Public Sector Workers and Political Activity

Public sector workers – civil servants, council employees and others – are banned from any kind of "political" activity if above a particular grade. They may not "engaging in a range of political activities" even if they do not brief elected officers, the press or public, and the activity is totally unrelated to their work or even the work of their employer. For example, a computer technician on spinal point 44 and working for the local council cannot legally write to the local newspaper supporting a campaign to keep a local school open because political parties at the education authority would have differing views, making the matter "political".  If just one MP or councillor expresses a dissenting opinion the matter is political.

Technically it is not even legal for any public sector worker on Scale Point 44 or above (about £30,000) to post an idea here or even click on the vote button. This is absurd. The Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (section 2) was introduced to stop abuses where council workers had phantom jobs and were really party workers getting council pay. This abuse is rare today and well understood to be corrupt.

It might be argued that exemptions can be obtained by applying. But in many cases people want to keep work and politics separate, and applying for official permission ends up labelling people.

In some organisations people on SC44 are many levels below the top of the organisation, have never met the elected officers and do not brief press, public or elected officials. The definition needs to be tightened. The top 2 tiers of management should be banned from political activity. Departments and people specifically involved in briefing elected officers, public or press on political matters should be banned. Other people should NOT be banned.

Why is this idea important?

Public sector workers – civil servants, council employees and others – are banned from any kind of "political" activity if above a particular grade. They may not "engaging in a range of political activities" even if they do not brief elected officers, the press or public, and the activity is totally unrelated to their work or even the work of their employer. For example, a computer technician on spinal point 44 and working for the local council cannot legally write to the local newspaper supporting a campaign to keep a local school open because political parties at the education authority would have differing views, making the matter "political".  If just one MP or councillor expresses a dissenting opinion the matter is political.

Technically it is not even legal for any public sector worker on Scale Point 44 or above (about £30,000) to post an idea here or even click on the vote button. This is absurd. The Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (section 2) was introduced to stop abuses where council workers had phantom jobs and were really party workers getting council pay. This abuse is rare today and well understood to be corrupt.

It might be argued that exemptions can be obtained by applying. But in many cases people want to keep work and politics separate, and applying for official permission ends up labelling people.

In some organisations people on SC44 are many levels below the top of the organisation, have never met the elected officers and do not brief press, public or elected officials. The definition needs to be tightened. The top 2 tiers of management should be banned from political activity. Departments and people specifically involved in briefing elected officers, public or press on political matters should be banned. Other people should NOT be banned.

Councils use tax payers’ money for Union Activities

 

Make it illegal for councils and other public bodies to use tax payers' money for Union Activities

See "Taxpayers spend millions paying for trade union activities" at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/7981717/Taxpayers-spend-millions-paying-for-trade-union-activities.html

Here are a few extracts:

Millions of pounds of taxpayers' money is being used by public bodies to pay the salaries of trade union officials, an investigation by The Sunday Telegraph has found.

Local authorities across the country are allowing hundreds of their employees to devote all or part of their working week to union, rather than council, duties – while their salaries are paid from public funds.

A survey of 77 English councils by this newspaper found that they spent around £11 million last year on the salaries of individuals who were employed by the councils, but in fact spent their time on trade union duties. [Apparently the actual figure is believed to be far higher.]

The Town Hall payments are made under local agreements struck between each council and the unions that are represented among its workforce.

In some cases, council officials who are also union representatives are paid by the council to work full time for the union. In other cases, councils allow members of their staff to spend a proportion of their working week on union matters, while continuing to pay their full salaries from council funds.

Among the findings of the survey were that: a full-time representative of the Unison union is paid £52,000 a year by Enfield council, while a full-time GMB official at Tower Hamlets is paid £58,106 a year by the council.  The Town Hall payments are made under local agreements struck between each council and the unions that are represented among its workforce.

[Apparently companies like the BBC are equally misusing taxpayers' funds.]

A spokesman for the Local Government Association, which represents councils, said: "The law says that employers have to give staff reasonable time for union duties. It helps ensure good industrial relations."

 

Why is this idea important?

 

Make it illegal for councils and other public bodies to use tax payers' money for Union Activities

See "Taxpayers spend millions paying for trade union activities" at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/7981717/Taxpayers-spend-millions-paying-for-trade-union-activities.html

Here are a few extracts:

Millions of pounds of taxpayers' money is being used by public bodies to pay the salaries of trade union officials, an investigation by The Sunday Telegraph has found.

