12 June 2024 – today’s press releases (Scotland and Wales)

  • Scottish Liberal Democrats call for climate-focused industrial strategy
  • “Free transport the key to fighting child poverty” – Welsh Lib Dems
  • “We cannot fail our children in the fight against racism” – Welsh Lib Dems

Scottish Liberal Democrats call for climate-focused industrial strategy

Scottish Liberal Democrat deputy leader Wendy Chamberlain today laid out her party’s plans for a new industrial strategy “which has tackling the climate emergency at its heart” during a visit to a clean power-start up.

Wendy Chamberlain was at PlusZero, a Harris-based company specialising in the production, distribution and operation of green hydrogen.

The Scottish Liberal Democrats would support science, research and innovation, particularly among small businesses and start-ups with an interest in zero-carbon and environmental technologies, by:

  • Investing in energy storage, including green hydrogen, pumped storage and battery capability;
  • Continuing to participate in Horizon Europe and joining the European Innovation Council, both of which have a big focus on hydrogen as a breakthrough technology;
  • Aiming for at least 3% of GDP to be invested in research and development by 2030;
  • Improving joint ministerial work on new cross-cutting policies such as the UK industrial strategy.

Wendy Chamberlain said:

The UK can lead the world with innovation and ingenuity. Liberal Democrats will put tackling the climate emergency at the heart of a new industrial strategy, cutting emissions and driving a strong economic recovery.

Businesses and entrepreneurs should be supported to create clean well-paid jobs in every part of Scotland.

While other parties abandon their climate commitments, only the Scottish Liberal Democrats have a plan that can give businesses the certainty they need to invest in products and unlock their global potential.

We need to seize the economic opportunities of net zero now. We simply can’t afford for the UK to be left behind on green skills and the industries of the future.

“Free transport the key to fighting child poverty” – Welsh Lib Dems

This week in the Senedd, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have reiterated their calls for free public transport for everyone under the age of 25.

A recent report from the Senedd Petitions Committee highlighted the positive impact that affordable transport could have towards fighting child poverty.

According to the report, public transport fares in Wales have skyrocketed up to 74% over a 10-year period.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have claimed that, because most under-18s rely on buses and trains, exorbitant costs are barring access to education, jobs, and essential activities.

Speaking in the Siambr, party leader Jane Dodds MS citied the free bus scheme in Scotland as an example of the positive benefits that free public transport can have.

The scheme, which provides free bus travel for 5–21-year-olds, has so far generated over 100 million journeys.

Commenting, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds MS said:

Back in 2021 the Welsh Liberal Democrats pledged free public transport for everyone under the age of 25, this is a promise that we intend to keep.

This policy pledge of ours isn’t just an attempt to win votes, but a genuine plan to help tackle child poverty here in Wales.

In Scotland, the free bus scheme has already shown tangible benefits, generating over 100 million journeys in just the first year. Helping to expand opportunities for young people while easing the strain on family finances.

By providing free public transport for young people, we can break down barriers and work towards directly tackling the persistent challenge of child poverty here in Wales.

“We cannot fail our children in the fight against racism” – Welsh Lib Dems

Today in the Senedd, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have called for action against racism in schools across Wales.

A recent Freedom of Information request has revealed that in the 2018/19 academic year alone there were 174 exclusions related to incidents of racism across 21 local authorities.

The Welsh Lib Dems have now called on the Welsh Government to take a proactive stance against racist bullying and harassment in schools.

Speaking to the Siambr on Wednesday, party leader Jane Dodds MS urged for the creation of a “comprehensive system” to track patterns of discrimination and review schools with high exclusion rates.

Commenting, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds MS said:

Despite some meaningful progress, people from ethnic minority backgrounds are still facing disparities in housing, education, employment, and healthcare.

There have been some noted areas of positive change, but complacency is the enemy of progress and there is still more work to be done.

The education sector remains a critical background in the fight against racial inequality, and more needs to be done to address how schools should handle racist incidents.

The minds of our children are fertile ground, and we cannot fail them by allowing them to view appalling behaviour such as racist bullying or harassment as the norm.

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This entry was posted in News, Press releases, Scotland and Wales.

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