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Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Public service strikes on 10 May

  • Published: Thursday, 10 May 2012

A small number of trade unions have called a one-day strike today (Thursday 10 May). There is expected to be some disruption to some public services, although others will be unaffected. The industrial action is due to end at midnight tonight.

Services unaffected by the strike

Schools and colleges

The teaching unions are not striking, so there will be no impact on schools and colleges.

Local council services

Local council services such as bin collections, street cleaning, day centres, registrars, recycling centres, leisure centres, crematoria and children's services will not be affected.

Public transport

Public transport will be running as usual.

Emergency health and care services

Emergency and critical care services will be operating normally and 999 calls will be responded to during the industrial action.

UK borders and visas

Border control

If you're travelling into or out of the UK today you may face a slightly longer than normal waiting time, although the Border Force is aiming to keep unnecessary disruption at ports and airports to a minimum.

For the latest information check with your carrier.

If you are arriving in the UK today, you can help by:

  • having travel documents, including passports, available and taken out of any wallets
  • using automatic e-Passport gates (where available)
  • having landing cards fully completed and ready
  • staying in family groups

Other services

Services in the UK, including enforcement and public enquiry offices, aim to provide a close to normal service.

Jobcentres, benefits and pensions

The Department for Work and Pensions expects that almost all Jobcentres are likely to remain open to the public.

If you have a specific appointment at a Jobcentre you should attend as normal.

Should I sign on as normal?

No. If you are due to sign-on today you do not need to attend, unless you are a part time worker and usually attend.

Benefit and pension payments

Automated benefit and pension payments, including those to pensioners and jobseekers, will continue as usual. Around 98 per cent of people receive automated payments.

Student loans

If you need to telephone the Student Loans Company today about your student loan application or payments, it may take longer than usual to speak to a customer adviser.

Repayment lines will be open as normal although it may take longer to get through to an adviser, as a result of the strike. Remember you will still be able to update details online, obtain your account balance or make payments to your loan.

Services will be back to normal on Friday 11 May.

Driving tests

Practical driving tests

If you are booked to take your driving test on 10 May, you should turn up at the test centre as normal.

If no examiner is available for a test, a new date will be rebooked automatically and you will be sent details of the new test.

However, if you fail to attend you will not be able to claim out-of-pocket expenses if your test is cancelled - and you will need to rebook your own test.

Theory tests

Theory tests are not affected and will be taking place as planned.

Driver and vehicle licensing

DVLA customer enquiries

DVLA customer enquiries will be operating a reduced service on 10 May and you may experience longer waiting times if trying to contact DVLA by phone. General motoring information is available online.

Online services

You may wish to consider using DVLA's online services or your nearest Post Office branch.

DVLA local offices

As DVLA cannot guarantee a business as usual service, please avoid travelling to any DVLA local offices on this day.


The Identity and Passport Service expects all regional customer service centres to be open on 10 May and is making every effort to provide passport services to customers.

Customers with emergency or compassionate travel needs will be given priority.

For further advice please telephone the passport adviceline on 0300 222 0000.

Courts and tribunal services

The delivery of the most essential court and tribunal services, including custody and urgent family cases, will be prioritised by Her Majesty's Courts & Tribunals Service.

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