Glasgow City Council Agenda - 11 May 2023, 11:00 Help

A meeting to be held at City Chambers, Glasgow at 11:00 on 11 May 2023.

Number Item
1Minutes of Council meeting of 30th March 2023 (Print 1, pages 1 to 32). View Papers
2Committees' minutes - Submitted for information and approval as a correct record only. View Papers
3Education Appeal Committee - Update to Terms of Reference - Report by Director of Legal and Administration. View Papers
4Changes to committees etc.
5Representation on outside bodies:-

City Property Glasgow (Operations SL3) LLP - Appoint Paul Leinster as Chair, Richard Bell, Zen Ghani, Rashid Hussain, Christy Mearns, Pauline Barclay, Managing Director City Property (Glasgow), Ian Robertson, Director of City Development and Morag Johnson, Director of Financial and Business Services. View Papers
7Questions. View Papers
8Notice of motions.
(a)Motion by Bailie Annette Christie:-

"Council notes that 9th May was Europe Day, an annual celebration of peace and unity in Europe. Council recognises that since it committed to do so in a motion of May 2018, Glasgow has continued to actively engage with European partners, consolidating relationships, garnering accolades and positioning itself as a lead European city. Council believes that this work remains an essential tool in mitigating the impact on Glasgow and Scotland of the immense social, economic, cultural and reputational damage inflicted by Brexit.

Council recalls that in 2019, the European Commission Cultural and Creative Cities Monitor ranked Glasgow as the UK's top cultural and creative city for cultural vibrancy, creative economy and ability to attract creative talent and stimulate cultural engagement, and also ranked Glasgow as Europe's leader for 'openness, tolerance and trust'. Council further notes that the city is celebrating its second European Capital of Sport in 2023 and using this status to increase sporting opportunities and improve lives, and agrees that this should also be a vehicle for further strengthening European connections between our peoples.

Council notes that, despite Brexit, Glasgow has continued to participate in European projects - recently concluding RUGGEDISED smart city project funded under the European Union's Horizon 2020, URBACT ROOF and Global Cities for Global Goals projects amongst others - and secured membership of the European Commission's Commission Mission for 100 Climate Neutral and Smart Cities. Council recognises that much of this success has been due to our participation in the Eurocities network which brought together the pan European Mayors Alliance for the European Green Deal to raise the collective voice of local governments with EU institutions and has positively influenced pan European efforts on the Climate Emergency. Council notes the launch of Glasgow's Just Transition Skills Plan and that this coincides with the launch of the European Year of Skills and believes that this synergy provides an opportunity to continue sharing Learning for Sustainability and the shift to a green and digital economy.

Council notes our recent hosting of the Eurocities network Working Group on Children & Young People and encourages the city to use this as a means of ensuring Glasgow's children benefit from European learning and connections hampered by the UK's withdrawal from the ERASMUS+ opportunities.

Council believes that Brexit has directly contributed to the cost-of-living crisis and decline in living standards across the UK and to daily hardship for thousands of Glaswegian households and recalls that almost 67% of Glaswegians who voted in the 2016 referendum voted to remain in the EU and have had their European citizenship removed against their will. Council agrees that until such time as Scots' democratic choice of EU membership is restored to them, Scotland should at least have access to the EU single market in the same way that Northern Ireland does, and that this would help to grow the economy, ease trading facilities with the EU and go some way to address the democratic deficit in Scotland caused by the Brexit referendum and events since.

Council instructs the Chief Executive to write to the Prime Minister and European Commission President highlighting: Glasgow's continuing commitment as a European city and to our European citizens; our position at the heart of European networks; Glasgow's unrivalled reputation as a leading UK research and innovation centre; the alignment of our Just Transition Skills Plan with the aims of the European Year of Skills; and underlining that Glasgow is a proud European city, open to our European and global neighbours for business, for study, for visitors, for collaboration, and for people from around the world continuing to make our city their home." View Papers
(b)Motion by Councillor George Redmond:-

"Council notes: that April 2023 marked 10 years since the establishment of Police Scotland; notes Police Scotland's successes including a number of high-profile, high-risk events such as COP26 and its work throughout the Covid pandemic; and pays tribute to the dedication and tenacity of our Police Officers in tackling crime.

