Responding to the latest labour market figures released today by the Office for National Statistics, Grahame Smith, General Secretary of the Scottish Trades Union Congress, said:
‘These figures show a concerning drop in Scottish employment figures - down 0.2% in the last quarter.
‘In addition, when compared to other parts of the UK, the disproportionately large fall in workforce jobs in Scotland, down 53,000 in the last year, is also of serious concern.
‘With Brexit creating more uncertainty and jobs under pressure, notably in Michelin and across the retail sector, despite being a decade out from the crash, times are still tough for Scotland’s workers.
‘It is incumbent on the Scottish Government to use their forthcoming Budget to stimulate our economy, create jobs and boost pay to recover a decade of lost wages.’
Going on to comment on figures released showing a small increase in real wages across the UK, Smith said:
‘Workers’ pay is still £10 lower than it was ten years ago, so there is a long way to go before workers’ living standards begin to meaningfully recover. Undoing eight years of UK Government austerity and restoring workers’ pay to pre-crisis levels will require will require more than the tinkering seen in the last Budget and no matter how it is spun, austerity and its effects are far from over.’
For more information contact Dave Moxham, STUC Deputy General Secretary, on 07891 026 870