I cant believe it’s not better

An excellent article over on ‘police oracle’ by Royston Martis (via @westyorkspolfed) on the proposed 1% pay rise for officers once the 2 year pay ‘freeze’ ends in August. The article can be found here.

Does a 1% increase sound good to you ? I suppose if you are unemployed or in desperate need of funds then it could be a blessing.

Hang on – Why would anyone be interested in the views of a selfish Police Sergeant, with massive wages and gold plated pension scheme ? I will attempt to bring a little reality to the public sector monster that the Government would have you think I am.

“Britain must not live beyond its means” Liam Fox MP 11/03/13 found here.

In the past couple of years (and before that to be fair) The cost of EVERYTHING has gone up. My food bill has gone up by a third since 2007 (source DEFRA) Fuel (Petrol has gone up arguably 50% in 5 years source here) Gas is up, Electricity – mine has gone up over 100% per month with same useage!, Even the ‘luxury’ items like an existing mobile phone contract, or internet connection have gone up. My landline went up again this year. Car insurance – which is compulsory – has also risen. I am struggling to think of a single household item that cost less today than a year previous.

I have a family to support. My other half works but makes around a third of my salary. We have children and a mortgage. we have two cars ( 2nd hand!) as we need to be in two places at once. My police wage actually looks good on paper – until you factor in the off takes – around £1000+ per month.
Of that around £390 is tax, and NI around £250. My pension (payments went up last year) accounts for around £350. How many of you pay that a month for your pensions?
That’s a months rent, or a mortgage payment. It’s a years car insurance each month. It’s the price of finance on a luxury car. Or the payment on a £20000 loan.

And still to come this year – another pension rise – the last one was about £60 per month which means I will be paying More in pension contributions than I pay income tax

I haven’t even mentioned that my pay scale increments have been frozen too. I have had an undisputed pay cut, not a freeze.

If (when) the new pension changes for police come in 2015 I will have to work an extra 5 years, pay more, and receive less at the end.
But there are lots of people worse off I hear you say. This is true. But like everyone else I am thinking of my own family right now.

So what does 1% look like to me?
£30 a month before tax ( gross in more ways than one)- that’s an insult.

And Mr Fox wants more cuts, not less.
I for one am struggling to live within my means. There is no more slack to give. The pot is empty. Interestingly I found out through that article that 80% of government dept budgets are ‘ringfenced’ leaving police and armed forces to take the brunt (note they cannot strike)

Government would have you believe that there is no choice and these cuts have to be made. Not true, they are a conscious choice. They did it in the 80’s and 90’s out of ideology.

I look forward to the day when I can stack shelves part time when I pack it in. The way we are going that day might be sooner than you think.

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