Workforce, Pensions and Training

23.10.17

Five million public sector workers paid less than private sector counterparts

In 2016 five million public sector workers were paid less than the equivalent private sector staff, according to figures obtained by the GMB.

The figures come from a freedom of information request by the union, which showed that the affected members of staff receive 0.6% less than their counterparts in the private sector.

It is the first time since 2005 that public sector staff have been paid less, and is at odds with the idea that a ‘premium’ is placed on these workers.

Comparisons between the two are categorised based on differences in age, gender, job type, region and tenure. In addition to this, the ONS adjusts these estimates based on employers of a similar size.

GMB comparisons also showed that, despite workers already receiving greater contributions from employers to pension schemes, public sector staff on average contributed a greater amount of their own wages into their pensions.

GMB national secretary for Public Services, Rehana Azam, called the figures “damning” and said the statistics were evidence of an “attempted cover up” by the government. The union spokesperson also called on chancellor Philip Hammond to address the problem in the next budget.

She stated: “The average local government worker earns about £20,000 while teaching assistants are paid just £12,000, and all public-sector workers have lost thousands due to a planned decade of real-terms pay cuts.

“It’s shameful that in one of the world’s richest nations some of our public-sector heroes are forced to take on debt or use food banks to make ends meet. GMB’s members are performing miracles every day, but the goodwill is at breaking point and if public services can’t retain their staff then patients’ lives will be put at risk.

“Enough is enough. In the Budget the chancellor must announce the fully funded above-inflation pay rises that public-sector workers need and so desperately deserve.”

PSE has contacted the Treasury for comment. 

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become a PSE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

Government must encourage council scrutiny ‘culture change’

15/12/2017Government must encourage council scrutiny ‘culture change’

The government has to encourage a culture change within local councils in order to improve the quality of overview and scrutiny plans. The C... more >
London council to cut sick pay in cash-saving bid

15/12/2017London council to cut sick pay in cash-saving bid

A London council has proposed to stop paying sick pay for the first three days in a bid to save money. The GMB has called Hillingdon Council&rsq... more >
Burnham announces major 2018 GMCA transport overhaul

14/12/2017Burnham announces major 2018 GMCA transport overhaul

The mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, has announced a major overhaul of the region’s transport network. Burnham said problems... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
Dorset council merger strengthened as authority withdraws opposition

14/12/2017Dorset council merger strengthened as authority withdraws opposition

Purbeck District Council is to withdraw its opposition to the reorganisation of Dorset’s councils. This week the council has agreed to write to Sajid Javid, communities and local governmen... more >
Staffordshire council CEO suspended following general election controversy

28/11/2017Staffordshire council CEO suspended following general election controversy

Two officers from Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council have been suspended following the results of a review into almost 1,500 people who were unable to vote in the general election. The con... more >

the raven's daily blog

Whole of government must act together to fulfil the ambition of the Industrial Strategy

11/12/2017Whole of government must act together to fulfil the ambition of the Industrial Strategy

Jen Rae, head of innovation policy at Nesta, says the aims in the government’s new Industrial Strategy are ambitious, but will require a shift in policymaking in order to be realised in full. Last Monday saw the long-awaited launch of the UK’s new Industrial Strategy, the government’s plan for prosperity and growth in a ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

Introducing the Facilities Management Marketplace

14/12/2017Introducing the Facilities Management Marketplace

The new Facilities Management (FM) Marketplace will be an opportunity to streamline the process of buying key services whilst propping up new ent... more >
Meet Pepper, the social care robot

14/12/2017Meet Pepper, the social care robot

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council has become the country’s first local authority to fully exploit the benefits of robotics in social care by ... more >
Quality, not quantity, is what matters

14/12/2017Quality, not quantity, is what matters

Luke Sibieta, research fellow at the Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Education Policy Institute, takes a look at the impact of the apprentic... more >
NCSC: A new and adventurous agenda

11/12/2017NCSC: A new and adventurous agenda

Ciaran Martin, chief executive of the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), reflects on the lessons learned during the first year of the governm... more >

interviews

Are we taking a risk on education?

14/12/2017Are we taking a risk on education?

Adrian Prandle, director of economic strategy and negotiations at the National Education Union (NEU), questions the stark lack of announcements a... more >
A fantastic opportunity awaits you

11/12/2017A fantastic opportunity awaits you

Eight months on from the government’s announcement of major training reforms, Anne Milton, minister for apprenticeships and skills at the D... more >
This is Manchester, we do things differently here

10/12/2017This is Manchester, we do things differently here

Joanne Roney OBE, chief executive of Manchester City Council, speaks to PSE’s Luana Salles about the region’s pioneering plans f... more >
Andy Burnham: the crisis unfolding in front of our eyes

10/12/2017Andy Burnham: the crisis unfolding in front of our eyes

With homelessness on the rise across the country, politicians in central and local government are desperately looking for new solutions. Andy Bur... more >

public sector focus

View all News