We all create the wealth of our economy

Patrick Harvie MSP Fri 13 Jan, 2017

The debate about economic inequality took a new turn this week, with coverage of the GINI coefficient, which measures how unequal each country is. Despite the widespread feeling that the gap between rich and poor has kept getting wider, new figures for the UK seem to show no significant change over the last decade or so. It’s worth thinking about what these figures mean.

Greens become first party to back LGBTI education campaign

Thu 12 Jan, 2017

The Scottish Greens have become the first parliamentary party at Holyrood to wholly endorse a campaign for LGBTI inclusive education in Scotland.

All six of the Green MSPs are signed up to the TIE Pledge, a campaign for the requirement that all schools become proactive in tackling homophobia, biphobia and transphobia through an “inclusive educational approach”.

The party’s co-convener, Patrick Harvie MSP said:

Action needed to prevent homelessness caused by UK benefits cap

Thu 12 Jan, 2017

Patrick Harvie MSP, Co-convener of the Scottish Greens, today (12 Jan) used First Minister's Questions to call for action to prevent an increase in poverty and homelessness caused by the Westminster Government's benefits cap.

Mr Harvie highlighted the fact that the Scottish Government does not have accurate data on the problem. It first thought 4,000 households could be affected, yet some estimates have suggested up to 11,000 households could be hit.

Scot Gov must get off the fence and rule out ship-to-ship oil transfers in the Moray Firth

Thu 12 Jan, 2017

The Scottish Government must get off the fence and rule out ship-to-ship oil transfers in the environmentally-sensitive Moray Firth, according to the Scottish Greens who today supported a rally on the issue outside Holyrood.

In January last year, Highland Green MSP John Finnie launched a Save Our Dolphins petition against the Cromarty Firth Port Authority's proposal, gathering almost 4,000 signatures.

A three-year campaign by Green MSPs to halt similar plans in the Firth of Forth ended in victory when Forth Ports dropped their proposal in 2008. 

Green MSP critical of government’s standstill income tax policy

Wed 11 Jan, 2017

The finance secretary has revealed that the Scottish Government’s Income Tax policy remains “under review” after questioning by Patrick Harvie MSP at a meeting of the Finance and Constitution Committee.

However, Derek McKay refused to answer the Green MSP’s questions on “progressive changes to income tax rates and bands”, a position Harvie says will lead to a missed opportunity “to cut poverty and inequality”.

The SNP is now a minority government and therefore needs to win parliamentary support for its tax plans in order to pass a budget next month.

Equity Fund doesn't cover cuts; Education concerns grow

Wed 11 Jan, 2017

Ross Greer MSP, Education spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today challenged Scottish Ministers ahead of the launch of their Pupil Equity Fund.

Today saw the launch of an online attainment resource for teachers, with the Education Secretary claiming that a £120 million fund that will go directly to headteachers will close the attainment gap.

Green MSP quizzes police about unreported wildlife crimes

Tue 10 Jan, 2017

Discrepancies between the numbers of crimes against birds of prey reported by the RSPB and Police Scotland must urgently be explained says a Green MSP.

Mark Ruskell MSP quizzed members of the Wildlife and Environmental Crime Unit today, about why five raptor related crimes were audited by the bird charity but not police, at a meeting of Holyrood’s Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee,

Environment spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, Mark Ruskell MSP said:

Indyref: Harvie urges progress on legislation

Mon 9 Jan, 2017

Patrick Harvie MSP, Co-convener of the Scottish Greens, today (9 Jan) welcomed comments from the First Minister that a referendum on Scottish independence "has to be on the table to make sure Scotland is not driven off a hard Brexit cliff edge".

In an interview with STV, the First Minister says there is not going to be a referendum in 2017 but she restates her support for Scotland remaining in the single market.

Patrick Harvie said:

Energy: Report for Greens shows how to double our power

Mon 9 Jan, 2017

A report for the Scottish Greens published today shows how more low-carbon power could be generated for less money by devolving control over Scottish consumers' electricity bills.

Green MSP calls for fairer funding for GP practices

Fri 6 Jan, 2017

A Green MSP has written to the health secretary urging the government to better target GP practice spending in the most deprived areas and for a robust approach to tackling health inequalities.

Alison Johnstone’s letter to Shona Robison outlines how GP practices in the most deprived areas receive only £3.79 more per patient than those in the least deprived and that a fairer funding model would allow GPs to “have longer consultation with their patients”.

Lothian MSP and Scottish Greens’ health spokesperson, Alison Johnstone said: