New research released today has outlined the damage that will be done to Scottish shop workers if the SNP do not vote against the Government on plans to devolve Sunday trading powers to England and Wales.
The report, produced by Edinburgh-based economic consultancy Biggar Economics, shows that the Scottish workforce will lose £74m a year as a result of Sunday trading changes south of the border with each Scottish worker losing around £1,300 a year.
The report states that if Sunday pay premiums for Scottish workers were to end as a result of Sunday trading devolution in England and Wales, over 60,000 retail employees would be affected. There would also be a significant effect on the Scottish economy, with reduced economic output of £71m and a total household income reduction of £87m.
The Scottish National Party have said that they are yet to commit to which way they are planning to vote on the issue next week, despite claiming that they would vote against the measures to protect Scottish workers when the plans were first raised in November.
There have been suggestions that the Party was prepared to drop its opposition to the plans, but campaigners are warning that the UK parliament cannot introduce and enforce measures to protect premium pay.
A spokesperson from the Keep Sunday Special Campaign said: “Whatever deal the SNP may be looking to strike with the Tories, it is difficult to see how it would protect Scottish workers from losing their premium pay. It is these Scottish workers and families that will suffer as a result of the plans to devolve Sunday trading hours, and the SNP must stand up for them and vote against the measure next week.”
The Government’s Sunday trading proposals also face a growing rebellion from within the Conservative party, with over 30 back bench MPs planning to vote against the plans in the Enterprise Bill next week.
Published on 6th March 2016