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Unite Demands Withdrawal of Scotland’s National Care Service Bill

Unite the union took its fight to get the National Care Service (NCS) Bill withdrawn to the Scottish Parliament.

An open session meeting held with MSPs in the Scottish Parliament dozens of Unite representatives working in the local government gave evidence to explain Unite’s position, and the impact for local government if the NCS Bill was to proceed in its current format.

In January, Unite revealed that it had decided to withdraw from any further involvement in the co-design of the NCS. The trade union’s Scottish Executive approved a motion instructing its officers and elected lay representatives not to attend any co-design meetings with immediate effect.

Unite has repeatedly criticised the proposal to transfer services, people and property from local authorities to the Scottish Government or to care boards as a ‘recipe for disaster’. The trade union has specifically taken aim over the ‘only firm proposal on the table’ being the transfer of at least 75,000 employees from local government into centralised ministerial quangos.

Pat Rafferty, Unite Scottish Secretary, said:
“Unite has been leading the fight to have the National Care Service Bill withdrawn as it is clearly not fit for purpose. This is a fact being acknowledged by Scottish Government Ministers who have got themselves into a terrible mess over the proposals. This is because they never bothered to talk to the workforce and trade unions in the first place.”

“The Bill has been a dog’s breakfast from its inception and our members in local government have been rightly furious over the proposal to transfer at least 75,000 workers from local and democratically accountable bodies to centralised ministerial quangos. Unite’s members will be attending the Parliament to tell MSPs directly that it’s time to bin the Bill.”