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BASW condemns government’s ‘hollow’ words in light of pay freeze

The Local Government Association (LGA) has announced that 1.6 million council workers across England, Wales and Northern Ireland will have their pay frozen for the third year in a row.

The LGA has told unions that more jobs and services would be cut unless the pay freeze continues.

Sarah Messenger, head of workforce at the Local Government Association, said:

“A combination of rising costs and shrinking local government funding means councils were left with little choice. Increasing pay would mean more job losses and cuts to the services people need”.

Hilton Dawson, BASW chief executive, comments:

“On a day when Michael Gove has publicly declared his alleged admiration for social workers for “the vital and under-appreciated work” they do, this decision demonstrates just how hollow his warm words are.

“This pay freeze will not provide any real savings. Social workers who can’t make ends meet are simply going to work for agencies, who offer better rates of pay and re-charge this to local authorities who have to provide vital services.

“Mr Gove might spare us the pieties about social workers and offer his cabinet colleagues some lessons in basic good housekeeping and their responsibilities to the public.

“Social workers are amongst the finest public servants in the country, and it is outrageous that they are being de-valued in this mean spirited way”.