STUC on labour market statistics

October 14th 2009

Commenting on today’s statistics which confirm a rise in Scottish unemployment of 13,000 over the quarter to August, Grahame Smith, Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) General Secretary said:

“Today’s figures show another significant rise in Scottish unemployment. As bankers begin to ‘return to normality’, ordinary Scottish workers face growing economic insecurity.

“The STUC recognises that both the UK and Scottish Government have responded to rising unemployment with a range of welcome initiatives. However, we have to ask whether their response to rising unemployment is sufficient to meet the scale of the crisis. It is imperative that Scotland doesn’t leave this recession with another legacy of persistent long-term unemployment.

“Most importantly, with the 2009 Pre-Budget Report looming, it is essential that public spending isn’t slashed in response to an imaginary budget crisis. With unemployment rising and business investment plummeting, the last thing that should be done is to deliberately reduce total spending in the economy.

“A response which focuses on immediate deficit reduction will inevitably result in prolonged economic stagnation, higher unemployment and increasing public debt”.


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