Out of date stats – out of date arguments

Today constituents of SNP MSPs began to received responses to the emails they sent asking them to vote for James Kelly’s repeal bill.  The responses we have seen indicate a complete contempt for their constituents and for Scottish society in general.  Every single one is based on arguments which have been put forward and rebutted several times over in the course of the past six year.  They have even been reduced to quoting a discredited Scottish Government-funded womens’ organisation who lied to the Justice Committee about the nature of their evidence.

However, in order to be helpful to those receiving the letters, we will dig out all the responses we have given over the years and provide them in FAQ format on this site over the next few days.

It is a sad day when elected members have so little respect for the people they represent that they cannot be bothered to actually respond to their concerns.  To send out such embarrassing drivel is disprespectful to the recipients but it also highlights the paucity of any real case for retaining the Offensive Behaviour Act.  If they had any real arguments at all, they certainly wouldn’t be relying on these ones.

 

New email campaign launched today

As we write the draft Stage 1 report from the Justice Committee of the Scottish Parliament is being prepared.  This report which summarises the evidence provided  in relation to the Repeal of the Offensive Behaviour and Threatening Communications (Scotland) Act 2012 will be presented to Parliament and voted on before 26 January 2018.  That vote will complete Stage 1 of the legislative process.  Stage 2 relates to any amendments and Stage 3 is the final vote on the Bill itself.

It is absolutely vital that the process does not stall this month and that every MSP whose party has committed to supporting repeal (ie all opposition parties) turns up and votes to adopt the Stage 1 report (assuming that the report supports the Bill which, given the balance of evidence, it certainly should!).

For that reason, we are calling on all opponents of the Act to email their MSPs (constituency and list) to ask that they support the repeal bill at all stages.  You can do this by simply emailing your MSP or, better yet, by visiting her/him at their local surgery.  In order to make this easier for everyone, and given the success of past email campaigns, we have once again asked the Celtic Trust to host an automated system on their website which can be accessed here on the right hand side of the page at the button marked ‘Contact your MSP’.  Please note that the email template makes no mention of the Trust or of Celtic and can be used by supporters of any club or none.  We are using the Trust site for convenience as the system is already up and running on their site and it has been used successfully in the past.

It is absolutely vital that the process does not stall at this late stage and we strongly urge you to contact your MSP and  to spread the word to others to do the same.  We know from previous campaigns how important these emails are.

So, regardless of which party your MSP belongs to or who she/he is, please take the few minutes to contact them and make it clear how you wish them to vote.

Your submission counts!

We are now four days away from the end of the public consultation on the proposal by James Kelly MSP to repeal the Offensive Behaviour Act.  We cannot emphasise enough how important this stage in the process is. Here are some tips to make the whole process easier for you. Continue reading “Your submission counts!”

New Hate Crime Stats out

10/06/16 SG stumbles about trying to relate them to football fans!

Below is the text of a press statement released by FAC this morning.  We have just been told that Justice Minister Michael Mathieson is taking one for the team today – obviously Annabelle Ewing is too sharp to fall for that one!  In saying that, he called his press conference at 9.30am so that the journos wouldn’t have time to study the new stats which were released at……9.30am! Continue reading “New Hate Crime Stats out”

FAC Petition to be discussed at Holyrood next Tuesday

email your MSP for support

06/01/16

A petition asking the Scottish Parliament to undertake the full and transparent review which the Government so shamefully failed to do last June will be discussed at the Petitions’ Committee on Tuesday 12th January at 10am.  We are asking all opponents of this dreadful legislation to email your constituency and list MSPs to ask them to support the aims of the petition. Continue reading “FAC Petition to be discussed at Holyrood next Tuesday”

Open letter to the Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs

Earlier this month (4th June) three representatives of FAC  met with the Minister for Community Safety, Paul Wheelhouse and four advisers.    Our main purpose in requesting the meeting was to find out from him precisely how the Review of the Act required by Parliament would be conducted and in what forum we would be able to present our evidence. Continue reading “Open letter to the Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs”

The Mysterious Case of the Review that never was…

We wake this morning in the knowledge that the Review, promised in the original legislation, and much awaited by those of us wishing to have our opportunity to present our detailed evidence of the fundamental flaws in the Act, is, as far as the government is concerned, done and dusted. Continue reading “The Mysterious Case of the Review that never was…”

Ministerial Statement on Offensive Behaviour Act

Following a campaign of misinformation since Friday the Minister for Community Safety, Paul Wheelhouse, will make a statement to Parliament this afternoon (Tuesday 16/6/15).  This statement, only communicated to MSPs yesterday, will probably take about 10 minutes followed by 20 minutes of questions beginning around 2.10.  Continue reading “Ministerial Statement on Offensive Behaviour Act”

Preparation for the review of the Act hots up as FAC (once again) goes to Holyrood

Representatives of FAC continued today with the latest of a series of meetings with representatives/leaders of all the main political parties in the parliament.  We have so far met with the Leader of the Scottish Greens, Patrick Harvie and today (13/5/15) we met with the Scottish Liberal Democrat MSP and Justice Committee member Alison McInnes and the Scottish Conservative and Justice Committee member Margaret Mitchell.  In addition we had a brief informal meeting with Siobhán McMahon of Scottish Labour. Continue reading “Preparation for the review of the Act hots up as FAC (once again) goes to Holyrood”