Holyrood urged to close in support of public sector staff

For immediate release 15 November 2011

The Green MSPs will today vote against a Holyrood business motion which commits Parliament to meeting on 30 November, the day scheduled for a civil service strike over pension cuts. The party argues that MSPs should be supporting public sector staff both inside and outside Holyrood, and respecting union members' calls for MSPs to join them on picket lines instead.

Patrick Harvie MSP said:

"Public sector staff at Holyrood and across Scotland are facing an unjustified attack on their pay and pension arrangements, and it's time for the Scottish Parliament to pick a side. Are MSPs here to do a Tory government's dirty work, or are we here to protect staff and front line services from this ideological assault? George Osborne's austerity agenda doesn't stop at the border, and Holyrood could still decide to take a different path.

"MSPs must accept the legitimacy of the vote for strike action, and recognise the seriousness of the situation which has led to this vote. It would be entirely unacceptable for Parliament to bring in strike-breaking staff or for the Chamber to sit in private in these circumstances. I will be out with the unions, supporting the Parliament's hard-working staff, and this vote will give all MSPs an opportunity to do the right thing and join them too."