Page 2 | EU Referendum: Webchat with Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland, Tuesday 21 June at 10.30am

(107 Posts)
BojanaMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 20-Jun-16 18:28:04


We’re pleased to announce a webchat with Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland, on Tuesday 21 June at 10.30am. Ms Sturgeon is campaigning for the UK to remain in the EU.

As well as being First Minister since 2014, Nicola is also the leader of the Scottish National Party. Before entering politics she was a solicitor, and she represents the Glasgow Southside constituency in the Scottish Parliament.

The EU referendum will be held on 23 June.

Please do join the chat on Tuesday, or if you can’t make it, please leave a question here in advance. And do bear in mind the webchat guidelines - one question each only (follow-ups allowed if there’s time) and please do be polite.


OP’s posts: |
trixymalixy Tue 21-Jun-16 08:09:10

What are you going to do to tackle the hate in Scotland aimed at No voters and unionist MPs, which has been brought into focus given the tragic death of Jo Cox? SNP MPs are feeding that hatred by calling them yoons, quislings, traitors, saying they want to "put the nut on them" and that it's fine to dispense "community justice" by hunting and harassing labour MPs?

I know that SNP MPs get abuse too, which is completely unacceptable, but you need to do something about your MPs and MSPs as this hate is poisoning Scotland.

fishybits Tue 21-Jun-16 08:21:06

I live in Scotland and have yet to meet a Scot who wishes to Remain. There are no Remain posters in this area just Leave ones everywhere.

Is the SNPs desire to Remain yet another example of the Scottish Government thinking it knows better than the Scottish population and refusing to respect democracy?

trixymalixy Tue 21-Jun-16 08:31:16

Hi fishybits, I'm a Scot. I want to remain and most of my friends are remain. The polls also show Scots want to remain.

shinytorch2 Tue 21-Jun-16 08:34:58

How will you support the fishing industry in Scotland that has been so decimated by the EU? Are you happy to see it die out?

If we vote leave will you go for IndyRef2 - how will you make the numbers stack up with oil at $50 pb compared to >$100 pb as it was last time, when your figures were much derided.

BeakyMinder Tue 21-Jun-16 08:44:49

I read in the FT that legally the Scottish Government could not give consent to Brexit because EU law is written into its constitution, so unless it could get consent from Scottish voters for Brexit, it could legally prevent the entire thing from happening.

Is that true?

fialcross Tue 21-Jun-16 09:00:01

If you get your way and have open borders, where are the homes and school places for the migrants to live ?

How and where are you going to find the money to cover the cost of the drain on NHS, schools and the social services ?

The oil industry which you thought would be your saviour is in difficulty, so how could this country survive if out of UK and in with Europe ?


prettybird Tue 21-Jun-16 09:22:47

Fishybits - I'm a Scot who lives in Glasgow. I met my first Brexiter at a party on Saturday. hmm

All my friends, family and work colleagues (both current and former) are strongly Remain.

I have one friend who voted No in the Indyref and yes, we're still friends grinwho promised me at the time that she'd apologise to me if there was an EU Referendum (she didn't believe it would happen, I said it would) and the UK. then pulled Scotland out of Europe. She confirmed to me last week that even though she hates the SNP, she'll be out on the streets campaigning for independence if the Brexit vote prevails.

prettybird Tue 21-Jun-16 09:24:12

I can't make the actual Webchat so I'm going to push my luck with a 2nd question although it's probably been asked before

What's your favourite biscuit? winkbiscuit

foolsgold Tue 21-Jun-16 09:33:51

Thank you for coming here to talk about this.

I was born in Scotland, and live and own property in France. In the event of Brexit, how would the UK parliaments support expats?

And, if I may, a second question: whatever the result on Thursday, the lead-up has been so divisive I'd like to know what your plans are for reuniting the country?

ImperialBlether Tue 21-Jun-16 09:39:40

Oh for god's sake, don't let's have questions about biscuits. That was the most embarrassing day for MN - it made everyone involved look like complete idiots.

purplevase4 Tue 21-Jun-16 09:42:07

*I read in the FT that legally the Scottish Government could not give consent to Brexit because EU law is written into its constitution, so unless it could get consent from Scottish voters for Brexit, it could legally prevent the entire thing from happening. Is that true?*

Yes is it? Are we (remainers) all worrying for nothing?

