Jersey union not ruling out strikes over pay freeze

A union leader said it would not rule out strike action over a possible two-year pay freeze for States employees.

The chief minister said there was no money in the budget for pay increases in the next two years.

Senator Ian Gorst said his department was proposing a rise of up to 2.5% in 2014 for States employees.

Nick Corbel, from Unite, said the freeze was a "slap in the face" and that his members were looking to taking serious action over the plans.

The pay freeze would apply to all public service employees including nurses, teachers and civil servants.

The States said negotiations with the different pay groups are at different stages but the freeze is being proposed across the board.

Mr Corbel said: "It is a joke, it is an insult, it is a slap in the face for all public service workers. They have not had a real terms pay rise for some years."

In a statement, the chief minister said it was important the public sector could sustain essential services in the face of an ageing population and increasing costs.

Senator Gorst told BBC News: "This offer comes from a backdrop of the government saying to the community we will be making savings of £65m right across the States.

"At the same time we asked them for small increases in taxation."

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