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SNP Manifesto Commitment to the LGBTI Community We Will Change Scottish Society

Stonewall Scotland (@StonewallScot) | Twitter

The SNP manifesto commitment to the LGBTI network says it all

01: Seek full devolution from the UK government of employment, equality and immigration

02: Introduce measures ensuring LGBT+ and intersex people are treated with dignity, respect and free from discrimination

03: Reform Gender recognition laws and recognise non-binary people in all official documents

04: Pardon retrospectively where needed, pardons for gay and bi people criminalised for their sexuality

05: Provide funding for life-saving PrEP medication

06: Protect the Human Rights Act and the Equality Act

07: Outlaw dangerous and discredited conversion therapy

08: Champion LGBT+ equality and human rights worldwide

The inclusion of such a radical programme of change in the manifesto, without discussion with or approval of party members breaks new ground for a Party which is at sixes and sevens as to the direction it intends to take the nation and there are many in the Party who are very unhappy with the leadership. But the force is apparently with other organisations.

SUPPORTING TRANS YOUNG PEOPLE

The Scottish LGBTI Equality Pledge

The Pledge has been developed by the Equality Network, Scottish Trans Alliance, Stonewall Scotland and LGBT Youth Scotland, national charities working for LGBTI equality and human rights in Scotland. It calls for candidates to commit to:

01: Promote positive mental wellbeing for LGBTI people, ensuring that actions to improve Scotland’s mental health specifically address the inequalities LGBTI people face.

02: Support LGBTI people to have equal access to health and social care services, including by reforming NHS gender identity services to be fit-for-purpose.

03: Improve LGBTI rights and protections in the law, including by reforming laws on gender recognition and ending conversion therapy.

04: Support LGBTI young people to flourish in schools through the continued implementation of inclusive education.

05: Stand up for all LGBTI people, including the most marginalised – LGBTI people of colour, refugees, disabled people, older people, and trans people.

We want to see as many MSPs committed to LGBTI equality in the next Scottish Parliament as possible. Please take the time to email your candidates to let them know this matters to you, and ask them to sign our LGBTI pledge. It can make a real difference!

Everything tagged Stonewall Scotland - All About Trans

The undernoted SNP candidates have signed the pledge
Aberdeen Central – Kevin Stewart
Aberdeen Donside – Jackie Dunbar
Aberdeen South – Audrey Nicoll
Aberdeen West – Fergus Mutch
Airdrie & Shotts – Neil Gray
Banff & Buchan – Karen Adam
Clydesdale – Màiri McAllan
Dundee East – Shona Robison
Dundee West – Joe FitzPatrick
East Kilbride – Collette Stevenson
Edinburgh Central – Angus Robertson

Edinburgh North – Ben Macpherson
Edinburgh South – Catriona MacDonald
Glasgow Kelvin – Kaukab Stewart
Hamilton-Larkhall – Christina McKelvie
Shetland – Tom Wills
Strathkelvin & Bearsden – Rona Mackay

List Candidates

Central Scotland – Neil Gray & Christina McKelvie
Glasgow – Kaukab Stewart
Highlands – Sarah Fanet & Emma Roddick & Tom Wills
Lothians – Graham Campbell & Catriona MacDonald & Ben Macpherson & Angus Robertson
Mid Scotland & Fife – Stefan Hoggan-Radu & Fiona Sarwar
North East – Fergus Mutch & Lynne Short
South Scotland – Màiri McAllan
West Scotland – Michelle Campbell & Rona Mackay

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The Threat to Women is a Real and Present Danger

Puberty blocker firm funded Liberal Democrats - Christian Concern

The Liberal Democratic Party is pledging ‘complete reform’ of the Gender Recognition Act

Assisting their efforts with donations exceeding £1.3million, is Ferring Pharmaceuticals a company that markets drugs used in gender-identity clinics to delay puberty.

The party has already upset feminists, who worry that the “extreme trans-ideological” policies in its manifesto will put vulnerable women at risk.

The company is owned by the Swedish billionaire Frederik Paulsen and markets the drug, which is used to block puberty among adolescents.

The Lib Dem manifesto pledges “complete reform of the Gender Recognition Act to remove the requirement for medical reports, scrapping fees and recognition of non-binary gender identities”.

It also promises to “introduce an ‘X’ gender option on passports and extend equality law.

Details of the donations to the Lib/Dems. Other Parties and Stonewall are in on the act billions being spent on gender bending. Women need to be warned of the threat to their existence as a separate gender.

We've finally hit peak insanity over trans… haven't we?

Feb 2015: Russian Consul’s puberty blocker drug firm bankrolls the Liberal Democrats

A Drugs company owned by a Swedish billionaire philanthopist and explorer, who is an honorary Russian consul and lives in Switzerland, has given nearly £500k to the Liberal Democrats.

Frederik Paulsen, who lives in Lausanne, is worth an estimated £3bn and owns Ferring Pharmaceuticals. The company is ultimately controlled from Curacao, a Caribbean tax haven.

Electoral Commission records show that the British arm of the company, based in West Drayton, west London, gave four donations to the Liberal Democrats between December 2013 and June 2014. Three of them exceeded £100,000.

The British arm of Ferring Pharmaceuticals was set up in 1975. Ferring said the company had made the donations because it supported Liberal Democrats policy on Europe. (Sunday Times)

Comment: And the Lib/Dems had the hard neck to criticise Alex Salmond for broadcasting his show on RT!!!

Clegg's £30,000 Bung from Offshore Pal of Putin - Guido Fawkes

Feb 2016: Shameless Liberal Democrat Nick Clegg has trousered a massive £30k payment from an official “friend of Putin” whose company is based in an offshore tax haven.

Clegg received the bung from Frederik Paulsen, the billionaire chairman of drugs firm Ferring Pharmaceuticals. 

Paulsen was personally awarded an “Order of Friendship” medal by Putin himself. The Vlad acolyte who has poured huge amounts of cash into Russia, was given the gong by the Russian Foreign ministry, and is an honorary Russian citizen. Not only that, his company is ultimately controlled from a Caribbean tax haven…

The Liberal Democrats accuse other Party’s and politicians of siding with Putin. Conduct which is at the highest level of hypocrisy given the Party and its leader’s happiness to line their pockets with huge wedges of cash from Putin and his friends.

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/honorary-russians-drug-firm-bankrolls-lib-dems-2cknvzqmf7r

https://www.secret-bases.co.uk/wiki/Ferring_Pharmaceuticals

https://www.eldyly.com/tag/party-donations

Obama Says Transgender Bathroom Directive Based on Law

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I Kid You Not – Nicola Sturgeon’s Darling Boy Stephen Gethins is on the Board of The John Smith Trust

 

Girodivite: Mind Manipulation and Brain Washing-The Price of a Predictable  Society

 

The John Smith Trust 

The Trust runs intensive, four-week Fellowship Programmes twice a year in the UK for emerging leaders from 12 countries of the former Soviet Union. The Programmes are built around three pillars – unique insight into UK institutions, personalized meetings and leadership skills development – which together offer both a broad picture and an individual focus.

What is really happening

The political psychology programmes delivered by the Trust are designed to influence the thought processes of individuals confronted with a wide range of political situations so that they select options that most reflect the political system chosen by the Trust. Achieving success means that it has imprinted on the minds of course participants that the ideal is the western-style democracy, with its human rights legislation protecting individual and minority rights and good governance. Shades of “The Manchurian Candidate”.

Social, Group, and Political Psychology Research Group | UWTSD

 

The Board

Baroness Smith: Board member of a number of organisations with interests in Russia and FSU countries. Very influential politically has had a very long career near the top of the British secret services. Widow of the late John Smith, Labour Party Leader.

Catherine Smith: An Advocate. Daughter of Baroness Smith. Vice Chair of JUSTICE Scotland, the Scottish arm of the London NGO. Involved in work promoting the rule of law and human rights in developing democracies and sustainable development in societies in transition.

Craig Oliphant: Senior Adviser at the Foreign Policy Centre, in London. (1)

Stephen Gethins: Former SNP Member of Parliament for North East Fife. Worked with Craig Oliphant in Eastern Europe before entering politics for the SNP.

David Charters: Former diplomat. Particular personal interests include cyber security and evolving forms of conflict.

Alex Just: Transitioned from law to high-level strategic communications.

Prof. The Lord Alderdice: Liberal Democrat member of the Lords since 1996. Currently Director of the Centre for the Resolution of Intractable Conflict at Harris Manchester College, Oxford.

 

How A Murky Row Over Russia, Jeremy Corbyn And A 'Psyops Campaign' Went  Mainstream | HuffPost UK

 

(1) Craig Oliphant, is a senior member of the Integrity Initiative/Cluster/UK/Inner Core.[1] 

And the Integrity Initiative is:

In 2006, NATO Special Advisor Chris Donnelly co-founded a charity, the “Institute for Statecraft and Governance” (IfS) together with Daniel Lafayeedney, a man previously condemned as untrustworthy in business matters by a judge.

The IFS which authored and published articles on threats to NATO imperialism, the biggest being Russia, was registered to a semi-derelict mill in the Fife constituency of Board member and ex-SNP MP Stephen Gethins.

In 2015, the IfS established the Integrity Initiative, an organization that also received Tory Government funding from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, initially to the tune of many millions.

The Integrity Initiative is described by the British government as a counter-Russia-disinformation campaign, which, in typically Orwellian language, means that it is a U.S.-British disinformation campaign.

Integrity Initiative is the biggest story of 2018 – but not because of  anything it did — RT World News

 

This is what the Scottish Charity Regulator thought of the organisation:

The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator opened an inquiry into the Institute for Statecraft the 13 December 2018, which after 10 months found that “one of its most significant activities, a project known as the Integrity Initiative did not provide public benefit in furtherance of the charity’s purposes”. It also found that trustees had “breached their trustee duties to act with care and diligence in the interest of the charity, some of them to a serious extent”.[28]

 

Scottish Labour candidate facing questions over links to 'secretive  military propaganda unit' | HeraldScotland

 

The 77th Brigade and Scotland’s Independence

Black Watch soldier, Brigadier Alastair Aitken, formed the 77th (CYOPS Brigade, referred to in the media as ‘Twitter troops‘ or ‘Facebook warriors‘, which he described as  the largest integrated government communications organisation [in] Europe.

