Gordon Brown braced for fight over Forces Pay - DTel

#1
today's Daily Telegraph. There is a 'have your say' link on that page.

Gordon Brown braced for fight over Forces pay

By Robert Winnett, Deputy Political Editor
Last Updated: 1:26am GMT 05/01/2008

Gordon Brown is preparing for a showdown with the Armed Forces as an official review is expected to recommend a "significant" increase in pay to compensate troops for the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Armed Forces Pay Review Body will meet within a few weeks and is expected to call for a large rise in the "X-factor" payment received by the military to compensate for the threats and hardship troops face compared with civilian workers.

The payment, which stands at 13 per cent, was last reviewed in 2000. Since then the hazards of military life have increased significantly with the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A document drawn up to assist the pay review body says that the X-factor payment will this year be reviewed against 11 different criteria including the "danger" faced by the Armed Forces, the "turbulence" of service, and the "inability to resign at will".

A well-placed source said that a "significant increase will be recommended" although the exact level will be decided over the coming weeks.

There are also thought to be growing concerns that military pay in the lower and middle ranks is slipping behind comparable jobs in the public and private sector which is adding to problems in retaining experienced personnel.

The military is excluded from minimum wage legislation at present and this may also be reviewed.

An increase in the X-factor payment to 20 per cent would increase the starting salary of a private - currently £15,677 - by more than £1,000 a year. An Army sergeant would get almost £2,000 more. The extra payment would be in addition to the standard pay rise and is expected to be implemented in April.

The Armed Forces, like the police, are prevented from joining a trade union or taking industrial action and the Government is traditionally expected to abide by pay review recommendations.

If Mr Brown attempts to water down the recommendations he is likely to come under renewed attack amid criticism that he is neglecting the military covenant.
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#2
Intersting article, I doubt wether broon will bend - I expect it will be the usual 3%, the Irishmans pay rise.............. :x

edited cos I is a mong
 
#3
This is likely to develop into something of a rather large sh1t storm if Broon (Nos10) and Broon (Swiss) do not honour their apparently heartfelt commitment to HM Forces. I wonder if they will attempt to "restructure" the X factor in some way that has an overall no cost effect. Or will this allow another chance at presenting serving personnel with an apparent bonus ( like the CILOCT issue) that is actually nothing at all.

Hopefully there will be enough resentment across the UK Armed Forces combined with underlying public support to ensure that any pay award is both fair and is applied with the same high level of integrity that the Government expect of us.

There is far too much skullduggery, double talk and basic immorality in politics today, to allow us to trust them fully!
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#4
I'm sure I've just seen Bob Hope go past, with his mate, No.

Outstanding point their, er, Outstanding - more likely to be a restructuring, after a lengthy review, with a total of s0d-all given out, and the fact being buried amongst an outrageous news story about x-factor contestants being belittled in the house for being homosexual.
 
#5
I wonder if they are likely to increase the resettlement grant in august also - for the pittance which we get - I hope the fecker goes up soon I haven't got that long left, time is running out, even sooner for a lot more personnel.
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#7
Outstanding has it pretty much on the button, I think.

Once again, a brief explanation of the funding situation. The 'allocation' to Defence over the next 3 years has already been settled. Fact. It's done and dusted, and we won't get any more. What is at stake is how much of this cash is given in pay and allowances. What has happened in the past is that the Armed Forces Pay Review Body has always recommended a pay increase above that which the Treasury thinks 'right'. So what? Well, in simple terms imagine that the fter all the negotiations are complete, MoD have been given £35Bn for Defence, including an overall increase of say 3%, and the Treasury (still very much under the control of GB, of course) thinks that pay should go up by 2.5% - that 2.5% increase will be included in the £35Bn. If the AFPRB recommend a 4% increase, and the MoD agrees, then that is paid - with the extra money coming out of the rest of defence. This has regularly been the case for many years, with the result that the pay/allowances spend of defence as a proportion of the whole has increased dramatically over the past 20 to 30 years (at the expense of course of spending on other stuff - Kit, Accomodation, Welfare, etc.).

So in general GB doesn't give a sh^t how much the AFPRB recommend, as it's coming out of money already spent. THERE IS NO NEW MONEY.

The only time that there could be trouble is if the Government has stated flatly that no-one in the public sector is to get more than a certain amount (e.g. the Police in England). This is where the fiddling with x-factor comes in. Greater allowances, etc., can disguise an increase in overall pay above any limit.

But remember - there is NO MORE MONEY.
 
