PCS negotiators have with met the Cabinet Office for ongoing talks on the coronavirus outbreak.
The majority of the discussion was about civil service-wide guidance that the Cabinet Office is updating. We have been pressing for this to be more directive on departments so that there are common standards across the civil service. In particular at yesterday’s meeting we secured common guidance on the impact of staff of school closures, which will be issued shortly.
We also used the meeting to raise a number of specific issues from members:
- Concerns by driving examiners about continuing with testing
- Calling for consistent advice about homeworking with particular reference to concerns raised in the DWP
- Minimising the numbers of essential workers required during a lockdown
- Worries from outsourced workers on government contracts that their employers are not maintaining similar standards to the civil service
- A moratorium on all civil service staff cuts and office closures, with particular reference to the office closure programme in HMRC
- A moratorium on transfers on government contracts with particular reference to security staff and cleaners in the MOJ
- That union reps and health and safety reps are given additional time to support members.
The management side has agreed to two further meetings next week. We will keep members updated about the outcome of these discussions.
It is a very important time to be a union member and together we are stronger. Ask your colleagues to join PCS online.
If you have questions about the impact of coronavirus on you, visit your PCS employer group page on this website in the first instance. This should be updated regularly with advice and information about the current situation.