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  • Writer's pictureKenneth Gibson MSP

Widespread Support for SNP Programme for Government

STAKEHOLDERS BACK PLANS FOR A STRONGER, GREENER AND FAIRER FUTURE The SNP’s Programme for Government has been supported by voices from across Scottish industry and society. Commenting on the ambitious programme, Kenneth Gibson MSP said: "The Covid-19 pandemic has hugely impacted on Scotland’s health, economy and our way of life. However, we now have an opportunity not simply to go back to how things were, but to directly address many of the deep-seated challenges our country faces. "This Programme for Government takes that opportunity, and is based on a strong belief that our recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic must not be business as usual. "Creating new, good, green jobs, promoting health and wellbeing - including taking vital steps towards a National Care Service - and making Scotland the best place to grow up, are central to this Programme for Government. "We must use this moment to make significant advances to deliver the fairer, greener, more prosperous Scotland we all want to see." A wide range of stakeholders have offered their support for the SNP’s legislative programme for 2020/21, including:

New jobs, green jobs & good jobs Matt Crilly - President, National Union of Students Scotland:

“I am delighted to see a £60 million Youth Guarantee that will ensure every young person aged between 16 and 24 will be guaranteed an opportunity at university or college, an apprenticeship programme, employment including work experience, or participating in a formal volunteering programme. It is great news that this will be backed by new additional funding for apprenticeships and the new Job Start Grant.”

Robin Blacklock - Chair, Scottish Property Federation:

“We support the focus on a robust and resilient wellbeing economy with additional support for jobs, infrastructure investment and a transition to a greener Scotland.”

Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Scotland:

“Great to see job creation and training at the heart of today's Programme for Government. We know that tackling unemployment and filling skills gaps will be crucial for rebuilding the Scottish economy and planning for the future workforce.”

James Withers - CEO, Scotland Food & Drink:

“Important and pleased to see the work of @scotfooddrink Partnership on Covid recovery in today’s #ScotPfG. Much to do now to drive a smart recovery and get braced for Brexit.”

Barnado’s Scotland:

“We very much welcome this commitment to help young people in to #Employment, #Training or #education we look forward to working with @scotgoveconomy& supporting the implementation of the Scottish Youth Guarantee.”

Ruth Taylor, NFU Scotland Climate Change Policy Manager:

“We welcome announcements in today’s Programme for Government that will help Scottish agriculture respond to the climate emergency and support a green recovery, including continued development of Agricultural Transformation Programme and capital grant funding.”

Andrew McRae - Policy Chair, Federation of Small Businesses Scotland:

“It will be easy for the Scottish small business community to get behind many of the measures that the FM outlined today. For example, for years FSB has talked to the need to develop resilient local economies with smaller firms at their heart. A good way to do this is to increase the share of public contracts that smaller firms win, especially those attached to any decarbonisation programmes.

“It also makes sense to increase the amount of economic activity in our towns and cities during the day, so the development of local work hubs, or more co-working in spaces, in local communities could pay dividends. The First Minister also put jobs at the top of her government’s agenda. That’s absolutely the right move, though every initiative needs to have small businesses at its core.”

Hannah Smith - CEO, Institution of Civil Engineers Scotland:

“The importance of infrastructure is reiterated throughout the PfG and the commitment to increase Scotland’s annual infrastructure investment until it is £1.5billion higher by the end of the next Parliament is welcome. We now eagerly await the forthcoming Infrastructure Investment Plan. A post-Covid infrastructure landscape which is green, digital and inclusive is a vision all in our sector have.”

Ewan McDonald-Russell - Head of Policy, Scottish Retail Consortium:

“Obviously not the biggest thing in today's @scotgov #PFG but it is positive to see a renewed commitment to a #retail strategy.”

Construction Scotland Innovation Centre:

“Great to see Scottish #timber, #offsite, R&D, #digital, #ZeroCarbon and a #construction accord featured in the #ScotPfG published today. Look forward working with Government and industry to drive #innovation.”

Alistair Ross - Head of Public Policy (Scotland) - Association of British Insurers:

“The announcement of an extra £150 million over five years for flood risk management on top of the Scottish Government’s existing £42 million a year for local authorities is welcome news from the First Minister. This investment in infrastructure can improve resilience to flooding, and form an important part of Scotland’s adaptation to climate change.”

Scottish Council of Development & Industry (SCDI):

“We welcome @scotgov commitment in today's #ScotPfG to expand our @ProdClubScot pilots nationwide. It'll help us drive business innovation and growth through collaboration and peer-to-peer learning across the Highlands, the North East and the South.”

Lifelong health & wellbeing Dr Donald Macaskill, Chief Executive of Scottish Care:

“I welcome the Independent Review of Care announced today and hope it will explore all options to at last give Scotland a properly resourced #socialcare service with choice and individual human rights at its heart. The #caresector is eager for the debate and to work for change.”

Frankie Toner, Policy & Public Affairs Manager, British Lung Foundation:

“Interesting to see what plans @scotgov will have for restricting the advertisement and promotion of e-cigarettes and legislation on e-cigarettes restrictions. #ScotPfG we @lungscotland look forward to being involved.”

