8 things the Green budget means 

Patrick Harvie MSP Wed 31 Jan, 2018

It's Scottish Budget day. Here's 8 things the Green budget deal means:

We should be empowering our communities to tackle their transport needs

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 26 Jan, 2018

In the early days of devolution there was excitement about Scotland being able to get to work on issues which had been sidelined or ignored by successive UK Governments. Transport was one area where new energy and momentum were sorely needed.

With a real fox-hunting ban we can demonstrate that Scotland really does care about the welfare of animals

Alison Johnstone MSP Mon 22 Jan, 2018

Foxes are being hunted by dogs in Scotland and it’s clear that existing laws are unable to stop it. 

I’ve seen the sickening evidence. Investigators for the League Against Cruel sports have filmed harrowing footage showing that mounted hunts are still using hounds to run down and tear apart foxes in the same way they did when the Scottish Parliament passed laws intended to ban hunting with dogs in 2002.

Our polluted air costs us both personally and as a society

Alison Johnstone MSP Fri 19 Jan, 2018

Air pollution is a true invisible killer. We take the air around us for granted, but just as fish depend on clean water, clean air is obviously vital for our health and the health of our wider environment. 

Back in the 1950s, smog was all too visible, and the deaths from it were front page news. The notorious Great Smog of London, even though it lasted just five days, is now believed to have killed as many as 12,000 people, and it led to the 1956 Clean Air Act.

Trans rights are human rights, and we must stand together to achieve them

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 19 Jan, 2018

Most days, MSPs reply to quite a number of letters and emails from our constituents. Sometimes the reply can offer some practical help, and at other times that’s just not possible. Sometimes the correspondence is about a fundamental difference of political opinion, and of course people have a right to question their representatives about such issues.

New York’s bold and urgent action has shown we must think bigger than cotton buds and plastic straws

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 12 Jan, 2018

Frank Sinatra told us that it’s the city that doesn’t sleep, and this week New York’s Mayor Bill de Blasio proved that he’s not lying down on the job when it comes to the world’s greatest environmental challenge either.

Holyrood is given the opportunity to reform the planning system once a decade, let's take it

Andy Wightman MSP Fri 5 Jan, 2018

On the Thursday before Christmas, Scottish ministers issued a decision letter approving the construction of a film studio and power station at Damhead in the greenbelt to the south of Edinburgh. In a brilliant circular argument, the development was deemed to be of national importance by ministers, thus justifying its incorporation into the local development plan which was then used by ministers to justify their decision.

Let's create a modern set of minimum labour standards to protect Scottish workers from exploitation

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 29 Dec, 2017

It will be a happier new year than expected for some of the people working through the chilly night forecast on the 31st. Edinburgh’s annual Hogmanay celebration is one of the events that gives Scotland’s capital a global prominence, with visitors and locals joining together to see in the new year. But after budget cuts from the local council, the commercial organisers of the event decided to recruit volunteers to take on what had previously been paid roles, as ‘Hogmanay Ambassadors’.

Young people across Scotland can claim 2018 for themselves

Ross Greer MSP Fri 22 Dec, 2017

I love Christmas. In the cheesiest, most clichéd way it’s my favourite time of the year. Yes, the capitalist pressure to prove how much you love someone by spending more and more money you don’t have on more and more gifts isn’t great but spending time with family, at church and just doing absolutely nothing are the highlight of my year.

Our councils deliver critically important services and the decision not to provide a real terms increase to their funding must be challenged

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 15 Dec, 2017

Derek Mackay has one of the most challenging jobs in politics. He has to construct a budget which not only balances the books, but defends against Tory austerity and meets rising demand for public services. He has to respond to the competing demands for investment in the future and also to the different views across a parliament of minorities.

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