Unite recruits Grinch to clinch pay rise

Unite members working in local government will today be joined by the Christmas pay pinch Grinch to hand in a giant Christmas card to HM Treasury urging the chancellor Philip Hammond to show some Christmas spirit and fund a proper pay rise.

The photo opportunity, which is part of national campaign day on local government pay involving Unite, Unison and GMB, follows a pay offer that was tabled by local government employers this week. Unite is fearful that without additional government money to fund a proper pay rise, austerity hit councils will not be able to ease the wage pain and protect vital public services.

In addition to a number of local authorities seeing their budgets slashed in half, the government’s cuts agenda has seen the pay of some local government workers squeezed by as much as 21 per cent in real terms since the Conservatives came into power in 2010.

Unite national officer Jim Kennedy said: “Over the last seven years local government workers have seen their pay plummet in real terms by as much as 21 per cent thanks to the government’s pay pinch Grinch.

“It’s time that Philip Hammond and the government showed some Christmas spirit by committing extra funds to austerity ravaged councils to protect services and give local government workers the pay rise they need.

“A failure to do so will lead to the crisis in local government deepening, services suffering and the pay misery for council workers continuing.

“The government needs to spread the Christmas cheer and ensure that all public sector workers get the properly funded pay rise they deserve after years of pay cuts and pay freezes.”

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