Joseph Carter, Head of Devolved Nations, Asthma UK:

“Really pleased with the #ScotPfG . The Respiratory Care Action Plan referenced and given the importance it needs and an extra £500 million for #ActiveTravel . It’s been a great day!”

Louise Hunter - Chief Executive, Visibility Scot: “#ScotPfG

“Commitment to eye care reform with a focus on community eye care is v positive news. Lots of work has already been done to create blueprint for accessible care based on the principles of health and social care integration.”

Nathan Sparling - Chief Executive, HIV Scotland:

“Good to see the #ScotPfG commit to the Recovery Framework for Sexual Health and Blood Borne Viruses. The current Framework ends soon, and it is vital we don't lose track. Hopeful we can argue for a post-election commitment to zero new HIV transmissions."

MND Scotland:

“@NicolaSturgeon has outlined the "first step" towards the creation of a National Care Service in today's Programme for Government. We welcome this announcement and we look forward to working with @scotgov to improve care for people affected by motor neurone disease. #PFG

Mark O’Donnell - CEO, Royal Blind:

“We welcome vision/investment for community eyecare @NicolaSturgeon @scotgov #ScotPfG National community-based low vision service key to reduce care variation, enable faster diagnosis & support. Sight loss projections re ageing population are sobering. This is an important start.”

Emma Pinchbeck, Chief Executive, Energy UK:

“We welcome the Scottish Government’s focus on making our homes fit for a low carbon future - essential to reaching the 2045 Net Zero target. Installing energy efficiency measures and low carbon heating systems will create thousands of new skilled jobs and opportunities right across the country.

“As the Programme sets out, a Green Recovery can deliver widespread economic as well as environmental benefits. We are pleased to see the support for new energy technologies like low carbon hydrogen, which will play a crucial role in decarbonising the whole economy - and create jobs in Scotland and across the UK.”

Promoting equality & helping young people grasp their potential

Bruce Adamson, Children and Young People's Commissioner Scotland:

“Incorporation of Flag of United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child is the most important thing we can do to protect children’s human rights. Amazing to hear @scotgov announce the legislation which will take a maximalist approach. Huge credit to all #HumanRightsDefenders who fought for it!”

The Scottish Youth Parliament:

“We welcome the introduction of a Bill to incorporate #UNCRC into Scots law. Today's announcement is a significant moment in realising our shared vision of ensuring all children & young people growing up in Scotland have their human rights respected, protected and fulfilled.”

Jo Derrick - CEO, Staf (Scottish Throughcare and Aftercare Forum):

“Great to hear @NicolaSturgeon confirm that the UNCRC will be incorporated into Scots law by the end of this Parliament! @StafScot ready to help deliver the realisation of all children's rights. #ScotPfG #PfG

WWF Scotland:

“Good to see an increase in funding to make our homes more energy efficient, investment in walking and cycling and skills retraining that will all help rebuild the economy in #ScotPfG. However it’s important to remember we are still facing #climate and #nature emergencies.”

Stuart Goodall, Chief Executive of Confor [Confederation of Forest Industries]:

“The announcement of significant extra funding for forestry in today’s Programme for Government is great news for our environment and our economy.”

Amnesty Scotland:

“Excellent news that we’ll see a Bill incorporating the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in Scotland! We fully back the amazing work by the children and yp’s sector in Scotland to get us here! And of course an incredible group of young human rights defenders!!” YouthLink Scotland:

“We are delighted to hear @scotgov announce plans for a UNCRC Incorporation Bill by the end of this parliament, as part of today's #PfG.”

Who Cares? Scotland:

“Today’s #PfG brings us a step closer to children’s human rights being fully protected in Scots law, with a Bill to incorporate the UNCRC to be introduced soon to @ScotParl We’re proud to offer our support! #UNCRCScotland

Children in Scotland:

“We're delighted by @scotgov announcement that the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child will be incorporated into Scots law by the end of this @ScotParl term.This will ensure that the rights of cyp/families are built into all aspects of public life. #UNCRCScotland #ScotPfG

Dr Marsha Scott. CEO, Scottish Womens’ Aid:

“We are delighted to see [the Domestic Abuse Bill] in the #ScotPFG. We have called for EPOs for many years as they will make an immediate and significant difference for women and children experiencing #DomesticAbuse. We look forward to continued work with @scotgov and others on this going forwards."

Mhoraig Green - Social Justice Spokesperson, Citizens Advice Scotland:

"We're glad to see that the extended eviction notice periods for rent arrears will continue until March next year, giving tenants’ crucial time to get help and advice with their finances. We've also been calling for more cash in the hands of tenants to help catch up on arrears and pay rent, so the £3 million increase for Discretionary Housing Payments is welcome. We look forward to seeing short-term let regulations come into force next year and seeing the outcome of the review into purpose-built student accommodation."

