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Trade unions and charity to lead cost of living crisis summit

This news post is about 2 years old

The meeting was announced at the STUC annual congress in Aberdeen.

An emergency summit organised by trade unions and anti-poverty charities is set to take place in Scotland in June to tackle the continuing cost of living crisis. 

The discussion, co-organised by the Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) and the Poverty Alliance, will bring together campaigners from across Scotland on June 17. 

Scotland’s largest trade union body announced the move at the annual STUC congress in Aberdeen on Wednesday, saying the talks would be in response to the “abject failure” of the Scottish and UK Government.

Hearing from trade unions, civic organisations and community groups across the country, the emergency meeting will demand further intervention from government to alleviate the impact of rising living costs.

STUC general secretary, Roz Foyer, called for the “largest broad alliance” to unite in seeking urgent support for those most in need across Scotland.

She said: “The cost-of-living crisis permeates throughout every aspect of workers’ lives in Scotland. From wages, energy, housing and food, thousands on Scotland are now facing a fight to afford the bare necessities.

“There has been a complete abject failure from government and our political class to support those most in need when they desperately need it.

“Scotland’s workers didn’t cause this crisis. They shouldn’t be paying for it. In response, the STUC are uniting the largest broad alliance in the country – community groups, civic organisations, and unions – to work together in delivering for our members.

“This cannot continue. Both the Scottish and UK governments have left workers in the lurch and this collective summit seeks to hold them to account, demanding sustained and meaningful action on the cost-of-living crisis.”

The annual congress in Aberdeen, taking place this week, saw a statement from the STUC general council warn of the continued struggles facing working people across Scotland and beyond due to the cost of living crisis. 

A number of factors, including rising inflation, drops in household income, the removal of the £20 uplift in Universal Credit, as well as the increasing pressure from bills, were cited as reasons for the summit. 

The statement warned that the council, along with the trade union movement, community groups and campaigners, are “desperately worried, and angry, at the failure of government policy to effectively deal with the crisis”. 

Demands such as a rise in minimum wage, as well as both a removal of the Universal Credit cut and National Insurance hikes at UK level, and a number of measures in Scotland, were laid out by the STUC.