PCS
Public and Commercial Services Union
Founded1998
Headquarters160 Falcon Road, London
Location
  • United Kingdom
Members
Increase 191,289 (2022)[1]
Key people
Fran Heathcote, General Secretary
John Moloney, Assistant General Secretary
Martin Cavanagh, Acting President
AffiliationsTUC, ICTU, STUC, NSSN, PSI, The European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU)
Websitewww.pcs.org.uk

The Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) is the eighth largest trade union in the United Kingdom.[2] Most of its members work in UK government departments and other public bodies.

History

The union was founded in 1998 by the merger of the Public Services, Tax and Commerce Union (which mostly represented the executive grades of the Civil Service) and the Civil and Public Services Association (mostly representing the clerical grades). The General Secretaries of the two unions, John Sheldon and Barry Reamsbottom respectively, became Joint General Secretaries of the new union. In 2000, Mark Serwotka was elected General Secretary[3] and held the position until his retirement on 31 January 2024: he was elected unopposed in 2005 (no other candidate received enough valid nominations from PCS branches); he was re-elected in 2009 for a five-year term, and in 2014 was re-elected for a further five years.[4]

In 2018, the union won £3 million in damages from the Department for Work and Pensions,[5] after a legal challenge against the withdrawal of the "check off" system of paying union subscriptions.

Fran Heathcote was elected as the union's first female General Secretary, defeating Marion Lloyd. She assumed the office on 1 February 2024.[6]

Membership and organisation

The union had 195,901 members at the end of 2015[7] and is the largest trade union representing civil servants in the UK.[8]

PCS is organised into groups that deal with different bargaining units such as Revenue and Customs, Work and Pensions and Law and Justice.

Two factions compete in elections to the National Executive Committee of the PCS, its governing body: the ruling Left Unity faction,[9] which stands candidates as part of the Democracy Alliance, and an opposing Independent Left faction.[10]

PCS Credit Union

PCS Credit Union Limited is a savings and loans co-operative established by the trade union for its members in 2011.[11] It is a member of the Association of British Credit Unions Limited,[12] authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the PRA. Ultimately, like the banks and building societies, members’ savings are protected against business failure by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.[13]

Affiliations

Organisations to which PCS is affiliated include Abortion Rights,[14] Amnesty International and the Cuba Solidarity Campaign.[15]

Strikes and protests involving PCS members

This section needs to be updated. Please help update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. (May 2023)
This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (January 2012)

2008

2010

PCS members on strike in 2010.

2011

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2019

2020

2021

Leadership

General Secretaries

1998: John Sheldon and Barry Reamsbottom
2000-2024: Mark Serwotka
2024: Fran Heathcote[40]

