Thursday 14 June 2018
On Monday the Minister for Transport Humza Yousaf MSP launched the new Transport Bill at Buchanan Street Bus Station.
I was delighted to attend and hear the Minister outline the measures within the new proposed legislation and in particular an issue I have been campaigning on for many years responsible parking!
The Bill will introduce a national ban on pavement and double parking to make it easier for local authorities to ensure our pavements and roads safer and more accessible to all.
Key provisions include:
Providing local authorities with powers to enforce the national ban
The ability for local authorities to promote exemptions from the national ban, but they will be required to meet strict criteria
The Bill provides exceptions to certain vehicles if they are involved in emergencies or delivering goods
Detailed standards and guidance will be produced for local authorities to deliver a consistent approach in how they enforce the new parking restrictions
Providing local authorities with powers to share services with other councils to enforce the new restrictions
Requiring local authorities to keep accounts in relation to the money they receive from the enforcement of the new restrictions
You can access the details of the Bill here: http://www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/Bills/108683.aspx
This week in Parliament I sponsored an exhibition of information from The Scotland Development Project of Child Bereavement UK.
The Project work’s in partnership with local education, health and social care services, bereavement services and other voluntary organisations within each locality, and has set up advisory groups / networks in each area, with representation from all agencies. Their aim is to ensure coordination of support and to develop clear pathways for children and families.
They offer bereavement awareness training for individuals and organisations, seminars for the children’s workforce as well as information on publications and resources to support families and schools.
They have also been involved in supporting the development of a new West of Scotland Guideline for Neonatal Death and End of Life Care. You can find out more about the new guideline and the project at https://childbereavementuk.org/about-us/scotland-development-project/
Over £21 million is to be invested in improving the financial support available to students at university and college.
As part of a package of measures, the bursary for care-experienced students in further and higher education will be increased this year to £8,100, bringing the support available in line with the Scottish living wage at a cost of around £5.5 million
£16 million will be invested next year in increasing college bursaries and university grants for students from the lowest income families and expand access to them, and the repayment threshold for student loans will be raised to £25,000 from April 2021, and this year the maximum repayment period for student loans will be lowered from 35 to 30 years.
With Elder Abuse World Awareness Day on Friday 15 June this year and as Convener of the CPG on Older People, Age and Ageing in the Scottish Parliament I was more than happy to host an event with Action on Elder Abuse in Parliament this week to raise awareness.
On 15th June each year people come together to send out a clear message – that the abuse of older people will not be tolerated. We want an end to the assault, neglect, abuse and intimidation of our older generation.
The message resonates right around the world and does make a difference! Please sign the pledge at https://www.elderabuse.org.uk/forms/i-pledge
Scotland will move to a soft opt out system for organ and tissue donation, under legislation introduced to the Scottish Parliament.
The Human Tissue (Authorisation) (Scotland) Bill will change organ and tissue donation from the current ‘opt in’ system to an ‘opt out’ system. Under the proposed system, if someone has not stated a decision about donation, they may be deemed as having authorised it.
The Bill contains safeguards to ensure people’s wishes regarding donation are followed and that families will be asked about their loved one’s views to ensure donations don’t occur where the person would not have wished it.
The move to an opt out system received 82% support from respondents in a public consultation in 2017. It will add to measures that have contributed towards improvements in organ donation over the last decade in Scotland, which has seen an 89% increase in the number of deceased organ donors and a 78% increase in organ transplants.
Great news this week with Glasgow City Council announcing mandatory CPR lessons for all secondary pupils across the city. You can view the motion I lodged in Parliament this week highlighting the decision and seeking support for other local authorities to follow suit here : http://www.parliament.scot/parliamentarybusiness/28877.aspx?SearchType=Advance&ReferenceNumbers=S5M-12733&ResultsPerPage=10
It was a pleasure to attend the re-opening of the Mackintosh Willow Tea Rooms on Sauchiehall Street on this the 150th anniversary year celebrating Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s birthday.
Now that the renovations are almost complete the interiors are absolutely stunning showcasing the wonderful designs and distinct style of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
As you can see from the photograph attention to detail has certainly not been overlooked with this Mackintosh design inspired chair complimenting the rest of the interiors.
As well as beautiful surroundings the Tea Room also offers an array of food and drinks. We were treated to a delicious afternoon tea of sandwiches, cakes and scones with optional glass of fizz!
I would have no hesitation in recommending a trip to these beautiful tearooms which pays homage to one of Scotland’s most famous designers and hopefully there will soon be the addition of an interactive visitor/exhibition centre, education and learning suite.