| Monday 13 Dec 2004
UNISON pledges support for fight against cuts in public service
Mike Kirby Scottish Convenor of UNISONScotland, will tell the Anti
Cuts Rally in Dunfermline today (Sat) that Scotland's largest union
supports its civil service colleagues in their fight against cuts
In a separate statement, Dave Prentis, UNISON's General Secretary
has also pledged the union's support for a united response to the
Government's proposals to attack public sector pensions, including
industrial action if needed.
At the rally in Dunfermline, after the demonstration called by
the PCS, Mike will say: "I bring support from UNISON and the STUC.
As unions representing public service workers we all seem to be
under attack from a government which threatens the jobs and pensions
of those who work in public services."
"It is cheap electoral politics to try and shoot the Tories' fox
with a Dutch auction over essential public services and our members
jobs and livelihoods. These proposals will do nothing to address
problems of recruitment and retention in the public services, where
money is being paid to private firms and shareholders through PFI
He called on the Scottish Executive to clarify their intentions
behind the so-called 'efficiency savings' and pledged joint action
through the STUC to keep the pressure on Scottish Ministers.
"Efficiency will not be achieved by cutting the jobs of those
who deliver services." He said, "We need to increase resources and
pay to secure staff. Currently £5.8bn is being wasted on PFI/PPP
schemes. This sum dwarfs any savings targets set by Ministers."
Proposals to cut pension scheme provisions across the public services
also came under attack from the UK union's General Secretary. Speaking
before a joint meeting on Monday in London, Dave Prentis said
"Make no mistake - we will not sit back and allow them to tear
our members' pensions to shreds. Today's meeting will decide on
a united response. There is no time to waste and we will start consulting
our members in Local Government about the possibility of industrial
action next year."
Note For Editors and Picture Desks: The PCS March will lead
off from the public park at the foot of Viewfield Terrace, Dunfermline
at 11.30am on Saturday 11 Dec. The Rally will be in the Queen Anne
High School, Broomhead, Dunfermline at 12 noon. For Further Information
Please Contact: Mike Kirby (Scottish Convenor) 07803 952 261(m)
Chris Bartter (Communications Officer): 07715 583 729(m)