Victims of rape should not face public exposure of their sexual history

Thu 27 Oct, 2016

The Scottish Greens’ Justice spokesperson, John Finnie MSP, has called on the Scottish Government to investigate whether current laws are sufficient to prevent defence lawyers using rape victims’ sexual history against them in court.

 

Introducing a complainant’s sexual history as evidence was, in theory, banned in most cases by the 2002 Sexual  Offences (Procedure and Evidence) Act. But in the first three months of this year, there were 57 applications to use sexual history evidence, of which only 9 were refused. Prosecutors only opposed 6 of the applications.

What's the point of a principle like climate justice, when surrendered so easily?

Thu 27 Oct, 2016

At First Minister's Questions today (27 Oct), Patrick Harvie MSP, Co-convener of the Scottish Greens, condemned Scottish Ministers for surrendering their principles by championing the expansion of Heathrow airport, which will result in hugely increased climate emissions, noise and air pollution, and the destruction of hundreds of homes.

Patrick said:

Greens call for greater preventative health spending

Thu 27 Oct, 2016

An Audit Scotland report, highlighting how the NHS is struggling with rising demand and cost pressures, is proof of the need for more “preventative spending” say the Scottish Greens.

The party’s health spokesperson, Alison Johnstone MSP says the report shows that the government needs to make workforce planning a top priority to help prevent a crisis. The report highlights how most health spending is still focussed on “hospital and other institutional-based care”.

Scotland needs to turn up the volume on CETA

Thu 27 Oct, 2016

Mark Ruskell MSP, Environment spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, will today (27 Oct) use a Holyrood debate on the EU to highlight the risk of fracking companies gaining the upper hand should the Westminster Government continue to back controversial trade deals such as CETA.

The motion for debate calls on the UK Government to ensure that Scotland has a role in decision-making. 

Green MSP calls for guarantees for European NHS staff

Wed 26 Oct, 2016

Post-Brexit guarantees for EU nationals working in NHS Scotland were sought by a Green MSP at Holyrood today.

Ross Greer MSP asked Mike Russell, Minister for UK Negotiations on Scotland's Place in Europe what further work the government is undertaking to provide evidence of the role workers from the rest of the EU have in the NHS and social care services.

Half of Primary One children in deprived communities have tooth decay

Tue 25 Oct, 2016

Alison Johnstone MSP, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (25 Oct) expressed concern at statistics showing that half of Primary One children in deprived communities have tooth decay.

The NHS report concludes that "clear health inequalities persist, and reducing dental health inequality must remain a priority.”

Student Funding: Greer Welcomes Review, Questions Debt

Tue 25 Oct, 2016

Ross Greer MSP, Education spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (25 Oct) welcomed the announcement of a review of student finance as figures show the number of students being paid grants has fallen nearly five per cent in a year as an increasing number are taking out loans.

Ross Greer MSP said:

Enterprise Review: Finnie Welcomes Highland And South Recommendations

Tue 25 Oct, 2016

John Finnie MSP, Rural Communities spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (25 Oct) welcomed the findings of a review into the government's enterprise agencies, which include protecting services in the Highlands and Islands, and creating a new service for the South of Scotland.

Last month Mr Finnie raised with the First Minister concerns about the future of Highlands and Islands Enterprise, and reiterated the Scottish Greens' call for the South of Scotland to have a dedicated development agency.

Heathrow decision does nothing to advance social justice

Tue 25 Oct, 2016

Responding to news that the Westminster Government is backing the expansion of London Heathrow airport, John Finnie MSP, Transport and Rural Economy spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, said:

"It's perhaps no surprise that a Westminster Government gung-ho for fracking and determined to wreck our renewables industry is backing the expansion of the hugely-polluting aviation sector. This will damage the UK's credibility on the global stage where there is firm agreement on the need to reduce climate emissions.

Rural Fuel Poverty: Wightman Urges Action

Mon 24 Oct, 2016

Responding to a new report on rural fuel poverty, Andy Wightman MSP, housing spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, urged Scottish Ministers to "seize the moment" given cross-party consensus on the need for action.

The Action Plan to Deliver Affordable Warmth in Rural Scotland proposed by the Scottish Rural Fuel Poverty Task Force says half of Scotland's rural households are living in fuel poverty, rising to 63% in remote areas. The plan calls for public investment and community empowerment.

Andy Wightman MSP said: