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From: The Socialist issue 593, 15 September 2009: Big business to blame for climate change

Search site for keywords: TUC - Pay - Inflation - Depression

TUC conference - reactions to Brown's speech

"Brown mentioned by way of tribute that Jack Jones's politics were shaped by the Great Depression of the 1930s. Yet Brown didn't mention that Jack came to the conclusion that socialism was the answer to the Depression."

Dave Walsh, Unite convenor Liverpool city council and a delegate to the TUC

"The Guardian today described Mandelson's statement as Labour making the 'kindest cuts'. But Brown told the TUC that the government has to tell the 'tough truth about hard choices'."

Kevin Parslow, a Unite delegate to the TUC

Janice Godrich, president of PCS, urged Brown in a direct question to reconsider cuts to early exit schemes for civil servants, which would affect thousands of low-paid workers. She also asked him to reinstate national pay bargaining in the civil service, abolished in 1994 and not reintroduced in 12 years of New Labour. Brown replied that because inflation and interest rates are low, this should be reflected in moderate pay deals. But every worker knows inflation is effectively much higher for the lower paid. Brown said he would be happy to write to the PCS over national pay bargaining, which attracted derisory laughter from their delegation!

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