Oppose Devastating Glasgow HSCP Cuts

The Scottish Socialist Party yesterday joined campaigners and trade unionists from UNISON, Unite, and GMB to oppose further devastating cuts to health and social care jobs in Glasgow.

The demonstration was held ahead of the Glasgow HSCP meeting today, which is poised to slash £36m off budgets for some of the city’s most vulnerable citizens and frontline workers.

The SSP fully opposes all cuts, and calls for social care to be incorporated into a publicly-owned, publicly-funded National Care Service which delivers care free at the point of use.

The SSP calls for a No Cuts Budget across Scotland, with action to win back the billions stolen from our communities and public services by years of discredited austerity and rampant profiteering.

SSP Trade Union Organiser, Richie Venton, said:

“The message to the eight Glasgow City councillors who sit on the HSPC was loud, clear and furious: “No more cuts! Stand up for the people you have the privilege of being elected to represent! Refuse to set a Cuts Budget!”

SSP campaigners with UNISON members protesting HSCP cuts in Glasgow, March 2024

“As union speakers spelt out, the HSCP plans would mean cuts to 150 jobs, and ‘to be confirmed’ numbers in the ‘third sector’ (who provide two-thirds of social care across Scotland); cuts to district nurses, children’s dental care, and care packages; removal of the ‘substantial and critical need’ criterion for social care provision, to only cover ‘critical need’ – endangering people, and dumping more into hospital care, at a time when the NHS is already bursting at the seams.”

“Cuts to low-paid women workers’ holiday payments, from 12.5 to 6.5 public holidays (after the decades of pay inequality in the City Council), and shunting the care of people from social work and the NHS to community facilities – just as the same City Councillors slash community provision in the overall Council budget!

“Glasgow City Council has been robbed of at least £600m in the past ten years by Holyrood and Westminster politicians – but the various stripes of Tory, SNP, Labour and Green councillors have utterly failed to rise up and fight for funding to protect workers and the public services they provide.

UNISON NHS Glasgow Clyde & CVS branch members protesting HSCP cuts, March 2024

“And grotesque profit is being made from private companies and ‘charities’ hired to provide social care.

“Out of every £1 of public money handed over in contracts with this ‘third sector’, at least 20p goes straight into their profits!

“In the example of the Richmond Fellowship – one of many outfits that pay their workers £2- or £3-an-hour less than council staff in the same jobs, and provide them absolutely NO sick benefits – they have £58m assets in their coffers.

“The SSP will stand shoulder to shoulder with workers and user groups fighting these cuts.”