News story

Almost a million public sector workers handed a second year of inflation-busting pay rises

Almost a million public sector workers including doctors, teachers and soldiers will get a second-year of inflation-busting pay rises, the Chancellor announced today (22 July).

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After considering the findings of seven pay review bodies, Secretaries of State today confirm deals that mean:

  • An increase of 2.75% is equivalent to a £1,000 increase to average classroom teacher pay.
  • A soldier at Corporal level on average wages will see a 2.9% raise worth £995, while the starting salary for an officer will rise £769.
  • Hospital doctors will receive on average £1,500 more to their salary.
  • Police constables will earn up to £978 more this year because of this pay award.

Today’s announcements build on the largest pay rise in nearly a decade for over a million public sector workers last year, which included a multi-year deal for NHS nurses.

Prime Minister, Theresa May, said:

Whether it’s keeping us safe, saving lives or educating the next generation, our public sector workers deserve this pay rise in recognition of the brilliant job they do on a daily basis.

In 2017 we ended the public sector pay cap and I’m pleased that we can build on this today by giving almost a million of our dedicated public servants an above inflation salary increase.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, said:

Public sector workers deliver Britain’s world class public services and should be properly rewarded which is why I’m confirming a second year of above inflation pay rises today.

This is in recognition of the hard work of millions of people, including soldiers, teachers and doctors, and will help us recruit and retain the best staff.

We are able to afford these pay rises because our balanced approach means we have reduced our debt while investing in public services, including pay.

Each workforce is different and reaches its own settlement with the government. All six deals finalised today hand pay rises higher than the current 2% rate of inflation (CPI June 2019, ONS) for the 2019/20 financial year.

The pay rises will be backdated to the start of each work force’s financial year and mean a rise of 2.75% for school teachers, 2.5% for consultants and dentists, 2.5% for police officers, 2.9% per cent for personnel in the Armed Forces, at least 2.2% for Prison Officers and 2% for senior Civil Servants and senior military staff.

Pay for most public sector workers also rose above inflation last year after the Government ended the across-the-board 1% pay rise cap in September 2017. Earnings growth for public sector workers reached 3.6% last year.

Around a quarter of all public spending goes on pay. In 2018/19, the Government spent £190.95 billion on pay, up from £171.59 billion in 2015/16.

Independent pay review body recommendations for teachers, consultants and dentists, police officers, prison officers and the Armed Forces are being accepted and announced in full today.

Published 22 July 2019