Stronger for Scotland: towards a decade of delivery

In government, the SNP has a strong record of delivery. Our list of achievements is long and wide-ranging – and all delivered at a time of cuts to Scotland’s budget by the Tories at Westminster.

Trust in the Scottish Government is now three times higher than trust in the UK Government – and is now the highest of any national government in the EU. And, quality of life in Scotland is now ranked the best in the UK.

Here’s just some of what we have achieved in just under ten years in government.

A stronger economy

  • Employment is 67,000 above its pre-recession peak.

  • Scotland continues to outperform the rest of the UK on female employment, youth employment and unemployment.

  • We’ve slashed or abolished business rates for almost 100,000 small and medium-sized business premises.

  • The number of registered businesses has increased by 12 per cent to an all-time high.

  • Typical pay in Scotland is now higher than in England – for the first time.


A healthier NHS

  • Our NHS budget at a record high.

  • Over £5 billion has been invested in Scotland’s health infrastructure since 2007, including the South Glasgow Hospitals and Emergency Care Centre in Aberdeen.

  • This year 90 per cent of NHS Scotland patients rated their care and treatment as good or excellent – the highest rating on record.   

  • The number of nurses, doctors and dentists working in Scotland’s NHS has increased. Staffing is at historically high levels – up more than 11,000 under the SNP.

  • Free prescriptions have been protected, saving people with chronic conditions over £100 a year.

  • Scotland’s hospital A&E performance has been the best in the UK for the last 18 months of published data.  


A smarter Scotland

  • Free, high quality childcare has been increased to 16 hours a week for all 3 and 4 year olds – up from 12.5 hours in 2007 – and extended to 2 year olds from low income households too.

  • 607 schools have been rebuilt or refurbished between 2007 and 2015 – over 250 more than under the previous administration.

  • We have abolished university tuition fees for first-time under-graduates, ensuring education is based on the ability to learn; not the ability to pay.

  • The number of students from the poorest communities starting university is up under the SNP. And, we’ve committed to ensuring that, by 2030, students from the most deprived 20 per cent of communities will represent 20 per cent of all university entrants.


A fairer Scotland

  • Poverty is down. After housing costs, there were 260,000 fewer people in poverty in 2014 than there were in 2000.

  • More than 80 per cent of Scots are now paid the Living Wage of £8.25 an hour.

  • We have exceeded our target of building 30,000 affordable homes by March 2016, including over 20,000 homes for social rent. We’ve also scrapped Right to Buy, and have now built over 5,000 council homes.

  • We have ensured that no-one in Scotland has to pay the Bedroom Tax, protecting up to 72,000 households from the threat of eviction or becoming homeless.

  • Scotland has become a leading light on LGBTI equality, with one of the most progressive equal marriage laws in the world.

  • The voting age for Scottish Parliament and local government elections has been permanently lowered to 16, starting from May 2016.


A safer Scotland

  • Crime has fallen to the lowest level for 42 years.

  • There are more police officers keeping our communities safe.

  • The number of homicide victims is down by over 50 per cent since 2006-07 – the lowest since 1976.

  • Crimes of handling offensive weapons, such as knives, are down 69 per cent under the SNP – and maximum penalties for the offence are up.


A greener Scotland

  • Scotland has already exceeded our world-leading climate target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 42 per cent by 2020.

  • Scotland is leading on climate change – we outperform all UK nations on reducing carbon emissions and all but one EU-15 country.

  • Renewable electricity output has more than doubled since 2007, with renewables now the largest contributor to electricity generation in Scotland.

  • We are safeguarding our environment by putting in place a moratorium on fracking and by blocking underground coal gasification.


Supporting rural and remote communities

  • £400 million is being invested to deliver superfast broadband to 95 per cent of properties across Scotland by the end of 2017. And, we’ll reach 100 per cent by 2021.

  • We have put in place a presumption against rural school closures, through a clear and focused legal framework which provides for issues wider than just financial considerations.

  • We have passed the Land Reform Act that will introduce major changes to how Scotland’s land is owned and managed, ensuring that Scotland’s land is an asset that benefits the many.

  • Road Equivalent Tariff has been rolled out to all ferry routes in the Clyde and Hebrides, cutting fares by around 40 per cent. And, we’re committed to reducing ferry fares on services to Orkney and Shetland too.

  • Residents of Caithness and north-west Sutherland, Colonsay, Islay, Jura, Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles are now eligible for a 50 per cent discount on air fares.