A left-wing organisation that played a crucial role in the pro-independence ‘YES’ campaign has established a group in North Ayrshire.
The Radical Independence Campaign (RIC) is to hold its first local meeting in the Turf Inn, Dalry on Monday, January 26th.
During the referendum campaign the RIC was responsible for going into some of Scotland’s most deprived areas and housing estates. Taking a pro-independence message to communities with persistently high levels of unemployment and poverty, campaigners explained their left-wing vision of how “another Scotland is possible” and persuaded many residents to add their names to the electoral register. This long-running direct action is thought to have substantially increased the overall ‘YES’ vote last September.
Following the outcome of the referendum – a 10% majority for Scotland to remain within the British Union – the Radical Independence Campaign stated its members were “proud to have been part of a process that engaged communities all over Scotland and inspired a democratic revival of historic proportions”.
A spokesperson for RIC said, “As the UK austerity agenda intensifies, the need for a broad, radical social movement of the left continues.
“We were set up as something more than an independence campaign: we stand for a Scotland that supports a social alternative to austerity and privatisation. We are for a green and environmentally sustainable future; a modern, democratic republic committed to equality and opposing any discrimination on the grounds of gender, race, disability or sexuality.”
The Radical Independence Movement is an anti-war group that opposes nuclear weapons and argues an independent Scotland should not be part of the nuclear-armed North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).
The spokesperson explained, “We will act as a broad movement for change that continues to promote the idea that another Scotland is possible.
“We will endeavour to keep raising ambitions and expectations of what is possible. We demand a better standard of living for working people. We will campaign for an end to poverty wages, an end to oppressive sanctions and poor housing. We will campaign to end the scourge of unemployment. We will continue to develop a people’s movement where we speak up for millions who want change. We will work to make sure the voices of our communities are heard.
“We will continue to work with the independence movement, and will raise the need for Scotland to be an independent nation, free from the British State.”
North Ayrshire activist Heather Anderson told the3towns.today, “Locally, we will be holding street-stalls and public meetings ahead of the UK General Election in May. We want to get across the message that austerity isn’t inevitable, there is another way, another way that benefits the millions rather than the millionaires.”
Ms Anderson noted, “Our first meeting of the local branch is in the Turf Inn, Dalry on January 26th. Anyone who shares our views and ambitions for the people of Scotland is welcome to come along.
“In the Radical Independence Campaign, local branches have autonomy, so we can decide exactly how we want to take-forward the campaign in North Ayrshire.”
The North Ayrshire branch of the RIC has established a Facebook page, which contains further information on activities and campaigns.