Saturday, 6 December 2014

What do we pay subscriptions to PCS for?

The PCS National Executive Committee has finally announced that it has "authorised" the sale of the unions headquarters building in Falcon Road.  The PCS website reports:

The NEC authorised the sale of the union’s Clapham Junction building and relocation of London-based staff if a suitable deal can be reached. Substantial bids for the building have been received. Realising a large sum of this order would provide us with a reserve to deal with any financial problems in the short term and would form a platform on which we will go forward in the medium term to build the union and grow into new areas. There would be full consultation with the PCS staff union.

The unions biggest financial asset is to go, without any consultation at the behest of the very people who have got the union into a mess in the first place.

But the problem doesn't end there.

At the bottom of the NEC report is this little nugget of information:

In July and September the NEC had considered the implementation of an annual delegate conference motion on discussions with Unite on joining forces. The motion established a policy to continue talks in the first instance based on attempting to secure certain demands in the motion. The general secretary reported to the NEC that he had written to Len McCluskey, GS of Unite, outlining the PCS policy and he had met with Len in November. Mark will update the NEC on any developments at the next meeting in January.

So despite selling off the unions assets, there may still be no independent civil service trade union. Yes there was some lee-way for the PCS to continue negatiations but most people thought it had been kicked into the long grass following Len Mcluskey's outburst at Unite conference.

The Morning Star reported back in July:

UNITE general secretary Len McCluskey poured cold water on plans yesterday to build a super-union with civil servants’ union PCS.

Union leaders have been in talks about PCS joining Unite — in plans that Mr McCluskey explained would be a transfer of undertakings rather than a merger.

But he revealed: “There’ll be no further progress with PCS going into the future.”

Hinting at the reasons for the breakdown, he told delegates “our rules don’t change, our structures don’t change” in any transfer of undertakings.

His comment comes after PCS members insisted they would not throw their lot in with Unite if their subs contributed to Labour Party coffers.

A motion passed at PCS conference in May made a separate political fund for civil servants within Unite.

Given the pressing need for a Labour victory to not only slow down the cuts, but end the continued attacks on trade union rights, the sectarian position of the activist caste in PCS who want to stand candidates against Labour in the general election is very much contrary to Unites position.

Mark Serwotka, the Socialist Party and their far-left allies will only help the Tories with their nonsensical plans.

All this begs the question what on earth are we paying subscriptions for as PCS members.

Yes "check off" is under threat (thanks in part to Serwotka's bloody minded behaviour) and "membership decline (which includes the departure of members in SOCA and very soon the HMRC, thanks to..guess who), one has to ask why the unions finances are in such a mess.

We have previously been assured more than once that "all is fine".  Yet PCS is clearly in serious trouble and if the leadership get their way won't even exist any more.

Perhaps Mr Baugh would like to clarify the unions finances for us. There's a comments box underneath this article.

I notice that on the unions Face Book page one member has commented more than once about being "bored" by the direct debit campaign.

Some of us might go further than "being bored".

Lots of members are holding off filling in direct debit forms.

All the evidence points to PCS having an uncertain future, if indeed it has one at all.

Other options for members are or will be available.

PCS is the sixth largest union in the country. How the hell has it got to this point.

What exactly went wrong with the unions spending?

Open the Books!

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