Future of Scotland campaign
23 June 2012
Embargoed until 00:01 24 June
PUNCH AND JUDY-STYLE POLITICS IS MISSING THE POINT
More than 70% of people feel shut out of debate about Scotland’s future but a clear majority support wider debate and more powers
An Ipsos MORI poll commissioned by the Future of Scotland campaign has found that a clear majority of people think politicians have failed to involve them in the discussion about Scotland’s constitutional future.
The survey to seek the public’s views on the independence referendum found:
- 71% of people don’t think politicians have encouraged them to engage in the debate about Scotland’s future
- 69% of people still have not had any involvement in the debate
- 68% of people want to have a wider debate about Scotland future considering all possible alternatives for the future – support is equally strong among those who support independence (66%) and those who oppose it (66%)
- With the exception of defence, foreign affairs and international development, a clear majority support the Scottish Parliament taking responsibility for important issues i.e. tax (57%), the economy (57%), employment law (64%), welfare and benefits (67%), energy (64%), the environment (69%), sport and culture (69%), and housing and homelessness (80%)
- The top five most important issues facing Scotland today are thought to be the economy (51%), unemployment (21%), education (21%), public spending cuts (20%) and Scottish independence (16%)
Alison Elliot, Convener, SCVO and Chair of the Future of Scotland campaign, said:
“These results show that the majority of people are ready for a wide-ranging debate about the Future of Scotland which is rooted in the issues and challenges they face. They want to go beyond Punch and Judy-style politics
“People want to have their say on what matters most to them – money, jobs and education. It’s time for politicians to listen to them and build a vision for Scotland based on what voters want so that people can make an informed choice come referendum day.”
Robin Parker, President of NUS Scotland, speaking as part of the Future of Scotland campaign, said:
“Clearly we still have a long way to go to making students, young people and other segments of society feel part of the debate about Scotland’s future. Although we don’t have a view on more powers in Scotland, it’s clear that politicians need to set out how they will make all the options for Scotland’s future available to the people of Scotland. The politicians need to listen to the overwhelming majority of Scots who feel shut out of the debate, and put forward their vision of a post-referendum Scotland.
“We also can’t ignore the fact that 16 and 17 year-olds who should be able to have a say in the future of their country won’t be able to. They should be given the opportunity to vote in the referendum and all elections that follow.”
Notes to editors:
- The Future of Scotland campaign is made up of ten members – Action of Churches Together in Scotland (which encourages people to engage in the debate about the values they want to underpin society), the Centre for Scottish Public Policy, the Church of Scotland, Faith in Community Scotland, the Institute of Directors Scotland, National Union of Students Scotland, Reform Scotland, Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations Scotland, Scottish Trades Union Congress and Scottish Youth Parliament.
- The Future of Scotland website can be viewed at www.futureofscotland.org
- 1,003 members of the public were surveyed by Ipsos MORI on 7-13 June 2012
- Read the briefing on the Ipsos MORI poll
- For more information contact Charlotte McNeill on 0779 060 1995