Scottish Labour no-show on crucial Public Service Pensions vote

Independent MSP for Dunfermline, Bill Walker, has criticised Scottish Labour MPs for failing to turn up for a crucial House of Common’s vote on Public Sector Pensions. The no-show follows months of noisy opposition from Labour ranks over the Conservative-Liberal Democrat’s planned pension raid, which will now pass into law.

Thirty-five Scottish Labour MPs failed to take a stand at the crucial moment, including Dunfermline’s Thomas Docherty and Shadow Secretary Margaret Curran.

Mr Walker said: “Labour have been quick to criticise the Coalition’s plans and to blame the Scottish Government for being caught between a rock and a hard place in being forced to implement them, but by failing to even show up for the vote they have proven that their protests are just hypocritical huffing and puffing. Read more of this post

Public Service Pensions Bill

Many of my constituents have contacted me about the Public Service Pensions Bill being considered at Westminster. This will require the Scottish Parliament to bring public sector pension schemes into line with those in England and Wales, even where this does not reflect Scottish circumstances. To quote a letter: this is “unwarranted interference by the Treasury in Scottish provisions”.

Public sector workers who have responsibly paid over the years into a pension have had their confidence undermined. They want the Scottish Parliament to have regulatory powers so a remote Westminster Treasury cannot “narrowly prescribe the scope of those negotiations or change the rules at will.” Read more of this post