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Minimum Unit Pricing

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, Welcomes Supreme Court Minimum Price Ruling

 

Policy Will Help Improve Scotland’s Relationship With Alcohol

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, has welcomed the UK Supreme Court’s ruling that the Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing policy is legal, allowing the legislation to proceed as part of efforts to improve Scotland’s damaging relationship with alcohol.

The policy was passed by the Scottish Parliament in 2012, but has been delayed due to a long-running legal challenge. Today’s ruling allows it to go ahead, setting a minimum unit price on alcohol of 50 pence.

Minimum unit pricing is backed by academic research, which suggests that the policy will cut alcohol-related deaths and reduce hospital admissions linked to alcohol misuse, which costs Scotland £3.6 billion every year.

 Commenting, George said:

 

This is excellent news, and a clear vindication of the Scottish Government’s policy.

 

“This ruling now allows us to go ahead with the policy that was overwhelmingly backed by the Scottish Parliament five years ago and take the action that is needed to cut alcohol-related deaths and reduce hospital admissions

 

“The health and wellbeing of people across Scotland is absolutely paramount – and the fact that alcohol misuse costs Scotland £3.6 billion every year shows how damaging our relationship with alcohol is.

 

“Given the clear and proven link between consumption and harm, minimum pricing is the most effective and efficient way to tackle the cheap, high strength alcohol that causes so much damage to so many families.

 

“We will continue to support the whisky industry and work alongside them to ensure their economic success, while maintaining our commitment to promote safe and responsible alcohol consumption.

 

“Scotland is the first country in the world to implement such a policy – and we should be proud of our pioneering approach that will benefit Paisley and Scotland for generations.”

 

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SNP Takes The Lead On Income Tax Discussion

Tax Must “Protect Low Earners, Be Progressive And Proportionate”

 George sma shot portrait

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, has welcomed the publication of a discussion paper on the role of income tax in Scotland and praised the Scottish Government for taking the initiative to discuss the issue in an open and honest manner.

 

The Scottish Government’s paper includes proposals from all of Scotland’s political parties – with progressive parties backing varied measures in order to support public services, and Tory proposals supporting tax cuts for highest earners at the expense of public services.

 

The First Minister also outlined that any changes to income tax in Scotland must pass four key tests – including supporting public services, ensuring the lowest earners don’t see their taxes increase, making the system more progressive, and supporting the economy.

 

Commenting, George said:

 

“This discussion paper outlines the various proposals of Scotland’s political parties and where we stand heading towards the budget.

 

“It is perfectly clear that the Tories are isolated on taxation, as they are on so many other issues – with their proposals only offering a tax cut for the wealthiest and continued austerity for the rest of us.

 

“People in Paisley and across Scotland have the right to an open and honest discussion about the income tax that they will pay – and this is exactly what the Scottish Government is delivering.

 

“We need to be prepared to ask these difficult questions and to work with other parties to find an answer that means individuals and businesses are treated fairly and pay the right amount for the services that they receive in return.

 

“And as we work towards delivering a budget that works for Paisley and all of Scotland, we can rest assured that the Scottish Government will bring forward policy proposals that are in the interests of everyone, protecting the lowest earners and our public services in Paisley as opposed to just standing up for a wealthy few and putting our education and health services on the bonfire.”

 

 

Business Bonus Benefitting Local Companies In Paisley


Scottish Government Scheme Supports 2665 Businesses With Rates Relief

 

The Scottish Government’s Small Business Bonus scheme has helped to support 2598 of businesses in Renfrewshire this year – with the new figures proving once again the SNP Scottish Government’s commitment to local jobs and communities, Paisleys MSP, George Adam has said.

 

Across Scotland, the Small Business Bonus Scheme, brought about by the SNP Government in 2008/09, paid out over £226 million in 2017-18, supporting over 103,000 local firms by reducing their rates liability and taking some firms out of business rates altogether.

