Cole- Hamilton: Scotland should provide sanctuary to refugees

Speaking after a debate on supporting the people of Afghanistan where his amendment was backed by the Scottish Parliament, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said:

“I am delighted the chamber agreed to my amendment, which sets out how the UK and Scottish Governments should go further to help Afghan refugees.

“Given the scale of this crisis, helping 20,000 people resettle should be the starting point, not the limit to the ambition. The Scottish Government should proactively evidence how we can help and show our readiness to make that case.

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Cole-Hamilton: Liberal Democrats will oppose Covid ID cards.

Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP today laid out an emphatic opposition to so-called Covid ID cards, as the First Minister responded to his opening First Minister’s Question as leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats.  

Scottish Liberal Democrats have been vocal opponents of the move towards Covid ID cards, citing practical and principled problems with the dangerous precedent.

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Time for Scotland to show its ready to provide sanctuary to thousands of Afghan refugees

Speaking ahead of a Scottish Government debate on supporting the people of Afghanistan on Thursday 2nd September, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton has called on Scottish ministers to set out concrete commitments to help refugees from Afghanistan as part of the cross-party effort to persuade the UK Government to lift its “woeful” ambitions.

Mr Cole-Hamilton is asking for local authorities to be given additional funding to enable them to provide homes and support, but said the case for providing sanctuary to thousands more can be strengthened by the Scottish Government fully detailing Scotland’s capacity to help.

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Liberal Democrats oppose SNP/Green medical ID cards

Responding to the First Minister’s announcement of the introduction this month of medical ID cards to enter larger venues, clubs and sporting events, with the potential for expansion to other sectors and areas of society, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton said:

“This Government has moved effectively to a position where people will now be compelled to show evidence of their medical records in order to access certain freedoms. This is an illiberal step and a dangerous precedent.

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Report shows action needed to prevent another year of stop-start schooling

New figures released today by Public Health Scotland show that 38.1% of school pupils who tested positive for COVID-19, passed the virus on to at least one other pupil, based on assumed class contact tracing by their having 10 or more contacts.

The report also indicates that the risk of further infections increased in the later part of last year, as new variants with increased transmissibility increased the likelihood of infections passing on in school settings.

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Green party picks nationalism over the climate emergency

Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has declared that the Green party has picked nationalism over the climate emergency and warned that on issues like education reform, the abolition of the council tax and the decarbonisation of our homes Green MSPs will not seek to trouble the SNP or subject it to effective scrutiny.

In a speech to the Scottish Parliament he said:

As a Liberal Democrat, I will always look for and appreciate consensus in our politics.

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Young people's mental health services a shadow of what they should be

Responding to Audit Scotland's blog on mental health services for children and young people, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader and health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said:

"Scottish Liberal Democrats have championed the cause of Scotland's mental health for years now because we recognised that even before the pandemic services were a shadow of what they should be.

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Tens of thousands waiting for tests and treatment

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP today said “patients and NHS staff need new hope” after statistics revealed that more than 100,000 people are waiting for key diagnostic tests and Nicola Sturgeon’s Treatment Time Guarantee is being missed 200 times a day. 

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“Painful waits” for a quarter of A&E attendees

In response to another week of record A&E waiting times, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has criticised the Health Secretary for publishing a “limp” NHS Recovery Plan.

New figures show just 75.1% of those attending A&E were seen within the SNP’s four-hour target, leaving 6,633 people waiting longer.

This new record follows successive declines in recent weeks, and reports of hospitals under acute pressure. Last week, NHS Lanarkshire postponed non-urgent elective procedures in a bid to reduce strain.  

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Greta Thunberg says that Scotland is not a world leader on climate change

Responding to comments from Greta Thunberg that Scotland is not a world leader on climate change, Scottish Liberal Democrat climate emergency spokesperson Liam McArthur said:

“The world’s most famous environmental activist has a point.

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