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Last Friday marked the one year anniversary of the referendum when we were all asked if Scotland should be an independent country. In the early hours of the following morning I watched through tears of disappointment as a ‘no’ vote was returned.

In that moment I could not have imagined Scotland’s trajectory in the hours, days, weeks and months to follow. The referendum did not put the campaigns’ active participative democracy to bed. Instead it led to the blossoming of ‘people politics’.

SNP membership has sky-rocketed. The party is now political home to 112,000 people who are determined to ensure Scotland’s voice is not diminished.

The party’s membership surge is indicative of a wider political awakening in Scotland’s population. The election of 56 SNP MPs out of 59 sent a clear message of hope and a move away from things continuing as they’ve aye been.

Things have changed and they’re still changing: votes for 16 and 17 year olds and gender balanced cabinets are just two major steps forward in the past year, and more will surely follow. It’s quite incredible what can happen when people are inspired and enthused.

And it’s therefore no surprise that Scotland is so disappointed with the ‘business as usual’ attitude of UK politicians. The Scotland Bill has failed to live up to the expectations and enthusiasm of the people of Scotland.

Unionist politicians cobbled the ‘vow’ together in a last gasp attempt to save the union, and it worked. But now the people expect it to be delivered. No matter how hard David Cameron or Scottish Secretary David Mundell try, the vow cannot be swept under the carpet.

Fewer than one in 10 people believe the vow is being delivered and more than half think very little or nothing has changed. It is a view shared by unions, charities and third sector organisations.

Scotland is largely united by a desire to see our country become fairer, regardless of how we voted in the referendum. Most recognise that Scotland needs to have much greater control of tax and welfare if we are to get away from simply softening blows and mitigating the effects of UK Tory austerity that punish the vulnerable for others’ economic mismanagement.

David Mundell has asked that we respect the outcome of the referendum. I simply ask him and David Cameron to respect the will of the Scottish people and deliver the real change that Scotland is crying out for. If not, in the words of our First Minister, they will

Surgeries

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Aileen Campbell MSP, Kirkton Chambers, 12 Kirkton Street, Carluke ML8 4AB • 01555 750 249 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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