UNISON quizzing both campaigns in Scottish referendum

Scottish independence under conference microscope. Photo: Marcus Rose / Workers' Photos

Scottish independence under conference microscope. Photo: Marcus Rose / Workers’ Photos

UNISON’s national delegate conference discussed the forthcoming Scottish independence referendum this morning, in a wide-ranging debate that challenged both campaigns on what they would offer for working people and for public services.

Lillian Mason of Scotland explained that UNISON had signed up to neither the ‘yes’ campaign nor the ‘better together’ campaign in the referendum on Scottish independence.

“It is right that the people who live in Scotland determine their own destiny on 18 September this year,” she observed.

But “social change matters to us” and Ms Mason told conference that the union was “taking every opportunity to advance the UNISON agenda”.

And when asked ‘whose side are you on,’ she said that UNISON Scotland was ‘on the side that values and recognises public services and the people who deliver them,” and that this is how the union is challenging both sides in the current debate.

For the NEC, Jane Carolan said that the motion “rightly focuses on what is right for the working people of Scotland”.

She told conference that the union had campaigned on the basis of “treating our members like adults”.

When Scottish members vote in September, Ms Carolan said that it would not be “just what’s best for us, but for our children and grandchildren”.

“We need information and not propaganda,” she added.

And what UNISON is doing in the face of the “hype” from both sides is to “educate and agitate. To question closely the claims of both campaigns”.

Delegates agreed that, regardless of the outcome of the referendum, “UNISON members will continue to seek to build the strongest possible union for the benefits of all UNISON members in these four nations”.

UNISON Scotland

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