 

Scottish Labour has links

A Scottish Labour Party candidate and former “Better Together” boss has been called on to explain her links to a “military propaganda unit” within the British Army.

Kate Watson is believed to be part of the Berkshire-based 77th Brigade, which was described by one newspaper as a “special force of Facebook warriors”.

She declined to comment, but David Miller, a professor of political sociology at Bristol University said: “The 77th Brigade is involved in manipulation of the media including using fake online profiles.

Why Political Psychology is Increasing in Popularity in 2016 |  CareersinPsychology.org

 

Respected elder statesman of the SNP give warning and advice

In an article published in the “National” (Dec 2018) George Kerevan wrote:

“In any future Scottish independence referendum will the 77th Brigade be neutral or see the yes campaign as a threat to national security and  conduct a campaign to protect the constitutional status quo?  SNP MSP’s and MP’s at Westminster should ask these questions now before it’s too late.”

 

The Glasgow University hosted John Smith Centre 

The recent purge of left wing politicians and their leadership brought about the return of power and influence to the “Fabian Society” and its right wing socialists, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Ian Murray and many other Unionist Labourites.

One of the most insidious objectives of the Fabians is to create a One World (‘Third Way’) government linking with the “New World Order” (NWO) project financed and controlled by the USA.

In furtherance of their aims the Fabian’s developed and implemented the highly secretive “educational charity”, “Common Purpose”, which now effectively controls many facets of local and mainstream politics and the media (BBC). More on “Common Purpose” here: http://www.stopcp.com and here: http://www.cpexposed.com .

With Blair then Brown in charge of government the NWO/Bilderberg movement enjoyed guarantees that the UK government would manipulate the electorate and parliament to support their efforts without question. War and War and yet more War. All unjustified.

Scots need to be alert to the dangers of unwarranted and misleading statements designed to cause political instability, from persons who actively support the “new” venture which was sprung of Scots without warning. It should be remembered that the late John Smith was a leading Unionist politician and a Bilderberger to boot!!‌‌

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The Centre’ public sales pitch

A Board comprising members of the Smith family, University of Glasgow alumni, public service practitioners and academic staff oversees the conduct, leadership and management of the Centre.

It sets the priorities; benchmarks best practice; and reviews performance to enable the Centre to achieve its aim to promote trust in politics and public service and to empower and attract more people to contribute to public life.

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 membership of  the fluctuating Board 

Catherine Smith (Chair): Catherine is John Smith’s youngest daughter.

Professor Anne Anderson OBE: multi disciplinary educational activist.

Rt Hon Ed Balls: Hard right rich boy and “new Labour” politician

Dr Matt Carter: Blair’s man. Right wing “New Labour” political strategist.

Rt Hon Ruth Davidson MSP: Baroness Ruth. Her rise from nowhere is being guided by ??

David Muir: Ultra right wing “New Labour” strategist. Gordon Brown’s man.

The Baroness Smith of Gilmorehill: Very influential politically has had a very long career near the top of the British secret services. Widow of the late John Smith, Labour Party Leader.

Andrew Wilson: A banker: held a number of posts, including Deputy Chief Economist and Head of Group Communications. at the financially incompetent and ultimately disgraced RBS Group. Founder of the increasingly influential political media company, Charlotte Street Partners.

Kezia Dugdale: Former leader of the Labour Party in Scotland has been appointed Director of the Centre.

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Tony Blair’s cynical epitaph to the career of John Smith

Blair told his wife that John Smith would die prematurely and he, not Gordon Brown would win the race to become the next Labour leader. The statement was made in April 2004, only a month before Smith suffered a fatal heart attack.

Blair woke his wife, Cherie, one morning and told her: “If John dies, I will be leader, not Gordon. And somehow, I think this will happen. I just think it will.”

Smith had suffered a serious heart attack in 1988 and Blair argued this was thanks to his lifestyle and, in particular, his heavy drinking.

Branding Smith a “stupendous toper”, Blair wrote: “He could drink in a way I have never seen before or since. If there was an Olympic medal for drinking, John would have contended with such superiority that after a few rounds the rest of the field would have simply shaken their heads and banished themselves from the track.” (The Telegraph)

 

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Leslie Evans & Judith Mackinnon – Is there a Conspiracy to Destroy the SNP Government by Innuendo? or Are They Just Incompetent?

 

 

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Leslie Evans

Born in Northern Ireland in 1958. Relocated to Sheffield. Attended High Storrs Comprehensive School 1970-76. Gained a degree in Music from Liverpool University. Married Derek McVay 1990. One son.

At School: (her own words, nearly)

Absorbed lots of knowledge. Music important – soft spot David Bowie, likes reggae and dub, Bach + Bartok. Rereads Jane Austen, theatre lover, views Shakespeare regularly. Learnt to like poetry – Sylvia Plath, Jackie Kay, John Donne.

Loved history – fascinated with Gender politics. In particular her feminism and yes she is a feminist. Dated back to learning about Elizabeth 1st’s speech at Tilbury,

“I know I have the body of a weak, feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king”.

Not just knowledge absorbed – learnt to ask not just what or why? But – really? Experience shaped her politics and values, and views about diversity, equality and inclusion.

Cultivated skills and capacities and the propensity to be curious, the ability to analyze – the desire to inform opinion and the appetite to question everything.

Gained 8 “O” levels in one year. Lost focus in the years following. More interested in partying than studying. Poor “A” level results.

Hard to take. Failure brought home the importance of hard work.

Despite poor results secured a place studying music at Liverpool University. Not talented or dedicated enough to be professional performer. Used musical skills to earn cash – in orchestra pit and teaching piano.

Used music degree as means to end, getting onto a post graduate course in London to get into arts administration.

Course included an employment secondment – worked really hard – made herself indispensable – gave up wild life and became totally dependable.

 

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Employment with District councils

Offered employment in arts with local authority in London. Then similar work in Sheffield.

Moved to Edinburgh 1985 – employed with Edinburgh District Council in senior management roles, (1985 and 1987 and from 1989 to 2000).

Ensuring effective delivery of arts, theatre, entertainment and recreation. Similar work with Stirling Council (1988).

On each transfer of employment moved up the management ladder – role and responsibilities became broader and more diverse.

Learnt to seize every opportunity offered – to show enthusiasm – to speak first – to answer yes – to think about whether and how to do it later. Learned to feign confidence – faking it until able to make it.

 

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Edinburgh District Council Scandal -Leslie Evans Nailed In Public

If someone in a position of authority is determined to smear you, it is very difficult to recover. Mud sticks.

Now, it is simply not the done thing for a Councillor to ever criticize an officer at a public meeting.

Politicians may only address their concerns to the Head of Department who is paid shed-loads to take the flack.

Those below departmental head know they can get away with not owning up to manipulations and misrepresentations, because that is what Department heads are for.

Back then, officers didn’t even have their name anywhere in the papers.

However, on this rare occasion, Councillor  Steve Cardownie stepped over that thin red line and fingered one such officer.

“Is it possible”, he thundered, that a very senior officer (there could only be one!) had tampered with the report, thereby undermining its validity and “independence”?

You could hear a pin drop. All eyes turned on Leslie Evans, who became bright, bright red with fury and froze, stock still. You could almost see the steam coming out of her ears. Her Video Strategy died before it had lived.

Footnote

It is said Leslie Evans caused Edinburgh Council to lose millions in the Usher Hall Lottery debacle of ’98, which led to the resignation of Roger Jones, the best and most popular Head of Department the Council ever had.

When Roger was forced to resign over the loss, Leslie had the temerity to give him a leaving card comparing him to Churchill – he was a hero, she said. If she truly felt that way, maybe she could have ‘fessed up and taken the rap, resigning in his place? Not our Leslie.

Full Article here: http://www.kidsnotsuits.com/fake-news-how-public-lies-begin/

This is a must read since it provides confirmation of views held by an increasing number of Scots that Leslie Evans is not an appropriate person to hold the position of Permanent Secretary to Scotland’s First minister.

 

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What A Con – The Civil Service and Their Janus Faced Illegal Politics

Leslie Evans reported to Francesca Osowska OBE in David Mundell’s office.

Osowska was formerly Principal Private Secretary (PPS) to the First Minister (Alex Salmond) between 2007/09.

Francesca Osowska, in a number of evasive statements to the Scottish Affairs Committee, glossed over the expensive and extensive work of a large group of (supposedly politically neutral) Civil Servants who actively supported the objectives of the “Better Together” campaign.

A gross misuse of public finances and Civil Servants presumably by David Cameron and Sir Jeremy Heywood.

She also confirmed that Mundell retained funding sufficient to employ up to 100 whole time equivalent (W.T.E.) posts and that salary and incidental costs arising from such employment are (top sliced) from Scotland’s block grant before the allocation of finance to the Scottish government.

The slush fund created is an ever increasing annual financial nest egg, skimmed off Scotland’s block financial grant and used, abused by the Mundell for purposes such as UK government anti-devolution leaflet production, printing and distribution.

And Hiring of Special Advisors (SpAds), usually sons, daughters, other relations, friends of ministers or other MP’s and employment of Civil Servants from other Government Departments in times of need.

Reflect also on the disgraceful actions of the UK Cabinet Office and Treasury Civil servants which contain the proud admission that they had been seconded to the Scottish Office (in Westminster) and were tasked, for an extended period of time to provide active support to the “Better Together” campaign.

Actions that brought about the defeat of Scots who wished only to be an independent nation once again. What a bunch of charlatans.

