Sunday, 12 March 2017

Promote the mental health of all pupils

The impact of mental health on the attainment of children and young people is highlighted by a new publication from Children in Scotland and Youthlink Scotland. It refers to 1 in 5 children experiencing mental health issues before the age of 11. 

There is a need for Education Services to make changes to focus on intervening to address the mental health issues affecting children and young people. The views of children and young people have to be gathered to help shape the service provision that is developed as part of reducing the attainment gap. 

I agree with the recommendations that councillors have to work to promote the mental health of all pupils; protect third sector grants and youth work budgets; work with headteachers and parent councils to improve mental health and attainment; encourage participatory approaches to decision-making; and ensure there is a central information point listing services available for children and young people across Glasgow.

Ban Fracking

Yesterday, I met activists highlighting the dangerous from fracking and received a copy of their leaflet. Evidence was provided about the risks associated with hydraulic fracking.

Fracking can be banned as it does not help to reduce carbon emissions and stop climate chaos. Further information is available from Frackwatch Glasgow at:
and also, Scottish Green Party at

St. Georges Cross Underpass Lit Up

In the last week, we have experienced lighting faults in St. Georges Cross underpass. This caused concern for people's safety walking through this route. I reported the need for lighting repairs and the lights were back on by 10th March. 

View of lights on at St Georges Cross Underpass

Any problems with street lighting can be reported to Glasgow's Roads and Lighting Faults Helpline at:

Support for walking and cycling

Yesterday, at the Scottish Green Party's Spring Conference, I met up with representatives from Go Bike to provide support for the campaign to increase investment in cycling and walking. 

Three priorities supported are investment, infrastructure and local action.

Green councillor candidates support "We Walk, We Cycle, We Vote".

During the last year, I have requested additional cycle hire sites across the Hillhead area, including Hyndland Railway Station. Also, I have given my support for the development of the Woodside Mini-Holland Project. I have supported a Green budget proposal to provide £8m for cycling routes, the North Glasgow City Way and East Glasgow City Way in 2017-18.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

25th Anniversary of Khojaly Massacre

Today, the 26th February 2017 marks the 25th anniversary of the attack on the town of Khojaly in Azerbaijan by the invading Armenian forces. I express my sympathy to the families of the 613 men, women and children who were killed during this attack.We call on Armenian forces to end their occupation in accordance with the UN Security Council resolutions 822, 853, 874 and 884. 

Flowers of remembrance and message of hope 
left at a memorial in Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park.

The events in Khojaly are a sobering reminder of the terrible damage that can be inflicted in wartime and the enduring need for greater understanding, communication and tolerance among people around the world.

I understand that Azerbaijanis living in Scotland and around the globe observe 26th February every year as a day of remembrance, honouring the victims of the Khojaly massacre, and hope that, through highlighting the anniversary of the tragedy, international efforts to find a lasting peaceful resolution to this long-standing conflict will be renewed.

Safe access to abortion services

Yesterday, I supported a peaceful group standing up for abortion rights and pro-choice in George Square. We protested at the plans by "40 Days for Life" for using tactics of intimidation and harassment towards women accessing family planning services provided by the NHS. Women who are choosing to access abortion services are systematically targeted and pestered outside clinics in Glasgow.  

Pro-choice activists called for women to not only be guaranteed safe abortions, but also safe passage while accessing services.  

Research by the Abortion Rights Campaign has highlighted that anti-abortion gatherings around clinics causes significant distress to women and invades their right to privacy. 

Whilst the limited number of people who have religious objections to all abortions are entitled to their views, it is not acceptable that they are allowed to harass women accessing abortion services in Glasgow.  Further information from Abortion Rights Campaign at:

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Support for Woodlands Clean Up

Today, I supported a clean up by volunteers organised by Woodlands Community Development. This involved tidying up rubbish dumped in the lanes across the area. There were mattresses, furnishings and builder's waste to be uplifted. 

Clean up of a lane underway.

There have been monthly clean up over the last 6 months and this is helping to ensure the back lanes are kept clear of rubbish. Local residents who volunteer are able to socialise and get to know each other as part of the clean ups.