Somerset County Council staff at 'breaking point', says UNISON boss

Chard & Ilminster News: County Hall in Taunton. County Hall in Taunton.

STRESSED-out staff at County Hall, Taunton, are at “breaking point” – and things could get worse with 190 jobs under threat, a union boss warns.

Somerset County Council, which is freezing council tax, proposes saving £20million by cutting services and jobs, due to a lower Government grant.

But UNISON’s Oliver Foster-Burnell says it will weaken the local economy and could hit Somerset’s most vulnerable.

He said: “Frontline services which have already been cut are still shrinking or disappearing.

“The council have been compliant and played their role in the reduction of crucial services, imposing a council tax freeze for a fourth year instead of trying to maintain its once ‘excellent’ services.”

He said UNISON is concerned at increased stress among staff due to greater workloads.

Figures show 3,809 days were lost to stress in the learning disabilities department last year, up from 3,497 in 2011; and 1,970 were lost in children’s social care services, up from 1,588.75.

A county spokesman said sickness levels were on a par with the best-performing English councils, although some absence levels have increased.

He added: “This is no different to that found in other organisations throughout the UK as we all try and grapple with the economic downturn.

“The current economic climate makes it hard for everyone and UNISON should understand that.”

The authority has introduced measures to support stressed staff.

Comments (27)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

7:40pm Mon 4 Feb 13

FreeSpeech? says...

Welcome to the real world, does Unison believe that public sector staff should be working in low stress environments whilst others have to deal with it every day?
Never mind you'll get used to it like all us mortals in the private sector except at the end of it you get a nice pension payed for by the tax payer unlike us who have to buy our own.
Welcome to the real world, does Unison believe that public sector staff should be working in low stress environments whilst others have to deal with it every day? Never mind you'll get used to it like all us mortals in the private sector except at the end of it you get a nice pension payed for by the tax payer unlike us who have to buy our own. FreeSpeech?

7:43pm Mon 4 Feb 13

numpty1 says...

Work in the public sector then if you think it is so amazing!
Work in the public sector then if you think it is so amazing! numpty1

7:52pm Mon 4 Feb 13

FreeSpeech? says...

Don't want to work in the public sector, but then again I wouldn't have a job if I couldn't cope with stress and I expect neither would most in the real world. My wife also works hard in a high stress environment and just gets on with it as it goes with the job.
Don't want to work in the public sector, but then again I wouldn't have a job if I couldn't cope with stress and I expect neither would most in the real world. My wife also works hard in a high stress environment and just gets on with it as it goes with the job. FreeSpeech?

7:53pm Mon 4 Feb 13

BaldCarl2 says...

They should stop moaning and get a new job if they don't like their current one.
They should stop moaning and get a new job if they don't like their current one. BaldCarl2

10:56pm Mon 4 Feb 13

Guy Smiley says...

Bless. Flexi-Time, unlimited sick pay and final salary pensions are a killer!!
Bless. Flexi-Time, unlimited sick pay and final salary pensions are a killer!! Guy Smiley

9:21am Tue 5 Feb 13

Bridgiman says...

Amazing how little sympathy there is for Council workers!

But I agree. The only stress is facing redundancy from their cushy little number at the council. And I expect the workers themselves are probably accepting of the situation. As usual the Union are making a mountain out of a mole hill.

Having faced redundancy in the last two years myself, I know it's horrible but it is a fact of life in the current economic climate. Why should they be any different?
Amazing how little sympathy there is for Council workers! But I agree. The only stress is facing redundancy from their cushy little number at the council. And I expect the workers themselves are probably accepting of the situation. As usual the Union are making a mountain out of a mole hill. Having faced redundancy in the last two years myself, I know it's horrible but it is a fact of life in the current economic climate. Why should they be any different? Bridgiman

10:02am Tue 5 Feb 13

jimeee says...

its a shame but this is the cost of a complete and utter shambles by the lib dems who left the council in such a mess...and the lib dems say we should borrow more...lol.
its a shame but this is the cost of a complete and utter shambles by the lib dems who left the council in such a mess...and the lib dems say we should borrow more...lol. jimeee

10:08am Tue 5 Feb 13

topcataj says...

Having worked in both sectors it's quite clear that a number of people who have only worked in the private sector don't know what they are talking about.

I would say the private sector jobs have been the less stressful...