Full Article here: https://caltonjock.com/2017/07/24/mundell-and-the-tory-party-actively-aided-by-the-scottish-office-are-the-legal-government-of-scotland-holyrood-politicians-need-to-be-mindful-of-this-or-westminster-will-shut-it-down/

 

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Civil Service (CS):

Joined CS in 2000 soon after devolution – new Scottish Executive. Early 40s represented a major career change – big risk. But had gained experience in public service with local government – government service a cakewalk? – not so – miserable at work – didn’t seem to add value or make any difference. First year fish out of water. Held nerve – stayed resilient.

 

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Permanent Secretary Scottish Government

The retirement of the permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government, Sir Peter Housden (1) created a vacancy within the Civil Service.

The competition to succeed him was overseen by the First Civil Service Commissioner and open to candidates across the UK civil service, including in Whitehall.

Ms Sturgeon was presented with a shortlist of vetted candidates and selected Ms Evans.

Evans was appointed as Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government on July 1, 2015.

In this role, she is the principal policy adviser to the First Minister and Secretary to the Scottish Cabinet.

She is also the Principal Accountable Officer for the Scottish Government with personal responsibility for the propriety and regularity of Government finance and for economic, efficient and effective use of all related resources.

Evans is the senior Civil Servant in Scotland and leads more than 5,000 civil servants working for the Scottish Government, supporting development, implementation and communication of government policies, in accordance with the Civil Service Code.

She joined the Scottish Government in September 2000, having spent 20 years working for local authorities in Scotland (City of Edinburgh Council and Stirling Council) and England (London Borough of Greenwich and Sheffield City Council).

Her previous post within the Scottish Government was Director General Learning and Justice. Other positions held include, Head of Local Government Constitution & Governance Division, Head of Public Service Reform Group, Head of Tourism, Culture and Sport, and Director of Culture, External Affairs and Tourism.

(1): Insiders briefed that Sir Jeremy Heywood remained livid over the behavior of Housden during the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum.

When he was accused of betraying the Westminster Civil Service brief by “going native”.

He was also criticized by Commons select committee for allowing the publication of swathes of Alex Salmond’s White Paper on independence that were politically “partisan” and failed to meet “factual standards”.

And a Westminster public administration committee said he should not have allowed taxpayers’ money to be used to publish sections that amounted to an SNP “agenda”.

The recruitment and appointment process of the new Permanent Secretary was tasked to the offices of the “First Civil Service Commissioner”, based in Whitehall so that the Westminster government would assured the appointment of their preferred candidate.

So as to be satisfied there would be no repeat of the conduct of Sir Peter Housden one of the new Permanent Secretary’s key tasks would be to rebuild trust with Holyrood’s opposition parties and Whitehall mandarins.

Leslie Evans is the Westminster Government’s “safe pair of hands” at Holyrood.

Over time she will add other Senior managers of the same ilk to her team, effectively emasculating the Scottish Government at Holyrood.

 

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Salmond’s Nark Has Fallen Foul Of The Whitehall Mandarins

What do Whitehall’s top people do when one of their own goes native? When he breaks the code of the mandarins, stops giving his minister unwelcome advice and fails to say “No, Minister”

What they do is exclude him from their inner counsels – as we can see in the strange case of Sir Peter Housden.

Housden, 61, is permanent secretary – top civil servant – to the Scottish government and his political boss is First Minister Alex Salmond.

Officially, he is no different to the other permanent secretaries and regularly attends their Wednesday morning meetings in Whitehall.

Unofficially, though, they regard him – there’s no nice way to put this – as “Salmond’s nark”.

He is not on the crucial committee that is bringing together Whitehall’s campaign against Scottish independence. “Good God, no,” said one insider in shocked tones. “Housden would just report everything back to Salmond.”

Full Article here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/9645906/When-it-comes-to-Sir-Peter-Housden-we-have-a-problem.html

 

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Sir Peter Housden Faces Fresh Accusations of Partisanship

The head of Scotland’s Civil Service faced fresh accusations of being politically partisan last night after he told thousands of his officials that he expected Alex Salmond to emerge victorious in the independence referendum.

Sir Peter Housden circulated a briefing, in which he informed civil servants that he expected “substantial negotiations” with UK ministers after the ballot — all but dismissing the prospect of an SNP defeat.

Sir Peter, the Scottish Executive’s permanent secretary and Alex Salmond’s most senior mandarin, predicted that the referendum process would have several stages and told his civil servants that they “don’t need to swallow this elephant whole” as it would “stretch now over a good number of years”.

He then considered what would happen after the referendum and predicted: “The other side of a referendum is likely to involve substantial negotiations.” He continued that it “will certainly require a major constitutional bill in the Westminster parliament to reflect a positive result”.

He did not spell out why he believed the SNP would win in the face of opinion polls that show only about a third of Scots would vote for separation.

Opposition leaders last night renewed their accusations that Sir Peter, who remains part of the British civil service, had “gone native”. The code governing officials prevents them expressing political views or advice.

Full Article here: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scotland/9021782/Sir-Peter-Housden-faces-fresh-accusations-of-partisanship.html

 

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Independence White Paper Failed To Meet Civil Service Standards

Scotland’s most senior mandarin should have blocked the publication of swathes of Alex Salmond’s White Paper on independence that were politically “partisan” and failed to meet “factual standards”, according to a damning report.

The Commons Public Administration select committee said Sir Peter Housden, the Scottish Government’s permanent secretary, should not have allowed taxpayers’ money to be used to publish parts of the blueprint that amounted to an SNP “agenda”.

At “the very least”, the committee found that Sir Peter should have sought a “letter of direction” from Mr Salmond, a document requested by civil servants when they disagree with a minister’s decision so strongly that they refuse to be accountable for it.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scottish-independence/11488869/Independence-White-Paper-failed-to-meet-civil-service-standards.html

 

Judith Mackinnon

 

 

The Alex Salmond Debacle

In 2016 Nicola Sturgeon announced that “open government” would be a feature of the Holyrood parliament and new policies were to be put in place.

Leslie Evans had no personnel management qualifications and needed to strengthen her team.

In 2017 she recruited Judith Mackinnon, an experienced human resources manager, to a newly created, (very well remunerated) “Head of People Advice” position.

This is the same person that was previously Head of Human Resource Governance at Police Scotland.

Hardly a recommendation for employment in the Scottish Government given the many scandals in the force in the years she was in post.

Leslie Evans approached Nicola Sturgeon with proposals to draft new procedures in line with the Scottish Governments transparency in government drive.

Authority gained, Judith Mackinnon compiled the policy document, which was duly signed off by Nicola Sturgeon in December 2017.

One one month later, in January 2018, two complaints were made of sexual harassment against Alex Salmond under the new rules.

The incidents were alleged to have taken place at Bute House in 2013.

It was almost as though there had been “malice aforethought” and complainants had been waiting for the new rules to come into force.

There certainly seems to have been no attempt to make the accusation until the policy was active, protecting the accusers from exposure.

No matter the outcome of any subsequent investigation, the political damage to the SNP government would be considerable at a time when a new Scottish Independence Referendum was being mooted.

Alex Salmond was not made aware of the complaints despite the procedure requiring him to be informed, but Evans briefed Nicola Sturgeon and made a Police report.

The police investigation is on-going but there is justifiable concern that the appointment of an investigating police officer to lead the investigation might have been arranged!!!! determining the outcome.

Supported by £100K “crown funding”, Alex instructed legal action against the Scottish Civil Service for the breach of procedure which gave the impression it had been deliberately enacted to damage Alex and the SNP.

At court the Scottish Government accepted that there had been significant procedural errors in the handling of the complaints.

The Judge rebuked the Government and instructed that the matter should be closed.

Costs of the proceedings (possibly around £500K) were charged to the government.

 

 

 

The procedural errors:

A weird sequence of events. Complaints against Alex Salmond made by two female staff about alleged incidents they said occurred in 2013 (four years after the event) and only one month after the new procedures had been put in place.

The government follow up investigation revealed that the recently appointed personnel professional, Judith Mackinnon (who had no direct management authority over them), had solicited the complaints against Alex Salmond, from the two female officers.

She then spoke to them, at length on a number of occasions, in a manner “bordering on encouragement to proceed with formal complaints” against Alex Salmond.

The Government legal team further accepted there had been a “significant amount of inappropriate direct personal contact” between Mackinnon and the complainants.

Evans stated that the nature of the complaints had been brought to her attention by Mackinnon and she appointed Mackinnon to formally investigate the matter and take the appropriate action as required by the new procedure. But in doing so Evans compromised the procedures she and Mackinnon had only recently put in place. Plonkers comes to mind.

 

BBC Democracy Live - Lack of business case for Police ...

 

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Scots are entitled to a judiciary free of political interference – Time for the SNP to butt out

 

 

 

Dismantling Scotland’s judicial system by stealth 

The 1707 Act of Union guaranteed the independence of the judiciary and Scottish law in perpetuity. But Westminster Unionist politicians and the House of Lords have rendered Scottish law impotent through the illegal imposition of the laws of “Greater England” on Scots for their own nefarious purposes. The insidious determination of the unionists to wipe out Scottish Law was further advanced in 1999 when the “Crown Office of Scotland” which had been independent from political interference for near 500 years was transferred lock, stock, and barrel to the control of the then Unionist supporting Scottish government. From that time the Scottish Judiciary has been subject to continuous pressure to remove from statute, trial by jury, not proven and other laws.

 

 

Removal of the judiciary system free from political control

Recent events in Holyrood have exposed the folly of transferring the  administration of the laws of Scotland to the political control of the Scottish Government.  The decision must be reversed without delay re-establishing the independence of the judiciary from political interference.

 

Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service – The NEN – North Edinburgh News

 

William Gordon Chalmers – the last truly independent Procurator Fiscal  of Scotland

Aberdonian William Gordon Chalmers was the permanent head of the procurator-fiscal service from 1974 to 1984 and zealously guarded the power of the Scots over their fiscal service.

He was a man of traditional values but was endowed with great vision to build a service to meet the challenges of the future and cope with an increase in serious crime at a time of economic stringency.

He was proud of his Aberdeen roots, having attended both Robert Gordon’s College and Aberdeen University. And served as an officer with the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders, in the Second World War in which he was awarded the Military Cross. 

