Greens should challenge Growth Commission report’s ideas

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 1 Jun, 2018

If the SNP’s Growth Commission was supposed to do anything, it was to provoke debate. Debate is certainly needed about a new proposition for independence, because the one thing every 2014 Yes voter should be able to agree on is that what we don’t need is simply a re-run of an argument that failed to win a majority then, in circumstances which have already changed dramatically. That would be a recipe for a second and perhaps even final defeat.

Invest in jobs, devolve tax powers: Harvie responds to Economic Forecasts & Financial Strategy

Thu 31 May, 2018

Investment in the jobs of the future and devolution of tax powers to local level are ever more vital, according to Scottish Greens co-convener Patrick Harvie MSP.
 
The party's finance and economy spokesperson was responding to Finance Secretary Derek Mackay's inaugural statement on the government's medium-term financial strategy, and the latest forecasts from the Scottish Fiscal Commission which warn of low wage growth in the coming years.
 
Patrick Harvie MSP said:
 

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:

Greens welcome recommendations from hate crime report

Thu 31 May, 2018

New recommendations for updating Scotland’s hate crime legislation have been broadly welcomed by the Scottish Greens.

John Finnie MSP, the party’s justice spokesperson, says the recommendations on transgender identity and age hostility are particularly welcome and will provide a “timely update” in making Scotland a more inclusive nation.

Mr Finnie said:

Scotland's capital denied normal European city status due to Scot Gov inaction, warns Wightman

Thu 31 May, 2018

Scotland's capital is being denied "normal European city" status due to Scottish Government inaction on visitor levies, according to Scottish Greens local government spokesperson Andy Wightman MSP.

Andy used First Minister's Questions today (31 May) to urge the Scottish Government to bring forward legislation to give local councils powers that municipalities in other European countries take for granted.

Minister dodges Green question on indy visas

Tue 29 May, 2018

A recommendation in the SNP’s growth commission report, suggesting that an independent Scotland could centre its immigration policy on selling so-called ‘golden visas’, has been challenged by a Green MSP.

Patrick Harvie, the Greens’ finance spokesperson, pressed the SNP’s Derek Mackay today at Holyrood to distance himself from the proposal to sell visas to super-rich migrants and instead choose an “open and welcoming approach”.

Serious changes are needed to the Planning Bill if it is to avoid defeat, warns Wightman

Tue 29 May, 2018

Serious changes are needed to the government's proposed Planning Bill if it is to avoid defeat, according to Scottish Greens housing spokesperson Andy Wightman MSP.
 
Speaking in this afternoon's Stage One debate on the Bill at Holyrood, in which all opposition parties expressed concerns, Andy said:
 

Finnie Challenges Minister Over Ferry Contract

Tue 29 May, 2018

Scottish Greens transport spokesperson John Finnie MSP today (29 May) challenged Scottish Ministers to overhaul their "opportunistic" attitude toward ferry services between Orkney, Shetland and the Scottish mainland.

Mr Finnie, a Highlands and Islands MSP, has written to Transport Minister Humza Yousaf following last week's announcement from the Scottish Government that it will put the Northern Isles ferry services out to commercial tender, rather than bringing them into the public sector.

This is no time to rein in our ambitions on tackling climate change

Mark Ruskell MSP Tue 29 May, 2018

Warm, cheap-to-heat housing, affordable trains and convenient local bus services, and good food with minimal waste – everyone’s lives could be so much better if we seize the opportunity presented by Scotland’s new climate change laws.

Who owns Scotland? It’s time to end the secrecy and the costs

Andy Wightman MSP Sat 26 May, 2018

Over the past two years I have been involved in a number of cases raised by constituents that involve trying to find out who owns land and property. Cases range from a business trying to expand, residents trying to secure common repairs and constituents living in tenements with growing numbers of short-term lets. In each such case, folk want to find out easily, speedily and affordably who owns land or property that has a direct impact on their lives. All too often, however, they can’t do so. One constituent was told it would cost her £150 to find out who owned five flats in her stair.