SDLP Leader calls for parties to prioritise public sector pay crisis

colum eastwood Industrial action Public services

SDLP Leader Colum Eastwood MP has urged the parties with the power to form an Executive to prioritise the public sector pay crisis which will destabilise vital public services if left unaddressed.

The Foyle MP was speaking ahead of strike action due to be taken by Northern Ireland Civil Service staff this week.

Colum Eastwood MP said:

“This week the Northern Ireland Civil Service and our schools will come to a screeching halt as a direct result of decades of wage injustice. The pay crisis in our public sector is not new but it has been made much more acute because of soaring inflation and the punishing budgetary position coming from London.

“The political strategy to hold Stormont down in an attempt to extract further concessions from the European Commission and the British Government has now run its road. The deal is done. There is nothing left to win and there is no one left to listen. Continuing to use the lives of ordinary people as political leverage is not only pointless, it is cruel.

“The current pay award is worse than derisory, it devalues the people working to keep our society going particularly in circumstances when politics is failing so badly. Addressing that injustice must be a priority for political parties and for the British Government. The SDLP is ready to play our part.”

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