Socialist Worker

Sturgeon’s not so different over coronavirus

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2702

Is Sturgeon taking a very different road to Westminster?

Is Sturgeon taking a very different road to Westminster? (Pic: Ninian Reid on Flickr)


Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon has started talking about a “new normal”. Not for the first time during the coronavirus crisis she echoed ministers in the Westminster parliament.

The press has been full of praise for the Scottish National Party (SNP) leader’s handling of the crisis—with even a depressing suggestion of a Clap for Nicola.

But Scotland too has seen its care home residents forgotten, where nearly half of all deaths have occurred.

Its carers have had to fight for personal protective equipment. They are meant to be grateful for a deal reached earlier this month to pay them £9.30 an hour to risk their lives.

The SNP followed the Tories to abandon contact tracing on 12 March. Scotland now has a death rate unbecoming of the supposed nationalist land of milk and honey.

Similarly, its strategy for testing key workers has focused on a return to work.

Swan

It has also been revealed that the SNP sat on the findings of a 2015 flu pandemic exercise called Silver Swan that a former chief medical officer described as “prophetic”.

Sturgeon wrote in The Herald newspaper about “how to build a better Scotland” in the future. She talked of “inevitable changes in the labour market” and that “public services will also have to change”.

The Scottish government’s new Advisory Group on Economic Recovery is stuffed with pro-business figures.

Going on past practice from the SNP, the left should prepare for battle.

 


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