After hostilities ceased he became a solicitor and practiced in Aberdeen before joining the procurator-fiscal service as a depute-fiscal in Dunfermline in 1950.

During this period he gained a reputation as a fiscal who was prepared to take on a difficult case and work on it to secure the best possible result.

Although he enjoyed good relations with the police and politicians, he was always careful to ensure his and the fiscal’s independence in the process of investigating and prosecuting crime.

In 1959 he was promoted to Senior Depute Fiscal at Edinburgh then, in 1963, entered the Crown Office as an assistant to the Crown agent before becoming Deputy Crown Agent in 1967 and Crown Agent and Queen’s and Lord Treasurer’s Remembrancer in 1974.

In the 1960s the fiscal service was relatively small comprising 80 lawyers throughout Scotland and significant level of backlogged cases was an accepted norm. But not for William Chalmers. 

Within a year of taking office he introduced the National Prosecution Service which would deal with sheriff and prepared high court cases while retaining responsibility for the prosecution of cases from government departments and local authorities. 

In those early years he identified a distinct lack of alternatives to prosecution and introduced fiscal fines and fixed penalties for less serious offences.  He went further and developed a system of warnings to alleged offenders and encouraged the introduction of schemes for certain offenders to be directed to social work and where applicable to make the prompt compensation for their crimes. The latter initiative was appreciated by victims who often became forgotten in the criminal process. During his tenure, the fiscal service went from strength to strength despite in latter years having to cope with a Westminster government intent on reducing public spending.

 

 

Retention of a Fiscal Service independent of Government

In his tenure he ensured the “Crown Office” would operate separate from the Scottish Office and achieved this by insisting on being directly funded by the UK treasury.

He was greatly saddened in his retirement, by changes in the fiscal service following devolution, in 1999 which he perceived weakened its independence.

He was was known to many people who had served with him as the “Real Crown Agent” and a fitting memorial to him would be for the “Fiscal Service” to recover its independence in a devolved Scotland.

William Gordon Chalmers, Crown Agent, born 4 June 1922, died 28 May  2003 (The Scotsman-Obituaries)

 

 

 

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Little Bo Peep is losing her sheep – Is it Et Tu for Nicola Sturgeon

 

Alex Salmond's 'female problem' - or why most Scottish women wouldn't trust him to run a tea party

 

 

2014 Independence Referendum

Nicola Sturgeon was given the honour of leading the campaign for independence.

Referendum campaigning began with polls indicating “No” voters would prevail, a view promoted by the Unionist media and given maximum media space by the BBC, who bombarded Scotland with negative publicity broadcasting many times each day that only around 25% of Scots would commit to supporting independence.

In response, in the first months of 2014, the performance of the team Nicola had put in place was formal, lacklustre and deferential with result that it was completely outfoxed at every juncture by the well-oiled machine that was, “Better Together.”

Responding to months of the Unionist Party’s gutter politicking, negative media and attacks on Scots, Alex Salmond intervened and altering the campaigning strategy gave his support to “Yes” activists to take the lead on campaigning, getting onto the streets to encourage Scots to seize the day and take their country away from a union that had failed them so badly for over 300 years.

The inspired initiative worked a treat and the “Yes” campaign fortunes changed over the summer months of 2014 so much that by late August polls declared the outcome to be too close to call.

The Unionist campaign then faltered due to internal Party political wrangling and panic set in.

Cameron responded by sidelining “Better Together” transferring all decision making to his offices in Westminster, where he implored the Queen, Dukes, Barons, Knights of the realm, heads of Governments of countless countries around the world, just about every civil servant of any note, many hundreds of business leaders and politicians to get behind him and save the Union by pulling every trick in the book no matter how devious or dishonest.

The BBC and other Unionist media outlets assiduously assisted orchestrating skullduggery and delivering it through mass media subversion resulting in the pendulum swinging back in favour of the “No” campaign. But still “Yes” voters appeared to be on a roll with no sign of momentum slowing.

Desperate measures were needed if the Union was to be saved and only a week before the day of voting and therefore “illegal”, the “Unionists” pledged, then heavily promoted “Devo Max” for Scotland, greatly increasing devolved powers, only just short of “home rule”.

The ploy worked. Only days before the referendum vote Bookmakers stopped taking bets on a “no” vote victory. People with influence in the Unionist camp had clearly been advised of the outcome of the referendum before the voters of Scotland had even been to the polling booths.

Scotland subsequently voted “No” to independence on Thursday 18 September 2014.

 

Nicola Sturgeon's “pain and anguish” over freeze in relationship with Alex Salmond | The Scotsman

 

 

The Fallout

The result of the referendum became evident not long after the polling stations closed when a resounding “no” vote was returned from a council expected to vote “yes”. A negative result confirmed by similar outcomes from other councils on the East coast of Scotland.

Unionists in Scotland and England were cock-a-hoop and could not contain their delight. Many clamoured for media airtime so that they would be able to rub salt into the wounds of Scots who had backed independence. One such person was “Ruth the Mooth” Davidson who mocked the nation with her release of information that she had been advised of the outcome before the referendum had been conducted.

Her admission was a bombshell. The only way she could have known things had gone so well for the “no” voters was if she or people known to her had opened and counted postal ballots, which had been held secure in England, at the headquarters of the company contracted by the Unionist Government to preserve the integrity of the vote.

A police investigation was completed, in the course of which Davidson confirmed sample voting had been conducted, as speculated, in England at the offices of the company contracted by the Unionist Government but no criminal act had occurred. It later transpired that the Company was owned by a Tory Minister and his associates.

The postal vote debacle further devalued the outcome of the referendum with the revelation that the total number of votes returned in many cases was the highest return in any election worldwide, by a great margin. The shenanigans convinced many Scots that the vote had been rigged in favour of a “no” vote.

Scots were also alarmed and had questioned before the referendum as to the reasons why the Chief Electoral Officer had been seconded to oversee the referendum from her permanent post in England and her subsequent actions appointing fellow English “counting officers” of similar ilk. There was further concern about her unprecedented actions banning exit polling and instructing that there would be no recounts nor appeals at any of the stations.

Cameron claimed victory the morning after and confirmed Alex had accepted defeat. He went on to give the undertaking to honour the Unionist “Vow” to deliver “Devomax” to Scotland. But he also introduced a spoiler in declaring England & Wales would also become “Devomaxed” answering the “Lothian Question” raised by Tam Dayell, but never answered. The House of Commons and Westminster would become a near irrelevance to Scotland who would not be permitted to have a view, discuss or vote on any matter exclusively concerning England or Wales.

Scots were outraged by the deceit of the Unionists who behaved dishonourably before and after the referendum and continued their protestations on social media, the only outlet permitting any expression of views which did not support the Unionist agenda.

Adding insult to injury only days after the referendum Cameron bragged to the Unionist media that “her majesty” had purred with delight when he informed her of the outcome.

A wronged nation is an unhappy nation and Scots were angry at the way in which the future was unravelling under the continued control of the Unionists and they turned in increasing numbers to the SNP demanding a different path. Independence was back on track. But under a new leader.

Within two weeks of the referendum, the membership of the SNP increased to an unprecedented level taking its total well beyond that of any political party in the United Kingdom.

Nicola Sturgeon supporters attributed the increase in the membership of the Party to her influence but in reality, it was due to the ongoing intransigence of Mundell and the Unionists who were delaying and distorting the terms of “Devomax”.

 

SNP report outlines new prospectus for Scottish independence | News | Al Jazeera

 

Alex Salmond

In the 18 September, 2014 referendum Scots rejected independence by 55% to 45%. The day after Alex announced he would be standing down as First Minister and SNP leader. In his time in office, as leader of the SNP, Alex exceeded the expectations of his political remit by improving the SNP political standing in Scotland, turning his party into the most popular in the history of devolution, always on a platform of fighting for Scottish interests.

Nicola Sturgeon would be his successor of choice, but he warned of the dangers inherent in a coronation. His advice went unheeded and Nicola was duly “crowned” not long after.

 

Scottish independence support soars among young Scots with almost three in four backing Yes - Daily Record

 

 

Nicola Sturgeon

Her position as leader confirmed Nicola addressed an audience in an auditorium packed to the gunnels with many thousands of members all fully committed to the cause of independence and expecting a rallying call to renew the fight for freedom from their leader. But they were to be disappointed.

She used her acceptance speech as First Minister to reassure her Unionist opponents her administration would be more than just a vehicle for constitutional campaigning. It would provide good government for all Scots always fully operating within the rules put in place by Westminster

She dwelled longest on her achievement of becoming the first woman to lead a Scottish Government. Her election showed “the sky’s the limit” for women and girls across the country, she told the audience before then saying:

“But it is what I do as First Minister that will matter more – much more – than the example I set by simply holding the office.”

Then, Looking up towards her niece Harriet, eight, in the gallery, she added:

“She doesn’t yet know about the gender pay gap or under-representation or the barriers, like high childcare costs, that make it so hard for so many women to work and pursue careers. My fervent hope is that she never will; that by the time she is a young woman, she will have no need to know about any of these issues because they will have been consigned to history. If, during my tenure as First Minister, I can play a part in making that so, for my niece and for every other little girl in this country, I will be very happy indeed.”

She had set her priorities for the future. The fight for independence was to be continued but within the limits of responsible governance. But her primary mission was to advance the cause of women.

What followed was a media frenzy in which Nicola was feted by women’s rights organisations worldwide including invitations to visit the USA and address female leaders and human rights activists the UN. She would become the new “Angela Merkel” and inspire women to a better future in politics and business.

 

Scottish independence: Scots living elsewhere in UK SHOULD get vote in referendum - poll | UK | News | Express.co.uk

 

 

Devo max

A cross-party commission, led by Lord Smith of Kelvin, was set up agree upon the implementation of the Unionist’s “Vow” which would be the greatest transfer of powers from Westminster to Scotland since the reopening of the Scottish Parliament 15 years before.

So what happened?

