Tory Ministers have been falling over themselves to clap our key workers when the cameras are rolling but the government has betrayed them with today’s Spending Review. Rishi Sunak’s public sector pay freeze will force firefighters, teachers, NHS staff and other key workers to worry about money just before Christmas. That’s cruel even by Tory standards.
Not only is this pay freeze deeply unjust, it’s also economically idiotic. Ten years of austerity have shown that taking money out of the economy only prologues a recession and, yet, that is exactly what the government has done once again.
In response to this pay freeze, workers will naturally tighten their belts and spend less money in shops, restaurants and other businesses. As a result, more businesses will see their incomes reduce and may well be forced to lay off staff. This will deepen any recession and could lead to a spiral of unemployment as businesses continue to struggle.
To give our economy a boost, the government should be enabling people to spend but, by hitting workers in their pockets, Rishi Sunak is choking any chance of recovery.