 

And across Paisley, the number of firms benefitting from this flagship Scottish Government policy has risen from 1797 in 2008 to 2665 in 2017/18, with 6.6 million being spent across Renfrewshire to support local businesses this year.

Commenting, George said:

 

“These figures prove the success of the Small Business Bonus for firms across Paisley.

 

“To have 2665 businesses in Renfrewshire and over 103,000 across Scotland benefitting from this policy is good for jobs and good for communities – helping to keep more money in our neighbourhoods and boosting our high streets.

 

“Over the last decade, the Scottish Government has taken strong action to support local businesses, while other parties have carped from the sidelines and chased cheap headlines rather than actually doing anything to support local jobs.

 

“It is the SNP that has delivered over £226 million of rates relief across Scotland in 2017/18 – and over 6.6 million in Renfrewshire alone.

 

“Only the SNP are taking the necessary action to help our local firms – and it is great to see 2598 firms benefitting from this in the last year.”

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, backs musicians in his constituency to get the best possible deal from Brexit

 

Musicians are very concerned that the Brexit process may lead to the introduction of individual member state work permits and/or visas for British musicians touring and working across Europe.

 

Most professional musicians and performers rely on touring and travelling for their careers and livelihoods and gigs are often organised at short notice.

 

As some performers can be working in several different European countries over the course of a few days, the possible introduction of work permissions and/or visas for British musicians touring and working in Europe could be extremely detrimental.

The Musicians’ Union launched its free movement campaign in Spring 2017.

 

Over 150 MSPs, MPs, Peers and MEPs have signed the pledge to do all they can to ensure musicians can travel freely and easily post-Brexit for time-limited activities such as touring and performing, with minimum administrative burdens.

 

A petition launched in September has attracted over 19,000 signatures, with the majority of people signing via a Change.org petition.

 

The MU is also encouraging all musicians to share their experiences of touring, performing, teaching and other work in the EU on social media using the hashtag #WorkingInTheEU.

 

The creative industries are worth over £87bn in GVA to the UK economy – more than oil and gas, life sciences and aerospace combined – and is the fastest-growing sector of the economy, employing 1 in 11 people.

 

The UK has the largest cultural economy in the world relative to GDP, is the largest producer of recorded music in Europe, and is the second largest exporter of music (after the US).

 

It is vital we get the best possible deal for the sector in a number of areas that have been so critical to its success – the ability to tour and trade easily with the UK’s largest export market and to attract talent, IP protection, EU arts funding, workers’ rights and the rights of EU citizens in the UK.

 

Horace Trubridge, Musicians’ Union General Secretary says: “British musicians have long enjoyed easy access to touring in Europe, as UK venues and festivals have benefited from easy access to European performers. We know from touring in the US elsewhere, that visas and other restrictions impose significant costs and administration, and occasionally considerable financial loss when visas aren’t processed in time. We are calling on MPs and the Government to help secure a deal that will ensure ease of movement for touring and performing post-Brexit”.

 

George said: “Today, I confirmed my support for professional musicians and performers in my constituency, and will urge the Government to ensure that they can continue to be able to travel easily across Europe post-Brexit for touring and performing with minimum administrative burdens”.

George Adam MSP Backs Charity’s Campaign Calling On Restaurants To Consider Customers With Hearing Loss

George Adam MSP is backing a charity campaign calling on restaurants across Paisley to consider improving their acoustics for customers who have hearing loss.

 

As part of its Speak Easy campaign, Action on Hearing Loss Scotland is highlighting that high levels of background music or the buzz of loud chatter between customers can cause difficulties for people who use hearing aids to follow conversations with their fellow diners.

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, said: “Everyone loves going out for a meal but Action on Hearing Loss Scotland tell me they are often contacted by people who are hard of hearing about intrusive levels of background noise, exacerbated by hard surfaces, which can create real difficulties in hearing their dining companions.

