Unless the government resolves the dispute over workers pay then there will be “even bigger strikes” which will continue “right through the summer.”
A Union leader has accused the government of being “missing in action” and Minister must be made aware that the “amount of people taking or voting for action is going to grow.”
Speaking to Sky News Mark Serwotka, general secretary of The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) Union said, “It’s not feasible that they can sit back with this unprecedented amount of industrial action growing because it’s half a million today.
“So the amount of people taking or voting for action is going to grow – and I don’t believe the government will find it can get away with putting its head down while all this disruption takes place.
“And I think they’ll be forced to take a much more realistic attitude.
“But if they refuse, we are planning for our campaign to continue right through the summer with both long-term, sustained, targeted strikes – but also mass actions like today.
“And I think we will see if there is another one, it will be even bigger than the one today.”
General secretary of the TUC Paul Nowak told the broadcaster that the Prime Minister and the Chancellor are “missing in action” as more than half a million workers have joined the picket lines on Wednesday. And the government are “playing a little bit fast and loose with the British public.”
Nowak told Kay Burley, “The government needs to sit down. As I say, the prime minister and the chancellor come to the table, find some new money.”
Nowak added, “I think last time I was on your programme two or three weeks ago, I said that we wanted to sit down with the chancellor and the PM to talk about what could be done in terms of fair pay settlements, new money on the table.
“We haven’t had a response.
“I’m an optimist and I’m a negotiator, and I hope that the government will listen and will come to the table.”
A Number 10 spokesperson said, “We regret the decision taken by multiple unions to strike as we greatly value the work of their members.
“We want open and honest dialogue about pay.
“Secretaries of state continue to have constructive meetings with their union counterparts, representing a positive step towards increasing dialogue and finding common ground.
“We also want to discuss non-pay concerns including conditions and workload.
“We cannot chase the tail of inflation. Increasing all public sector pay would cost £28bn – equivalent to £1,000 for every household.”