Strike threat over loss of security screens

JobCentre
staff are threatening national strike action over Government plans to remove
security screens at the new JobCentre plus pilot offices in Streatham and
Brent.

More
than 400 members of the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) at Neasden,
Streatham, Balham and Wandsworth are already on strike and the union plans to
ballot more than 2,000 members in Benefits Agency and Employment Service
offices throughout England, Scotland and Wales, starting on Friday (14
September).

PCS
official Frank Bonner, said, "Only yesterday we received a report of a
security guard in Bradford being assaulted by a member of the public wielding a
hammer. Removing security screens from benefit offices will place many more of
our members at risk of this kind of assault."

The
Government wants to merge JobCentres and benefit offices and remove screens to
make them more ‘personal and friendly’.

By
Ben Willmott

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