UNISON probably over egg some stuff they argue about, but that's no different to anywhere else.
Having worked in both sectors it's quite clear that a number of people who have only worked in the private sector don't know what they are talking about. I would say the private sector jobs have been the less stressful... UNISON probably over egg some stuff they argue about, but that's no different to anywhere else. topcataj

11:50am Tue 5 Feb 13

souwesterly says...

They're moaning, stressed and worrying because quite truthfully, in the 'real business world' the majority of them would a) have been rejected as unemployable; b) would have been sacked for incompetence or c) would have been sacked for taking too much 'sick' time off.
This recession is one of the best things that could happen to our overloaded (i.e., overloaded with staff) public services.....hopeful
ly now the chaff will be sorted from the grain and we'll come out of it with leaner, cleaner and more efficient local authorities. (I can but hope.....)
Maybe some of the umpteen Luddite-like trade union workers will also get the push too.
They're moaning, stressed and worrying because quite truthfully, in the 'real business world' the majority of them would a) have been rejected as unemployable; b) would have been sacked for incompetence or c) would have been sacked for taking too much 'sick' time off. This recession is one of the best things that could happen to our overloaded (i.e., overloaded with staff) public services.....hopeful ly now the chaff will be sorted from the grain and we'll come out of it with leaner, cleaner and more efficient local authorities. (I can but hope.....) Maybe some of the umpteen Luddite-like trade union workers will also get the push too. souwesterly

1:54pm Tue 5 Feb 13

topcataj says...

Complete rubbish. There are some work shy muppets in all sectors, funnily enough several of them seem to be able to keep their jobs and even get promotions in the private sector too.

Ironically some people would be rejected as unemployable by the public sector because all they are concerned about is profit.

Public services need improvements to deliver the support they are meant to provide, but all that's happening at the moment is taking any opportunity to save money. There's no account taken of how good at their job someone is, there's no sorting the wheat from the chaff, and none of that is helping deliver the services people want/need/expect.

All you'll get is more mistakes as services are more stretched, reduced services in general and a worse attitude from those left trying to deliver them.

That's the 'real world' you want?
Complete rubbish. There are some work shy muppets in all sectors, funnily enough several of them seem to be able to keep their jobs and even get promotions in the private sector too. Ironically some people would be rejected as unemployable by the public sector because all they are concerned about is profit. Public services need improvements to deliver the support they are meant to provide, but all that's happening at the moment is taking any opportunity to save money. There's no account taken of how good at their job someone is, there's no sorting the wheat from the chaff, and none of that is helping deliver the services people want/need/expect. All you'll get is more mistakes as services are more stretched, reduced services in general and a worse attitude from those left trying to deliver them. That's the 'real world' you want? topcataj

2:36pm Tue 5 Feb 13

Useacarpark.com says...

It makes me laugh how everyone hates public sector workers. I worked in the forces where millions are **** away on pointless equipment, training, over staffing, yet we were treated like heroes who could do no wrong. Get those chips off your shoulders the extra stress can't be good for you if your private sector jobs are so tough? My last job in the private sector was cushy, no weekend work, opportunity to travel, bonuses, gifts from suppliers, free Christmas meal/party etc etc. perhaps some of you hard done by private sector staff have just picked **** jobs?
It makes me laugh how everyone hates public sector workers. I worked in the forces where millions are **** away on pointless equipment, training, over staffing, yet we were treated like heroes who could do no wrong. Get those chips off your shoulders the extra stress can't be good for you if your private sector jobs are so tough? My last job in the private sector was cushy, no weekend work, opportunity to travel, bonuses, gifts from suppliers, free Christmas meal/party etc etc. perhaps some of you hard done by private sector staff have just picked **** jobs? Useacarpark.com

4:19pm Tue 5 Feb 13

Monument says...

From my own experience Public Service like the private sector has good and bad staff.

The problem here just like my employment is the ever moaning, never happy, totally useless and out of touch Unison.
From my own experience Public Service like the private sector has good and bad staff. The problem here just like my employment is the ever moaning, never happy, totally useless and out of touch Unison. Monument

5:41pm Tue 5 Feb 13

windswept and interesting says...

souwesterly wrote:
They're moaning, stressed and worrying because quite truthfully, in the 'real business world' the majority of them would a) have been rejected as unemployable; b) would have been sacked for incompetence or c) would have been sacked for taking too much 'sick' time off.
This recession is one of the best things that could happen to our overloaded (i.e., overloaded with staff) public services.....hopeful

ly now the chaff will be sorted from the grain and we'll come out of it with leaner, cleaner and more efficient local authorities. (I can but hope.....)
Maybe some of the umpteen Luddite-like trade union workers will also get the push too.
mmmm...So who do you think deals with ever increasing amount of benefit claims etc ?? Trust me I temped for another Councils Housing Benefit Section and I have never worked so hard in my life...it was endless. They had 20% less staff than two years before and claims had increased by 40% so work that one out .

