New Year message from Scottish Greens Co-leaders

Using our voices to make a difference

If we have learned anything during the last 12 months it must surely be about the importance of speaking up, of not being bystanders, of offering a helping hand or speaking truth to power.

From taking on the Tory chancers who wrecked the economy from Westminster, to showing solidarity with Ukraine against Russian aggression, to passing legislation in a cost of living crisis and standing up for trans rights.

Each of those moments and so many more besides have started with someone raising their voice in solidarity, outrage, bravery or with kindness. That is the lesson we should take into the year ahead.

We know from being at COP15 in Canada how our voice in encouraging nations to sign up to the Edinburgh Declaration on biodiversity has captured the imagination of the world and shown that Scotland has the capacity to lead.

What we say and what we do next can inspire and deliver meaningful change on the international stage, and comes at a time when we are also renewing Scotland’s climate and energy strategies.

As Scottish Greens in Government, through the Bute House Agreement, we are using our voices to bring our values and our creativity to areas of policy that will deliver the most profound and vital changes for our climate and nature, and for our society. For people; for planet.

We could never have done it without the collective voices of all our campaigners and supporters who helped elect us to where we are, and it is those same voices that drive us forward still, on so many issues.

Like the voices of women who never wavered in the face of intimidation at abortion clinics; they will drive us forward not just to win the campaign for buffer zones, but to get the legislation passed as soon as we possibly can, to make protection a reality.

There’s so much more to do in 2023; continuing to win the case for progressive taxation, land reform, investment in housing and education, building a fairer and greener economy, and so much more besides.

We all have a voice. This year more than any other, we should never be afraid to use it.

Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater,
Co-leaders of the Scottish Greens