Local authorities across the country are allowing hundreds of their employees to devote all or part of their working week to union, rather than council, duties – while their salaries are paid from public funds.

A survey of 77 English councils by this newspaper found that they spent around £11 million last year on the salaries of individuals who were employed by the councils, but in fact spent their time on trade union duties. [Apparently the actual figure is believed to be far higher.]

The Town Hall payments are made under local agreements struck between each council and the unions that are represented among its workforce.

In some cases, council officials who are also union representatives are paid by the council to work full time for the union. In other cases, councils allow members of their staff to spend a proportion of their working week on union matters, while continuing to pay their full salaries from council funds.

Among the findings of the survey were that: a full-time representative of the Unison union is paid £52,000 a year by Enfield council, while a full-time GMB official at Tower Hamlets is paid £58,106 a year by the council.  The Town Hall payments are made under local agreements struck between each council and the unions that are represented among its workforce.

[Apparently companies like the BBC are equally misusing taxpayers' funds.]

A spokesman for the Local Government Association, which represents councils, said: "The law says that employers have to give staff reasonable time for union duties. It helps ensure good industrial relations."

 

Public Sector Job Advertising

Not strictly business, I know, but an idea to broaden the base of recruitment to managerial posts in the public sector.

 

Why not remove the monopoly held by The Guardian newspaper over the advertising of managerial posts in this sector?  Stipulate that such posts should be advertised in the recruitment sections of a specified list of papers which would include a broad range of political views.  In time, the public sector would have to interview and appoint people of a broader range of views than are perhaps found among Guardian readers (no disrespect to them intended).

Why is this idea important?

Not strictly business, I know, but an idea to broaden the base of recruitment to managerial posts in the public sector.

 

Why not remove the monopoly held by The Guardian newspaper over the advertising of managerial posts in this sector?  Stipulate that such posts should be advertised in the recruitment sections of a specified list of papers which would include a broad range of political views.  In time, the public sector would have to interview and appoint people of a broader range of views than are perhaps found among Guardian readers (no disrespect to them intended).

Remove All Distinctions Between Public And Private Employees.

To remove all distinctions between public and private employees. This barrier between workers is historically based and its use is now in doubt and cannot be justified in terms of the superior condidtions and expectations now held by public sector employees.

Why is this idea important?

To remove all distinctions between public and private employees. This barrier between workers is historically based and its use is now in doubt and cannot be justified in terms of the superior condidtions and expectations now held by public sector employees.

Remove TV and Radio Licensing

These days everyone has some use of TV and/or radio and it is very expensive to administer a system of collection and enforcement for the few who don't.

This can simply be added to taxation – tax on spending may work since it takes more from those who spend more.

But by reducing the administrative overhead there is no need to collect as much from the taxpayer and this should be recognised by making the new system revenue neutral to the Treasury/ BBC.

To prevent overfunding in future years, the funding should be assessedas against a per capita costing (i.e. work out what the funding per person would be and determine whether or not this would be a reasonable amount to give the BBC(.

Why is this idea important?

These days everyone has some use of TV and/or radio and it is very expensive to administer a system of collection and enforcement for the few who don't.

This can simply be added to taxation – tax on spending may work since it takes more from those who spend more.

But by reducing the administrative overhead there is no need to collect as much from the taxpayer and this should be recognised by making the new system revenue neutral to the Treasury/ BBC.

To prevent overfunding in future years, the funding should be assessedas against a per capita costing (i.e. work out what the funding per person would be and determine whether or not this would be a reasonable amount to give the BBC(.

Free re-use of public sector data

Information collected by public sector bodies in the course of the work, including those available under freedom of information leg should be available for free re-use by the public and organisations..

Why is this idea important?

Information collected by public sector bodies in the course of the work, including those available under freedom of information leg should be available for free re-use by the public and organisations..

Public sector pay linking

Very simple really, link all public sector pay rises to MP's pay rises.

If they vote themselves 5% all other public sector workers get 5%, no ifs, no buts and no exceptions.

Why should MP's be allowed to treat themselves as a special class of people that are not subject to the same rules and regulations as everybody else?

It's fair.

