Bob Banner

Maryhill Job CentreNew DWP Minister has chance to change course

The SNP has made a last-ditch call for the Tories to halt their plans to close job centres across Scotland – with the Maryhill site set to shut its doors for the final time on Friday.

The chaos of Theresa May's bungled cabinet reshuffle has led to Esther McVey becoming the new DWP Secretary and Alok Sharma become Minister for Employment – and cross-party representatives across Glasgow have united to call on the new Ministers to halt the planned cuts of their predecessors with a joint letter to Mr Sharma.

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Christmas Card 2017

Artwork for Bob's 2017 Christmas card was produced vy Samuel Ogbeiwi, from Primary 4 at St Blane's Primary School.

Additional images were submitted by Primary 7/6 at Elmvale Primary School, only a couple of which could be used on the final card. The other submissions are posted below.

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Figures show English councils could lose 250,000 homes by 2020

A staggering 250,000 homes could be lost by English councils between 2012 and 2020 under right to buy, the UK government have revealed – showing how important it was for the SNP to end the council housing sell-off in Scotland.

The SNP abolished Right to Buy in Scotland in 2016 in order to protect existing council-owned housing stock from being sold off. The Tories have taken a different approach in England – which saw 18,110 social houses sold under Right to Buy this year. Meanwhile, the Scottish Government has committed to building 50,000 affordable homes in Scotland by the end of this Parliament.

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Crucial support disappearing as Tory austerity continues to hit most vulnerable

Tory government cuts are robbing Scotland's councils homelessness services of at least £20 million a year, it has emerged – showing once again the Tories' callous approach to society's most vulnerable people.

The cuts were highlighted in COSLA's response to the Local Government and Communities Committee's call for evidence on Homelessness, and will have a devastating impact on homelessness services across Scotland – with COSLA's evidence suggesting that the shortfall in funding is likely to be "considerably higher" than the predicted £20 million.

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I have been working with Patrick Grady MP and Cllr Kenny McLean to sustain the provision of the M4 service through Kelvindale. The current service has been making heavy losses.

We met with Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) and they promised to assess the route for potential SPT support (effectively a subsidy). I've now had a response (below) and the M4 service will continue on a subsidised basis, with a slightly modified timetable. Whilst this modification is hardly ideal, it at least protects the M4 service which otherwise would have stopped permanently on 19 August 2017.

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On Friday 12th of May, along with Patrick Grady, I met with First Glasgow’s Paul Coupar to discuss the ongoing threat to the M4 bus service through Kelvindale. At that  meeting I outlined the findings of the significant parliamentary consultation that I have undertaken within the community in relation to bus services. I made it clear that the M4 service was particularly fragile because it had been detached from the previous 4A service, leaving Kelvindale exposed in terms of a commercially viable service.

Indeed unless part of a wider route, most sections of any bus service would not be financially viable as a stand-alone service. That is why my consultation focused on trying to reconnect Kelvindale to a wider route. I also stressed the various points made in the consultation responses such as the hourly service, the start time of the M4 service not being early enough, reliability issues and mirroring the route / timetable of the 94 bus too closely.

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Bob Doris, SNP MSP for Maryhill and Springburn, is dismayed at news from First Glasgow that they are to axe the M4 bus route serving Kelvindale.

First Glasgow had agreed to trial this route on a six month basis following previous representations from Bob, but have now decided to axe it with no consultation, only four months into the trial, despite statistics provided by First indicating a 4% increase in passenger numbers over the previous 10 weeks.

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Bob Doris, as convenor of the Scottish Parliament's Local Government and Communities Committee, took the committee on a visit to organisations supporting homeless women in Glasgow. The committee visited both Govanhill Women's Service and the Simon Community, and the discussions will help in the committee's consideration of policy in this area.

The visit is reported in the Evening Times.

Jobcentre MaryhillTories selling out Scotland yet again

The Scottish Government is to lead a debate on the recently announced closures of job centres across Scotland – with SNP members set to condemn the callous Tory government cuts that are set to hit some of Scotland’s poorest communities.

The proposed closures, which are going ahead without prior consultation as part of an ideologically-motivated campaign by the Tories, are set to have a deeply damaging impact on the most vulnerable people across Scotland – raising travel costs and making services less accessible.

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Promoted by Andrew Baddon on behalf of Bob Doris, both of 1346 Maryhill Road, Glasgow, G20 9DG