Scotland’s Public Sector Pay Cap to be Lifted
September 12, 2017
Nicola Sturgeon has announced that she will scrap the 1 per cent cap on pay in the public sector across Scotland.
The first minister has said that frontline public sector employees, whose pay has been restrained across the UK for a number of years, “deserve a fairer deal for the future”.
Nurses, police officers, firefighters and teachers throughout Scotland could now be in line for a pay rise that gets closer to the headline rate of inflation which reached a four-year high of 2.9 per cent in May.
Ms Sturgeon, who leads the Scottish National Party (SNP) in the Scottish parliament, said that the cap on public sector pay was never a desirable policy but has been “necessary to protect jobs and services” in recent years.
“However, with inflation on the rise, it is not sustainable,” she said. “Our nurses, teachers, police officers and firefighters deserve a fairer deal for the future.
“We will therefore aim to secure pay rises from next year that are affordable, but which also reflect the real life circumstances our public servants face and the contribution our public services make to the overall prosperity of our country.”
A proposal to lift the cap on public sector pay was put forward to the Scottish parliament by Labour SNPs in May of this year but the motion was defeated in a vote in Holyrood.
Prime minister Theresa May is currently under pressure to lift the cap on pay in the public sector throughout the UK but it remains unclear whether that action will be taken in the near future.
Public sector workers have seen their pay rises capped at 1 per cent since 2010, during which time inflation has seen prices for everyday items rising considerably more quickly.
Inflation is currently well above the Bank of England’s own target of 2 per cent or lower and that is leaving not just public sector workers but millions of Scottish and UK consumers feeling the financial pinch.
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