Socialist Worker

Bosses are heaping more strain on workers

Issue No. 2366

Workers in Britain have suffered some of the deepest wage cuts across Europe under the Tories. Official figures show that wages fell by 5.5 percent in Britain since autumn 2010.

Greece and the Netherlands are the only two countries with bigger wage drops. 

The Tories now want us to believe that their austerity has brought about an economic recovery. But there is no recovery for working class people. 

Wages and benefits are being squeezed while the cost of living soars.

Bosses unveiled yet more price rises this week. Energy firms plan to raise prices again—after raising them by an average of £100 per household every year for the last three years.

It’s not because the energy firms are struggling. Britain’s biggest six energy firms made £3.3 billion over the last three years.

Meanwhile next year’s rail fares are set to be a whopping 40 percent higher than they were in January 2008 according to the TUC.

It will be the sixth time in seven years that fare increases have outstripped wage rises.

And all the while the cost of food and other essentials continues to rise. Rents in Britain soared to their highest ever recorded level this year.

Housing

The RPI rate of inflation, which takes into account things such as housing costs, was 3.1 percent in July.

Yet the Tories and the bosses want us to swallow wage freezes or cuts and attacks on our benefits.

A few other things are on the rise too.  Food bank requests more than doubled in the first week of the summer holidays. Rent arrears are going up as well.

More than half of people in Britain struggle to pay their bills according to a recent survey by the Money Advice Service. The figure was 35 percent in 2006.

And even more people are getting into debt.

The number of temporary jobs is rising too. Nearly half of the total rise in employment between December 2010 and December 2012 was made up of temporary work.

This means more stress and uncertainty for workers—and more “flexibility” for the bosses.

This is the reality of the “recovery” the Tories crow about. 

The figures give the lie to the Tory claim that their austerity is anything to do with helping ordinary people or that it is necessary. Their idea of a recovery is bosses finding it easier to make even bigger profits.

That’s why we need to march on the Tory party conference on Sunday 29 September and get this rich rabble out.


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What We Think
Tue 13 Aug 2013, 16:11 BST
Issue No. 2366
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