Monday 21 February 2022

Cost of Living protest in Aberdeen on 12th Feb 2022 - the first of many

 ATUC's protest on the spiralling cost of living attracted around 50 people, angry at the soarings costs of food, fuel and other basics and the impact that will have on all of us but especially low paid workers and thos on benefits.

We had some excellent speakers and will post their speeches on this blog.

The event was chaired by ATUC member and previous president, Kate Ramsden. Welcoming participants to the event, on such a cold, wet afternoon, Kate spoke of the importance of coming together to give a clear message that ordinary workers must not be left paying the price of  the cost of living crisis in the fifth richest country in the world. 

"There is no less money that there always was," slammed Kate. "It's just in the wrong hands." 

Kate Ramsden
She slammed the Tories' money wasting over COVID, handing out huge sums to their cronies for services that were not properly put to tender and that may or may not have been provided. 

"COVID has only increased the gap between the richest and the rest of us. They have amassed huge amounts of wealth whilst those of us on the frontline of the pandemic are increasingly struggling to make ends meet."

"That needs to change," warned Kate. Not only is it bad for the poorest and low paid, it's really bad for the economy. The way to kickstart the economy is to put money into the hands of ordinary people like us. We are the ones who spend in our local shops and businesses. We are the ones who keep local economies afloat.

"You only have to look at the impact of austerity on Union Street and on the towns throughout Aberdeenshire and Scotland, where shops have closed down to be replaced by charity shops.

"So when people tell you the country can't afford to increase wages, tell them the government can't afford not to. When they say there's no money to increase benefits, tell them the money is there. It's just in the wrong hands. When they tell us we are all in this together, tell them that Boris Johnston and his ilk are not wondering where their next bottle of champagne is coming from, whilst the poorest and low paid are struggling to eat, heat their homes and keep a roof over their heads."

This is the first of many protests on the cost of living crisis and we really hope that it will gain momentum so that the messages to this Tory government can be loud and clear. We will not allow ordinary people to pay for this cost of living crisis whilst the rich amass more and more of our country's wealth.