Austin pledges to fight plans to make 250 civil servants redundant in Dudley
Dudley North MP Ian Austin is calling on government ministers to drop plans to close HMRC offices in Dudley and make more than 250 civil servants redundant.
Staff employed at the HMRC’s tax credits office at the Waterfront in Brierley Hill had been told they would be transferred to the Department for Work and Pensions to work on the introduction and implementation of Universal Credit. Just weeks ago in October, they were told they would remain at the Waterfront Offices working on the new benefit.
But last week – in a shock U-turn – staff were told their jobs were at risk and the office would close.
Austin met constituents employed at the site and union representatives over the weekend. He is demanding urgent meetings with the Chancellor of the Exchequer and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions about the threat to the offices and jobs and has tabled a series of Parliamentary Questions.
He is urging ministers to keep the Brierley Hill offices open and ensure the highly-skilled HMRC staff are used to assist with introducing Universal Credit.
Austin stood up in Parliament yesterday and secured a meeting with Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Esther McVey to discuss the future of the HMRC offices.
Ian Austin said:
“This decision has come as a huge shock to staff I met over the weekend.
“These are hard-working and highly-skilled public servants. They are very worried about their future and we need to ensure their jobs stay in Dudley.
“Last year the government made the Waterfront an Enterprise Zone but now they’re planning to close the office, and just weeks ago the highly-skilled staff at HMRC were told they would be working on the introduction of Universal Credit but now they’ve been told their jobs are at risk.”