Greens back call for double lock on child payments

Thu 23 Jan, 2020

Scottish Greens today have backed calls from the new benefits system watchdog for the value of new child payments to be ‘double locked.’

The £10 payment for low-income families will launch this year, beginning with under 6s.

But concerns have been raised by the Scottish Commission for Social Security that the impact of the payment on poverty will be weakened unless the Scottish Government guarantees the payment will be annually uprated by the higher of rising prices or rising average incomes.

SQA move quickly on human rights checks after Green concerns

Thu 23 Jan, 2020

Scotland’s exams body has moved quickly to clean up its overseas business after pressure from the Scottish Greens, it has emerged.

At the Scottish Parliament’s Education and Skills Committee, the SQA confirmed a new system of human rights checks and appraisals would be in place from April. [1]

This comes after Scottish Green MSP Ross Greer repeatedly raised the agency’s relationship with government departments in Saudi Arabia.

Greens reveal increase in ScotRail skipping stops

Wed 22 Jan, 2020

Seven ScotRail trains on average skipped stations in Scotland every day in 2019, according to figures obtained by Scottish Greens Transport Spokesperson John Finnie MSP. The data shows that 2,660 ScotRail trains skipped stations in 2019, an increase of more than 500 on the previous year.

John Finnie MSP said:

SNIB denied climate focus

Wed 22 Jan, 2020

Scottish Green attempts to focus the Scottish National Investment Bank on tackling the climate emergency have been defeated by the SNP and Tories.

In establishing the bank in law, MSPs voted down amendments from Andy Wightman MSP to put climate commitments on the face of the bill.

Another amendment to give councils a say in the banks governance was also defeated by SNP and Conservative MSPs.

Government must act now on grouse moors after review failure

Tue 21 Jan, 2020

Ministers must act after a two-year review into grouse moors in Scotland failed to agree on the key issue it was tasked with considering, the Scottish Greens have said.

In a meeting of the Scottish Parliament’s Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee, Professor Alan Werrity and other members of his review said a lack of inventory of grouse moors means it is impossible to know how much damage they are causing.

“We don’t know what is happening where,” Professor Werrity admitted to MSPs.

Urgency required on Infrastructure Commission for Scotland recommendations

Mon 20 Jan, 2020

The Scottish Government must act with urgency on the recommendations of the Infrastructure Commission for Scotland, the Scottish Greens have said.

Commenting on the report, Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie said: “The commission seems to be willing to challenge the big differences between the Scottish Government’s rhetoric and action on the climate emergency. These include low carbon heating for our homes and buildings, and transport where emissions are rising and the active travel target has been missed by a mile.

Greens celebrate first Young Carer Grants

Mon 20 Jan, 2020

Scottish Greens today welcomed the payment of around £67,000 in grants to young carers.

In the first five weeks of the new scheme, £66,900 was paid to 325 young carers.

Scotrail service failures show need to put passengers first

Sat 18 Jan, 2020

Figures obtained by the Scottish Greens Transport Spokesperson John Finnie MSP show that Scotrail faced penalties of over £3.3 million in 2019, after almost 5000 service fails were recorded across stations and rolling stock. 



The data from the Service Quality Incentive Regime (SQUIRE) is gathered by Transport Scotland’s inspectors who audit all 355 ScotRail Stations and a minimum of 190-210 trains at least once every four weekly cycle.



John Finnie MSP said:



Scotland climate targets 'cheap', warns CCC

Fri 17 Jan, 2020

Committee for Climate Change chief executive Chris Stark called Scotland’s net zero targets “cheap” in a radio interview this morning.

The top adviser said Scotland was not on track to meet the targets set out in the Climate Bill because not enough was being done by government to reduce emissions from transport and heating.

In November, Stark warned Scottish Government actions on agriculture were ‘half-baked’, but Fergus Ewing said he’d ‘take no lessons’. 

Asylum seekers must be included in voting franchise

Thu 16 Jan, 2020

Administrative complexities often experienced by asylum seekers must not be an excuse to exclude them from democracy, the Scottish Greens have said.

While moves to give refugees a greater say in Scotland’s future win have been welcomed by campaigners, Scottish Green proposals to also give asylum seekers the vote, stand for election and hold office were frustrated as the Scottish Elections Bill passed Stage 2 at Holyrood’s Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee.