The Conservative Party chairman has warned the army might be called in to deal with strike disruption as he accused unions of playing into Vladimir Putin's hands and dividing society.
Nadhim Zahawi's comments come as a wave of industrial action looms across multiple sectors in the run up to Christmas.
Nurses are set to hold their biggest strike in NHS history this month over pay and conditions, while a number of other workers in vital services, including Royal Mail staff, lecturers and teachers, are also taking action.
Making assurances that the government has all of this in hand, Zahawi told the BBC's Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg show: "We are operationalising contingency plans with a surge capacity to make sure people are protected."
The minister without portfolio said the UK's Cobra committee for national emergencies is keeping a close eye on the situation, and that military personnel have been trained-up and are ready to fill the gaps during strikes if required.
However, Zahawi didn't say anything about concessions or new offers being made to prevent the strikes going ahead in the first place.
The wave of industrial disputes come as CPI inflation in the UK sits at 11.1%, mainly due to soaring fuel and food prices.
Drawing attention to causes outside the country by taking aim at Russian leader Vladimir Putin, Zahawi said: "President Putin has used energy as a weapon because he's failing in his illegal war in Ukraine, and he knows that energy is a weapon, so gas prices have spiked.
"The OBR (Office for Budget Responsibility) have said in the autumn statement that the bulk of the reason we have this high inflation, at 11%, is because of energy."
However, there are a number of other factors at play, including the COVID pandemic disrupting supply chains, which then struggled to meet a huge boom in consumer demand once lockdown restrictions were eased.
Putting that aside, public sector workers in the UK will argue that their pay has been held back for far longer and that their dispute goes back further than the current inflationary surge.
The Royal College of Nursing has demanded a 19% pay rise, compared to the government's offer of 3%, while teachers are currently asking for 12%, instead of the current 5% on the table.
But Zahawi argued that the way to deal with the cost of living crisis is "by bearing down on inflation, and therefore being disciplined about public and private sector pay".
Also appearing on the show was Labour's shadow education secretary Bridget Phillipson, who said teachers are "right to argue for a better deal in terms of pay, but also wider terms of conditions".
She added: "When I speak to teachers across our country, and school support staff too, they tell me how demoralised they are, how they feel that they've been insulted and derided by the government during the pandemic, when I think parents know how hard they've been working, and they want a better deal.
"The unions are desperate to sit down around the table and have a conversation with ministers around this, who are refusing to discuss pay.
"If I were education secretary, I'd be sat around the table trying to get a compromise. It's often somewhere in the middle, and that’s why it's a process of negotiation, it's about pay, but it's also about terms and conditions.
"What teachers tell me they feel is that they're demoralised, the government hasn't had their back, and they want to know that there is hope for the future."