Austerity puts public workers’ wages below private sector

Workers in public sector received hourly earnings of 0.6% less than their private counterparts, for first time since 2008 financial crash

Public sector workers’ pay has dipped below that of their private sector counterparts for the first time since the financial crash, Treasury figures obtained by the GMB union reveal.

The disparity, after seven years of austerity and cuts to public spending, will pile pressure on the chancellor, Philip Hammond, to abandon the public sector pay cap in next month’s budget. The analysis of hourly earnings shows that last year public sector workers were paid 0.6% less than private sector colleagues in similar jobs. By comparison, they enjoyed a premium of 3.1% compared with the private sector in 2005, rising to 5.8% in 2010.

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