Why Scotland leaving the UK would not solve anything - Pamela Nash

We are currently living in a period of uncertainty and rapid change.

Scottish independence supporters are on the march. Picture: JPIMEDIA
Scottish independence supporters are on the march. Picture: JPIMEDIA

The most visible sign of this is our new Prime Minister who appears to be making a “no deal” Brexit a more likely and imminent outcome, something that the vast majority of people living in Scotland are against and will no doubt be feeling fearful about.

So it is no surprise to see, in reaction to this, the first poll in a while to show a slim majority of support for Scottish independence. We have seen this in response to political upheaval before, with independence taking a lead in the polls in the lead up to Jeremy Corbyn becoming leader of the Labour Party and in the aftermath of the Brexit vote.

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But these leads were short-lived. Of course, it remains to be seen if this one will be too. The fact remains, whilst we are all seeking answers to our current problems, breaking up the UK does not solve any of them.

The steep challenges that Scotland would face if we broke away from the rest of the UK remain unchanged. This includes inevitable tax rises and public service cuts, which would hit the poorest in society hardest, as we attempted to tackle the enormous deficit of 7.9% (four times that of the UK’s). A route back into the European Union is not clear and would be impossible as it stands with a deficit of that magnitude (current rules state that it must be below 3%).

I can already hear the cybernat keyboard warriors typing in response, “There she goes, talking Scotland down.” However, that is not the case. This is simply being realistic about the resources at our disposal and coming to the conclusion that we are better off as part of the UK. And it shows; we currently live in the most successful political and financial union the world has ever known. If it did not exist, we would need to invent it.

And Scots know it. There have been nearly 100 polls since the first independence referendum (that we were promised was once-in-a-generation) and 87 per cent of those polls have found majority support for remaining in the UK. The very last thing that Scotland needs now or in the foreseeable future is another divisive independence referendum and more constitutional chaos.

Whatever your views on Brexit, or Boris, independence is not the answer - we are absolutely stronger together.

Pamela Nash

Chief executive of Scotland in Union