The Sheriff Clerk would like to make all members of the RFPG aware of the following:
On 11 January, the PCS National Executive Committee met and called for UK wide industrial action, next Wednesday, 1 February 2023. The strike will cover 100,000 members from 124 different departments, including SCTS, COPFS, SPS and SG.
In anticipation of significant disruption to court operations as a result of the strike action, I attach a copy of the planned court programme for next Wednesday. Please note that this may be subject to further reductions on the day.
All ongoing trials to be adjourned from Tuesday to Thursday.
Ballots can and should take place on Tuesday with jurors to attend on Thursday.
No indictments will call in any of the jury courts.
Sheriff Elfallah will preside in court 11, within which the 2 outstanding custody trials and her part-heard trial from the previous day will proceed.
All other trials (and associated deferred sentences) will call in Court 5.
The clerk will liaise with the Crown and Defence on the morning of the court to agree adjournment dates in the absence of the sheriff.
The Sheriff will then be asked to preside over a call-over and disposal of all cases in which dates have been agreed. It would be our hope that Defence agents need not wait for the call-over if dates have been agreed by the clerk.
Any other cases – such as those involving an unrepresented accused or where a plea of guilt is to be tendered - will call after the call-over.
All JP business will call in Court 1A to be disposed of by the JP and a locum Legal Advisor. All JP signing appointments have been cancelled.
It is anticipated that the following courts will proceed as planned:
• First Diets
• Summary custodies
• Remand (mainstream and domestic)
• Intermediate diet
COPFS have been asked to countermand all witnesses with the exception of those required for court 11.
No serving prisoners due to appear in a summary trial court should be ordered.
All civil courts will proceed as programmed with the exception of an adoption proof.
Incoming mail will not be opened. Outgoing mail will not be uplifted.
Public counters will be closed.