#8
Thanks Snowy, good explanation, I suppose that GB could approve a package that spreads payment over a 3 year period, but that would be very nasty!
 
#9
Thanks for putting that across so well Old_Snowy - Smoke and Mirrors being fired for effect in the halls of Whitehall again.

Does anyone have a comparitive table, that shows public sector rates at the sharp end?- Police, Fire, etc.
 
#10
If this did turn out to be true, it would be a huge help to the younger lads who are being treated to the delights of PAYD and the increased accom charges when they move into the new Z-types.
 
#11
Well our juniors are laughing kit bags, they are living SSSA down town in brand new modern flats, with remote control door control for garage under ground parking, balconies, ikea furniture etc (you get the idea) Did I mention they are getting SHITE LOADS of money for this? A Lcpl is taking home 2700 squid when on tour! 3% to them i'm sure will be fine!!
 
#12
blobmeister said:
Well our juniors are laughing kit bags, they are living SSSA down town in brand new modern flats, with remote control door control for garage under ground parking, balconies, ikea furniture etc (you get the idea) Did I mention they are getting SHITE LOADS of money for this? A Lcpl is taking home 2700 squid when on tour! 3% to them i'm sure will be fine!!
What unit is this so I can get my PPP in.

Certainly sounds better than the shithole I'm in at the mo in tidders.
 
#13
ABrighter2006 said:
Does anyone have a comparitive table, that shows public sector rates at the sharp end?- Police, Fire, etc.
My favourite gubment spin is when they compare the wages of our army against other armies, and inform us that we're in the top ten highest paid armies of the world...

....no sh!t sherlock...

instead of spin, they should be transparent and publish the salaries of other public sector workers in a global league table, eg, its great saying a Brit LCpl earns 15x what a LCpl in the Bolivian army earns, but i'd hazard a guess that a Met police officer earns 20x what a cop in La Paz earns...a Brit Sgt may earn more than his German counterpart, but a Brit Firefighter is on a much better deal than a Feurwehroffizer!

and that's the point...spin, spin and more spin
 
#14
That's really very reassuring to know that the British Armed Forces are highly paid-bullsh1t!

We live in a country that is very expensive; petrol £4.70 and diesel £5.00 per gallon respectively.

Housing costs are crazy and so are utility bills.

That is why I am heading for a new life down under in the Aussie army, who pay well and the Government actually value their Armed Forces. The cost of living in much more friendly and you get more for your money. I am just one of many thousands who have or are making the move, whether it be via the Armed Forces or the civi route.

Surf's up!


Lats
 
#17
Don't expect the government to agree with any independent recommendations on anything.

They didn't with police wages and that was for only 0.6%

But the forces should be getting paid a hell of a lot more than they do for the danger and hardships they routinely face.

It's a shame that this government can't see this yet try to push through large rises for themselves.

edited for Mlllaaarr spelling
 
#18
Had a guy with us on Long Look, he is doing the digging (excuse pun) over the water working the same job trade, he has spoken to his Command with regards to quals, expertise etc. They are crying out for my field and are going to do the hard work for me, they are keeping me informed with update's. It was a good way to do it without ruffling feather's this side.
 
#19
bitterandtwisted said:
I wonder if they are likely to increase the resettlement grant in august also - for the pittance which we get - I hope the fecker goes up soon I haven't got that long left, time is running out, even sooner for a lot more personnel.
Are you trying to say that £534 isn't enough to train for a new career? :roll:

Seriously though, that individual resettlement training grant hasn't gone up for at least 10 years. Every now and again someone writes into Soldier and gets the same glib, bureaucratic answer which basically says "f*** off" and promises to review it in the future. I'd be interested to know if anyone could confirm how long it's been at £534. Then I'd like to apply interest rates to it over that timespan, to work out how much it has decreased in real terms.

How about this one:
"It's Tommy this and Tommy that and chuck him on his ear
Here's your half-a-grand to help prepare for a new career
We're sorry for your ruined health and the marriage that you gave
But it's cheaper in the long run if you meet an early grave"
:x
 
#20
The reality is that the Pay Review Body is anything but independent because it gets such clear direction from the treasury. If they award across the board rises above what is approved for public sector, then it will get staged as recently done to police and military many times in the past. Senior commanders are reluctant to fight for above inflation increases because they know the rest of the budget has to take the hit as pointed out by Snowy.

Isn't it time someone independent is involved in the consultation proocess - BAFF maybe?
 

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