Deeply concerning NHS 24 IT system so late & over budget

Thu 6 Oct, 2016

Alison Johnstone MSP, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (6 Oct) highlighted a report by the Auditor General into IT problems at NHS 24.

The health board's failure to launch its new IT system successfully means its cost will be £131.2 million - 73 per cent higher than the original business case. The Auditor General says "there's no quick fix available."

Research underlines need for Scotland to be heard in Brexit negotiations

Thu 6 Oct, 2016

Ross Greer MSP, Europe & External Affairs spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (6 Oct) highlighted warnings from a leading economic institute that Brexit could result in Scottish wages being up to seven per cent lower, meaning a loss of up to £2,000 a year for someone on average earnings.

Green warning ahead of decision on Underground Coal Gasification

Thu 6 Oct, 2016

Anything less than an outright ban on burning coal for gas in Scotland’s seabeds will be deemed an environmental “failure” say the Scottish Greens.

A statement is expected at Holyrood today revealing the outcome of the “Review of Underground Coal Gasification”. Green MSPs are hoping that the Scottish Government follows the lead of the Australian state of Queensland in banning UCG.

Alison welcomes Parliament vote to prevent devolved benefit sanctions

Wed 5 Oct, 2016

Alison Johnstone MSP, Social Security spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, tonight (5 Oct) welcomed the vote in Parliament signalling that when employment programmes for people with health conditions, disabled people and those at risk of long-term unemployment are devolved next year no benefit sanctions will be applied.

In August, the Green MSPs published research showing that unless the Scottish Government changed its approach, 13,000 Scots a year would face sanctions worth a total of around £7m.

2,500 people signed the Greens' Scotland Against Sanctions petition.

Rural Economy Secretary needs to give certainty over SRDP schemes

Wed 5 Oct, 2016

Mark Ruskell MSP, Food & Farming spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today urged Scottish Ministers to end the uncertainty facing farmers who carry out environmentally-sustainable practices.

In light of a statement from the UK Chancellor guaranteeing post-Brexit support for structural funds such as Agri-Environment & Scottish Rural Development Programme (SRDP) funds, Mr Ruskell today asked Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing to explain when he would give details about these payments but Mr Ewing insisted that he couldn't.

Andy pledges to keep up the campaign to scrap the discredited Council Tax

Wed 5 Oct, 2016

Andy Wightman MSP, Local Government spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (5 Oct) pledged to keep up the campaign to scrap the discredited Council Tax following today's attempt to put on record concerns surrounding the Scottish Government's "timid" changes.

At Holyrood's Local Government committee, Finance Secretary Derek Mackay tabled a motion recommending that Parliament agrees to increase the upper bands of Council Tax. Mr Wightman put forward an amendment, noting:

Reviving tail docking is a bizarre priority

Wed 5 Oct, 2016

Mark Ruskell MSP, Environment spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (5 Oct) expressed disappointment in Scottish Government plans to regulate rather than ban electric shock collars for dogs, and allow tail docking.

We must resist the Tories' toxic politics

Wed 5 Oct, 2016

Patrick Harvie MSP, Co-convener of the Scottish Greens, has today (5 Oct) joined forces with the leaders of the Green Parties of England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the SNP and Plaid Cymru to call for progressive parties to work together to resist the Tories' toxic politics.

The leaders have released a statement ahead of Theresa May’s first major conference speech as Conservative Party leader. The statement was drawn up this morning between the parties as a response to increasingly hostile rhetoric from the Conservative Party Conference.

Finance Secretary unclear about budget choices; public services at stake

Tue 4 Oct, 2016

Patrick Harvie MSP, Finance & Economy spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (4 Oct) expressed disappointment at the ambiguous stance taken by Finance Secretary Derek Mackay over the restrictions to scrutiny of the 2017/18 Scottish Budget.

A majority of MSPs signed a motion by Patrick, noting that the Finance Committee believe the current timing of budget information is unacceptable and calling for scenario plans to be presented by 21 October.

Government pressed by Greens to deal with Clair oil spill

Tue 4 Oct, 2016

Strategies for dealing with oil leaks were raised at Holyrood today with a Green MSP seeking assurances on the proposed future practice of ship-to-ship oil transfers.