Assistant General Secretaries

2000: Hugh Lanning
2004: Chris Baugh and Hugh Lanning
2013: Chris Baugh[41]
2019: John Moloney[42]
2024: John Moloney[40]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Public and Commercial Services Union Form AR21 for year ended 31 December 2022" (PDF). GOV.UK. Retrieved 26 July 2023.
  2. ^ "About PCS". Public and Commercial Services Union Website. Archived from the original on 6 July 2008. Retrieved 18 February 2014.
  3. ^ Daniels, Gary; McIlroy, John, eds. (2009), "Trade Unions in a Neoliberal World", Routledge Research in Employment Relations Series, vol. 20, Taylor & Francis, p. 154, ISBN 9780415426633
  4. ^ "Mark Serwotka re-elected". PCS News centre. 17 December 2009. Archived from the original on 14 January 2010. Retrieved 31 March 2011.
  5. ^ "PCS union wins £3m payout from DWP in check-off victory | Civil Service World". www.civilserviceworld.com. Archived from the original on 17 October 2018. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
  6. ^ https://www.civilserviceworld.com/news/article/civil-services-biggest-union-names-first-female-general-secretary
  7. ^ "Public and Commercial Services Union: 2015 Annual Return" (PDF). Gov.UK. Archived (PDF) from the original on 20 January 2023. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  8. ^ "PCS union renews pension strike threat". BBC. 11 January 2012. Archived from the original on 19 March 2012. Retrieved 9 September 2012.
  9. ^ "leftunity.org.uk". www.leftunity.org.uk. Archived from the original on 25 April 2018. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  10. ^ "PCS Independent Left". PCS Independent Left. Archived from the original on 12 November 2019. Retrieved 2 April 2020.
  11. ^ PCS Credit Union Archived 6 February 2015 at the Wayback Machine Public and Commercial Services Union (retrieved 21 February 2015)
  12. ^ Credit unions in membership of ABCUL Archived 3 January 2015 at the Wayback Machine Association of British Credit Unions (retrieved 1 November 2014)
  13. ^ Credit Union Guide Archived 24 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine Financial Services Compensation Scheme (retrieved 2 April 2015)
  14. ^ "Abortion Rights: PCS Public-Sector Workers Reject Demands To End Affiliation To Progressive Rights Group". 23 May 2014. Archived from the original on 15 December 2014. Retrieved 15 December 2014.
  15. ^ Mark, Serwoka (2014). "PCS Annual financial report". PCS. Archived from the original on 19 June 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2014.
  16. ^ "Museum staff go on strike in pay dispute". Reuters. 13 June 2008. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  17. ^ "270,000 civil servants join 48-hour strike". BBC. 8 March 2010. Archived from the original on 16 March 2017. Retrieved 8 March 2010.
  18. ^ McSmith, Andy; Morris, Nigel (16 June 2011). "Britain walks out: UK braced for biggest wave of strikes since the 1980s". The Independent. Archived from the original on 17 June 2011. Retrieved 15 June 2011.
  19. ^ "Metropolitan Police civilian Staff on New Year's Eve strike". BBC News. 31 December 2013. Archived from the original on 14 February 2014. Retrieved 6 February 2014.
  20. ^ "Budget Day strike for civil servants". 6 March 2013. Archived from the original on 19 June 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  21. ^ Waddington, Marc (29 May 2013). "Liverpool museum staff to walk out in Government cuts protest". liverpoolecho. Archived from the original on 28 January 2021. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  22. ^ "PCS union to join 10 July public sector strike". BBC News. 1 July 2014. Archived from the original on 5 August 2021. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  23. ^ Gayle, Damien (11 August 2015). "National Gallery staff strike shuts down most exhibitions". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 29 March 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  24. ^ "Deal ends National Gallery strike". 2 October 2015. Archived from the original on 29 March 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  25. ^ "Museum staff back strikes over pay". 22 July 2015. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  26. ^ "Queen's staff in industrial action". 15 April 2015. Archived from the original on 2 December 2016. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  27. ^ "National Museum hit by strike action". 27 December 2015. Archived from the original on 7 May 2017. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  28. ^ "National museum pay dispute resolved". 15 April 2016. Archived from the original on 16 April 2016. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  29. ^ Lawrence, Felicity (28 July 2016). "HMRC cleaners striking over pay: 'They've treated us appallingly'". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 7 August 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  30. ^ "DVSA workers set to strike in dispute over new driving test". Public and Commercial Services Union. Archived from the original on 1 December 2017. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  31. ^ "Driving examiners to strike on test day". BBC News. 15 November 2017. Archived from the original on 30 September 2018. Retrieved 18 November 2017.
  32. ^ "Why the Beefeaters at the Tower of London are on strike". The Independent. 7 January 2019. Archived from the original on 29 March 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  33. ^ Davies, Caroline (21 December 2018). "Beefeaters at Tower of London strike for first time in 55 years". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 29 March 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  34. ^ Syal, Rajeev (17 December 2018). "BEIS faces strike over low pay for outsourced service workers". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 3 April 2019. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  35. ^ correspondent, Owen Bowcott Legal affairs (10 January 2019). "Ministry of Justice workers to stage two-day strike over pay". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Archived from the original on 23 October 2020. Retrieved 13 September 2020.
  36. ^ "'Xavier Bray, end low pay!': Wallace Collection staff fight for London Living Wage". www.theartnewspaper.com. 5 December 2019. Archived from the original on 5 August 2021. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  37. ^ "Tate strike suspended as 'improved offer' is finalised". Museums Association. 7 October 2020. Archived from the original on 5 August 2021. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  38. ^ Speare-Cole, Rebecca (1 August 2020). "Crowds protest against National Theatre and Southbank Centre job cuts". www.standard.co.uk. Archived from the original on 5 August 2021. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  39. ^ Lewis, Ffion (2 June 2021). "Hundreds of DVLA workers on strike due to Covid safety fears". WalesOnline. Retrieved 5 August 2021.
  40. ^ a b "Fran Heathcote elected to be first woman PCS general secretary | Public and Commercial Services Union". www.pcs.org.uk. 10 November 2022. Retrieved 14 December 2023.
  41. ^ "PCS setback for the left". Socialism Today. June 2019. Archived from the original on 6 October 2022. Retrieved 6 October 2022.
  42. ^ "How we are run". PCS. Archived from the original on 6 October 2022. Retrieved 6 October 2022.