Trade Unionists Cross-Examine the SNP Leadership Trio

I’m sure Ash Reagan, Kate Forbes and Humza Yousaf are in need of a few days’ peace and quiet after all the hustings and TV appearances they have made over the last couple of weeks. Though whether they’ll get them is doubtful.

Here at Scottish Independence Podcasts, we are pro-Independence and non-Party Political. At the same time, we’re keenly interested in the campaign to replace Nicola Sturgeon as SNP Leader and FM. In a previous post we wrote about Kirsty Hughes questions to the candidates about an independence Scotland’s options for our future political links with Europe. Having blogged about our political links to Europe, we thought we’d now blog about questions about matters closer to home.

What kind of society do we want for Scotland? How will we support our work force? Is a non-privately owned Care Service for our elderly possible? What about the economical factors in ealing with climate change?

Those are some of the questions posed to the trio in the hustings organised by SNP Trade Union Group and STUC. The candidates introduced themselves and had a few minutes to outline their priorities if elected leader. Then Ros Foyer , STUC General Secretary, introduced each question.

Here’s list of the questions with approx timings for them. Followed by a link to the hustings video.

  1. Cost of living crisis and fairer taxation. Would candidates comment on giving Parliament and Local Authorities powers to tax the wealth resting in property and land to rebalance the wealth in the country. And a follow-up question from Roza : what they do to make sure that public sectors pay keeps up with inflation. (29min)
  2. Out of every £100 income, private care providers extract £28 as profit, rent, payments to directors, and interest on loans . The equivalent figure for not-for-profit care providers is less than £4. What will candidates do to stop profiteering and ensure that we have a genuinely not-for-profit National Care Service. (41min)
  3. ScotWind and energy revenues: will you ensure that offshore wind revenues are maximised for the good of the Scottish people? not extracted by foreign owner offshore shareholders. Also that they are not price-capped. And as follow-up: would you establish a publicly owned energy company? and to renationise the grid? (53mins)
  4. The Scottish Gov is committed to making Scotland a Fair Work Nation by 2025. But many businesses are lukewarm or even hostile to Trade Unions and UKGov is attacking workers’ right to strike. What will you do now in Scottish Parliament to support Trade Unions. ….workers’ rights in both public and private sectors. And a follow-up: can ScotGov use their procurement budgets to support those businesses who are prepared to work towards fairer work conditions? (61min)
  5. The whisky industry provides £5billion from revenues from UK sales to HMRC but their overall sales is £34billion. Much of the £29billion remaining income leaves Scotland going to overseas-based companies big whisky companies. There is no levy on that at all. Will the candidates bring greater focus on the big whisky companies – not the smaller craft producers – who particularly benefit from that £29billion? (70mins)
  6. It’s very hard to grow an economy and also successfully reduce carbon emissions to avoid more than 1.5 degrees. What is your economic vision to deal with this? (77mins)
  7. What are your plans to empower Local Government? Given that Local Government has been starved of cash for over ten years, how would you respond to that? (89min)
  8. How would you improve life for renters? (99min)
  9. Would you give your support for enabling greater help and access for disabled workers? and a follow-up: would you look at equal pay provision across Scottish employers? (104min)

Want to hear more of the answers to these questions? Click on the image and it’ll take you to the full video:

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