Civil servants strike over changes to redundancy payments

More than a quarter of a million civil servants are expected to strike today over planned cuts to their redundancy entitlement.

Up to 270,000 members of the Public Services and Commercial Union (PCS) are staging a 48-hour national strike over proposed cuts of up to one-third on compensation payments for compulsory and voluntary redundancies and early retirements, writes the Times.

Striking staff include job centre, courts, border control and tax office workers. Metropolitan Police officers will have to take 999 calls, with up to 1,000 of their civilian colleagues striking.

The proposed changes would see redundancy payments cut to a maximum of two years’ salary from the current limit of three years’ pay, and would take effect from April 2010 for voluntary redundancies and April 2011 for compulsory redundancies.

The PCS claims the unions were not fully consulted about the changes.

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “Loyal civil and public servants won’t stand by and allow the government to cut jobs on the cheap.

“Under these imposed changes they face losing up to one-third of their entitlements and tens of thousands of pounds.”

Serwotka also accused the government of ‘tearing up the contracts of low-paid civil servants’ while claiming it was powerless to deal with the issue of bankers’ bonuses.

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