Ministers revive plan to end six-figure golden goodbyes to public sector workers

Posted On: 
10th April 2019

Ministers are set to revive their long-standing plan to scrap six-figure golden goodbyes to public sector employees who leave their jobs.

Liz Truss said the six-figure pay-outs were 'clearly wrong'
PA Images

The Treasury said that a cap of £95,000 per worker will be introduced to rein in the pay-offs, which in 2016-17 cost the public purse £1.2bn.

More than 1,600 highly-paid workers received payments of £100,000-plus during that period, at a cost of £198m, while local government officials in England received £98m in six-figure payments.

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The plans to limit the awards were first introduced under David Cameron’s government in 2015, but have faced fierce opposition from trade unions.

The Government legislated for a cap in the Enterprise Act of 2016, but extra regulations are needed to bring the changes into force.

A consultation into the proposals, which is to be launched today, outlines that the UK civil service, local government, police forces, schools and the NHS will be included in the first round of implementation.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Liz Truss, said: “It is clearly wrong when people leave public sector roles with massive payoffs. It incenses the public when they see their hard-earned money used badly like this.

“That’s why we are capping exit payments to stop unacceptably large pay-outs for senior managers.”

But Dave Penman, general secretary of the FDA union, which represents senior civil servants, said: "Not satisfied with previous cuts to the pay, pensions and redundancy arrangements of public servants, the Government is now imposing a further attack on redundancy terms.

"It is completely disingenuous of Liz Truss, the Chief Secretary of the Treasury, to dress this up as a way to 'stop large pay-outs for senior managers'. As she knows all too well, when the Conservatives first mooted this arbitrary cap in 2015, it included protection for those earning less than £27,000 a year.

"Not only has this protection been abandoned, but it demonstrates that their blunt approach to capping redundancy payments will hurt teachers, police officers, firefighters, doctors, paramedics and other individuals serving the public.

"It is disappointing that a government minister - who day in, day out witnesses the incredible job that public servants do for her Government - would use the dog-whistle tactics of demonising senior managers to hide the true impact of her policy."