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Communications Index | Press releases | Scotland inUNISON | Campaigns


Date 28 November 2005


Senior union leaders are preparing to campaign to keep Scotland's water public.

They've expressed fears that targets soon to be announced by the industry regulator could threaten the future existence of Scottish Water.

The regional secretaries of the four major Scottish trades unions today called for fair targets and adequate funding for Scottish Water for the next four years.

They've warned the Water Industry Commission that failure to get the targets right when they're announced on November 30 would mean

  • Service to customers would suffer as frontline services are cut further.
  • Public health being put at risk by a multi million pound shortfall in vital investment.
  • Scottish Water being forced to build new plants to waste public money by building plants which wont stand the test of time
  • Scottish Water being forced to go to the Competition Commission to challenge the targets at a cost of millions of pounds of public money.

An academic survey of the methods of the water regulator carried out by the trades unions has damned his comparisons with England and Wales branding them misleading and false.

In a joint union statement they said, "We will not allow unreasonable demands from the Water Industry Commission to undermine the future of a public water service in Scotland. We will fight to keep Scotland's water in public control.

"Scottish Water has proved it can match many of the private English water companies on efficiency and price. What has taken seventeen years to achieve down south has been achieved in four years in Scotland. We won't let that be ruined by the misconceived economic zeal of the regulator.

"The water regulator hasn't been known for making fair judgements in the past. We have an economic study that confirms that many of his comparisons with England and Wales are unfair and plain daft.

"We demand a level of funding that will ensure that our members can continue to improve the water industry and continue to improve the service to customers.

"The employees of Scottish Water deserve great credit for what they've achieved since the organisation was created in 2002. They also deserve a fair settlement from the regulator."


For Further Information please contact: Dave Watson (Scottish Organiser) 07787 558 410(m) Chris Bartter (Communications Officer) 0845 355 0845(w) 07715 583 729(m)