Better Together

Scottish Independence

In the autumn of 2014 Scots over the age of 16 have the opportunity to vote on probably one of the most important decisions ever taken in Scotland.  Will we be in or out of the United Kingdom? The outcome of the referendum will be irreversible. There will be no going back. Each Scot has just one vote to determine Scotland's future. Your future, your families' future and the generations that come after us depend on us making the right choice.

Usdaw Policy on Scottish Independence

Usdaw has reached its policy stance, not by clinging to a piece of ideology but by considering what is in the best interests of the people of Scotland and our members; by carefully considering the evidence for and against independence and examining which constitutional arrangement will be more likely to provide economic prosperity and improve the overall well-being of Usdaw members and their families.

The UK is one of the world's oldest and most successful single market economies and by being part of it Scotland benefits from the freedom of movement in goods, services, people and capital. An independent Scotland would lose the stability and credibility built up over the last 300 years.

Just like two out of every three Scots – Usdaw believes that Scotland can choose to have the best of both worlds – by retaining the Scottish Parliament which legislates for many of the things that affect Scots' lives everyday without losing any of the strength and security of the UK.  Usdaw accepts that Scotland could survive as an independent nation, however Usdaw believes that Scotland is stronger as part of the UK and that the UK is stronger with Scotland as a partner.

Usdaw does not accept that the lives of our members will be improved if Scotland becomes independent, and this is why we are joining with other like-minded organisations and people in the Better Together Campaign to make a positive and strong case for Scotland remaining part of the UK family.

10 Reasons why Scotland is better being part of the UK

  1. Nationalists argue that an independent Scotland will continue to use the sterling as its currency. This means Scotland will be part of an economic Union with the rest of the UK over which it no longer has economic or political influence. Scotland will find itself in the same position as Greece, Portugal and Ireland, only instead of going cap in hand to Europe for help Scotland will be left to go cap in hand to the rest of the UK – the very same countries that an independent Scotland will have severed all social, political and cultural ties with.
  2. An independent Scotland would need to reapply to join the European Union. There is uncertainty that Scotland's re-entry would be granted quickly, if at all, whilst there is absolute certainty, that an independent Scotland would be required to join the Euro as a condition of membership. (Source:  Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, 12 September 2012)
  3. Two-thirds of Scottish exports are to England, Wales and Northern Ireland. (Source: Scottish Government)
  4. One in every five workers in Scotland is employed by English, Welsh and Northern Irish firms. (Source: HM Treasury)
  5. 31,000 Scottish Civil Servants work for UK wide Government departments. Like those based in Glasgow and responsible for the operation of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme for the whole of the UK. (Source:  HMG Departmental Employment Statistics)
  6. The future of Scottish Banks was secured with a £470 billion bail out from taxpayers across the UK. (Source: Scottish Parliament Information Centre and National Audit Office)
  7. 800,000 Scots live and work in England and Wales without the need for papers or passports. (Source:   General Registrar Office for Scotland)
  8. Being part of the UK ensures a seat at the UN's top table alongside Russia, China and America. (The UK is a permanent member of the UN Security Council.)
  9. The pensions of 1 million Scots are guaranteed by the UK welfare system. (Source:  DWP)
  10. Scottish Taxpayers contribute £53 billion to the Treasury's Tax Bill annually. Scotland receives £63 billion of the UK's overall spending. (Source:  Scottish Government spending figures, GERS)

Five ways you can help to keep Scotland in the UK

Better Together is a cross-party campaign that promotes the view held by millions of Scots that Scotland is a better and stronger country as part of the UK. Thousands of everyday Scots, some are members of political parties and trade unions and many more are not, have signed up to support the campaign which is led by Alistair Darling MP, former Chancellor of the Exchequer.

In the referendum every vote will count and everyone's voice must be heard – it is after all – the most important and biggest decision facing Scots in our lifetime. Here are five ways you can make sure your voice is heard:

  1. Give your support to the Better Together Campaign, it will only take a minute to register your support at: www.bettertogether.net/sign-up-now
  2. Sign up to become a campaign volunteer at: www.bettertogether.net/page/s/volunteer
  3. Join the Better Together National Delivery Network which means that you will receive a regular supply of Better Together Campaign materials which you can distribute in your local community. Sign up at: www.bettertogether.net/page/s/join-our-delivery-network
  4. Become a Facebook friend of the Better Together Campaign at: www.facebook.com/bettertogetheruk
  5. Follow the campaign on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/UK_TOGETHER, you could even tweet about how you have been supporting the campaign!