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Liz Truss vows to cut pay of nurses and teachers outside London in ‘levelling down’ plan

Less than 24 hours after her announcement, Truss has backtracked on the plan

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Number 10 / Flickr

Nurses, teachers and other public sector workers outside of London could face pay cuts as part of a new ‘levelling down’ plan proposed by Liz Truss.

The Conservative leader contender unveiled the plan, which she dubbed a ‘war on Whitehall waste’, last night, where she promised savings in the region of £11 billion. 

Truss claimed an estimated £8.8 billion of these savings would come from ‘adjusting’ the salaries of workers living in cheaper areas of the country.

Under this plan, they would be paid less than their counterparts in places like London and the South East, where the cost of living is significantly higher.

Number 10 / Flickr

The Truss campaign said it would initially apply to the civil service, but would be later expanded to public sector workers.

According to the BBC, Truss also proposed reducing the average civil service annual leave from twenty-seven days to twenty-five, and scrapping jobs aimed at increasing inclusion and diversity in the public sector.

The proposal has been met with fierce criticism from MPs and union chiefs, with deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner, who slammed Truss as ‘declaring war on herself’. 

Rayner wrote on Twitter today: “Liz Truss is declaring war on herself with this recipe for levelling down. A race to the bottom that would cut the pay of school and NHS workers outside London, widening the divide and punishing the North.

“This out-of-touch Tory Government’s commitment to levelling up is dead.”

Rayner added: “Liz Truss’ latest fantasy to cut the pay of NHS, school and police staff outside London during a cost of living crisis? It’a copy [and] paste job from a shady, discredited right wing pressure group that refuses to reveal who funds it.”

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has also slammed the plan, promising to ‘fight it tooth and nail’.

UPDATE: Less than twenty-four hours after her announcement, Truss has backtracked on the controversial plan following major Tory backlash. 

Truss’ team have released a statement insisting ‘current levels of public sector pay will absolutely be maintained’, adding: “Our hard-working frontline staff are the bed rock of society and there will be no proposal taken forward on regional pay boards for civil servants or public sector workers.”

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Second man arrested after girl, 6, abducted and assaulted

BREAKING: The girl was abducted on Wednesday afternoon

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GMP

A second man has been arrested on suspicion of abducting and sexually assaulting a six-year-old girl in Greater Manchester.

The man, twenty-three, remains in custody for questioning, Greater Manchester Police have confirmed.

Previously a thirty-five-year-old man was arrested, but he has since been released with no further action taken.

Officers were first called to reports of an abduction at around 4pm on Wednesday, August 17th. The child was allegedly taken into a wooded area near a disused railway in Droylsden. 

There, the girl was taken to a van where she was sexually assaulted. She was taken back to the woods before managing to find her own way to a nearby park. 

She has since been reunited with her family, and is been supported by specialist officers.

Before his release, the first suspect was questioned by detectives yesterday, who were said to be ‘keeping an open-mind’ as they continued their hunt for another man who had been ‘acting suspiciously’ in the area at the time.

Anyone with more information on the incident has been urged to contact GMP on 0161 856 9262 or LiveChat quoting incident 2270 of 17/08.

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Teen girl who died after getting into difficulty in water is named

BREAKING: The teenager’s body was recovered overnight earlier this week

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Google Maps

The teenage girl who died after getting into difficulty in a lake in Stalybridge has been named as Lucy Smith.

The fourteen-year-old’s body was recovered from water near Crowswood Drive in Stalybridge after emergency services were called out at around 6:30pm on Monday (August 15th).

Police said the body was recovered overnight and was then formally identified.

A spokesperson for the Manchester South Coroners’ Court has now confirmed that a file in relation to Lucy’s death has been passed to the coroner.

An inquest will open at a later date. Police said they do not believe there were any suspicious circumstances surrounding her death.

Detective Inspector Steven Horton, of GMP’s Tameside CID, said at the time of Lucy’s death: “Yesterday evening’s events are nothing short of devastating and my thoughts are with the friends and family of the young girl who lost her life in such awful circumstances.

“We are doing all we can to support the girl’s family at this incredibly difficult time, and we are focused on ensuring they get the answers they deserve as to how this tragedy occurred.

“From our enquiries so far, we are confident that there are no suspicious circumstances and that this is such a sad reminder of the dangers of entering open water, whatever the weather.”

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Man arrested after girl, 6, abducted and assaulted

A second man is still at large

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Google Maps & GMP

A man has been arrested on suspicion of abducting and sexually assaulting a six-year-old girl in Droylsden, though the hunt for another man continues.

Police were first called to reports of an abduction at around 4pm yesterday (August 17th). They believe the girl was taken by a man on Warne Avenue and into a wooded area near the disused railway track towards Manchester Road.

There, the girl was taken to a van where she was sexually assaulted. She was taken back to the woods before managing to find her own way to a nearby park. 

She has since been reunited with her family, and is been supported by specialist officers.

Last night, Greater Manchester Police announced that a thirty-five-year-old man had been arrested on suspicion of abduction and sexual assault.

He was taken into custody to be questioned by detectives, who are ‘keeping an open-mind’ and continuing to hunt for another man who was ‘acting suspiciously’ in the area at the time.

Police released two pictures of the man, with the second image showing him on Gainsborough Road, heading towards The Snipe with his jacket removed around thirty minutes after the incident.

Anyone who sees the man should call 999, quoting incident 2270 of 17/08/2022. Other details – including sightings on CCTV, dash cam, or doorbell footage – can be passed to police via the LiveChat facility on the website or by calling 0161 856 9262.

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