18 August 2021
Derbyshire Police Federation chair Tony Wetton has reacted with anger after new figures revealed a large annual hike in UK average pay of 7.4 per cent just weeks after police officers were told their pay was being frozen.
Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed growth in average total pay (including bonuses) was 8.8 per cent, while it was 7.4 per cent for regular pay (excluding bonuses) between April to June 2021.
ONS deputy statistician Jonathan Athow said the figures were evidence the “world of work continues to rebound robustly”.
But they have sparked fresh outrage among police officers who, according to the Police Federation, will be “fully justified in feeling further betrayed” by the Government’s zero per cent pay offer.
Tony said: “When the pay freeze was confirmed we described it as a kick in the teeth for our members and these figures just make it feel like a second blow.
“I have already written to Derbyshire’s MPs to try to convey the sense of anger and frustration felt by our members who have been badly let down by the Government.
“This will only add to those feelings of betrayal and I think adds huge weight to our calls for the Home Secretary to reconsider her decision on pay.
“Priti Patel tried to suggest public sector pay had to be held back to stop it outstripping the private sector so I would suggest she takes a look at these new figures and rethinks her position.
“Our members have endured 18 months of enormous pressure and stress while policing the pandemic only to face another real terms cut in their salaries.
“It is not good enough and it is not fair. Our members deserve genuine recognition for the sacrifices they have made.”
Tony’s views come as the Police Federation of England and Wales national vice-chair Ché Donald also responded to the ONS figures.
He said: “My colleagues will be dismayed by the news that some sectors are clearly receiving sky high wage rises while police officers receive nothing. They will be fully justified in feeling further betrayed by the unfairness of this news.
“Police officers who were on the frontline of the pandemic have already seen firefighters and local government workers in England given a 1.5 per cent increase.
“The ONS has now said the UK employment situation has been rebounding ‘robustly,’ and this new data will be viewed as further evidence all sectors were not treated equally by this government.
“It is yet another example of why we have lost confidence in a government which deliberately took full advantage of our unique status as public servants without the same employment rights as other members of society.”
The Police Federation has passed a motion of no confidence in the Home Secretary and withdrawn its support of the Police Remuneration Review Body in the wake of the pay freeze.