Road vote is re­lief

Rutherglen Reformer - - Reformer View -

DearEdi­tor On Tues­day, Septem­ber 8, 2015 South La­nark­shire Coun­cil Plan­ning Com­mit­tee lis­tened in­dul­gently to spu­ri­ous rep­re­sen­ta­tions be­fore sen­si­bly ap­prov­ing the Cathkin Re­lief Road.

The fol­low­ing day, in Blair­beth Road a ve­hi­cle went out of con­trol, ca­reer­ing onto the pave­ment and com­pletely de­mol­ished the traf­fic lights at the (no longer pa­trolled) school cross­ing.

For­tu­nately no one was in­jured or killed. How­ever, the in­ci­dent is a timeous re­minder of the dan­gers and haz­ards that have threat­ened gen­er­a­tions of school­child­ren and it will be a re­lief to many par­ents and grand­par­ents that the lo­cal walk to school will be, at long last, a safe one.

Those few peo­ple who will be up­set by the loss of some shrubs, weeds and ca­nine lava­to­ries should con­sole them­selves that the larger com­mu­nity will ben­e­fit from much re­duced pol­lu­tion and more gen­eral health, safety and eco­nomic im­prove­ments. Char­lie Shaw Blair­beth Road

I fully agree with Bar­rie Cathie’s let­ter about park­ing in Green­hill Road.

I had to take my grand­son’s pram onto the road as I could not pass.

Also my sis­ter is in care in the flats next to the mosque. These flats have pri­vate res­i­dence park­ing due to dis­abil­i­ties, but peo­ple just ig­nore the signs, which causes prob­lems with doc­tors’ vis­it­ing.

A wee bit of re­spect and thought please. Peter McLaugh­lin via email

to only pro­vide trans­port for pupils re­ceiv­ing free school meals leav­ing no school bus for the other chil­dren.

Would SLC view it as ac­cept­able to ap­ply the same rea­son­ing in­side the school?

Mean­ing only those who qual­ify for free school meals would be pro­vided with lunch forc­ing other pupils to seek theirs out­with the school, in all weath­ers, po­ten­tially at a risk to their safety and at a higher cost fi­nan­cially for their par­ents.

I cer­tainly do agree with chil­dren from very low in­come fam­i­lies re­ceiv­ing this help in get­ting to school.

How­ever, I am wor­ried for the safety of the other pupils who will be left with no school trans­port and the im­pact this will have on traf­fic con­ges­tion in the area es­pe­cially around the schools. Geral­dine Baird via email

I am an SNP sup­porter but I welcome the elec­tion of Jere­mey Cor­byn, it is a breath of fresh air and the death knell to the right wing Blairites.

We dras­ti­cally need an end to this ‘old school boy net­work’ and nepo­tism in pol­i­tics where we are preached about aus­ter­ity but the Leader of the House of Com­mons can get a limo to take him home from a func­tion at a cost of £1500 to the tax payer or our un­elected Lords get £30k a year at­ten­dance money.

There are cries of foul from our Con­ser­va­tive friends in Scot­land about another in­de­pen­dence vote but peo­ple are sick of the pro­pa­ganda.

We need a new pro­gres­sive ap­proach to fix our bro­ken so­ci­ety.

The aus­ter­ity experiment has failed dra­mat­i­cally and a new wind of change is on its way. Ful­ton Hunter Cam­bus­lang

The Re­former re­port on the res­ig­na­tion of David McCle­mont from the Scot­tish So­cial­ist Party (Sept 2) was se­ri­ously ex­ag­ger­ated.

De­spite the head­line claim­ing a “bit­ter row”, no such ex­change oc­curred within the lo­cal branch. So low on the radar were David’s reser­va­tions about the SSP en­gag­ing with RISE that his res­ig­na­tion (par­tic­u­larly the public man­ner of it) came as a com­plete sur­prise to long-stand­ing mem­bers of the SSP in Cam­bus­lang and Ruther­glen.

Had David brought these reser­va­tions into the open at the Branch and made his feel­ings ob­vi­ous, we could have dis­cussed the is­sue and per­haps avoided this out­come. As a re­spected mem­ber and Branch Sec­re­tary, it would have been easy for David to bring a mo­tion for dis­cus­sion or even one of out­right op­po­si­tion to the pro­ject, but that never hap­pened.

As David rightly points out, the in­de­pen­dence ref­er­en­dum rein­vig­o­rated the SSP lo­cally and na­tion­ally. It also found SSP mem­bers work­ing along­side mem­bers of other par­ties and none in a com­mon cause. While sig­nif­i­cant po­lit­i­cal dif­fer­ences re­main be­tween the pro-in­de­pen­dence par­ties, there are many who en­gaged in­di­vid­u­ally or through the Rad­i­cal In­de­pen­dence Cam­paign (RIC) who have much in com­mon with the SSP.

This is mainly a new gen­er­a­tion of ac­tivists for whom a so­cial move­ment is more at­trac­tive than the more dis­ci­plined struc­ture of a party. That was re­flected in the de­ci­sion of RIC sup­port­ers not to form a new party post-ref­er­en­dum. Many did, how­ever, wish to con­tinue cam­paign­ing and from that was born the con­cept of a new Left Al­liance com­bin­ing these ac­tivists with pre-ex­ist­ing or­gan­i­sa­tions.

The de­ci­sion of the SSP to en­gage with this process came about over a num­ber of months and our Branch hosted a meet­ing with Jonathan Shafi (one of the or­gan­is­ers of RIC) some months ago.

SSP con­fer­ence sub­se­quently agreed to ex­plore the pos­si­bil­ity of a broader left or­gan­i­sa­tion by a vote of three to one. The Na­tional Ex­ec­u­tive and then Na­tional Coun­cil voted to fur­ther pur­sue the con­cept unan­i­mously and by seven to one ma­jori­ties re­spec­tively. No demo­cratic process is per­fect, but this re­flects the ma­jor­ity wish within the SSP to pur­sue a mo­bil­i­sa­tion for left unity, one of the found­ing con­cepts of the SSP.

As a re­sult of the hard work which went into gen­er­at­ing such an al­liance, RISE was launched at a day-long meet­ing of over 600 left ac­tivists in Glas­gow. Though I was not there my­self, all those I have spo­ken to who were, found it to be a pos­i­tive ex­pe­ri­ence. This, how­ever, ap­pears to have been the day that David an­nounced his res­ig­na­tion from the SSP. Branch mem­bers I have spo­ken to are grate­ful for David’s work in the last year and be­yond and cer­tainly have no per­sonal axes to grind with him. His in­put will be missed, but we will move on nonethe­less. The in­ten­tion is now to roll out the for­ma­tion of RISE groups across Scot­land in ad­vance of a found­ing con­fer­ence and to spell out poli­cies. The SSP in Ruther­glen, Cam­bus­lang and Blan­tyre in­tends to play a full role in that process. David Steven­son Cairns Road




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