After seven years of brutal attacks on public services there are almost one million fewer public sector jobs.
The Office for National Statistics revealed last week that there are now only 5.4 million public sector workers.
Public sector workers now form a lower proportion of the workforce than at any time in the last 70 years—that’s since before the NHS was founded.
Workplaces rely on outsourced workers to fill the gaps. But for all the Tories’ talk about “efficiency”, the money spent on agency workers exceeds the amount it would need to give public sector workers a pay rise.
Key services decline and public sector workers are expected to work harder. Vacant posts aren’t being filled and people are expected to work longer hours and take on extra responsibility.
Some 164,000 jobs have been lost in education and children are being taught in classes of up to 46 pupils. The Tories have underfunded and understaffed our vital services for too long.
They say that they have lifted the pay cap—but it’s too little and only for some.
We need to use the Tories’ crisis to get them to cough up money to pay public sector workers.
We need a big fight to win back these jobs.
Properly funded services with properly funded jobs should be the rallying cry of everyone in the labour movement.