GMB Experts in the World of Work
Join GMB today
 Follow @GMB_union


Sunday, September 24, 2017

For immediate release - Sunday 24 September 2017




Union calls on Prime Minister to act to end seven-yearpay cap that has pinched £9,000 from the average public sector worker since 2010.


GMB, the union for public sector workers, has called on Prime Minister Theresa May to act ahead of Conservative Party Conference to end the pinch on public sector pay.


The union said deferring the decision to the Budget Statement on 22 November was "too long to wait."


Addressing the Labour Conference in Brighton, GMB National Secretary for Public Services Rehana Azam said the Prime Minister must announce an end to the pay cap.


GMB has been leading the campaign to end the pinch on public sector pay, which has already seen the average public sector worker lose £9,000 in below inflation pay rises since 2010 [1].


Earlier this month the Government, in a said prison officers will get a 1.7% rise while police will get a 1% pay rise plus a 1% bonus unconsolidated for the year [2].


But the money will come from existing departmental budgets – rather than new central government funding – meaningcash-strapped public services will be hit even harder.


It is rumoured - but remains unconfirmed - that the pay cap in 2019/20 for those pay arrangements governed by pay review bodies will end.


However, GMB analysis shows the majority of public sector workers – 55 per cent - including council workers, front-lineschool and police support staff, and civil servants are not covered by a pay review body [3].


GMB, along with other health unions, submitted a pay claim earlier this month for NHS staff from nurses and midwives to paramedics calling for a 3.9% pay rise plus £800 for a million NHS staff [4].


But the union said the pay pinch policy has always been a political choice - and that the Prime Minister could act to end the misery caused by a planned decade of real terms pay cuts that would see the average public sector worker lose £13,000 by 2020.


Addressing Labour Party Conference in Brighton this afternoon, Rehana Azam, GMB National Secretary for Public Services, said:


“The Prime Minister has made a token gesture to prison and police officers. She now claims that the pay freeze has been broken. Well, do not believe a word of it. 


"Asking them to accept yet more years of deflated pay. Telling them there is no new money so they have to pay for it themselves out of their depleted budgets. And you know what, over half of public sector workers are not even covered by independent pay review bodies. So nothing for them then either.


“Theresa May claims she is listening. Unless she announces a real pay rise for all public sector workers next week then we know she has not heard the message from the country. November is too long to wait.” 




Contact: GMB press office on 07958 156846 or at


*Spokespeople available for interview*




For more on the campaign -


[1] Figures taken from the GMB’s report End the Public Sector Pay Pinch, 08 March 2017:


[2] Paltry Public Sector Pay Rise Nothing But Smoke And Mirrors Says GMB


[3] GMB report, End the Public Sector Pay Pinch – Public Sector Workers and the Forgotten Three Million, published Wednesday 13 September 2017:


[4] Unions call for 3.9% pay rise plus £800 for a million NHS staff

Share this page