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Friday, October 11, 2013

The need for eternal vigilance

In politics one dare not assume anything. The worst thing that you can do is to think that because you have won over a particular issue then it is dead and buried. There will always be somebody trying to ressurrect it.

Thus, the comprehensive victory by the Liberal Democrats within the coalition government to kill off the notion of extending regional pay in the public sector is being challenged, this time by a think tank called Policy Exchange who, according to the Western Mail want to re-open the debate.

They have said that workers in the UK public sector earn on average 6.1% more than counterparts in the private sector.  In a report out today they argue that the public sector “premium” in the North East, Merseyside and the South West is as high as 14%, or over £3,000 a year.

They want to “remove automatic pay uplifts for public sector employees, abolish national pay bargaining and move to a system of pay negotiation which can reflect local labour markets and reward performance.”

Not whilst the Liberal Democrats are in Government. As Welsh Liberal Democrats Economic Spokesperson, Eluned Parrott says: “The introduction of regional pay would be disastrous for Welsh workers and the Welsh economy. All it would do is serve to further engrain regional inequalities.

“The Welsh Liberal Democrats fought and won our campaign to halt George Osborne’s plans for regional pay. His plans are dead in the water because Liberal Democrat Ministers insisted it wouldn’t happen on their watch.

“It is important to remember it was Labour who first introduced regional pay into our courts system... It is clear that neither the Tories nor Labour can be trusted on this issue.”

We believe in a rate for the job, no matter which part of the UK a worker is based in.
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