We are holding a rally in Glasgow today to highlight the cuts planned for public services in Scotland next year.
We have published a summary of cuts assessments prepared by our branches, based on the discussions they have been having with public bodies across Scotland. This shows a very different picture from the broadly standstill Scottish Budget agreed last Wednesday. In local government alone we have identified spending cuts of over £300m, that is six times greater than the cut in local government allocations in the budget. As a consequence over 3500 jobs will go from local councils next year.
For other services the budget process is much less advanced but early returns indicate a very similar picture in health, police, utilities and education.
This isn’t just a tragedy for the staff concerned. Important local services are being cut and there will be a big knock on impact on local economies. For every pound spent by public services, 64p goes back into the local economy. So job losses will multiply at a time when we are still struggling out of the recession.
Our General Secretary, Dave Prentis is coming to Glasgow for the rally. He will sum up the feelings of pubic service workers saying; “No school cleaner gambled billions on the stock exchange. None of them created this recession. Why should they be expected to pay for it?”
Spot on. Let’s here more from all political parties about pay freezes for the bankers and the neo-liberal economists whose ideology got us into this mess.