Scottish Women’s Rights Centre
That the Parliament welcomes the launch of the Scottish Women’s Rights Centre on 22 April 2015 in Glasgow; understands that the centre will help women who have experienced domestic abuse and gender-based violence; further understands that the centre will provide legal advice and information; notes that Sandy Brindley, from Rape Crisis Scotland, said that “women….need access to free specialist legal advice and support” and that the centre, through a weekly helpline, will help make them aware of their rights; further notes that Paul Wheelhouse, the Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, said that “tackling the scourge of domestic abuse and sexual violence is a huge priority for the Scottish Government”, and hopes that the new centre will make a difference to women who are experiencing domestic abuse.
IFS Report Reveals Devastating Impact of Full Fiscal Autonomy
That the Parliament notes the new report from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), Full fiscal autonomy delayed? The SNP’s plans for further devolution to Scotland; understands that the impartial and independent experts at the IFS warn of the devastating impact of the SNP’s plans for full fiscal autonomy within the UK; notes that the report predicts that, by the end of the decade, the gap in Scotland’s finances is expected to grow to £9.7 billion per year; shares what it understands is the IFS’s view that the SNP’s proposal to simply delay full fiscal autonomy would not deal with this fiscal gap and that, when current spending and revenue forecasts are taken into account, the gap is likely to grow over the coming years;
Responding to a published letter about his views on 20 mph speed limits
For clarity, I have never intimated that I am against 20mph speed limits.
What I was suggesting was that a balanced and common sense approach to this issue must be adopted by Local Authorities.
I made clear that 20mph speed limits are perfectly acceptable in the vicinity of schools, built up urban areas, heavily populated areas or where there was a collision history.
I also intimated that I would prefer that drivers were concentrating on the road ahead and not on the speedometer needle or digital speed display.
Drivers are taught to drive to the conditions prevailing at the time.
Responsible Business Week 2015
That the Parliament welcomes Responsible Business Week 2015, which takes place across the UK from 20 to 26 April; understands that it serves as an opportunity for businesses to showcase best practice and expertise and to demonstrate the positive impact that they can make; notes that it is run by Business in the Community, which is a charity that offers practical ways for businesses to work together and to take action to deliver a fairer society and a more sustainable future; notes that a number of events will take place across Scotland, including a community clean-up of Stanmore Gardens in Mount Florida in Glasgow on 22 April, in which organisations such as Enable, Clydesdale Bank and Scottish Gas will take part, and a risk management webinar on 24 April to help small and medium-sized businesses in developing a better understanding of how to prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies, and commends all participating companies that are aiming to make responsible business part of their business model.
Highlands and Islands (including Moray) (Labour) MSP, David Stewart, introduced a Member’s Bill, ‘Buildings (Recovery of Expenses) (Scotland) Bill’, which became law last year and gives Local Authorities extra powers to re-coup their costs when dealing with defective and dangerous buildings.
The Bill reintroduces charging orders which will enable Local Authorities to recover their costs in a more efficient and cost effective manner.
Congratulations to Professor Jun Wei—That the Parliament congratulates the scientist, Jun Wei, who is based in Inverness, on being made a professor by the University of the Highlands and Islands; notes that Professor Wei was awarded the title in recognition of his contribution to the university’s division of health research based at the Centre for Health Science in Inverness; notes that Professor Wei conducts research into conditions including schizophrenia, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and stroke;