However, Council regrets: that Scotland now has the lowest number of police officers since 2008, that Officers in Scotland are the only officers in the UK not routinely equipped with body cameras; that figures, published in January, demonstrated a quarter of 101 calls were abandoned; and expresses its deep disappointment that the family of Sheku Bayoh are still without justice 8 years later.

Council believes: that the Police is an important institution in our communities; that Police Scotland is not immune to the institutional challenges faced by other police forces in the world; and that the Police can function best when they are held to account by local communities and local people.

Council therefore resolves to write to the Scottish Government to note Councillors' frustrations at the lack of local, operational accountability of policing services due to these services being delivered at a national level; reiterates its belief that policing is a local service; reiterates its belief that local services should be subject to local, democratic accountability; and, therefore, calls on them to review the local accountability of policing as part of the New Deal for Local Government." View Papers
(c)Motion by Councillor Dan Hutchison:-

"Council notes that Foster and Kinship Carers provide an essential service to Glasgow's children and allow us all to meet our obligations as corporate parents and that this is of the highest priority following the care review.

Council further notes that these carers have seen their incomes fall in real terms over the past decade and that this is not in the best interests of children in their care. Whilst some carers saw an increase in their allowances as a result of the 2021/22 budget, those with children over the age of 10 have remained frozen for more than a decade. Council also acknowledges that at the Foster and Kinship Carer summit held on the 1st of February it was clear that the current cost of living crisis is severely impacting the carers and the families that they care for. Council therefore renews its call for the Integration Joint Board to restore inflation-linked increases to allowances for all foster and kinship carers, and to continue to lobby the Scottish Government for funding to deliver this.

Council believes that the situation in respect of foster and kinship carer allowances has arisen, in part, due to a lack of formal partnership working between carers, collectively, and Social Work officers. Council agrees that the most effective method of partnership working with these carers, in particular relating to their rights to collective bargaining, would be through formal recognition of their chosen trade union(s). Council further agrees that enabling collective bargaining is the best way forward for the carers but also the children in their care, and agrees that the children's wellbeing must continue to be of central importance in these discussions.

Council therefore instructs the Director of Human Resources to submit a report to the City Administration Committee setting out the legal, financial, strategic and operational implications of entering into a formal recognition process in order that Committee can consider whether to begin that process with the Independent Workers of Great Britain Trade Union who represent the largest body of Foster and Kinship Carers at Glasgow City Council for the purposes of collective bargaining. Such a report should be submitted to the City Administration Committee by September 2023." View Papers
(d)Motion by Bailie Roza Salih:-

"Council recognises that Lift the Ban is campaigning to restore the right to work for everyone waiting for more than 6 months for a decision on their asylum claim. Council further recognises that in December 2019 it agreed on calling the UK Government to amend legislation and has raised this and other matters consistently with UK Ministers.

Council believes that all people seeking protection in the UK should be able to work, make the most of their potential and provide for themselves and their families, similar to Ukrainians who have the Right to Work. Council further believes restrictions on right to work can lead to extremely poor mental health outcomes, and a waste of potentially invaluable talents and skills both for the economy and wider society, enabling them to integrate in their local community. Council agrees allowing people seeking asylum the right to work would therefore lead to positive outcomes for those seeking asylum in and for the local and national economy.

Council welcomes that in 2022 the Shortage Occupational List was expanded to include positions like social care, nursing, opening the possibility of employment for people seeking asylum who would not otherwise be able to carry out jobs previously. Council also welcomes the UK Migration Advisory Council report in March 2023 into labour shortages in the construction and hospitality sectors and the potential use of the immigration system as a response.

