TUC on ONS public/private sector pay figures

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date: 27 March 2012

embargo: For immediate release

Commenting on the figures on public and private sector pay published today (Tuesday) by the Office for National Statistics, TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said:

'The ONS analysis takes a serious look at the reasons behind the gap between pay in the public and private sectors - identifying higher skill levels and the age of the public sector workforce for example. These factors are often overlooked by those who would like to drive down public sector pay.

'The analysis would be more accurate however if all the bonuses paid out to private sector employees - especially the sky-high payouts made to top bankers in the first three months of the year - were included.

'The figures show that graduates tend to earn more in the private sector, whereas people with lower skill levels will have slightly higher salaries if they work in the public sector. Should the government's ill-thought out proposals on local pay begin to take shape, the real losers would be the thousands of home helps, bin men and dinner ladies - workers who are already low paid - and the communities in which they live.

'By setting pay nationally across the public sector, hundreds of thousands of lower-paid workers - many of them women - have been able to enjoy decent rates of pay. The introduction of local pay would change this, condemning them to a future of permanent poverty, and where pay inequality becomes the norm as the gender gap widens to mirror the huge salary divide between men and women in the private sector.'

NOTES TO EDITORS:

- All TUC press releases can be found at www.tuc.org.uk

Contacts:

Media enquiries:
Liz Chinchen T: 020 7467 1248 M: 07778 158175 E: [email protected]
Rob Holdsworth T: 020 7467 1372 M: 07717 531150 E: [email protected]
Elly Gibson T: 020 7467 1337 M: 07900 910624 E: [email protected]

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