REDDITCH’S MP has defended a rise in pay as an ‘independent decision’ and is the ‘average increase in pay for public sector employees’.

MPs are set to get a 2.9 per cent pay increase from April, bringing the overall salary from £84,144 to £86,584.

The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, which sets pay for MPs, confirmed the rise will take effect from April 1. 

The salary increase for MPs comes as households across the country grapple with cost-of-living pressures, with the government also facing a wave of industrial action by nurses, railway workers, teachers and others as part of ongoing disputes over pay.

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However, Rachel Maclean, MP for Redditch, said ‘it is right so’ that IPSA decide MP’s salaries and to put the pay ‘into perspective  she is ‘paid far less than the chief executives of our local councils and the leaders of trade unions.’

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She added: “MPs cannot claim for any food or drink.

“I only claim for the rent I need to stay in London in order to do my job, and never anything else associated with the costs of living in London for part of the week.

“All other costs such as utility bills and broadband, which I need for work, and items like furniture and TV licenses are all paid for out of my own pocket. 

“When I’m not at home in Redditch, I need somewhere to stay in London in order to represent my constituents in the House of Commons.

“I need to be in Westminster in order to vote and deliver on the promises my constituents re-elected me to deliver. IPSA enables MPs to cover the costs of accommodation.”

Ms Maclean said when she travels between Redditch, where she has lived for five years, and London she travels in standard class.