November 30, 2011
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II has threatened staff at Buckingham Palace that she will deduct of the wages of those staff who join the nationwide strike action.
The warning came after trade unions ordered 140 administrative and reception staff to walk out their jobs in a show of solidarity with other public sector workers, who did not turn up at work in protest at the coalition government’s plans to reform their pensions.
The Queen vowed to dock the pay of striking servants that include administrative and reception staff at Buckingham Palace and other royal residences.
The Palace staff had been told to walk out by Britain’s biggest civil service union, the Public and Commercial Services (PSC) Union.
“They were balloted. So we certainly expect them to walk out”, said Richard Simcox, for the PCS.
Other staff among the Royal Household’s 1,200 employees are members of other unions, such as Unison and the First Division Association, that have also voted to strike.
“We would not pay employees who do not attend work unless they are sick or on agreed leave arrangements”, said a spokeswoman for the Queen.
The strike is the biggest test so far of Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government, which sparked the unions’ fury by making public sector workers pay more into their pensions and work longer.