It's easy to understand.

Why is this idea important?

Very simple really, link all public sector pay rises to MP's pay rises.

If they vote themselves 5% all other public sector workers get 5%, no ifs, no buts and no exceptions.

Why should MP's be allowed to treat themselves as a special class of people that are not subject to the same rules and regulations as everybody else?

It's fair.

It's easy to understand.

Limit Public Pensions

Public Pensions should fall into a number of categories;

  1. Full final salary pensions – Nurses / Firefighters / Police / Armed Foreces regardless of service linked to earnings.
  2. Existing / Ex Prime Ministers Final Salary Pension.
  3. All other public jobs (for example MP's, civil servant, etc) go onto Money Purchase Schemes.

 

Why is this idea important?

Public Pensions should fall into a number of categories;

  1. Full final salary pensions – Nurses / Firefighters / Police / Armed Foreces regardless of service linked to earnings.
  2. Existing / Ex Prime Ministers Final Salary Pension.
  3. All other public jobs (for example MP's, civil servant, etc) go onto Money Purchase Schemes.

 

Cap NHS salaries from £30k not £21k

21k is not a large salary to survive on, especially for single people, so why start capping small salaries within the NHS? 30k on the other hand is a good amount to survive on even if you are single, so why are those on small/average salaries being penalised?

Why is this idea important?

21k is not a large salary to survive on, especially for single people, so why start capping small salaries within the NHS? 30k on the other hand is a good amount to survive on even if you are single, so why are those on small/average salaries being penalised?

Train and appriase public sector employees on commercial practices

1) The personal objectives of public sector administrators, junior managers and above should include how commercial they have been  

2) Basic online training videos should be provided for employees covering what the appropriate commerical cultural values are and technical awareness of best commercial practices e.g. how to manage supplier relationships, how to specify supplier requirements, how to conduct fair and open supplier tenders etc.

Nothing gold plated is needed – videos can be published on youtube  with a maximum budget of £100k (based on experience, this is enough to produce a series of training videos ).  It will pay back thousands of times over with results starting immediately.

Why is this idea important?

1) The personal objectives of public sector administrators, junior managers and above should include how commercial they have been  

2) Basic online training videos should be provided for employees covering what the appropriate commerical cultural values are and technical awareness of best commercial practices e.g. how to manage supplier relationships, how to specify supplier requirements, how to conduct fair and open supplier tenders etc.

Nothing gold plated is needed – videos can be published on youtube  with a maximum budget of £100k (based on experience, this is enough to produce a series of training videos ).  It will pay back thousands of times over with results starting immediately.

Prevent discrination against non-public-sector candidates applying for public sector jobs

There are a lot of public sector jobs advertised that discriminate against non-public-sector candidates.

For example you need to be a member of a professional body which is only for public-sector employees, or you need to have experience of a particular piece of computer software that is only used in the public-sector.

There is also the practice of tailoring the job requirements to an existing incubant. For example for a £30k job there was a long list of not very relevant requirements one of which was a Phd. I suspect this job had already been filled.

This practice locks in blinkered public-sector thinking and prevents new ideas entering the public sector.

Why is this idea important?

There are a lot of public sector jobs advertised that discriminate against non-public-sector candidates.

For example you need to be a member of a professional body which is only for public-sector employees, or you need to have experience of a particular piece of computer software that is only used in the public-sector.

There is also the practice of tailoring the job requirements to an existing incubant. For example for a £30k job there was a long list of not very relevant requirements one of which was a Phd. I suspect this job had already been filled.

This practice locks in blinkered public-sector thinking and prevents new ideas entering the public sector.

too many meetings and emails

Despite views to the contrary, many managers in the public sector are working hard to improve services.  However, they do not work smartly or always spend their time wisely.  If meetings were limited to two days per week in every public sector organisation, with the rest of the time being spent on actually doing something then things would get done much more quickly.  Sometimes, it can take a year of people meeting to talk about something before anything gets done.  Limiting meetings would force managers to think about why they were meeting, whether a meeting was absolutely necessary and would limit the time that people met for.  Hopefully this would result in improved chairing of meetings which presently allow meetings to start late and and run over time. 

Similarly, limiting the number of emails public sector managers are permitted to send would have the same effect.

Why is this idea important?