My question is, if the UK as a whole votes to leave the EU, and Scotland wants to become independent to stay in/rejoin the EU, and also, as some people have said above, wants more people, will it accept people from England who want to live in Scotland even if they have no Scottish heritage?

FlindersKeepers Tue 21-Jun-16 09:54:53

I'm a Scot in Europe on what is considered Crown Service, as I work for an International Organisation (not the EU).
Currently, an exit vote would not affect my employment, but I am concerned that any #Brexit would lead to further isolationist policies and could lead to "cherry picking" such as wanting to remain in NATO, but leave certain other international treaties and conventions.
This is something which would place many British nationals in very precarious positions with regard to employment and families, particularly as they have been outside the UK serving UK interests.

What is your position on this? Could you see the UK, or indeed an independent Scotland, moving away from these international commitments?

PS thanks for coming to Mumsnet!

MariscallRoad Tue 21-Jun-16 10:11:43

Hi Nicola. Family and myself R in favour of Remain. I read in Wikipedia that Scotland has 62.4% of the EU's proven reserves of oil, 12.5% of the EU's proven reserves of gas and 85% of the UK's hydro-electric energy resource amd leads in UK energy production from renewables. So, please tell us how energy sector and households benefit when Remain. Thanks

KateMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 21-Jun-16 10:37:29

Hi everyone and apols for the late start. The First Minister is taking part remotely from her office in Edinburgh and it looks as though they may be having some technical difficulties. We hope to get going shortly, so do stay with us.

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:40:13

Hi, everyone. Nicola here. Sorry I'm late - thanks for waiting! Ready to answer your questions!

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:45:14


Unlimited immigration means cheap nannies and cleaners for politicians and bankers, and lower wages for the working class. I believe in increasing skilled immigration into the UK, and decreasing unskilled immigration to zero. Should I vote to stay in the EU?

Hi, thanks for your question. I think freedom of movement is a real benefit of EU membership. Research shows that recent EU migrants actually made a net contribution to UK public finances of £2.5 billion in 2013-14.

We also can’t forget that it’s a two-way street - 2 million people from the UK are estimated to be living, studying or working in the rest of the EU. I think this ability to travel anywhere in the EU visa free is a good thing - particularly for our young people.

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:45:28


I live in Scotland and have yet to meet a Scot who wishes to Remain. There are no Remain posters in this area just Leave ones everywhere.

Is the SNPs desire to Remain yet another example of the Scottish Government thinking it knows better than the Scottish population and refusing to respect democracy?

Hi from someone living in Scotland who wants to Remain!
My experience is very different - most people i have spoken to (and I speak to a lot!) want to stay. Many have frustrations about the EU - but most recognise that being in the single market is good for jobs, having freedom of travel gives us lots of opportunities and working with other independent countries is essential in the modern world.
But ultimately, its not up to me - its up to the people and we all have one vote on Thursday.
Thanks for getting in touch.
best wishes

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:45:32


Have you been surprised by the amount of racism underlying some of the Leave arguments?

Hi, Iggii. Thanks for your question.

People have concerns about the impact of immigration, but my argument is that we should deal with the impact of inward migration, by investing in our public services. This is the debate we should be having; not one where people’s legitimate concerns are exploited in a way that is designed to encourage people to turn inwards. That’s what I think some of the Leave leadership has been doing - and it’s deeply regrettable.

I’ve been sickened by the behaviour of some in particular within the Leave campaign. The poster that Nigel Farage unveiled last week, for example, was vile and racist.

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:46:32


I can't make the actual Webchat so I'm going to push my luck with a 2nd question although it's probably been asked before

What's your favourite biscuit? winkbiscuit

Fave at moment is Tunnock's caramel wafer!

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:46:33


You've indicated that should the UK as a whole vote to leave the EU while Scotland votes to remain you will call a second Scottish Independence referendum. This is presumably with a view to an independent Scotland joining the EU as a separate country.

Firstly, would you seek the views of Scots before applying to join the EU?

Assuming most agree, can you give an idea of how long the application process would take, what concessions Scotland would be required to make (such as joining the Euro etc), and whether you believe we would meet the entry requirements?

