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Mistreatment causing one in five public sector workers to leave their professions, TUC poll finds

HUNDREDS of thousands of disillusioned public-sector workers are actively considering quitting their jobs as a toxic mix of low pay, excessive workloads and lack of recognition pushes them to the brink, the TUC has revealed.

Its new study, published today, says that real-terms pay cuts are costing the key workers thousands of pounds per year, with one in five now on the verge of leaving their job.

This year the government imposed a 3 per cent pay rise on NHS staff and a pay freeze for most other public-sector staff — both representing a real-terms pay cut.

Keys workers affected include paramedics, whose real-term annual salary has been eroded by £3,194 since 2010, and nurses, who have seen their pay cut by £2,469 in the same amount of time, the study shows.

Care workers have suffered a pay cut of £1,490, refuse collectors a decrease of £1,519, firefighters are living on £2,579 less, and teachers’ pay is down £2,003.

The TUC branded Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s promise of a “high-wage economy” farcical in the face of declining public-sector pay.

General secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Everyone deserves fair pay and dignity at work. 

“But too many key workers in the public sector are at breaking point because of a toxic mix of low pay, excessive workloads and a serious lack of recognition. 

“These are the nurses, care workers, and teachers that helped keep the country going through the pandemic. 

“After years of our key workers being underpaid and our public services underfunded, this pandemic has to be a turning point. 

“Enough is enough. Ministers must use the autumn Spending Review to end the public-sector pay freeze and give all public-sector workers a pay rise.”


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