Public sector workers 'to receive £2 billion pay rise' in Theresa May's last act as Prime Minister

Posted On: 
19th July 2019

Public sector workers are to receive a £2billion pay rise in one of Theresa May's last acts as Prime Minister, it has emerged.

Teachers are among those who will see their pay go up.
PA Images

Around two million police officers, teachers, NHS staff and members of the Armed Forces will see their pay go up under the move, The Times reported..

However, the cash will need to be found from existing Whitehall budgets, meaning savings will be required elsewhere to pay for it.

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The Prime Minister is expected to confirm the measure next week, shortly before she leaves Number 10 for the last time on Wednesday.

According to The Times, police officers will receive a 2.5% rise, while soldiers will see their pay go up by 2.9%.

Teachers and other school staff are in line for a 2.75% hike, dentists and NHS consultants will get a 2.5% rise and senior civil servants' salaries will go up by 2%.

It will be the highest public sector rise in six years, and comes at the end of almost a decade of pay restraint as the Government tried to bring down the deficit.

It is the latest in a string of Downing Street announcements aimed at establishing a legacy for Mrs May after three years as Prime Minister.

Jonathan Cribb, a senior research economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, told The Times: "These public sector pay rises are higher than last year’s and considerably higher than the 1 per cent for many years before that.

"It is the highest nominal pay increase since the coalition. But these increases are still slower than pay rises that are happening on average in the private sector. With the partial exception of schools, there seems to be no new money to fund these pay rises, meaning savings will have to be made elsewhere."

And John McDonnell, Labour's shadow Chancellor, called it an “insulting pay offer” which will “push public sector workers further behind”.

He said: "After years of holding back the pay of our dedicated public sector workers, it is shameful for the government to pay for ending the public sector pay cap with more cuts."

Earlier this month, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said Boris Johnson would "show some love" to the public sector if he becomes Prime Minister by increasing their pay.

But Mr Johnson quickly distanced himself from the remarks.