RISE Scotland call for National Rent Cap and 100,000 homes to be built.

RISE Scotland call for National Rent Cap and 100,000 homes to be built.

To 'celebrate' National Housing Day, we have launched a National campaign calling for a National Rent Cap across all rental sectors and the mass construction of 100,000 publicly owned homes.

These home will be democratically ran by the tenants themselves, built to the most energy efficient standards and rent pegged 1/5th of a minimum wage workers salary.

Drastic times call for drastic measures.

The need for this is undeniable with approximately 150,000 people on waiting lists for social housing and 40% of all households suffering from fuel poverty. Scotland faces a housing crisis. 

At the same time rents are steadily increasing, frequently ahead of inflation and ahead of average wage rises for tenants. This squeeze is increasing poverty, ill health and giving abusive landlords free reign to act outside the law.


All of this is adding to the extreme pressure put on our housing services already unable to cope, with more and more people being made homeless and even dying on the street (1 every week in Glasgow alone). We feel that in such extreme times, extreme measures must be taken.


Support RISE - Scotland's call for the Scottish Government at Holyrood to immediately enact a cap on all rent increases in Scotland in both the private and social sector. We further call for the building of 100,000  publicly owned houses for affordable rent, built to minimise fuel poverty and to stringent environmental standards.


We have done it before from 1945 to 1951 the UK government built 1.2 million publicly owned houses. This laid the groundwork for decades of improvement in people’s lives. We believe a similar house building programme can do the same again, lifting hundreds of thousands out of poverty and into prosperity.


An extensive house building scheme such as this would serve to stimulate our domestic economy, provide jobs and apprenticeships for thousands of young workers. Scotland has invested heavily on infrastructure projects to help business grow, now it’s time to invest in housing to help people grow.

 

Sign the petition here

Join RISE in the fight for housing fit for this century.

RISE Women Stand With The KJA

RISE Women Stand With The KJA

On 12th November, Turkish security forces raided and shut down the building of the Free Women’s Congress (KJA) in Diyarbakir. KJA are a Kurdish women’s group who have, for over 40 years, fought for women’s liberation, democracy and the rights of self-determination for the Kurdish people.

The group has experienced continuous harassment from the Turkish State in the past six months, with officers raiding KJA premises four times and seizing internal documents such as registration books and membership lists. KJA is the latest victim of state repression, as over 370 NGOs have been shut down in recent months by the Turkish authorities.

RISE Women stand in solidarity with the Free Women’s Congress in their struggle against the repression of Turkish State security forces. We know despite the intolerable conditions under which you are working, you will continue to resist authoritarianism and fight for the rights of your people, and your activism inspires us to continue the fight against women’s oppression wherever it is found. We stand with you, in sisterhood and solidarity, and hope that this message of support gives you strength to continue the fight for liberation and democracy.

Campaign For Equal Pay Grows

Campaign For Equal Pay Grows

Last Thursday was labelled Equal Pay Day by equality campaigners, as it effectively represents the last day of the year that women will be earning in relation to men. The gender pay gap currently sits at around 13.9%, meaning that women will effectively be working for nothing from Thursday until 2017.

Despite the fact that it has been more than four decades since the Equal Pay Act, it is clear that women are still facing significant barriers in terms of pay and employment. In a report released earlier this year by the Institute for Fiscal Studies, it was revealed that women are facing a “motherhood penalty,” where the gender pay gap widens significantly for women after the birth of their first child. Women are far more likely than men to work in low-paid and undervalued sectors of the economy such as care, and 63% of people not receiving the living wage are women.

This situation is unacceptable. RISE Women calls on the government to work with campaigners, employers and trade unions to tackle the problem of gender wage segregation and widen access for women into more senior roles in the workplace. It is time that the work traditionally done by women is given equal value. This must be done by the introduction and enforcement of a real Living Wage, which will make a positive impact upon women working in the lowest paid sectors. We also reiterate our call for unpaid carers, the vast majority of whom are women, to be paid a Living Wage for the invaluable work they do in looking after the most vulnerable people in our society whilst saving the economy billions of pounds annually. We further demand that the government provide affordable, high quality, universally available childcare that would be transformative to the lives of women with children.

