Yes Scotland welcomes new pro-independence group at Holyrood
Yes Scotland welcomes the formation of a new pro-independence parliamentary group of five MSPs at Holyrood.
Blair Jenkins, the chief executive of Yes Scotland, said: "I’m delighted at this news. There is an ever-growing family of people of different political beliefs and affiliations, and many of none, who are becoming convinced that Scotland’s future is as an independent nation in its own right. It’s great that there are yet more voices in the parliament in support of a Yes vote in the 2014 referendum."
Patrick Harvie (pictured) and Alison Johnstone of the Scottish Green Party have reached an agreement with independent MSPs Margo MacDonald, Jean Urquhart and John Finnie to establish theIndependent/Green Group under the Parliament's Standing Orders. The working group will give the MSPs representation on the Parliamentary Bureau which decides parliamentary business, in turn providing the MSPs with further opportunities to contribute to debates in the Chamber.
They said in a statement:
"The five of us have discussed ways in which we can work together, and after taking advice from colleagues on our options, have decided to form a grouping to enhance our ability to represent our constituents. Although every member of our grouping is pro-independence and believes strongly in a more equal, sustainable Scotland, it is by no means a formal, party-based arrangement."
Mr Jenkins added: "This is the biggest and most important decision that Scotland will ever have to make about the future of our country. It is the people's referendum and the people's campaign and it will be won at grass-roots level the length and breadth of Scotland."
Green Yes launched in Edinburgh today with a host of high profile speakers and a wide ranging discussion of the opportunities of independence.
A former Labour Party researcher at Holyrood has given her support to the Yes campaign and is hopeful that more members of her old party will join her.
Pauline Ward from Clydebank was content with a devolved Scottish Parliament until concluding that an independent Scotland would not have illegally invaded Iraq in 2003.
Now a member of the Scottish Greens, Pauline thinks the Labour MSP group are unrepresentative of the party's constitutional views as a whole and that those in favour of social justice want a Tory-free future.
Green councillor Maggie Chapman explains that changing the perception of women’s contribution to society and the economy is one of the most important things we can do in the new Scotland.
Businesswoman Helen MacDonough explores the chances offered to women by Scotland becoming independent.