Thursday, 24 November 2016
In this most turbulent of years, we must stand firmly against racism- Kezia Dugdale, Scottish Labour Party
Last year, the annual St Andrew's Day March sent a powerful message that refugees are welcome in Scotland.
A humanitarian tragedy was unfolding across the globe, and the STUC led the charge for those of us who believe in compassion.
Since then, our world has witnessed one of the most turbulent years in living memory.
Along with the STUC I campaigned for Britain to remain in the EU, but the referendum result did not go our way.
It was disappointing not least because of the economic consequences, such as the detrimental impact on the Scottish jobs and investment that the STUC fights for every single day.
But it was equally distressing because of the rise our country has witnessed in hate crime.
The vote across the UK was a result of years of growing distance between people with power and the people who power is exercised upon, yet there were those in the Leave campaign who used EU migrants as scapegoats.
Since June, an argument about the future of our country has been reduced to the sickening sight of Tory MPs arguing over whether EU migrants get to stay in our country, with increasingly xenophobic rhetoric seeping out from around Theresa May’s Cabinet table.
Across the Pond, the recent US presidential election brought out an even darker side of humanity, and the divisions caused by Donald Trump’s racist campaign will take years to heal.
Scottish Labour stands against those who wish to divide us, and stands firmly against racism wherever it may be found.
Scotland has a proud record of tolerance, but we must never be complacent and pretend to ourselves that our nation is immune to racism and hatred.
Kezia Dugdale MSP,
Leader of the Scottish Labour Party
For details of the St Andrew's Day Anti-Racism March see the STUC Website or the St Andrew's Day Facebook Page