General Election 2015Nick Clegg today announced plans for public sector pay to increase by at least inflation if the Liberal Democrats are voted into government.

Starting from the first full year of the next parliament, the party have promised that employees in the public sector will not have to face real term pay cuts by issuing guidance to pay review bodies to increase salaries in line with inflation until 2018, when they say it will increase further.

Leader of the Liberal Democrats Nick Clegg said:

“Workers across the public sector have made enough sacrifices. You have done your bit to help get the country back on track.

“That’s why the Liberal Democrats believe it is time to end the era of pay restraint.

“Under our plans, we will give all public sector workers – from teachers and nurses to social workers and police officers – pay rises that at least keep pace with the cost of living every year.”

Despite concerns whether the plan is realistically affordable, Clegg told the BBC’s Today Show this morning that the salary increases are essential, even if it means extra borrowing.

He added:

“If you are a public sector worker worried Tory cuts threaten your job, or Labour’s refusal to deal with the deficit means another year of pay cuts, then only a vote for the Lib Dems will guarantee you a fair pay deal.”

The Liberal Democrats have also pledged to clear the UK’s deficit of £27bn by 2017-18. Their plan is to cut £3bn from the welfare budget, £12bn from Whitehall, £5bn from tax rises and save a further £7bn by preventing tax avoidance.

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Title image courtesy of Liberal Democrats via Flickr