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The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain

Pay rises

by New Worker correspondent

READERS will rejoice that hard-working public servants who are forced to work in a crumbling 19th building beside a polluted river, have won a well-deserved, inflation-busting pay rise of 3.1 per cent or £2,500. These deserving workers are Members of Parliament, who did not have to take to the picket lines, received it from the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA). This figure compares with the present inflation rate of 1.8 per cent. Hopefully those struggling on £79,468 will find their £81,932 helpful.

It was announced earlier in the week that MPs’ staff will also see a pay boost to bring their salaries in line with comparable roles outside the Commons.

In addition, MPs get a budget increase of 13.1 per cent (£21,900) for staff in based in London and 13.9 per cent (£21,600) for staff outside the capital, which means those who do the actual work of MPs will get something.

This rise was defended by the IPSA’s interim Chair, who said: “There was often high staff turnover, with salary levels below comparable roles elsewhere, based on independent benchmarked evidence. In many MPs’ offices, relatively little time or money was spent on staff training, well-being and development.” So all will be well now.

A more deserving pay victory has been achieved by transport union RMT on behalf of low-paid cleaners on Britain’s railways. As a result of a new deal, all staff employed as cleaners on contracts cleaning Network Rail-managed stations and estates will be paid the real living wage from the 1st of April. In London staff will be guaranteed a minimum of £10.75 per hour whilst those beyond the M25 will earn no less that £9.30 per hour.

RMT General Secretary Mike Cash said: “This is a deal that represents a significant victory for RMT and its members in the battle to eliminate low pay on the rail network. It sets a floor for the rest of the industry and will be a springboard to pushing ahead with our campaigning with the train operators and others in the rail sector.”

He also paid tribute to Ian Mearns MP “from our parliamentary group and most of all our members who have got themselves organised and proved the point that when RMT is on the case no one gets left behind. This is a massive shot in the arm and we are sending a signal to the remaining cheapskate employers in our industry that we are coming for you.”