Greens 'would not' campaign with Alex Salmond for Scottish independence

Patrick Harvie spoke ahead of the party's launch of the first 'Green Paper' vision for independence.

Scottish Greens ‘would not’ campaign with Alex Salmond for independence, says Patrick Harvie The Scottish Greens

The Scottish Greens would not campaign alongside Alex Salmond or the Alba Party for independence, Patrick Harvie MSP has stated.

Laying out the first of a series of papers detailing the party’s vision for an independent Scotland, the Scottish Greens co-convener said there would be no “great value” to campaigning alongside Salmond who, Harvie said, was “tarnished by his own behaviour”.

He told STV News: “I don’t really think there would be any great value in bringing in someone whose reputation has been pretty badly tarnished by his own behaviour and the values that he’s associated with now.”

When asked if the Greens would work with the Alba Party, founded in 2021 and led by Salmond, Harvie said: “I certainly would be uncomfortable having association with a party that doesn’t sign up to the inclusive vision of an equal Scotland that embraces the human rights of all marginalised groups.”

Harvie’s statements come as the party published the first of a series of papers aiming to outline the possibilities of independence.

Within the paper, the party also make the case for a Universal Basic Income to be introduced for all Scots.

The policy is proposed along with the roll out of stronger public services and a Real Living Wage for all.

Launching the paper, co-leader Lorna Slater said: “Our Green vision for an independent Scotland is a distinct one that works for people and the planet. The two always have to go together. The cost crisis and the climate crisis are the same crisis. You can’t have climate justice without social justice.”

The paper states: “Scotland spends millions every year undoing the damage of austerity, mitigating the bedroom tax and the benefits cap. While Tory governments attack trade unions, the Scottish Government is ensuring that it only supports companies who pay their workers a Real Living Wage.

Lorna Slater speaking at the launch of the paper.

“With independence, Scotland can ensure that everyone has enough to get by, with proper social security, strong public services and a Universal Basic Income.

“Scotland can shift the balance of power in our economy by taxing wealth fairly, protecting trade unions and paying workers what they deserve with a Real Living Wage for all.”

The Green Papers, Independence: For People, For Planet, aim to set out “how the Scottish Greens would use the powers of independence to build a country which works for people and for planet”.

The Greens, along with the Scottish Government are working to make the case for an independent Scotland inside the European Union.

The Scottish Government’s prospectus is being published separately in a series of papers entitled Building a New Scotland.

The 16-page document from the Scottish Greens states: “For far too long, we have been subjected to Westminster governments that Scotland did not vote for; governments more concerned with making themselves and their friends richer no matter the cost to our communities, our public services or our environment.”

It argues that with independence Scotland could “ban oil and new gas fields and deliver a Just Transition away from fossil fuels”.

It continues: “Scotland can supercharge this shift with a Green New Deal which invests in our communities, our workers and our future.”

The paper argues for the rights of nature to be enshrined into law with investment in wildlife protection and to “undo the damage done by Brexit deregulation and make sure Scotland is a world leader in environmental standards and protection”.

As well as re-joining the EU, the party say Scotland should remain committed to the European Convention on Human Rights.

It is also suggested that Scotland can become an “anti-racist nation” by working with communities of colour and “recognising Scotland’s role in slavery and colonialism.

The Greens have also laid out suggestions for A Feminist Scotland which would include ‘gender budgeting’ and ending the gender pay gap and the so-called ‘rape clause’ which forces women to prove a third child was the result of sexual assault in order to receive benefits.

In a section entitled A Happier Scotland the Greens propose putting “wellbeing at the heart of the economy” and the introduction of a “four day working week with no loss of pay”.

Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater at the launch of the paper.

The party propose to fix what they call the “democratic deficit” with the introduction of a citizens’ constitutional convention.

Scotland would become a welcoming country with by ending the “hostile environment” policy making on immigration and by upholding the Refugee Convention and treating refugees and asylum seekers with “the respect they deserve”.

Under Green policy, Scotland would recommit to the 0.7% target for international aid, which was dropped by Westminster and “get nuclear weapons out of Scotland” using the billions currently spent on Trident to “promote peace around the world”.

In a closing statement, the paper says: “Scotland could continue with more of the same. We could continue to leave so many of our big decisions in the hands of Westminster governments.

“Or Scotland can decide to do things differently. We can tackle all of the crises and challenges we face with the powers of a normal country.”

The Alba party have been contacted for comment.

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