Despite views to the contrary, many managers in the public sector are working hard to improve services.  However, they do not work smartly or always spend their time wisely.  If meetings were limited to two days per week in every public sector organisation, with the rest of the time being spent on actually doing something then things would get done much more quickly.  Sometimes, it can take a year of people meeting to talk about something before anything gets done.  Limiting meetings would force managers to think about why they were meeting, whether a meeting was absolutely necessary and would limit the time that people met for.  Hopefully this would result in improved chairing of meetings which presently allow meetings to start late and and run over time. 

Similarly, limiting the number of emails public sector managers are permitted to send would have the same effect.

Too Many Chiefs, Not Enough Injuns

It is quite obvious that in order to save money, the Government have to reduce jobs in the public sector. Local councils, the NHS, education currently are all suffer from over-management. The old joke about one council workman digging a hole in the road, while three managers, plus now of course the obligatory Health and Safety expert, stand and watch holding their clipboards is sadly today very true, and can longer be afforded. We need staff to actually do the job in hand. Too many justify their positions simply overseeing others, compiling useless statistics, attending 'important' meetings etc. The per head savings would also be greater for management reduction, so less jobs would be lost.

When considering staff reductions therefore, I suggest lay-offs should fall heaviest on the management/administration, thus keeping more of those who actually get the job done whilst making the greatest cost savings.

Why is this idea important?

It is quite obvious that in order to save money, the Government have to reduce jobs in the public sector. Local councils, the NHS, education currently are all suffer from over-management. The old joke about one council workman digging a hole in the road, while three managers, plus now of course the obligatory Health and Safety expert, stand and watch holding their clipboards is sadly today very true, and can longer be afforded. We need staff to actually do the job in hand. Too many justify their positions simply overseeing others, compiling useless statistics, attending 'important' meetings etc. The per head savings would also be greater for management reduction, so less jobs would be lost.

When considering staff reductions therefore, I suggest lay-offs should fall heaviest on the management/administration, thus keeping more of those who actually get the job done whilst making the greatest cost savings.

Stop having premium rate 0871 numbers for government departments

If the government are cutting back on services, then we know that we are going to be held up on the phone for a long time hoping that someone will answer us, when we ring up the DWP or the Tax Office,  that now takes on adverage over an hour to get seen to.

Now when you are on a low income,  trying to contact Jobcentreplus, or the tax office is essential communication, and for the departments to be profiteering on this type of thing is completely wrong.

The call operatives won't call you back, and more often than not, you get halfway though either the conversation before you have to start all over again with someone else, as you just spoke to the front line desk, instead of the actual advisor.  You are lucky if you don't get cut off handing over and you have to keep repeating yourself over and over again, which often increases  the cost of the call.

Taxation, the jobcentreplus, NHS hospitals, social services, and Tax Offices are essential to every person in this country, and if you will be closing local offices in favor of call centres, then at least be fair and have at least a local call rate, or even a free number.

Why is this idea important?

If the government are cutting back on services, then we know that we are going to be held up on the phone for a long time hoping that someone will answer us, when we ring up the DWP or the Tax Office,  that now takes on adverage over an hour to get seen to.

Now when you are on a low income,  trying to contact Jobcentreplus, or the tax office is essential communication, and for the departments to be profiteering on this type of thing is completely wrong.

The call operatives won't call you back, and more often than not, you get halfway though either the conversation before you have to start all over again with someone else, as you just spoke to the front line desk, instead of the actual advisor.  You are lucky if you don't get cut off handing over and you have to keep repeating yourself over and over again, which often increases  the cost of the call.

Taxation, the jobcentreplus, NHS hospitals, social services, and Tax Offices are essential to every person in this country, and if you will be closing local offices in favor of call centres, then at least be fair and have at least a local call rate, or even a free number.

Bring public sector pay and conditions inline with private sector

Public sector pay and conditions need to be brought back in line with the private sectior. The culture of excess of large salaries and gold plated pensions for comparible jobs in the private sector makes it difficult for some small and medium businesses compete for the best people.

Why is this idea important?

Public sector pay and conditions need to be brought back in line with the private sectior. The culture of excess of large salaries and gold plated pensions for comparible jobs in the private sector makes it difficult for some small and medium businesses compete for the best people.

get rid of NOMS and all of its bureaucracy

 

the national offender management model was created and implemented to join up the prison and probation services. For those of us working within these services, we know it has created nothing more than an extra layer of ineffective bureaucracy that does nothing to achieve the real purpose of these services (punishment, protection, rehabilitation etc).

