What We Do

PCS is a democratic, fighting union. This means that, as an organisation, we act for and represent our members in a variety of important ways.

Organising

All of the work we do as a branch is underpinned by organising.

This doesn’t simply mean getting as many staff as possible to be members of the union. It means ensuring that our members are kept informed and involved in all of the work we do, with the ideal we are striving for being that members lead the union from the ground. Our ability to get anything done comes down to the strength of our membership first and foremost, and as a branch our aim is to continually build on that strength.

Read the organising strategy agreed by the Branch Executive Committee here.

Campaigning

We aim to improve our working lives. We campaign for decent pay and conditions and for fair pensions for all.

PCS is independent from any political party which allows us to stand up for our members’ interests no matter what party is in government. We have strong parliamentary groups in the European parliament, the Northern Ireland assembly, the Scottish parliament, the Welsh assembly and in Westminster. We work together with other unions in the UK and Europe to campaign for better public services and a fair deal for public servants.

Find out more about how PCS is fighting for you on our campaigns page.

Personal case work and legal support

PCS provides a range of support, legal and personal, to all its members. In some cases, we can extend that support to members of your family and also to areas outside of the workplace.

There are five main areas of legal and personal case support we offer: Employment advice and support, personal injury claims, general legal advice, free will service, and conveyancing.

Find out more about the support we can offer you here.

Health and safety

Health and safety at work is important.

Thousands of people are injured, or even killed, through work each year. Even more find that work has damaged their health in any of a variety of ways – upper limb disorders, back injuries or mental health difficulties caused through stress. And it is not only factory or construction workers – many of these injuries and illnesses occur in office environments.

The law allows recognised unions to appoint health and safety representatives, and affords these reps the legal right to time away from the workplace to undergo training and to time away from their work duties to carry out their safety rep functions. There are also legal requirements on employers to consult with their workers through their union reps and to take their input into account in making decisions that could affect health and safety at work.

PCS invests heavily in ensuring that we have a suitable network of safety reps, who have ready access to training, guidance and support.

But the key message to all workers has to be: don’t become part of the injury or ill health statistics – talk to your local safety rep about any concerns that you have. Help them to work with your employer to provide a safe and health environment for everyone to work in.

The national PCS website has an extensive selection of health and safety resources here.

Equalities

Equality is at the heart of everything we do. In the way we organise ourselves and campaign we always strive to ensure we are representing all of our members.

Our branch equality officer, women’s officer and young members’ officer work with members to promote equality and tackle discrimination in the workplace, society and the wider world.

We are committed to ensuring those members in groups currently under-represented in our union’s structures are encouraged and supported to play a full and active role.

Find out more about the role of the women’s officer and the branch women’s advisory committee (BWAC) here.

PCS runs four national forums for women, black, disabled, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender members, which meet regularly to share information and ideas, and advise the national executive on policy. The PCS national website has more information on them here.

Young members

The PCS Young Members Network is an equality network within the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union and any PCS member aged 27 years under and can join. Our role is to give young members a voice in the union and to campaign on issues that affect them.

Democratically run by young members, for young members, our aim is to recruit, organise and develop young people to become the next layer of union activists . To achieve this, the network hosts meetings, builds demonstrations and campaigns, organises specific young member training events and, of course, organises socials and go to festivals in the mean time! Not just limited to the confines of the PCS, we work with other union young members through the TUC Young Workers Forum and campaign groups like the Youth Fight for Jobs Campaign to do joint campaign work and unite struggles to cover all walks of life.

The network is run by the National Young Members Committee (NYMC) which is made up of a chair, vice chair, equality’s officer and 10 convenors each representing their region. All officers are elected by young members at our main annual conference, the Young Members Forum, which takes place over the summer and the convenors are elected at regional YM AGMs.

If you want to find out more, visit the PCS Young Members Network website.

Union learning

The idea of a ‘learning representative’ was first promoted by the TUC in the late 1990s. Research shows that learning reps can have a significant impact in helping to create a culture of workplace learning.

Learning can help build the union’s organisation – it can encourage members to take on a role in the union.

Find out more about what our branch Learning Reps do here.