And before you come back, I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away. At one stage I had 200 staff, a £20 million budget. I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is.
[quote][p][bold]souwesterly[/bold] wrote: They're moaning, stressed and worrying because quite truthfully, in the 'real business world' the majority of them would a) have been rejected as unemployable; b) would have been sacked for incompetence or c) would have been sacked for taking too much 'sick' time off. This recession is one of the best things that could happen to our overloaded (i.e., overloaded with staff) public services.....hopeful ly now the chaff will be sorted from the grain and we'll come out of it with leaner, cleaner and more efficient local authorities. (I can but hope.....) Maybe some of the umpteen Luddite-like trade union workers will also get the push too.[/p][/quote]mmmm...So who do you think deals with ever increasing amount of benefit claims etc ?? Trust me I temped for another Councils Housing Benefit Section and I have never worked so hard in my life...it was endless. They had 20% less staff than two years before and claims had increased by 40% so work that one out . And before you come back, I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away. At one stage I had 200 staff, a £20 million budget. I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is. windswept and interesting

7:56pm Tue 5 Feb 13

mansell5 says...

There really are some ill informed, ignorant people on here. Free, tax payer funded pensions? Wise up, check your facts or shut up.
There really are some ill informed, ignorant people on here. Free, tax payer funded pensions? Wise up, check your facts or shut up. mansell5

9:20pm Tue 5 Feb 13

Mi_Coc says...

windswept and interesting wrote:
souwesterly wrote:
They're moaning, stressed and worrying because quite truthfully, in the 'real business world' the majority of them would a) have been rejected as unemployable; b) would have been sacked for incompetence or c) would have been sacked for taking too much 'sick' time off.
This recession is one of the best things that could happen to our overloaded (i.e., overloaded with staff) public services.....hopeful


ly now the chaff will be sorted from the grain and we'll come out of it with leaner, cleaner and more efficient local authorities. (I can but hope.....)
Maybe some of the umpteen Luddite-like trade union workers will also get the push too.
mmmm...So who do you think deals with ever increasing amount of benefit claims etc ?? Trust me I temped for another Councils Housing Benefit Section and I have never worked so hard in my life...it was endless. They had 20% less staff than two years before and claims had increased by 40% so work that one out .

And before you come back, I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away. At one stage I had 200 staff, a £20 million budget. I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is.
The TDBC principle benefits officer has been forced to check each weeks payment run for any claims that dont seem right and stop payment on them until they can be further checked. This is because they got hammered on their last audit for the amount of benefit incorrectly paid and poor record in recovering it!

Therefore he admits he has no faith in the staff in the benefits team so he checks and double checks their mistakes. My friend found this out when he recently claimed as the person who had processed his claimed and over calculated his benefit and he did not get paid on the day he was told as his claim was pulled.
[quote][p][bold]windswept and interesting[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]souwesterly[/bold] wrote: They're moaning, stressed and worrying because quite truthfully, in the 'real business world' the majority of them would a) have been rejected as unemployable; b) would have been sacked for incompetence or c) would have been sacked for taking too much 'sick' time off. This recession is one of the best things that could happen to our overloaded (i.e., overloaded with staff) public services.....hopeful ly now the chaff will be sorted from the grain and we'll come out of it with leaner, cleaner and more efficient local authorities. (I can but hope.....) Maybe some of the umpteen Luddite-like trade union workers will also get the push too.[/p][/quote]mmmm...So who do you think deals with ever increasing amount of benefit claims etc ?? Trust me I temped for another Councils Housing Benefit Section and I have never worked so hard in my life...it was endless. They had 20% less staff than two years before and claims had increased by 40% so work that one out . And before you come back, I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away. At one stage I had 200 staff, a £20 million budget. I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is.[/p][/quote]The TDBC principle benefits officer has been forced to check each weeks payment run for any claims that dont seem right and stop payment on them until they can be further checked. This is because they got hammered on their last audit for the amount of benefit incorrectly paid and poor record in recovering it! Therefore he admits he has no faith in the staff in the benefits team so he checks and double checks their mistakes. My friend found this out when he recently claimed as the person who had processed his claimed and over calculated his benefit and he did not get paid on the day he was told as his claim was pulled. Mi_Coc