The Commission Panel concurred that their discussions and outcomes would be formalised without consultation with external bodies and went on to commit to full devolution of abortion law, the creation of a separate Scottish Health & Safety Executive, lotteries, asylum and a much greater say in the governance of the BBC. Other powers to be devolved included: income tax, personal allowances, bands and rates, employers’ National Insurance contributions, inheritance tax, the power to create new taxes without Treasury approval and a raft of other taxes. An agreed draft of “Heads of Agreement” proposals was published on 21 November 2014.

But many of the foregoing commitments were axed on the final day, at the instigation of Unionist parties, without explanation and it was revealed later that Commission panel members of Unionist persuasion, allegedly independent of Westminster were frequently on the phone taking instructions from their UK party leaders in London, with the LibDems and Tories particularly exercised about welfare proposals and Labour more focused on tax.

The commitment permitting the Scottish government to vary the components of Universal Credit, which merged Jobseeker’s Allowance, Housing Benefit, Income Support, Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, and Employment and Support Allowance, was rejected by Westminster.

The decision to devolve abortion policy had been agreed on a 4-1 basis, with only Labour opposed to it. In the draft version of the report dated 11.15am on November 26 – the final day of negotiations – stated: “Powers over abortion will be devolved to the Scottish Parliament.” But throughout that same day, Labour kept pushing its opposition in one-to-one meetings with Lord Smith, who then raised it again with the other parties. The Tory members then sided with Labour and the commitment to devolve abortion was removed.

The draft also stated: “Power to establish a separate Scottish Health & Safety Executive to set enforcement priorities, goals and objectives in Scotland will be devolved to the Scottish Parliament. The body would be required to operate within the reserved UK health & safety framework but would assess, set and achieve the health and safety objectives of most relevance and importance to Scotland.”

The policy, long supported the trade union movement in Scotland was struck out and relegated to the “additional issues” annexe of the final report, which said the Scottish and UK governments would merely “consider” changes.

Also included was the agreement that: “The power to permit the creation and regulation of new lotteries in Scotland will be devolved to the Scottish Parliament.” But the final report devolved only the power to “prevent the proliferation” of highly addictive gaming machines known as fixed-odds betting terminals.

Also missing from the final draft was the statement that had said: “There will be greater Scottish involvement in BBC governance beyond the current right to have one Trust member and the current Audience Council Scotland.”

The Commission chairman, Lord Smith of Kelvin, gave the impression he added weight to the views of the three main Westminster parties over panel members. A source saying: “The position that Lord Smith took was that if the parties who were either in the current UK government or might be in the next refused to budge on something, he went with it. The Unionist votes counted for more.”

 

Still Yes - Vote Again - Scottish Independence - 59mm Badge Referendum/Sturgeon Scotland Europe Vote Yes/No: Amazon.co.uk: Office Products

 

 

Devo max was not delivered by the Unionists who decided many important powers would remain with Westminster, including:

The Barnett Formula, setting the block grant from Westminster.

The state pension, including the pension age.

National Insurance, Inheritance Tax, Capital Gains Tax, Corporation tax, fuel duty, oil and gas receipts.

Universal Credit, the new DWP system for delivering working-age benefits, including the rates and sanctions regime- Housing benefit, maternity pay, statutory sick pay, bereavement allowance and child benefit.

The National Minimum Wage.

The Equality Act, but Scotland would be enabled to set new rules, such as gender quotas within the government.

Overall responsibility to manage risks and shocks to the economy, including retention of the power to levy UK-wide taxes if required.

 

Who decides the date of a Scottish independence referendum? | Financial Times

 

The SNP response

John Swinney, who had led the negotiations for the SNP Government said:

“We regret that job creation powers, welfare powers, control over the personal allowance or national insurance have not been delivered. We welcome the new powers – as we support all progress for Scotland – and pledge to use them when they are in place in the best interests of the Scottish people. We also welcome the acknowledgement of the ‘sovereign right’ of the people of Scotland, and our ability to proceed to independence if we so choose. But the proposals clearly do not reflect the full wishes of the people of Scotland, and also fall far short of the rhetoric from the “No” campaign during the referendum.

Harking back to the referendum campaign it is important to highlight the illegal and late intervention of former Labour Party Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, only days before the referendum and well within the “period of purgatory” when acting with the authority of the Unionist Government, he promised that in the event of a “no” vote the reward for Scotland would be “Devomax” which would be as close to a federal state as the UK could be.

Brown, no longer a statesman, was given 2 hours of BBC prime time television and a hand-picked unionist supporting studio audience to promote his illegal, game-changing ploy which had been apparently condoned by the Electoral Commission.

Regrettably, the Westminster government and other political Unionist supporters failed to deliver the powerhouse parliament the people of Scotland had been promised. Under the proposals delivered, much less than 30 per cent of Scottish taxes would be to be set in Scotland and less than 20 per cent of welfare spending would be devolved. Most significantly, the proposals did not include the job-creating powers that Scotland so badly needed to get more people into work and grow the economy, nor welfare powers to tackle in-work poverty. This was not “Home Rule” – It was the continuation of Westminster rule.

Of significance for the future the final report contained the following statement:

“Reflecting the sovereign right of the people of Scotland to determine the form of government best suited to their needs, as expressed in the referendum on 18 September 2014, and in the context of Scotland remaining within the UK, an enhanced devolution settlement for Scotland will be durable, responsive and democratic. And it is agreed that nothing in this report prevents Scotland becoming an independent country in the future should the people of Scotland so choose.”

And Scots, fed up to the back teeth with the Unionist Party’s refusal to honour their promise of “Devomax” gave notice of their determination on independence in a UK General Election only a few months later.

 

A Picture of Scotland's 56 SNP MPs : Scotland

 

The 2015 General Election

At the time of his resignation, reportedly forced on him by a small group of senior SNP managers, Alex Salmond could not have foreseen the landslide SNP victory (gained only six months later) in the 2015 General Election.

A success brought about by the disgraceful backsliding of “Unionist” politicians, their Civil Service helpers and other parties interested only in the containment of Scots within the existing political constraints.

The much-touted joint Unionist commitment to fully implement their “Vow” !!!!……to devolve powers to Scotland, just short of independence, proved to be a “lie” that broke the hearts of many Scots who had voted to remain in the Union only on the substance of “Unionist! promises.

Private polling, in the months before the election, provided an early indication of a marked upturn in the fortunes of the Party and the battle for the hearts, minds and votes of Scots was taken up, once again, by those who would not be denied Scotlands freedom from an oppressive Westminster political machine.

Alex, semi-retired from active politics by many, consulted the Party hierarchy and gained their reluctant support for his challenge for the Banff & Buchan constituency. Which he subsequently won.

An unprecedented 56 SNP MP’s were elected in a landslide, just about eliminating the Unionist Parties in Scotland. The nation had spoken. Independence should have been declared, but repeating the errors of the past, tartan wearing, bagpipe playing SNP MP’s, and their supporters descended on Westminster determined to shake the House of Commons to its core, forcing change leading to another independence referendum. But they had not consulted those that had elected them preferring to embrace the instructions of the SNP leaders who advised Scots that:

“Westminster is going through culture shock in coming to terms with the fact the SNP did so well in the election. That we are here in such strong numbers, elected as Scots who support independence, is also not lost on them. We were elected to pursue an anti-austerity agenda and more devolved powers for Scotland. and we will do just that.”

But they had chosen to misread the will of the Scottish nation which was to abandon the “Treaty of Union”. And yet again, as on previous occasions, they were to be sorely disappointed. The “old lady of parliament” simply adjusted her skirts and swept them aside with contempt.

 

How undemocratic is the House of Lords? : Democratic Audit

 

 

Consequences

The influence of a large body of SNP MP’s at Westminster had been of little matter when set against the blatant refusal by the Unionist parties to uphold their 2014 referendum promise to devolve additional powers to the Scottish parliament and when the UK held yet another General Election only a year later the Unionist campaign managers of their Scottish branches agreed to assist each other, cutting back on political campaigning where they had little chance of gaining a seat instead promoting the cause of the Unionist candidates regardless of persuasion. Tactical voting had arrived, with a vengeance. And it worked a treat.

 

Alex Salmond in 'bid to lead fresh drive for Scots independence' as he is cleared of sex assaults | | Express Digest

 

 

Peter Murrell

A complacent SNP election team, led by its Chief Executive and Campaigns Manager, Peter Murrell (Nicola Sturgeon’s husband) failed to anticipate the new tactics of the Unionists and lost many good MP’s.

And Murrell has form. Under the leadership of John Swinney, he directed the organisation and delivery of the disastrous 2003 Holyrood election, in which the Party lost eight seats which resulted in the resignation of John Swinney as SNP leader in 2004 and a bid for the leadership of the Party by Nicola Sturgeon, which she was forced to withdraw when Alex Salmond announced his intention to add his name to the list of contenders. She subsequently agreed to take on the role of Deputy leader of the Party and to “stand-in” for Alex as the Party’s “Holyrood leader” while he remained an MP at Westminster.

Few people know Murrell who is rarely seen, except at elections and at Party events, where he is nearly always present in the main auditorium, usually standing in the shadows to the side of the stage whispering instructions to Cabinet ministers as they prepare to make keynote speeches. He is a powerful general blessed with a salary in excess of £100K and a level of authority more comprehensive than the casual watcher could possibly realise.

 

Nicola Sturgeon branded 'out of step' by MSPs over trans rights comments | The National

 

 

The Feminist agenda

In the years following her elevation to the leadership of the Party Nicola turned Scottish politics on its head. Female SNP politicians and careerists now dominate the Party hierarchy witnessed in the ongoing Alex Salmon inquiry which revealed the First Minister’s Cabinet to be predominantly female, with seven of its 12 members women. And an all-female team reporting to her, comprising: Chief of Staff, Liz Lloyd, Permanent Secretary, Leslie Evans, Director of People, Nicola Richards and the Head of People Advice, Judith Mackinnon.

