Scotland to Pardon Hundreds Convicted in 1984 Miners’ Strike

The Scottish government is to pardon hundreds of men convicted of offences during the 1984 miners’ strike after an independent review of the divisive and at times violent dispute. Humza Yousaf, the Scottish justice secretary, said legislation due next year would provide the miners with a collective and posthumous pardon in an effort to provide closure to mining communities and the police officers involved. “This was a bitter and divisive dispute,” Yousaf told the Scottish parliament. “Although three decades have passed, scars from the experiences still run deep. In some areas of the country, the sense of being hurt and being wronged remains corrosive.”
Yousaf and Neil Findlay, the Scottish Labour MSP who campaigned for the review and the pardon recommendation, said the UK government should revisit a decision in 2016 to reject calls for a UK-wide public inquiry into the policing of the strike, which lasted from March 1984 to March 1985, and particularly the so-called “Battle of Orgreave” in South Yorkshire. Yousaf said Scottish miners were disproportionately punished. Around 500 Scottish miners were arrested and 200 of those were sacked by the National Coal Board – about 30% of the UK total, even though only 7% of the UK workforce worked at Scottish pits.
Read more: Severin Carrell, Guardian,

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