RISE Central Scotland Meetings

RISE Central Scotland Meetings

RISE are hosting public meetings in Cumbernauld and Motherwell in the coming weeks to highlight some of the very important campaigns taking place in those areas.

Under the title, 'Campaigning Communities, Defending Democracy,' RISE is offering a platform to various campaign groups as part of its declared intent to build an alternative to an economic model that is failing to deliver for the vast majority of people.

Cumbernauld RISE candidate for last May’s election Kevin McVey commented:

 “It is important that space is provided to not only hear how people are challenging decisions that can damage our communities and our environment but to share experiences and ideas about building an alternative that prioritises people not profit.

 "RISE is delighted to offer that space because there are so much that these diverse campaigns share in terms of challenging the received wisdom that decision making rests only with powerful corporate and political interests.”

RISE has invited representatives from Cumbernauld’s anti-fracking campaign, save Monklands Orthopaedics A & E, campaigners against library closures in North Lanarkshire and Save Cumbernauld Tax Office.

Cumbernauld: Wednesday 26th October in the new Muirfield Community Centre at 7.30pm.

Motherwell: Wednesday 9th November in Daisy Park Community Centre, Cassels Street at 7:30pm.

Public meetings, events and regional meetings are also being organised across Scotland.

RISE: SUPPORT THE COLLEGE SUPPORT STAFF STRIKE

RISE: SUPPORT THE COLLEGE SUPPORT STAFF STRIKE

Support staff in colleges across Scotland will go on strike next Tuesday 6th September in a dispute over pay. Despite Colleges Scotland promising a return to national bargaining and an equal pay increase, Scotland’s college employers offered a £450 flat-rate increase to college lecturers, but only offered an increase of £230 to support staff.

This cost of living increase has been set at a considerably lower level for support staff in colleges around the country. Support staff including cleaning, catering, security, classroom assistants, technicians and administrative staff, have voted overwhelmingly for strike action.

Support staff are striking to demand that they are afforded the same cost of living increase as their teaching colleagues. College bosses have as yet failed to offer support staff in our colleagues a fair and equitable sum to settle the dispute. Lecturers and support staff are both affected equally by the rising cost of living and therefore any pay settlement should reflect this reality.

Chris Greenshields, chairman of UNISON’s Further Education Committee said, “Our demand is simple and fair. Pay college support staff the same amount that you gave to our teaching colleagues. We work for the same colleges, help deliver the same courses, support the same students and deserve the same cost of living increase.”

RISE fully supports the industrial action been taken by union members in their fight for fair pay in our colleges; we urge you to visit your local college and offer your support and solidarity on the picket line in any way that you can. Support staff are an indispensable commodity in student’s learning environment, and deserve fair and equal pay.

After Brexit: RISE ready to support new drive for independence

After Brexit: RISE ready to support new drive for independence

The UK has voted for exiting the European Union. The immediate consequences will be faced most by the hundreds of thousands of immigrants and refugees in Scotland and across Britain who face a more racist and intimidating environment that has been whipped up by some of the leaders on both the Remain and Leave side of the referendum campaign.

RISE stands against anti-migrant racism and xenophobia and believe a strong and united opposition is needed on the streets, in workplaces and communities throughout the UK. Everyone who has moved to this country has as much right to be here as anyone else, and we must protect and defend that right completely.

The ramifications of Brexit in Scotland - where 63% of voters and all 32 local authorities voted Remain -  make a second Scottish Independence Referendum in a timely fashion absolutely essential to end our democratic deficit in the UK once and for all.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has indicated indyref2 is highly likely to happen, and RISE believes it must happen if the will of the people of Scotland is to be respected.

We will throw our full weight behind a renewed Yes movement to make sure a Yes majority is secured. In doing so, RISE will be making the case for a socialist Scotland based on the redistribution of wealth and power away from elites and to the people of Scotland.

We will also stand with radical left parties internationally in demanding a democratised Europe and an end to austerity and racist policies towards refugees.