“I’m pleased to support the charity’s Speak Easy campaign which is encouraging customers with hearing loss to give feedback to restaurants so that they can consider the many small but very effective ways in which they can be more accessible.”

 

Delia Henry, Director of Action on Hearing Loss Scotland, said: “Restaurants in Paisley which may be inadvertently deterring customers with hearing loss from making bookings can significantly improve their accessibility by reducing the volume of background noise in perhaps parts of their venue, using soft furnishings that better absorb sound, and by considering investing in better acoustic treatments.”

 

The charity’s campaign is also urging customers to leave reviews on websites such as TripAdvisor to help others to decide if the restaurants they have visited are suitable for hard of hearing people.

Action on Hearing Loss’s Speak Easy campaign pack can be downloaded www.actiononhearingloss.org.uk/SpeakEasy

Grass almost up to your knees is currently plotting the Paisley landscape

The Brexit Bombshell: Farmer’s Incomes Could Halve After No Deal

 

Farmers in Scotland could see their incomes cut in half after Brexit, a report by the Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board has warned.

The staggering new research warns that a No Deal Brexit, as increasingly threatened by Theresa May, is one of a number of threats to farm incomes – alongside possible changes to tariffs and subsidies.

The report finds that the “worst-case scenario” would see average farm profits across the UK fall from £38,000 a year to just £15,000.

Grass almost up to your knees is currently plotting the Paisley landscape

 

 

Commenting, Paisley’s MSP, George Adam said:

 

This is a bombshell report that exposes just how bad a Tory Brexit could get for rural Scotland.

 

“The food and drink industries are flourishing, and agriculture is an essential part to the local economy in Scotland – helping drive our tourism and hospitality industries as well as putting food on family tables.

 

“Theresa May’s reckless approach to negotiations risks enormous damage to our economy. It’s time that the Tories put the interests of the country ahead of their party squabbles – and committed to staying in the single market.”

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, Backs Huge Expansion Of Free Childcare

 

Childcare Spending To Double To £840 Million A Year

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, has welcomed the First Minister’s announcement that childcare spending will double to £840 million a year – signalling a huge expansion in free early learning and childcare provision across Scotland.

 

The move reaffirms the SNP Government’s commitment to making Scotland the best place in the world to grow up, and is part of efforts to nearly double free childcare entitlement to 1140 hours from August 2020 – and it is expected to save parents around £350 per child, per month.

 

The SNP Scottish Government has also taken positive action by providing the innovative baby box to all expectant parents in Scotland – as well as providing 100% business rates relief for all nursery premises.

 

 

Commenting, George said:

 

“This expansion of childcare and early learning will help transform young people’s lives in Paisley.

 

“We know that some parents continue to struggle with childcare costs to allow them to work – and this expansion will change that.

 

“Delivering 30 hours a week of free childcare for every three and four year old in Scotland, as well as eligible two year olds will give children across Paisley the very best start in life and play a vital role in our efforts to make Scotland the best place in the world to grow up.

 

“The fact that this announcement comes hot on the heels of the recently launched Scottish baby box and the decision to remove nursery premises from business rates altogether proves the SNP’s commitment to our young people in Paisley.

 

“The move will help parents back into work, as well as saving them around £350 per child, per month, on childcare costs. This doubling of our investment, from £420 million to £840 million every year by 2021-22 is exactly the kind of support and progressive action that the SNP Government continues to deliver for Scotland.”

 

Scottish Produce Must Be Protected In Future Trade Deals, Paisley’s MSP, Warns

Worrying Precedent As Gove Fails To Uphold Protected Food Names In EU Trade Deals

 

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam is demanding that the UK government protect Scottish produce by upholding the Protected Food Name scheme in all future trade deals.

 

This comes in response to the UK Government’s omission of Scottish products from the EU-Canada trade deal (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreements (CETA) and of key Scottish Protected Food Names in EU trade deals with Japan and Mexico.

