Threat to block public sector pay rises proves government’s out of ideas, says UNISON

Pay is key to turning around the staffing emergency.

Commenting on reports today (Saturday) that ministers are considering rejecting the recommendations of several public sector pay review bodies, UNISON assistant general secretary Jon Richards said:

“In the last pay round, the government spent months hiding behind the NHS pay review body (PRB). Ridiculous claims ministers couldn’t intervene with the PRB led to strikes and much needless disruption to patients and services.
“For the prime minister to be pondering blocking the other pay review bodies is utterly farcical.
“It’s time to ditch this outmoded way of setting pay in essential services. Direct talks with unions, employers and ministers would be better for everyone.
“The Covid inquiry is hearing how investment-starved public services with too few staff were ill prepared for the pandemic.
“Pay is key to turning around the staffing emergency. And reckless talk like this will prompt even more essential workers to quit for pastures new.
“This is an out-of-touch, out-of-ideas government. The case for an early general election grows stronger by the day.”

Notes to editors: 

– UNISON is the UK’s largest union with more than 1.3 million members providing public services in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in the public, voluntary and private sectors.  

Media contact:  

Liz Chinchen M: 07778 158175 E: