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Rennie: Scotland can be proud of devolution achievements

May 9, 2014 5:19 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats Willie Rennie has sung theWillie RennieWillie Rennie praises of Scotland's home rule history this weekend.

Ahead of the Scottish Parliament celebrating 15 years since its first meeting in the General Assembly Hall of the Church of Scotland in 1999, Mr Rennie has said that every person in Scotland can be proud of devolution.

Marking the event this weekend, the Scottish Liberal Democrats have also published a Buzzfeed-style list setting out 15 good things about devolution.

Commenting, Mr Rennie said:

"Fifteen years ago I was thrilled to head up the first Scottish Liberal Democrat Scottish Parliament office and assist our party to form the first Scottish Government. The opening of the Scottish Parliament in the General Assembly Hall will always be remembered for the celebrations which took place not only on the Mound but across Scotland.

"Every person in Scotland can be proud of devolution. We have the best of both worlds with a strong Scottish Parliament where we shape our domestic agenda on issues like health and education, whilst working together across the UK to share the progress which comes from being part of something bigger. From free personal care for older people to land reform legislation to pioneering the smoking ban, devolution has changed lives of people in Scotland and across the UK. "

15 Years - 15 good things about devolution

1. Free personal care for the elderly - enabling older people to live at home for as long as possible

2. Land reform legislation - giving communities rights to buy land

3. Smoking ban pioneered in Scotland - protecting the individual's right to lead a healthy life if they choose to

4. Introduction of a 50% renewable energy target - building a fairer, greener society for generations to come

5. Free eye and dental checks - cutting down oral cancer and detecting serious eye conditions

6. Adults with Incapacity Act- safeguarding the welfare of adults

7. Tuition fees - scrapped

8. Freedom of Information legislation - delivering more transparency and opening up government to the people

9. New railways built at Stirling and Alloa when they were closing in the rest of the UK

10. Single transferable vote voting system for local government elections - delivering a fairer voting system for local communities

11. Free bus travel for over 65s - enabling older people to be active in their communities

12. Creation of Human Rights Commission - making human right an integral part of Scotland's culture and building a fairer society

13. Creation of the Scottish Youth Parliament - giving young people a voice in our society

14. Free school meals - giving more children the chance they need to get on in life

15. Equal marriage - celebrating love in an equal way across society