- No to anti-migrant racism and xenophobia

- Yes to a second independence referendum

- Yes to a democratised, anti-austerity Europe.

RISE members will be meeting locally and nationally in the coming weeks to collectively discuss how best to move these and other issues forward after Brexit.

FULL SOLIDARITY TO THE SCOTRAIL GUARDS STRIKE

FULL SOLIDARITY TO THE SCOTRAIL GUARDS STRIKE

Today the first of six 24 hour strikes begins across Scotland's trains. Scotrail's train guards have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action due to franchise holder Abellio's refusal to end the continued role out of Driver Only Operation Trains.

This proposal will not only undermine the work undertaken by hundreds across Scotland every day, it will also have a very serious impact on public safety with guards being the only Safety Critical member of staff on board a train other than the driver.

We fully support the industrial action being taken by these RMT members and would urge you to visit a nearby station's picket line  to offer your support, solidarity, and some tea and coffee, to trade unionists who are standing up for their jobs and our safety.

Gary Anderton, RMT and RISE Trade Union Network member said:

"Guards are vital to our rail network. They are responsible for your safety on trains, I fear the consequences should they no longer be there.

"We all must support these strikes as this is more than just a campaign against job loses. This is one which focuses on the most basic needs of passengers. Should Abellio win this fight, our railways will be a completely different place in the years to come."

VICTORY FOR CAMPAIGN TO KEEP CALMAC PUBLIC

VICTORY FOR CAMPAIGN TO KEEP CALMAC PUBLIC

RISE: Scotland’s Left Alliance today welcomes the decision that allows Caledonian MacBrayne to remain public.

This ferry service is one that is vital for Island communities and is often described as a “life-line service” for Scottish communities.  This decision has been well received across Scotland and RISE believe it to be an important victory in the fight for public transport to be in public hands. This moment is one where the people have won against private companies.

The campaign to keep Calmac public has been inspiring.  Not least symbolised by the iconic protests at the STUC conference in Dundee.  The RMT Union led campaign has been endorsed and supported by the Left across Scotland.  This cross party support greatly benefited the Keep Calmac Public campaign and is an example of what solidarity and unity can achieve in Scottish politics.  RISE applauds the brave work carried out by the RMT Union and are proud to have been able to give our support to their campaign.

RISE has worked closely with the RMT Union in the past and will continue to do so in the future to build good relations with our trade unions in our fight against the privatisation of public services and in support of workers’ rights.

We believe that public services should remain in public hands and not be sold to the highest bidder.  This is important to protect jobs, keep prices low and deliver an invaluable service to our communities.  We hope that this decision shall set precedent in years to come in relation to the Scottish Government’s public service policy. 

We shall continue our fight against privatisation and companies who profiteer from public services.


RISE PUBLISHES DAMNING NEW REPORT INTO OBA

RISE PUBLISHES DAMNING NEW REPORT INTO OBA

RISE - Scotland's Left Alliance has today (Tuesday) published a damning new report into the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications (Scotland) Act 2012 (OBA).

You can download it here.

The report, written by University of Glasgow PhD researcher Maureen McBride, shows how the controversial legislation is criminalising young people for actions as minor as swearing, is victimising fans from clubs outside the Old Firm, and is based on a flawed mechanism for identifying of sectarian behaviour. 

RISE opposes the OBA and has called for its repeal. 

Commenting, Cat Boyd, RISE's top candidate in on the Glasgow regional list, said: 

"The OBA is a disastrous piece of legislation and this report demonstrates that. It shows how this misguided law has criminalised young football fans for behaviour that is very far from offensive. 
"RISE stands wholesale against the OBA. If elected to Holyrood on Thursday, we'll do everything we can to overturn it."

Maureen McBride added:

"I wrote this report because it became evident very early on in my research that the Act had indeed ‘grown arms and legs’ and was being used in a worryingly broad manner. 
"I think that the supposedly high levels of ‘public support’ for the Act are based firstly on flawed polls and secondly on a general lack of understanding of what the Act actually is. 
"I hope this report goes some way to raising awareness about a piece of legislation that is effectively criminalising young working-class fans attending football matches."

