30th Nov, 2020

Government must find money for scrapping public sector pay cap, says police chief

THE government’s promise of lifting the cap on police pay will lead to job losses unless ministers fully fund the rise, warns the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC).

David Jamieson has welcomed reports of the public sector pay cap being lifted, describing it as long overdue.

But the PCC has also warned unless it is fully funded by government it will be a ‘hollow gesture’ and will lead to inevitable job losses.

Every 1 per cent pay increase, above planned increases, will cost West Midlands Police £4million, equivalent to 80 police officer posts, he says.

Mr Jamieson said: “I welcome reports that the government will be lifting the public sector pay cap. It is an long overdue victory for common sense and decency.

“The government must ensure that staff, as well as officers, receive the pay increase. In addition, the government must provide resources for Police and Crime Commissioners to fund the pay increases, so pay increases for some are not job losses for others.

“If the government do not put aside money to fund the pay increase, PCCs will be left with large bills and have no other option other than to reduce officer and staff numbers.

“The government must act quickly to ensure that its pay cap lifting is not a hollow gesture.

“Police officers and staff work round the clock to keep us safe and their income has been under attack for too long. It would be a kick in the teeth if after this victory the government doesn’t put funding in place and job losses are inadvertently caused.

“This pay increase is right and fair, but needs to be fully funded by the government too.

“The government must make good on their obligations and fully fund this. If not then their cuts will, once again, inevitably lead to job losses.”

West Midlands Police has lost £145 million since 2010 and is still facing cuts, he added.

The force received £6 million less in government funding this year than the year before and is facing cost pressures of at least £18 million on top of that without the lifting of the pay cap, said Mr Jamieson.

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