UK’s largest union calls for scrapping of National Care Service Bill

The Scottish Government’s troubled National Care Service Bill faced a further blow today  (Wednesday) as UNISON, the UK’s biggest union called on the Scottish government to withdraw the Bill. The call came from a resolution approved at the UNISON annual conference being held in Liverpool.


The policy adopted by the Union, which is the largest in local government and the NHS , included a commitment to campaign to have the Bill withdrawn and the belief that care should be delivered on a not-for-profit basis.


Criticisms of the Bill made at the conference included that it will not solve the recruitment and retention crisis in the care sector and will extend a contracting culture in public services and responsibilities are removed from both councils and the NHS are powers are transferred to Ministerially appointed quangos.


Kate Ramsden a social worker in Aberdeenshire and member of UNISON’s National Executive told the conference: “The NCS (Scotland) bill offers nothing at all to our social care members but, if passed, will devastate local government by taking staff, functions and services out of councils and giving them to unelected quangos.


“Simply put, it is the biggest threat to local government in Scotland that we’ve ever faced. It has serious implications for the NHS too. It’s an outsourcer’s charter which will expand rather than remove the market in care and will re-create the purchaser/provider split in the NHS. There is also nothing about the investment in frontline services that we all know is desperately needed.


“We need to kick profit out of care and scrap the National Care Service Bill”.


Notes for editors

UNISON is the UK’s largest public service union. We represent members across public services, including social care, social work and community health – all of which the Scottish government sees as being transferred to a national care service.

The National Care Service bill  has been delayed by the Scottish Government three times and is now not due to be voted on by Parliament until January  


The resolution adopted by the conference can be found here (Motion 28 – A Vision for a National Care Service)


A brief guide to the National Care Service Bill can be found here


For Further Info contact

 Kate Ramsden (in Liverpool) 07767 027722

 Stephen Low 07956852822