RISE COMMENT ON LATEST FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REVELATIONS

RISE COMMENT ON LATEST FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REVELATIONS

Commenting on today's revelation, as reported by the Ferret, that Rosemary Agnew, the Scottish Information Commissioner, bowed to Scottish Government pressure to alter one of her decisions, James McAnaney, RISE's education spokesperson, said:

"These revelations are absolutely damning. They show that the Scottish Information Commissioner Rosemary Agnew has not met her own standards of political impartiality.

"It is now clear that Agnew faced pressure from the Scottish Government to change her decision relating to tuition fees in 2013. The Commissioner initially resisted this pressure and even felt strongly enough to invite the government to pay for legal advice on the matter. She also makes clear her view that acquiescing to the government's demands would compromise her independence.

"But in the end, and under clear pressure from the Scottish Government, she agreed to their demands.

"Given her office's recent correspondence with RISE, which revealed that the SIC intended to observe purdah rules irrelevant to its conduct, serious questions must now be asked about other decisions Agnew has made, including her decision to delay a request for information on national standardised testing.

"There are now real doubts about Agnew's ability to remain impartial and independent in the face of government pressure.

"To be clear, however, this story does not end there.

"Agnew described the Scottish Government's conduct in this matter as as 'inappropriate'. It is vital that we are made fully aware of the nature of that conduct. We also need to know the name of the Minister, or Ministers, on whose behalf this pressure was applied.

"We also need to know exactly why it was so important that the information in question was kept secret, particularly given the controversy surrounding the Scottish Government's claims regarding the application of tuition fees to English students in the event of Scottish independence. Why did the government fight so hard, and put the Scottish Information Commissioner in this position, in order to keep the truth out of  the public domain?

"Given the seriousness of these allegations nothing short of full disclosure is acceptable."

The Ferret's story can be read here: https://theferret.scot/information-watchdog-secrets/

Another Scotland Is Possible - A Report on the Future of Scottish Education

Another Scotland Is Possible - A Report on the Future of Scottish Education

RISE - Scotland's Left Alliance has today released a major new report on the future of the Scottish education system.


Another Scotland is Possible - A Report on the Future of Scottish Education, written by RISE Education Spokesperson James McEnaney, examines existing policy in a range of key areas including: Curriculum for Excellence and the New Qualifications; the issue of teacher workload and Continuing Professional Development; the imposition of National Standardised Testing; the school starting age; LGBTI+ Inclusive Education; Further Education; and private schools.

The report makes a number of specific recommendation for reform, including:

  • A simplified approach to Curriculum for Excellence in order to address the audit-based approach that has come to dominate schools
  • The government should abandon plans to impose National Standardised Testing and apologise to the teaching profession for this misguided proposal
  • An independent enquiry into the previous government's Further Education reforms
  • The raising of the school starting age
  • The stripping from private schools of tax benefits associated with their anomalous charitable status


Commenting, McEnaney said:

"This report is the most detailed look at the Scottish education system to have been published during this election campaign.

"Following on from our manifesto, which outlined a different approach to the problems facing Scottish education, we wanted to provoke a deeper debate about the direction in which we should be going.

"The rhetoric on offer from other parties regarding the so-called 'Attainment Gap' will do nothing to reduce educational inequality in Scotland. We believe - and this report argues - that the key to addressing this problem is to properly recognise its origins in the widespread social and economic equalities that blight our country.

"The report argues that if we are serious about improving Scottish education, we should focus on addressing those aspects of our system which magnify, rather than mitigate, pre-existing problems.

"We are also absolutely clear that placing full trust in the teaching profession is a prerequisite for progress. Unless we change the way we treat our teachers we will continue to fail our children.

"One of the key sections of this report concerns the unacceptable and unsustainable demands being made of the teaching profession. Given that the Scotland's largest teaching union has rejected government proposals to tackle this issue, and is now set to ballot its members on a boycott of SQA-related activity, our call for teachers to be trusted to do their jobs is more relevant than ever. This time the government must take the concerns of the teaching profession seriously."

