Monday, 19 January 2009

UNISON comment on CBI 's 'double whammy' for the Scottish taxpayer

For immediate release Date: 19 January 2009

UNISON, the largest union representing Scotland’s water and sewage workers, today accused the CBI Scotland of wanting to hit Scots with a ‘double whammy’, by advocating a PFI solution for the new Forth Bridge, and/or selling off Scottish Water to pay for it. These are both ‘solutions’ advocated by Iain McMillan of CBI Scotland at a conference this morning.

UNISON’s Scottish Organiser Dave Watson said:

“Not content with championing PFI to build the new Forth Road bridge, which will effectively cost the price of two bridges to fund one, so that their members can make a nice profit, Mr McMillan wants to cost Scotland’s taxpayers the extra water charges that will be needed to fund the fat cats to take over Scottish Water – a real double whammy for the Scottish Taxpayer.

“What is disappointing in this, is not that the spokesperson for the private sector wants more profits for his members, but that there are two political parties in Holyrood who seem to want to go along with this. Both the Tories and the Liberals seem to have swallowed the myths about private sector efficiencies. You would think that recent experiences would have changed that view.

“UNISON, along with the STUC and the other unions involved in the water industry have been engaged in the debate about the future of Scottish Water, and we all believe that there should be greater democratisation of the service, but it must remain in public hands.”


Note for Editors: The unions have produced a discussion paper It’s Scotland’s Water that outlines some ways to allow greater accountability for Scottish Water, and how important the service is for public health and socio-economic development. It is available on the UNISON website at's_water.pdf

For Further Information Please Contact:
Dave Watson (Scottish Organiser) 07958 122 409 (m)
Chris Bartter (Communications Officer) 0771 558 3729(m)

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