Ruskell criticises Scot Gov "woeful" investment as progress report shows increase in air pollution zones

15 June, 2017 - 12:05

Mark Ruskell MSP, Environment spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (15 June) criticised the Scottish Government's "woeful" investment in walking and cycling as a progress report on its air pollution strategy shows an increase in air pollution zones.

Four new air quality management areas were declared last year, bringing the total across Scotland to 38.

Ross Greer blast arms dealer lessons in schools

14 June, 2017 - 16:13

The Scottish Greens have slammed government ministers for their failure to condemn a ‘Dragon’s Den’ lesson plan putting children in the role of arms dealers.

After questioning by Green MSP during portfolio questions, education secretary John Swinney said that it is up to teachers to “determine the appropriateness” of external organisations visiting schools, including representatives from the defence industry.

Other opposition parties at Holyrood ignoring need for sustainable jobs

14 June, 2017 - 15:08

Patrick Harvie MSP, Economy spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (14 June) accused the other opposition parties at Holyrood of ignoring the need to invest in sustainable jobs, as they attempted to turn a debate on the economy into one on the constitution.

The Green amendment to the government's motion highlighted the Scottish economy's over-dependence on oil and gas, the need for well-paid work in low-carbon industries and redistribution of wealth.

The other opposition parties' amendments talked about independence.

Patrick Harvie MSP said:

Finnie welcomes decision of chair of Scotland's police watchdog to stand down

14 June, 2017 - 13:57

John Finnie MSP, Justice spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (14 June) welcomed the decision of the chair of Scotland's police watchdog to stand down from the role.

Andrew Flanagan is resigning from the Scottish Police Authority amid concerns over his conduct and the transparency and governance of the organisation.

John Finnie MSP said:

“Andrew Flanagan has made the right decision, albeit at the wrong time.

Finnie urges investment in cycling infrastructure as figures show rise in road deaths

14 June, 2017 - 13:53

John Finnie MSP, Transport spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (14 June) urged investment in cycling infrastructure in light of figures showing a rise in road deaths, including a rise in cycling fatalities.

In 2016 there were 191 fatalities, fourteen per cent more than in 2015, and 8 cycling fatalities, three more than in 2015.

John Finnie MSP said:

Default 20 mph speed limit in residential streets and better public transport can help tackle the public health crisis that is air pollution

14 June, 2017 - 10:05

A default 20 mph speed limit in residential streets and better public transport can help tackle the public health crisis that is air pollution, according to Mark Ruskell MSP, Environment spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, who will today (14 June) lead a debate at Holyrood on National Clean Air Day.

'Teachers are already considering going on strike and rising inflation will only make the situation worse'

13 June, 2017 - 16:23

The prospect of teachers supporting industrial action was discussed at Holyrood today when a Green MSP questioned the Scottish Government’s lack of action on improving teacher salaries.

Ross Greer MSP questioned the education secretary about the freeze on teacher salaries in the wake of the EIS union voting to launch a campaign that could include strike action in response to real terms cuts in salaries over the last decade.

In response, Education Secretary John Swinney acknowledged that it was “difficult to support” the public sector pay freeze.

Greens say policy change needed to stop emissions rise

13 June, 2017 - 16:19

Greenhouse gas emissions will continue to rise under the SNP if the party continues with its plans to cut Air Passenger Duty say the Scottish Greens.

The Greens called into question the Scottish Government policy after new figures published today revealed that transport has overtaken energy as Scotland’s most polluting sector.

Ruskell, a Mid Scotland and Fife MSP, said:

Ruskell hits out at SNP and Tory MSPs for supporting a return to amputating puppies' tails

13 June, 2017 - 14:07

Mark Ruskell MSP, Environment spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (13 June) hit out at SNP and Tory MSPs for supporting a return to amputating puppies' tails.

The Scottish Government brought its proposed relaxation of a ten-year ban on tail docking in working dogs to today's Environment Committee at Holyrood.

SNP and Tory MSPs voted in support of the move, with Green MSP Mark Ruskell and two Labour MSPs opposing it.

Mark Ruskell said:

Holyrood now has the power to begin to build a fairer system of helping disabled people

Alison Johnstone MSP Fri 9 Jun

Brexit and independence dominated the General Election campaign. Brexit deservedly so as it poses a huge risk to our social and environmental protections, our economy and public services, while the independence obsession of the pro-UK parties diverted attention from the Tories’ track record in office.
 
In particular, I’m disappointed there wasn’t more scrutiny of Westminster’s welfare reforms which have had a hugely negative impact on disabled people.