Responding to the First Minister’s announcement of the Scottish Government’s Programme for Government, Grahame Smith, Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) General Secretary, said:
“The STUC welcomes much of what the First Minister had to say in announcing her first Programme for Government in particular the decision to put ‘fair work and an inclusive jobs market’ at the heart of the Scottish Government’s economic programme for the year ahead.
“The STUC looks forward to working with the Scottish Government to ensure that the Fair Work Convention grows into a credible, influential and longstanding institution. We also support introduction of the Business Pledge but note that it must be effectively monitored to really drive behavioural change.
“Whilst welcoming the continued focus on the importance of the care sector and childcare in our society, both the Government and the opposition still have some way to go in capturing all of the benefits and the shifts in policy and resources which will be needed, including in investment in a properly qualified, properly supported, workforce.
“The STUC also welcomes the commitment to promote the Living Wage in the private sector and looks forward to being involved in the proposed summit with business to promote the Living Wage. We will also press the Scottish Government to bring forward statutory guidance on how workforce-related matters – including the Living Wage - should be taken into account in public contracts far more quickly than has been outlined in today’s speech.
“Although the STUC remains very concerned over the impact of the Council tax freeze, announcement of an independent commission to examine alternatives to the Council tax is welcome if long overdue”.
For further information contact Stephen Boyd 0141 337 8100 or Dave Moxham 0141 337 8100