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Designing fairer devolved replacement for PIP is urgent in light of MS Society report

Tue 19 Jun, 2018

Scottish Greens Social Security spokesperson Alison Johnstone MSP has called on the Scottish Government to pay urgent attention to a new report from the MS Society which highlights the negative impact of disability welfare reforms on people with Multiple Sclerosis.

The report, published today, shows that 33% of people with MS transferred from Disability Living Allowance to Personal Independence Payment (PIP) lost support, with 10% losing entitlement entirely.

Johnstone: Universal Credit must end after damning Audit Office report

Fri 15 Jun, 2018

The Scottish Greens have welcomed a report from the National Audit Office that outlines how the UK government’s Universal Credit is causing hardship for claimants.

Green MSPs voted with a majority in the Scottish Parliament in October 2017 for the Westminster government to halt the combined benefit payment.

Alison Johnstone MSP, the Scottish Greens’ social security spokesperson, said:

Government pledge on mental health being delivered too slowly, warns Johnstone

Wed 13 Jun, 2018

A government pledge to put in place an extra 800 mental health workers is being delivered too slowly, warned Scottish Greens health spokesperson Alison Johnstone in today’s (13 June) Holyrood debate on mental health.

Alison said:

Why has the Scottish Government parked animal welfare and environmental issues?

Alison Johnstone MSP Fri 8 Jun, 2018

HAPPY World Oceans Day. Well, maybe not happy. The UN says that eight million tonnes of plastic each year ends up in the ocean, wreaking havoc on wildlife and causing £5bn in damage to marine ecosystems each year.

Johnstone challenges health minister over breast cancer treatment drug

Thu 31 May, 2018

Scottish Greens health spokesperson Alison Johnstone MSP today (31 May) challenged Scottish health minister Shona Robison to use government powers to make breast cancer treatment drug Perjeta available on the NHS.

The Scottish Medicines Consortium has repeatedly rejected the drug’s use by the NHS, claiming it is not cost-effective.

However, almost 1,000 breast cancer patients could benefit from this drug every year, some of whom could survive for a further sixteen months

Alison Johnstone MSP said:

Johnstone welcomes funding for councils to research Universal Basic Income

Thu 24 May, 2018

Scottish Greens social security spokesperson Alison Johnstone MSP today (24 May) welcomed the award of £250,000 to 4 Local Authorities to conduct research into Universal Basic Income (UBI), a longstanding Scottish Green Party policy.

The Scottish Government’s Citizens Basic Income Feasibility Studies Fund will award the full amount to a joint bid from Local Authorities in Glasgow, Edinburgh, North Ayrshire and Fife.

Alison Johnstone MSP said:

Financial Boost Awaits Pregnant Women Due To Green Scheme

Mon 14 May, 2018

New research reveals that an anti-poverty scheme championed by Scottish Green MSPs is set to boost the incomes of pregnant women and vulnerable families by over £9 million a year when it is rolled-out across Scotland.

Pedal on Parliament shows need for Safer Streets

Sat 28 Apr, 2018

Scottish Green MSPs say today's (28 Apr) Pedal on Parliament (PoP) events in Edinburgh and Inverness, expected to be attended by thousands of cyclists and walkers, will show the need for safer streets with lower speed limits, and investment in cycling and walking routes to prevent ill-health.

The party's MSPs are due to take part with Mark Ruskell cycling 50 miles from his home in Doune to join Patrick Harvie and Alison Johnstone at the PoP Edinburgh ride. Meanwhile John Finnie will attend the separate PoP ride in Inverness.

Ending disability assessments is the highest priority for Scotland’s new social security system

Alison Johnstone MSP Wed 25 Apr, 2018

There’s no doubt the UK’s social security system makes a mockery of its name. It often undermines people’s security, leaving them dependent on charities to put food on the table, and it does not afford its users the dignity and respect we would hope for in a fair society.

This week, Scotland has a chance to take a different approach. The Scottish Government’s Social Security Bill, covering aspects of newly-devolved powers, is an opportunity to put dignity and respect at heart of how people are treated.

Johnstone to improve Social Security Bill to end disruptive & stressful disability assessments

Mon 23 Apr, 2018

Green MSP Alison Johnstone will this week attempt to improve the Scottish Government’s Social Security Bill to end what she says is “serious disruption and stress to applicants’ lives” from unnecessary assessments for disability benefits.

Ahead of Wednesday’s final vote on the Bill, Alison Johnstone, social security spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, said: