On Thursday Trade Unions for Scottish Labour launched its Workplace Agenda 2016 - setting out ten ways a Scottish Labour government could make a real difference for workers in Scotland.
Kez Dugdale addressed the meeting and outlined her view of the relationship between the trade unions and Scottish Labour. She said:
"I want to change from a party that only seemed to offer a vote in a leadership election; to become a grass roots movement that says make your voice heard in the leader's office.
And to change a message that failed to challenge the establishment; to be the messenger that hands Tory austerity its eviction notice"
She pointed to the more open Scottish Labour Party conference with trade union motions on TTIP and the Trade Union Bill being passed overwhelmingly.
She pointed to the SNP rhetoric on workers rights not being backed by action. Including public contracts still being awarded to companies that have blacklisted trade unionists.
She also highlighted how cuts to local services affect everyone who uses those services, not just the thousands who are losing their jobs. She said:
"It is your children who are being asked to pay the price of Tory austerity by a SNP government not prepared to use its own powers."
On the Trade Union Bill she highlighted all the measures Scottish Labour had taken to pursue the issue in the Scottish Parliament, with only limited support from the SNP benches. Not one SNP MSP has backed Neil Findlay's motion to change the parliament's rules to allow a meaningful challenge to the Bill.
She finished by saying:
"any Government that I lead will not comply with this attack on workers rights, and I will fight every day to remove that legislation".
Trade unions, councillors and others gathered at the Scottish Parliament on Budget Day to protest against the SNP budget that slashes allocations to Scottish councils. Shunting Tory austerity to local community services.
The Scottish Government is always claiming it needs more powers. But when it gets them, it refuses to use them. Claims to be the anti-austerity party have been shown to be simply rhetoric.
This is the Blog of the Scottish Trade Unions Labour Party Committee (STULP).