Welcome to the Public Works blog.

Public Works is UNISON Scotland's campaign for jobs, services, fair taxation and the Living Wage. This blog will provide news and analysis on the delivery of public services in Scotland. We welcome comments and if you would like to contribute to this blog, please contact Dave Watson d.watson@unison.co.uk. For other information on what's happening in UNISON Scotland please visit our website.

Friday, 6 February 2015


From 16 February to 1 March 2015 the TUC is running Fair Pay Fortnight, a series of events across the country that will raise awareness about Britain’s cost of living crisis.
6.1 million people in the UK in working households are living in poverty and despite the fact that the Equal Pay Act came into force over 40 years ago, the gap in gender pay is still significant.
According to Close the Gap in Scotland,
  • Women account for 48% of the labour market.
  • 43% of women employed in Scotland work part-time compared to 13% of men employed in Scotland.
  • Women account for 75% of all part-time workers in Scotland.
And when it comes to pay,
  • 11.5% (comparison of men's full-time hourly earnings with women's full-time hourly earnings, using the mean)
  • 32.4% (comparison men's full-time hourly earnings with women's part-time hourly earnings, using the mean)
Put bluntly, on average, women working full-time in Scotland earn £95.60 per week less than men.
In 2015, that’s unacceptable. Despite the introduction of the specific duties of the Equality Act 2010, there is very little evidence that Government are actively pursuing a political strategy that will address the gap in women’s pay.
The nightmare that is child care costs, soaring inflation – despite what Osborne says - frozen pay, lack of flexible working, caring costs and responsibilities – a never ending stress list that needs to be addressed now. Not by some ministerial advisory group that will report in 5 years.
We need to put fair pay at the top of the political agenda and ensure that policymakers and employers create more high-quality jobs to boost productivity and raise people's living standards. People need more money in their pockets if local economies are to thrive.
Britain needs a pay rise.

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