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A people's manifesto for Scotland's services
UNISON is about to launch Serving Scotland, the first ever manifesto for Scotland's public services, writes SiU editor John Stevenson.
As the new Scottish Parliament approaches, UNISON is giving a lead by campaigning for the services that the people of Scotland value so highly.
And the union wants to involve the people in that campaign.
"The people of Scotland voted year after year for high quality, accountable public services. They voted for a Scottish Parliament so those services could be protected and improved.
"We want to put those services, and the people who provide them, back on the agenda", said Mike Kirby, UNISON Scotland Convener.
The draft manifesto, previewed by Scotland inUNISON, will call for the union to "engage the community" by reaching out into the communities of Scotland, "Listening, consulting and responding to the demands that the Scottish people will make of our parliament, our government and their public services".
The manifesto will be published in the next week and, in a first for any trade union in Scotland, it will be simultaneously launched on the Internet.
The document will stress three main issues:-
- "Our services must be responsive to the needs and wishes of the Scottish people - giving them a say in their services.
- "Our services must be the best that can be delivered - choosing quality.
- "Our services must be provided by a public services team, a workforce trained and qualified, treated fairly and equally, with the resources to deliver - choosing teamwork".
The document will go out to branches, political parties, MSP candidates, voluntary organisations, councils and all areas of Scottish life.
As part of the campaign, UNISON will be calling for meetings with parties and a range of organisations across the country.
Branches will be urged to co-ordinate area events to show how well the public services team can serve Scotland - but also how their services are hit by cuts, privatisation and outsourcing.
We're on the Web
The Communications & Campaigns Committee launched UNISON Scotland's internet website on 19 November.
Packed with information, you can find the site at the address below. You will find Scotland in UNISON, press releases, contacts, resources, graphics for magazine editors, e-mail enquiry forms, course details and application forms, submissions and responses, service group news and much more.
Please look us up and let us have your comments.
STUC backs fight against PFI and privatisation
by Morag Stevenson, Communications & Campaigns Committee