Nearly 100,000 civil servants to strike in February amid wave of industrial action

Civil service workers on strike outside the Houses of Parliament.
Members of the PCS union from 124 government departments will take part in the strike. Credit: PA

Around 100,000 civil servants are to stage a 24-hour strike next month in an escalation of a bitter dispute over jobs, pay and conditions.

The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union announced that its members in 124 government departments and other bodies will walk out on February 1.

According to the union, it will be the largest civil service strike for years and signals a "significant escalation" of industrial action after a month of strikes by its members, including Border Force staff.

The stoppage will coincide with the TUC’s "protect the right to strike" day, which was announced in reaction to the government’s controversial legislation on minimum service levels during industrial action.

A further 33,000 PCS members working in five more departments, including HM Revenue & Customs, are next week re-balloting to join the union’s national strike action.

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: "During the last month, when thousands of PCS members across a range of departments took sustained industrial action, the government said it had no money.

"But it managed to find millions of pounds to spend on managers and military personnel in a failed attempt to cover the vital work our members do.

"We warned the government our dispute would escalate if they did not listen - and we’re as good as our word."

There has been a wave of industrial action across the UK in a range of sectors, including healthcare and transport, as pay fails to keep pace with soaring inflation.

On Wednesday, up to 25,000 ambulance workers across England and Wales went on strike in a dispute with the government over pay. Paramedics, call handlers, drivers and technicians from the Unison and GMB unions are taking part in staggered strikes across a 24-hour period.

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