Thursday 19 December 2019
This has been another eventful year with many highs and lows. Politically Brexit has again dominated and we returned to the ballot box. The contrast in the results were staggering and a stark reminder that Scotland and our electorate want to take a different path.
However, Christmas is time for coming together with family and friends and with the New Year comes renewed hope for the future making our own lives and the lives of others better. Let’s hope we can all grow in confidence, and fulfil aspirations for ourselves, our families and our country. I am certain that Scotland’s cause will progress.
I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year.
Right to Choose
The democratic case for Scotland having the ability to choose its own constitutional future has been published today – entitled “Scotland’s Right to Choose: Putting Scotland’s Future in Scotland’s Hands”
The paper lays out the detailed case for how and why the country should be able to have the choice of independence in a referendum.
The document includes a specific call on the UK Government to “enter discussions about the Scottish Government’s mandate for giving the people of Scotland a choice, and to agree legislation with the Scottish Government that would put beyond doubt the Scottish Parliament’s right to legislate for a referendum on independence.”
You can read the document in full here: https://www.gov.scot/publications/scotlands-right-choose-putting-scotlands-future-scotlands-hands/
A ban on ticket touting for Euro 2020 matches has been passed unanimously by the Scottish Parliament this week.
Under the UEFA European Championship (Scotland) Bill anyone caught reselling tickets will face a fine of up to £5,000.
Glasgow is one of 12 host cities, and is expected to welcome an estimated 200,000 fans during the championship.
The Bill will ensure Scots law complies with UEFA’s requirements for hosting matches. To allow for a positive fan experience, it will also provide for three event zones during the tournament – at Hampden Park, George Square and the Merchant City – where restrictions on street trading and advertising will apply.
Help to Buy
Applications are open for a new national pilot scheme helping first-time buyers with the deposit for a new home.
The Scottish Government’s First Home Fund will make the housing market fairer by providing a total of £150 million until March 2021 to help at least 6,000 people to buy their first home.
More information can be found at: https://www.gov.scot/policies/homeowners/first-home-fund/
Puppies in the Parliament
The SSPCA and my colleague Emma Harper MSP have been spearheading the Say No To The Illegal Puppy Trade.
We had a visit from 3 beautiful puppies in Parliament this week to highlight the campaign. It was also an opportunity to remind people who maybe buying a dog for Christmas to think long and hard about the responsibility dog ownership brings and to ensure they are purchasing from a reputable breeder!
Too many dogs are suffering at the hands of cruel profit driven people and we all have a collective responsibility to stamp this trade out.
PLEASE NOTE THE EBRIEF WILL RESUME WEEK BEGINNING 6 JANUARY 2020