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Recent updates

  • Article: Feb 12, 2020

    Responding to the announcement that the Scottish Government will hold a drugs conference in Glasgow, the day before the UK Government holds its own drugs summit in the city, Scottish Liberal Democrat public health spokesperson Rosemary Bruce said:

    "The Scottish and UK Governments ought to be working together to solve this crisis, not engaging in petty point scoring by holding separate conferences on the same issue in the same city only a day apart.

  • Article: Feb 11, 2020

    Scottish Liberal Democrat Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today announced that he will bid to make MSPs and all other elected members in Scotland subject to a PVG check, introducing a new safeguards for children and vulnerable adults and helping protect against people using elected status as a platform for predatory or exploitative behaviour.

  • Article: Feb 11, 2020

    Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie has urged the Scottish Parliament's standards committee to reconsider introducing measures to allow constituents to recall MSPs.

    The UK Parliament passed legislation applying to the recall of MPs in 2015. In March 2018, Mr Rennie gave evidence to the Scottish Parliament's standards committee urging them to act. However, the committee rejected the measure.

  • Article: Feb 11, 2020

    Liberal Democrat Constitutional Affairs spokesperson Wendy Chamberlain MP has branded the Home Office as 'not fit for purpose' as she tabled an amendment to an SNP motion due to be heard in the House of Commons on Tuesday afternoon.

    The amendment condemns the Conservative Government's Hostile Environment, which has caused people to be wrongly denied access to public services, evicted from their homes, detained and deported and calls upon all parties to work across the chamber to fix the Home Office.

  • Article: Feb 6, 2020

    Commenting on this afternoon's budget statement, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said:

    "This is a budget that is going to need substantial revisions.

    "We need to see serious efforts to support local government, the police, mental health, nursery education and the environment.

    "In particular, councils are buckling under pressure. The services they manage have been scraped back and back by years of underfunding and this budget doesn't deliver a fraction of the funding they need to get things back on track.

  • Article: Feb 6, 2020

    Earlier this year, I came out as pansexual, becoming the first openly pan MP. This February is of particular significance for me. It is the first LGBT History Month I have openly celebrated as part of the community.

    I did not come out to be heralded as a trailblazer. But upon coming out, I realised that my public visibility meant a lot to a lot of people. Many people in the LGBT+ community, especially those who fall under the 'B', 'T' or '+', don't feel visible to or accepted by the rest of society. These identities are often treated with suspicion or cynicism because people simply don't know what they are.

  • Article: Feb 5, 2020

    Commenting on the full review of Scotland's curriculum announced by the Cabinet Secretary for Education, Scottish Liberal Democrat education spokesperson Beatrice Wishart MSP said:

    "Something has gone wrong in Scottish education. We have plummeted down the international rankings.

    "Teachers workloads are intolerable. There has been continuing confusion about the responsibilities of Education Scotland. Abolishing the survey of literacy and numeracy when the results declined, to replace it with new national testing, has made it harder to see what is really going on.

  • Article: Feb 5, 2020

    Responding to the Independent Inquiry into Mental Health Services in Tayside which warns of "a breakdown of trust in many aspects of the provision of mental health services in Tayside" and makes 51 recommendations for improving services, Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said:

  • Article: Feb 5, 2020

    Week in, week out, either at my constituency surgery or in my inbox or just through conversations with friends and acquaintances, I hear yet another tragic story of a child or young person struggling with their mental health, having to battle to get any sort of help.

    Inadequate funding under the Conservatives has left Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) close to breaking point

  • Article: Feb 5, 2020

    Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today demanded both of Scotland's governments urgently adopt new policies to tackle the "emergency" of homeless deaths, after the first ever statistics for Scotland revealed 195 homeless people died in 2018 - 4 a week.

    They also showed:

    • Scotland had the highest rate of homeless deaths of all GB countries in 2018, with a rate more than twice that of England or Wales.
    • a 19% increase on the estimated 164 deaths in 2017.
    • 53% of deaths in 2018 were drug-related (up from 41% in 2017).
    • 8% of deaths in 2018 were suicide
    • 8% of deaths in 2018 were alcohol-related
    • 79% of those who died were male, while the mean age at death was 43 for females and 44 for males.