STUC will approach Scottish Elections and referendum debate without fear or favour

November 17th 2020

STUC will approach Scottish Elections and referendum debate without fear or favour

November 17th 2020

• Latest Johnson broadside undermining devolution will not deflect Scotland’s workers says STUC General Secretary

• Principle of self-determination will guide STUC’s approach to a potential second independence referendum including consideration of a third ballot option

Speaking after today’s STUC Congress, STUC General Secretary called for respect for the democratic will of the Scottish people.

"There are very divergent views about the pros and cons of independence within our movement, but today showed a strength of support for Scottish self-determination which reflects a wider public view that the UK Government must respect. And despite what the Prime Minister says, we are proud of devolution and proud of our Parliament."

Referencing Alistair Jack’s recent statement that a referendum should not take place for up to 40 years based on previous statements from Alex Salmond saying the referendum was a ‘once in a generation’ event she said:

"People are pretty unimpressed that one set of politicians are interpreting the statement of another set of politicians to deny them a second vote for up to 40 years. There has been major constitutional and political upheaval since 2014 not least through Brexit and the UK Government’s desire to reduce the powers of the Scottish Parliament."

"If a majority of the population support a second referendum and if they elect a majority of pro-independence MSPs then the case for agreeing to a second referendum will become unanswerable."

"Supporting another referendum is quite different from favouring a given outcome of that vote. Indeed our statement to Congress is quite clear that a future referendum need not necessarily be confined to a binary choice. A third ballot option could be a real possibility."

Foyer was equally critical of the current post-independence plan being presented by the SNP and wealth and power centralisation agenda of many supporters on a No vote:

"As things stand, the two most likely outcomes of another referendum would be independence on the prospectus of the SNP’s growth commission - a recipe for of years austerity - or the status quo with power and wealth across the UK centralised in London and the South East at the expense of the nations of the UK and the North of England.

"Neither of these should be an acceptable option for those committed to social and economic justice.

"Alongside responding to the pandemic and next political focus will be on the Scottish elections. Workers cannot wait for constitutional change. We need a recovery that does not simply take us back to the injustices and inequalities which preceded the pandemic. That means a plan for jobs, fair pay, investment in a green recovery and a meaningful redistribution of wealth. Above all else, it should be understood, that the crucial task, of saving jobs, can’t wait till after a second referendum."

ENDS

For further details contact Dave Moxham on 07891026870

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