16412799663_82464c3dc0RISE – Scotland’s Left Alliance has today published the candidates that will contest the regional lists in May’s Scottish Parliament elections bringing some well kent faces to the campaign trail and some intriguing battlegrounds, most notably in Glasgow where the list election will be competed between Patrick Harvie (Scottish Green Party), Cat Boyd (RISE), Adam Tomkins (Tory) and Rhiannon Valentine (SNP). Sitting independent MSP Jean Urquhart heads the Highlands & Islands list, trade union activist Cat Boyd tops the list in Glasgow and former SSP Lothians MSP Colin Fox is top in the Lothians.

A RISE statement declared: “RISE will be  standing ‘people’s candidates’ that have all signed up to a ‘charter of political ethics’ agreed by RISE members. If elected RISE MSPs have pledged to take a ‘workers wage’ (the average wage of a skilled worker in Scotland), keep a public log of anyone they have been lobbied by, use their position to promote marginalised and oppressed voices, and will serve a maximum of two consecutive terms in parliament to avoid political careerism.”

Cat Boyd, said it was a privilege to stand for RISE in Scotland’s biggest city: “It’s a privilege to have been selected to run in Glasgow for RISE. We’ll run a positive campaign out on the streets of our city, taking on the bad bosses who pay poverty wages, the rip-off landlords profiting out of poor housing and the politicians who have failed to represent the people. As a RISE candidate, I will do everything I can to fight for justice and equality for ordinary people and to make our voice heard in Scottish politics for long into the future.”

At a participatory Democracy Conference in December, RISE members voted for a series of radical policies in which to put to the Scottish people in May including:

  •  A maximum income of £100,000 and a minimum income of £20,000 to tackle inequality;
    –  Investing 3% of Scotland’s total economic output in creating 100,000 green jobs and 100,000 green homes to maximise Scotland’s green energy potential;
    –  A local Scottish Service Tax to replace the council tax and end cuts to local services
    –  A second independence referendum within the lifetime of the next Scottish Parliament, and for a ‘People’s Independence’ based on abolishing the monarchy and an independent Scottish currency.

25074918.jpg-pwrt3Former MSP Colin Fox, who was on the board of Yes Scotland during the independence referendum, said he was eager to take forward the RISE message of a second independence referendum within the lifetime of the next Scottish Parliament: “I’m delighted and honoured to be elected by my comrades and colleagues in RISE Lothian. 2016 is a really exciting time for Scotland’s Left Alliance. I’m particularly looking forward to putting the case forward for a second independence referendum, which RISE Supports within the lifetime of this parliament at a time of our choosing.”

Jean Urquhart MSP said: ”RISE brings a vital radicalism and freshness to Scottish Politics. I am pleased to be standing as a RISE candidate in the Highlands and Islands and look forward to what promises to be a big campaign that will put forward a progressive agenda for transformational change.”

Here is the full candidate list:
Glasgow: Cat Boyd, John Davidson, Pinar Asku, Bryan Simpson, Suki Sangha, James McEnaney, Deborah Waters, Andrew Rossetter
Lothians: Colin Fox, Natalie Reid, Calum Martin, Pat Smith, Sophia Lycouris, Basia Mindewicz
West of Scotland: Colin Turbett, Regan Marsh, Kieran McCallum, Sandra Webster, Lindsay Brown, Lindsay Webster, William Telfer
Central Scotland: Kevin McVey, Julie Silapasith, Liam Stevenson, Maria Feene, Sean Baillie, Fiona Gallagher, Derek Watson, Margaret Keenan
South of Scotland: Sarah Collins, Dan Foley, Laura Waters, John Dennis, Rosemary Dale, Stuart Cooper
Highlands and Islands: Jean Urquhart, Conor Cheyne