Thursday, 6 November 2008

UNISON Scotland response to John Swinney's statement on improving scrutiny of public services

Embargo: For immediate release
Date: 6 November 2008

Improving Scrutiny

UNISON Scotland today responded to the statement by Cabinet Secretary John Swinney on improving scrutiny of Scotland’s public services.

Scottish Organiser Dave Watson said:

“UNISON Scotland supports the Scottish Government’s aim of improving scrutiny by reducing duplication and unnecessary burdens on front line services. However, merging bodies to meet government targets is on its own largely cosmetic and could simply lead to slower decision making in larger multi disciplinary organisations. Scrutiny improvement requires new ways of working and this statement is short on detail.”

UNISON supports the government in
  • streamlining decision making and increasing transparency;
  • stopping activity that no longer contributes to the public purpose; and
  • applying much tougher tests to the creation of new bodies
Dave said:

“UNISON in particular welcomes moves towards scrutiny bodies working more closely together with local government. Focusing on robust self-assessment in conjunction with proportionate and intelligence led approach to inspections based of risk assessment will be key to making improvements. However, more detail is needed on where responsibilities lie. In particular over early year’s provision. We should also be wary in the commercial environment of drifting into light touch regulation. Recent experiences in the banking sector has brought this message home to us all."


For further information contact:
Dave Watson, Regional Manager
Mob 07958 122409

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