13 May 2020
PFEW National Chair John Apter warns government that a pay freeze would be a slap in the face for police officers.
"As a rule, I don’t comment on leaked stories in the media, but this morning it was reported that the Government are looking at how to recover from the financial impact of the Covid crisis which includes a pay freeze for the public sector.
"Now this is a leaked report so not confirmed but this is too important to ignore.
"During the last recession, public sector workers were subjected to a pay freeze and then a pay cap for a number of years. This resulted in an 18% real-terms pay cut for hard working police officers – a poor reward for their dedication and service. It also had a crippling effect on many public sector workers.
"The current global crisis around Covid-19, which has affected so many, it has been the public sector who have stepped up to save lives, protect the public and keep the country moving. Often putting themselves at risk and making personal sacrifices.
"Police officers, doctors, nurses, paramedics, prison officers, teachers, firefighters and many, many more have been the glue which has held us together in this crisis. If there is any consideration in financially punishing our public sector workers, then I urge a rethink.
"Chancellor Rishi Sunak and thousands of others have clapped for our key workers every Thursday. To even consider freezing the pay of our essential public sector workers to help the financial recovery would be morally bankrupt and would be a deep and damaging betrayal.
"I completely understand the enormous financial pressures that the government will be under as a result of the crisis, and there will be those who say that we must all take a share of the pain. But to put a pay freeze on the very people who have helped this country through this crisis would be hypocritical and grossly offensive."