Redundancy payments curb shows “antipathy” towards civil service

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Redundancy payments curb shows government “antipathy” towards civil service

Plans to further curb redundancy payments in the civil service will be seen by many as “a declaration of war”, Prospect has warned, ahead of an expected “tsunami” of job cuts.



The union, which represents 30,000 civil service specialists, was responding to a report in The Times that payments would be cut across the public sector in an attempt to save hundreds of millions of pounds. A forthcoming consultation paper will feature a proposal to reduce civil service voluntary redundancy payments from 21 months’ to 15 months’ pay.

Garry Graham, Prospect deputy general secretary, said: “In 2010 Francis Maude, then Cabinet Office minister, described the deal reached with Prospect and four other unions on civil service redundancy payments as not only fair but also ‘affordable and sustainable’.

“What has changed?” he asked, pointing out that the agreement was struck at height of the financial crisis.

He added: “Civil servants are now 20% worse off than they were in 2010 – if they are fortunate enough to still be in a job. They face a tsunami of job cuts, despite the civil service being the smallest it has been since 1939. For many this will feel like a declaration of war.

“How this sort of antipathy towards the government’s own staff will motivate them to work even harder to find efficiency savings is a mystery.”

Prospect has also questioned a Treasury statement that the redundancy cuts were intended to “rein in excess...at the top end of public services”, arguing that the new VR terms would see middle and lower ranking workers in the civil service hit hardest.

For further information contact:
Garry Graham
020 7902 6678 (w)
07713 511703 (m)
garry.graham@prospect.org.uk
 
Andrew Child
020 7902 6681 (w)
07770 304480 (m)
andrew.child@prospect.org.uk