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Union leaders call on PM to rule out “crippling” cuts to public services

Union leaders have today (Thursday) called on the Prime Minister and Chancellor to provide a “cast-iron assurance” they will not make further spending cuts to public services.

  • Joint letter from TUC and 18 unions warns Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng not to “sacrifice” frontline services for the super-rich 
  • Union heads ask for urgent meeting with the PM and Chancellor 
  • Slashing services “would be an act of national vandalism and a huge betrayal of the British people”, say unions 

In a joint, open letter to Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng, the union heads call for an urgent meeting amid fears of another “crippling round of austerity this November”. 

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: 

“Government departments have been tasked with finding efficiency savings. 

“After 12 years of cutting services to the bone, there is nothing left to trim. 

“When the Conservatives say efficiency savings this is usually code for cuts.” 

The letter – signed by 18 unions representing millions of public sector workers – reads: 

Dear Prime Minister and Chancellor 

Strong public services are vital to this nation’s health and the economy. 

But since 2010 our hospitals, schools, councils, care homes, prisons and other essential services have been forced to absorb savage spending cuts. And every month the bills they face are rising, leaving much less for actual services. 

This has come at a huge cost to communities across Britain. 

NHS waiting lists are at record highs, school buildings are literally crumbling before our eyes and local government is on its knees. 

Meanwhile, nurses, teachers, firefighters and millions of other key workers you clapped during the pandemic have seen their living standards decimated with over a decade of pay cuts and wage freezes. 

Every month dedicated staff are quitting in their droves – tired of being taken for granted and of services being run down. 

This cannot go on. 

Prime Minister – you promised in your leadership election campaign that there would be no reduction in public spending.  

But according to reports, another wave of crippling austerity could be on its way in November in order to fund tax cuts for the super-rich. 

This would be an act of national vandalism and a huge betrayal of the British people. 

We therefore seek an urgent meeting with you and the Chancellor, and a cast-iron assurance that you will not make further real-terms cuts to public services – now or in the future. 

Frontline services are already at breaking point. They must not be sacrificed to make the top 1% even richer. 

Unions will not sit by and allow the government to impoverish public services and the amazing staff who deliver them. 

We won’t allow the social fabric of this country to be destroyed. 

Yours sincerely 

Frances O’Grady – General Secretary, TUC 

Christina McAnea – General Secretary, UNISON 

Sharon Graham – General Secretary, Unite 

Gary Smith – General Secretary, GMB 

Kevin Courtney, Mary Bousted – Joint General Secretaries, NEU 

Patrick Roach – General Secretary, NASUWT 

Paul Whiteman - General Secretary, NAHT 

Gill Walton – Chief Executive, RCM 

Matt Wrack – General Secretary, FBU 

Mark Serwotka – General Secretary, PCS 

Mike Clancy – General Secretary, Prospect 

Dave Penman – General Secretary, FDA 

Steve Gillan – General Secretary, POA 

Iain Lawrence – General Secretary, NAPO 

Roy Rickhuss – General Secretary, Community 

Karen Middleton – Chief Executive, CSP 

Mark Sargeant – Acting General Secretary, RCP 

Annette Mansell-Green – Head of Employment Rights, BDA 

Paul Donaldson – General Secretary, HCSA 

Editors note

 About the TUC: The Trades Union Congress (TUC) exists to make the working world a better place for everyone. We bring together the 5.5 million working people who make up our 48 member unions. We support unions to grow and thrive, and we stand up for everyone who works for a living. 

Contacts:

TUC press office  
media@tuc.org.uk   
020 7467 1248  

 

Original article link: https://www.tuc.org.uk/news/union-leaders-call-pm-rule-out-crippling-cuts-public-services

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