UNISON’s public sector pay cap petition to be debated by Parliament

UNISON’s petition calling on the government to scrap the public sector pay cap and give NHS, council, police and school staff a decent pay rise is to be debated in Parliament.

Ahead of the debate, Dave Prentis, UNISON general secretary, has written to Theresa May to ask her why the Budget failed to address the lack of pay rises for public service employees.

UNISON’s ‘Pay Up Now!’ petition, which has gained nearly 150,000 signatures, is to be debated on by the parliament. It demands an immediate pay rise for all public service staff - at least one that is in rise with inflation.

In the letter Prentis writes: “For more than seven years, public service workers have been getting steadily poorer as the gap between their wage rises and the cost of living has grown.

“As a result they’ve been left thousands of pounds a year worse off, which has had a profound impact on the finances of millions of families, and on local economies, as households with public service employees rein in their spending.

“Services too are suffering as many experienced staff from hospitals, local councils, schools and police forces, opt for less stressful, better paid jobs outside the public sector, and those same services struggle to attract sufficient numbers of new recruits.

“Even though there was talk in the Budget of more money for health workers, reports since suggest that NHS staff may have to pay for their own wage rise, a hardly acceptable state of affairs after years of pay pain.

“Each and every month, the value of public sector pay packets is in decline. And with inflation now four per cent, the gap between what dedicated public servants are paid, and what they can afford, grows ever wider.”

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