Emma Ritch - Director, Engender:

“Women’s rights are human rights. Delighted to see such a strong commitment to the incorporation of CEDAW: the international women’s bill of rights. #ScotPfG"

Joseph Rowntree Foundation:

“Today @scotgov announced their new Programme for Government. At JRF, we welcome many of the elements including the Youth Guarantee, a new Tenant Hardship Loan Fund and digital inclusion for low-income families.”

Climate Emergency Response Group:

“We are pleased to see the government’s commitment to a fairer, greener future in its response to the global pandemic. We welcome the decision to invest in our buildings, to make them warmer, healthier and zero emissions by 2040.

"We also welcome the investment in ‘20 minute neighbourhoods’ - where people can meet their needs within a 20 minute walk of their home – making our cities and towns greener and more liveable. The commitment to a green jobs fund and green apprenticeships will help create and sustain jobs to deliver these goals.”

BEMIS Scotland:

“Very welcome progress. Look forward to details and how this will respond to Scotland's specific participation in slavery, colonialism + empire. Our Caribbean, African, Pakistani, Indian, Irish and many other communities will be keen to have their voices heard and listened too.”

Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal of the University of Glasgow, on investment in a new BAME leadership project:

“I am delighted that this major new project to support BAME leadership will be taken forward at University of Glasgow. As a university we are determined to do everything we can to support racial justice and equality, within our institution and in wider society. The new programme announced today will be a major step forward”.

John Lauder, Deputy CEO - Sustrans UK:

“I'm delighted @scotgov has committed to five years spending on active travel at a minimum £100M annually. Secure, long term funding & improved match funding unlocks the potential of big scale schemes and are developments we have recommended for years. #PFG.

“Great to see continued commitment to walking, cycling and wheeling in today's #ScotPFG announcement. We welcome the government's commitment to making 20 minute neighbourhoods a reality across Scotland.”

Scottish Land Commissioner:

“We welcome @scotgov Programme for Government and we are excited to continue our work ensuring land is factored into #Scotland’s economic recovery”

Claire Mack - CEO, Scottish Renewables:

“The First Minister’s declaration of a £100 million Green Jobs Fund and a £25 million National Transition Training Fund are significant steps forward not just for our industry - which will require a large number of skilled employees as we work towards our net-zero target - but also for all those people whose careers are not compatible with that target.

“Scottish Renewables has worked hard with politicians from all parties over the past four months to make the case that renewable energy should be at the very heart of a green recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. We are pleased that our suggestion of funding to refocus careers and businesses on the provision of green skills to support Scotland’s transition to net-zero has found a place in this Programme for Government, and look forward to working with the Scottish Government as it further develops its plans in the coming months. “In particular, it is important that Scotland’s skills and enterprise agencies and skills providers work in tandem with industry to ensure that skills which are delivered are those which are required. We are also keen that the development of a Renewable Energy Centre of Excellence takes place in Scotland to provide a physical base for the reshaping of our economy in the decades leading to the 2045 net-zero target.”

Dr Richard Dixon, Director, Friends of the Earth Scotland:

“Today’s new focus on creating much needed green jobs is welcome progress from the Scottish Government, but it needs to be followed with rapid action to ensure it becomes more than rhetoric.

“The Scottish Government has shown that they know that the future must be greener, safer and fairer but the economic and climate crises demands that we start that work today. Long term commitments to creating green jobs in areas like energy efficiency are really good news, but we should not wait until the next Parliament to make them a reality.

“By taking concrete steps in the coming months to deliver their Green Jobs commitment, the Government will help ensure that we have warmer homes, reductions in climate pollution and new jobs across the country.”

RSPB Scotland:

“RSPB Scotland welcomes the green ambition in today's programme for government announcement and focus on climate and green jobs.”

Paths for All:

“We're pleased to see this commitment in #ScotPfG. Increasing #ActiveTravel will not only reduce our carbon footprint, but will help us look after our physical, mental and social health.”

The Association for Decentralised Energy: “Fantastic to see the Heat Networks Bill being progressed as part of @scotgov's #ScotPfG. Not only will this help lower the carbon footprint of our buildings, but also help make homes more efficient and comfortable for consumers.”

Barnardo’s Scotland:

“We are delighted to welcome today's Programme for Government announcement of a forthcoming Bill to incorporate the #UNCRC. We urge all MSPs to support the Bill and bring us one step closer to the realisation of children's rights in Scotland.”

Cycling Scotland:

“Five years funding certainty in #ScotPfG is welcome to support cycling, walking & wheeling. We need rapid decarbonisation of transport to tackle the #ClimateEmergency.”

Aiofe Behan - Director, Soil Association Scotland:

“Good to see a commitment to a Local Food Strategy for Scotland - we've seen huge opportunities emerge over the past six months which could transform local food systems - hope this strategy helps to learn, scale & embed. #scotpfg

Scottish Commission for People with a Learning Disability:

“The Scottish Government has published its Programme for Government. We welcome the commitment to equality and human rights throughout and in particular to actively consider the incorporation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Disabled People.”

John Sparkes - CEO, Crisis:

“Good to see ongoing commitment of @ScotGovFairer to #endinghomelessnesstogether and the #harsag recommendations in today's #ScotPfG.”


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