10:23pm Tue 5 Feb 13

souwesterly says...

windswept and interesting says...
5:41pm Tue 5 Feb 13....." I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away...... I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is."
Good to hear it. Been there and worse. Lost my house through multiple redundancies. Once used to drive to Swindon and back every day as well as put in lots of overtime.....
*
How I should perhaps qualify my comment is by saying that our public services are overloaded at the top. I have to agree that the 'workers' seem to have to run around like ants, while more and more people carry badges and keys of responsibility, that few (of them) seem to know what to do with.
That set-up has proliferated since time immemorial I guess. Seniority that is brought about by age, not ability - is responsible. That seniority then 'demands' sycophant underlings, who in turn want their minions, etc, etc. At the bottom of the pile are the people to do the work.....
Regrettably this hierarchy system is too strongly entrenched to be 'improved' - especially since those at the top are now our rulers.
Now if the Benefit System could be revamped in the same way that the public sector should be, there's be a heck of a lot less claims.....
And re your comment about another council's Housing Benefit Section - that's just it - 20% less workers, but I bet there were many more 'managers'.
windswept and interesting says... 5:41pm Tue 5 Feb 13....." I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away...... I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is." Good to hear it. Been there and worse. Lost my house through multiple redundancies. Once used to drive to Swindon and back every day as well as put in lots of overtime..... * How I should perhaps qualify my comment is by saying that our public services are overloaded at the top. I have to agree that the 'workers' seem to have to run around like ants, while more and more people carry badges and keys of responsibility, that few (of them) seem to know what to do with. That set-up has proliferated since time immemorial I guess. Seniority that is brought about by age, not ability - is responsible. That seniority then 'demands' sycophant underlings, who in turn want their minions, etc, etc. At the bottom of the pile are the people to do the work..... Regrettably this hierarchy system is too strongly entrenched to be 'improved' - especially since those at the top are now our rulers. Now if the Benefit System could be revamped in the same way that the public sector should be, there's be a heck of a lot less claims..... And re your comment about another council's Housing Benefit Section - that's just it - 20% less workers, but I bet there were many more 'managers'. souwesterly

10:46pm Tue 5 Feb 13

windswept and interesting says...

souwesterly wrote:
windswept and interesting says...
5:41pm Tue 5 Feb 13....." I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away...... I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is."
Good to hear it. Been there and worse. Lost my house through multiple redundancies. Once used to drive to Swindon and back every day as well as put in lots of overtime.....
*
How I should perhaps qualify my comment is by saying that our public services are overloaded at the top. I have to agree that the 'workers' seem to have to run around like ants, while more and more people carry badges and keys of responsibility, that few (of them) seem to know what to do with.
That set-up has proliferated since time immemorial I guess. Seniority that is brought about by age, not ability - is responsible. That seniority then 'demands' sycophant underlings, who in turn want their minions, etc, etc. At the bottom of the pile are the people to do the work.....
Regrettably this hierarchy system is too strongly entrenched to be 'improved' - especially since those at the top are now our rulers.
Now if the Benefit System could be revamped in the same way that the public sector should be, there's be a heck of a lot less claims.....
And re your comment about another council's Housing Benefit Section - that's just it - 20% less workers, but I bet there were many more 'managers'.
Thanks for qualifying your comments...I have to say you are spot on !
[quote][p][bold]souwesterly[/bold] wrote: windswept and interesting says... 5:41pm Tue 5 Feb 13....." I have been employed for the past 39 years, lost 3 jobs through redundancy and started another straight away...... I worked 50 - 65 hours a week so I know what hard work is." Good to hear it. Been there and worse. Lost my house through multiple redundancies. Once used to drive to Swindon and back every day as well as put in lots of overtime..... * How I should perhaps qualify my comment is by saying that our public services are overloaded at the top. I have to agree that the 'workers' seem to have to run around like ants, while more and more people carry badges and keys of responsibility, that few (of them) seem to know what to do with. That set-up has proliferated since time immemorial I guess. Seniority that is brought about by age, not ability - is responsible. That seniority then 'demands' sycophant underlings, who in turn want their minions, etc, etc. At the bottom of the pile are the people to do the work..... Regrettably this hierarchy system is too strongly entrenched to be 'improved' - especially since those at the top are now our rulers. Now if the Benefit System could be revamped in the same way that the public sector should be, there's be a heck of a lot less claims..... And re your comment about another council's Housing Benefit Section - that's just it - 20% less workers, but I bet there were many more 'managers'.[/p][/quote]Thanks for qualifying your comments...I have to say you are spot on ! windswept and interesting

8:36am Wed 6 Feb 13

souwesterly says...

