At the end of the second full year of the covid pandemic it’s only natural to reflect on what’s just happened, remember those who are no longer with us and give thanks for all those working hard to keep us safe.
But it’s also been a fascinating year for the Scottish Green Party. In May’s election we secured our biggest ever vote and subsequently entered government for the first time. Since then Lorna Slater and I have been working hard to implement our cooperation agreement which has as its core objective building a fairer, greener Scotland.
Scotland also hosted the world when COP26 came to Glasgow, and while it didn’t result in the kind of transformational action that is urgently required to tackle the climate crisis, there is no doubt that understanding of the issue has never been higher, and people are impatient for action.
It’s also the time to look forward to what’s to come, to life beyond the pandemic, to meeting up with friends and family once again and celebrating all the little things that we’ve missed in recent times.
On the political front Greens will look to build on the early foundations we’ve laid in government and deliver more for the people of Scotland; tackling poverty and the climate crisis as we commit to build a fair and green recovery from the pandemic.
The post-Christmas period is often a time when many households struggle, and I know that practical measures we’re introducing in the coming months like the introduction of free bus travel for young people and the doubling of the Scottish Child Payment will make a real difference to family finances.
In uncertain times we can never be sure what’s around the corner. But, whatever comes our way I’m sure that the dedication and kindness that so many have demonstrated to keep us going through the pandemic will come to the fore again in 2022.
I thank everyone for their perseverance in the face of the pandemic and everything that has come along with it.
Happy Hogmanay! And here’s to a better, and brighter, 2022.