19 September 2014
*New constitutional settlement needed for the UK
*Only a People’s Constitutional Convention can deliver the real change we need
In the wake of the Scottish referendum, which saw the highest turnout at a UK election (85%) since 1951, the Green Party is backing calls for a People’s Constitutional Convention to be established to consider radical changes to the entire governance of the UK.
The Scottish referendum process has drawn into sharp focus the urgent need for a new constitutional settlement that puts power back in the hands of the people.
In a policy briefing (1) released today (September 19th), the Green Party argues that giving the people of Scotland greater powers to decide their own affairs must be matched by further radical reforms that redistribute power away from an increasingly out-of-touch, Westminster elite.
Green MP Caroline Lucas has written an open letter (2) to the leaders of the three big Westminster parties urging them to make a genuine commitment to democracy.
The Green Party is committed to the guiding principle that power flows upwards from the people rather than downwards from an over-centralised state.
Only a genuinely radical new settlement including meaningful electoral reform, a fully-elected Upper House, a written constitution, greater powers for local and regional government, the extension of the right to vote to all 16 year-olds, and a process that allows the total recall for all elected politicians, will transform the governance of the UK so that it works for the common good. The Green Party will argue for the new settlement to be subject to a referendum.
Natalie Bennett, Green Party Leader, said:
“Our governance is too important to be left to the government to decide on our behalf. The Scottish independence referendum process has underlined the fact that politicians alone cannot be trusted to draw up the blueprint for change that both people and planet desperately need.
“The ‘No’ campaign laid bare just how thoroughly undemocratic and untransparent our governance is. The Coalition government’s desperate corralling of big business to drown out the grassroots, participatory ‘Yes’ campaign revealed like never before how the revolving door between big business and Westminster politics is always spinning.”