National Day of Protest to support Eastern Avenue jobcentre campaign

10 Nov 2017

PCS members across the UK have been staging photo protests to show their support for the members in Sheffield who were today taking their 41st day of strike action.

Today (10 November) hundreds of members in dozens of branches across the UK have taken part in a day of protest organised to raise the profile of the campaign to prevent the closure of the Eastern Avenue jobcentre in Sheffield.

These include: Birmingham DWP, Equality and Human Rights Commission Scotland, National Gallery, HMRC Leicester, DWP Long Benton, Defra NW and Cumbria branch in Carlisle, HM Land Registry in Durham and Birkenhead, Royal Parks branch in London, BEIS London and South East , HMRC Stockton and North Yorkshire, DWP Devon and the Scottish Government West and Central Scotland branch.

Photos of the members, holding “Don’t close Eastern Avenue jobcentre” cards can be seen on the PCS Facebook page and on Flickr.

Morale-boosting

Eastern Avenue PCS rep Jamie Godfrey said that despite the bitterly cold morning on the picket line today, the support shown by members across the UK has been heart-warming and a real boost to those on strike.

This week has been the first week of picket lines since the jobcentre closed to the public last Friday (3 November).

Jamie said “It is such a terrible waste to see the site fall silent when staff have delivered so much good work there for the surrounding community over the years. Lives have been changed for the better on this site.

“This week the picketers lent a hand cleaning up the mess left by the closure and have supported a number of claimants who had clearly not been informed about the closure.

“The response from the claimants was the same in all cases. The news of the closure was met with shock and disgust as they were informed that the help they have relied on for so long had been snatched away.

“I fear the impact of the closure will soon start to hit home hard for the local residents as they are met with closed doors rather than supportive staff.”

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