Commenting on the news that the government will sell off dozens of state-owned services into so-called mutuals, Dave Prentis, UNISON general secretary, said: “This is privatisation by stealth. The involvement of big private companies makes mutuals just another Tory party ploy to sell off public services.”
He added: “The government is stretching the definition of mutuals to the limit – genuine co-ops and mutuals will be up in arms.
“Staff will be plunged into confusion and could face being taken out of public sector pension schemes and having their pay and conditions seriously harmed. Community organisations will struggle to win contracts without harsh measures, such as freezing pay and reducing leave and sick pay.
“Mutuals are dangerously untested in this context. At the very least, we need a serious investigation as to how mutuals would deliver public services in the interest of the public and employees.”