Date: Tuesday 12 January 2016
Sturgeon must act to protect local government services, says UNISON
UNISON local branches across Scotland are calling on Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland, to meet UNISON members to hear about the damage Government policies are having on local government and to discuss the future of local services.
UNISON is the biggest trade union in local government and branch secretaries from across Scotland have written to the First Minister calling on her to intervene. UNISON has real and acute concerns about the state of local government in Scotland, brought on by both UK Government austerity and Scottish Government policy towards local government.
Douglas Black, UNISON regional organiser for local government in Scotland said:
"John Swinney’s spending review in December 2015 was met with disbelief by UNISON members. Local Government has borne the brunt of public sector cuts since 2008. Of the 50,000 jobs lost in devolved services, 40,000 have been in local government. And John Swinney’s latest budget means we will see many more cuts in local services and upwards of 10,000 more job losses.
"The situation is serious. Services are being privatised, community based services are stopping, grants to the voluntary sector are being slashed, caring services can provide only minimum client contact time, and we are seeing significant rises in charges for other services such as burials, school meals and leisure pursuits. This cannot continue. The First Minister must meet UNISON members to hear about the real damage being caused and to discuss the future of Scotland’s local services."
UNISON is the public services union, it is the biggest union in Scotland and the biggest union in local government.
Douglas Black, regional organiser, 07958 121851
Danny Phillips, communications officer, 07944 664110