Radical Summer: What it means, and why we are doing it

In Scotland around 4 million people are registered to vote. Many don’t. Scotland’s last parliamentary election saw just over half of these 4 million people vote: just over 2 million people. That means many people are not even able to participate.

It would not be unfair to characterise this as a “missing million,” but the bigger point is that democracy or the exercise of the right to vote is something that is done in greater numbers by more privileged parts of Scotland. In many ways this shapes – and distorts – political debate.

When it comes to the referendum campaign this has never been more true. Those who stand to gain most from independence are often missing from a self-serving mainstream discussion.

These are the people, the poor and disenfranchised, that the Radical Independence Campaign’s ‘Radical Summer: Another Scotland is Possible’ is going to reach, by:

  • Talking about the real issues
  • Voter Registration drive
  • Providing the information: 100,000 Radical Independence leaflets and 20,000 infographic pamphlets

Time to mobilise on the real issues

The concerns many of us have about jobs, low pay, fuel poverty, housing security, childcare, anti-social hours, welfare, and a future for our young people are not visible. Instead we have endless negativity and a parade of rich white men talking about the kinds of things that motivate other people in suits.

It’s time we changed this, and took the debate away from the ‘will they, won’t they’ monologue about the EU, currency, international dialling codes, and the future of high finance in Scotland, and brought this debate back to what it’s really about: a chance to pioneer a fairer society, raise wages, win jobs, bring back social security, and improve our collective future. To do that we need to bring the voices of Scotland’s ordinary people – many of whom are not on that voters roll – into the debate.

That is why we are launching a door to door conversation drive. With activists across Scotland visiting households in the ‘missing million’ who are not on the electoral register we are going to be signing people up to vote so that we can change the terms of the debate. There will also be street stalls and local meetings.

How are we going to do this?

In the next few weeks we will be publishing an activist guide, detailing how to do door to door canvassing in your neighbourhoods. We want to make this the best experience possible so if you have never done this sort of thing before – don’t worry, advice, support and guidance on how to be an effective vote winner will be to hand.

We will be specifically targeting communities where we know there are lots of people who are not registered to vote.

We will be holding training meetings across Scotland for activists, to ensure they have the skills and the tools they need to register thousands of Scots to vote, and to build a picture of what the real Scotland is saying on the doorsteps.

We are in a position to change the terms of the debate in Scotland. This summer we are going to be grasping that opportunity. We hope that you will get involved in your local group to lend a hand, or set up activity if there is not yet a RIC group in your area.

Another Scotland is Possible

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