Devolution all round

Scotland and UK flagsAs we no doubt all know by now, Scotland has voted “no thanks” to independence from the rest of the UK. Of all the burning questions out there now, one has been answered: YEM UK will neither have to change its name nor the flag in its logo, great stuff!

While Scotland pulls itself together now to work with the Westminster government on devolution, the time is ripe for us to consider what had been proposed over 100 years ago now: a federal UK. Let’s not play word games, the federalism that our movement has supported the last four decades is not a centralised state, it is one where powers are managed at the lowest appropriate level. Where we believe some things should be controlled at a European (or even a global) level, there are many, many things that can be devolved to regions, cities, a smorgasbord of areas of different shapes and sizes.

So in light of this Scottish referendum, when questions of how the different parts of our country relate to one another, YEM supports, and will continue to support ‘devolution all round’. And where the Scottish have decided to stick with the rest of the UK, it goes without saying that we will be doing all we can to ensure that the UK takes the same view with the European family of which it is part.

Well done Scotland, on conducting this referendum in a transparent and peaceful way: the Russians have much to learn from you. Well done too on engaging so many people who had previously been disengaged (or in the case of 16 & 17 year olds, disenfranchised) from politics. Now we can only wish you the best of luck going forward, and hope that you lead the way in forging a United Kingdom that represents the interests of each and every one of us.

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