Safer streets: MSP says 20mph limit will save hearts and lungs

5 March, 2017 - 10:02

Scottish Green MSP Mark Ruskell today said statistics showing the prevalence of heart and lung disease in different parts of Scotland underline the need to cut traffic pollution by reducing the urban speed limit from 30 to 20 mph.

NHS Database: Harvie Welcomes Government Climbdown

3 March, 2017 - 17:40

Scottish Green MSPs today (3 March) welcomed confirmation from the Scottish Government that plans to open up the NHS Central Register to other public bodies have been dropped.

Green MSPs had warned that data security, privacy and civil liberties were at serious risk and had challenged Scottish Ministers over the proposal.

Patrick Harvie MSP, Scottish Greens co-convener, said:

“Allowing wider public sector access to data from the NHS central register sounded like an ID database in all but name. It's good to see the Scottish Government backing down.

We need to ensure that every child gets the right support at school

Ross Greer MSP Fri 3 Mar

The sign of a strong education system is one where every pupil gets the right support. Good education meets each young person's needs and not just those of the class as a whole. On Wednesday, Holyrood’s Education and Skills Committee held a roundtable discussion on pupils with Additional Support Needs and what we heard left us in no doubt – Scotland is not giving every pupil the support they need and deserve.

Greens push First Minister to improve Additional Support Needs provision in schools

2 March, 2017 - 15:47

The dire state of Assistant Support Needs in Scotland’s schools was raised at First Minister’s Questions today, with Patrick Harvie MSP highlighting that there has been a one in seven reduction in ASN teachers and a drop of one in ten ASN assistants.

The Green co-convener also raised how a member of teaching staff in a school in Glasgow had reported being told to watch TV sitcom the Big Bang Theory to gain an understanding of supporting children with Asperger syndrome.

We can use forthcoming legislation to ensure social security payments keep pace with inflation

2 March, 2017 - 14:22

Alison Johnstone MSP, Social Security spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (2 March) welcomed comments by Social Security minister Jeane Freeman that she would consider using the forthcoming Social Security Bill to ensure payments keep pace with inflation.

At today's meeting of Holyrood's Social Security committee, Alison pointed out that the UK Government has frozen the rates of some benefits in recent years. Child Benefit, for example, will lose 28 per cent of its value by 2020.

Concerns as EDF allowed more cracking within Hunterston's reactor

2 March, 2017 - 14:14

Ross Greer, Scottish Green MSP for West of Scotland, today (2 March) criticised the UK's Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) for giving the green light to increased cracking in the reactor of the Hunterston B nuclear power station in Ayrshire.

The ONR says the Periodic Safety Review for Hunterston by operators EDF is adequate. It allows for a doubling in the amount of cracked graphite bricks, which safety experts have warned could lead to nuclear fuel overheating, potentially resulting in a radiological release.

Additional Support Needs failing thousands of young people says Green MSP

1 March, 2017 - 13:42

The dire state of Additional Support Needs in Scotland’s schools was laid bare at Holyrood’s education committee today, with a Green MSP saying the system is “failing thousands of young people”.

One ASN expert from Glasgow City Council stated that a member of staff had reported being told to watch TV sitcom the Big Bang Theory to gain an understanding of supporting children with Asperger syndrome.

David Davis snub is disrespectful says green MSP

1 March, 2017 - 10:44

A newspaper report that UK government Brexit ministers are refusing to appear before the Scottish Parliament’s Europe committee before Article 50 is triggered is another example of “Tory disrespect” says a Green MSP.

Lack of progress in sourcing Scottish for school meals

1 March, 2017 - 10:25

Alison Johnstone MSP, Health, Children & Young People spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (1 March) expressed disappointment at the lack of progress in sourcing Scottish chicken for school meals.

Freedom of Information requests by Alison three years ago revealed the extent of the problem, with many councils flying in chicken nuggets from Thailand.

Fresh FOI requests by the BBC show councils spent £1.3m on chicken products from Thailand last year.

Alison Johnstone, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens and MSP for Lothian, said:

Bold measures to tackle poverty can end a national disgrace

Alison Johnstone MSP Wed 1 Mar

The past few days have been a calamity for Labour. At their Scottish conference the London Mayor compared independence with racism, their only Scottish MP bizarrely claimed there is no mandate for a fresh referendum on independence, and their UK leader said we must get on with Brexit despite Scotland voting to Remain.

But amid all that, one small piece of logic did emerge.