Migrant crisis: Braverman urged to SACK civil servants striking over Rwanda plan

Jacob Rees-Mogg and Suella Braverman

Jacob Rees-Mogg says striking civil servants should be sacked

GB News
Ben Chapman

By Ben Chapman

Published: 30/05/2023

- 19:04

Civil servants are reportedly threatening to strike

Civil servants opposed to the Rwanda migrant policy who strike or even threaten to do so should resign, according to Jacob Rees-Mogg.

It comes after the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union, which represents nearly 16,000 staff in the Home Office and Border Force, admitted it would “consider” industrial action should members be forced to implement measures they consider to be unlawful.

Judicial review has previously been threatened by the PCS after they refused to co-operate with Priti Patel, the former home secretary, with plans to use Border Force jet skis to turn back migrants attempting to cross the Channel.

Speaking on GB News, Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg said: “It seems to me that you can't go on strike as a civil servant if you don't like Government policy.

“You have to resign, and any civil servant who claims to strike on the basis of opposition to government policy who doesn't resign should be fired.

“This is not like going on strike over pay or conditions or anything like this.

“It's a fundamental opposition to the whole basis of our Constitution that has an apolitical civil service.

“Any Home Office civil servant who fails to carry out the lawful instructions of the elected government should be fired.”

Home Office workers have previously spoken out on their opposition to Suella Braverman’s aim of detaining and deporting anyone arriving in a dinghy.

PCS Head of Bargaining Paul O’Connor told the Telegraph the group is “ruling absolutely nothing out in terms of responses to look after the welfare of our members”.

He added: “If the Government carry on in the way they have, we are going to have to consider an industrial response to it. We have taken a view that it cannot go on. The hostile environment has got to be dismantled. It is just not working. It is not an effective immigration system.

“Our members are at the sharp end of this day in, day out and have to work in horrendous conditions.

"There will be no stomach amongst our members for implementing an Illegal Migration Bill, and they will inevitably come to their trade union to see if there is recourse to stop it happening.”

A Home Office spokesman said: “Our staff work tirelessly to deliver ground-breaking policies, such as the Illegal Migration Bill. This will reform our immigration system and stop the boats, while still remaining party to the European Convention on Human Rights.

“We have always maintained that the UK and Rwanda Migration and Economic Development Partnership is lawful, including complying with the Refugee Convention, and last year the High Court upheld this. We stand ready to continue to defend the policy against legal challenge.”

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