Union leaders last week met chancellor Alistair Darling and other government ministers over public sector pay.
The TUC delegation included Dave Prentis of Unison, TUC general secretary Brendan Barber, Steve Sinnott of the NUT, Mark Serwotka of the PCS, Paul Noon of Prospect, Lesley Mercer of the CSP, Brian Strutton of the GMB and Patrick Roach of the NASUWT.
While it was good that unions were united in putting pressure on the government there are dangers in their approach.
The TUC statement after the meeting said, “Unions are prepared to consider long term deals where appropriate, but a rigid centrally imposed policy that ignores recommendations from independent review bodies will not be acceptable.”
Long term deals are a major problem.
And as teachers are discovering, review body recommendations, even when carried out, are no guarantee of avoiding below inflation pay deals.