Scottish Greens – East Renfrewshire

Protecting Public Services in East Renfrewshire

No matter where you live in East Renfrewshire, your public services are under threat. In Busby, East Renfrewshire Council (ERC) are selling Bonnyton House, our last publicly owned care home, despite proposals from campaigners that would allow ERC to keep Bonnyton House open and make the required savings.

Meanwhile, the Barrhead and Neilston Disabled Forum (Band F) faces uncertainty about its future as ERC considers withdrawing the funding that pays for halls carers and transport.

UK government cuts have put enormous stress on council budgets.  That’s why our Green MSPs highlighted the issue of how much council money is spent paying back unfair contracts and called for this to be cleared – a move that would add £11 million a year to ERC’s budget! It’s also why we will continue to campaign to replace the unfair council tax with a local taxation system that gives councils flexibility and responsibility. Our Green MSPs managed to prevent a massive £160million of cuts in their budget negotiations with the Scottish Government this year, £3 million of which will go towards public services in East Renfrewshire.

With the services that exist to serve the elderly and the disabled in our communities already strained by years of successive cuts, the need for further action to protect services is clear.

Greens co-convenor and former councillor Maggie Chapman pioneered the participative budgeting approach now being adopted nationwide by championing Leith Decides, where the community were directly involved in budget decisions.

Meanwhile, Green councillor Ian Baxter recently secured an amendment to the Midlothian council budget that saved vital local services by investing in community owned renewable project that will pay back into council budgets moving forward.

Vote Green in 2017 for councillors who are willing to listen to the public and to look for solutions beyond the “business as usual” approach of other parties!

David Allison (council candidate for Barrhead, Liboside and Uplawmoor) 

Laura Stevens (council candidate for Clarkston, Netherlee and Williamwood) 

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We can make history in East Renfrewshire in May 2017. Help us elect the area’s first Green councillors!

Crowdfunderhttp://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/help-elect-east-rens-first-green-councillors

Upcoming Events:

  • Saturday 18th March – Campaign Stall in Barrhead
  • Saturday 1st April – Campaign Stall in Clarkston
  • Saturday 15th April – Campaign Stall in Barrhead
  • Saturday 29th April – Campaign Stalls in Clarkston AND Barrhead
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2 comments on “Protecting Public Services in East Renfrewshire

  1. DJ
    March 15, 2017

    Nice of you to notice Bonnyton House. My question is to your co-convenor PH himself. Are you really going to sacrifice your party as the craven lapdogs of the SNP on their altar of a 2nd. referendum? Remember the Lib Dems and they were a bigger party than the Greens. I would have thought neverendums and the associated costs not to mention the trees destroyed for paper would be an affront to Green principles but maybe we are learning the Greens do not have principles, just a thirst for a crumb of power from their masters table!

    Like

  2. daval82
    March 15, 2017

    DJ – from the tone of your comments I suspect that you’ve made up your mind on these matters, but a few points:

    *With regards to us “noticing” Bonnyton House, we have campaigned consistently on this issue over the past couple of years, attempting to raise awareness of the situation and drive support for the Save Bonnyton House campaign in our newsletters and blog posts, on social media, in statements to the press, and during our interactions with the public on the street and at the doorstep.

    For example, here’s a statement on the decision to sell Bonnyton House that we put out in October 2015:
    https://eastrengreens.com/2015/10/08/statement-on-the-decision-to-sell-bonnyton-house/

    We are serious in our commitment to protecting public services and if elected to East Renfrewshire Council we will do what we can to prevent the sale of Bonnyton House.

    * As to Scottish Independence, like all of our branch’s current activities the above post is focused on the upcoming local authority election and what can be done to support vital local services and make the council more accountable to those it exists to serve.

    While some other parties are trying to make the council elections a proxy for the independence referendum, the Scottish Green will be trying to bring the focus back to local issues throughout this campaign. See, for example, yesterday’s post on the lack of accessible taxis in the area: https://eastrengreens.com/2017/03/14/accessible-taxis-in-east-renfrewshire/

    That being said, the idea that Greens support Scottish independence purely to court favour with the SNP, or because of the lust for power of one party member, is entirely wrong. Green support the principle of local autonomy, which is why we want council to be more responsible for their own affairs, and why we will seek to put residents at the heart of local decision making. Support for Scottish independence is a long standing principle of the party for similar reasons, and the decision to support a Yes vote in the previous referendum was made democratically at the party conference.

    The UK government is pushing in a number of directions that we believe will have dire social and environmental consequences, hobbling renewable energy and public services, building a low-wage economy based on insecure employment, and using the lives of our friends and neighbors as bargaining chips in its negotiations with the EU. The Scottish Green Party believes that Scottish independence would allow us to build a just, caring society, to invest in the industries of the future, and to do all of this while building the sort of economy that will be needed to meet the massive existential threat of climate change. We respect that not everyone agrees with us, but we think it is right to give the public another say on the matter in the current circumstances.

    For all your inflammatory rhetoric about the SNP being our “masters”, our MSPs have worked to provide a constructive opposition in Holyrood. We recently tried to negotiate for “poverty-proofing” and pro-LGBT+ measures to be adopted in the education sector, we continue to oppose their proposed cut to Air Passenger Duty on environmental grounds, and we have set out proposals that would allow the government to ban fracking and continue to pressure the SNP to make up their mind on this topic.

    Thanks for your time.

    David Allison
    East Renfrewshire Greens Comms Team

    Like

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