Sinn Féin back public sector pay campaign

Sinn Féin will vigorously support a major new trade union campaign against the public sector pay gap SF MLA Raymond McCartney has said.

The  Foyle MLA was speaking as the Irish Congress of Trade Unions launched the ‘Better Work, Better Lives’ campaign involving 30 trade unions demanding an end to the 1% cap.

“Sinn Féin fully recognise the detrimental impact of the Tory Pay Cap on public sector staff,” he commented.

“It is our firm position that the pay cap should be scrapped and that the Tory Government should reverse its cuts to the North’s block grant to ensure we can provide proper public services and proper public sector wages.

“Since the Tories imposed austerity in 2010 some £1 billion has been lost in real terms from the Executive’s budget for day-to-day spending. A further 3% cut is planned over the next two years. Austerity has caused unnecessary hardship, contributed to falling real wages, and consolidated inequality. The British Chancellor’s statement tomorrow provides an opportunity to abandon the failed ideology of austerity in favour of an economic stimulus.

“Sinn Féin regularly and routinely engage with the trade union movement so we greatly welcome this campaign and will vigorously support it.

“It is vital that as many voices as possible within wider civic society oppose the Tory austerity agenda which is an ideologically driven assault on frontline public services, workers and the most vulnerable in society.”