Nicola Sturgeon’s leadership record ‘failing’ says Farage
The news comes as protests take place outside Nicola Sturgeon’s residence following months of chaos as campaigners from SLEF, the RMT, TSSA, and Unite have all been in dispute with Abellio over pay and a failure by the company to recognise the huge contribution rail staff have made during the coronavirus pandemic.The four groups are now warning Nicola Sturgeon she has six months to save ScotRail.
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Protesters gathered outside the First Minister’s home (Image: Getty Images)
The union is now calling on the government to reject a plan to cut over 100,000 services a year, or 300 services a day.
In a joint statement, the four unions said they are in an “unprecedented situation” over Abellio’s “shambolic management”.
Further concerns have also been raised about a report commissioned by Professor Iain Docherty and provisions in it about cutting services, jobs, and ticket services.
READ MORE: SNP MP refuses to accept Scotland’s ambulance crisis
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Trending KEY EVENTS Sturgeon ‘extremely concerned’ about rising energy prices 14:56 Boris would be a ‘numpty’ to let Scotland go, says SNP MP 13:30 SNP vaccine passports to be dragged to court 12:03 Scotland’s largest polluter announces £1 billion to reduce emissions 10:04 18 hours ago 19:03 Tara Fair SNP defends vaccine passports despite legal challenge The SNP has defended their decision to introduce vaccines passports despite a legal challenge being levelled against them.
A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: “We want to keep businesses open and trading over what may be one of the most difficult winter periods in history.
“Vaccine certification is in use in many countries, often with a much wider scope than planned in Scotland, and we believe they are an essential and proportionate measure to reduce the risk posed by coronavirus.
“We are working closely with stakeholders on the rollout of the certification scheme.
“Further details will be announced shortly.”
18 hours ago 18:37 Tara Fair ‘My concern is things will get worse and worse,’ says Tory MSP Tory MSP Graham Simpson said: “With Cop26 just weeks away it beggars belief that the Scottish Government is happy to preside over massive cuts to rail services, despite this being a sustainable and low carbon form of transport.
“This will do nothing to make Scotland a net zero nation.”
“We are wholly opposed to these cuts.
“My concern is that they will just stay when ScotRail is nationalised and things will get worse and worse.”
19 hours ago 18:22 Tara Fair Relations with railways ‘at an all time low’, says Labour transport spokesman Labour transport spokesman Neil Bibby has claimed that industrial relations on Scotland’s railways were “at an all time low” and has demanded minister intervention to prevent an embarrassment at COP26.
Hitting out at reductions in rail services following the pandemic, Mr Bibby said recent proposals would see 300 services a day cut.
Mr Bibby added: “Greener government is impossible with a declining rail network – children watching Thomas And Friends could tell you that.”
19 hours ago 17:51 Tara Fair Rail strike during COP26 would be international humiliation for Scotland Holyrood ministers have been warned they face international humiliation if industrial disputes on the railways are not resolved by the time world leaders descend on Glasgow for the global Cop26 climate change summit.
The trade union action has seen train services on Sundays massively reduced.
19 hours ago 17:30 Tara Fair Scottish Tory chief whip writes to Sturgeon demanding action on ministerial breach Scottish Tory chief whip Stephen Kerr has written to First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, urging her to step in after her health minister seemed to break the ministerial code by leaking an announcement to the press.
Mr Kerr wrote in his letter: “Yesterday, in his statement to Scottish Parliament, it was confirmed by the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care that he leaked the content of his statement to the Daily Record ahead of delivery to parliament.
“This included multiple important announcements of government policy on tackling the current ambulance crisis.
“The Ministerial Code exists to ensure that those in the highest offices of Scotland’s public sector are held to an appropriately high standard.
“I know you value its contents greatly.
“I am therefore writing to you seeking your commitment to investigate this breach and to outline what measures will be taken in response to any possible outcome of such an investigation.”
20 hours ago 17:08 Tara Fair Tories furious over Humza Yousaf’s ministerial code ‘breach’ The Scottish Tories have urged Nicola Sturgeon to investigate whether her Health Secretary, Hamza Yousaf, broke the ministerial code by briefing the media ahead of a key announcement.
Mr Yousaf announced on Tuesday plans for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service and more than 100 military personnel to support the ambulance service.
The emergency health service is which is currently under acute pressure in Scotland causing severe waits for patients of up to 40 hours.
However, details of the announcement appeared in the Daily Record hours before the statement was made.
The ministerial code states that announcement should be made to parliament when Holyrood is in session.
20 hours ago 16:48 Tara Fair Sturgeon refuses to acknowledge concerns over vaccine passports Nicola Sturgeon has refused to acknowledge concerns about her proposed vaccine passports by arguing they will not be deployed as extensively as in some other countries.