My idea is simple:

Repeal the legislation that has brought NOMS into being, get rid of the huge central machine that adds little value (and certainly not value for money) and put the money into front line services.

 

 

Why is this idea important?

 

the national offender management model was created and implemented to join up the prison and probation services. For those of us working within these services, we know it has created nothing more than an extra layer of ineffective bureaucracy that does nothing to achieve the real purpose of these services (punishment, protection, rehabilitation etc).

My idea is simple:

Repeal the legislation that has brought NOMS into being, get rid of the huge central machine that adds little value (and certainly not value for money) and put the money into front line services.

 

 

Remove “Windows tax” on new computers

This "law" has not been created by the government, but has been established by a corporation which has created a monopoly in the software and computing industries.

In a country where values such as consumer freedom, innovation, free trade and competition are held with utmost importance, why is one technology firm allowed to carry-out practices which are essentially illegal?

There have been many anti-trust suits filed and won against Microsoft by the EU and the USA, but these practices continue.

When one purchases a new PC, one is forced to buy Microsoft Windows for £99-230. This is included in the price of the computer and the consumer has no choice in the matter. The UELA then states that the consumer may receive a refund if the software is not used, but this is almost impossible to attain and there have been only a handful of cases in the UK where consumers have received a refund for their unused software.

Microsoft then creates a further grievance to the consumer by not including office software (which is essential on any computer) and making its operating system susceptible to viruses. Individuals or businesses then have to pay £130-430 for office software and £50 a year for antivirus software subscriptions. Consumers should have the option to chose not to buy Windows or these products and chose a free operating system (Linux, BSD, OpenSolaris).

These costs are then replicated in the public sector. Taxpayers are being forced to pay for these software licenses on all computers used in the public sector. If schools, hospitals, the police etc. switched to Free and Open Source Software, it could save the taxpayer a bundle and the money could be put to better uses such as employing more staff in schools or making computers available to children with learning disabilities.

The French police lowered its IT costs by 70% by switching to Linux – http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2009/03/french-police-saves-millions-of-euros-by-adopting-ubuntu.ars

Small businesses could also benefit from lowering IT costs, especially in these tough financial times.

The solution: remove this de-facto law/tax by creating a new law that prohibits hardware vendors from bundling software with computers. Individuals/businesses/government would then have the choice between purchasing software or using free software.

Why is this idea important?

This "law" has not been created by the government, but has been established by a corporation which has created a monopoly in the software and computing industries.

In a country where values such as consumer freedom, innovation, free trade and competition are held with utmost importance, why is one technology firm allowed to carry-out practices which are essentially illegal?

There have been many anti-trust suits filed and won against Microsoft by the EU and the USA, but these practices continue.

When one purchases a new PC, one is forced to buy Microsoft Windows for £99-230. This is included in the price of the computer and the consumer has no choice in the matter. The UELA then states that the consumer may receive a refund if the software is not used, but this is almost impossible to attain and there have been only a handful of cases in the UK where consumers have received a refund for their unused software.

Microsoft then creates a further grievance to the consumer by not including office software (which is essential on any computer) and making its operating system susceptible to viruses. Individuals or businesses then have to pay £130-430 for office software and £50 a year for antivirus software subscriptions. Consumers should have the option to chose not to buy Windows or these products and chose a free operating system (Linux, BSD, OpenSolaris).

These costs are then replicated in the public sector. Taxpayers are being forced to pay for these software licenses on all computers used in the public sector. If schools, hospitals, the police etc. switched to Free and Open Source Software, it could save the taxpayer a bundle and the money could be put to better uses such as employing more staff in schools or making computers available to children with learning disabilities.

The French police lowered its IT costs by 70% by switching to Linux – http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2009/03/french-police-saves-millions-of-euros-by-adopting-ubuntu.ars

Small businesses could also benefit from lowering IT costs, especially in these tough financial times.

The solution: remove this de-facto law/tax by creating a new law that prohibits hardware vendors from bundling software with computers. Individuals/businesses/government would then have the choice between purchasing software or using free software.

