The PCS National Ballot runs from the 8th February until the 4th March 2013.
The ballot papers for the latest strike proposals by the PCS leadership will start arriving on your doormat over the next few days.
4themembers believes in a membership led union, where members endorse our unions industrial strategy. It is after all, our union's members that will be taking industrial action and losing pay.
Industrial action must always be apart of any unions arsenal, but should only be used as a last resort when all else fails and in defence or promotion of our members interests.
The question we would ask is whether this ballot is being run for our members or in support of a politically driven agenda.
The leadership of PCS is dominated by the Socialist Party which has been pushing for a General Strike for months.
The ballot asks you to take industrial action over three issues; Pensions, Pay and Conditions of Service.
These are all critically important issues that effect us all in our working lives; however, 4themembers believes the dispute is flawed both industrially and politically from the start.
Pensions: PCS won the argument and even the court cases before the government changed the primary legislation, effectively removing our members legal argument. There is little chance of overturning the imposed and detrimental changes and the argument now is around the contribution rate.
Pay: The demand for 5% or £1,200 pay increase in support of financially hard pressed members is right but unrealistic; with people losing their jobs left, right and centre the Government are not going to move on pay whether we like it or not and industrial action will simply lose members money they cannot afford.
Conditions of Service: The proposed changes are a disgrace and our union should be fighting against the introduction of a two tier workforce; however, they will not in the main affect any current members of staff. The leadership of PCS cannot in all seriousness believe that current members will strike about something that will not effect them.
The demands made by the union will not be agreed by this despicable government, especially when they include demands framed to ensure a settlement cannot be achieved and instead, drive our union towards industrial action.
We are not advocating rolling over, PCS must protect and promote its members interests. The issue that our members have to consider is whether this action is driven by that need or by a separate political agenda. If members believe this call to action is in their interests there will be an overwhelming majority voting for it. If members believe that the action is politically driven as we do, it risks failure.
What we are advocating is that members need to vote, ensuring a majority vote not a minority one decides the industrial strategy of PCS.
Exercise your democratic right and VOTE in the ballot.