PCS news digest 4 May

4 May 2012

Mark Serwotka's appearance on Question Time is among the reports, campaign articles and media releases from the past week in the weekly news digest.

4 May

Lord Hutton lands £1,000-a-day pensions job after slashing millions of workers’ retirement pots – Daily Mirror

Former Pensions Secretary Lord Hutton has been appointed chairman of the civil service’s new part-privatised pensions arm, reported the Daily Mirror.

Families who borrowed during boom ‘must accept some blame for crisis’ as slump costs every household £30,000 – Daily Mail

People who borrowed too much during the economic boom must 'accept responsibility' for their part in the financial crisis as banks are not solely to blame, a senior cabinet minister has said, reported the Daily Mail.

3 May

Mark Serwotka on Question Time – BBC1

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka received considerable support as he outlined the alternative to austerity on the BBC’s flagship political discussion show.

Firefighters to join 10 May strike – union-news.co.uk

Hundreds of MoD firefighters are to strike on 10 May, furious that the government’s imposed pension changes will make them poorer in retirement, reported the Union-News website.

Unemployment rates stagnate across Europe – HR magazine

Unemployment in the Eurozone has remained stagnant at 10.2% according to the EU’s statistical office Eurostat.

2 May

Union hopes strikes will lead to more talks – This is Staffordshire

Members of the drivers' union Aslef at East Midlands Trains (EMT) walked out for 24 hours and are planning further stoppages tomorrow and on May 8, 10, 15 and 17, reported the This Is Staffordshire website.

The sick cost of cuts to benefits – Daily Mirror

The government is hammering those struggling with serious ill health as ministers bring in more welfare reforms this week.

1 May

Are passport control queues the result of government cuts? – Guardian

The government is blaming the weather for recent long waits at border control. But with a recruitment freeze in place, the Guardian’s Polly Curtis asks what effect are the cuts having?

Plymouth MoD staff to strike over pensions plan – This Is Plymouth

Dozens of Ministry of Defence workers in the Westcountry are to go on strike over government plans to change their pensions, reported thisisplymouth.co.uk

30 April

Great Pensions Robbery Day – PCS website

PCS reported that millions of public sector workers were seeing the government's attacks on state and public sector pensions directly hit their pay as increased pension contributions kicked in.

Ministers spin off civil service pension scheme as mutual – Public Finance

The government has relaunched the civil service pension scheme as a mutual joint venture, partly owned by staff and government and partly by a private firm, reported publicfinance.co.uk

29 April

HMRC chairman quits after tax deal controversy – Sunday Telegraph

Mike Clasper is to stand down after a spate of high profile controversies surrounding the tax authority’s alleged close relationship with a number of large companies. 

Union anger at low-risk rating for tough jobs – Independent on Sunday

Relatives of a young man killed in January while working at Immingham docks on the Humber estuary were among thousands who gathered in services nationwide to mark Workers’ Memorial Day.

28 April

Revolt grows over child benefit – Financial Times

Chancellor George Osborne is facing a new rebellion from his Conservative colleagues over the government’s plans to take away child benefit from higher earners, reported the Financial Times.

MoD staff join big pensions strike – Morning Star

Militant union members of the Ministry of Defence and other government departments will walk out on strike on May 10 in protest over pensions, reported the Morning Star.

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