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PPMA responds to private-sector criticism of public-sector strike action

Public sector HR directors have responded to news that private- sector staff have no sympathy for public-sector strikes by saying public-sector unrest should be understandable, given the current economic climate.

Dean Shoesmith (pictured0, president of the Public Sector People Managers’ Association (PPMA), responded to yesterday’s announcement from the CIPD.

He said: "The CIPD’s latest Employee Outlook survey outlines unrest within the public sector – and that the private sector will lose sympathy should they act on it. While it is understandable strike action is an undesired outcome for all, unrest within the public sector is not surprising given the uncertainty of the future and the predicted job loss estimated by the Office for Budget Responsibility to be 600,000. 

"However, the public sector has been well aware for a long time that cuts have to be made and many organisations have been actively working to engage employees and unions to ensure that they are as fair as possible. We believe the trade unions will continue to take a considered view of the situation, listen to their members and act accordingly.

"Threats to jobs and pay, just as the private sector has experienced, is a bitter pill to swallow – regardless of sector or industry. Anxiety about job security and the ability to deliver essential front line services will continue, even after the Corporate Spending Review, but discussing reductions openly and honestly with employees, unions and, most importantly, those to whom we provide services is crucial to survive the future."