 

SNP Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy and Connectivity Fergus Ewing has written to Michael Gove to seek assurances around the protection of UK food names in EU trade deals, without which our producers could be commercially disadvantaged. Fergus Ewing previously wrote to Gove’s predecessor, Andrew Leadsom, on the same issue but never received a response.

 Commenting, George said:

 

“The Tories have repeatedly failed to stand up for Scotland’s interests throughout this whole Brexit process.

“The EU Protected Food Name scheme has safeguarded high quality Scottish products such as Scottish salmon and Traditional Ayrshire Dunlop cheese from cheap knock-offs, but Michael Gove seems all too willing to take this protection away from Scottish producers and open the floodgates to cheaper products appearing on our supermarket shelves from overseas.

“We cannot gamble with Scotland’s £14 billion food and drink sector, where provenance of product is paramount, and allow cheaper imitations to undercut our first class, wholesome produce.

“The UK government must meaningfully engage with the devolved governments to ensure that their interests are protected. We cannot let Westminster’s Brexit shambles leave Scottish producers high and dry in the global trading marketplace.”

 

Dental Register Filling Up Across Greater Glasgow & Clyde

 

Paisleys MSP, George Adam has welcomed the news that that dental registrations across Greater Glasgow and Clyde have increased in the last year, following new statistics from ISD Scotland.

 

The number of adults registered with dentists in Greater Glasgow and Clyde is up to 968,975, climbing from 939,837 – part of a national rise from 3,880,815 in 2015/16 to 4,004,645 in 2016/17.

The number of children registered across Greater Glasgow & Clyde also rose from 218,972 to 220,566 in the last year.

The number of adults registered with an NHS dentist across Scotland is at 91.1%, up from 45.6% since the SNP came to power.

The number of children registered has also increased from 66.6% under Labour to 94.1% under the SNP.

 

The total number of registered dental patients in Scotland is now at 4,975,850 – and the Scottish Government continues to take action to improve dental health across Scotland, including through the new Oral Health Improvement Plan and an investment of over £400 million in NHS dentists in the community. George has encouraged those who are not currently registered to sign up with their local dentist.

 

Commenting, George said:russell institute

 

“This is welcome news for Greater Glasgow & Clyde and shows that efforts to increase the number of people receiving regular dental check-ups is paying off, with 968,975 adults and 220,566 children now registered across Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

 

“It is a huge boost to see more and more people using the excellent dental services that we have in Greater Glasgow & Clyde– and by doing so we are able to prevent potentially more damaging and costly treatments in future.

 

“Those that aren’t registered should sign up with their local dental practice to get the dental treatment now and in the years to come.

 

“The SNP has a strong record on dental and oral health – increasing the number of adults registered with an NHS dentist in Scotland from 45.6% under Labour to 91.1% now, and the number of children registered has grown by 27.5% under the SNP.

 

“Scottish Government funding and commitments have been a key driver of these improvements, which is why we now have nearly 5 million registered dental patients across the country. The new Oral Health Improvement Plan will only boost this further still.

 

“Programmes such as ChildSmile have proven effective in getting children the dental treatment that they need – and with more adults registering with practices across Scotland, the SNP is making sure there is plenty to smile about across Scotland.”

Call For Bus Users In Paisley To Give Their Views On Bus Services And Smart Ticketing

Paisley’s MSP, George Adam, has encouraged bus users across Paisley to get involved in two new public consultations that will help shape the future of bus services and smart ticketing in Scotland.

George in Paisley Town Centre

Transport Scotland will conduct a number of events and stakeholder workshops to encourage participation in these consultations before they close on 5th December.

Commenting, George said:

“Although the number of bus users is falling, millions still use buses across Scotland every day, including in Paisley.

“Transport Scotland’s two new consultations offer the public and stakeholders in Paisley an important opportunity to have their say on how best to improve Scotland’s bus services.

“In order to develop an effective, joint up, Scotland-wide smart ticketing and payment service, it is important that as many transport operators, public bodies and users as possible are consulted.”