Plea for public sector pay demands to stay low

Chancellor Gordon Brown is calling for public service workers not to ask for big pay rises after warning of the risks from a European economic slowdown.

In a speech to the Amicus trade union, Brown is expected to say reform and “wage discipline” must match investment in public services.

“In the public sector, reform and wage discipline will at all times match our investment, as we replace input and process targets by far more local, on-the-ground accountability,” he will say.

Brown is also underlining his opposition to the European Parliament’s calls for a strict 48-hour working week.

MEPs last week voted to end opt-outs from the 48-hour working week, including in the UK.

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