Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Plaid AM calls for PCS picket line to be respected

Plaid Cymru AM Leanne Wood has urged fellow Welsh Assembly staff and Assembly Members not to cross the Public and Commercial Services union picket line planned for next week.

The South Wales Central AM, who chairs the PCS cross party group in the Assembly, also urged the First Minister to make strong representations to the Westminster Government in order to avert strike action by the PCS Union next week.

Up to 20,000 Welsh civil and public servants are expected to withdraw their labour on Monday and Tuesday in defence of their redundancy rights. The PCS Union is calling for the UK Government to return to the negotiating table and involve ACAS in an attempt to agree a resolution to the dispute.

In questions to the First Minister today, Leanne Wood AM said:
“When I put a question to you on the PCS strike last month you correctly stated that it was not a devolved matter. 
“Now in the light of the fact that staff employed by the Welsh Assembly Government and the Assembly Commission are affected by this dispute and that plenary next Tuesday could end up being cancelled, this is an issue that calls for strong representation from Wales. 
“What measures or representations can you make to urge the Westminster Government to involve ACAS and to get around the negotiating table with the union in order to agree an acceptable resolution to this impasse?” 

Leanne has also called for next Tuesday’s plenary session to be cancelled in solidarity and support with hard working staff who she said provide an “excellent service” to AMs and the Government. She has urged AMs to join PCS members on the picket lines and rallies.

Leanne is also submitting a draft statement of opinion, asking the Assembly to recognise the essential work done by civil servants, expressing deep concern at proposed changes to the Civil Service Compensation Scheme and support for PCS union members taking industrial action in defence of their redundancy rights.

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