Date 30 April 2007
Scottish people think democracy best for public services
Over three quarters of Scottish people think elected bodies are
the best for managing Scotland's public services UNISON, Scotland's
largest Public Service union, today announced.
The union released the result of an opinion poll carried out by
the research organisation Ipsos MORI,that shows 77% of Scots think
services are best managed by elected bodies rather than private
The poll was commissioned as part of the union's campaign to Revitalise
Scotland's Public Services, which will be running up until the election,
Matt Smith, UNISON's Scottish Secretary said "This poll result
shows that the Scottish people care who runs their services. They
do not think that either the private sector - like Thames Water,
or Consort Healthcare or unaccountable Trusts like Culture and Sport,
Glasgow - deliver better service than democratically accountable
bodies like local councils.
"Politicians of all parties need to be clear in the final days
before the election that the people of Scotland value their say
in running their services. Removing that democratic right by hiving
off services to the private sector or taking control away from their
elected members by Housing Stock Transfer, or to Trusts is not popular."
Matt went on to attack local income tax for removing the final
financial control from elected authorities - taking away councils'
"Suggesting that a local income tax replaces the council tax, not
only threatens increased taxes for working families." He said, "But
such a tax would need to be collected nationally. In the SNP's case
it would be set nationally which removes any remaining control local
councillors have to raise revenue. Councils would no longer be accountable
to you and me for their tax-raising."
Note for Editors:-
1)UNISON's manifesto Revitalising our Public Services, is on the
UNISON Scotland website. www.unison-scotland.org.uk/revitalise
along with other election material.
2)The poll was carried out by Ipsos MORI who surveyed a sample
of 807 adults aged 18+ interviewed by telephone throughout Scotland,
between 13-15 April 2007.
The question and results were: "On the whole, do you think public
services are best managed by bodies elected by the public, for example
by local councils, or by private companies? Public 77% Private 15%
Don't know 8%
For Further Information Please Contact: Matt Smith (Scottish
Secretary) 07771 548 997 (m) Dave Watson (Scottish Organiser - Policy)
07958 122 409(m) Chris Bartter (Communications Officer) 0771 558