A Green MSP for West of Scotland
It’s been a while since we sent out a branch newsletter, but we’ve been plenty busy during this period and we’ve got something to show for it – the first ever Green MSP for the West of Scotland, Ross Greer.
Ross is also the youngest ever MSP, so we’ve managed two firsts this time round!
Thanks to everyone who helped out with the campaign. Without you chapping on doors, delivering leaflets, holding street stalls, and generally just talking to people about what a Green Holyrood could do for them, we wouldn’t have achieved such great results across East Renfrewshire. Without others doing this throughout the region, we wouldn’t have our first Green MSP.
(Photo by Tommy Doherty)
Every conversation made a difference. Now, with six MSPs in the Scottish parliament, we’ve got a chance to work to bring in some of the bold policies we’ve been campaigning for. The Scottish Government are already looking at our policy supporting young carers, and there’s so much more we can do to make sure that our parliament works for the interests of communities, people in rental housing, average and lower earners, public transport users and teachers.
None of this would have been possible without you.
Scotland’s Future in the European Union
Speaking of what’s possible, Ross Greer gave his début speech as an MSP this week, and he used the opportunity to argue that the referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union doesn’t have to be dominated by two different conservative visions of the future:
Europe has brought huge benefit to our environment: it was European regulation that forced the UK Government to eliminate acid rain and smog; it was European regulation that stopped the dumping of raw sewage into our oceans and made our beaches cleaner, safer and more attractive; and it is European regulation that makes our air more breathable and less polluted.
What exactly is the red tape that opponents of the European Union talk of? Is it all of the above? Is it the health and safety legislation that has reduced the number of workplace deaths by two thirds in two decades? Is it the limited attempts to bring the bankers to heel? Is it the legislation that makes our air breathable, protects our wildlife and keeps our beaches clean? That is exactly the kind of red tape that they are talking about, and it is only a fraction of what the EU has brought us.
Date and Venue of Next Branch Meeting – June 1st at the Cartvale from 7.30pm
Now we’ve had a minute to rest after the election, we’ll be planning our next moves at our June branch meeting, which will be held tomorrow (Wednesday 1st June) at the Cartvale in Busby from 7.30pm.
The minutes of our previous meeting are available for download on GreenTalk now. If there’s anything you want see discussed at the meeting, please let us know either at this email address or over on the relevant GreenTalk discussion.
Councillor Selection – 2017
There’s plenty for us to be campaigning on in our local area, from the ongoing redesign of the services provided by Thornliebank and Barrhead Resource Centres, to fuel poverty in the area, to the poor transport links to the new Eastwood Health Centre and beyond.
(Photo by Tommy Doherty)
The 2017 local government elections will provide us with an opportunity to build on all of the hard work we put into this year’s Holyrood campaign, and to work to represent the communities we live in by ensuring that Green voices are heard in East Renfrewshire Council. As such, we’re looking to select our councillors at our July meeting.
Are you interested in standing? Why not come along to June’s meeting to talk about it?
Anyway, that’s enough for me from now.
Thanks for your time and patience – here’s to another successful year!
East Renfrewshire Greens