sexual harrassment parliament britain
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MPs will get a pay-rise of more than £2,000 from April - just as costs are set to soar for millions of their constituents around the UK.

The country faces a crisis in the cost of living, with energy bills expected to cost £700 more per year when the new price cap comes into effect in April.

Downing Street is also standing firm on its controversial plan to hike National Insurance by 1.25 percentage points in a bid to boost health funding.

But despite widespread concern over personal finances - and opposition from Boris Johnson and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer - the MPs' pay watchdog has decided to increase salaries.

The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) announced that the annual adjustment to MPs' basic pay for 2022-23 will be 2.7% - the same as the average increase in pay for public sector employees last year.

Comment: MPs don't need to accept it, they can easily create legislation to reduce their pay.

It said that would bring the overall salary from £81,932 to £84,144 from April 1, 2022.

Comment: MP salaries have gone up £18,406p in 12 years. That might not seem like that much, but public sector workers, like nurses and teachers, have not seen similar increases, despite soaring living costs, in fact, many have had to suffer pay freezes for years ostensibly because of 'austerity' measures enforced upon them by parliament following the banking crash of 2008.

Moreover, MPs already claim their salary's worth in expenses - and various other creative administrative techniques - meaning they're actually earning much, much more than the figure below; and, unsurprisingly, it was recently agreed that expenses would be increased to accommodate their staff to 'work from home'.

These are the same MPs expenses that were rocked by scandal when it was discovered that a damning number of them were charging for everything from duck moats to second homes (then rented on for a profit) to the taxpayer; note that these expenses were granted, which means that these oversight departments were complicit.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, shouldn't salaries be tied to performance?
MP salaries through the years

April 2010​ - ​£65,738
April 2011 - £65,738
April 2012 - £65,738
​April 2013 - ​£66,396
​April 2014 - ​£67,060
​May 2015 - ​£74,000 [It's notable that this was the year the Conservative party won the majority and came into power]
​April 2016 - ​£74,962
April 2017 - £76,011
April 2018 - £77,379
April 2019 - £79,468
April 2022 - £84,144

The prime minister's official spokesman said in January: "I would say we would expect restraint on matters like this given the current circumstances, but beyond that I think it's right that we let Ipsa set out their proposals as an independent body."

The spokesman said he did not believe the prime minister would be making representations on the matter.

Sir Keir said at the time: "I think that MPs do not need a pay rise and we should all be saying that we don't need that pay rise and it shouldn't go ahead.

"The mechanism is independent but I think it's for me, as Leader of the Opposition, to say that I do not think we should have that pay rise."

Last year, a pay rise was suspended due to the economic impact of the pandemic, and the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) - which sets the level of pay - stopped what would have been a £3,300 hike after coming under pressure from MPs.

Ahead of the proposed 2021 rise, more than 50 Tory MPs wrote to Ipsa calling on the body impose a pay freeze for parliamentarians.

Richard Lloyd, IPSA's Chair, said: "This is the first increase in pay for MPs in two years and follows the average of increases across the public sector last year.

"MPs play a vital role in our democracy and this is reflected in their pay.

"It is right that MPs are paid fairly for the responsibility and the unseen work they do helping their constituents, which dramatically increased last year.

"For Parliament to reflect society, it is vital that people from all walks of life can be an MP."