REVEALED: How Unison pay-saboteurs are raising public sector costs

Dave Prentis…..berk? Fat cat? Or both?

Unison General Secretary Dave Prentis gets paid £127,500 a year to look after his members. With trade unionists facing job cuts, he is still encouraging hourly-rate workers to strike for more money….and thus damning other members to unemployment.

I’m relieved to see that Neil O’Brien has finally done a  proper survey of public sector wage increases. His think-tank Policy Exchange this morning issued a report which said the gap – or pay premium – between what a typical public sector worker earns above their equivalent in the private sector has increased by 4% to 16.5% over the past two years for salaried workers. But it also points out that this has risen by 35% for workers paid by the hour, despite efforts by the government to reduce the public wage bill.

During the same time period surveyed, real pay fell for the bottom 30% of private sector workers.

I say I’m relieved, because last February Eric too-much-cheese-with-my Pickles told us all that City Hall CEO salaries had gone up 78%. This turned out to be not just bollocks, but incompetence: Pickles (or more likely, his staff) had used the FTSE 250 companies average. Which is, of course, the other side.

But the intriguing point to note here is the hourly rate I’ve italicised above. For that screams The Workers upping the ante through their Trade Union protectors. And funnily enough, within minutes of the report’s release, the the TUC said the report was aimed at creating divisions between public and private sector workers. Slight misuse of the word ‘create’ there, but never mind. Top bollocks machine at the TUC Brendan Barber said both sectors were facing pay freezes, job losses and pension devaluations. “The government’s policies of deep, rapid cuts are doing grave damage to the whole economy, and ordinary workers in every kind of job are suffering the longest decline in living standards for decades.”

Hang on Bren old top: if you’re getting greedy pay rises for your members, how would that not be doing grave damage to the economy? Perhaps we better ask the Unison General Secretary Dave Prentis.

Mr Prentispart has this to say on the latest update of Unison’s website: ‘This week marks the first anniversary of the Con-Dem coalition; one year of broken promises, shattered lives, and our economy still on life support. And worse lies ahead, with hundreds of thousands of public sector jobs to go. Is this government intent on breaking Britain? Unless the Tory-led coalition changes course, it is walking headlong into massive industrial action.’

Deconstructing this agitprop nonsense, the point seems to be that all the shattered lives and economic life-support had nothing to do with Gormless Frown; that hundreds of thousands of jobs will go, so let’s put our wages up in order to help our fellow workers; and if we don’t get more money with no job losses, then we’ll strike and thus massively improve the economic outlook still further.

It’s uncannily like listening to banker-logic this, isn’t it?  There’s no reasoning with it – and this man runs the biggest public sector Union in the country. So where better to look than Prentispart’s salary package?

Currently, Dave is earning £92,187, plus £35,249 in benefits; so just over 127 grand in total. Top rich Leftie Will Hutton recently delivered a commissioned report to the Coalition recommending that Britain’s biggest companies should be required to disclose how the pay of their top executives compares with that of their average employee.

Well, Prentispart’s Unison website states passionately that ‘Challenging discrimination and winning equality is at the heart of UNISON’s policies. Because we recognise that equality is an inseparable part of all trade union issues, we actively campaign for equality in the workplace and in the wider world.’ So let’s apply the Hutton principle to Dave!

The average male public sector worker on hourly rate gets almost exactly £12.35 for those sixty minutes of blood, toil, tears and sweat. That comes to £21,600 per annum….or almost exactly one-sixth of what  Dave Prentis hauls home. For female workers, it’s nearer to one-seventh. For part-time workers….you don’t want to know.

Responding to Hutton’s pay review formula, last year Simon Jenkins wrote in the Guardian, ‘[public sector] Bonuses are not about performance and incentive – just greed’. By and large, I would amen that….especially as far too many buggers in both sectors set their own targets – and then massage the books to show over-achievement.

But when it comes to Colleague Prentispart, what would he be bonused on exactly – how high the pay increases were he garnered for his subs-paying slaves members? If so, he is just as bad as the fattest, greediest, asset-stripping arsehole in the City.

Which is very likely. Both bankers and union leaders are a privileged group in our culture. The Unions need reining in some more, and the bankers need cutting down to a more acceptable size in terms of both company reach and salary. The Coalition bottled out on the banker issue: what will it now do about the Sparts, we ask ourselves?