Socialist Worker

40 percent cuts must not go unchallenged

Issue No. 2209

The Tories are threatening to cut 40 percent of the public sector as they slash and burn their way through our services.

Part of this is scare tactics to shock people with the scale of the cuts. But there should be no doubt that the attack is real.

On top of the £12 billion cuts already being implemented, the government added £1.5 billion this week, and it simply announced an initial £220 million to come out of local government.

That will directly affect services for the poorest.

In a further onslaught, the odious Tory education secretary Michael Gove has scrapped 715 school building programmes.

Gove said the building scheme was “bureaucratic and wasteful” and it was not value for money for the taxpayer.

In reality this will mean thousands of pupils being taught in decaying buildings and temporary classrooms.


And there is likely to be a massive cull of teaching assistants. To add insult to injury, the government has set about attacking the rights of those it intends to sack.

They want to slash the Civil Service Compensation Scheme claiming that civil service workers receive an average of £60,000 redundancy.

But this covers up the fact that the figures include a small number of top civil servants who receive high pay outs—and aren’t even in the scheme the government is attacking!

A part-time woman worker in the Revenue & Customs department who had worked for the civil service for 25 years would get just £14,000 if she was made redundant.

Workers on the lowest grade who have given an average seven years’ service to the department will get just £8,000.

Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the PCS union, said, “The court has ruled that detrimental changes to our members’ terms and conditions cannot be made without their agreement.

“This would be an outrageous abuse by the government, simply because it failed to get the result it wanted in the high court.

“We are determined to resist any attempt by the government to ride roughshod over our members’ rights.”

The number of people classed as homeless in Britain could more than double because of benefit cuts.

The National Housing Federation predicts that impending cuts to housing benefit will put a further 200,000 people at grave risk of homelessness.

Currently 140,000 people are classified as homeless in Britain.

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