MSP notes Catalonian ‘siren call’ at Council of Europe plenary
Catalonian self-determination was raised this week as MSP for Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse, Christina McKelvie, called upon the Council of Europe to take mediated action in the Catalonian dispute.
The Council of Europe, the European institute for local and regional assemblies, met this week in Strasbourg for their annual plenary. Christina, The Scottish Parliament delegate to the Council of Europe, debated within the plenary session regarding the ongoing situation in Catalonia.
Commenting in the debate, Christina said:
“Freedom, democracy and human rights are the fundamental principles of this Council of Europe.
“The threats to suspend Catalan autonomy is a ‘siren call’ for all of those who believe in regional and devolved government.
The SNP MSP also went further to condemn the arrest of President of Omnium Cultural, Jordi Cuixart, and the President of the Assemblea Nacional Catalana, Jordi Sánchez, detained by the Spanish Government on charges of sedation.
“I do not think I can recall a time when a nation of this European Union would take political prisoners. The arrest of peaceful citizen and political leaders is abhorrent and undermines our European values”.
“I agree wholeheartedly with Amnesty International and reiterate their call to release both Jordi Cuixart and Jordi Sánchez”.
“I call on this Council of Europe to stand up - as a guarantor of human rights – to facilitate dialogue between the Spanish and Catalan Governments in order to achieve a settlement that is peaceful for all.”
SPENDING TO DOUBLE TO £840 MILLION A YEAR
SNP MSP for Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse, Christina McKelvie 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, local SNP MSP Christina McKelvie said:
“This expansion of childcare and early learning will help transform young people’s lives throughout my constituency.
“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 South Lanarkshire 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.
“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.”
MSP donates charitable cheque to local charity
Lanarkshire based charity, The Miracle Foundation, were the recipients of a £100 cash windfall bonus thanks to PA Advocacy and local MSP, Christina McKelvie.
PA Advocacy, the Scottish based social marketing and research experts, conducted their annual MSP survey, with Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse MSP, Christina McKelvie, taking part in the survey.
The survey offered Christina a charitable cheque for her participation, which she was delighted to hand over to the Lanarkshire charity, The Miracle Foundation. The cheque donation comes after Christina met with charity co-founders, Mariam and Urfan Tariq.
Specialising upon poverty alleviation, the charity work with patrons to offer bereavement support and project work.
Commenting on the donation, Christina McKelvie said:
“After meeting with Mariam and Urfan and hearing all about the vital work the Miracle Foundation achieve, it was a no-brainer that if I could help in any way, I should.
“As part of my ongoing work with PA Advocacy and their annual MSP survey, I was delighted to hand over this cheque.
“Through their bereavement services and their community work, the Miracle Foundation are a vital network of support for those who need it most and I’m delighted this donation will go towards continuing that inspiring work”.
Mariam and Urfan Tariq, Co-founders of the Miracle Foundation commented:
“The Miracle Foundation wish to set about real change in Lanarkshire through our bereavement support group.
“We also wish to help refugee children and families suffering from trauma and bereavement who have settled in Lanarkshire.
“We would like to thank MSP Christina Mckelvie for her kind donation and continual support.”