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Pay

Oral Answers to Questions — Civil Service – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 10th December 1980.

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Photo of Jack Straw Jack Straw Shadow Spokesperson (Treasury) 12:00 am, 10th December 1980

asked the Minister for the Civil Service if he will make a statement on the current state of negotiations over Civil Service pay.

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

The Government have made clear that the 1981 Civil Service pay settlement will be based on the cash limit, reflecting what the country as a whole can afford.

Photo of Jack Straw Jack Straw Shadow Spokesperson (Treasury)

As the Secretary of State for the Environment said that the 6 per cent. pay policy would continue for two years, will the Minister say whether that 6 per cent. cash limit will apply to Civil Service pay negotiations for the same two-year period?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

We have not even set the cash limit for the Civil Service for 1981, let alone 1982. I hope that the hon. Gentleman will not object if I ask him to be patient for a little longer.

Photo of Mr Jock Bruce-Gardyne Mr Jock Bruce-Gardyne , Knutsford

May I press my right hon. Friend a little further on the question of comparability? Is he aware that the issue that must be of concern is the suspension of comparability for only the present negotiations? Does he agree that our experience during the past year shows that the whole concept of comparability in assessing appropriate rates of pay thoughout the public sector is nonsense?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

I note my hon. Friend's view, of which I was already aware. Decisions have been taken about the 1981 pay settlement. No decisions whatsoever have been taken about 1982. Talks are taking place with trade unions about that matter. I shall bear in mind what my hon. Friend has said, and we shall discuss the matter with him.

Photo of Mr Ian Wrigglesworth Mr Ian Wrigglesworth , Teesside Thornaby

Under the Government's present policy, can any civil servant obtain more than 6 per cent., and, if so, how?

Photo of Mr Paul Channon Mr Paul Channon , Southend West

As no cash limit has yet been set for the Civil Service, it is impossible for me to answer that question. I have said on many occasions that pay will be dealt with broadly within the same financial disciplines as those already announced, but no cash limit has been set.