90 days from today is Thu, 19 September 2024

Avon & Somerset Police Federation

Police officers under pay freeze react with mixture of astonishment and anger to the 2.7% MP pay rise

2 March 2022

Police officers – subject to a brutal Government pay freeze since 2020 – have reacted with a mixture of astonishment and anger to the news that MPs are being granted a 2.7% pay rise.

All MPs will get a £2,212 pay hike on 1 April, seeing an MP's basic salary go up to £84,144 a year.

Over the past 10 years due to ‘austerity’ based pay freezes and subsequent below inflation pay rises, police officer pay has fallen in real terms by 20% behind the cost of living.

Unlike nurses and firefighters, police officers were given no pay rise in 2021 with the public cost of the Covid-19 pandemic blamed by the Treasury.

Now household bills are rising sharply and National Insurance is going up in April – the same week MPs will receive their rise.

Officers have reacted to the news with fury – especially as the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, which sets MP salaries, said the politicians should be paid fairly for the responsibilities they carried, which ‘dramatically increased’ during the pandemic.

Mark Loker, Chair of Avon and Somerset Police Federation, said: “Home Secretary Priti Patel in 2020 promised a better deal for police officers.

“She said: ‘The police and the families that stand behind them deserve special recognition,’ ‘Their bravery and sacrifices are what keep us and our loved ones safe.’

“How has that recognition been shown? Nothing less than a kick in the teeth and our members deserve so much more.

“The Chair of IPSA said yesterday: ‘It is right that MPs are paid fairly for the responsibility and the unseen work they do helping their constituents, which dramatically increased last year.’ How about the 130,000 police officers who throughout the Pandemic took the risks these MPs would and could not?

“How about the seen and unseen work that dramatically increased for our members last year? How about the Officers who were not supported for early vaccination? How about the Officers who have been coughed on, spat at and people deliberately attempting to infect them with Covid?

“Our members are at the forefront of the unseen work of Parliament and my members bravery is exceptional. The pandemic has not stopped them confronting the vilest individuals. 101 police officers are assaulted every day. We should honour their courage, not rub our noses in the dirt.”

In May 2021 the Police Federation withdrew from the Police Remuneration Review Body (PRRB) after recommendations from the body were once again disregarded by the Government, seeing officers with no uplift in pay despite the efforts and challenges faced during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mark added: “It is the ultimate betrayal and ultimate insult that after all the diatribe and false plaudits, any praise by the Home Secretary for our members can only ever now be considered as lies when the PRRB was directed by the Home Secretary on what it can consider and, even then, despite their recommendations the Home Secretary is at liberty to ignore them.

“This year even the independent members of the review body commented about the restrictions the Home Secretary had placed on their independence. The Home Secretary currently presides over a shoddy, patently unfair sham of a process that is a continuing insult to officers. But I bet she accepts the 2.7% pay rise the IPSA has recommended for MPs.

“How about IPSA extending their favours to the 130,000 brave Officers and recommending 12% for Police Officers in 2023 – let’s put actions to your words Home Secretary.”