Elections to the Scottish Parliament took place on 5 May. The Countryside Alliance published its manifesto in April in order to put our rural priorities to candidates.
The Scottish Parliament already has responsibility for healthcare, housing, policing and the environment. By the end of the next Parliament, it will have even greater powers which will make it one of the most powerful devolved administrations in the world. It is essential that the needs of rural communities are at the heart of decision making in the next Parliament and the Countryside Alliance called upon MSP candidates to support the policies in our manifesto.
Our manifesto focuses on five areas that we believe are crucial to ensuring a sustainable and vibrant future for the Scottish countryside:
- Improve digital communications and access to high speed broadband
- Support farmers and producers through promoting Scottish produce
- Prevent increasing isolation of rural communities by rural proofing all policies
- Protect rural services through fair funding and innovative solutions
- Ensure legislation relating to wildlife management is based on principle and evidence
The next Parliament will have many rural challenges to address including how to deliver superfast broadband, increase the availability of affordable homes and ensure access to services when high street banks and shops are closing. The next Parliament will also have the task of implementing the Land Reform (Scotland) Act and the recommendations of Lord Bonomy’s Review of the Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Act which need to be based on the interests of rural communities.
Download the manifesto here CA Scottish_Manifesto_2016_06.