Delivering leisure is no fun, says UNISON Scotland

Date: Tuesday 09 June 2015

Staff delivering culture and leisure services across Scotland are coming under increasing pressure as job losses and lack of investment make their work increasingly difficult.

This is the finding of a report from UNISON, While we work you play – staff in Scotland’s leisure trusts speak out.

A survey of culture and leisure staff by UNISON found that over half regularly work more than their contracted hours and seventy one percent say that morale in their workplace has gone down in recent years. Staff say they are under increasing pressure as staff leave and are not replaced

The survey examines Sport Scotland figures on charging for services and discovers that prices for popular sporting activities have been increasing over the cost of inflation.

Workers cite declining staff numbers and poorer quality services as key factors in their discontent.

Dave Watson, UNISON head of bargaining and campaigns said, ‘In recent years almost every local authority has gone down the road of outsourcing culture and leisure services to a trust. This was meant to bring in new investment and all round service improvements. That hasn’t happened – and we need Councils to take a serious look at this sector so they can improve services and staff morale’

‘The findings in this report are predictable. Unfortunately we are hearing the same story from public sector workers across Scotland. They are under pressure to deliver more services, with less staff and less resources. Jobs are being cut and are not being replaced, and their pay is falling behind the cost of living. As this report shows staff are doing their level best but find it very stressful working harder for less pay but seeing the quality of the services to the public decline.’


Dave Watson, UNISON head of bargaining and campaigns 07958 122409
Danny Phillips, UNISON communications officer, 07944 664 110

Notes for editor

UNISON is the largest trade union in Scotland. It is the public services trade union.

Link to report: