The Bill, which was being
steered through the Scottish Parliament by Labour MSP Hugh Henry,
would have given shopworkers and other public facing staff the same
level of protection given to emergency workers who are assaulted
while doing their jobs.
MSPs voted by a margin of 75 to 42 against allowing further
discussion on the Bill, despite a Parliamentary Committee
acknowledging that action was urgently needed to address violence
against public facing workers.
Hannett, Usdaw General Secretary said:
"Scotland's shopworkers have
been very badly let down by the SNP. They legislated to put
shopworkers on the frontline of preventing under-age sales, yet
have now blocked any further discussion about protecting those same
shopworkers from the violence and abuse they face when doing their
needed action from the SNP Government and instead all they received
were warm words and sympathy. That isn't going to stop or deter the
thug that attacks one of our members for refusing to sell them
alcohol later tonight."
Wason, Usdaw Scottish Divisional Officer said:
"Our members will be
dismayed by the failure of SNP MSPs and others to support them. To
suggest workplace violence is an issue not worthy of further time
and discussion in Parliament is quite frankly disgraceful."
"However, we were extremely
pleased and encouraged to hear that Labour Leader Iain Gray has
committed to legislating on this issue should Labour win next
year's election. It won't be lost on our members or other public
facing staff, which political party really takes violence against
- For further information on the Protection of Workers
(Scotland) Bill visit:
- For further information on Usdaw's Freedom From Fear campaign
- Usdaw (the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is
the UK's fourth biggest Trade Union, with over 395,000 members.
Usdaw is the country's fastest growing Trade Union; membership has
increased by more than 15% in the last four years and by over a
quarter in the last decade. Most Usdaw members work in the retail
sector, but the Union also has many members in transport,
distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.