The PCS delegation is speaking to a number of motions at congress - read the final agenda for the full list of business - and proposing 2:
Public sector pay
Congress notes that during and following the general election the issue of the public sector pay cap has been at the forefront of political debate. A number of Conservative MPs and government ministers have called for the pay cap to be lifted and the Labour Party sought to amend the Queen’s speech to end the cap. The pay cap has already had a devastating effect on the value of the incomes of our members. PCS research shows the effect of that policy will mean that average civil service pay will have fallen in value by over 20% by 2020.
Congress recognises that all public sector workers deserve a pay rise, and that a united public sector wide campaign is the best way to pressurise the chancellor to end the pay gap. Congress welcomes the TUC public sector pay campaign, however Congress also recognises that we need to step up our united campaign in advance of the autumn budget.
Congress calls on the General Council to: i. seek a meeting with the chancellor to present a public sector wide demand to end the pay cap and provide adequate funding for above inflation pay rises ii. organise a lobby of parliament, a large scale public meeting in Westminster, and a national demonstration in support of our demands iii. develop a coordinated strategy of opposition to the pay gap within the public sector including the sharing and coordinating of bargaining timetables and pay demands, campaign activities, tactics, ballots and industrial action.
Congress condemns successive UK governments’ devastating welfare policies, including cuts in the value of benefits and increases to the pension age. Work capability assessments and sanctions are throwing thousands on to the mercy of foodbanks.
Congress rejects the government’s plans to close dozens of jobcentres and support offices damaging services to local communities.
Congress condemns cuts built into Universal Credit, including cuts to tax credits and the imposition of the Minimum Income Floor on self-employed workers, as an attack on the poorest workers, families and young people in Britain.
Congress believes that social security for every citizen is a fundamental human right and the that central delivery, not postcode lottery, is an essential part of combating inequality.
Congress notes that, while the idea of a Universal Basic Income to replace the current benefit system has merit, UBI is some forms is also advocated by right-wing politicians aiming to undermine the welfare state. Congress believes UBI should not be a substitute for decent paid work and employment rights.
Congress call on the General Council to:
- Demand an end to jobcentre closures, the sanctions regime and work capability assessment, and to argue for increases in the value of benefits, and for more resources
- Work with campaigning organisations to launch a campaign for a welfare system that meets the needs of our communities and includes the principles of ‘social insurance’ and social security as a right
- Examine UBI policy options, including adequate levels and funding, drawing on the expertise and knowledge of workers in the field of social security.