George Osborne has condemned the country to decades of hardship and the people to unnecessary wholesale unemployment, with his “ideologically driven, no hope, no ideas, cuts review” warned UNISON, the UK’s largest public service union. The government has failed to consider that there is a fairer alternative.
The union says that the 500,000 public sector job cuts will prove a false economy and will cost the private sector a further 425,000 jobs. They could cost the Treasury around £4.6bn in lost tax revenue and £6.1bn in increased benefit payments – adding £10.7bn a year to the annual deficit and almost entirely canceling out the apparent £12.5bn saving to the public sector pay-bill.
Tens of thousands of jobs have already been cut in local government, and it cannot afford to lose any more without hitting front-line services. The economy is also likely to be bitten by the negative impact of taking public sector workers’ spending power out of local economies and by the damage done to economic and social recovery from reduced public service provision.
Following the Chancellor’s Comprehensive Spending Review, Dave Prentis, General Secretary of UNISON, said: “For CSR read Cuts Strangle Recovery. The Tories’ ideologically driven, no hope, no ideas, cuts agenda is poisoning the country’s chances of recovery, infecting the public sector and costing 425,000 jobs in the private sector.
“The much-trailed cuts come as no great surprise, but the scale is a devastating blow to workers and their families whose jobs are in the firing line.
“The Chancellor has tunnel vision; there are realistic alternatives that will get the country back on its feet. And make no mistake, there is no way that frontline services will escape his heavy-handed tactics.“
For more information on alterntive ways of resolving the UK’s economic woes, check out UNISON’s alternative budget