SNP Councillor: Asking for trade union input is like letting ‘Dracula run a blood bank’

Glasgow Councillor Russell Robertson decided to vent on twitter his anger that trade unions had the temerity to ask for input on the Scottish Government’s new blueprint for independence.

He slammed the Scottish Trades Union Congress, describing their role as akin to that of ‘Dracula [running] a blood bank’. After all, they only represent 630,000 workers in Scotland, so why should they have a say? He also attacked former MP and MSP Cathy Jamieson, though he erroneously claims that she lost her seat in the Scottish Parliament, rather than stepping down. 

Councillor Robertson defected from Labour to the SNP in 2016, though the party underperformed in the council elections the following year and failed to take full control of Glasgow City Council.

It will raise questions about a creeping anti-trade union feeling attitude in the SNP, as the right wing of the party gains the upper hand in setting the policy agenda. 23 industry organisations and bosses’ associations were asked to participate in the report. The exclusion of workers brings another quote about capital and vampires to mind. 

The STUC had been critical about the new Growth Commission, describing the commitment to liberalising the labour market (or flexicurity) as “[sending] a worrying signal to workers.” They also slammed the commitment to a 3% deficit cap, wondering “how the wider economic goals of an independent Scotland could be met in the face of such austerity.”

The STUC’s reaction, which had been far more positive to the 2014 Report White Paper, is indicative of the sea change in the proposals of the Scottish Government. Yes supporting forums and groups have also been critical, with Bella Caledonia damning the report, and even indy supporting economist Richard Murphy calling it untenable.

At the time of publication, Cllr Robertson had not responded to our request for comment.

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