 

PressReader - Scottish Daily Mail: 2019-04-18 - Nicola is 'out of step' over trans rights, warn SNP feminists

 

 

Summary

There is a growing disquiet among members, supporters and independence activists that the Party has lost its way under the leadership of Nicola Sturgeon in the years since the 2014 referendum. And it is no longer the Party of independence having morphed into the Party of Government in Scotland. A role to which the Party founders never aspired.

Critics also highlight that neither Nicola nor her Party Chief Executive husband and has ever attended, fronted or supported any of the many dozens of marches and or rallies organised and delivered across the country in the past 6 years, by many hundreds of thousands of Scottish independence activists.

Conversely Nicola appears to be always available to provide public support and photo opportunities through her attendance at rallies, throughout the UK, organised by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender groups.

The priorities for the leader of the Scottish national Party should be gaining independence for Scotland. That and nothing else.

 

Sex Education in Nursery. RSHP Early Stage. - YouTube

 

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The Alex Salmond Inquiry A Can of Worms is Being Exposed But Who Will Break Ranks and Blow the Whistle

 

Holyrood's inquiry into Alex Salmond harassment saga on hold until court  case ends | Scotland | The Times

 

 

 

An update – The Alex Salmond debacle

Judith Mackinnon left her post in July 2017 and took up employment in a newly created post as “Head of People Advice for The Scottish Government”.

She reported to Nicola Richards, who had been appointed to her new role as “Director of People”. It was she who appointed MacKinnon to be the “Investigating Officer”

An early priority was to assist the process of drafting a complaint procedure and McKinnon would surely have been guided by urgent recommendations contained in the January 2017 Police Authority audit report of a similar complaint procedure she had introduced when employed in a senior personnel role by the Authority.

One particular recommendation comes to mind.

“Misconduct Regulations state that the subject officer must receive immediate formal notification of the misconduct allegation once it has been determined that an investigation is required and an investigator has been appointed but before the start of an investigation so that the subject officer can be provided with an opportunity to address it if it is their wish.”

But recent revelations are uncovering a “can of worms”

It has been revealed that on 29 November 2017, Richards and MacKinnon discussed with “Ms. A”, (one of the women who went on to make a formal complaint of sexual harassment against Alex Salmond in January 2018) the content of a draft procedure they were proposing to introduce so that harassment complaints could be actioned against former Ministers, in retrospect.

The document was sent to the Cabinet Secretariat to be retyped.

On 1 December 2017, Richards, emailed James Hynd, the Head of the Cabinet Secretariat;

“Would you be able to send me the latest version of the process? I agreed with “Perm Sec” that I would test it with some key individuals.”

Hynd, replied within the day, attaching the latest version of the draft procedure as requested. He wrote;

“Here you are.”

Richards and MacKinnon met again with “Ms. A” on 5 December 2017 and again discussed the content of the draft procedure then sought “Ms. A” confirmation that the procedures would have helped her at the time and how to put in place safeguards for the future.

Helped her with what??

Later, on 5 December 2017, Richards met with Permanent Secretary, Evans following which she worked late into the evening making changes to the document.

Just before midnight that day, she distributed the revamped document to James Hynd, “Head of the Cabinet secretariat”, MacKinnon and an unnamed lawyer. Her email stated;

“As discussed today, I’ve made some revisions to the process”

There was evidently some urgency in moving the matter forward to a conclusion, confirmed in yet another email in which Richards wrote;

“I’ve updated the timeline – and this is the final version of the policy I’ve sent to Perm Sec.”

The “air” of finality clearly suggested that the civil servant team, supported by legal opinion were confident it would be signed off and introduced.

Nicola Sturgeon approved the introduction of the procedure on 20 December 2017.

 

Comment

The decision to appoint an “investigating officer” should not have been instructed by Richards on her own!!!!  But did she?  Assuming the procedures had been adjusted following the Police Authority recommendations she would have been required to sign off the investigation process with one other, a more senior officer. That would be Evans.

And yet another titbit: On 25 August 2020, in evidence given, on oath, to the Salmond inquiry, James Hynd, “Head of the Cabinet Secretariat” stated:

“To be clear – if I was not earlier – the first that I heard about any allegations was, I think, on 24 August 2018, when there were press reports. I knew nothing before then about any complainer or anybody raising concerns. I knew nothing about the appointment of any investigating officer or about any sharing of the draft procedure with any individuals.”

Well, well, well !!!!!!!!! The worm turns!!!

 

Scotland's papers: Alex Salmond police probe - BBC News

 

 

The Police Authority and Judith Mackinnon

MacKinnon was Head of Human Resources governance for the Scottish Police Authority between 2015 & 2017.

Her prime responsibility was to provide assurance to the Authority that they were a responsible employer and a sustainable organization, achieving this goal through the introduction of efficient personnel policies aiding the professional development of management and staff.

The first years following the formation of the Authority were plagued by complaints of harassment and wrongdoing in the force, primarily led by the Unionist Press who seized on every incident, no matter the rights and wrongs of it to undermine the SNP Government.

The Government was forced to order an independent audit of the Authority’s human resources and other departments that had been subject to criticism.

In January 2017 the Scottish Police Authority Complaints Audit was published: (https://pirc.scot/media/4447/spa-audit-report-2017.pdf)

 

The Undernoted concerns were recorded

A lack of transparency and clarity surrounding the complaints processes.

The length of time taken to deal with complaints and to undertake preliminary assessments in misconduct allegations.

A lack of communication between the Authority and senior officers who were the subjects of complaint.

Communication between the Authority and senior officers was inconsistent. In some instances, subject officers had been invited to address allegations/complaints whilst in others, an invitation had not been extended.

On a number of occasions, the first officers became aware complaints had been made about them was through media coverage.

Responsibility for ordering a preliminary assessment of misconduct allegations rested with a manager who had little or no relevant knowledge or experience and expertise.

 

Conclusions

The complaint handling procedure in place is neither effective nor efficient and lacks transparency and unclear guidance resulted in organizational confusion as to whether a matter should be dealt with as a “relevant”.

The average time taken to conclude complaints and preliminary misconduct assessments is excessive and disproportionate to the level of inquiry undertaken or required of the Authority.

Decisions of the Authority lacked clarity and transparency and in many cases did not contain sufficient explanation to demonstrate how a decision had been reached.

Notifying senior officers about misconduct allegations and ‘relevant complaints’ made about them was inconsistent. In some instances, senior officers were not notified but in other cases, they were notified but sometimes at the beginning or on occasions at the end of the process.

Whilst there is no statutory requirement to notify a senior officer about an allegation or to ask him/her to comment on an allegation until after an assessment has been carried out and an appropriate investigator has been appointed.

But the subject officer must receive formal notification of a misconduct allegation once it has been determined that an investigation is required and an investigator has been appointed and before the start of any investigation.

 

A Diary of Justice & Injustice - Scotland: THE COP FACTOR: Scottish Police  Authority refuse to release documents on sex assault case top cop who wants  to be Chief Constable - now,

 

Chairpersons Statement:

Susan Deacon, (SPA chair), said the report identified a “number of important areas” requiring the authority’s attention. And it was essential that the Authority’s systems and practices were robust and worked effectively to maintain public confidence and trust.

Addressing the concerns of senior officers, procedures would be revised requiring more than one “deciding” officer to ensure key decisions were taken ensuring better oversight of the complaints process.

 

Claim civil servant who led Salmond probe is UK govt controlled is False

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John Swinney Tells the Salmond – Sturgeon Inquiry Where to Get Off

 

 

 

Committee on the Scottish Government Handling of Harassment Complaints

John Swinney:

“You wrote to three Scottish Government civil servants on 29 October asking questions in
connection with the Committee’s work. As you know, civil servants work on behalf of Ministers,
and so I am responding to your questions on behalf of the Scottish Government.

In relation to your letter to Liz Lloyd…………………………………………………

In relation to the letter to John Somers…………………………………………….

In relation to your letter to the other civil servant……………………………….

In relation to the development of the procedure………………………………..

In relation to the judicial review………………………………………………………

And finally:

“I would be grateful for your further assistance in addressing my continuing concerns
about some interactions between civil servants and Committee members at the Committee.
As we have previously discussed, civil servants play an important role in supporting Ministers
who are properly held to account by Parliament for the actions of the government. The rules
governing civil servants’ appearances are well established and understood by all parties and
normally work well, in my opinion. Scottish Ministers have a duty of care for civil servants employed by the Scottish Government. While the normal rules that usually govern the way we work together are not observed by all Committee Members, the ability of Ministers to discharge that duty of care for these witnesses is jeopardized.”

Complete letter here:(https://www.parliament.scot/HarassmentComplaintsCommittee/General%20documents/20201106DFMtoConvener.pdf)

 

Comment: Swinney takes the investigating committee to task over its questioning of three civil servants who may be in possession of information relevant to the inquiry. His assertion that civil servants report to Scottish Government Ministers and as such all questions relating to their work should be addressed to their political masters is for students of the Law to discuss and decide upon but in my opinion, his view is coloured by a need to buy time. But for what purpose?? And compare his defense of Scottish Government civil servants and their actions against the active participation of Westminster based civil servants who aided and assisted “Better Together” campaigners and foreign governments against Scots in the  2014 Referendum Campaign.

 

 

 

 Civil Servants Seconded from Westminster to the Scottish Office in 2014

Francesca Osowska: “All activities undertaken by civil servants in my Department would meet a propriety test, yet I think you would agree that in the run-up to a referendum, obviously when Ministers want to be more visible, when we need to ensure that there is a good flow of public information for example, via the Scotland analysis papers that increase our activity and that is why there was an increase between 2013-14 out turn and 2014-15 out turn.”

* But reflect on the proudly broadcast admission of the self-same Civil Servants that they had been seconded to the Scottish Office (in Westminster) and had been tasked, to provide active support to the “Better Together” campaign. Actions that brought about the defeat of Scots who wished only to be an independent nation once again. What a bunch of charlatans.

