‘Bedroom Tax’ Attacked in Parliament


Westminster plans to remove housing benefit from anyone who has an extra bedroom has been attacked in Parliament.  Tory and Libdem plans to charge those least able to afford it have been branded ‘crazy’ by Paisley’s MSP George Adam.  This ‘Tax’ will see family homes being targeted if some of the family has moved out leaving an extra bedroom.  Plans include removing 14% of housing benefit from those with one extra bedroom, to 25% removal for those with two or more rooms.


 Speaking on the plans, George said:


 ‘I cannot underline the total ineptitude of these proposals.  Let’s take one example, if someone is on housing benefit it means they are not financially well off.  Then they are told to pay up for an extra room if they have one.  If they cannot afford this will local authorities throw them out?


 ‘This means they will be classed as homeless, with local authorities responsible to rehouse them.  So they waste money throwing them out, then having the responsibility to rehouse them.


 ‘No, that isn’t the end of it.  In Renfrewshire there are around 2,000 tenants that will be affected, with only 114 one bedroom homes available from the council.  I think everyone in their right mind agrees that 2,000 in to 114 does not go.  The downsizing is just not going to work.


 ‘This would sound like the script from a Carry On film if it were not so serious.


 ‘This is a direct attempt to target and punish those least able to defend themselves. 


 ‘This is Mr Cameron’s idea of the ‘Big Society’.


 ‘This is what we get with Westminster while Nicola Sturgeon, Deputy First Minister has promised to banish the  ‘Bedroom Tax’ in an independent Scotland.  Better Together?  Aye right.’


MP Posted Missing

George outside the old Arnotts BuildingPaisley’s MSP George Adam has called on Douglas Alexander to explain himself for not voting, or even making himself available to vote at the third reading of the Pensions Bill at Westminster last night.  This meant the Tory plans to change Public Sector Pensions passed through Westminster, after threats to cut the Scottish Budget.

 Speaking on the news, George said:

 ‘Where is this promise to ‘fight’ and ‘stand up’ to the Tories at Westminster we are always promised by Labour?  Our ‘local Labour’ representative was again missing in action when Scotland’s public sector workers are having their pensions attacked, including the pensionable age.

 ‘It was claimed at the Scottish Parliament last week, where I have attended every vote, that Labour had ‘deep concerns’ about the changes.  Looks like they were so ‘deep’ they forgot their way to the chamber to actually oppose the measures.

 ‘These changes have nothing to do with deficit reduction, they are an ideological attack on the public sector by the Tories.  If this measure was under the remit of the Scottish Parliament you can be sure that I would have been there, representing my constituents, no excuses.

 ‘This is an example of the types of decisions that are made at Westminster and our representative doesn’t bother to vote against such measures.  This is simply not good enough.’


Voting at Westminster (Hansard);

George Votes in Historic Yes Vote

George says Yes to IndependenceGeorge Adam, Paisley’s Member of the Scottish Parliament, last week [31/05/2012] voted for First Minister Alex Salmond’s parliamentary motion which stated, “That the Parliament agrees that Scotland should be an independent country; sees it as the responsibility of this generation to hand over a better country to the next generation than the one inherited, and believes that it is vital for the people of Scotland to take full responsibility for the decisions about the future of Scotland.”

This was the first time that Holyrood has indicated its support for Scotland becoming an independent country, and commenting after the vote George said:

‘This was a historic day in the parliament and indeed in Scotland. This is the first time that elected member’s in Scotland have voted in favour of Scotland becoming and independent nation. Indeed, it is not the elected members who will decide whether or not we become independent, but the people of Scotland; however, as a life long supporter of independence for Scotland, this was a very symbolic day for myself and my colleagues.

‘Even just a few years ago, the thought of such a vote would have been unimaginable. Now the unimaginable has arrived, and can act as a starting point, on top of last weeks Yes Campaign launch, on the journey to Scotland taking her seat alongside the world other independent nations once again.

‘The task ahead is great, but it is a task which we all should relish being part of. Myself and the rest of my independence supporting MSP colleagues are in a fortunate position during this historic time, sitting in a parliament which looks to take the biggest step in over 300 years, however, every single person in Scotland is fortunate also; they hold the opportunity in their hands to make Scotland independent once more.

George welcomes referendum announcement

George and AlexGeorge Adam, Paisley’s Member of the Scottish Parliament, has welcomed the announcement by the Scottish Government that the independence referendum will be held in the Autumn of 2014 and urged people Paisley to join the debate.
George said:

“The people of Paisley will have the exciting opportunity to vote in a referendum on Scotland’s future in 2014.

“This is a major opportunity to ensure that that the decisions about Scotland are taken by the people of Scotland and I hope everyone will take part.

“During this week, we have seen the Tories, the Lib-Dems and Labour all try to muscle in on the referendum, so I welcome the Scottish Government’s commitment to a referendum made in Scotland by the Scottish people and Scottish Parliament.

“It is also right that 16 and 17 year olds should be allowed to vote in the referendum. It is notable that the Labour Party both north and south of the border are questioning this position, while numerous Labour MP’s and MSP’s have signed up to support lowering the voting age to 16, via the Vote 16 petition. The SNP has long believed that people who are entitled by law to work full time, get married and pay taxes should have a say in how their country is run and in the future of that country.

“It is absolutely vital therefore that our 16 and 17 year olds have a say in the biggest single decision Scotland will have taken in 300 years. Our young people are our future; they have a right to express their view at the ballot box.

“Above all, this is a matter for Scotland. The people gave the SNP a mandate to run this referendum. The Tories, Lib-Dems and Labour would do well to come to terms with that fact and respect the people’s decision.”

Link to Vote 16 petition signed by Labour MP’s and MSP’s

16 and 17 year olds should have the right to vote, says George

George next to Paisley's River CartGeorge Adam, Paisley’s Member of the Scottish Parliament, today [26/01/12] spoke on the issue of 16 and 17 year olds getting the right to vote. Speaking during Themed Questions on Education and Lifelong Learning, George made the point that if 16 and 17 year old are being taught about civic Scotland, then they should be allowed to take part in it and get the chance to vote.

After the themed questions, George said, “I make no apologies for putting my long held belief forward that 16 and 17 year olds should get to vote. While Labour, Tory and Lib Dem MSPs and indeed MPs chose to talk down this belief, I must remind them that in the not so distant past, many of them have signed up to and supported the campaign, Vote16.

‘Debate will rage over the independence referendum over the coming months and years, but the date is set; it’s starting. So instead of scaremongering, I call upon anti-independence politicians to take some of their own advice and work with the Scottish Government in lowering the voting age to 16. Many of them have supported it in the past; why do they not seem to support it now?

‘I would like to challenge Paisley, indeed, Scotland’s young people, to get involved in the referendum consultation: Your Scotland, Your Referendum, and make your views heard. I believe that 16 and 17 years old should have the vote and if you do too, get involved and let your local politicians know. It’s your future; be part of better.

Link to Names of the Politicians who have supported the Vote16 campaign

Link to online consultation