By Paul Cassidy
Jackie Baillie today has said that she will back the Scottish Government’s budget if it delivers a fair deal for social care workers in West Dunbartonshire and Argyll & Bute.
Ahead of the stage three vote tomorrow, Scottish Labour has offered to support the budget if it includes an increase in social care workers’ pay to £12-an-hour with a process to raise this to £15 in the next parliament.
The median wage for care workers across the UK is currently £9.50-an-hour, and a pay rise would benefit as many as 200,000 people in Scotland who have contributed so much during the pandemic.
A recent survey conducted by the GMB union revealed that 98 per cent of social care workers feel underpaid, and 52 per cent regard themselves as undervalued by the Scottish Government.
Commenting on the budget Jackie Baillie MSP for Dumbarton, Vale of Leven, Helensburgh & Lomond said: “Our dedicated NHS and social care workers in West Dunbartonshire and Argyll & Bute have contributed so much during the pandemic.
“Their efforts have saved lives and ensured the most vulnerable in our communities have been cared for, which goes to the very heart of a compassionate society.
“We applauded them and now it’s time to recognise and reward them with a fair pay deal in this year’s budget.
“So I am making a clear offer to the Scottish Government: deliver a fair pay rise for social care workers and I will vote for the budget.
“And then let’s spend the next parliament working on a recovery plan to rebuild Scotland.”