Scottish Labour pledges action on low pay 'scourge' in by-election seat

Michael Shanks will be joined by Anas Sarwar on Friday as they unveil a campaign billboard.

Scottish Labour pledges to tackle low pay ‘scourge’ in Rutherglen and Hamilton West PA Media

Labour’s candidate for the upcoming Rutherglen & Hamilton West by-election has said his party will tackle the “scourge” of low-paid work in the area.

Michael Shanks will be joined by Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar on Friday as they unveil a campaign billboard in the constituency.

Voters will go to the polls on October 5 following the successful recall petition for Margaret Ferrier.

Katy Loudon is the SNP’s candidate for the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election.PA Media

Labour has pledged to end zero-hours contracts, extend sick pay and raise the minimum wage if they win power.

The Labour candidate also said his SNP opponent, Katy Loudon, should apologise for hiring door-to-door leafleters for the campaign.

Shanks said: “While the SNP is tangled up in its own hypocrisy, Labour is getting ready to deliver a new deal for working people.

“People in Rutherglen and Hamilton West have been badly let down by our two failing governments, leaving workers underpaid and undervalued.

“Labour will tackle the scourge of low pay and insecure work in Rutherglen and Hamilton West and strengthen workers’ rights across the UK with our transformative plans.

“Katy Loudon must apologise for the shameful use of exploitative zero-hour contracts and stand with workers by backing Labour’s plans.”

David Linden said Labour had a ‘brass neck’.PA Media

Responding to Shanks’ comments, SNP MP David Linden said: “It shows the brass neck of the Labour Party to issue ill-informed attacks when they themselves would rather see powers over employment law remain in the hands of the Tories at Westminster than a progressive Government in Holyrood.

“The SNP Scottish Government have made great strides in ensuring more Scots are paid the real living wage of £10.90 an hour instead of the Tories’ lower pretend living wage.

“And in stark contrast to the moves of Westminster politicians to criminalise workers and clamp down on the rights of unions, in Scotland the SNP Scottish Government has engaged with unions to deliver fair pay to workers.”

He added: “If Labour are serious about improving the rights and lives of workers they’ll support the motion in Holyrood next week calling for the devolution of employment law.

“But as per usual the Labour Party have shown they are more interested in propping up Westminster than doing what’s necessary to support ordinary Scottish people – more proof that we’d be better off with the full powers of independence.”

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