First Minister Nicola Sturgeon delivered the statement at Bute House, alongside Scottish Green Party co-leaders Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater.
Read the full shared policy agenda, Working Together To Build A Greener, Fairer, Independent Scotland, here.
— STV News (@STVNews) August 20, 2021
I am delighted to confirm that the Scottish Government has entered into a proposed cooperation agreement with the Scottish Greens.
‘Working together to build a greener, fairer and more independent Scotland‘ is a groundbreaking deal – both in Scottish politics and, perhaps even more so, in British politics.
More importantly, it is an agreement that responds to the challenges and opportunities of our time.
Scotland is of course more than our politics – but it is through our politics that we express our hopes for a better future and turn those hopes into reality.
We live in a time when the challenges we face have rarely been greater.
The climate emergency;
Recovery from a global pandemic;
An assault by the British Government on the powers of our Parliament;
And the consequences for our economy, our society and our place in the world of a disastrous Brexit that Scotland did not vote for.
And yet, despite the scale of these challenges, many of which are global, politics today can too often seem small – polarized, divided and unable to cope with the moment.
This deal is set to change that in Scotland.
It is about improving policy and governance.
Cooperation and collaboration – instead of division and acrimony – is, in my experience, what most people want to see a lot more from their politicians.
It is also essential if we are to find the solutions needed to solve the problems facing the world today.
And of course, this spirit of cooperation and consensus building is very much in line with the founding principles of our Scottish Parliament.
Our parties will retain our distinctive identities – this is not a coalition – and we don’t agree on everything. But we step out of our comfort zones to focus on what we agree on.
Despite all the risks inherent in any decision by two parties to cooperate more closely, we choose to work together.
And we do it – not out of political necessity – but for the common good.
The agreement calls for bold political action on pressing issues.
A commitment to more affordable housing, a better offer for tenants and measures to fight poverty and inequality.
Steps to accelerate our transition to net zero – more support for active travel, home energy transformation and a ten-year transition fund for the North East of Scotland.
A focus on green jobs and fair labor – and a sustainable Covid recovery.
And actions to improve mental health and reform public services – including the creation of a national care service.
We also reaffirm in this agreement our shared commitment to securing Scottish independence and giving citizens the right to choose the future of our country through a referendum.
The agreement also sets out the co-operation and consultation processes that will enable a stable parliamentary majority for the implementation of the Scottish Government‘s legislative and policy agenda.
And, of course, for the first time in British politics, the Greens will enter national government as ministers, working in a spirit of common endeavour, mutual challenge and collective responsibility for the people we serve.
In the coming days, this agreement will be reviewed by our respective parties. I would highly recommend it to mine.
But the publication of this agreement today marks a historic moment.
He recognizes that the status quo is not enough in the times we live in.
He grasps that – by great challenge – a better world and a better Scotland is capable of being born.
And he understands that getting there will take boldness, courage and a willingness to do things differently.
That’s what we offer.
I want to thank the Scottish Greens for the constructive process that led us to this agreement and say how much I hope we will work together in the years to come to ensure a greener, fairer and more independent Scotland than we know possible.