Ah, windswept and interesting, nice to be eye-to-eye across the chamber about something! :D
In this vein, my late father was a civil servant (Gold Medal RICS man - Valuation office) of some 35 years - and he used to say that he spent 30 of those years walking around with a folder under his arm doing s*d all and everyone thought he was very busy! Certainly brought him many promotions!
Ah, windswept and interesting, nice to be eye-to-eye across the chamber about something! :D In this vein, my late father was a civil servant (Gold Medal RICS man - Valuation office) of some 35 years - and he used to say that he spent 30 of those years walking around with a folder under his arm doing s*d all and everyone thought he was very busy! Certainly brought him many promotions! souwesterly

1:10pm Wed 6 Feb 13

Gem64 says...

Some of this is utter rubbish, I am a single Mum who as been employed by SCC, I do not work flexi, I am paid to work 37 hours a week but it usually more like 45, I never get the opportunity to take time owing. I pay a very high contribution towards my pension and am very competant and employable elsewhere thank you very much. I think you are all being very narrow minded and blinkered. If you dont like working in the Private sector, work hard like I did and get one with the council, then maybe you will see its not the easy ride you fools think it is.
Some of this is utter rubbish, I am a single Mum who as been employed by SCC, I do not work flexi, I am paid to work 37 hours a week but it usually more like 45, I never get the opportunity to take time owing. I pay a very high contribution towards my pension and am very competant and employable elsewhere thank you very much. I think you are all being very narrow minded and blinkered. If you dont like working in the Private sector, work hard like I did and get one with the council, then maybe you will see its not the easy ride you fools think it is. Gem64

1:19pm Wed 6 Feb 13

Mi_Coc says...

Gem64 wrote:
Some of this is utter rubbish, I am a single Mum who as been employed by SCC, I do not work flexi, I am paid to work 37 hours a week but it usually more like 45, I never get the opportunity to take time owing. I pay a very high contribution towards my pension and am very competant and employable elsewhere thank you very much. I think you are all being very narrow minded and blinkered. If you dont like working in the Private sector, work hard like I did and get one with the council, then maybe you will see its not the easy ride you fools think it is.
No matter what you pay into your pension £1 in every £5 of council tax is paid in so you get a pension that is much better that 90% of the privat sector. I know a 73 old civil servant who retired in his early 50 and he jokes that he broke even at 70 and is now getting more than he ever paid in. He also gets winter heating payments even though he lives in a hot country 9 months of the year and has inherented his family wealth.
[quote][p][bold]Gem64[/bold] wrote: Some of this is utter rubbish, I am a single Mum who as been employed by SCC, I do not work flexi, I am paid to work 37 hours a week but it usually more like 45, I never get the opportunity to take time owing. I pay a very high contribution towards my pension and am very competant and employable elsewhere thank you very much. I think you are all being very narrow minded and blinkered. If you dont like working in the Private sector, work hard like I did and get one with the council, then maybe you will see its not the easy ride you fools think it is.[/p][/quote]No matter what you pay into your pension £1 in every £5 of council tax is paid in so you get a pension that is much better that 90% of the privat sector. I know a 73 old civil servant who retired in his early 50 and he jokes that he broke even at 70 and is now getting more than he ever paid in. He also gets winter heating payments even though he lives in a hot country 9 months of the year and has inherented his family wealth. Mi_Coc

1:50pm Wed 6 Feb 13

souwesterly says...

