I have been delighted to see the coverage of our policyconference this past weekend. In what one social website described as one ofthe top ten events in Glasgow last weekend. Perhaps it was being in thehistoric STUC building which made the event such a creative and interactiveexchange of ideas, in which all views were respected and listened to. I wasvery proud of the members who were in attendance and more excited than ever todeliver a Labour vision post independence.
The event began by affirming our belief in a return to Clause IV and support for removal of Trident. Such views have been long held in the hearts of many Scottish Labour households and I am delighted to see the support for their return.
Following this, we spent the rest of the morning listening to and then discussing the merits of The Common Weal with Jimmy Reid Foundation director, Robin McAlpine. This meeting really was the perfect start to our conference as you could see the light bulbs go on in our members' heads. The Common Weal is an exciting vision; one which we believe will bring equality, social justice and prosperity to Scotland. We are delighted to strongly support the concept and seek to find a Labour vision of this proposal.
The Common Weal discussion set the stage for the rest of our conference. Throughout the two days, I was excited as expert session leaders provided enough to raise lively debate on all matters from drug addiction to investment. I would like to thank all of our invited guest speakers including, Robin McAlpine, Dr John MacDonald, Jenny Robertson from Phoenix residential treatment centre and perhaps our biggest star this weekend George, a former addict who had the courage to share his story with us.
With only two days it is only right that we do not confirm ourselves to all that was discussed and in areas such as health, education and the economy more work will need to be done. However, I am very pleased to announce these decisions voted, and approved by our members:
- Reject Nuclear Weapons in Scotland
- Support Common Weal concept and contribute to it
- Support full-employment Keynesian development policy
- Support Major Banking reform in the New Scotland
- Support the establishment of a Nationalized Scottish Central Bank
- Support for 2nd language education from the age of 7 years.
- Support an introduction of a living wage
- Establishment of a state owned oil company such as the Norwegian company
- Not to join NATO but to explore other joint defence international agreements
- Expansion of universally free childcare.
We hope that this will be the beginning of our vision of what an independent Scotland can look like. It is an exciting time within our country. The SNP will offer their vision in November, we look forward to other parties and organisations announcing their visions as we are; to give the people of Scotland a choice of what our nation can become with a yes vote.
Our message should be simple, vote yes and choose from these visions. Choose no and get more of the same.
I hope many more of you will join us and help to shape a Labour vision of what Scotland could be like after a yes vote.
Labour for Independence.