Glasgow City Council Agenda - 07 September 2023, 11:00 Help

A meeting to be held at City Chambers, Glasgow at 11:00 on 07 September 2023.

Number Item
1Minutes of Council meeting of 22nd June 2023 (Print 3, pages 1 to 24). View Papers
2Committees' minutes - Submitted for information and approval as a correct record only (page 25 onwards).  View Papers
3Changes to committees etc. View Papers
(a)Education, Skills and Early Years City Policy Committee - Remove Bill Butler and appoint Lillth Johnstone; and
(b)Local Licensing Forum - Appoint Ms Eva Curran, National Union of Students.
4Representation on outside bodies. View Papers
(a)Jobs and Business Glasgow Limited Board - Appoint Mr James McGregor as Independent Trustee;
(b)Lord Provost Trusts for Vulnerable Citizens, Older People and Children Fund - Remove Elaine Galletly and appoint Mairi Millar; and
(c)SEC Limited - Remove Elaine Galletly and appoint Duncan Black.
5Correspondence.
6Questions. View Papers
7Notice of motions.
(a)Motion by Councillor Allan Casey:-

"Council notes the recent annual publication of the drug related death statistics in Scotland and the 37% reduction in drugs-related deaths in Glasgow this year.

Council further notes the range of interventions that are being made with partners across the city to tackle this crisis. These interventions include - The Crisis Outreach Service; Mobile Harm Reduction Initiative; Injecting Equipment Provision and, The Enhanced Drug Treatment Service. Council notes continuing discussions about creating a supervised drug consumption facility within Glasgow and restates its support for this facility.

Council places on record its thanks to Health and Social Care Partnership staff, as well as colleagues in partner organisations, and our inspirational recovery communities for their tireless work to make inroads into this ongoing health crisis in the city.

Council is encouraged that the interventions that have been made are beginning to make a difference, but Council is resolute in its belief that these figures remain too high and that more needs to be done locally and nationally to end this crisis.

Council welcomes the Scottish Government's recent publication of 'A Caring, Compassionate and Human Rights Informed Drug Policy for Scotland'. Council believes that this prospectus is one which is ambitious, progressive, and radical. It is grounded in evidence from around the world and aligned to our values that this is a public health emergency rather than a criminal justice one.

Council notes that some of the evidence-based interventions which have a track record of success outlined in that paper include changes which could allow wider access to naloxone, allow for supervised drug consumption facilities, create a network of drug checking facilities, and increase access to harm reduction approaches such as provision of drug paraphernalia. Council notes that naloxone training has been offered to all elected members and agrees that a further training session should be arranged and that the more people who are trained and carry a naloxone kit, the more lives might be saved.

Council notes that the publication of this policy paper was launched at the Global Commission on Drug Policy's annual general meeting in Scotland in July. Council further notes that Glasgow City Council have been invited by the Global Commission to work with them to establish a cities initiative to bring together cities across the world who have a particular interest in drug-related issues. Council welcomes this opportunity which has the potential to draw together insights from leading academics and civil society organisations across the globe, build a coalition for change with other urban networks like Eurocities, galvanise collaboration between the public sector and third sector organisations and showcase Glasgow's issues and solutions.

Council further notes the recent report by the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee found that the UK Government's response could "go further by adopting a broader range of public health-based harm reduction methods" and recommends that the "UK Government support a pilot facility in Glasgow and create a legislative pathway to enable more".

It is disappointing that the Home Office has immediately ruled this considered position out and Council remains frustrated that the UK Government continue to view drugs policy solely as a justice issue rather than a public health matter. Council therefore agrees with the call for the Decriminalisation of all drugs for personal supply and seeks approval for the Council to adopt a formal position in favour of decriminalisation.

Council agrees that the "war on drugs" has failed and that decriminalisation would allow people found in possession of drugs to be treated and supported rather than criminalised and excluded. Council notes that decriminalisation is the common position of the UN Chief Executives Board.
Council asks the Convener to write to the Scottish Government and UK Government outlining the Council's support for decriminalisation; note the Home Affairs Committee the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 require reform; highlight the recommendation that Glasgow should pilot the use of drug consumption rooms; restate our longstanding commitment to be a place where new ideas to tackle this ongoing public health crisis are progressed." View Papers
(b)Motion by Councillor George Redmond:-

"Council notes that for too long, Glasgow has been let down by two failing governments, both at Holyrood and Westminster. The people of Glasgow deserve a competent and functioning Scottish Government, who act in the best interests of all the citizens of our city.

Council notes the recent proposals by the Scottish Government to increase Council Tax for the poorest people in society. This increase will affect thousands of hard-working families across the city, who are already struggling to make ends meet during a cost-of-living crisis. These increases are a direct result of years of SNP cuts to local government, leaving the people of Glasgow being asked to pay more for less.

