the Government and civil service unions agreed a compensation scheme
which set out the exit terms provided to civil servants whose contracts
are terminated by their Department. But, over 20 years on, the Prime
Minister announced in March this year his intention to fundamentally
‘reform’ these severance schemes to reduce the cost to the tax payer.
The government see the present terms as ‘inflexible and expensive.’
this because during the last 3 years over 70,000 civil servants have
been made redundant at a cost of over £1.4 billion pounds? Remember
this is just the tip of an iceberg with the government still planning
to reduce the civil service staffing levels by a further 100,000!!
the new proposals there will be a standard approach across all civil
service departments. There will be no provision for early retirement
and no access to a pension before 60 years of age. In fact those who
agree to take a voluntary package over 60 will be paid less in the
termination payment, to take into account the fact that the pension is
funded by the tax payer.
The payments in the new scheme are linked
to the length of service but will only pay up to a maximum of 2 years
salary, which will penalise anyone with over14 ½ years service, which
is not uncommon in the civil service. This would represent a huge
financial loss amounting to tens of thousands of pounds each for the
vast majority of existing staff, particularly those facing redundancy,
whether that be compulsory or voluntary.
The proposals are an outrageous attempt to cut people’s jobs on the cheap when many are worried about job security.
amount to a cut in accrued and contractual rights to decent redundancy
compensation at a time when we can clearly see that tens of thousands
of jobs are at risk over the next few years.
This is a further
attack on a civil service workforce which have seen a series of derisory
pay offers over the last few years meaning many have continuously had
below inflation payments. It is time that we fought back and said
enough is enough! The Public and Commercial Service Union (PCS) and
other civil service unions should stand together and ballot members on
strike action across the whole service. No one department should
be left to fight this appalling attack on the civil service workforce,
it is important we stand together.