Comment on Shetland autonomy vote

Commenting on the vote of the Shetland Islands Council on self-determination for the islands, Highlands and Islands Conservative MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston said:

“It’s clear that there has been a growing frustration in Shetland, and across Scotland’s islands communities, that the Scottish Government neither understands nor cares for their particular needs. Nicola Sturgeon only shows up when there is an election on and the positive words around the Islands Act have too often not been reflected in actions.

“Over 13 years of SNP Government in Edinburgh, countless promises have been made to our island communities but few are ever delivered. It’s no wonder islanders have run out of patience.

“Shetland’s geography and history have made it a distinct community within Scotland and the UK. I hope that a positive discussion can be had on the future of the islands, and Scotland’s other island communities as well.

“I believe it’s right that both of our governments work with the islands to help meet the aspirations and unique needs of their people. However it is clear that the current arrangements, where so much power is centralised in Edinburgh and the needs of Shetland often ignored, is some distance from where Shetlanders want to be.”