Public sector pay plans for 2021-22

25 November 2020

Some of the key announcements in the Spending Review 2020 centred around what will happen to public sector pay in tax year 2021-22.

Three main points were made, as follows:

  • A pay rise will be provided for more than one million NHS workers
  • The lowest paid will be prioritised, so 2.1 million public sectors who earn less than the median wage of £24,000 will receive a pay rise of a minimum of £250
  • For the rest of the public sector, there will be a freeze on pay rises for tax year 2021-22

The accompanying document to the Spending Review 2020 confirms that, by pausing headline pay awards next year for some workforces, this will enable the Government to protect public sector jobs and to invest further in public services in order to respond to spending pressures generated by coronavirus. It will also ensure that there is no widening of the gap between public and private sector pay.

Within his speech, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, confirmed:

“To protect public sector jobs at this time of crisis, and ensure fairness between the public and private sectors, I am taking three steps today.

First, taking account of the pay review bodies advice, we will provide a pay rise to over a million Nurses, Doctors and others working in the NHS.

Second, to protect jobs, pay rises in the rest of the public sector will be paused next year.

But third, we will protect those on lower incomes.                                                                                            

The 2.1 million public sector workers who earn below the median wage of £24,000, will be guaranteed a pay rise of at least £250.

What this means, Mr Speaker, is that while the government is making the difficult decision to control public sector pay the majority of public sector workers will see their pay increase next year.”


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