TUC general secretary Brendan Barber warns prime minister Gordon Brown of discontent over public sector pay

A union head has warned Gordon Brown that he could pay a ‘political price’ at the next general election unless the government improves public sector pay.

Speaking ahead of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) Congress in Brighton on Sunday, Brendan Barber, general secretary of the TUC, said the government was paying the price for the way in which change and this year’s pay has been managed. “There’s a strong feeling of demoralisation,” Barber said.

“Millions of public sector workers who work with dedication and commitment feel real resentment and anger at the way the government this year have tried to railroad through a rigid, unjustified pay limit well below the rate of inflation,” he added.

Barber’s comments follow a walkout by prison officers last week, and nurses and police officers are also considering action in protest over poor pay offers.

The threat of local government strikes across England, Northern Ireland and Wales also intensified last month after workers voted overwhelmingly to reject a below-inflation pay offer of 2%.

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