SNP and UK coalition "an unholy alliance" on strike debate

For immediate release 17 November 2011

The Green MSPs today condemned the decision by SNP Ministers to ignore representations from public sector staff and unions to close Holyrood during the day of strike action, 30 November, and instead to support the UK Coalition parties' anti-union position.

Patrick MSP said:

"It’s an utterly cynical move, and an abuse of the Scottish Government’s power, to schedule a debate about the strikes so that only MSPs who cross the picket lines are able to take part.

"On November 30th, the country will see the strongest wave of coordinated action for generations, all to challenge the UK Coalition’s ideological and counter-productive cuts. On that day, the SNP and the Coalition parties will sit together as an unholy alliance on the wrong side of the picket lines. Is this really what the SNP stand for now?

"No doubt there will be empty rhetoric from Ministers about supporting the right to strike – despite knowing that Parliament can only meet if employees and MSPs alike cross the picket lines. The SNP claim they’re on the other side of the argument from the Tories and LibDems. Wrong. The picket line is the argument, and the SNP have picked a side, the same side as the parties primarily responsible for this brutal attack on pay and pensions.

"The unions have been very clear about how MSPs can support them – by joining them at pickets and rallies right across the country. That’s the work we should be doing on November 30th."