Union leaders say workers are suffering the “longest and hardest” pressure on their wages in modern history and are pressing for more government support
Tens of thousands of people will join a protest march on Saturday urging the government to do more to deal with the cost of living crisis amid “staggering” evidence of the impact of rising inflation on families.
Union leaders, frontline workers and community organizations will be among the protesters in London demanding a “better deal” for workers struggling.
The TUC, which organizes the event, said workers were suffering the “longest and harshest” pressure on their incomes in modern history.
His research suggests workers have lost almost £20,000 since 2008 because wages have not kept pace with inflation.
The TUC said it was the biggest “real wage drop” since 1830, adding that the “wage collapse” showed little sign of slowing down.
General Secretary Frances O’Grady said it was “heartbreaking” to hear workers fighting without a safety net to fall back on.
She said the Conservatives are now the “party of wage cuts” and accused the government of turning its back on those who had made such “extraordinary sacrifices” by continuing to work during the Covid-19 pandemic.
She said she heard a harrowing story of children holding back part of their school lunch to take home for their dinner.
“Prices are skyrocketing, but boardroom bonuses are up again,” said Ms. O’Grady. “Anyone who works for a living deserves to earn a decent living, but workers in the UK are suffering the longest and hardest on their wages in modern history.”
She added: “If wages don’t rise across the economy, we will reel from crisis to crisis.
“This cost-of-living emergency did not come out of the blue. It is the result of more than a decade of wage freezes.”
Ms O’Grady accused the Prime Minister of “cynically abandoning” his commitment to a high-wage economy.
She said he and other ministers were “treating workers like Oliver Twist, telling them not to dare ask for a decent raise”.
“The last thing we need right now is for wages to be kept low,” added Ms O’Grady.
“We cannot be a country where nurses have to use blackboards to make ends meet.”
The Secretary-General of the Royal College of Nursing, Pat Cullen, said: “The failure of ministers to give nursing a fair wage – including more than a decade of real wage cuts – is having a devastating impact on their own well-being and the security of care for their patients.
“The cost of living crisis has exacerbated this, with too many caregivers struggling to feed their families or fuel their cars.”
Unite leader Sharon Graham said: “Wage moderation? How about urging restraint on Britain’s multimillionaire bosses? In the final year of the pandemic, top UK CEOs increased their own wages by an average of 29% to £2.6million.
“Don’t hear anyone in the media saying they’re holding the country for ransom.”
Green Party vice-leader Carla Denyer said: “We fully support the TUC’s call for a wage increase, with increases in the public sector funded by the Treasury.
“The livelihood crisis is actually an income crisis. It is important that wages keep pace with inflation this year.
“We also need to see a reversal of the real wage losses that took place during the Tory austerity era.”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/tens-thousands-protest-demanding-government-27267108 Tens of thousands are demonstrating, demanding the government do more to address the cost of living crisis