SCOTLAND’S first Citizens’ Assembly will meet digitally today to agree “a shared vision of our country’s future”.
The group of 100 broadly representative Scots have been meeting throughout the year to discuss some of the country’s major constitutional issues.
Members have been asked to consider three questions, the first of which is: “What kind of country are we seeking to build?”
The assembly will meet online to develop the vision, having examined issues such as finances and taxation, and discussed how decisions are taken for and about Scotland. A report of the meeting will be published on October 9.
The other two parts of the Assembly’s remit – how to best overcome the challenges the country faces, including Brexit, and how to empower people to make “informed choices” about Scotland’s future – will be addressed in a final report by the end of the year.
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Assembly convener Kate Wimpress said: “The meeting this weekend will see a group of people from all walks of life across Scotland come together to agree a shared vision of our country’s future.
“The Citizens’ Assembly’s vision for Scotland will help give a roadmap for the country at an uncertain and difficult time.
“Our members have worked hard together across the months, and it’s exciting to witness their efforts now coming to fruition.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced the creation of the Citizens’ Assembly and outlined its remit, but she stressed it would be independent from Government following criticism it was set up to garner independence support.
Constitution Secretary Michael Russell said the Scottish Government is spending £1.37 million to fund six assembly meetings, which were held in person before moving online following the coronavirus lockdown.
He also said members will receive a £200 “gifts of thanks” for taking part, with the additional funding to provide expenses to support people attending the discussions.