Members of the Public and Commercial Services union based in Bristol and Carlisle are taking action
Civil servants working for the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) begin their second week of strike action on Monday.
Members of the Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) based in Bristol and Carlisle are taking action as part of a long-running dispute over pay, jobs, pensions and conditions in the civil service.
The union said strikes at APHA are believed to have already caused delays for imports and exports, including caviar.
A PCS spokesperson said: “Ministers should be ashamed that while some members of society are bemoaning a lack of caviar on their dinner plates, 40,000 of their own workforce are using food banks.
“Our members should not be forced to choose between heating and eating – they should be paid a fair wage for the important work they do.”
The striking APHA workers join PCS members at the DVLA in Swansea and Birmingham who are also beginning a second week of action on Monday and Department for Work and Pensions staff in Liverpool who are part-way through a 20-day strike.
The strikes follow this weekend’s action by Border Force officials in Dover, Calais, Coquelles and Dunkirk that caused six-hour delays for travellers.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “While we sympathise with travellers experiencing delays, the blame lies squarely with the Government.
“Rishi Sunak has had months to resolve this dispute but refuses to meet us.
“He can end the strikes tomorrow if he puts some money on the table.
“Until he does, our strikes will continue because it is unacceptable that hard-working civil servants are being told to accept just a 2% pay rise during a cost-of-living crisis when inflation is at 10%.”
Workers at the Land Registry begin a five-day strike from February 27 while 100,000 PCS members will strike on Budget day, March 15.
An APHA spokesperson said: “We have plans in place to minimise any impact to our business-critical work during this industrial action. Whilst there will be disruption we have robust plans in place to ensure our ability to respond to reports of disease is maintained.
“We are working across government with industry and external partners to ensure we continue to operate our core critical business during this period of industrial action and ensure impact to industry is minimised.”
Published: 20/02/2023 by Radio NewsHub