Oh dear, all is not well in the HMRC......sorry I have just realised what I have said there, rather obvious that things are not well in HMRC isn't it?
It is reported that the Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union will next week begin balloting members on possible strike action, to protest at continuing redundancies at Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.
The PCS's HMRC group executive committee is asking all members within HMRC to vote yes to the proposed action.
Needless to say the PCS union has blamed job losses, budget cuts, and reorganisation for the loss of the child benefit database in November. This excuse is of course total nonsense.
The reason that the data was lost was because HMRC did not have adequate procedures in place for handling data, and those controls that were in operation were not being adequately followed.
Nothing at all to do with reorganisation, but everything to do with the lax attitude to the security of taxpayers' data, which comes from the very top of the organisation.
The PCS is asking its members:
"to take part in one day's strike action on Thursday 31 January 2008 and action short of strike action, from the following day, should this be necessary depending on the outcome of further negotiations".
A cynic might argue that the hard pressed taxpayer will not notice anything if HMRC goes on strike on these two days. However, 31 January is the deadline for self assessment; miss that, and you are liable for a £100 fine.
What's the betting that those whose self assessments that get caught up in the confusion of the strike will be landed with a fine?
Simplify the tax system and cut the HMRC down to size!
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