Eastern police staff are being urged to reject a government pay freeze.
The government is offering most police staff 0%, with a rise of £250 for those on less than £24,000.
Civilian staff union UNISON branded the offer “insulting,” saying it fails to reward staff for their work during the pandemic or make up for a decade of below-inflation pay awards.
Police staff have seen their wages rise just 12.2% in the last decade while the cost of living has risen 27.6%.
And with retail price index inflation now at 3.9%, UNISON warns police staff pay is going backwards.
The consultation runs until 6 September, after which staff may be balloted on industrial action.
UNISON Eastern regional organiser Natalie Platts said: “The Home Secretary thanked police staff for their work during lockdown, but thanks alone will not pay the bills. Police staff are angry and deserve more than this insult.
“Across the country, the public have taken time to appreciate the pivotal role police and other emergency and care services played bringing the pandemic under control.
“But that commitment and sacrifice has been undermined with the continuation of a decade of austerity.
“This is a cruel and unnecessary government pay freeze. There is no reward for staff keeping communities safe during the pandemic and the risks staff took coming to work during the lockdowns.”