Reform Scotland News: 17 August


Daily Political Newspaper Summary: 17 August 2015

All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is highlighted and underlined.

In addition to the newspaper stories outlined below, further news coverage can be found online at BBC News Scotland, STV News and Sky News



Labour leadership: Former Labour PM Gordon Brown has warned of the potential impacts of a victory for Jeremy Corbyn; Lesley Riddoch comments on Mr Brown’s speech. Meanwhile, shadow health secretary Andy Burnham has claimed to be the candidate that could unite both factions of the Labour party; David Torrance comments on the need for Labour to find a centre ground. Lastly, George Kerevan follows Corbyn’s trajectory in Labour and his relationship with Scottish Labour (Scotsman pages 1-4, Herald page 6, Times page 6, Daily Telegraph page 1, FT page 2, National page 4, Express page 6, Record page 2, Sun page 1, Lesley Riddoch in the Scotsman, David Torrance in the Herald, George Kerevan in the National).


Labour Scotland: New leader Kezia Dugdale has said that Scottish Labour can remain autonomous while being part of the wider UK Labour party, regardless of the successful candidate. She has also promised to raise the debate on Trident at the party’s next conference. Alan Cochrane reflects on the future of Scottish Labour, while Gillian Bowditch comments on the challenges faced by Ms Dugdale (Scotsman page 5, Herald page 1, Times page 2, Daily Telegraph page 1, FT page 2, Express page 6, Record page 2, Sunday Times page 1, Alan Cochrane in the Telegraph, Gillian Bowditch in the Sunday Times).


Fringe Festival: The event headquarters were recently occupied by protesters criticising BP’s sponsorship of the Festival (Scotsman page 3).


Police Scotland: The Scottish Police Authority (SPA), which oversees Police Scotland, has been criticised for not having met since late June despite the M9 incident.  At the same time, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has become the third external watchdog to scrutinize the handling of the incident (Scotsman page 12, Herald page 1).


Asylum seekers: Scotland’s Social Justice Secretary Alex Neil has promised financial support to asylum seekers if immigration is devolved to the Scottish Government (Scotsman page 12, Herald page 6, Express page 5, Record page 13).


Benefit sanctions: Campaigners have questioned the benefit sanction system as half of the sanctions appealed have been overturned, with Scots being the hardest hit (National pages 1-2, Record page 6).


T in the Park: Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie has called on Nicola Sturgeon to investigate possible cronyism in the funding of the music festival (Herald page 6).


Bute House Chandelier: A chandelier hanging in the First Minister’s official residence is suspected to have been looted from Nazi Germany. A further investigation has been launched to reveal its provenance. (Scotsman page 7, Herald page 4, Sun page 2, Express page 9, National page 10, Times page 7, Telegraph page 2).



Inflation: The Consumer Price Index (CPI) figure for July’s inflation is still 0%, presumably due to the strength of the pound and the fall in the oil price (Scotsman page 6).


Property market: A new report from ESPC has shown an 8.8% drop in the number of homes for sale in Edinburgh and the Lothians, widening the gap between supply and demand for homes (Scotsman page 9).


Executive pay: The High Pay Centre has released a new report showing an increased pay ratio of 183:1 between FTSE-100 chief executives and the average wage of their employees (Scotsman page 10, Herald page 9).


Local government

Glasgow City Council: After losing the contest for the deputy leadership of the Scottish Labour Party, Gordon Matheson is still aiming to become an MSP and he is expected to stand down as leader of Glasgow City Council (Herald page 6, National page 4).



Stem Highers: Fewer pupils are taking maths and core sciences subjects at Higher level, emphasising the shortage of numeracy skills in Scotland (Herald page 9).



LGBT discrimination: According to Stonewall Scotland, almost a third of health and social care staff in Scotland have heard their colleagues make negative comments about the LGBT community (Scotsman page 9).


Mental health: Liberal Democrat MSPs have called on the SNP for a plan of action tackling the lack of resources of local health boards to deal with mental health patients (Scotsman page 14, Herald page 4).


NHS Scotland: Brian Monteith reflects on the future of the NHS in Scotland (Brian Monteith in the Scotsman).


Health charities: The closing down of some charities’ Scottish offices, such as Asthma UK, has raised fears of the future of health charities in Scotland (Herald page 4).



ScotRail delays: Amidst criticism of rush-hour train delays, the ScotRail Alliance has claimed that nine out of 10 ScotRail trains arrive within five minutes of scheduled times (Record page 14).