Public service workers paying the price of austerity

Responding to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement today, UNISON’s general secretary Dave Prentis said: “It is sickening that George Osborne is once again expecting public service workers to work more for less and pay the price of his failed plan to revive the economy.

“Austerity has not worked and despite this the government is going ahead with more cuts which will inevitably mean more pay freezes.

“There is nothing in his statement that will support workers and the lowest-paid. Nothing to help the million public sector workers who have seen the value of their pay fall by at least 10% since the coalition came to power.

“Workers are paying the price of austerity while the rich and privileged share the benefits. The government has nothing but contempt for the hardworking people in this country.

“The truth is four years of austerity has caused untold damage to the economy, to the public services families rely on and to the daily lives of million of people.

“An increasing number of full time public sector workers have to borrow money every month and rely on second jobs to survive.

“And the rise of precarious jobs is hardly something to be proud of. More people work part-time because they can’t find full-time jobs, more people are on precarious zero-hour contracts.

“The recovery the government has been boasting about is still not being felt by workers. A recovery that only benefits the privileged few in this country is no good for the economy and for workers.

“The economy is not safe and nor are workers whose jobs are increasingly insecure. And the hardest-hit are communities and the most vulnerable. This was the government’s last chance to reverse the cuts. They should now pay the price at the next election.”