A plan for Scotland: the Scottish Government's programme for Scotland 2016-2017

The Scottish Government's Programme for Government 2016 to 2017 sets out the actions we will take in the forthcoming year and beyond.

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Foreword By The First Minister

The Scottish Government that I lead will do what we can for each of us every day of this five year parliament

The Scottish Government has a plan. It is a plan that I am asking all of us to get behind

As First Minister, my job is to serve and represent everyone in Scotland. There is no 'us and them' in Scotland - only us. The Scottish Government that I lead will do what we can for each of us every day of this five year parliament.

The Scottish Government has a plan. It is a plan that I am asking all of us to get behind.

It is a plan to build a more prosperous nation with a dynamic, sustainable and inclusive economy, with public services that put people's needs first, and where every individual has true equality of opportunity.

The plan envisages a vibrant, inclusive, open, outward-looking Scotland. It is a vision that I believe is shared by a majority of people in Scotland. Indeed, it is one of the main reasons that Scotland voted decisively to stay in the EU in the referendum earlier this year.

Despite all the promises made in the 2014 independence referendum that a No vote then was the only way for Scotland to remain part of the EU, Scotland now faces the very real prospect of being removed from the EU against our will.

This is not in Scotland's national interest and it runs counter to the democratic will of the people. More than that, being removed from the EU will hurt our economy and many aspects of the culture and society that we cherish. That is why I am determined to do all I can to secure Scotland's relationship with, and place in, Europe.

Despite the referendum result - and the fact that it makes many of our challenges even tougher - this Government is determined to get on with the job of delivering the policies that are important to the people of Scotland.

This Programme for Government focuses on the themes of an education system providing opportunities for all, an economy with more jobs and fair work, public services fit for the future, empowering people and communities through strengthened local democracy and safeguarding Scotland's place in the world. We are committed to maintaining a focus on the crucial priorities of day-to-day government on which we were elected.

Our top priority is to raise standards in schools and close the attainment gap, delivering opportunities to our young people no matter their family background.

We are also investing in our economic future to support jobs and growth. We are investing in health services and reforming the NHS to meet the challenges of a changing population. We are implementing our reforms to the way land ownership works. For the future, we are building a Scottish social security system based on dignity and respect.

This plan focuses on the key legislative and practical steps that the Government will take - a full programme of new Bills and a host of other actions - to continue the process of making Scotland a better place. It is a Programme for Government that will deliver on the promises we have made. I am proud to commend it to the Scottish Parliament and to the people of Scotland.

Rt Hon Nicola Sturgeon MSP
First Minister of Scotland


Email: Gavin Henderson, gavin.henderson@gov.scot

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