THIS week I was proud to launch the Glasgow Greens manifesto with an incredible group of fellow candidates.

Called A Greener Glasgow is a Fairer Glasgow, it’s a comprehensive plan for delivering climate action and social justice in Glasgow.

Its opening sentence sets the context: we are in a climate emergency.
Glasgow’s net zero target for 2030 must be central to everything we do in the years ahead.

The SNP administration is keen to talk up increased ambition too, but it’s worth remembering they voted against this – not once, but twice – when Greens urged more in the wake of the landmark IPCC report.

The only reason they shifted position was because the wider Green movement made change unstoppable. Having secured the target, our focus now must be on urgent action.

We welcomed the world to Glasgow for COP26 hoping for that. The leaders of the richest nations failed us – but the people of Glasgow didn’t, turning up in thousands to protest, and organising for change in their local communities. Greens will deliver on their demands for climate action and social justice.

A Greener and Fairer Glasgow will also mean responding to the cost of living crisis, which is being felt in homes right across this city.

We will stand by communities and help them through this crisis. That includes Glasgow’s foster and kinship carers. They’ve had their children’s allowances frozen for a decade, under both Labour and SNP administrations. That is a 24% cut in real terms, when costs are soaring. Carers are worried that they simply can’t afford to keep going. Greens secured agreement to end the freeze for the lowest paid carers, but that’s not enough. We will restore inflation-linked increases, introduce a system of respite support, and recognise carers’ rights to trade union representation.

Recovery in our communities also requires local venues like libraries and community centres to be reopened, and stay open. Greens were the first to raise the cash crisis affecting Glasgow Life, and it was our action to reverse more than £4m worth of cuts to their funding, that has meant all libraries could reopen earlier this year.

We will commit to protecting library funding for the full council term and we will not change core library services in our communities without full local consultation.

But we will also act to protect them sustainably into the future. Greens opposed the creation of Glasgow Life as an arms length charity more than 15 years ago, and the pandemic has exposed flaws in its funding model. It should not have to sell concert tickets or gym memberships in order to open libraries.

That’s why we will consult on options to bring some or all of these services back in house, and we will put communities and workers at the heart of this.
From the climate emergency to the cost of living crisis and the future of local venues, Greens are already providing leadership on the big issues this city faces.

Our ambition is to elect more Green councillors, right across the city, so we can build on that record.

Whatever the outcome on May 5, every Green councillor elected will work flat out to deliver our manifesto. By doing grown-up politics, and rejecting needless tribalism, Greens will get results.