Greens back new help to access council tax support

Fri 3 May, 2019

Scottish Greens are welcoming a new service from Citizens Advice Scotland to help people apply for assistance with paying their Council Tax bills.

The charity has this week launched a new online tool - https://www.checkmycounciltax.scot/- to help people check if they are entitled to reductions, deductions or exemptions.

The number of Scottish households receiving Council Tax Reduction has declined by 78,970 since 2013, prompting concerns that the scheme isn’t well known and that thousands of people could be missing out.

Scottish Government’s air tax cut is “as good as dead”

Fri 3 May, 2019

Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader and Finance Spokesperson Patrick Harvie MSP has predicted that the Scottish Government will be forced to scrap its misguided air tax proposals in the wake of growing acceptance of the climate emergency.

The First Minister was given three opportunities to defend the damaging policy or finally drop it at FMQs on Thursday, notably from Mr Harvie’s colleague Alison Johnstone MSP, but on each occasion Nicola Sturgeon would only say that all Government policies will be reviewed.

FMQs: Urgent action needed in face of emergency

Thu 2 May, 2019

Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader Alison Johnstone MSP has today (2 May) called on the Scottish Government to take urgent action in the face of the climate emergency.

Last year climate scientists warned that we have just a decade to deliver the change needed to avoid a climate catastrophe, and today new guidance was issued to the Scottish Government by the Committee on Climate Change, its statutory advisor.

Ms Johnstone asked the First Minister what action the Scottish Government plan to take in the next year given the urgent nature of the emergency.

Greens: Ambitious climate action required

Thu 2 May, 2019

Scottish Greens Climate Spokesperson Mark Ruskell MSP has called on the Scottish Government to take ambitious action to tackle the climate emergency.

Mr Ruskell’s comments come in the wake of the publication of new advice by the Committee on Climate Change.

Mark Ruskell MSP said:

Finnie: Chief Constable may end in court

Tue 30 Apr, 2019

Scottish Greens Justice Spokesperson and former Scottish Police Federation official John Finnie MSP this afternoon (30 Apr) warned the Cabinet Secretary for Justice that the Chief Constable of Police Scotland could end up in court unless urgent action is taken to improve the state of its police stations.

Mr Finnie raised the matter in the Scottish Parliament in the wake of comments from the Scottish Police Federation that much of the police estate is, “unfit for human habitation”.

Commenting afterwards John Finnie MSP said:

Greens encourage families to apply for new grant

Mon 29 Apr, 2019

Greens are encouraging all eligible families to apply for a new payment available to some families with nursery-age children, opening for applications today.

Families claiming low-income benefits can apply for the new Best Start Grant Early Learning Payment. This provides a one-off payment of £250 to help families with the cost of children aged two to three-and-half attending early years education.

It is the first entirely new social security payment made by the new devolved social security system.

Scottish Greens parliamentary co-leader Alison Johnstone MSP said:

Ex SNP Environment Minister admits “issues” with air tax cuts

Mon 29 Apr, 2019

Former SNP Environment Secretary Stewart Stevenson MSP has admitted that “there are issues,” with the Scottish Government’s proposals on slashing aviation tax. 

Mr Stevenson’s comments were made during a debate on the climate crisis with Green MSP Ross Greer on Good morning Scotland. In response to a question from presenter Gary Robertson about how cutting air taxes could be compatible with declaring a climate emergency, as the First Minister did at her party conference this weekend, Mr Stevenson replied, “I think there are issues around that.”

Greens respond to Climate Emergency declaration

Mon 29 Apr, 2019

Responding to reports that the SNP has performed a dramatic u-turn, declaring a climate emergency, Scottish Greens Climate Spokesperson Mark Ruskell said: 

“Last month SNP MSPs voted against my motion to declare a climate emergency. 

“Following the First Minister’s declaration at her party conference on Sunday, I had hoped that we may be seeing a welcome change of direction rather than just another press release.

For a just and welcoming Scotland in the heart of Europe, vote Green

Maggie Chapman Mon 29 Apr, 2019

In 2014 Scotland had a vote. No, not that one. Before the independence referendum came the European election. It feels like a lifetime ago. And unlike in 2014, next month’s European elections have a much higher profile. In just under a month’s time, Scots will go to the polls to vote for representation in the European Parliament. It is vital that we have voices who can represent the internationalist, welcoming country that Scotland aspires to be.

FMQs: Greens challenge SNP over Indy economic vision

Thu 25 Apr, 2019

Scottish independence must offer the hope of a genuine change of economic direction, instead of mimicking the UK's failed austerity agenda, according to Scottish Greens parliamentary co-leader Patrick Harvie. The Scottish Government backed Green calls for a Green New Deal in Parliament yesterday, and Harvie today challenged Nicola Sturgeon to be more ambitious in following through on this commitment, and to ensure that the independence campaign doesn’t close the door on this agenda.