Railways bring people together

28 November 2013

'Railways are designed to bring people together. Family reunions, business meetings, and tourism, to name just three. In the UK this works seamlessly. You can buy a ticket from Perth to Penzance, pay in cash or online, and enjoy your visit without worrying about customs, currency conversions, and passport controls. Alex Salmond's vision of an independent Scotland puts this kind every day activity in doubt. He doesn't know what currency we would use. He doesn't know if our neighbours might apply border controls. He doesn't know if you would have to pay import duty on the whisky you might take as a gift.

'If Scotland is not in the UK or the EU – and Alex Salmond cannot say for sure whether we will be or not – all these problems become real possibilities. Workers will no longer enjoy the guaranteed freedom to transfer for a promotion. Business on both sides of the border will suffer as competition inevitably replaces co-operation. Workers' rights will surely be eroded as employers – such as INEOS – exploit division to force a drive to the bottom in the name of international competitiveness.

'These are just a very few of the problems which can be avoided very simply. Scots can choose a positive future for all of the people in the UK. Scots can enjoy the best of both worlds, creating a distinct Scottish model within the UK. Scots can choose to lead by example. Scots can benefit from open markets within the UK, the EU and have a strong voice in the world by being part of a global power. Scots can choose to be proud of a shared history and can choose to shape the future both for ourselves and for our brothers and sisters in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

'Alex Salmond is an isolationist. His is a negative vision based on envy and blame. He speaks the language of division and deceit. It is an ugly and depressing view. The slogan of the trade union movement is Unity is Strength. Let us go forward together – Better and Stronger.'

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