"The report also considers a number of potential structural changes, the most radical - and beneficial - of which would be an increase in the school starting age from four to seven."

 

DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT HERE 

RISE ON LABOUR'S MANIFESTO: 'LAST DITCH EFFORT FROM A DYING PARTY'

RISE ON LABOUR'S MANIFESTO: 'LAST DITCH EFFORT FROM A DYING PARTY'

Commenting on the launch of Scottish Labour's Holyrood manifesto this morning, Cat Boyd, RISE's lead Glasgow candidate, said:

"On the surface, there are elements of Labour's manifesto that RISE welcomes. Ultimately, however, Kezia Dugdale's sudden conversion to socialism represents a last ditch effort from a dying party.

"Labour were in government for eight years at Holyrood and burdened Scotland with massive PFI debts and crumbling schools. During the 2014 independence referendum, they stood side-by-side with the Tories, putting the Union before the working people of Scotland.

"Dugdale presents herself as a late convert to Corbynism, but less than a year ago she argued that his leadership would leave Labour 'carping from the sidelines.' Her new-found socialists rhetoric is further undermined by the fact that Anas Sarwar, a Blairite millionaire, is currently measuring the drapes in her office.

"RISE, by contrast, has set-out a clear and consistent socialist programme.

"A £10 per hour minimum wage, higher taxes on the rich, universal free public transport, and a living income for Scotland's carers - these policies would have a transformative effect on the lives of thousands of Scots.

"Dugdale is desperately trying to rescue her disastrous campaign with a few token leftwing gestures. It won't work. Yes voters and independence supporters can’t trust the party of Anas Sarwar, Jackie Ballie and Blair McDougall.

"Scottish Labour politicians know they are on the way out and will say anything at this stage to avoid finishing third to the Tories.

"We are making a direct appeal to Labour voters to give their second votes to RISE, Scotland's real socialist alternative.

 

RISE STATEMENT ON HILLSBOROUGH DISASTER INQUEST

RISE STATEMENT ON HILLSBOROUGH DISASTER INQUEST

RISE is delighted to note the verdict delivered yesterday at the Hillsborough Disaster Inquest, confirming to the world what everyone else already knew to be fact – that 96 football fans were unlawfully killed, through no fault of their own.


The 27 year long campaign for ‘Justice For The 96’ has been an outstanding testament to the courage of the campaigners. Despite the outrageous lies, smears, media slander and disgraceful establishment cover-ups, the victims of this greatest miscarriage of justice have never wavered in their pursuit of the truth. RISE takes immense inspiration from all the campaigners in their unrelenting and unbroken spirit.

RISE stands fully behind the exonerated in their endeavour to bring forth formal criminal prosecutions. Those who have lied, misled and deliberately covered up the events of Hillsborough that day, must be held fully accountable for their actions.

Throughout these 27 painstaking years, police and state collusion has reinforced the misguided view that somehow Liverpool fans were culpable in the death of 96 of their own. RISE hopes that the verdict from yesterdays inquest can offer some form of closure for the families, and that their courageous campaign for justice is almost at an end.

RISE STATEMENT ON SCHOOL MEALS

RISE STATEMENT ON SCHOOL MEALS

Glasgow City Council last week implemented a shocking 100% price rise for use of their school breakfast club facilities, increasing the price from £1 per day to £2. This is yet another move which is certain to hit working class families hard, especially those whose wage lifts them just out of the bracket for free school meal entitlement.


Breakfast clubs are an essential service for the modern workforce, allowing parents to drop their children off for school at 8am, all the while knowing they will be safe and will receive a decent breakfast to start the day.

To increase the cost of this by 100% is potentially devastating for the thousands of families across the city who rely on this service, and who have already been hit hard by years of austerity.

RISE stands firm behind the belief that school meals are a right, not a privilege, and that access to them should be universally accessible to all. It is outrageous that Glasgow City Council continues to deem it appropriate to pass the burden of austerity to working class families, as part of a budget which sees £130 million cut from public service funds.

