Commenting on the latest employment figures published by the ONS today (Tuesday), which show payroll employees up 120,000 on pre-pandemic levels but headline employment including self-employment still down 660,000, TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:
“If the government wants a high wage economy there’s still a very long way to go. Wages grew more slowly in August than July. And real wages are only £2.50 a week higher than their peak before the financial crisis – 13 years ago.
“Vacancies in key sectors like logistics and food processing are the result of years of bad employment practices coming home to roost.
“If we want to end this supply chain chaos and deliver higher wages, the government must give unions more power to negotiate better pay and conditions. Working people deserve a decent standard of living.
“With 1.3 million people still on furlough when the scheme ended last month, we can’t be complacent. Ministers still need a plan to protect jobs and living standards, including a permanent short-time working scheme to guard against shocks to our economy – like the energy crisis threatening to shut down factories.”
- Today’s labour market statistics are available at: www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/uklabourmarket/october2021
- Around 1.3 million people were still furloughed at the end of August: www.gov.uk/government/news/quarter-of-million-left-furlough-in-august-as-redundancies-hit-seven-year-low
- Real pay figures are calculated using the CPI rather than the official figures that use CPIH.
- The Trades Union Congress (TUC) exists to make the working world a better place for everyone. We bring together the 5.5 million working people who make up our 48 member unions. We support unions to grow and thrive, and we stand up for everyone who works for a living.
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