Council welcomes the public transport initiative in Manchester led by Labour Mayor Andy Burnham, and notes that the Scottish Government has still not brought forward the secondary legislation to enable progress to be made. It was in 2019 that the Scottish Government first pledged to bring such legislation forward. Council agrees that Glasgow needs a fully integrated, not-for-profit public transport system which is publicly controlled and accountable.

Glasgow was promised a fair financial deal in 2017 but continued budget reductions have resulted in continued pressure on public services and the city facing a series of problems with industrial action being considered in our schools, in our culture sector and in our cleansing services.

Council further agrees that Glasgow needs a fair financial deal from the Scottish Government and resolves to write to the First Minister and all Glasgow MSPs to seek their support for a fair deal for Glasgow." View Papers
(c)Motion by Councillor Lana Reid-McConnell:-

"Council notes the devastating impacts of recent extreme weather events around the world, including fires in Hawaii which have killed at least 114 people and destroyed thousands of people's homes and livelihoods. Council also notes this summer has seen a number of climate records shattered, including the hottest day ever recorded, the highest ocean temperature ever recorded and the lowest ever levels of Antarctic sea ice. Council acknowledges that this comes after many years of escalating numbers of weather events that have led to catastrophic consequences. As the former host city of COP26, Council endorses the comments by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres that "our world needs climate action on all fronts: everything, everywhere, all at once." Therefore, as well as expressing sympathy with all those people around the world whose lives are being ruined by the worsening impact of climate change, Council also expresses deep disappointment at the continuing failure of the international community to deliver reductions in emissions that are commensurate with sustaining civilised life on Earth.

Council recalls its declaration of a climate and ecological emergency in 2019, the unanimous agreement of the Glasgow Climate Plan in 2021, and the creation of a Net Zero and Climate Monitoring Committee within the current term to keep the Climate Plan and associated plans under ongoing review. Council believes that on the basis of evidence presented to that Committee so far, Glasgow City Council is planning for and is capable of the level of transformation required to make us achieve our target for net zero emissions by 2030, however we are not presently on track to achieve them and therefore more must be done, urgently, to ensure we are on a viable pathway. In particular, Council calls for the Scottish and UK Governments to ensure Glasgow has the finances and the powers needed to accelerate action to reduce emissions. Considering the inextricable link between the climate crisis and poverty and inequality, Council wants to see faster progress on climate finance, aligning Investment Zones to support Glasgow's just transition to Net Zero, and establishing skills pathways for key transition needs including energy infrastructure, buildings retrofit, and industries such as sustainable fashion.

Council understands that to ensure our response to the climate crisis is ingrained in all that we do as a council, there must be a deep understanding by elected members and officers of the crisis and how we respond to it. Therefore Council requests that a paper is brought to the Net Zero Climate Progress & Monitoring committee on how we can prioritise resource to deliver a training schedule that incorporates learnings from the Just Transition Working Group Report within the updated Climate Literacy training. Council also believes that all elected members and senior officers have a duty to ensure climate action remains of the highest priority and therefore agrees to ask the Business Bureau to consider how the Full Council can be kept apprised, at least annually, of the scale of the challenge, where Glasgow is making progress, and what more can be done to accelerate necessary action. This should include considering setting targets for Scope 3 emissions and raising their importance with partners such as Sustainable Glasgow signatories, considering they are estimated to be upwards of 80% of the council's emissions.

Finally, Council notes the recent announcement by the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak of plans to issue hundreds of new oil and gas licences in order to 'max out' North Sea reserves and that this is likely to include the massive Rosebank field. Council commits to support the Stop Rosebank campaign and others in opposing these acts of climate vandalism. Council believes that there is no credible policy justification for these actions, either for climate, jobs or energy security, and instead believes it is part of a conscious decision on behalf of the Conservative Party to seek to exploit the environment as a wedge issue in the misplaced belief it will provide them with short-term electoral gain. Council believes that such a mindset is deplorable and that all those politicians and political leaders who seek to wilfully delay, disrupt or otherwise thwart the implementation of necessary climate actions will never be forgiven for that." View Papers
(d)Motion by Bailie Thomas Kerr:-

"Council welcomes the decision by the UK Government to designate the Glasgow City Region as one of two of Scotland's Investment Zones alongside North East Scotland. Council notes that the UK and Scottish Governments worked closely together on this decision and welcomes proactive and positive engagement between both of our Governments.

Council recognises and thanks all of those officers from this Council and the wider Glasgow City Region who played their part in making the case for Glasgow and the wider region to benefit from an investment zone.

Council welcomes the up to 80 million that will be invested over the next 5 years as part of this zone and that it will be focused on creating jobs and prosperity. Council notes that Glasgow's Investment Zone will be focused on research institutions such as our universities helping the city to drive growth in cutting-edge high-tech industries. Council further notes that the funding will be invested in supporting the economy and providing targeted tax reliefs and incentives to support growth. Council recognises that the Investment Zone's priorities will also be tailored alongside our city's and the UK's wider net-zero targets.