Public Sector economic, efficient, and effective spending efficiencies

Public Sector Costs Reductions without threatening standards of essential and desirable services deliveries by authorising vetted Arms Length Inspectors(-with ENHANCED CRB Check Certificates) from outside the public sector to visit without notice for optimum verification of all claims and reports.

Re-appraisal of re-introducing The Rate of Return on/of Capital Employed for some Performance Measurement in The Public Sector.  The previous government abolished it in 1997/1998.  Note that the private secor has profit as some measure of performance but the public sector has NOTHING comparable.

Arrest continuing wastages of public funds within The NHS; and, misappropriations of Overseas Aid by corrupt recipient governments.   Re-appraise ringfencing and protecting both from cuts – this only condones continuations of mismanagement and maladministration.

Quangos such as local LINks which cannot demonstrate cost-effectiveness with added value contributions(-which the elected and appointed cannot do) should be shut down, particularly those which have been discreetly hijacked by agents for sellers of goods and services to the NHS and Social Services.

 

STRENGTHEN, ENCOURAGE, PROTECT STATUTORILY FUND, AND, REWARD ETHICAL WHISTLEBLOWERS.

Why is this idea important?

Public Sector Costs Reductions without threatening standards of essential and desirable services deliveries by authorising vetted Arms Length Inspectors(-with ENHANCED CRB Check Certificates) from outside the public sector to visit without notice for optimum verification of all claims and reports.

Re-appraisal of re-introducing The Rate of Return on/of Capital Employed for some Performance Measurement in The Public Sector.  The previous government abolished it in 1997/1998.  Note that the private secor has profit as some measure of performance but the public sector has NOTHING comparable.

Arrest continuing wastages of public funds within The NHS; and, misappropriations of Overseas Aid by corrupt recipient governments.   Re-appraise ringfencing and protecting both from cuts – this only condones continuations of mismanagement and maladministration.

Quangos such as local LINks which cannot demonstrate cost-effectiveness with added value contributions(-which the elected and appointed cannot do) should be shut down, particularly those which have been discreetly hijacked by agents for sellers of goods and services to the NHS and Social Services.

 

STRENGTHEN, ENCOURAGE, PROTECT STATUTORILY FUND, AND, REWARD ETHICAL WHISTLEBLOWERS.

Withdraw 2.5 additional bank holidays from public sector workers

Public sector workers still get 2.5 more bank holidays than the rest of the working population.  They get days for Christmas and the Queen's Birthday and 0.5 for Maundy Thursday.  No one else in the private or 3rd sectors gets these.  They are outdated and yet another example of how the public sector is out of step with everyone else.

Why is this idea important?

Public sector workers still get 2.5 more bank holidays than the rest of the working population.  They get days for Christmas and the Queen's Birthday and 0.5 for Maundy Thursday.  No one else in the private or 3rd sectors gets these.  They are outdated and yet another example of how the public sector is out of step with everyone else.

Amend health service Consultant private practice rules

Hospital Consultants are currently allowed to conduct private practice.  Whilst this is arguably fair, rules should be imposed around this as currently the NHS is being strangled by greedy medics who flout the rules which is on a par with the national MP Expenses scandal.

It is not uncommon for a hospital Consultant to be off-site doing private practice work (earning perhaps £1k for a half day work) whilst they should be on-site in their NHS hospital doing study or admin tasks.  They are therefore being paid by the NHS for time and work that is not being done, meanwhile they are off-site earning private income.  This has the effect of reducing the work the hospital can do (as the medic is not available) and increasing waiting lists … which ironically creates a need for private practice facilities!  Is this fraud?  Arguably so.  Would other NHS staff be allowed to work elsewhere whilst they should be onsite doing their (paid) core NHS role? 

Any NHS Consultant should be restricted to doing private practice to a set % of their NHS contracted time, perhaps 10%.  They should be made to publish in annual accounts copies of their defined NHS work plans (contracts) and be made to submit a monthly timesheet that they sign.  This should be audited and any instance of private practice work being found to occur in NHS time result in disciplinary and fine. 

For info, the bottom of payscale for an NHS consultant is around £80k.  Typically with allowances it is not uncommon for this to be 50% more, ie £120k.  Some are more than this.  This is then topped up by private work too.  Extra work for the NHS (eg on a Saturday AM) is paid at a lump sum of around £650 whereas a nurse would be paid a multiple (time and a half) of their hourly rate.  Why is there a disparity?  This is not equitable.

