The Scottish Independence Convention (SIC), would like to send its wholehearted congratulations to the SNP and the Scottish Green Party for their successes at the Holyrood elections. We now have an even larger majority of Independence supporting MSPs and the mandate for a new referendum is renewed and strengthened.
We are particularly proud that Maggie Chapman, Co-convenor of the Convention and SNP convention member Emma Harper, were elected and re-elected respectively, and wish them well in this most important of parliamentary sessions.
We would also like to congratulate all those involved in the democratic process in Scotland which saw a record turn out, the highest proportion of women elected to Holyrood, Kaukab Stewart returned as the first woman of colour and an increased representation of those living with disabilities.
We should be able to say our democracy is in good hands, but ultimately of course, it is not. It remains in the hands of the Westminster parliament and the UK Tory party, something we will all work tirelessly to change.
With the mandate for a second referendum comes the responsibility, shared amongst us all , to plan and navigate what will now be a difficult route to self determination. It also brings with it the responsibility to increase support for independence and to start, in earnest, the planning and building of the new institutions and structures required by our new country. The SIC looks forward to collaborating more closely with the SNP and the Scottish Greens as we all work towards these goals.
To build the level of support for independence, the SIC’s campaigning organisation, Voices for Scotland, will continue its ‘Big Organising model’ based approach and will soon launch a highly innovative, ground-breaking platform which will connect independence campaigners with those we need to persuade- the swithering, the unsure and the undecided.
In the coming months the SIC will complete its Transitions paper series, with the work already published building an extremely useful resource for answering questions over, for example, the Border and the job opportunities it creates, or the currency implications of joining the EU, EFTA or the EEA.
The Convention will, at its next monthly meetings, discuss the Sustainable Growth Commission as part of ongoing concerns around its place as a central part of any independence offering to be put to the Scottish people. The diversity of our movement is its greatest strength and whilst all successful campaigns must have discipline around key messages, decisions about these cannot be imposed.
We will also continue to bring together and work with other movement building organisations such as Now Scotland, the National Yes Network and the Scottish Independence Foundation to strengthen the internal structures required to win a grassroots led campaign.
In all these tasks we look forward to working with the SNP and the Scottish Greens so that beyond having renewed the mandate for self determination, we are fully prepared to win the campaign and we’ve started to build our new country so it is capable of being green, fair and prosperous.
Iain Black, Co-Convenor Scottish Independence Convention