend call centres from privateers". PCS. 3 January 2012. Retrieved 5 January 2012.