Wishful thinking

First published in Letters

AS we all know we are in the middle of a recession or depression – yet the county council and the former police authority have increased their precepts, thereby putting pressure on the majority of citizens and especially those on the lowest incomes.

It would have been encouraging to see county councillors willingly accepting a reduction in their allowances – some have more than one – and even more encouraging to see senior officers, already earning much more than their counterparts in other authorities, volunteering to take a reduction in their salaries. But is that wishful thinking?

So imagine my surprise to hear that some county council employees have been told their salaries, like-for-like already amongst the lowest in Wales, will be cut by £1500 or even much more. All this without detailed consultation with individuals. The unions have not agreed.

So where are we heading?

Those in positions of authority are overpaid yet the lowest paid are viewed as expendable and obviously of less value. This type of philosophy is a recipe for discontentment and frustration.

But who cares for the lesser brethren? By the way, it seems that county councillors were initially unaware of these changes. I wonder why?

The authority will seek to hide behind the national legislation and having failed to persuade the trade unions they are seeking to impose their will on individual workers with offers of compensation and or threats of new terms of contract.

And it does not end there.

Soon all workers will learn about a reformed set of terms and conditions of service, which may have a major impact on many more employees.

By the way, the pay and conditions of senior officers are not subject to this review and all workers have had a pay freeze since 2009.

It was Owen Jones who wrote that we can assess the democratic nature of an organisation by measuring the difference between the salaries of the richest and the poorest of its employees.

JOHN COLE

Westhill Avenue

Milford Haven

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