PCS news digest 16 March

16 March 2012

This weekly news digest is a summary of news, campaign articles, media releases and reports from the past week

16 March

Workers ready to fight for pensions – Express and Star

Public sector workers still have an appetite for industrial action over pensions amid “confusion” about the Government’s controversial reforms, according to a new study, reported the Express and Star.

Navy support workers to strike – ThisIsJersey.com

Hundreds of workers at the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) are to go on strike at the end of the month in the bitter row over public sector pensions, reported the This Is Jersey website.

NHS reforms: 100 voices – Guardian

The health and social care bill represents the biggest reorganisation of the NHS in England since it was created in 1948. Some argue the reforms are much needed. Critics say they will be a disaster. Here a hundred people who work in or with the NHS tell the Guardian what the changes mean for them.


15 March

Open new national pension scheme to middle income workers demand MPs – Daily Telegraph

The Daily Telegraph reported that "Complex" restrictions on the Government's scheme to support the millions of workers who will be automatically placed into workplace pensions must be removed to ensure its success, MPs have warned.

Osborne’s austerity drive cut 270,000 public sector jobs last year – Guardian

More than 30,000 NHS workers and 71,000 in education were among more than a quarter of a million public sector staff who lost their jobs in 2011 as the government's austerity measures started to bite, reported the Guardian.


14 March

Despite string of fraud probes A4e gets more state contracts – Daily Mail

The embattled firm owned by David Cameron's former 'back-to-work' tsar Emma Harrison has been handed two new state contracts worth up to £30million, reported the Daily Mail.

“How much money did we make off the client?”: Goldman Sachs resignation letter blasting culture of “toxic” greed goes viral – Daily Mirror

A senior Goldman Sachs executive has blasted what he calls a "toxic" and "destructive" culture at the global investment bank that is increasingly focused on making money rather than representing the interests of clients in an open resignation letter, reported the Daily Mirror.

First civil service mutual suffers further setback – PCS

The government's first attempt to force some of its staff to form a 'mutual' organisation has received another setback and is now approaching a year behind schedule, reported the PCS website.


13 March

UK-wide protests against “shameful” anti-union tactics by human rights watchdog – UnionNews

Staff at the UK’s human rights watchdog joined lunchtime protests against plans to clamp down on trade unions in their workplaces, reported the UnionNews website.

NHS costs soar as GPs focus on health reforms – Guardian

Senior GPs are spending as little as one day a week seeing patients because they are too busy setting up new organisations as part of the coalition's health reforms, official NHS records reveal, reported the Guardian.


12 March

What the British government is doing to welfare – openDemocracy

In an extract from the book 'Public Service on the Brink', published on the openDemocracy website, which describes the denigration and undermining of public services and the public service ethos in the UK. PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka explained how the department has changed even more violently since his 21 years in the DHSS.

Government reveals details of ‘final’ offer on public sector pension reform – IFAonline

The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union claimed the government will continue to negotiate if unions refuse the latest pensions deal, reported the website IFAonline.


11 March

Figures dent hopes of private sector leading recovery – Independent

David Cameron’s promise of a “private sector-led” economic recovery was undermined with figures showing that public sector job losses are not being matched by new work in private firms, reported the Independent.

The consequences of the EU bank rescue – Red Pepper

Writer Hugo Radice outlined the implications of the European Central Banks' recent actions to support the European Union's banking sector for Red Pepper magazine.


10 March

Teachers threaten fresh strikes over pensions – Daily Telegraph

Teachers are threatening fresh strike action after Government talks on a new pensions deal ended without the agreement of major public sector unions, reported the Daily Telegraph.

A4e faces review of contracts on fraud claims – Financial Times

The Department for Work and Pensions has ordered an independent audit of all of its contracts with troubled welfare to work provider A4e warning it “would not hesitate to immediately terminate our commercial relationship” if it uncovered wrongdoing, reported the Financial Times.

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