George Osborne has condemned the country to decades of hardship and the people to unnecessary wholesale unemployment, with his “ideologically driven, no hope, no ideas, cuts CSR” warned UNISON.
Following the Chancellor’s Comprehensive Spending Review, Dave Prentis, General Secretary of UNISON, said: “For CSR read Cuts Strangle Recovery. The Tories’ ideologically driven, no hope, no ideas, cuts agenda is poisoning the country’s chances of recovery, infecting the public sector and costing jobs in the private sector. The much-trailed cuts come as no great surprise, but the scale is a devastating blow to communities who depend on essential public services.
“This Saturday will see thousands of people take to the streets of Edinburgh to demonstrate against the cuts and send a clear message that there is a better way.”
The union says that some 60,000 public sector and 65,000 private sector jobs could go in Scotland because of these cuts. They could cost the Treasury around £500m in lost tax revenue and £640m in increased benefit payments - adding to the annual deficit and almost entirely cancelling out the saving to the public sector pay-bill.
In Scotland, the Barnett consequentials are every bit as serious as expected. In practice the impact will be greater because councils and health boards have additional costs over and above these allocations.
Councils and health boards have to live in the real world where inflation is more than double the nominal Treasury assumption.