Monday, 12 March 2012

Independence Referendum

UNISON Scotland has published its submission to the UK and Scottish Government consultations on the proposed independence referendum.

We support an simple, neutral question on independence in the referendum such as “Should Scotland become an independent country?”. We also believe that the referendum on Scotland’s constitutional future is too important to be rushed and therefore support autumn 2014. However, that time should be used effectively by Civic Scotland to develop a credible proposal for extended devolution that may be able to form the basis for a second question. The Scottish Government should also publish its proposals on independence without further delay and by early 2013 at the latest.

We believe the franchise should be as for Scottish Parliament elections with the exception of UNISON's long standing support for extending the vote to 16 and 17 year olds. The referendum should be supervised by an independent commission and the Electoral Commission is the obvious body to achieve that.

UNISON Scotland understands the need for this early emphasis on fair procedures and independent oversight. However, we believe the debate should move on to consider a vision for the sort of Scotland we would want to live in, against which we can judge constitutional proposals. We intend to fully engage our members in that process.

1 comment:

  1. Alex Gordon10:36 am

    Given that the Electoral Commission is a UK institution and an arm of the British state surely this trade union should be calling for an independent supervisor for the electoral process? Unison has a proud hsistory of supporting monitors and supervisors in electoral processes throughout the world. It is illogical not to remain consistent and include such a suggestion in this submission.