Immigration workers to join civil service pension strike

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Hopes of an immediate respite for passengers facing lengthy passport queues at Heathrow and other British airports have been dashed after immigration border staff announced their intention to join next week’s civil service strike over pensions.

The Immigration Service Union, which includes most of the passport desk staff among its 4,500 members, said it was notifying the Cabinet Office that it intended to take part in the industrial action next Thursday.

Ministers had announced an extra 80 “back-office” immigration staff were to be drafted in to work on the passport desks at the busiest times, after prime minister David Cameron and home secretary Theresa May agreed it was time to “get a grip” on the unacceptable queues at Heathrow. The move raised hopes that the worst of the passport crisis might be over.

 

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