Action needed to make towns and cities healthier

Tue 28 Apr, 2020

The Transport Secretary Michael Matheson must lay out how he will take make Scotland’s towns and cities healthier when he delivers a statement to parliament this afternoon, claimed Scottish Greens Transport Spokesperson John Finnie MSP.

The Highlands and Islands MSP highlighted the huge increase in walking and cycling being seen during the current lockdown and called on Mr Matheson to work with local authorities to immediately introduce temporary widening of pavements and the installation of temporary segregated cycle ways to make these healthier forms of travel safe and easy.

Big four supermarkets rated for coronavirus response

Mon 27 Apr, 2020

The Scottish Greens have rated the top four supermarkets for their response to the coronavirus crisis, with all four showing room for improvement.

Analysis from the Greens has marked the supermarkets on three essential factors needed to ensure a just food supply during the pandemic. These are:

•             Supporting the supply chain to ensure producers can keep supplying food

Scottish Greens respond to FM testing comments

Mon 27 Apr, 2020

Responding to the First Minister’s comments at this afternoon’s Scottish Government daily briefing that, “we don’t know really for sure how reliable the testing is when people don’t have symptoms,” and comments from the Health Secretary that, “the key is to make sure that access to that testing is smooth and straightforward and with a purpose,” Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader Alison Johnstone said:

First Minister must explain how testing capacity will be used

Sun 26 Apr, 2020

Responding to comments by the First Minister on The Andrew Marr Show this morning that, “the challenge now is to make sure that [testing] capacity is being fully utilised,” Scottish Greens Co-Leader Patrick Harvie MSP said:

“Scottish Greens have been calling on the Scottish Government to explain exactly how it will fully utilise its testing capacity for some time now.

Scottish Greens call for routine health and care testing

Sat 25 Apr, 2020

Scottish Greens have today published a proposal calling for hospital and care workers who are on the frontline of the Covid-19 pandemic to be given routine tests regardless of whether they are showing symptoms.

Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader Alison Johnstone MSP explained that the proposal would address concerns that infected health and care workers who are pre-symptomatic, asymptomatic or suffering mild symptoms may be spreading Covid-19 to patients and others.

Action needed to protect clean air say Greens

Fri 24 Apr, 2020

Action is needed from the Scottish Government to prevent a surge in air pollution when lockdown is lifted, said Scottish Greens Environment Spokesperson Mark Ruskell MSP this afternoon.

Speaking at a virtual questions session Mr Ruskell highlighted the huge improvement in air quality in towns and cities since emergency measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus were introduced, warning that access to clean air is vital as the lockdown is lifted.

Mark Ruskell MSP said:

More detail needed from Scottish Govt on testing framework

Thu 23 Apr, 2020

The Scottish Government’s framework for tackling the Covid19 crisis will require further commitments to utilise Scotland’s testing capacity, the Scottish Greens have said.

Greens call for government to cover nursing fees

Thu 23 Apr, 2020

The Scottish Greens have called on the Scottish Government to demonstrate its appreciation for Scotland’s nurses by covering their 2020 professional registration fees.

Nurses and midwives in Scotland are required to pay an annual registration fee of £120 to the Nursing and Midwifery Council, but Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader Alison Johnstone MSP has called on the First Minister to cover that cost this year as a small token of appreciation for the role these professionals are playing in the fight against coronavirus.

Alison Johnstone MSP said:

FM must use daily briefing to outline testing strategy

Wed 22 Apr, 2020

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon should use her daily coronavirus strategy to outline the Scottish Government’s testing strategy, the Scottish Greens have said.

At yesterday’s First Minister’s Questions, Sturgeon conceded to Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie that Scotland was not using its full testing capacity. This follows repeated warnings by experts and the World Health Organisation that testing, tracing contacts and isolating positive cases is fundamental to beating the virus.

Coronavirus Crisis: time for Basic Income in Scotland?

Gavin Corbett Wed 22 Apr, 2020

A couple of years ago I wrote about how the idea of a Citizens Basic Income (CBI) had become fashionable after decades on the fringes.  As part of that new interest, in 2017, Green MSPs secured a funding commitment from the Scottish Government to carry out a feasibility exercise into how a CBI could be trialled in Scotland.  As a councillor in one of the 4 councils (Edinburgh) involved in the feasibility exercise I have been on the sounding board for the work, along with my fellow Green cou