Reposted from PCS website
The Home Office had tried to prevent our members’ responses being made public by seeking a high court injunction, citing national security.
But in a special investigation aired on ITV News this evening the true picture of the “shambolic” Border Force, where morale is at rock bottom, was made clear.
In the survey 98% of respondents said there were not enough staff to check goods vehicles and freight for illegal substances and stowaways.
Almost two thirds said they had been removed from customs checks to work on passport controls, leaving a shortage of staff on customs. Of these, 80% said this happened daily or weekly.
Our general secretary Mark Serwotka told ITV: “The risks are fairly clear that stuff is coming into this country that shouldn’t.
“That could include weapons, drugs and ultimately people being smuggled into the country and these are all the things Theresa May says she is tough on and what this story shows, is it’s alright to say that, but she is not providing the resources to ensure those jobs are adequately done.
“The government’s response to us trying to expose this situation has been extraordinary because they have gone to the high court, taken out an injunction on national security grounds to stop us even trying to get this story into the public domain.
“And I think most people would find that that is an incredible response from the government. Instead of trying to put the resources in place they are trying to gag those who want to expose this to the public and indeed to the managers at Border Force.”
Comments by survey respondents tell a damning tale of working conditions. These included:
“Border Force are papering over the cracks. Staff morale is the lowest I have ever known. Staff are concerned about the security of the border, with regard to drug importation, revenue avoidance and people trafficking.”
“This is the most shambolic and dysfunctional organisation I have ever worked for in 30 years working in the civil service.”
“Staff are demotivated, angry and resentful of the circumstances they find themselves in. Simply put, Border Force is broken and ministers seem unwilling or unable to deal with the problems at hand.”