The system behind officers’ pay rises is at risk of falling into disrepute due to apparent government interference, the Police Federation has warned.
Steve White, chairman, Police Federation of England and Wales, said a letter sent by a senior Treasury minister to all public sector pay review bodies seems to demonstrate the government has already determined which officers will get pay rises and which will not, before the review process has even started.
The comments come after the letter from Greg Hands, chief secretary to the Treasury – effectively Chancellor George Osborne’s deputy – stated that the government expected pay rises, capped at one per cent, to be allocated in a ‘targeted’ way to ‘support the delivery of public services and to address recruitment and retention pressures’.
It added: ‘This may mean that some workers could receive more than 1% while others could receive less; there should not be an expectation that every worker will receive a 1% award.’
Steve White, chairman, Police Federation of England and Wales, said: “From this letter, it appears that the government has made up its mind on how it will allocate public sector pay rises before any of the pay review bodies have even begun their work. This would make a mockery of the whole pay review body system.
“Unless ministers actually support and uphold its independence, the system risks rapidly falling into disrepute.
“In the absence of industrial rights, the government must listen to the views of the police service and seriously consider its evidence before making any decisions on future police pay. The service is creaking at the seams while private sector pay is accelerating; it is imperative to properly protect and reward our most precious resource – our people.”
• The full letter is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/45590