New Year Resolutions

Monday 29th December 2014


A column for the New Year wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the New Year’s resolutions.

At this moment in time, millions of individuals across the world will be taking the opportunity to recognise their shortcomings and promising to get into better habits, whether it’s a commitment to stop smoking, to get more exercise or to spend more time with the family.

I hope that politicians are also looking to the future and are writing down some New Year’s resolutions of their own.  If they are doing so, there would be two things that I hope would be at the top of the list.

The first would be a promise to make devolution work by using the significant powers the Scottish Parliament already has, as well as the additional powers that are on the way, in order to change people’s lives for the better.

By change I mean such things as ensuring that we make work pay, that our young people get access to good quality jobs, that those people who want to return to college to have a second chance of getting an education have the opportunity to do so, and reducing the scourge of anti-social behaviour in our communities.

Second, and just as importantly, I hope that politicians also make a resolution to bring the country together, both young and old and both ‘yes’ and ‘no’ voters. A united society is a stronger society and is better placed to make significant progress on the issues that matter to people’s everyday lives.