End the cuts and rethink Scottish policing, says UNISON

Date: Thursday 10 September 2015

UNISON Scotland police staff will call for the suspension ‘all cuts and reforms while we re-think Scottish policing’ at a public meeting in Dundee tonight (Thursday, 10 Sept 2015, 7pm).

Shadow justice spokesperson Graeme Pearson MSP is travelling the country speaking to rank and file officers, civilian staff, community groups, victim support staff and others as part of Scottish Labour’s wide-ranging Review of Policing which is being held over the next four weeks.

Speaking ahead of the meeting, George McIrvine, branch secretary of UNISON police branch said: ‘Scottish Government is cutting Police Scotland too deep and too fast. They are cutting £1.1 billion from police budgets by 2026 while protecting police officers numbers. It’s police civilian staff like control room operators, crime analysts, and criminal justice staff who are losing their jobs.

We are only 3 years into this cuts and merger programme. We cannot go through another 11 years of this. We need to suspend all cuts and reforms while we re-think Scottish policing before we  completely dismantle modern policing in Scotland and take the force back to the 1970s.

George also said ‘UNISON welcomes this particular Review. This is an opportunity for police staff and public to have their say on policing in Scotland. We need to learn from the mistakes since the merger. But be warned UNISON will be up for a fight if we continue with these cuts and keep the uncosted manifesto pledge to maintain 1000 police officers’

The public meeting this evening starts at 7pm at the Kydd Building, 40 Bell Street, Abertay University, Dundee.



Danny Phillips, UNISON communications officer, 07944 664110
George McIrvine, UNISON police branch secretary, 07842 542677


  • UNISON represents police civilian staff. It is the biggest trade union in Scotland.
  • Efficiency savings of £1.1 billion by 2026 directly affects 25% of the police budget. It impacts unfairly onto the civilian staff, ultimately creating a two tier workforce.
  • The SNP are also carrying out a Review of Scottish Policing.
  • The Scottish Labour Review of Scottish policing is expected to focus on: Local accountability; The relationship between Police Scotland, the Scottish Police Authority and Scottish Government ministers;  Staffing; and Performance Targets