Edinburgh East MP and Work and Pensions Select Committee member Sheila Gilmore has today called on the SNP to stop playing politics with people’s pensions.
Commenting following last week’s debate in the House of Commons on the Public Service Pensions Bill, Sheila Gilmore MP said:
Scottish Labour MPs at Westminster have been fighting tooth and nail at every stage of this Bill to try to make the changes that are necessary to make these pension changes fairer.
Last week we saw just how hypocritical the SNP are. In the House of Commons, they argued for only a few changes to the Bill. And then we found out that despite being asked by the UK Government, the SNP Government in Edinburgh didn’t suggest a single change to the pension law.
This came just days after John Swinney gave up trying to keep his power to negotiate the terms of the Local Government Pension Scheme at Holyrood, allowing it to pass to the Tory-led UK Government. A move that Scottish Labour opposed and tried to reverse.
What’s clear is that the SNP would rather play politics and try to engineer a row than get on with the hard work of trying to make this Bill fairer. This Bill still has to pass through all its stages in the House of Lords and Scottish Labour will be continuing to fight for the best possible deal.
Notes to Editors
1. During the debate on the Public Service Pensions Bill on Tuesday, a UK Government Minister revealed that the SNP Scottish Government had been asked to suggest amendments to the Bill, but had provided none.
Sajid Javid, Economic Secretary to the Treasury, 4th December 2012:
If the Scottish Government wanted to suggest any amendments, we would of course have a sensible discussion with them about that. Over the past year the Chief Secretary has written on a monthly basis to the Scottish Government about the public service pension reforms, and we have asked many times whether they would like to consider amending the Bill. They have not requested any such changes so far.
2. Sheila Gilmore is a member of the Commons Work and Pensions Select Committee. You can view the committee’s website here:
3. For more information please contact Matt Brennan, Parliamentary Assistant to Sheila Gilmore MP, on 020 7219 7062, 07742 986 513 or firstname.lastname@example.org.