Council notes that the UK Migration Advisory Council is currently conducting a Call for Evidence 2023 and that this provides an opportunity to promote the right to work and also ensure that Glasgow and Scotland's economy could benefit from this. Council further notes that Scotland's Urban AGE 2022 report, supported by the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce amongst others called for immigration policy to be devolved to ensure cities and regions have access to the workforce they need to prosper and requisite skills and labour force to deliver on our climate pledges.

Council resolves to continue supporting the Lift the Ban campaign, calls on the UK Government to give people seeking asylum the right to work, and instructs the Chief Executive to respond to the current MAC Call for Evidence2023, noting the AGE 2 report and other evidence of how migrants could benefit Glasgow's economy, and, that the right to work is a fundamental human right." View Papers
(e)Motion by Councillor Soryia Siddique:-

"Council notes that:

1. Approximately 45% of the world's polysilicon is made in the Uyghur Region under conditions of forced labour. Seeing as this polysilicoin can be blended at the ingoting and wafering stage, and upwards of 95% of the world's ingots and wafers are made in China, therefore experts indicate that as much as 97% of solar panels could contain materials made by millions of Uyghur forced labourers.

2. That the UK's plans to double its solar capacity by 2030 and expand the council led 'Solar Together' scheme put public bodies at greater risk of long-term complicity in modern slavery practices.

3. That solar power is an important strand of Glasgow's work to tackle the climate emergency, but that without putting in place the appropriate safeguards there is a significant risk of purchasing solar panels from suppliers that are very likely to have forced labour in their supply chain.

4. That solar panels produced in the Uyghur region are also contributing to climate change due to the use of fossil fuels and lax environmental standards across the region. On the path to securing a 'just transition' to renewable energy, decision-makers must consider the environmental and human impacts of clean energy production on frontline communities in the Global South. renewable energy requires solutions which integrate climate and environmental justice. Finding alternative solar suppliers is a humanitarian priority as well as an environmental one.

5. That current UK laws relating to supply chain due diligence, including the Modern Slavery Act of 2015, have proved unable to curtail the infiltration of forced labour made solar panels into the supply chain, let alone start, to turn the tide of exploitation.

Council believes:

1. That Glasgow City Council should not purchase solar panels that are made from polysilicon or other materials sourced from the Uyghur region.

2. That, even if complete eradication of tainted solar panels is not achievable in the near term, it is possible to make improvements in procurement and contract management to reduce the association of Glasgow City Council with forced Uyghur labour.

3. That, within a year, this Council should have sufficient measures in place to ensure their responsible procurement strategy tackles the problem of forced-labour-made panels.

Council therefore resolves to:

1. Instruct Officers to present a report to the appropriate Committee, outlining how the council's Sustainable Procurement Strategy can be adapted to reflect a responsible Uyghur forced labour policy, on the basis of UNISON's template.

2. To engage with partners, including the Stop Uyghur Genocide campaign, to develop a plan of improvement including:

(1) Start dialogue with existing suppliers to review their entire supply chains from quartz to panels, then discuss and agree an action plan.

(2) Raise the issue to test suppliers' attitudes to finding alternative producers during pre-market engagement, when advertising for tendering and during tender interviews.

(3) Review existing practice at contract stage, to insert forced labour specific contract clauses, including clauses for exiting for non-compliance.

(4) Consistently manage the contract by following up the action plan progress and if necessary, invoking the contract clauses.

3. Raise the issue of solar procurement amongst local Parliamentarians." View Papers
(f)Motion by Councillor Holly Bruce:-

"Council reiterates its support in the Active Travel Strategy for more school-age children to walk, wheel and cycle, and recalls its ambition to increase the number of walking or bike buses across Glasgow.

