Kirk to host politicians at hustings event

The Church of Scotland will hold a public hustings event during its annual General Assembly with representatives from the five main political parties.

People's Politics event

People’s Politics: GE 2017 will be open to the 900 commissioners attending the annual gathering in Edinburgh as well as to the general public. The Moderator Designate Rev Dr Derek Browning will chair the discussion. If you cannot attend the event you will be able to view the proceedings via the webcast accessible from the Church website.

The five political parties at People’s Politics: GE 2017 will be represented by:

  • Ian Blackford (Scottish National Party)
  • Iain Gray (Scottish Labour)
  • Patrick Harvie (Scottish Green Party)
  • Alex Cole-Hamilton (Scottish Liberal Democrat)
  • Jeremy Balfour (Scottish Conservative

The event, which will take place from 4:30pm-6pm on Wednesday 24 May in the General Assembly Hall, will present the politicians with three personal stories via short  videos.

Each of the 90-second clips will end with a question for the panel, followed by an opportunity for audience members to ask their own questions.

The videos will feature: Rev Anita Stutter talking about the impact of Brexit on EU nationals; Deborah Leddie, from the non-profit WEvolution, discussing her experience of the welfare system; and Rev Tamu Ina Maramba from Sumba, Indonesia talking about climate change.

Rev Dr Richard Frazer, convener of the Church and Society Council, said:

“So much has changed in the political world over recent years that people are left uncertain and frequently anxious and divided about what the future might hold.

“As the General Election approaches it is more important than ever that we model a different type of politics, a politics that listens to the voices of those whose voice often goes unheard.

“This People’s Politics event is an opportunity for our politicians and for all of us to hear these voices and collectively consider how we can work towards a society in which all may flourish and encounter life in all its fullness.”

The Kirk and three other UK churches, working together as the Joint Public Issues Team, last week published a new election briefing on Faith in Politics, which looks at some key issues in a nonpartisan way, through the lens of faith. You can download Faith in Politics (as a pdf file) here.

Tickets are available from Eventbrite.

You can register to vote until 11:59 pm on 22 May.