“UK budget falls short for Scotland” – Sandra White MSP

Glasgow Kelvin SNP Sandra White says UK Government financial plans are a bad deal for Scotland.

The Chancellor’s Statement reports increased funding for Scotland amid a consequential real terms cut to Scotland’s revenue block grant of over £200m next year, whilst Scotland’s share of increases in NHS funding are a fraction due to UK cuts elsewhere.

£1.1bn, half of additional funding announced for Scotland, are financial transactions which the Scottish Government cannot spend on frontline public services, and which have to be repaid to the Treasury.

 

Sandra White MSP for Glasgow Kelvin said:

“This budget once again shows that the Tories cannot be trusted to act for Scotland’s interest.

“Whilst they are claiming a funding boost for Scotland, the reality is that a majority of it takes the form of restrictive loans which cannot be spent on public services facing UK cuts.

“I am pleased that the Scottish Government will press ahead with lifting the public sector pay cap despite the UK’s budget failing to do so.

“This was a spin budget today from a Chancellor only able to deliver the axe to Scotland because of his dodgy £1bn DUP bribe holding him in power; we will continue to fight and deliver for Scotland’s interest.”

Sandra White MSP welcomes Supreme Court Minimum Price Ruling

SNP MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, Sandra White has welcomed the UK Supreme Court’s ruling that the Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing policy is legal, allowing the legislation to proceed as part of efforts to improve Scotland’s damaging relationship with alcohol.

The policy was passed by the Scottish Parliament in 2012, but has been delayed due to a long-running legal challenge. Today’s ruling allows it to go ahead, setting a minimum unit price on alcohol of 50 pence.

Minimum unit pricing is backed by academic research, which suggests that the policy will cut alcohol-related deaths and reduce hospital admissions linked to alcohol misuse, which costs Scotland £3.6 billion every year.

Commenting, SNP MSP Sandra White said:

“This is excellent news, and a clear vindication of the Scottish Government’s policy.

“This ruling now allows us to go ahead with the policy that was overwhelmingly backed by the Scottish Parliament five years ago and take the action that is needed to cut alcohol-related deaths and reduce hospital admissions

“The health and wellbeing of people across Scotland is absolutely paramount – and the fact that alcohol misuse costs Scotland £3.6 billion every year shows how damaging our relationship with alcohol is.

“Given the clear and proven link between consumption and harm, minimum pricing is the most effective and efficient way to tackle the cheap, high strength alcohol that causes so much damage to so many families.

“We will continue to support the whisky industry and work alongside them to ensure their economic success, while maintaining our commitment to promote safe and responsible alcohol consumption.

“Scotland is the first country in the world to implement such a policy – and we should be proud of our pioneering approach that will benefit Glasgow and Scotland for generations.”

 

Famous Glasgow Parks in running for Best Park Award – find out how to vote here.

Sandra White MSP has welcomed news that a number of Glasgow’s famous parks have been shortlisted in the running for the Fields in Trust Best Park Award 2017.

Recognising the placement of the Necropolis, Hayburn Park, Kelvingrove Park, and the Children’s Wood in the top contenders list, Sandra White MSP for Glasgow Kelvin said:

“I am pleased to see so many of Glasgow’s wonderful green spaces recognised in these national parks awards. These parks are a point of pride for the city, enjoyed by generations, and contribute significantly to our wellbeing an environment.”

“I welcome the Fields in Trust’s ongoing efforts to champion and protect our parks and green spaces, and therefore encourage everyone to take part in the voting for the country’s best park”.

Vote for Glasgow Kelvin’s top parks here:

Glasgow Necropolis, G4 0UZ

“Originally called Fir Park then The Merchants Park before becoming a Victorian cemetery, the burial place of those that made Glasgow the Second City of the Empire. Situated on a hill above Glasgow Cathedral it is a 37 acres/15 hectare wildlife haven and very popular place to walk.”

Vote Here

Hayburn Park, G11 5AX

“A much loved local park. Small but perfectly formed. A small and dedicated team of volunteers helps maintain and improve it and bring the community together with events. Enjoyed by all ages, the park is an oasis of green in the midst of narrow streets and winding lanes. A gem.”

Vote Here

Kelvingrove Park, G3 6BY

“There are two children’s play areas, a skate park, a pond, an outdoor gym, bowling greens, tennis courts, an Art Gallery & Museum, a University, two cafes, a bar, the river Kelvin, an amphitheatre, a fountain, monuments, flora, a Green Flag, a tree lined thoroughfare & a permanent, long standing Circus.”

Vote Here

The Children’s Wood, G20 8PR
“An amazing outdoor space in a rural area that gives children of all ages experiences they would otherwise miss out on.”

Vote Here

 


 

Motion to the Scottish Parliament:

Motion Number: S5M-08520
Lodged By: Sandra White
Date Lodged: 30/10/2017

Title: Glasgow Parks Shortlisted for National Award

Motion Text:
That the Parliament welcomes the nomination of the Glasgow Necropolis, Hayburn Park, Kelvingrove Park and the Children’s Wood for the Fields in Trust Best Park Award 2017; understands that Fields in Trust aims to protect and champion parks and green spaces for communities to enjoy, and has protected over 2,700 sites; notes that the award gives the public the opportunity to vote for their favourite local green space and that the top park in each of Scotland, Wales, England and Northern Ireland will be shortlisted for the main award, and values the recognition and support of Glasgow’s green spaces and great parks.

Glasgow’s local business Rate Relief recipients double to 10,000 during life of Scottish Government.

The Scottish Government’s Small Business Bonus scheme has helped to support 9,953 of businesses in Glasgow this year – with the new figures proving once again the SNP Scottish Government’s commitment to local jobs and communities, SNP MSP for Glasgow Kelvin has said.

Across Scotland, the Small Business Bonus Scheme, brought about by the SNP Government in 2008/09, paid out over £226 million in 2017-18, supporting over 103,000 local firms by reducing their rates liability and taking some firms out of business rates altogether.

And across Glasgow, the number of firms benefiting from this flagship Scottish Government policy has doubled, from 4,713 in 2008 to 9,953 in 2017/18, with £27.5m being spent across Glasgow to support local businesses this year.

Commenting, local SNP MSP Sandra White said:

“These figures prove the success of the Small Business Bonus for firms across Glasgow.

“To have nearly 10,000 businesses in Glasgow and over 103,000 across Scotland benefiting from this policy is good for jobs and good for communities – helping to keep more money in our neighbourhoods and boosting our high streets.

“Over the last decade, the Scottish Government has taken strong action to support local businesses, while other parties have carped from the sidelines and chased cheap headlines rather than actually doing anything to support local jobs.

“It is the SNP that has delivered over £226 million of rates relief across Scotland in 2017/18 – and over £27.5m in Glasgow alone.

“Only the SNP are taking the necessary action to help our local firms – and it is great to see 9,953 firms benefiting from this in the last year.”

Sandra back musicians fight against Brexit work and travel barriers

Sandra White MSP has supported the Musicians Union’s call to ensure no barriers for work and travel in Europe following Brexit.

Joining over 150 parliamentarians in signing the pledge to fight for free movement and crucial access for musicians and lodging a motion to the Scottish Parliament on the issue, Sandra continues to highlight the need for citizens rights to be protected following the UK’s Brexit plans.

With the largest cultural economy in the world, relative to GDP, the creative industries provide significant contribution to our economy worth over £87bn in GVA and employing 1 in 11 people. However, it is reliant on free access across Europe, and musicians are very concerned about the potential for work permits and visas.

 

A petition launched in September has attracted over 19,000 signatures, with the majority of people signing via a Change.org petition.

The Musicians Union is also encouraging all musicians to share their experiences of touring, performing, teaching and other work in the EU on social media using the hashtag #WorkingInTheEU.

Recognising Scotland’s vote to remain in the EU, and the needs for workers rights across the country, Sandra is committed to halting Brexit and supports the Scottish Government’s efforts to put citizens rights at the heart of negotiations.

For musicians and other workers, Sandra wishes to maintain the ability to tour and trade easily with Europe, our largest export market, and to attract talent, secure IP protection, EU arts funding, workers’ rights, and the rights of EU citizens in the UK.

Horace Trubridge, Musicians’ Union General Secretary said:

“British musicians have long enjoyed easy access to touring in Europe, as UK venues and festivals have benefited from easy access to European performers. We know from touring in the US elsewhere, that visas and other restrictions impose significant costs and administration, and occasionally considerable financial loss when visas aren’t processed in time. We are calling on MPs and the Government to help secure a deal that will ensure ease of movement for touring and performing post-Brexit”.  

Sandra White, MSP for Glasgow Kelvin says:

“Today, I confirmed my support for professional musicians and performers, I will continue to work with the Scottish Government to put citizens rights at the heart of our Brexit negotiations with the UK Government, and to ensure that Scotland’s ambitions to remain European citizens with all the rights that confers is recognised.

“As with all of our citizens, I want to see our musicians continue to have crucial access to Europe, and I join colleagues calling for their rights to tour and perform with minimum administrative burdens”.