Council notes there are now regular bike buses, which offer pupils a safe way to travel to school as part of a group, at Shawlands, Ibrox, Merrylee, St Fillan's and Hillhead primary schools. Council offers thanks to all the parent volunteers involved in setting up and running these bike buses and to Council and Police Scotland officers who have provided important support.

Council recognises that as well as providing a fun and healthy way of getting to school, bike buses also highlight the current lack of safe cycling infrastructure and routes suitable for children to travel to school and reaffirms the importance of the City Network in providing safe cycling access to all schools in the city.

Council notes that bike buses provide an opportunity to change transport habits and behaviours, helping to encourage the uptake of active travel so that it becomes the norm rather than the exception. As a result, bike buses positively impact on the Council's net zero ambition by decreasing carbon emissions.

Council congratulates members of Shawlands Bike Bus on attending the first international bike bus summit in Barcelona which discussed how groups can organise, share ideas and get inspired. The summit signed a joint statement called the Barcelona Declaration that presented the case for safer cycling to school.

Council believes that there is an opportunity to use the momentum generated by the new bike buses, aligned to the UCI World Championships taking place in 2023, to substantially increase the number of bike buses in the city, with the aim of having at least one in each of the 23 council wards. Council therefore asks the Executive Directors of NRS and Education Services to bring forward a paper on how this aspiration can be supported, including:

- Promoting Cycling Scotland's bike bus toolkit as part of the School Travel and Road Safety (STARS) online resource.

- Considering what other resources or support could be provided for a wider toolkit, including access to bikes, safety equipment, block insurance allowing unaccompanied children to take part and route-planning advice, in particular this should take account barriers which may be faced by particular groups with protected characteristics or socio-economic factors.

- Working collaboratively with Glasgow Life's Active Schools programme on coordinating bike bus activity.

- Writing to all primary schools and parent councils to make them aware of support available and encourage them to explore setting up a bike bus." View Papers
(g)Motion by Bailie Anthony Carroll:-

"Council recognises the inequality in our UK voting system, which elects through a First Past the Post (FPTP) system. FPTP originated when land-owning aristocrats dominated parliament and voting was restricted to property-owning men.

Council notes that in Europe, only the UK and authoritarian Belarus still use single-round FPTP for general elections to their national parliaments. Internationally, Proportional Representation (PR) is used to elect the parliaments of more than 80 countries. These countries tend to produce more equitable, stable, and accountable governments.

PR ensures all votes count, have equal value, and that seats won match votes cast. Under PR, MPs and Parliaments better reflect the age, gender and protected characteristics of both local communities and of the nation.

Council recognises that PR is currently used to elect the Scottish Parliament, Welsh Senedd and Northern Ireland Assembly, as well as local councillors in Scotland.

Council also notes that as more people feel represented through a wider spectrum of voices elected through PR, disenfranchisement is reduced, as well as skewered results such as majority-rule of the UK Government on 35% of the vote in 2005 and 36% in 2015.

Such unrepresentative results have led to consequential policy changes with limited public support, including upon the democratic process. Council expresses its opposition to the UK Government's new policy of mandatory voter photo ID and the detrimental effect it will have on voter turnout, especially in more marginalised communities, for an electoral process that already disenfranchises many through its voting system.

Council echoes the call for proportional representation for elections to the House of Commons which has been made by Trade Unions such as Unite, UNISON, and the CWU, and which was recently passed by the UK Labour Party's Annual Conference, the SNP, Scottish Greens, and other political parties within the UK.

Therefore, Council requests the Convenor for Open Government writes to the Minister for the Cabinet Office urging support for fairer UK Elections, by commencing consultation on a proportional representation system of voting and reversing the restrictions put upon voters by the introduction of mandatory voter ID.

Council will also instruct the Council Election Office to investigate opportunities to enhance awareness of the new Voter ID requirements and to maximise uptake of postal ballot applications from as many people as possible who may otherwise be disenfranchised by the new voter ID law."
 View Papers