Calls for John Swinney to end to pay freeze
Union chiefs have urged the finance secretary to end the public-sector pay freeze, arguing that increasing wages for hundreds of thousands of workers could help the economy.
John Swinney introduced a freeze on the wages of public-sector workers earning more than £21,000 in 2011-12, with salaries remaining unchanged for a second year in 2012-13.
The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union branded the move “massively unfair” and urged the finance secretary to use next week’s budget to increase workers’ wages.
Mr Swinney is due to unveil his budget for 2013-14 to Holyrood next Thursday.
Ahead of that, Malcolm Clark, interim chair of the PCS Scottish sector forum, argued upping pay for public-sector workers could help with economic growth.
He said: “We call on John Swinney to use the forthcoming Scottish budget to implement a Scottish alternative which recognises that raising wages boosts growth This means committing the resources to support pay rises that at least keep pace with inflation.”
PCS Scottish secretary Lynn Henderson said: “Against a background of rising household costs, increased pension contributions and job losses, it is particularly disappointing that Scottish ministers continue to follow Westminster’s lead and impose a pay freeze on their own staff and those who deliver Scottish public services for them.
“It is massively unfair to attack the livelihoods of public-sector workers who are not to blame for the economic mess.”
When he announced his budget for 2012-13 last September, Mr Swinney said he hoped to be able to end the pay freeze in 2013-14.
The Finance Secretary said at the time: “My aim is that 2012-13 will be the last year of a pay freeze and we may be able to see modest increases in the years that follow.”
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Wednesday 19 June 2013
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