The average public service wage has fallen by over £3000 in real terms since the Great Crash. Workers will seek to recover their standard of living over the coming period
Responding to the pledge from Nicola Sturgeon that she will lift the public pay cap and news reports that Theresa May might do the same, Grahame Smith, STUC General Secretary said.
“Whilst there finally appears to be some movement from government on the pay cap, this is only the beginning of the fight to restore workers’ pay. The average public service real terms wage has fallen by over £3000 since the 2010 Crash. The turmoil in the Cabinet over public sector pay reflects the fact that the current situation is completely unsustainable.
“Public service workers’ pay continues to fall below the rise in the cost of living. Rather than waiting until next year, government should act now.
“The Scottish Government should build on its announcement by making clear that it expects all public bodies to agree pay increases which exceed the rise in the cost of living. It must provide sufficient funding tied to these pay rises to ensure this takes place.
“As well as negatively affecting workers' lives this has damaged local economies and the businesses which rely on them.
Smith said that benefits to the Scottish economy of above inflation pay awards had increased since the Parliament gained new tax and welfare powers.
“Retaining more income tax and VAT receipts provides an additional incentive for government to increase the pay of all public service workers because Scotland will retain an increased proportion of a decent pay settlement. Fair pay will also combat increasing problems with recruitment and retention in some areas of public service.”
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