Scottish public sector lost 10,000 workers in 2012
• 10,000 public sector workers left their jobs in the last year, new figures show
• 580,400 employed in last quarter of 2012, down 10,300 from same period in 2011
During the final three months of the year, the sector employed 580,400 people, down 10,300 on the last quarter of 2011.
The public sector includes devolved areas such as the NHS, local government and the Scottish Government civil service, and reserved areas such as the Ministry of Defence, HM Revenues and Customs and the Department of Work and Pensions.
It accounted for almost a quarter of all employment (23.5 per cent) in the final quarter of last year.
The decrease comes as official figures show a rise in employment in the private sector.
The Scottish Government has a policy of no compulsory redundancies and has encouraged local authorities to also avoid compulsory job cuts.
Total employment in the devolved public sector fell from 489,700 in the last quarter of 2011 to 485,100 in the same period of 2012.
The overall decrease was driven by a 1.8 per cent fall in local government employment, a 5 per cent fall at further education colleges and a 0.9 per cent drop in the civil service over the year.
Devolved public sector staffing in the NHS increased by 0.9 per cent, while employment in the reserved public sector in Scotland was down 5.7 per cent.