Local government alone cannot solve pay dispute, says Scottish Labour

·2-min read

Local government alone cannot solve pay disputes across Scotland, Scottish Labour has said.

The party spoke out as it emerged that industrial action in cleansing and education will go ahead next week after unions rejected the latest offer from local authorities.

Mark Griffin, the local government spokesperson for Scottish Labour, said the pay rejection “will come as a disappointment to millions of Scots”.

Mr Griffin said: “It is all too clear that local government alone cannot solve this dispute and that the SNP Government has to put its money where its mouth is.

“Make no mistake, the disruption that thousands of Scots are facing to council services is the direct result of the SNP Government’s cuts, incompetence and intransigence.

“Streets across Scotland are covered in litter and rubbish because this SNP Government will not give workers the deal that they deserve.

“Scottish Labour will continue to work with Cosla and the trade union movement to get a settlement that delivers fair pay for workers and protects council services.”

Priorities for the Scottish Government must be focused on reaching a resolution, the Scottish Conservatives have said.

The party’s local government spokesperson Miles Briggs said: “It is Nicola Sturgeon’s savage cuts to local council budgets that have created this mess – but instead of working to get a grip of the strikes, she’s taking to the stage for yet another speaking event this evening.

“While Nicola Sturgeon rubs shoulders with nationalist celebrities, strikes are spreading across the country and rubbish is overflowing on our streets.

“The First Minister should skip the photo ops and finally take responsibility for this SNP-created crisis.”

Ms Sturgeon warned that the Scottish Government’s budged is “finite”, and said all options to make more funding available had been “exhausted” in the bid to bring the dispute to an end.

Ms Sturgeon said she hoped trade union members would accept the latest offer, but added that she understood “the pressures workers face”.