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Prices still rising at double the target rate – Usdaw calls for a new deal for workers to tackle the cost of living crisis

Date: 20 December 2023 Retail trade union Usdaw is calling for the Government to address the longstanding cost of living crisis, after today’s inflation figures show that prices are rising at almost double the Government’s 2% target rate The Retail Prices Index (RPI) rate dipped to 5.3%, the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rate eased to 3.9%.
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “With less than a week until Christmas, families are still facing eye-watering price increases on everyday essentials as inflation remains double the Government’s target rate. They have completely failed to tackle a cost of living crisis that has impacted working people for two and a half years.
“Inflation broke through the target rate in May 2021 and peaked in double figures for six months. That has led to whole lot of pain for working people. Continuing very high price increases, particularly on food items, leave too many workers struggling to make ends meet. Food inflation remains above the headline rates at 9.1%, which has a severe impact on low-paid workers struggling to make ends meet.
“Despite growth in regular pay of 7.3%, low-paid workers feel no better off. Short-term support measures with ongoing cost of living pressures are only sticking plasters and are not enough to help those struggling to make ends meet. Our members need lasting solutions with a new deal for workers. Only Labour is pledged to deliver the new deal Usdaw has long campaigned for. Only Labour has the policies and ideas that can put the country back on track.”
The next Labour Government will deliver a new deal that includes:
  • Making work pay with a genuine living wage that people can actually live on.
  • Banning zero-hours contracts.
  • Ending fire and rehire.
  • Giving workers basic rights from day one.
  • Going further and faster in closing the gender pay gap.
  • Making work more family friendly.
  • Tackling sexual harassment.
  • Ensuring that unions can stand up for their members.
  • Boosting collective bargaining, to improve workers’ pay, terms and conditions. 
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK's fifth biggest trade union with around 360,000 members. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemical industry and other trades www.usdaw.org.uk
ONS inflation and price indices: www.ons.gov.uk/economy/inflationandpriceindices
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion

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The official website of the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers