Government workers to strike over pay

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A PICKET line will set up outside Portsmouth’s Naval Base as civil servants stage a half-day strike in a dispute over pay, pensions and working conditions.

Scores of civil servants from the Public and Commercial Services Union are expected to join the walk-out from 1pm on Friday.

The strike will include workers from the Ministry of Defence, driving test centres, courts, job centres, coastguard offices and border patrols at ports and airports.

A protest will be held outside the Naval Base at lunchtime on Friday. A separate walk-out is being held by HMRC workers on Monday morning until 1pm.

Nationally, up to 250,000 PCS members are expected to take part.

Andy Thomas, PCS regional secretary for the south east, said: ‘It’s likely, we believe, there will be significant disruption through a range of services with people walking out of their offices for half a day.

‘As ever the disruption is aimed at putting pressure on the government to come back round the negotiating table.’

A spokesman for HM Coastguard said the service would not be affected and contingency plans were in place.