Tue 21 May, 2013

Responding to a position paper by the Scottish Government on economic reasons for independence, Green MSP Patrick Harvie is appealing to undecided voters to consider the opportunity a Yes vote presents to create a fairer society.

The government paper points out the gap between rich and poor has been widening in the UK and the Scottish Government believes tackling inequalities will enhance Scotland's "competitive position".

A poll earlier this year for the Green MSPs showed most Scots view the prospect of a more equal society as more important in next year's referendum than whether the nation is richer or poorer.

Patrick Harvie, Green MSP for Glasgow and Co-convener of the Scottish Greens, said:

"The growing gap between rich and poor is one of the most compelling reasons to vote for independence. By deciding for ourselves how we want to run our economy we have a better chance of tackling inequality.

"To date we've witnessed successive Westminster governments in thrall to the City and its culture of greed and risk-taking, and a Scottish Government that advocates cutting corporate taxes for wealthy firms. A vote for independence would mean the people would have more of a say in our economic priorities.

"By taking a different approach to Westminster we can invest our energy revenues in the cleaner industries we must move towards. We can consider welfare systems that lift the poorest people out of poverty. And we can ensure those with broad shoulders contribute a fairer share."

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