So much of the education debate in Scotland focuses on short-sighted and misguided ideas around reducing educational inequality. That's why cuts to breakfast clubs - which help to mitigate the impact of poverty upon young people - are so utterly shameful.

At a time of increasing austerity which has put incredible pressure on working people all over Glasgow, a Labour-run council elects to punish them even more. Labour have brazenly claimed to be the real voice of the Scottish Left - the actions of Glasgow City Council show us just how hollow that claim really is.

SCOTLAND'S UNPAID CARERS DESERVE A LIVING INCOME

SCOTLAND'S UNPAID CARERS DESERVE A LIVING INCOME

Following the launch of its manifesto this morning, RISE - Scotland's Left Alliance has published additional details of one of its key policy pledges.

In a briefing document, RISE argues that Scotland's growing army of unpaid carers are an indispensable part of Scottish society and should receive significantly more support than they do at present.

The document outlines a number of proposals that would dramatically improve the lives of Scotland’s unpaid carers, including:

  • The creation of a Living Income for Unpaid Carers (LIC), set at £200 per week, for all those caring for 35 hours a week or more.
  • The provision of this income regardless of whether recipients have any other earnings or are in full time education.
  • The provision, guaranteed in law, of free annual health checks to all registered carers.
  • The introduction of a mandatory right to paid care leave of 10 days enforceable on all employers.

RISE estimates the LIC would cost £1.78bn annually. This would be funded by a combination of tax changes, including a higher rate of tax on the richest earners in Scotland, a new income-based Scottish Service Tax to replace the Council Tax, and the introduction of a Whisky Tax on whisky manufacturing companies.

Commenting, Deborah Waters, a RISE Glasgow candidate and long term unpaid carer who spoke at the manifesto launch, said:

"Carers are so essential to Scotland's economy. It's a scandal in modern Scotland that the carers' allowance is the lowest benefit in the UK at just £62.10 per week.

"Carers often ignore their own health problems to care for someone they love. Unfortunately the UK government ruthlessly exploits this.

"The Scottish Government now has an opportunity to radically improve the lives of unpaid carers throughout the country."

NHS research suggests that it takes an average of two years for unpaid carers to acknowledge their role, given the difficulty in separating their caring role from their relationship to friends or family. RISE plans to meet with local carer groups across the country to discuss the policy and find out how they can assist with raising awareness.

Deborah Waters added:

"Many carers that they can't go on as things are.

"The harsh reality is that many more carers are reaching breaking point with their own health breaking down.

"The cuts by national and local government mean that services used by those we care for are being decimated.

"Carers should be appreciated so they can feel more human again. Caring is at the heart of what makes us a decent society

RISE LAUNCHES MANIFESTO WITH RALLYING CRY FOR CHANGE

RISE LAUNCHES MANIFESTO WITH RALLYING CRY FOR CHANGE

'Scottish politics has changed. It's time for the parliament to change with it.'

RISE - Scotland's Left Alliance launched its first election manifesto this morning at the Science Centre in Glasgow.

The event was attended by dozens of RISE activists and by print and broadcast media from across the country.

The manifesto details key election policies, including a commitment to a second independence referendum within the lifespan of the next Holyrood parliament, a living income for Scotland's carers, and a new 60 per cent rate of tax on the richest people in Scotland.

The launch represents a milestone for RISE, which was formed in August of last year, and adds to the growing momentum of its inaugural campaign.

Commenting, RISE National Organiser Jonathon Shafi said:

"In 2014, as a result of the independence referendum, Scottish politics changed fundamentally. It is time for the Scottish Parliament to change with it.

"RISE embodies the spirit of grassroots radicalism that gripped progressive Scotland two years ago. If elected to office on 5 May, we will take that sense of radicalism into the corridors of power."

Colin Fox, RISE's lead candidate in the Lothians, added:

"At this election, RISE is the only organisation with a clear strategy for independence. We support a second referendum within the lifespan of the next parliament, with or without Westminster's consent.

"Independence supporters face a choice next month: do they want intransigent unionist politicians sitting on the opposition benches or RISE MSPs ready to chart a path to independence?"

And Cat Boyd, RISE's lead candidate in Glasgow, said:

"Today we set-out a strong set of policies designed to tackle some of the most urgent problems Scotland faces. A living income for Scotland's carers, a higher rate of income tax on the richest, and a new £10 per hour minimum wage - these proposals would transform life for millions of Scots.

"RISE is a socialist organisation. If you want socialist voices in parliament articulating socialist ideas and socialist arguments, vote RISE on 5 May."

RISE STATEMENT ON ERS RESEARCH

RISE STATEMENT ON ERS RESEARCH

Commenting on today's report in the Sunday Herald which suggests that voting twice for the SNP in the upcoming Holyrood election could help the anti-independence parties, Cat Boyd - RISE's lead Glasgow candidate - said:

"This report makes a compelling case for pro-independence voters to back RISE with their second votes.

"The Scottish Parliamentary electoral system is designed to guard against the dominance of one party. If the SNP sweep the constituency ballots, the system will compensate other parties.

“This election is important. Independence supporters will decide whether there are more diehard unionist politicians at Holyrood or whether there will be RISE MSPs ready to chart a path to independence. This hinges on how pro-independence supporters vote on the second ballot paper.

"In some respects, RISE represents the heart of the independence movement. We are a diverse alliance of forces fighting for change in Scotland now and a radical vision of independence in the future.

"John Curtice has made the case that we need to vote with our heads as well as our hearts.

"I'd rather people voted for RISE on the second ballot than let unionist parties in by the back door. Labour and the Tories have done nothing to earn the respect of ordinary people, nor can they represent the aspirations of millions of voters.

"RISE, by contrast, is working hard in communities across Scotland. In recent weeks, our campaign has picked-up real momentum, both in the media and on the ground.

"I hope that the pro-independence movement will be pro-active in this election, and I hope that they're inspired enough to vote for RISE on the second ballot.

"A vote for RISE can appeal to both the head and the heart. It will keep the unionists out and it keep our fight for change alive.

“Put simply: we’re asking people to vote for what they believe in. If you still believe that another Scotland is possible, then vote for RISE."

TRADE UNION SUPPORT FOR RISE GROWS

TRADE UNION SUPPORT FOR RISE GROWS

RISE has today welcomed the decision of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers' Union (RMT) to back the Left Alliance in the West of Scotland for the upcoming Holyrood election.

The news confirms growing levels of support for RISE in the labour movement. In February, leading UNITE officials publicly endorsed RISE as the Alliance that best represents workers' interests in Scotland.

Colin Turbett, RISE's lead candidate in the West of Scotland, said:

"I'm very proud that the RMT have agreed to back RISE West Scotland's bid for election to Holyrood.

"Our supporters have been very active in their brilliant campaign to keep CalMac public and we shall continue that fight.

"The ongoing PFI schools fiasco shows what happens when profit drives public services.

"Our commitment to reverse the damage of such policies is absolute."

COUNCIL LEADER BURNS MUST GO OVER EDINBURGH SCHOOLS SCANDAL DEMANDS COLIN FOX

COUNCIL LEADER BURNS MUST GO OVER EDINBURGH SCHOOLS SCANDAL DEMANDS COLIN FOX

RISE Lothians candidate Colin Fox has demanded the resignation of Edinburgh council chief Andrew Burns over the closure of 17 city schools as too unsafe to be used.

Fox said:

  “ Andrew Burns hand wringing about the revelation that 17 city schools, built under the notorious PFI scheme which have been found to be too dangerous to use, rings hollow.

“Burns was centrally involved when these discredited PFI deals were struck and has, with his colleagues, supported their use despite warnings that they were both hugely expensive and took school building outside council control.

“Now we discover that not only  is PFI a rip off it but it has saddled parents, staff and students  with unsafe buildings that look like being closed indefinitely.

“Councillor Burns cannot duck this issue by blaming ESP  since they were appointed by councillors who accepted that the PFI process  involved secrecy and a loss of council control with the results we now see.

“Faced with the monumental crisis his policies are now imposing on Edinburgh schools Cllr Burns should take the only honest course and resign as council leader.”