 

 

November 2014: Team of senior civil servants seconded from the Treasury to the Scottish Office to actively participate in the Better Together campaign in the 2014 referendum 

Sir Jeremy Heywood took great pleasure in awarding the team “The Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service Award 2014” in recognition of their outstanding achievements in helping defeat Scots separatists on an issue of national importance. Glowing with pride after the presentation some of the leaders were quoted:

Mario Pisani Deputy Director at HM Treasury said:

“We all had something in common, we’re trying to save the Union. We just kept it by the skin of our teeth. I actually cried when the result came in. After 10 years in the civil service, my proudest moment is tonight and receiving this award. As civil servants, you are prevented by statute from getting involved in politics. So, for the first time in my life, suddenly we’re part of a political campaign. We were actively involved in everything from the analysis to the advertising, to the communications. I just felt a massive sense of being part of the operation. This being publically recognized (at the Civil Service Awards), makes me feel just incredibly proud.”

Paul Doyle; Senior Treasury Official

“This award is not just for the Treasury, it’s for all the hard work that was done by all government departments in Westminster and in Scotland assisting the “Better Together” campaign on the Scotland referendum agenda. In all my experience of the civil service, I have never seen the civil service pull together in the way they did behind supporting the UK government in maintaining the United Kingdom. It was very special to all of us.”

Shannon Cochrane; Senior Treasury Official 

“We’ve learned that politicians are able to task civil servants to work on things that are inherently political and quite difficult. This places the actions of civil servants very close to the line of what is lawful, but it’s possible to find your way through and to make a difference.”

William MacFarlane; Deputy Director HM Treasury, (Budget and Tax Strategy)

“As civil servants, you are not allowed to get involved in the politics of the country. But, for the first time in my life, we’re part of a political campaign. We were involved in everything from analysis to advertising, to communications. I just felt a massive sense of being part of the operation. Recognition of our work being recognized (at the Civil Service Awards), makes me feel just incredibly proud.”

Note:

The secondment of 20-30 senior civil servants from the Treasury to provide professional support to the “Better Together” campaign was done without the knowledge of the Scottish Government. Adding insult to injury the Scottish Office met all of their salaries and on-costs using finance provided to Scotland. (The civil Service World) (All comments paraphrased)

 

Civil Servants and Janus Faced Illegal politicking Against Scots

Francesca Osowska, in a number of evasive statements, neglected to reveal that Civil Servants had, in a  gross misuse of public finances, been authorized at the highest level of the UK Government to actively support the objectives of the “Better Together” campaign.

She confirmed that Mundell retained access to funding sufficient to employ up to 100 whole-time equivalents (W.T.E.) posts and that salary and incidental costs arising from such employment are (top sliced) from Scotland’s block grant before the allocation of finance to the Scottish government.

The slush fund created is an ever-increasing annual financial nest egg, skimmed off Scotland’s block financial grant and used, abused by Scottish Office management for anti-devolution leaflet production, printing, and distribution and the secondment of Civil Servants from other Government Departments and employment of Special Advisors (SpAds), often well connected to friends of ministers or other MP’s.

 

 

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Scottish Civil Service Whistleblower Put to the Sword by Those Who Must Be Obeyed

 

Fisheries officer DeeAnn Fitzpatrick was gagged and tied to a chair by colleagues.

DeeAnn Kirkpatrick

 

Rough Justice – An Opening Brief

“DeeAnn Kirkpatrick, a civil servant employed in Marine Scotland, made allegations of sexual harassment, racism, bullying, and assault against some of her male colleagues.

An Employment Tribunal decided that her allegations were time spent after three years and aided and supported by senior civil servants of the Human Resources team of the Scottish Government, dismissed the allegations.

The nub is that the substance of DeeAnn’s complaints was never independently investigated.”

DeeAnn’s sister Cherry, issued a statement through the Daily Record saying:

“My sister has been left absolutely devastated and feeling betrayed. How can this be justice? It’s a disgrace. She can hardly bear to look at the photograph of herself gagged and taped to a chair. It suits Marine Scotland to say DeeAnn made it all up. She has been broken by this. My sister used to be strong, brave, and outgoing. Now she is a recluse who is afraid of her own shadow.”

A spokesperson for the Scottish Government responded with a counter-statement saying: “The Scottish Government provides reassurance that policies and processes within the Civil Service are both robust and provide the necessary support to individuals who may wish to raise concerns.”

 

Image result for Leslie Evans

 

 

DeeAnn’s case had unraveled around the time the First Minister wrote to Leslie Evans asking that she put arrangements in place to ensure Civil Servants were adequately protected from any misconduct. And that the revised procedures should contain a novel clause (applicable only to Scotland) conferring on the Scottish Government the right of “lookback without limit of time.”

Note: DeeAnn’s case was thrown out because it had not been placed before the tribunal within 3 years. A copy of Nicola’s letter of 22 November 2017 to Leslie Evans is included below.

 

Image result for Leslie Evans

 

 

22 November 2017 Nicola Sturgeon Letter to Leslie Evans

At Cabinet, on 31 October I asked you to review the Scottish Government’s policies and processes on sexual harassment so that we could be reassured that we have effective arrangements in place in light of justifiable concern about the recent examples of misconduct across public life. You have kept me closely briefed on these issues.

I know that work is moving forward quickly and that you have already put arrangements in place to ensure that any member of staff who has concerns about the way they have been treated has the support and advice they need. You have also advised me that the review is considering how best to build on the work already being done to create an inclusive and respectful culture across the organization.

As is clear from the continued media focus on cases of sexual harassment, in many instances, people are now making complaints regarding actions that took place some time ago.

I wanted to make clear that in taking forward your review, and the new arrangements being developed, you should not be constrained by the passage of time.

I would like you to consider ways in which we are able to address if necessary any concerns from staff – should any be raised – about the conduct of current Scottish Government Ministers and also former Ministers, including from previous administrations regardless of party.

While I appreciate that the conduct of former Ministers would not be covered by the current Ministerial Code, I think it fair and reasonable that any complaints raised about their actions while they held office are considered against the standards expected of Ministers.

As you complete your review I believe it would be helpful for you to update Cabinet on the conclusions you have reached and the actions the Scottish Government has taken to provide reassurance that policies and processes within the Civil Service are both robust and provide the necessary support to individuals who may wish to raise concerns. (https://www.parliament.scot/HarassmentComplaintsCommittee/Phase1FN21.pdf)

Comment: The Permanent Secretary reports to the First Minister but is accountable to the UK Government Cabinet Secretary and Leading Civil Servant in London. Any procedure brought forward by Evans to the First Minister would need to be first approved by him and mirror those in place in London and other parts of the UK since there is no deviation in the terms of employment applicable to all Civil Servants in the UK.

 

Image result for Leslie Evans

 

 

More On Events at the Employment Tribunal

The tribunal had been convened to hear evidence from Canadian born, DeeAnn Fitzpatrick, a civil servant who had lodged allegations of racism, bullying, sexual harassment, and misogynism at Marine Scotland, in Scrabster over nearly a decade from 2006. (content paraphrased for ease of reading)

DeeAnn stated:

“I have worked for Marine Scotland in Scrabster, since 2006. Over this period I spoke to managers about the racist and misogynistic behavior of some of my male colleagues and asked that they put an end to it, without success.

I was subsequently warned by those self-same colleagues to “keep my mouth shut”.

In 2010 I reported to managers that the behavior of some of my male colleagues had not improved. But again nothing was done.

Shortly after I was assaulted, gagged, strapped to a chair, photographed, and mocked.

I was eventually rescued and freed by a female colleague who told me: “they don’t want a woman, especially a foreign woman here.

A male colleague, Reid Anderson told me: “This is what you get when you speak out against the boys.

I was also labeled an “old troll” and told not to even attempt to “climb the ladder of success” and, I was mocked after I suffered a miscarriage and I received anonymous abusive cards on my birthday and Valentine’s Day between 2015 and 2017.

Managers turned a blind eye to the bullying and sexist treatment I suffered at the hands of my male colleagues.

The events have taken their toll on my health and wellbeing and I have become a recluse – I stay at home suffering from depression and have harbored thoughts of suicide. Thoughts that were so all-consuming that I contacted Dignitas in Switzerland. I had had enough.”

 

Judith McKinnon

 

The Scottish Government was solely represented by their Head of People Advice, Judith MacKinnon who advised the tribunal that the persons accused by DeeAnn of wrong-doing had decided not to face their accuser because they were scared of the intense media attention the case had generated.

She further advised that the Scottish Government supported the accused officers since the disciplinary procedures of the Civil Service bestowed on civil servants the right to remain silent and that they could not be compelled to answer questions that might incriminate themselves.

She went on to say that she had read over case notes prepared by DeeAnn’s managers, who had carried out an internal department head led investigation and that she backed their findings that DeeAnn had willingly participated in the “high Jinks” culture prevalent within the department. As such there was insufficient evidence to support DeeAnn’s allegations.

The tribunal pronounced that the allegation pertaining to the incident in which she had been strapped to a chair was time-barred since it had occurred over 3 years before.

It also found that there was insufficient evidence as to who had sent the abusive cards.

The handling of events by the Civil Service Human Resources Department of the Scottish Government was mildly criticized but DeeAnn’s allegations were not upheld.

 

What to Do When You Think You Might Be Suicidal - The Lily Jo Project

 

It was this rejection and final humiliation that forced DeeAnn to speak to the press. she told the Daily Record:

“It is difficult when you have spent your entire career fighting racism, misogyny, and bullies. Then to make matters worse when you report the incidents, you are the one that is being targeted by an ongoing campaign by senior management because you exposed what they have worked very hard to hide.”

 

Feeling Suicidal?

 

 

Nicola Sturgeon and the “Chair” Incident

Nicola issued a statement saying that she was appalled at the revelations and pictorial evidence published in the Daily Record and ordered the Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Government, Leslie Evans, to personally investigate the incident involving the chair and to report back to her.

Evans reported back (summarized):

“A comprehensive internal review has now concluded that the Scottish Government has robust disciplinary procedures to address behavior that falls below expected standards and I am satisfied that these have been followed thoroughly and objectively in relation to this incident.

A broad set of actions are underway in Marine Scotland to ensure a working environment that meets both the Civil Service Code and Scottish Government Standards of Behaviour.

I do not normally comment publicly on staffing matters but I am issuing this short statement to update the public record given the previous parliamentary and wider interest in this issue.

My unwavering commitment to ensuring a positive workplace for all employees in the Scottish Government remains.”

 

Image result for Leslie Evans

 

Comment: An incredulous statement to which nothing was added by the Scottish Government.  The lack of response from the Scottish Government was not entirely unexpected since whilst the Permanent Secretary reports to the First Minister she is accountable only to the UK government Cabinet Secretary located in London.

 

Fired for Discrimination Complaint: Wrongful Termination Suit Fails to Survive Motion to Dismiss – Blog

 

 

DeeAnn sacked

The interview with the Daily Record triggered a charge of misconduct against her and DeeAnn was ordered to attend a disciplinary hearing.

she was unable to attend on the day/date because her father had only recently died and her doctor had said she was not fit to travel.

The hearing was conducted in her absence and resulted in her being sacked.

The notice of dismissal procedure served on her was bizarre since it was carried out by two civil servants who despite travel restrictions being in place because of Covid-19 journeyed by car on a 16-hour return trip from Edinburgh to her home in Caithness to hand-deliver her dismissal letter.

The latest news is that lawyers acting on LeeAnn’s behalf confirmed that she would sue the Scottish government for wrongful dismissal, based on a defense of workplace stress and damage to her mental health and wellbeing.

 

Rhoda Grant MSP - Moray Labour

 

 

Local MSP Rhoda Grant Fights Back

The Highlands MSP used a member’s debate on condemning misogyny and harassment at Holyrood to raise the whistleblower’s case in a speech she described as “probably the most difficult” she had ever made.

Rhoda claimed that a manager at Marine Scotland had “referred to women in extremely derogatory terms,” and continued:

“I cannot repeat the language used in this chamber, but it was racist, sexist, vicious, and degrading. DeeAnn has been subject to institutional racism, sexism, harassment, and abuse at the hands of Marine Scotland, a Scottish Government Directorate. And the abuse continued despite her raising the matter at senior levels in government. Over a number of years, the oppressive behavior was constant and undermining and DeeAnn always being held to a different standard than others. I’m told by a colleague that this was deliberate and systematic conduct by others in the office and in the line of command in Marine Scotland, designed to wear her down and force her out.”

Referring to the involvement of the press that had triggered the attention of Nicola Sturgeon who concluded the chair incident to be “completely unacceptable, whatever the circumstances.” She said to the chamber:

“DeeAnn began working for Marine Scotland in 2006 and claimed problems arose when she blew the whistle on the misogynistic behavior of her colleagues towards a younger female colleague. She then became the target of abuse – and her case came to public attention last year when a photograph was revealed showing her gagged and taped to a chair.”

“The first minister’s investigation only looked at the incident with the photograph, and it was not an independent investigation. There needs to be a truly independent inquiry into DeeAnn’s treatment. And my evidence to the inquiry was fed back directly to Marine Scotland who twisted it to be used against DeeAnn. And DeeAnn has still not been informed of the findings of the investigation, and has remained away from work on full pay, but not suspended.”

Rhoda then claimed she had discovered that the “Scottish Government HR intercepted DeeAnn’s e-mails, including sensitive exchanges with her Trade Union representative”, adding that there had been “a fully hatched plan” between Scottish Government HR and DeeAnn’s line management… which showed they intended to move her to the Outer Hebrides. When DeeAnn declared that she could not move because of caring for her ailing mother, they decided to implement their previously discussed plan to dismiss her on trumped-up charges. A move that collapsed when they failed to produce the necessary evidence. And then DeeAnn was threatened with disciplinary action for going to her father’s death bed.

Rhoda said DeeAnn’s issues at work had started after returning to work following the breakdown of a “devastating” relationship with a colleague in another office, which had resulted in a miscarriage, and the issue of a non-harassment order. Her line manager was not supportive, mocked her being off with stress, and threatened to move her to work in the office where her former partner was based – despite knowing that a non-harassment order was in place. She added that she could not repeat the “extremely derogatory” terms in which he referred to women.

Rhoda spoke further saying: “DeeAnn has been subject to institutional racism, sexism, harassment and abuse at the hands of Marine Scotland, a Scottish Government Directorate,” Calling for an independent inquiry into the case, she added: “Despite me raising this at senior levels of government on a number of occasions with the previous Permanent Secretary, with John Swinney, Richard Lockhead, Paul Wheelhouse, and the First Minister – the abuse continued.

Rhoda also revealed that the original case which DeeAnn had reported was a threat to punch another female staff member by a male fisheries officer, who was allegedly encouraged by DeeAnn’s boss “to make sure it’s a good one”.

While they were initially disciplined, the men had successful appeals. Rhoda claimed: “the Scottish Government knows the Senior Fishery Officer secretly recorded the disciplinary panel’s deliberations and learned details that then led to their successful appeal.”

As well as abuse, Rhoda said DeeAnn was: “constantly being held to a different standard than others – toil, holidays, time off for compassionate leave or for medical reasons. On every occasion, she was questioned at length, but others were not. I was told by a colleague that this was deliberate and systematic conduct by others in the office and with the approval of line managers in Marine Scotland. A process designed to wear her down and force her out.”

Rhoda then asked the Equalities Minister Christina McKelvie, if she would push Scottish Government colleagues to set-up an independent inquiry. The Minister declined to say it would be “inappropriate” for her to get involved and that Rhoda should take up an offer to meet with Scottish Government officials.

 

BBC Democracy Live - Lack of business case for Police ...

 

 

The BBC Get Involved

Adding credence to DeeAnn’s allegations a reporter with the BBC said they had seen emails confirming DeeAnn had reported the alleged attack to her manager Mr. Paske, soon after it happened, but her complaints were not taken seriously. Mr. Paske told DeeAnn:  “I will have a word with Reid Anderson and Jody Paske about this. I am sure they meant no harm and that it was boys just being boys.”  When confronted by the BBC reporter, Mr. Paske, who no longer works at Marine Scotland, said:

“The allegations were false. I can’t remember the event you mention, but if it did happen, it would have been office banter, just a craic, certainly, nothing to do with abuse.”

The BBC reported further that one of the accused persons Mr. Anderson was still employed by Marine Scotland and had recently been promoted. and that he had failed to respond to the BBC’s request for comments.

A Brief Timeline of Sexual Harassment and Assault in Comics | The Mary Sue

 

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The SNP is a Movement Not a Plaything For Politicians to Abuse

 

 

Five key SNP battlegrounds to watch as candidate selections announced | The  Scotsman

 

This is a two-part article

The Scottish National Party and Me

My association with the SNP and the cause of independence for Scotland started not long after the UK and Israel invaded Egypt with the aim of reopening the Suez Canal which had been blocked by President Nasser who had taken Egypt under the wing of the USSR.

The mission was accomplished very speedily, but not without loss allowing UK and Israeli forces to establish fortified control points along the canal and to start the work of clearing shipping sunk at the mouth of the Canal by Nasser.

Then the betrayal. The USA Government fearing Russian involvement told the UK to get out of Egypt without delay and ordered Israel back to its original borders.

Both countries complied with the dictate fearing USA financial reprisals. Over the next year, USA and Russia mediated and the canal was eventually reopened but the cost of shipping negotiating it was markedly increased rendering its continued use questionable.

Anthony Eden resigned not long after the debacle and a few years after a Labour Government introduced the East of Suez policy which brought about the torturous and costly withdrawal of its military forces and influence of the UK in the Middle East and Asia.

Anti-Scottish political regimes of successive UK Governments had resulted in deprivation, hardship and the early deaths of many thousands of Scots over nearly 300 years, and the deployment of Scottish soldiers to Suez was the straw that broke the camels back for me.

The early period of my activism in the cause of independence was not without its troubles as various factions vied for political supremacy. The growth of the party was stunted when it lurched to the right and the Unionist press had a field day awarding the Party the dubious title of “The Tartan Torys”.

The SNP struggled for many a year to gain a foothold in Glasgow and the West of Scotland as Labour became the Party of choice for Scots.

After many years in the doldrums, the SNP party membership finally gained a voice and told the leadership that political posturing by party officials had to end. The SNP united under the cause of independence for Scotland and any unauthorised public airing of political dogma was deprecated.

The time for politicking would be after independence when, it was anticipated the Party might split, each faction seeking the support of the electorate.

Under the leadership of Alex Salmond, the party remained true to the cause of independence, evidenced by the adoption of centralist policies favouring neither left nor right-leaning members.

The Party benefitted from this in gaining an outright majority in the Scottish Parliament. An achievement considered impossible by Westminster Unionist politicians who had put the system in place with the purpose of preventing the SNP from ever gaining power in Scotland.

The single aim of the SNP favoured by Scots culminated, under the leadership of Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon in the 2014 Independence Referendum which only just failed to gain the support of a majority of Scots.

Believing he was doing the right thing, Alex resigned his leadership role and handed the reins of power to Nicola Sturgeon.

Days later the disgraceful conduct and outright deceit of the Westminster Government and other Unionists in the referendum campaign was revealed and brought the outcome of the referendum into disrepute. Only 6 months later the Unionists were just about wiped out in a General Election.

In January 2015 SNP membership applications increased tenfold and the surge for independence was back on the agenda.

But the period 2015-2020 has been fallow in terms of independence.

Nicola Sturgeon sidelined an active pursuit of independence for Scotland in preference for the implementation of a left-wing agenda taking the SNP firmly into the Labour Party heartland with the intention of replacing that Party after independence. In effect re-establishing two-party politics in Scotland.

The result of her abandoning the SNP principle of a united front has been increasing unrest and there is a real and present danger that the Party might split before an independence referendum can be held.

But it might just be that Nicola Sturgeon and her supporters within and outwith the SNP are involved in the active pursuit of another agenda.

In part two I will reveal what I believe that agenda to be. And whilst it may stretch incredulity it is entirely feasible. As I will prove.

 

The SNP did not deliver a radical decade in office