Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) General Secretary, Grahame Smith, said:
“The STUC is on record as saying that the Smith Commission proposals should have proposed greater devolution in a number of areas.
“Scottish Labour’s proposal to introduce the power to create new benefits, except in the areas in which named benefits are specifically reserved, is the correct interpretation of Smith and should have been reflected in the Command Paper. We will continue to press, in the weeks ahead, for the introduction of legislative clauses which achieve this.
“Labour’s other proposals – to extend the top-up power to include pensions and to fully devolve housing benefit - are also very welcome. There is absolutely no reason, assuming the cost of additional payments and administration is borne by the Scottish Parliament, why its powers should not be developed in this way.
“This development confirms our view that there is a continuing and very live debate over which powers should be devolved and how that should be implemented, and we will continue to press for the greatest public involvement in that debate over the coming months.”
For further information contact
Dave Moxham 0141 337 8100