The Spending Plan policy 32: cut annual leave entitlements where overly generous

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A 2013 survey of almost 200,000 employees of 208 organisations and 391 employee groups found that the median holiday entitlement for public sector workers is 27 days compared with 25 days for manufacturing companies and public sector services organisations.

Despite some restraint in public sector pay in recent years, public sector employees still enjoy a significant pay premium over their private sector counterparts, especially when defined benefit pension schemes are included.

Given the higher pay and greater job security in the public sector, there seems little justification for more generous holiday arrangements.

Average annual leave entitlements should be brought into line with those in the private sector by capping annual leave at 25 days, plus the 8 Bank Holidays.

Doing this would mean a saving of around 0.9 per cent of the public sector pay bill which HM Treasury currently puts at £164.4 billion.

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