HC Deb 16 April 1981 vol 3 cc271-2W
Mr. Michael Brown

asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement about the effects of the current Civil Service pay dispute on the Northern Ireland Civil Service.

Mr. Alison

The Northern Ireland Public Service Alliance—NIPSA which represents non-industrial staff, other than senior officers, in the Northern Ireland Civil Service gave notice of strike action on 9 March 1981 and limited industrial action from 10 March 1981 in support of the pay claim of the Council of Civil Service Unions.

On 9 March, in response to the call for a one-day strike, 14,098 Northern Ireland civil servants—60 per cent. of all non-industrial staff—stayed away from work.

On 1 April 1981 a call for selective industrial action resulted in about 6,000 non-industrial staff leaving their offices for periods of up to three hours. On 6 April 1981, a small number of data processors in the Department of Health and Social Services went on strike for a week. On 14 April about 10,000 non-industrial staff left their offices for half a day.

So far this industrial action has caused some administrative difficulties but inconvenience to the public has been kept to a minimum.