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Wednesday 25th July 2012 | 17:40
Home Office minister Damian Green should explain his extraordinary comments about the hundreds of jobs being advertised in the border force, the Public and Commercial Services union says.
Mr Green has told the media that he "did not recognise" the figure of 800 jobs, despite these currently being advertised on the civil service's own jobs website.
He has also claimed the Home Office is recruiting smaller numbers, with adverts placed "several weeks ago" and that some posts have already been filled.
The fact is that 400 assistant border force officer and 400 border force officer posts were first advertised on Friday 20 July - the day after the union gave notice of its intention to strike tomorrow - with a closing date of Friday 3 August.
The union is publishing the adverts on its website and asking the minister to explain why he has been trying to mislead people.
As well as these permanent jobs - including posts at Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton and other airports and ports across the UK - the Home Office will be recruiting 300 new jobs in the passport service.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: "There have been some extraordinary claims made by the minister but not least that he says he does not recognise the existence of these job ads and that we have 'made them up'.
"We fail to understand why ministers do not want to acknowledge the good news that, at a time of high unemployment, 1,100 jobs are being created to bolster vital services to the public that have been cracking under the strain of the government's cuts."