Ms Sturgeon said: “A vaccine certification scheme is not about making life difficult for businesses, it’s about trying to use a proportionate measure to keep transmission of the virus under control over the winter, so that we can keep businesses like nightclubs and big events open and operational rather than them facing potential closure again this winter as they faced last winter, so it’s about trying to keep the economy open.”
She also stressed that similar schemes “are operating already successfully in many countries across the world and actually on a much more extensive basis than we are proposing here for Scotland”.
20 hours ago 16:30 Tara Fair Energy price crisis ‘nothing to do’ with Scottish Government plans, claims Sturgeon Nicola Sturgeon has abdicated all responsibility for the issue of rocketing energy prices.
Asked whether she regrets that the Scottish Government has not set up a state-owned energy company, she said: “The issues around that are complex.
“We set out our intentions in the manifesto that we won the election on, the issue with energy prices is nothing to do with the Scottish Government’s plans for a publicly-owned energy company.”
21 hours ago 16:12 Tara Fair Sturgeon to chair meeting on rising energy prices today Nicola Sturgeon will today chair a meeting with the Scottish Government committee to discuss the issue of rocketing energy costs.
The energy price cap is set to rise by £139 a year (12 percent) to £1,277 for a typical gas and electricity customer from October 1.
The increase in bills comes at the same time as the UK Government’s “uplift” in Universal Credit, intended as a temporary measure during the coronavirus pandemic, ends on October 6.
Labour MP Angela Rayner has criticised the move that will “hit the pockets of working families by “cutting the income of a worker on £18,000 a year by over £1,100”.
The price rises come after the cost of gas on wholesale markets rocketed at unprecedented rates, up 70 percent since August and 250 percent since the beginning of the year, according to trade body Oil & Gas UK.
22 hours ago 14:56 Tara Fair Sturgeon ‘extremely concerned’ about rising energy prices Nicola Sturgeon has admitted she is “extremely concerned” about the rise in energy prices and its impact.
The First Minister will chair a meeting of the Scottish Government later today to discuss the issue which she has concerns about the “significant impact” it may have on domestic consumers.
Ms Sturgeon said she wants to ensure the Scottish Government is doing “everything it can to try to deal with the impact of what is a very worrying set of circumstances.”
23 hours ago 14:01 Francesca Edwards Covid passport legal active is ‘justified’, says Conservative spokesperson Conservative Covid-19 recovery spokesperson Murdo Fraser has argued that the legal challenge launched against Covid passports is a justified response to an “extreme, damaging and profoundly unfair scheme.”
The Tories, Labour and Liberal Democrats all voted against the measure in Holyrood.
Mr Fraser added that the NTIA had no choice but to take the government to court after the SNP “failed to engage in any kind of meaningful consultation” with businesses.
“This legal action is testament to the fact that many businesses will be disproportionately and unjustifiably harmed by the SNP’s current schemes.
“I urge the SNP Government to drop these plans now, before Scotland’s economic recovery is damaged even further.”
23 hours ago 13:30 Francesca Edwards Boris would be a ‘numpty’ to let Scotland go, says SNP MP SNP MP Michelle Thomson admitted it is unlikely there will be a referendum by 2023 and said Boris Johnson would be a “numpty” to let Scotland go.
Speaking at an event at Edinburgh’s Queen’s Hall she also said Scots would most likely vote no if a vote was held tomorrow due to a lack of “worked-through answers”.
Earlier this month Nicola Sturgeon revealed she wants to hold another referendum before the need of 2023, Covid permitting.
Ms Thomson said: “I don’t believe for a minute that Boris is going to give us a referendum.It’s not in his interest to do so.
“Scotland is so asset rich, he’d be a numpty to let us go.
She added: “My own personal view is that I think that the SNP needs to up the ante on that mandate – what a vote for the SNP means.
yesterday 12:54 Francesca Edwards Millions of Scottish families have ‘incomes slashed’ by ‘toxic combination’ SNP deputy Westminster leader Kirsten Oswald called on the government to “scrap Tory cuts to Universal Credit and introduce an emergency energy payment”.
She revealed that million of families in Scotland are seeing “incomes slashed” by a “toxic combination of Tory cuts, tax rises and the growing cost of Brexit.”
She added: ” “The UK Government slashing Universal Credit by £1,040, furlough is ending prematurely and a Tory tax hike will leave the majority of families hundreds of pounds worse off next year.Let’s be clear this is a Tory cost-of-living crisis and yet again lower and middle-income families will suffer the most.
“It is time to scrap Tory cuts to Universal Credit and to introduce an emergency energy payment for lower-income families so no one has to choose between heating and eating this winter.”
SNP deputy Westminster leader Kirsten Oswald during PMQ’s (Image: PA) yesterday 12:14 Francesca Edwards Sturgeon opens new aerospace centre Nicola Sturgeon has been busy this morning opening the new Aerospace Innovation Centre in Prestwick.
The First Minister said the centre will “help reduce aviation emissions” and create “highly skilled jobs”.
Currently, over 3,000 employees are based at the centre, more than 50 percent of Scotland’s aerospace workforce.
Great to open the new Aerospace Innovation Centre @SpiritAero in Prestwick this morning – its R&D work will help reduce aviation emissions, and create highly skilled jobs.
u2014 Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) September 22, 2021 yesterday 12:03 Francesca Edwards SNP vaccine passports to be dragged to court The SNP’s vaccine passport scheme is to be the subject of a legal battle, just days before it is due to come into force.
The Night Time Industries Association Scotland has instructed its legal team this morning to “commence proceedings” against the plans which involve proof of double vaccination to enter a nightclub or large event.
In a statement, the body said the scheme “raises serious issues” and added that the “deep-rooted problem” could have been avoided if the government has worked with the sector at an earlier stage.
Vaccine passports are due to come into effect in Scotland on October 1.
yesterday 11:20 Francesca Edwards Scotland hits ‘major milestone’ in Covid testing Scotland has passed a “major milestone” of more than 10 million PCR tests being carried out as Health Secretary, Humza Yousaf stressed the importance of testing.
Mr Yousaf said the milestone is a testament to the “hard work and dedication of our testing team across the country.”
He added: “Testing has a vital role to play as restrictions are phased out and we learn to live with the virus.
“It may be tempting to think, as vaccinations increase and cases drop, that testing will become less important.
“In fact, this will only make it more important to spot and prevent new outbreaks as cases emerge.We know from our experience just how quickly one outbreak can lead to another.
” The ability to quickly identify new outbreaks and put appropriate measures in place will remain at the heart of our strategy to help break chains of transmission.”
yesterday 10:21 Francesca Edwards Health Secretary doesn’t rule out Army setting up field hospitals Health Secretary Humza Yousaf has talked down suggestions that the Army could be used to set up a field hospital to help the NHS cope, but refused to rule it out.
Opposition politicians suggested the military might be better used in this way than to drive ambulances, which they will begin doing this weekend.
Mr Yousaf refused to rule out such a move, but stressed there would be difficulties.
He told BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme “we don’t have the workforce”.
He added: “And the Army don’t have a huge pool of doctors that are just sitting there not doing anything.
“In fact the full-time doctors are very much based in the NHS and then if they have to go to deployment in armed service they get permission from the NHS to go and join army personnel overseas.”
yesterday 10:04 Francesca Edwards Scotland’s largest polluter announces £1 billion to reduce emissions Scotland’s largest climate polluter Ineos will spend more than £1 billion to slash greenhouse emissions at its Grangemouth refinery.
The plan is for all businesses at the site to be powered by hydrogen, while capturing carbon monoxide.
Ineos aims to “deliver a reduction in excess of 60% in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 through a series of investments, partnerships, and innovative engineering”.
It also wants to achieve net-zero emissions by 2045.
yesterday 09:52 Francesca Edwards Biden ‘anxious’ to visit Glasgow in person
President Biden has admitted he is “anxious” to be in Glasgow in person next month to attend the COP26 international climate conference.
Speaking in the White House during a meeting on Tuesday with Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Mr Biden said: “As we look ahead to the UK hosting Cop26, which I’m really anxious to attend in Glasgow in November.
“We’re going to be there with bells on, as they say.”
The summit will run from October 31 to November 12.
yesterday 09:04 Francesca Edwards Sturgeon also facing pressure on ambulance service Nicola Sturgeon is also facing pressure after she admitted Scotland’s NHS is “facing crisis conditions”.
A number of reports indicate people are facing an extremely long wait for one to arrive.
Last week, Gerard Brown, 65 was found dead at his Glasgow home after it took 40 hours for paramedics to arrive.
Hundreds of soldiers will now be sent by the Minister of Defence to help drive Scottish ambulances and run mobile Covid testing units from this weekend.
Scotlands health minister, Humza Yousaf also announced £20 million will be invested into the ambulance service.
yesterday 08:48 Francesca Edwards Four unions joint statement in full The four unions have released a joint statement that reads: “We are telling Nicola Sturgeon that she has six months to save ScotRail.
“Abellio’s shambolic mismanagement threatens to leave our railways in crisis.
“We have the unprecedented situation where all four unions are in dispute with an employer that appears to have no idea how to run a railway.
“We fear that they will leave yet more damage in their wake as they depart the franchise.
“We want to see a publicly owned, clean, green, and affordable railway that is well staffed and meets the needs of our communities and the economy while helping to address the climate crisis.”.