Scottish Government called on to do the "right thing" for wronged miners
Scottish Labour have called on the SNP and Greens to “do right by wronged workers” and back a series of amendments to the Miners’ Pardon Bill.
Stage 3 amendments to the Miners' Strike (Pardons) (Scotland) Bill will be voted on later today, and Scottish Labour have lodged a series of amendments to strengthen and expand the bill, and to deliver financial compensation.
The amendments include measures that would require ministers to carry out a review of how to compensate those receiving a pardon as well as extending the pardon to family members and supporters.
Currently making its way through parliament, the Miners’ Strike (Pardons) (Scotland) Bill will see the convictions of those charged during the 1984-85 strike disregarded.
Justice secretary Keith Brown has said he hopes the new legislation, once passed, will “restore dignity to those convicted, provide comfort to their families and, I hope, will bring closure to the sense of injustice members of mining communities may feel”.
Scottish Labour MSP Richard Leonard, the party's former leader, said: “The SNP and the Greens have a chance to do right by wronged workers tomorrow and back Labour’s amendments.
“This landmark pardon is long overdue, it is welcome, but we need real justice as well which goes beyond mere symbolism.
“The SNP must ensure the bill covers all those who put their livelihoods on the line and provide financial redress for those who suffered hardship: particularly the 500 convicted miners and the 206 sacked miners.
“A striking miner was twice as likely to be convicted in Scotland and three times as likely to be sacked. That grave injustice must be addressed.”