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IPS Embargoes Announcement

On Saturday 12th March IPS announced a series of proposals affecting ION and Regional Offices.  Below is a Newsbrief published by the IPS GEC the previous day.

Further to our previous circular we have received IPS managements proposals for the future of the Interview Office Network (ION) and on the future of customer facing work but have been told that the announcement is embargoed until tomorrow, 12 March.

This means in practice that we cannot fully brief members today since PCS reps may be threatened with disciplinary action if they release this information.

This is a disgrace and shows how IPS approaches consultation on these matters. We can assure members that PCS representatives will be present at tomorrows meetings and we will be issuing further briefings to members by Monday at the latest.

IPS managements approach


PCSs position remains the same. There is no justification for these cuts. We anticipate that IPS management will attempt to close offices within ION. That they will attempt to down grade the work of interview officers and force people to work in flexible teams.

The core issue is that the cuts IPS management are proposing are based upon their plans for the future, which are not finalised. PCS has been arguing that since the organisation has no clear vision of the future, and that many issues are yet to be resolved, the consultation exercise should be extended. We have argued that it is irrational to cut jobs in the ION when much of the so called justification for the cuts is and will be subject to further consultation and negotiation.

Instead, IPS management have elected to release the information about the future structure of the Customer Service Network and the future of jobs in ION at the last minute with no proper consultation.

At recent meetings we have urged IPS management to hold off these announcements until we have had time to discuss what was sent to the Minister, but IPS management have refused. We are still awaiting key documents such as a full and thorough Equality Impact Assessment on the proposed closures.

In short, PCS believes that IPS is rushing ahead with a cuts agenda with little or no concern for the staff involved. The impact on the lives of those affected will be huge. IPS should reverse this decision and properly negotiate with PCS about the future of the organisation.

Worst of all, IPS have been completely unclear about the level and type of support they will offer to people at this time. We would expect IPS to develop support packages to all staff regardless of how they are affected. PCS will be giving our full support to members no matter where they work or how they are affected.

PCS approach


We will be attending the briefings tomorrow and we will be listening to members concerns. We also will be fully briefing all members about this announcement. Our inability to do so today is a result of IPS managements aggressive and dishonest tactics.

By their works shall you know them! If IPS were confident about their proposals they would have discussed them properly with PCS prior to any announcement as part of the consultation exercise. Instead they have elected to brief PCS at the last moment to ensure that we cannot communicate properly with our members.

However, we will listen to our members. PCS representatives will be present at the meetings tomorrow and we will be fully briefing all members on Monday on the basis of the IPS announcement and those meetings.

Get active

Across the organisation and across the Home Office we are facing massive threats of job losses, attacks on our pay, terms and conditions. It is essential that we unite to protect ourselves.

 PCS will continue to campaign against these attacks in the coming weeks and months. ION members are a vital part of IPS. ION members deliver a first class public service. There is no justification for this attack on members in the ION. In addition members may face down grading and an increase in their workloads as a result of these cuts. Members in the Newport Office are also potentially facing job losses.

You can make a difference by joining the campaign to protect our jobs and the service we provide.

Together, united we can win.

Categories: Restructuring
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