The Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament has called on the Defence Secretary to come clean about the small number of people in Scotland who rely on Trident for their work.
Isobel Lindsay, Vice-Chair of Scottish CND, said: “It is important that when people decide how to vote in 2014 they can do so on the basis of hard facts, not spin or innuendo. Philip Hammond should stop playing games and update the figures which his Labour predecessors released. These showed that there were only 464 civilian jobs at Coulport and Faslane which directly relied on the Trident nuclear weapons programme.”
On 14 October 2009 Bob Ainsworth said that 464 civilians at the Clyde Naval Base were directly employed on Trident. He provided a breakdown of these positions by company, skills and home location. He also explained that “posts with the Strategic Weapon System heading have been considered Trident-related”.
In June this year Jonathan Edwards MP asked Philip Hammond a similar question - how many civilian jobs in Scotland rely on Trident. Hammond replied on 9th July that the Government did not compile statistics on employment in “UK regions”.
It is hard to comprehend how this can be the case, says Scottish CND. Since 2010 the Ministry of Defence has been involved in a detailed study of the personnel at Coulport and Faslane who are employed on the Trident Strategic Weapon System. This has resulted in 150 MOD civilian posts being moved into the private sector.
The campaign group says that Hammond’s silence can only be explained as a deliberate attempt to mislead the Scottish public and to exaggerate the number of jobs that might be affected if Trident were forced out as a result of Scottish independence.
Scottish CND has submitted a Freedom of Information request to the MOD asking for an update of the number of people in Scotland employed on Trident.
Reply by Bob Ainsworth 14 October 2009: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200809/cmhansrd/cm091014/text...
Reply by Philip Hammond, 9 July 2012:
MOD report on Coulport privatisation (May 2011):