Christina Carlisle

Christina Carlisle is voting Yes to Scottish Independence on when Indyref2 comes around. Read why here, and if you like it, share with your friends.

At 6.14pm on January 2nd of this year, after a quick slice across my stomach and the bizarre sensation of someone's hands rummaging around under my skin, my daughter was born. "She's wide awake" said a surgeon and moments later my fiancé handed her onto my chest. I remember vividly getting wheeled out the theatre feeling an all consuming, fiercely protective love for the beautiful little girl in my arms. 

Whilst I don't sit in my kitchen sipping tea and talking to myself about it, my decision on the referendum can't help but be influenced by thoughts of my daughter's future. What sort of a country do I want to her to grow up in? What kind of values do I want her raised with? 

Like many, I've watched the actions of the Labour and Conservative governments of my lifetime with gloom and resignation. As someone who has worked across various support worker roles, I've seen the knock on effects of the cuts to public spending that both parties promise to implement further if they get into government at the next general election.  I've supported people in cold, dark homes with deteriorating mental health who are trying to avoid the high interest loan companies knocking at their door coming to take their furniture away. I've written Community Care Grant applications outlying exactly why a mother of two needs money to buy a cooker and a fridge, only to have them knocked back and gone to appeal. I've worried endlessly for my mother as she gets another work capability form through the door, which is woefully inadequate at assessing the impact of mental health issues on peoples lives (Can she raise her arms above her head? How far can she walk before she gets out of breath?) I've seen first hand the effects that the Victorian sounding 'austerity measures' have on the lives of real people and it disgusts me. 

Which brings me back to the question, what sort of world do I want my daughter raised in? What sort of values do I want her to have? While I'm under no illusions that independence will bring about a socialist utopia, I feel that an independent Scotland offers the potential for the kind of change that simply isn't possible under the governance of two parties that seem intent on a race to the bottom in terms of social welfare, each eager to court back voters who are defecting further and further to the right. I want my daughter to be raised in a country that values social justice and the wellbeing of its poorest and most vulnerable. I want her to live in a country where political participation can make a real difference. I want her to be kind and to be engaged in the wellbeing of something bigger than herself. In the independence movement, I've been amazed and inspired by the strength of the collective desire for something better and for real change. I want to see that passion and energy taken forward and used to create a fairer country for all of us. 

Should Scotland be an independent country? I want my daughter to know that on September 18th, I said yes.