The taxpayer is unknowingly funding working practices that allow some people to financially gain hugely whilst strangling the ability to deliver healthcare.

Why is this idea important?

Hospital Consultants are currently allowed to conduct private practice.  Whilst this is arguably fair, rules should be imposed around this as currently the NHS is being strangled by greedy medics who flout the rules which is on a par with the national MP Expenses scandal.

It is not uncommon for a hospital Consultant to be off-site doing private practice work (earning perhaps £1k for a half day work) whilst they should be on-site in their NHS hospital doing study or admin tasks.  They are therefore being paid by the NHS for time and work that is not being done, meanwhile they are off-site earning private income.  This has the effect of reducing the work the hospital can do (as the medic is not available) and increasing waiting lists … which ironically creates a need for private practice facilities!  Is this fraud?  Arguably so.  Would other NHS staff be allowed to work elsewhere whilst they should be onsite doing their (paid) core NHS role? 

Any NHS Consultant should be restricted to doing private practice to a set % of their NHS contracted time, perhaps 10%.  They should be made to publish in annual accounts copies of their defined NHS work plans (contracts) and be made to submit a monthly timesheet that they sign.  This should be audited and any instance of private practice work being found to occur in NHS time result in disciplinary and fine. 

For info, the bottom of payscale for an NHS consultant is around £80k.  Typically with allowances it is not uncommon for this to be 50% more, ie £120k.  Some are more than this.  This is then topped up by private work too.  Extra work for the NHS (eg on a Saturday AM) is paid at a lump sum of around £650 whereas a nurse would be paid a multiple (time and a half) of their hourly rate.  Why is there a disparity?  This is not equitable.

The taxpayer is unknowingly funding working practices that allow some people to financially gain hugely whilst strangling the ability to deliver healthcare.

Removal of NuLabours falsely created public sector jobs.

In an underhanded attempt to remove people from unemployment, new Labour massively changed how the TAx, benefits and tax credit sytems worked.

They created various different agencies (all of whome seem unable to communicate between themselves) to deal with each individual aspect of our tax, benefits tax credits etc.

This obviously created millions of jobs, which looked like they were taking people out of unemployment, at the time.

Now we're a few years down the line, it's pretty obvious that not only are we as a Country having trouble affording all these departments and jobs in the public sector, but it's also extremely confusing/frustrating and plain difficult to arrange anything with these various agencies.

The Tax credit people don't know how much you earn, the benefits agency doesn't know how much tax credit's you're getting and the HMRC, well they couldn't care less as long as they get their pound of flesh.

What was wrong with working it all out through your tax code? One organization who deals with your income tax, credits and benefits all based on a circumstance relative tax code?

low income and young children? – high tax free earnings allowance (tax code).

high income, no kids – low tax free earnings allowance (tax code)

 

Sure we'll need to lay off a lot of unneccesary public sector workers, but they really shouldn't have been employed in the first place, it was all a "trick" to bring the unemployment figure down, a trick we can't afford to support any longer.

Why is this idea important?

In an underhanded attempt to remove people from unemployment, new Labour massively changed how the TAx, benefits and tax credit sytems worked.

They created various different agencies (all of whome seem unable to communicate between themselves) to deal with each individual aspect of our tax, benefits tax credits etc.

This obviously created millions of jobs, which looked like they were taking people out of unemployment, at the time.

Now we're a few years down the line, it's pretty obvious that not only are we as a Country having trouble affording all these departments and jobs in the public sector, but it's also extremely confusing/frustrating and plain difficult to arrange anything with these various agencies.

The Tax credit people don't know how much you earn, the benefits agency doesn't know how much tax credit's you're getting and the HMRC, well they couldn't care less as long as they get their pound of flesh.

What was wrong with working it all out through your tax code? One organization who deals with your income tax, credits and benefits all based on a circumstance relative tax code?

low income and young children? – high tax free earnings allowance (tax code).

high income, no kids – low tax free earnings allowance (tax code)

 

Sure we'll need to lay off a lot of unneccesary public sector workers, but they really shouldn't have been employed in the first place, it was all a "trick" to bring the unemployment figure down, a trick we can't afford to support any longer.