Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Tax workers fight for jobs and to close Tax Gap

Yesterday around 200 PCS members working for HM Revenue & Customs around the country descended on Parliament to lobby MPs.

The lobby and rally are part of the union's HOOT (Hands off our tax offices) campaign and comes in response to a programme of office closures and job cuts by HMRC, which will see over 200 offices closed across the UK and 25,000 jobs cut by 2011.

(A few MPs however have seen the light - as demonstrated by two EDMs: 762 and 665.)

Given the massive Tax Gap, which people like the Tax Justice Network have been highlighting for years and which the Guardian has been focusing on for the past two weeks, it is nonsensical that the Government is laying off people who collect taxes.

Even the most conservative estimates show there is £21.5 billion worth of uncollected tax and £25 billion lost through tax evasion which could be ploughed into public services and stimulating the economy.

Also at a time of recession, and when the Government says it will create jobs, why is it sacking 25,000 people - just because, as John McDonnell MP pointed out at yesterday's rally, Gordon Brown got into a Dutch auction with the Tories about how many civil service jobs he could cut?

Yet again in this recession the Government, wedded to its neoliberal ideology, is taking precisely the wrong action - and will exacerbate the crisis.

10am update: Another excellent article by Prem Sikka on the role of transfer pricing in tax avoidance


  1. When you think of the Royal mail redundancies, then you have the tax offices then you have the job centers who will be sold off according to our beloved Leader the Furher. Then you have companies coming here with cheaper Labour.

    You have to worry what country Labour are working for .

  2. Not what country, but what class.

    We are in a recession thanks to the banks and other corporates, and New Labour is rewarding them by giving them more essential public services - while cutting jobs and pay for the ordinary workers.

    New Labour is the Tory Party in red.

    Who benefits from cheap foreign labour? The workforce, exploited and shipped across the globe? No. Their bosses who save on wages and make more profit.

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