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Job Centre security guards begin week-long strike over pay

01 Jul 2024 2 minute read
Photo by Helen Cobain, licensed under CC BY 2.0

Job Centre security guards begin a week-long strike on Monday in an escalation of a pay dispute.

The GMB said around 1,500 of its members employed by G4S will walk out.

The union said 90% of the guards are paid just the minimum wage.

GMB national officer Eamon O’Hearn said: “If the Department for Work and Pensions and G4S want to end this dispute, make sure these guards are paid enough to live on.

“G4S has been handed millions by the Government, yet our members can barely afford to feed their families.

“The work they do is hard; they are attacked with alarming regularity just for doing their job.

“The least they expect is to be paid a proper wage.”

Contingency plans

A G4S spokesman said: “Our dedicated security colleagues do a great job, sometimes in difficult circumstances.

“We urge the GMB to present our offer to our employees, which is both above minimum wage and inflation. We are keen to bring this dispute to an amicable conclusion.

“Our contingency plans, agreed in partnership with DWP, have proved highly effective in maintaining a full service, and we continue to adapt them to ensure the safety of DWP locations, employees and the service users.”

The strike will continue until Saturday.

G4S said its pay offer was for a 6.5% rise from April 2023, and an average 9.3% increase from December 2023 to April 2024.

A spokesperson said: “This is our best and last offer put to the GMB in April 2024 and the union has refused to put it to a vote by its members.

“Once agreed all backdated pay would be paid to our employees.

“Since 2022, G4S has made 12 pay offers and the GMB has taken only two to a ballot.”

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