A joint strike by teachers, nurses and civil servants could spoil Gordon Brown’s first summer as prime minister, after union members voted today to prioritise industrial action.
Delegates at the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) annual conference in Brighton passed a motion to seek co-ordinated action across the public services.
They also voted unanimously to “intensify” their campaign against pay levels, job cuts and privatisation in the Civil Service.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka revealed a letter from public sector union Unison, which represents nurses among other groups, offering support for joint industrial action.
He also said the National Union of Teachers had carried a motion to ballot for co-ordinated action.
Serwotka said: “These are further signs that our call for co-ordinated action is paying off. If we stand together, we are stronger.”
He said there could be “widespread industrial action” by the end of the summer.
PCS members held one-day strikes on 31 January and 1 May this year, and Serwotka refused to rule out longer walk-outs in the future.
Unions are angry because the chancellor has capped public sector pay settlements at 2% despite inflation edging to 4.5%.