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It mostly covers my work as UNISON Scotland's Head of Policy and Public Affairs although views are my own. For full coverage of UNISON Scotland's policy and campaigns please visit our web site. You can also follow me on Twitter. I hope you find this blog interesting and I would welcome your comments.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Scottish Labour Conference 3

Day 3 and the weather breaks to remind us what a beautiful place Oban harbour is.

Traditionally this is the quiet final morning, although the attendance first thing clearly benefited from the clocks being turned back!

The main debate was the economy and skills. Brilliantly led off by Richard Leonard with his usual balance of history and radical vision. Good contributions from the floor including UNISON's Edwina Phillips, a front line careers advisor, setting out what life is like for job seeking young people in the current economic climate.

I was asked to give the vote of thanks. So many people work hard to ensure a conference of this size runs smoothly and we should give them full credit. I tried to resist rodent jokes after Harriet Harman's outburst - but failed! Too tempting. 

But it was an opportunity to point out that this was the conference when the New Labour brand was finally binned. Not before time. Although as one supporter of the ideology pointed out to me - In Scottish Labour the brand never really reached any further than the notepaper. More importantly party leaders and speakers showed at this conference that substance is more important than spin and Labour values beat market values every time.

Overall this was one of the best Scottish Labour conferences I have attended. Always good to meet old comrades, but as in the UNISON delegation, there were plenty of first time delegates. That is a good sign for the future.

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