In a new development that has rocked the foundations of the British civil service, Whitehall bureaucrats have reportedly been asked to do work and have responded with claims of being bullied.

According to sources, a memo was sent out to civil servants asking them to carry out their job responsibilities in a timely and efficient manner. However, instead of taking this as a routine request, many of the bureaucrats were apparently left traumatized by what they saw as an oppressive and overbearing demand.

“I can’t believe I’m being asked to do actual work,” said one unnamed civil servant, tears streaming down their face. “This is clearly a form of bullying and harassment. I mean, why can’t we just continue to shuffle papers around and attend pointless meetings like we always have?”

Other civil servants echoed this sentiment, with some even claiming that they had been left with no choice but to seek medical attention for the emotional distress caused by the request to actually do their job.

“I was so shocked and overwhelmed by the thought of having to work that I had a panic attack,” said another civil servant. “This is just unacceptable. I thought we were supposed to be a supportive and nurturing workplace.”

Despite the outcry, many outside observers have expressed confusion and frustration at the civil servants’ response, with some pointing out that doing work is, in fact, the entire point of having a job.

“It’s hard to sympathize with people who are complaining about being asked to do the very thing they’re being paid to do,” said one commentator. “If you don’t want to work, maybe you should look for a different career path.”

As of press time, it remains unclear how the situation will be resolved, but it’s clear that the incident has raised serious questions about the work ethic of Whitehall bureaucrats and the culture of entitlement that some say has permeated the British civil service.