Marlyn Glen MSP

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Scottish Labour MSP for North East Scotland

New plea on more civil service jobs for Dundee

21 December 2009

Marlyn Glen has responded to the invitation from Dundee City Council to lobby the Scottish Government for more civil service jobs for the city by telling Finance Secretary John Swinney that the city “must be the location of new agencies” established by the Scottish Government.

Ms. Glen said,

“Since the Scottish Government took over from the Scottish Executive in 2007, not a single civil service job has been transferred to Dundee from Edinburgh.

“In office, they have set up various agencies, none of which has been located in Dundee.

” Skills Development Scotland is based in Glasgow, while the Scottish Futures Trust is based in Edinburgh.

” Creative Scotland which replaces both the Scottish Arts Council and Scottish Screen next year, is not being required to move to Dundee.

“The original purpose of the civil service relocation policy was that the work of the Scottish Government means jobs being shared in all parts of Scotland rather than being concentrated in Edinburgh.

“That has been replaced, to the detriment of Dundee, by a new ‘ policy of strategic asset management’ that is ‘”based upon better use of the existing government estate and solutions that represent best value for money.’

“The Scottish Government needs to look again at its recent decision not to review this policy.

“It also needs to give the city a firm commitment that Dundee will be the home of new long-term Scottish Government agencies which would represent a significant investment in the local economy.”

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Concern expressed over health visitor vacancies in Dundee

19 December 2009

Marlyn Glen has expressed concern that there are over 4 posts for health visitors/public health nurses in Dundee that remain unfilled after 3 months, according to figures provided for her by NHS Tayside.

She said,

“These are key professionals whose expertise is needed in the assessment of child protection issues such as safety and the quality of care from parents.

” It is vital that all of these vacancies are filled as quickly as possible.”

In addition, Ms. Glen was told that over 60 nursing posts have remained vacant for under three months.

These include :

Registered Nurse ( band 5) 34.55 WTE

Registered Nurse (band 6) 17.02 WTE

Registered nurse (band 7) 6.78 WTE

Registered nurse (band 8a) 4.00 WTE

Nurse consultant ( band 8b) 2.00 WTE

Over 162,000 hours were worked by bank nurses in the period April – October of this year.

Nurse banks offer temporary cover for short- term unfilled posts and absences.

Ms. Glen said,

“Good workforce planning will minimise the effect of vacancies upon the quality of care.

” However, unfilled vacancies of whatever duration, place additional pressures of work on existing nursing staff .”

Correspondence with NHS Tayside ( 01/12/09) reveals the following vacancies

Current nursing vacancies

Nursing assistants 14.66 WTE ( whole time equivalents)

Clinical support worker 3.00 WTE

Registered Nurse ( band 5) 34.55 WTE

Registered Nurse (band 6) 17.02 WTE

Registered nurse (band 7) 6.78 WTE

Registered nurse (band 8a) 4.00 WTE

Nurse consultant ( band 8b) 2.00 WTE

Vacancies for 3 months or more than three months

Health Visitor/Public Health Nursing (Dundee) 4.64 WTE

Healthcare Associated Infection

Nurse consultant 1.000 WTE

Tayside Substance Misuse Service

2 posts for registered nurses

Registered Nurse 0.64 WTE

Registered Nurse 1.00 WTE

Clinical Support Worker 1.00 WTE

Surgical Directorate

Nursing Assistant 0.8 WTE

Nursing bank

162,401 hours worked in the period April – October of this year

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MSP urges aid for NHS Tayside to employ newly-qualified midwives

09 December 2009

Marlyn Glen is urging Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon to take action to ensure that NHS Tayside can employ newly-qualified midwives when there is just one part-time vacancy for midwives in the health board.

The midwifery student intake at Dundee University for session 2009-10 is 20, and for Scotland overall 184.

Under the arrangement between the Scottish Government and health boards, every newly-qualified midwife and nurse who wishes to work in the NHS in Scotland receives an offer of employment under the One Year Guarantee Scheme.

However, in a letter of reply to Ms Glen on the subject, NHS Tayside Chair Sandy Watson said,

“Our staff turnover in NHS Tayside is very low and at present we have a part-time vacancy for a midwife which would suit a newly-qualified midwife.

“We are therefore unable to offer midwives posts for one year unless central funding from the Scottish Government is made available under the One Year Guarantee Scheme.

“We are aware that midwives who have recently qualified have enquired about posts and have been advised that we do not have substantive full-time posts.

“NHS Tayside is always keen to offer posts to newly-qualified practitioners and in the absence of currently available posts will offer the opportunity to join out team of bank nurses and midwives. ”

Ms. Glen said,

” I have written to the Health Secretary urging that NHS Tayside receive funding that enables them to employed newly-qualified midwives under the national one year agreement .

” The lack of vacancies will diminish morale amongst student midwives, and the investment in their training and skills will be lost to the NHS in Scotland

Filed under: Uncategorized

Harris Academy : Government should pay for rise in council share

09 December 2009

Marlyn Glen has written to the new Education Secretary Mike Russell saying that the Scottish Government should finance in full any further rises in the council’s share of the cost of the refurbishment of Harris Academy.

This followed reports that the cost of the upgrade could rise from £18 million to £27 million.

If the share of the funding of the investment at Harris remains allocated at two-thirds of the cost coming from the Scottish Government and one-third from Dundee City Council, then the council’s contribution could rise from £6 million to £9 million.

Ms. Glen said,

“The new Education Secretary can show parents in Dundee that things at the top have changed with a new Minister who’s prepared to fund any £3 million increase of the council’s share from £6 million to £9 million in the Harris project entirely from Scottish Government finance.

“Harris will be the only school in Dundee to be included in the refurbishment-new build programme across Scotland.

“Parents and teachers at Harris have had to wait patiently over the past two and a half years for the school to be upgraded while the Scottish Government sought to find a role for its funding quango, the Scottish Futures Trust.

“Mr Russell can signal the beginning of a new approach in Scottish Education by guaranteeing that any further increase in the council’s share of a £27 million Harris project would be funded by his government department.”

Ms. Glen added that the council must receive an assurance that the Scottish Government’s level of funding must be sufficient to prevent the council being forced to pay for its share of the refurbishment by delaying other projects across the city.

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