Government ‘not budging’ on public sector pay and pensions

I know that not everyone agrees with strike action by public sector workers, but hear me out if you will.
I am a public sector worker and have been for some time, when Thatcher was in power, it was agreed, with government and the unions, that public sector workers (the majority anyway) would accept lower wages for enhanced pension and redundancy rights; but now, the government are tearing up those existing contracts … that is illegal.I thought I was going to be able to retire at 60 (I’ve been working since I was 17) but now, I will have to remain in work (if my health permits) until 66 at the least, because of changes to the state pension. Talk about this government moving the goal posts half way through the game!In my social circle, I have conversations with fire officers and prison officers; here’s some of the things they’ve told me.

I’m a prison officer. Do this government seriously expect me to carry on working past what was once normal retirement age? Are they really saying that they expect me, an elderly man to physically restrain 18 to 20 year olds who have been working out in their cells without me coming to harm?

 I am a fire officer, been doing it since I left school and I love it; but, how can I carry on working into my old age given the nature of what I do. Even with the specialist breathing apparatus I use, you still suffer lung damage long term, it’s inevitable. Then when you can no longer work because your lungs are fuc*ed, this government want to cut your pension payments after they’ve made you pay increased pension subscriptions in during your working life.

It’s interesting to note, that this government have increased National Minimum Wage by 19 pence, Public Sector pay by 1% (although those workers on their maximum pay band will only receive 0.5%) whilst giving themselves a pay rise of 11%!!!!! Well they are public sector workers aren’t they? So why are they not applying the same criteria to themselves?
I’ve always liked fun boy three and every time I think of the Tories, I hum this tune…
Lyrics are here, feel free to sing along.
I see a clinic full of cynics
Who want to twist the peoples' wrist
They're watching every move we make
We're all included on the list

The lunatics have taken over the asylum
The lunatics have taken over the asylum

No nuclear the cowboy told us
And who am i to disagree
'cause when the madman flips the switch
The nuclear will go for me

The lunatics have taken over the asylum
The lunatics have taken over the asylum

I've seen the faces of starvation
But i just can not see the points
'cause there's so much food here today
That no one wants to take away

The lunatics have taken over the asylum
The lunatics have taken over the asylum
The lunatics have taken over the asylum, take away my right to choose
The lunatics have taken over the asylum, take away my point of view
The lunatics have taken over the asylum
The lunatics have taken over the asylum, take away my dignity, 
Take these things away from me
The lunatics have taken over the asylum
The lunatics have taken over the asylum, take away my family, 
Take away the right to speak
The lunatics have taken over the asylum take away my point of view, 
Take away my right to choose

P.S I'll give you a clue ... it's about politicians

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The government is “not budging” on its changes to pay and pensions for public sector workers, Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude has said.

Mr Maude told Sky News it would be “totally irresponsible” to reverse changes that made pay and pensions “affordable and sustainable”.

More than a million public sector workers are expected to take part in a strike on Thursday.

They include council staff, teachers, firefighters and civil servants.

Mr Maude criticised unions for holding strikes based on ballots with low turnout, claiming that one persuaded just 20% of its eligible members to vote.

He said the National Union of Teachers (NUT) was striking on the basis of a ballot held nearly two years ago and it showed a “great lack of self-confidence” that a new ballot was not being held.

‘Not listening’

Firefighters on strike in July 2014Firefighters object to changes to their pensions

The NUT says its summer 2012 ballot remains in force and allows it to take further strike action.

It says its members overwhelmingly supported the call for joint action on pay and working conditions.

The latest proposed strike follows two years of pay freezes for teachers, a 1% pay cap in 2013 and a 1% pay rise announced for this year.

The NUT says this pay restraint combined with increased pension contributions means the real value of teachers’ take-home pay will have fallen by 15% over the life of the coalition government.

Thursday’s planned strike brings together union members involved in a range of disputes with the government on pay and other issues.

Those expected to take part include:

  • Firefighters involved in a row over pensions and retirement age
  • Civil servants, including Passport Office, job centre and courts staff, who have rejected a pay rise capped at 1%
  • Council and school support workers who have dismissed a pay offer worth 1% to most
  • Teachers who say they are “under attack” from the government on pay, pensions, workload pressure and conditions.

The general secretary of umbrella union organisation the TUC told the BBC’s Sunday Politics it “seems like the government isn’t listening” to ordinary people.

Frances O’Grady said it “really sticks in the throat” that the government could offer tax cuts for millionaires but not find more money for dinner ladies.

The Cabinet Office has said public sector pay restraint protects jobs, supports public services and is necessary to help restore the national finances.

Last month, the Cabinet Office said the government had made savings of £1.1bn by restricting wage inflation in 2013/14 and further savings from reforming civil service pensions.

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22 Responses to Government ‘not budging’ on public sector pay and pensions

  1. There’s something wrong here. Tax freedom day is up to June, so everyone is paying nearly half their income in taxes. VAT. – I’ve lost track. Is it 20 percent now? On nearly everything we buy and nearly every service we use. Pension age has been pushed back and even pensioners who have reached retirement age, more than ever before are continuing in work just to make ends meet. Rents, Rates and utility bills are the highest they have ever been. Services have been cut and charges have been introduced and/or increased on those remaining. The population has never been higher . Money has been saved on jobs making the remaining workers work harder for a cut in real wages. The government has never had so much money. Where is it going? Are there records anywhere which give a breakdown of what the government obtains in taxes and what the government spends it on?


  2. sdbast says:

    Reblogged this on sdbast.


  3. Pingback: Government 'not budging' on public sector pay a...

  4. beastrabban says:

    Reblogged this on Beastrabban’s Weblog and commented:
    Glynis here provides detailed information on just why public sector workers are going on strike on Thursday. She quotes some of the people involved – prison officers and firemen, on why the government’s demands that they should work far past their usual retirement age is wrong, due to the strains and stresses of their jobs. And there’s a piece of vintage satirical song by Funboy Three.


  5. jaypot2012 says:

    I think that the strike should be for 3 days and should include the transport workers as well – hit them in the pocket, as we have been hit. That would certainly hold more clout.
    I’m behind them all the way and hope that these idiotic people who complain get off their high horses and see just what is happening.


  6. jaypot2012 says:

    Reblogged this on Jay's Journal and commented:
    I’m supporting them, are you?


  7. Reblogged this on amnesiaclinic and commented:
    Please read this before you condemn the unions for going on strike.


  8. Glynis, May I borrow you as an encyclopedia of state legislation? I just saw the article on Same Difference, reblogged to Benefit Tales about a lady of 90 receiving a letter for an interview re her entitlement to benefits. Several years back Pensions were subsumed under Welfare. I’ve spent several hours trying to find when the change in name took place, without success. I thought at the time this was putting a wedge into Pensions, paid for out of work contributions and NI, to undermine the idea of entitlement (setting Pensions up for attack at a later date). It then occurred to me that the constant droning about the size of the Welfare bill, when half the “welfare” bill IS pensions – were Pensions under a different budget heading? When it became “welfare and Pensions” was the pension component added to the welfare Bill, thus doubling it and permitting the govt rhetoric on massive welfare spending? I need clarification. Any ideas? (They are bloody con artists anyway)
    Thanks. Clair


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