I recently attended one of PCS’ briefings for reps, which are being held to help build for N30. I bumped into an old mate of mine who used to work for the Learning and Skills Council in Stratford. He informed me that, due to the centralisation of their work and the closure of local offices, he’d recently moved into the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills HQ in 1 Victoria St., Whitehall. I asked him how J30 went and he said there was great support from the members. He said that whilst he was on the picket line, who should approach, but none other than Frances O’Grady, deputy General Secretary of the TUC. She helpfully explained that she had a very important meeting with ministers and would therefore need to cross the picket line. When one of the pickets phoned PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka, Frances kindly agreed to take the call. Ten minutes later she agreed not to cross the PCS picket line.
There is nothing like solidarity, comrades – and that was nothing like solidarity!