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Democracy Investment Fairness

UNISON's manifesto for Scotland's public services

UNISON's Revitalise principles are:

Democracy Investment Fairness

Progress in applying the Principles

These principles have gained welcome support across the political spectrum and there have been many examples of their application in practice.

Democracy has been strengthened by voting reform and new methods of user involvement. But we do not have the total culture change the democratic accountability principle implies.

On investment we have record funding levels and an extra £4billion in this financial year alone. The end of the two tier workforce for new PPP schemes; prudential borrowing and three year service funding have been positive developments. However,we don't have a level playing field for PPP, and some services, notably local government, have done less well in funding terms.

There have been positive efforts to improve the recruitment and retention of public service staff. Significant increases in staffing levels in many services, pay reform, lifelong learning initiatives and action on assaults on staff have all played an important role in building staff confidence. However, there is still more to do in many of these fields including pressures to achieve equal pay and finance past discrimination settlements. Discriminatory attacks on public service pensions puts at risk many of these gains.

There has been some improvement in the co-ordination of scrutiny regimes and less rigidity in performance monitoring than elsewhere in the UK. Whilst the efficient government approach is more appropriate to Scotland than its English counterpart there remain real challenges in its implementation. Public service networks have been adopted in many contexts. Most notably as an alternative to a criminal justice quango but also through joint future, common services and clinical networks as recommended in the Kerr report. However, joint working remains a challenge as organisations break out of the silo working mentality encouraged during the Tory years.

Partnership not competition has been the positive approach in the developing Scottish public service model.This has been supported by partnership working within many public services and between the Scottish Executive and the trade unions through the Memorandum of Understanding.





UNISONScotland 2006
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