Letter: PCS Cumbernauld response to tax office jobs threat

Written by John Miller.
Published at 19:30 on 24 August 2014.
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Dear Sir,

On behalf of the PCS Cumbernauld Revenue and Customs Branch Committee I have been asked to respond to the demonstration of the three New Labour establishment politicians on our members’ jobs.

It is unacceptable for Gregg McClymont, Jim Murphy and Anas Sarwar to make statements which seek to distort facts and are tantamount to deceiving the public and the employees of the local tax office on job security as a result of a Yes vote in the forthcoming independence referendum.

They are well aware that it was their party which initiated the process of job cuts, attacks on pensions and pay and the extension of privatisation which directly affects our members in Cumbernauld. The continuation of the UK cuts means that 43 of our members face redundancy and an uncertain future. The planned privatisation of jobs in the Cumbernauld site alongside the 20,000 job cuts budgeted for by HMRC does not envisage a better future for our members or for the public.

Gregg McClymont as our local MP was asked as part of the PCS` Our Scotland, Our Services Our Future `campaign to provide a response to 20 questions. The PCS Cumbernauld Revenue and Customs Branch still awaits a written reply on issues covering ; end austerity cuts; public services not private profit; progressive taxation tackling avoidance and evasion; welfare decency; oppose public sector pension reforms; no compulsory redundancies, relocations or transfers; stop the pay freeze and repeal all anti-trade union laws amongst others.

Over the past ten years thousands of PCS members’ jobs in Scotland have been lost due to office closures carried out by the UK government. Every local enquiry office serving the public is closing as we speak adding to the shutting of offices and job cuts from Inverness to Dumfries. PCS believes there is an alternative even if the `main` Westminster based political parties don`t and accept the UK bosses agenda.   

PCS in conducting `it informs - you decide` referendum sessions acknowledges the Scottish Governments commitment to retain all current civil servants in the event of a yes vote. Why can Labour make no such guarantee in defence of the UK. Why can Labour not say in the event of a 2015 general election victory that it will reopen all the tax offices that have closed; that it will bring back to Cumbernauld the banking processing equipment moved to England and the jobs that went with it.

At our public meeting in the New Town Hall on the question of the Royal Mail Gregg McClymont stated that if in office Labour would not bring it back into public ownership despite over 70% of the electorate wishing it to be. They are servants to the neo-liberal market orientated elite that dictates economic prosperity for the few and job insecurity for the many. 

The threat to jobs in the tax office in Cumbernauld does not come from a yes vote in the forthcoming referendum it comes from an acceptance of the status quo. The belief that there is nothing that can change, and that we must accept our lot. The trade union movement stands in complete opposition to that mind set and acceptance of those conservative values that Labour now represents.

Yours etc.,
John Miller, PCS Cumbernauld Revenue & Customs Office Secretary.
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