SNP set the pace for Holyrood election

The SNP has set the agenda for the holyrood election, setting out clear policies for the 2011 election and firing the starting gun on the campaign.

Over the course of the SNP’s conference a clear dividing line between an SNP working together with people across Scotland to deliver fairness and protect Scotland from the London Government’s cuts and a Labour party pushing up taxes and lacking in policies has emerged.

In a series of announcements over the four day conference the SNP set out the key issues that will dominate the campaign:

  • A council tax freeze to reduce the burdens on households facing increased UK Government taxes and pay restraint
  • The abolition of prescription charges
  • Protection for frontline NHS and police – over management and bureaucracy
  • Passing on any increases in health funding from England to Scotland’s NHS
  • No privatisation of Scottish Water
  • Extending the living wage from low paid Government staff to the NHS and other government agencies.
  • The importance of more powers and independence to allow the Parliament and Government to deliver the jobs, fairness and compassion that are at the heart of Scottish society.  

Conference also saw the campaign come to life across the country as:

  • Thousands of people responded to newspaper adverts and our revolutionary new party political broadcast inviting them to  to share ideas for a better Scotland
  • The SNP confirmed the full list of candidates that will represent the party at the 2011 election
  • Launched app – giving the SNP the practical and technological campaigning edge, ahead of any other UK party.
  • Distributed 500,000 consultation leaflets taking the SNP’s policy ideas and invitation to work together right into people’s households.

Commenting at the end of conference in Perth  Angus Robertson MP, SNP Campaign co-ordinator, said:

“The SNP went into conference saying we would fire the starting gun in the Holyrood campaign and we have set a strong pace toward the 2011 election.

“Alex Salmond, Nicola Sturgeon and our strong team of Government ministers, MSPs, candidates and ordinary members have set out the values and principles that will drive the SNP’s campaign for a fairer and stronger Scotland.

“The SNP will help households in Scotland through the worst of the cuts and protect the services and values that Scotland prizes.  The SNP will freeze the council tax, continue to abolish prescription charges and ensure that when it comes to the NHS or Scotland’s police we will focus on the frontline not the backroom bureaucracy.

“The contrast with Labour, whose instinct is to put up taxes and make pensioners, the poorer in our society and the sick pay for the economic mess they made is clear.

“And with Alex Salmond making  clear the difference more powers and the powers of independence would make to a Scottish Parliament and government focussed on jobs, compassion and fairness our message is resonating with people across Scotland."

Angus MacDonald slams threat to charities and voluntary sector from Labour/Tory/LibDem pact

Proposal would see Scottish charity regulations returned to Westminster

SNP Scottish Parliamentary Candidate for Falkirk East, Grangemouth Councillor Angus MacDonald has slammed the threat of charity legislation being returned to the ConDem government in London, a move proposed by the Calman Commission and supported by Labour.

The SNP Government firmly opposes the return of charity regulation to the Westminster parliament as proposed by the Calman Commission, the body set up in 2007 to review Scottish devolution ten years on which delivered its report last year.

Calling for charity regulations to remain under Scottish control, Councillor Angus MacDonald said:

“We must strongly resist this attempt to claw back charity regulation to Westminster.

“Charity law has never been the same across the UK. The SNP remains firmly opposed to such an imposition. In the five years since the passing of the 2005 Act, we have seen increasing public confidence in Scottish charities.”

“It is essential that with a separate legal system, charities in Scotland are regulated in Scotland.  The current system works. I am deeply worried that returning Scottish charity legislation and regulation to a London Tory-led government, a move supported by the Labour party will be nodded through as part of the Calman proposals.

“There is no evidence or enthusiasm from the voluntary sector for this proposal. Instead there were many calls for lottery funding, a vital part of Scotland’s charitable sector to be devolved – a plea that has been ignored..

“The opinions and views of the SCVO (Scottish Council of Voluntary Organisations), who oppose the plans and represent the majority of the 45,000 voluntary organisations in Scotland, must be taken into account. .

“The Scottish secretary is still working on this legislation which means there is time to drop the charity plans, and introduce legislation that will bring lottery funds to Scotland. As a Liberal Democrat he must also be aware that his party in Scotland said they were opposed to any powers being taken by Westminster.”

“Scotland’s charitable and voluntary sector has made clear it does not want legal powers to be taken back to London.  The SNP is clear we do not want to see these powers taken back to London.

“It is now time for the Labour party and the UK Government to be clear that they will not do this."

SNP invite half a million to be part of better

500,000 consultation leaflets distributed in a day

Half a million consultation leaflets from the SNP inviting people to be part of better will be distributed across Scotland today through the pages of national Sunday newspapers as the SNP continues to set the direction for the Holyrood elections next year.

Carrying the party’s campaign message that together we can make Scotland better the leaflets invite members of the public to help us make Scotland more successful by telling us their priorities for the next government so we can all make our nation the better place we know it can be.

The consultation document includes ideas from such as one stop shop centres for cancer treatment, an Education Rights and Responsibilities bill to guarantee standards in our schools, Green skills academies to prepare people for the tens of thousands of new jobs in the green economy and additional powers for police to tackle serious crime.

SNP Campaign Director Angus Robertson MP said:

"In the last few days the SNP's campaign for the Holyrood election next year has got under way. Through newspaper adverts and our innovative broadcast we are inviting the public to join us in making Scotland better by looking at the ideas we are offering for the future of our nation and sharing their ideas with us.

"Today we have taken that further by directly contacting and consulting over 500,000 voters with leaflets in Sunday newspapers.

“We have achieved a lot in three years of minority government with a council tax freeze, the small business bonus, safer streets and cleaner hospitals, but we know there is more we can do to make Scotland better and we know the people of Scotland must be at the heart of that process.

“The next Scottish Government not only has to deal with the cuts coming down the line but has to put Scotland on the right path for a fairer, wealthier and smarter future. Our experienced and trusted team wants to hear your views so that together we can make Scotland better.”

Copyright © Angus MacDonald MSP 2017

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