Leading Scottish politicians welcome the publication of STUC 'People's Recovery' report
Report contains new calculations highlighting that Scotland’s richest twenty families, many of whom are tax dodgers, are wealthier than 30% of Scotland’s population
Leading Scottish politicians are welcoming the publication of a new STUC report presenting a critical alternative to the Scottish and UK Government’s economic recovery strategy. ‘The People’s Recovery: A New Track for the Scottish Economy’ drew praise from representatives including Scottish Green leader Patrick Harvie, Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard and Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Fair Work and Employment) Chris Stephens MP.
The report contains new calculations highlighting that Scotland’s richest twenty families, many of whom are tax dodgers, are wealthier than 30% of Scotland’s population. The wide-ranging report contains recommendations across to ensure a green recovery, increase public investment, exert greater control through democratic public ownership, mandate fair work practices, improve social security and housing, and deliver universal public services.
Commenting on the report, STUC General Secretary Roz Foyer said:
“Coronavirus is first and foremost a public health emergency, but the damage it caused to our health, economy and way of life could have been contained. The virus exploited the cracks of a society built on decades of accumulated injustice, greed and underinvestment.
“Now, we need to learn the lessons. The task is not just to restore life as it was in 2019, but to eradicate the structural conditions that made this crisis so dangerous.
“This report aims to address that missing dimension in the UK and Scottish Government responses to the emergency. The trade union movement will work constructively to save jobs and restore a sense of normality to people’s lives. But it’s also our duty to ensure that risks are shared evenly, and that our workers and communities are never again put in harm’s way by reckless agendas of austerity and exploitation, and that we have a just transition to tackle the climate emergency. This report shows how this can work.”
Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard endorsed the report. “Scottish Labour welcomes this timely report and its commitment to wholescale reform of Scotland’s economy,” said Leonard. “As the report makes clear, the economic recovery must have the interests of workers at its core and it must deliver high-skill, high-pay and environmentally friendly jobs for Scotland.”
Welcoming the findings, Scottish Green co-leader Patrick Harvie argued that it chimed with proposals for a green jobs-led recovery. “This is a timely and necessary report from the STUC,” said Harvie. “We cannot return to the old, broken economy which included low pay for our most valued workers, insecure jobs and housing for so many and a system which put profit before people and planet. We can’t rely on private interests to make transformative change. It’s clear that we need to rebuild the public sector, which has diminished under successive governments at Westminster and Holyrood, to create a recovery which tackles the climate emergency and creates thousands of well-paid unionised jobs.”
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Fair Work and Employment) Chris Stephens MP said “This is an excellent document which challenges establishment thinking and sets out a vision for Economic Recovery, and highlights in particular why social security and employment laws need strengthened, and how delivering equality is economically beneficial. It should be read by all political parties so we can debate these ideas to take Scotland forward.”
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