Say You Won't Let Go James Arthur
Transport staff are set to hold protests on Tuesday (14th February) against plans to close Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency offices.
The demonstrations will be held outside DVLA offices including in Bournemouth, Brighton, and Portsmouth, between 12.30pm and 1.30pm.
In devastating news for staff, the government announced two weeks before Christmas that it wants to close all 39 of the agency's local and enforcement offices in England, Wales and Scotland, putting 1,200 jobs at risk - more than 340 of which are in the south east.
The Public and Services Union warns that closures would wipe out the high quality face-to-face services staff in these offices provide to the public and motor traders, whose often complex enquiries could not be handled by telephone or online.
The cuts to offices and jobs would also be a further blow to local economies and retail areas already struggling as a result of rising unemployment and wage cuts.
Despite an ongoing public consultation, the decision already appears to have been taken, the union says. The two flawed consultations over coastguard station closures - also run by the Department for Transport - means the public and businesses can have no faith in senior managers' and ministers' willingness to listen to, and act on, concerns.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: "We will not sit back and watch while jobs and highly-prized public services are stripped away. Our local economies are crying out for support and investment, not more cuts.
"The closure plans are not based on what the people who use these services say they want and need, but on a politically motivated desire to unpick our public services."