The Refugee Crisis – Scotland’s response attracts U.N. praise Scotland has led the way in highlighting the inadequacy of the UK Government’s response to the refugee crisis and has established a multi-agency Refugee Operation Task Force comprising local government and other stakeholders who are working to ensure services across Scotland are ready to welcome refugees into our communities. Scotland has shown that it stands ready to take its immediate fair share of refugees from the current crisis with the majority of Scotland’s councils, faith groups, community organisations, schools and ordinary citizens offering to help. Scotland’s Minister for Europe, Humza Yousaf MSP, has welcomed the hugeRead More →

Following reports that the UK has sold military equipment to countries that regularly use child soldiers or where children are targeted in warzones, the SNP’s Defence spokesperson Brendan O’Hara has called for immediate clarification on the breaches of UN protocol.As the Defence Security and Equipment International (DSEI), the world’s largest arms fair, begins tomorrow (Tuesday) in London, new figures have revealed that out of 23 countries listed by the UN for grave violations against children or where child soldiers are used the UK sold military hardware to 19.The UK has sold £2.4 million worth of military hardware to the Democratic Republic of Congo since 2010,Read More →

The SNP Constituency candidates have all now been chosen and the Regional List selection procedures are well underway throughout the country. Up here in the Highlands, Fergus Ewing was reselected to stand for Inverness & Nairn with Orkney’s Professor Donna Heddle from the UHI’s Centre of Nordic Studies standing against LibDem Liam McArthur for her home seat. We are sadly losing two well respected and experienced parliamentarians as they retire – Dave Thompson, the MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch and Rob Gibson, MSP for Caithness, Sutherland & Ross although their successors look likely to be a popular choice for the electorate. Replacing Dave isRead More →

I was taught by a former Sales Manager that God gave us two eyes, two ears and only one mouth. And that we should learn to use them in proportion. “When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know; but when you listen, you may learn something new.” She was talking about learning what our customers really wanted but I was reminded of these wise words often as I watched the comedy which is the Labour Leadership elections play out. Strangely enough, it was thinking about the referendum campaign which first formed the link. There is ample evidence that the Unionist forces hadRead More →

What is the hostility to taking refugees into the UK? Today I have heard all sorts of excuses, some of the most pathetic were “well we know some of them are criminal gangs, we don’t want them” and “we can’t afford to keep our own people so why should we keep them?”. Basically we are far too well off and far too comfortable on this European Island. We simply cannot connect to these people who are having to flea their own countries to survive. Why else would you risk taking babies and toddlers on such dangerous journeys unless you really had no hope in yourRead More →

UNITED NATIONS TO PROBE TORY WELFARE REFORMS The SNP has urged the UK Government to fully cooperate with UN investigators following reports that the United Nations are to probe UK Government welfare reforms following a complaint that there had “grave and systematic” violations of disabled people’s human rights. So concerned are the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that they have already launched a formal investigation – and it is believed that a team will shortly visit the UK – and Scotland- to talk to those directly hit by the deep and continuing assault of Tory cuts. Last year United Nations SpecialRead More →

Almost everybody I meet at the moment asks me what it’s like to be an MP. So I thought I’d explain a wee bit about The House of Commons part of the job. Parliament meets in Westminster roughly 32 weeks a year. The weeks vary drastically, but usually I leave the house about 7am on a Monday morning and fly to London. I go straight to Westminster and arrive by 1pm. Parliament sits from 2:30pm to 10pm on a Monday, although a half hour adjournment debate follows the 10pm votes. On Tuesday and Wednesday the House sits 11:30am to 7pm and on Thursdays from 9:30amRead More →

“A nation’s greatness is measured by how it treats its weakest members.” ~ Mahatma Ghandi Although I don’t consider Great Britain to be a nation, this quote surely does apply to it. How can Britain continue to call itself great when it allows its government to treat the weakest members of our society the way it does. The current situation is merely the tip of the mountain the Tories wish to push our people down. “…the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; thoseRead More →

SNP MP Eilidh Whiteford is calling for an immediate halt to all sanctions in response to concerns that DWP staff are put under pressure to hit targets.   Dr Whiteford has written to Minister for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith saying that a “root and branch” independent review must be carried out immediately following a sorry catalogue of errors at the government department.   In recent weeks it has emerged that the DWP shamelessly fabricated success stories for a leaflet, that half of JSA and ESA sanctions were overturned when reviewed and today a whistle-blower has revealed that staff are under pressure from bossesRead More →