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Scotland’s Future, Scotland’s Choice

We all know Scotland is facing significant challenges right now. COVID-19 dominates our lives and the realities of Brexit are setting in. We need to be able to act quickly and decisively to counter these challenges effectively.

But, at a time when it’s obvious that more powers are needed, Boris Johnson wants to take the powers we have away. The Scottish Parliament is currently facing an unprecedented power grab. The Tories want to undermine devolution. They know we have proven Scotland is better governed from Scotland by Scots – even with the limited powers we currently have.

Imagine what we could do if we had all the powers available? Imagine how it would feel having our own voice in the company of other nations, deciding our own future, prioritising what the people of Scotland want.

This election will be the most important election of our lifetimes. We must make sure we have a solid majority in Holyrood to enable us to take the next steps to become an independent nation after the pandemic.

In 2016, an overwhelming majority of people in Scotland voted to remain in the EU – the most successful and developed international partnership in the world.

In 2020, Scotland left the EU, in direct contradiction to the democratic will demonstrated in 2016 by the people of Scotland.

So, what has this meant for the Highlands? Since our departure from the EU, our fisheries industry has been sacrificed, our high-quality produce threatened and our young people’s opportunities abandoned.

The end to freedom of movement is catastrophic for the Highlands – an area already vulnerable to the risks of depopulation due to a falling birth rate and declining working age population. Projections from a Highland Council report show that by 2041, the population is expected to decline by 21% in Caithness, 12% in Sutherland and 14% in Easter Ross.

Despite the Scottish Government’s repeated calls for the UK government to devolve the powers that would allow Scotland to respond to its own distinct immigration needs, the UK government ploughed ahead with building an immigration system with grave consequences for the Highlands.

It’s outrageous that we’re being forced to pay such a devastatingly high price for a Tory Brexit we didn’t vote for.

But we have an alternative – independence.

Brexit has changed the game on independence. Faced with the chaotic and incompetent leadership of Boris Johnson and a Westminster system which treats Scotland as an afterthought at best, more and more people are deciding that the best way forward is for Scotland to become an equal, independent country in the EU.

In the upcoming Scottish Parliament elections, we can choose a better path for Scotland. We have what it takes to become a prosperous and thriving independent nation.

By using both votes to vote SNP in May, we’re voting to secure that future. With our people, our resources and our values we too – like other independent nations our size – can be wealthier, fairer and happier.