Scotland's democracy

Across the world there is increasing worry that people are losing faith in democracy – so let's not have that happen in Scotland, by reforming and enhancing our democracy right now.

Scotland is too centralised and Holyrood has been too orientated around the control of political parties. And as with the experience of the two Citizens’ Assemblies which have been held so far, every time citizens are allowed to become more involved in policy-making, they do a visionary job of it and drive ideas further forward than has happened in the parliament. In fact, it is the report of one of those Citizens’ Assemblies which forms the core of ALBA’s proposals for democracy.

Democracy is too important to let it grow stale.

Scotland's parties are too powerful, its parliament not powerful enough.

It is time to give real power back to Scotland's communities.

Trust citizens to drive Scotland forward.

ALBA will advocate:

  • Reform of Holyrood, including taking the appointment of the Conveners of Committees out of the hands of political parties and putting it in the hands of parliament.
  • Bringing real power back to Scotland's communities by building a proper system of local democracy.
  • Implementing the radical proposal from the first Citizens’ Assembly and create a second Citizens’ Chamber for Holyrood which could sit in the Royal High School on Calton Hill.
  • The best means of election or selection can be discussed but the intent is clear.
  • It would be like a permanent Citizens’ Assembly, 100 people given the powers to review the legislation produced by Holyrood, produce its own ideas and hold inquiries into anything it likes.
  • Follow the lead of the success of the Citizens’ Assemblies and find more ways to involve citizens directly in decision-making with initiatives like Citizens’ Juries and Participatory Budgeting.
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