Rade union leaders called for a “sense of fairness” after Chancellor Rishi Sunak suggested he could impose a public sector pay freeze
The Chancellor insisted the nation won’t see a return to austerity next week, but left open the possibility of freezing the wages of millions of public sector workers during the spending review Wednesday
M Sunak told Sky’s Sophy Ridge on Sunday: “You won’t see austerity next week, you will see increased government spending, for day-to-day utilities, a pretty big increase on the upside that we had. Last year”
But, while declaring that he “cannot comment on the future remuneration policy”, Mr. Sunak added, “When we launched the expenditure review, I told the departments that when we think of public wage settlements, I think it would be quite reasonable to think of these in the context of the economic climate. wider “
The unions have reacted angrily to this prospect and there is a risk of industrial action if a freeze is confirmed
Frances O’Grady, head of the TUC Confederation of Trade Unions, called for a “sense of fairness” urging ministers not to impose a public sector wage freeze, which should exempt top workers nhs line
“We’ve seen ministers join millions of us in applauding firefighters, garbage pickers, social workers – I don’t think this is the time to reward them with a real pay cut “she told Ridge.
“If you want to motivate a staff while we are still facing a second wave of the pandemic and we’re going to have a tough winter – we all know that – the last thing you do is threaten to cut their pay.”
Phantom Chancellor Anneliese Dodds said a freeze on public sector wages would undermine confidence in the economy and “pit different groups of workers against each other”
“To be clear I don’t think there should be this freeze now I think it is very damaging economically, it is an irresponsible choice” said the Labor MP
Shadow Minister of Business Lucy Powell says it would be “morally” wrong to freeze the salaries of those who have supported the nation throughout the pandemic
“It would be a real kick in the teeth for them after these horrible few months and what will still be difficult in the next few months,” she told Ridge.
In the expenditure review, Mr. Sunak to unveil £ 3bn package to help NHS recover from pandemic, with treasury saying NHS will get £ 1bn to resolve arrears by catching up on checks, scans and operations who have been delayed by Covid-19
Around £ 1.5bn will be used to alleviate existing pressures in health services and £ 500m will help support mental health services
M Sunak will also detail the much-delayed national infrastructure strategy for £ 100bn in long-term spending to help tackle the climate crisis and invest in transport
World News – GB – Fury after Rishi Sunak suggests possible public sector wage freeze