Information obtained by the Prospect union reveals that ministers have set a target for civil service job losses of 40,000 a year for the next two years, 2011-12 and 2012-13.
Dai Hudd, Prospect Deputy General Secretary, said: “The financial cost of redundancies on this scale is shocking, but the human cost will be terrible.
“Scapegoating public servants who have done nothing to bring about the financial deficit shows that the government is tackling the symptoms of the deficit but not its cause.
“Losing 80,000 jobs in this way will kill the civil service as a career for thousands of people and drive anyone with marketable skills into the private sector, where they can earn substantially more and be treated with respect by their employer.”
The Chancellor has already targeted all public servants with a two-year pay freeze and a ban on recruitment. In today’s CSR statement, George Osborne also confirmed that he would extract another £1.8 billion from public servants in extra pension contributions, costing all public servants a further 3% of pay.
“This means that public servants, who are already suffering a two-year real terms pay cut, will now see an actual pay cut of a further 3%.
“That is far in excess of what the private sector has experienced, where only one third of employers declared a pay freeze that in almost all cases came to an end after just 12 months.”
Hudd warned that any move to impose higher pension contributions would not be acceptable and would provoke an angry response from members. “It looks as though this government is determined to drive down the living standards of public servants in a way that is unparalleled outside wartime.
“A civil service that used to pride itself on its employment standards is now strongly perceived by its employees to have abandoned those values.”