Hi, Y0uCann0tBeSer10us. Thanks for your question.

I hope the scenario doesn’t arise - I hope that the UK votes overwhelmingly to stay in the EU. But, if it does, the option set out in our manifesto must be on the table for consideration.
You can watch this video, which sets out the position my further detail:

In terms of seeking people’s view on Scotland’s place in Europe, that is exactly what this referendum will show. And Scotland is already part of the EU, so by definition we already meet all the membership criteria and requirements.

During the independence referendum, the Scottish Government’s White Paper set out that, on becoming independent, we would approach EU membership negotiations on the principle of ‘continuity of effect’, meaning Scotland’s transition to independent membership would be based on those EU Treaty obligations that currently apply to Scotland.

biscuitkumquat Tue 21-Jun-16 10:46:34

Hi Nicola, I'm an SNP member.

Obviously the SNP exist to push for an independent Scotland. When Scotland do get independence, will the SNP cease to exist?

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:46:53


From people I know in England, and from reading Mumsnet and other media, immigration seems to be a really big issue which is pushing people from England to vote leave. I'm not sure that this is the case here in Scotland. How can we balance the "too much" immigration in England with the perceived need for more people in Scotland, if the vote is for us to remain in the EU?

Hi Weebarra, thanks for your question. I agree that Scotland has specific demographic and economic challenges that mean we need a different approach to immigration to that taken in the rest of the UK. Whether we stay or Leave the EU, immigration will continue to be reserved to Westminster.

With powers over immigration, we could pursue a different approach in Scotland. For example - and this is something there is a cross-party support for in the Scottish Parliament - we could re-introduce a post-study work visa. That would mean we could retain more of the skilled people who want to live and work here. Regardless of the result, we will continue to make this case.

However, the idea peddled by the Brexit campaign that Scotland would get more powers over immigration a result of a vote to leave the EU is nonsense.

ExctraCrunchyNutBrexit Tue 21-Jun-16 10:47:08

Hello Nicola, thank you for being the voice of reason in all of this.

As one of the much maligned EU citizens living here in the UK I can say I am completely bricking it. I (like many people) didn't come here for a job I came because I met and fell in love with a British citizen. I worked the whole time I lived here (and until I had my kids, who are still young).

Should Brexit happen what do you think would be the most fair way of dealing with people who are already living here?

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:49:02


What plans and preparations have the Scottish Government put in place to deal with a vote for exit if there is one?

How does the Scottish Government plan to manage an exit and combat a recession if there is one following an exit?

Is there an estimate for the administration costs of an exit?
How will a vote to leave effect our day to day lives?
What effects will we feel first?

Hi, thanks for your questions.

First of all, I hope the scenario you present doesn’t arise, which is why I am arguing so strongly for a Remain vote. But as First Minister I’m ensuring the appropriate planning for all eventualities is being undertaken by the Scottish Government. Should Scotland face the prospect of being taken out of the European Union against our democratically expressed will, all options to protection our relationship with Europe and the EU would need to be considered.

You also asked about the economic implications of a Brexit. I believe that a vote to Leave would be bad for Scotland’s economy, and hit household budgets. It would be a victory for politicians who actually believe George Osborne and David Cameron are moderates, and it would leave Scotland at their mercy.
It’s my hope that on Thursday Scotland will send a strong message that we reject this right-wing Tory agenda - by voting in big numbers to remain in the EU.

NicolaSturgeonFM Tue 21-Jun-16 10:49:23


It seems to me that each side for the Yes/No campaigns in the Scottish referendum have swapped notes for the In/Out campaign and are just using each other's argument. How does that sit with you? Because as a Yes voter breaking away from RUK I feel I should apply the same principle and vote Out of the EU.

Hi, thanks for your question - it’s one I get a lot. Quite a few folk have asked it today, so I hope my answer to you will address their points too.

I believe in independence for Scotland - but I also believe in independent countries working together for the good of all - to protect workers, tackle climate change, preserve peace, guarantee our freedom of movement, and much more. All of this happens through membership of the EU.

All 28 members of the European Union are - by definition - independent countries - and nine of them have populations smaller than Scotland.

Here's some more information on why you should vote Remain:

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