Large and lively picket lines have marked the start of a 2-day strike by Public and Commercial Services (PCS) Union members at Walsall and Wolverhampton Universal Credit service centres taking action today (May 28) and tomorrow.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “Our members who work to support some of the most vulnerable members of society will not put up with DWP management ignoring their real concerns over staffing and under investment.
“This strike will be part of sustained campaign of action which could spread to other parts of Universal Credit”.
He added, “Our members care passionately about the work they do and the people they support. However, they cannot stand idly by while ministers make the job of supporting claimants impossible.”
We will not be complicit
Serwotka’s comments echo GMLC’s principles on Universal Credit. We fight alongside claimants navigating the benefits system. We know that the consequences of an ineffective welfare system can be devastating, and Universal Credit was destined to worsen the situation. In 2017, when a local job centre asked for our assistance in the Universal Credit roll-out, we refused, and said: “If Universal Credit is so convoluted and ineffective that voluntary sector organisations are relied upon, then it should not be implemented at all”.
“We will not be complicit in a scheme which results in further adversity and punishment for vulnerable people“.
We have consistently called on others to take a stand against Universal Credit, which is fundamentally against the best interests of those we are supposed to be supporting. We support the strikers for protesting a failed Universal Credit system.
Read more about our fight for a supportive social security system in our manifesto here.