The closure of a 'lifeline' women's service in the city on Wednesday is an utter disgrace, a Glasgow MSP has said.

Pauline McNeill hit out at the Scottish Government and Glasgow City Council over the closure of Turning Point 218, a service that provided an alternative to prison for female offenders.

Turning Point 218 was forced to close after 20 years when the council released an "unworkable" budget of £650,000 last year, down from the anticipated budget of £1.37 million.

The Labour MSP questioned whether the government "understood" the service and slammed the local authority for comparing Turning Point 218 to other services in the country.

READ MORE: First Minister quizzed over closure of Glasgow 218 service

She said comparisons between Turning Point 218 and The Lilias Centre, a Maryhill Community Custody Unit, were misplaced.

The Labour politician told the Glasgow Times: "I want some accountability from the government and I want them to give me proper answers.

"They have not answered the question at all as to why they slashed the budget to such an extent.

"The council and the government need to retract their statements that imply the closure is okay because we have another service - we don't.

"We’ve just closed the only drugs specialist facility rehab beds we had dedicated to women with addiction."

A spokesperson from the Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) said: "The loss of 218 does represent a loss within the city in terms of a women’s only residential service, albeit a service for a very small number of women at any time (hence the reduction in capacity following joint review).

"The highlighting of other services for women in the justice system has been provided, not to minimise the loss, but to illustrate the breadth of supports that are available for women in the community to support with addressing their needs and risks."

The council would not confirm which services the commissioning team used as a benchmark to decide that the 218 budget should be reduced to £650,000.

We previously reported that McNeill quizzed Humza Yousaf over the closure during First Minister's Questions on January 18.

McNeill added: "I've written a follow-up letter to Humza Yousaf about the closure.

"He has either been wrongly briefed on the issue or hasn't understood it.

"It's quite alarming that both the First Minister and the Cabinet secretary seem to think that the new Lilias Centre facility within the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) is the same thing when they are clearly not.

"The Lilias Centre does not specialise in drug rehabilitation and the facility is used within the prison estate once women meet certain criteria - the 218 centre is an alternative to custody.

"It's clear last May when they agreed to cut the budget it was an unworkable project. I think it's an utter disgrace."

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “Decisions on the provision and commissioning of individual community justice services are a matter for local authorities.

"Glasgow City Council is working closely with Turning Point to support those using the service and has provided reassurances that other services are available to support people with similar needs."

McNeill said: "I want to emphasize the tragedy of this series of decisions and the lack of accountability there has been from the government making these decisions."