How right you are Mi_Coc, saying....." you get a pension that is much better that 90% of the privat sector." Public Sector pensions are gold-lined, waterproofed, non-stick and inflation-proofed...
...despite all the recent press and cut-backs. (And that's not to mention all the perks-of-the-trade that tend to come with a Public Service job to offset the additional pension contributions.)
Gem64 - nice to hear that someone pulls their weight - but are all your fellow-workers as hardworking as you? Are all of them 'up to the job', as they say? And, more importantly, do the bosses pull their weight too?
How right you are Mi_Coc, saying....." you get a pension that is much better that 90% of the privat sector." Public Sector pensions are gold-lined, waterproofed, non-stick and inflation-proofed... ...despite all the recent press and cut-backs. (And that's not to mention all the perks-of-the-trade that tend to come with a Public Service job to offset the additional pension contributions.) Gem64 - nice to hear that someone pulls their weight - but are all your fellow-workers as hardworking as you? Are all of them 'up to the job', as they say? And, more importantly, do the bosses pull their weight too? souwesterly

2:02pm Wed 6 Feb 13

topcataj says...

Local government is not civil service and are completely separate pension schemes as far as I am aware.
You may also notice that the way the pension system works has changed in the last 20 years. For example the '85' rule where you could get full pension if your age and years service added up to at least 85 was scrapped over 6 years ago.

And let not forget that anyone who retires with a pension below a certain level can get topped up with tax payer money, regardless of the sector they worked in.
Based on the number of claimants of pension credit and the average weekly value, that was over £60 million in 2011 in Somerset.
Local government is not civil service and are completely separate pension schemes as far as I am aware. You may also notice that the way the pension system works has changed in the last 20 years. For example the '85' rule where you could get full pension if your age and years service added up to at least 85 was scrapped over 6 years ago. And let not forget that anyone who retires with a pension below a certain level can get topped up with tax payer money, regardless of the sector they worked in. Based on the number of claimants of pension credit and the average weekly value, that was over £60 million in 2011 in Somerset. topcataj

2:08pm Wed 6 Feb 13

topcataj says...

Ah yes, souwesterly, all those perks, bonuses, free gifts, office parties all paid for by the tax payer....
Oh no, wait a minute, that's the private sector isn't it. It felt quite odd when I moved to the private sector and got bottles of wine and free bar at Christmas parties.

Think of all that money saved that could be put into a pension...
Ah yes, souwesterly, all those perks, bonuses, free gifts, office parties all paid for by the tax payer.... Oh no, wait a minute, that's the private sector isn't it. It felt quite odd when I moved to the private sector and got bottles of wine and free bar at Christmas parties. Think of all that money saved that could be put into a pension... topcataj

6:14pm Wed 6 Feb 13

souwesterly says...

topcataj wrote:
Ah yes, souwesterly, all those perks, bonuses, free gifts, office parties all paid for by the tax payer....
Oh no, wait a minute, that's the private sector isn't it. It felt quite odd when I moved to the private sector and got bottles of wine and free bar at Christmas parties.

Think of all that money saved that could be put into a pension...
Yep - miss all that myself! Free meals out, corporate hospitality, great sponsored outings, reserved parking, discount cards - as well as the free booze and parties.....and the bonuses!
But at least we worked for the perks.
You, topcataj, obviously got the wrong end of the pineapple in you public sector lifetime - you were obviously a worker and not a boss.
Hard luck.
At least in the private sector, the profits were shared more evenly - in the public side of things, only those at the very top seem to have benefitted.
As for local government and the civil service being apart - apologies - but people, not just I, still tar them with the same brush.
[quote][p][bold]topcataj[/bold] wrote: Ah yes, souwesterly, all those perks, bonuses, free gifts, office parties all paid for by the tax payer.... Oh no, wait a minute, that's the private sector isn't it. It felt quite odd when I moved to the private sector and got bottles of wine and free bar at Christmas parties. Think of all that money saved that could be put into a pension...[/p][/quote]Yep - miss all that myself! Free meals out, corporate hospitality, great sponsored outings, reserved parking, discount cards - as well as the free booze and parties.....and the bonuses! But at least we worked for the perks. You, topcataj, obviously got the wrong end of the pineapple in you public sector lifetime - you were obviously a worker and not a boss. Hard luck. At least in the private sector, the profits were shared more evenly - in the public side of things, only those at the very top seem to have benefitted. As for local government and the civil service being apart - apologies - but people, not just I, still tar them with the same brush. souwesterly

9:36pm Wed 6 Feb 13

FreeSpeech? says...

topcataj wrote:
Local government is not civil service and are completely separate pension schemes as far as I am aware.
You may also notice that the way the pension system works has changed in the last 20 years. For example the '85' rule where you could get full pension if your age and years service added up to at least 85 was scrapped over 6 years ago.

And let not forget that anyone who retires with a pension below a certain level can get topped up with tax payer money, regardless of the sector they worked in.
Based on the number of claimants of pension credit and the average weekly value, that was over £60 million in 2011 in Somerset.
Absolute rubbish and I suggest you read up as they are all public sector workers so stop trying to baffle us with bull. Tax payers put in about 90% of public sector contributions and anyone who says anything different are liars.
[quote][p][bold]topcataj[/bold] wrote: Local government is not civil service and are completely separate pension schemes as far as I am aware. You may also notice that the way the pension system works has changed in the last 20 years. For example the '85' rule where you could get full pension if your age and years service added up to at least 85 was scrapped over 6 years ago. And let not forget that anyone who retires with a pension below a certain level can get topped up with tax payer money, regardless of the sector they worked in. Based on the number of claimants of pension credit and the average weekly value, that was over £60 million in 2011 in Somerset.[/p][/quote]Absolute rubbish and I suggest you read up as they are all public sector workers so stop trying to baffle us with bull. Tax payers put in about 90% of public sector contributions and anyone who says anything different are liars. FreeSpeech?

10:40am Thu 7 Feb 13

topcataj says...

You two really should stop digging...
Pretty sure bosses in the private sector do a lot better than the workers too...

And Freespeech, no bull, just facts, unfortunately for you. The bit I don't know is how different the civil service and local gov pensions are, they might be reasonably similar, but I'm under the impression the civil service scheme is better in general. Teachers' pensions are different again.
The scrapping of the 85 rule is fact, give it a google.

And yes, if you consider that a public sector employee is paid a wage from the public sector purse and has employer contributions paid from the public sector purse, obviously a very large percentage of it comes from taxes. But I took the figures for Pension Credit directly from the official stats published by NOMIS (https://www.nomiswe
b.co.uk/) and that figure of £60million is in the right ball park for public sector money paid to people receiving pension credit.

This is contrived maths but is more than £300 million collected in Council Tax in Somerset? If not, then presumably more than the £1 in every £5 of council tax mentioned by souwesterly is paid to people who qualify for pension credit.

Presumably people who didn't work in the public sector, as they would be getting enough anyway, right?
You two really should stop digging... Pretty sure bosses in the private sector do a lot better than the workers too... And Freespeech, no bull, just facts, unfortunately for you. The bit I don't know is how different the civil service and local gov pensions are, they might be reasonably similar, but I'm under the impression the civil service scheme is better in general. Teachers' pensions are different again. The scrapping of the 85 rule is fact, give it a google. And yes, if you consider that a public sector employee is paid a wage from the public sector purse and has employer contributions paid from the public sector purse, obviously a very large percentage of it comes from taxes. But I took the figures for Pension Credit directly from the official stats published by NOMIS (https://www.nomiswe b.co.uk/) and that figure of £60million is in the right ball park for public sector money paid to people receiving pension credit. This is contrived maths but is more than £300 million collected in Council Tax in Somerset? If not, then presumably more than the £1 in every £5 of council tax mentioned by souwesterly is paid to people who qualify for pension credit. Presumably people who didn't work in the public sector, as they would be getting enough anyway, right? topcataj

6:17pm Thu 7 Feb 13

Mi_Coc says...

Its not like they have to operate within a budget and make a profit!!

Its just a budget and it seems for years before the recession the attitude was that overspending was fine. HENCE the DEBT that they were in when the cuts started.

If it was a private business the plug would of been pulled long ago! The banks only entertain overdraft extensions and loans because its goverment funded.

Also there has been a MASSIVE OVER SPEND on the new hospital building and now instead of 200 new beds for the original sum we are getting 120 and that is being paid for by an additional bank loan. If your public sector its just ask the bank and though shalt receive!!!
Its not like they have to operate within a budget and make a profit!! Its just a budget and it seems for years before the recession the attitude was that overspending was fine. HENCE the DEBT that they were in when the cuts started. If it was a private business the plug would of been pulled long ago! The banks only entertain overdraft extensions and loans because its goverment funded. Also there has been a MASSIVE OVER SPEND on the new hospital building and now instead of 200 new beds for the original sum we are getting 120 and that is being paid for by an additional bank loan. If your public sector its just ask the bank and though shalt receive!!! Mi_Coc

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree