Thursday 18 February
Commenting on today's report from the Accounts Commission on Scottish Local Government, Dougie Black, UNISON's regional organizer and lead negotiator for local council workers said: "It is disappointing that the Accounts Commission seem to have missed the point again.
"Shared services cost money in the short term, they don't save it; cuts to so-called 'back room' service just mean hauling front line workers away from service delivery to cover background work; and 'alternative delivery' means either expensive profit-driven private provision or services provided on the cheap by cutting resources, training, pay and conditions.
"The real question is - why do bodies like the Accounts Commission not talk to the people who use these services - all of us - the people of Scotland. We didn't cause the recession, we didn't drain the public coffers of money to prop up the banks - why should our services pay for that when the bankers who are responsible are still awarding themselves huge bonuses?
"Local Government is already facing cuts of over £300m, and job losses of 3,500 plus. That is why UNISON is running its Public Works campaign, is contacting local communities who depend on these services, and organising a 'Stop the Cuts, March and Rally' in Glasgow on April 10, as the next stage in that campaign."
Note for editors:
Details on UNISON's Public Works Campaign are available on http://www.unison-scotland.org.uk/publicworks/
UNISON's Alternative Budget can be found at http://www.unison.org.uk/million/resources/Alternative_Budget.pdf