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Trident Debate In Scottish Parliament

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Scottish Government Debate In Holyrood Parliament On 3rd Nov Shows Scottish Government Has Failed Miserably On Trident Says GMB Scotland

The workers at Faslane and Coulport feel betrayed as there has never been a vision or strategy to how to handle the displacement of the nuclear situation says GMB Scotland

GMB Scotland, the union for shipyard and defence workers, commented on the Scottish Government debate on Trident in the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday 3rd November 2015. See notes to editors for text of motions for the debate.

Jim Moohan, GMB Senior officer, said “The Scottish Government has failed miserably on their approach to the Trident situation.  The complete ignorance on the adverse effect on jobs Scottish and UK wide is unbelievable.

Skills and experience are being forgotten against the background of a false myth on diversification. The public expect their politicians to cover all aspects of the Trident situation.

The workers at Faslane and Coulport feel betrayed by those they put their trust in. If there was another way that would protect their interests by ways of diversification this route would have been travelled decades ago. 

There has never been a vision or strategy by any Government as to how they would handle the displacement of the nuclear situation.

We unfortunately live in a hostile world.  Until all parties come to the table to discuss a creative dialogue of disarmament the myth of diversification will continue to be abused by those who wish to be morally correct yet at the same want to forget the consequences of the result on a UK level as to what would happen to those who are employed in this sector of industry."


Contact Gary Smith on 07710 618909 or 0141 332 8641 or Dave Hulse 08791 266157 or Jim Moohan 07885 868405 or GMB press office 07921 289880

Notes to editors

Text of motions:

Scottish Government Debate: Trident, Welfare or Warfare

S4M-14681 Keith Brown: Trident, Welfare or Warfare—That the Parliament notes with concern new analysis by the Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, which suggests a dramatic increase in the projected cost of the successor Trident nuclear weapons programme to £167 billion; believes that it is indefensible for the UK Government to commit billions of pounds of public money to nuclear weapons, particularly when individuals and families across Scotland and the UK are suffering from the consequences of austerity cuts, and calls on the UK Government to cancel plans for the renewal of Trident.

The Presiding Officer has selected the following amendments

S4M-14681.3 Claire Baker: Trident, Welfare or Warfare—As an amendment to motion S4M-14681 in the name of Keith Brown (Trident, Welfare or Warfare), leave out from ¯believes? to end and insert ¯recognises the number of workers in the British defence system in Scotland and throughout the UK whose employment is linked to Trident-related activities and that firm commitments must be made to the trade unions on the retention of defence workers’ jobs; believes that, in the event of the cancellation of Trident, the establishment of defence diversification agencies at Scottish and UK levels is essential to deliver a strong defence diversification strategy that provides workers with high quality employment through the retention of skills developed in the sector, while delivering a UK defence sector equipped to deal with the world and dangers that it possesses, and calls on the UK Government not to renew Trident.?

S4M-14681.1 John Lamont: Trident, Welfare or Warfare—As an amendment to motion S4M-14681 in the name of Keith Brown (Trident, Welfare or Warfare), leave 7

out from ¯notes? to end and insert ¯recognises the UK’s commitment to reduce nuclear arms and support global disarmament; agrees that the first priority of any government is to defend its people and that, in an increasingly dangerous world, having a nuclear deterrent protects against both foreseen and unforeseen threats; notes that the forecast cost of replacing the nuclear deterrent remains at between £18.6 and £24.8 billion for the overall programme and an annual running cost of £2 to £2.3 billion a year, which, spread across the lifetime of Trident, represents an annual insurance premium of around 0.13% of total UK Government spending; regrets that, by trying to present the debate over Trident as a simple choice between nuclear weapons and providing welfare, the Scottish Government is behaving in a cynical way, which insults the majority of Scots who favour the replacement of the UK’s nuclear deterrent; notes that it has been the UK Labour Party’s position for decades that Britain needs a credible independent nuclear deterrent, according to the shadow defence secretary, and suggests that the Scottish Labour Party should decide what its position is on the future of the UK’s nuclear deterrent.?

S4M-14681.2 John Wilson: Trident, Welfare or Warfare—As an amendment to motion S4M-14681 in the name of Keith Brown (Trident, Welfare or Warfare), insert at end ¯, decommission the Vanguard-class submarines and declare the UK, and UK waters, a nuclear weapons-free zone; commits to a funded jobs transition for defence workers that utilises their engineering and other key skills, and agrees that the UK, or an independent Scotland, should both end its membership of NATO on the grounds of NATO’s first-strike nuclear policy and seek alternative alliances based on mutual cooperation and human security?.


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