MSP Joan McAlpine last night hailed the SNP’s programme for government, as the First Minister unveiled her blueprint for the coming parliamentary term.
Speaking in Parliament, the South Scotland MSP said that Dumfries and Galloway would benefit from the creation of a National Investment Bank to complement the new South of Scotland Enterprise Agency, which will be up and running by 2020.
Ms McAlpine said:
“There is so much to be proud of in the SNP’s Programme for Government.
“The creation of a National Investment Bank will go hand in hand with plans for the new South Scotland enterprise agency, which will fantastic for the economy in the region.
“The need for a bespoke approach to economic development in the South Scotland region is something that I, and other stakeholders have been pushing for some time, and I am particularly pleased that the objectives for the new agency include ‘sustaining and growing communities’ and ‘capitalising on people and resources’ – objectives which mirror those of Highlands and Islands Enterprise, which has been so successful in addressing issues faced in the north of Scotland.”
“I am sure that the new south of Scotland enterprise agency, along with a new national investment bank, will help to address issues of an ageing population, outward migration of young people, as well as connectivity issues, and I am delighted that the SNP is delivering it.”
Ms McAlpine also welcomed plans to automatically pardon individuals convicted under discriminatory laws, and extending free personal care to everyone who requires it regardless of age.
Commenting, Ms McAlpine said:
“The programme can be neatly summed up in three words: compassion, ambition and progressiveness.
“The proposed Turing law will grant automatic pardons to those convicted under discriminatory laws that are no longer in force; unlike in England where individuals will have to apply for a pardon.
“I was especially pleased to hear plans to extend personal and nursing care to everyone who needs it – this should protect vulnerable disabled people from hikes in care charges by local authorities as has been seen in the past, and which I campaigned against alongside the Learning Disability Alliance in the last parliamentary term.”
The full text of the debate is available here.