Submission to the Smith Commission on devolution to Scotland

Simon Barrow


To coincide with publication of the cross-party agreement negotiated by the Smith Commission, Ekklesia is publishing its own submission to the Commission, made alongside contributions by around 300 civic organisations and 1,700 individuals. We highlighted to Lord Smith the need for widespread public engagement on the Heads of Agreement, and certain core principles related to subsidiarity, the localisation of power and a democratic and socially just future which needed to be at the core of an agreement on new powers which represents a truly substantial shift in the current settlement.


1. Who we are and our primary concerns

2. The proper discharge of the Commission’s terms of reference

3. Adequate time and scope for popular participation

4. Key practical principles and yardsticks to be observed
a. Subsidiarity
b. Recognition of nationhood
c. A ‘family of nations’
d. The embedding of devolved power
e. The capacity to disavow the threat of mass destruction
f. An equilibrium between powers granted and the capacity and resources to utilize them for public benefit
g. The right of civic engagement, consultation and assembly

5. Specific proposals for devolved powers and their grounding: franchise, economy, employment, energy, transport, human rights and equalities, the right to refuse participation in legally and morally flawed international wars, the right to retain membership of the European Union.

* The full report can be read and downloaded as a *.PDF (Adobe Acrobat) document here: http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/sites/ekklesia.co.uk/files/submission_to_the_s...