Local Government employers have announced a pay freeze for the coming financial year for 1.4 million Councilworkers. The tough decision will be a great help in keeping Council Tax bills down. But the unions – Unison, GMB and Unite – aren't happy. They point out that inflation has just gone up to 2.9% according to the Consumer Price Index and also that the decision goes further than Shadow Chancellor George Osborne's proposed public sector pay freeze – as he would have exempted low paid workers. They also complain there had been no negotiation.
Heather Wakefield of Unison told the Local Government Chronicle that the unions "had sent the employers side out of the room while they considered their next steps." But will they want to go on strike just before a General Election?
The stance from the employers is to be applauded. Although my view is that pay should be decided locally.