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Let everyone have say in EU referendum.

Byline: Kezia Dugdale HEART OF POLITICS follow @kdugdalemsp

I NEVER thought I'd say this, but I'lI will be campaigning for a Yes vote. Last week, Prime Minister David Cameron confirmed there will be a referendum on our membership of the European Union.

I will be voting to stay in Europe for largely the same reason that I campaigned for Scotland to stay in the United Kingdom - that, economically and socially, we are stronger working in co-operation with others than standing apart.

And there are many lessons we can take from our experience of last year's referendum into this next one. That an honest, democratic and lively conversation about what we want for society is healthy and that everyone should have the right to listen, participate and cast their vote.

That is how referendums should be conducted - as inclusively and democratically as possible. That is why I believe we should be opening up this debate to everyone who has a stake in our future.

Yes, those same 16 and 17-yearolds should get the opportunity to vote again. But I would go further.

When we had our referendum in September, just under 90,000 EU nationals registered to take part and it was the better for it. I believe EU nationals who have chosen to live their life here, and make the UK their home, should have the right to vote in a referendum on the future of the country.

Their talent, creativity, and a different perspective on work and culture enriches our society. Scotland is a better place for it.

Voting rights are a matter of democratic principle, so if we are to have an honest debate about our EU membership, and take the opportunity that this referendum represents, let's involve everyone who wants a say.


VOTING PLAN David Cameron

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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jun 1, 2015
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