Council expresses its firm desire to create a truly business friendly city and recognises the key role that the Council plays in delivering this through planning and economic development policies, delivering efficient Council services for residents and businesses and ensuring that our city's infrastructure is fit for purpose.

Council therefore instructs the Chief Executive to prepare a paper for discussion at the Economy, Housing, Transport and Regeneration City Policy Committee which sets out in what ways Glasgow can work to become a truly business friendly city - identifying current issues expressed by businesses and investors, exploring what scope the Council has to address such issues and what steps can be taken to address such issues and ensure that processes and policies are as efficient as possible to encourage and welcome those who seek to invest in Glasgow.

Council agrees that this paper should be brought within 6 months of this motion." View Papers
(e)Motion by Councillor Laura Doherty:-

"Council notes the Live Well Community Referral Programme pilot which began in June 2022 and is designed to support people with a wide range of social, emotional, or practical needs to engage with Glasgow Life services; and is focused on improving their wellbeing and contributing to better health equity in the city. Council further notes Live Well links people either by health or community workers or through self-referral to activities in Calton, Bridgeton, Parkhead, Shettleston, Tollcross and nearby areas towards Springboig.

Council believes those who could benefit most from Community Referral include people with low mood, anxiety and stress, people who are socially isolated and/or lonely and those with long-term conditions who frequently attend either primary or secondary health care. Council recognises the benefits for those taking part include:

- Becoming more connected with their community

- Meeting new friends

- Improving their mental wellbeing

- Increasing their physical activity levels

- Learning new skills, volunteering or finding wellbeing information

Council commends Live Well's creative approach to green social prescribing, which links them to nature-based interventions and activities, and concurs with the positive feedback from participants on the range of wellbeing activities provided by Glasgow Life and community organisations in the pilot area which include art and creative activities, social groups, museum activities, walking groups, exercise classes and sports, family activities, computer basics, learning and skills classes and volunteering.

Council further recognises how shaping existing services to remove barriers can result in more take up among people who would not usually have participated, ultimately improving their physical and mental wellbeing.

Council further commends Glasgow Life's co-production of tailored programmes - Singing for Fun, Healthy Body Healthy Mind and Coffee and Culture initiatives - created in response to a local need for more accessible sessions and participants ideas.

Council believes community responses to local health and wellbeing issues are a vital way of addressing needs early on and minimising the need for more intensive statutory services further down the line.

Council instructs the Chief Executive Department to work with colleagues in Glasgow Life and Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership to bring an update on Live Well to the Wellbeing, Equalities, Communities, Culture and Engagement City Policy Committee in winter of 2023 to inform the potential rollout of a phased citywide approach." View Papers
(f)Motion by Councillor Stephen Curran:-

"Council notes that:

1. The pressure on organisations to pay the right amount of tax in the right place at the right time has never been stronger.

2. Polling from the Institute for Business Ethics finds that "corporate tax avoidance" has, since 2013, been the clear number one concern of the British public when it comes to business conduct.

3. Almost two-thirds (63%) of the Scottish public agree that the Government and local councils should consider a company's ethics and how they pay their tax as well as value for money and quality of service provided, when undertaking procurement.

4. Around 15% of public contracts in Scotland have been won by companies with links to tax havens.

5. It has been conservatively estimated that losses from multinational profit-shifting (just one form of tax avoidance) could be costing the UK some 17bn per annum in lost corporation tax revenues.

6. The Fair Tax Mark offers a means for business to demonstrate good tax conduct, and has been secured by wide range of businesses across the UK, including FTSE-listed PLCs, co-operatives, social enterprises and large private businesses.

Council believes that:

1. Paying tax is often presented as a burden, but it shouldn't be.

2. Tax enables us to provide services from education, health and social care, to flood defence, roads, policing and defence. It also helps to counter financial inequalities and rebalance distorted economies.

3. As recipients of significant public funding, local authorities should take the lead in the promotion of exemplary tax conduct; be that by ensuring contractors are paying their proper share of tax, or by refusing to go along with offshore tax dodging when buying land and property.

4. Where substantive stakes are held in private enterprises, then influence should be wielded to ensure that such businesses are exemplars of tax transparency and tax avoidance is shunned - e.g., no use of marketed schemes requiring disclosure under DOTAS regulations (Disclosure Of Tax Avoidance Schemes) or arrangements that might fall foul of the General Anti-Abuse Rule.

5. More action is needed, however, as current law significantly restricts councils' ability to either penalise poor tax conduct or reward good tax conduct, when buying goods or services.

6. UK cities, counties and towns can and should stand up for responsible tax conduct - doing what they can within existing frameworks and pledging to do more given the opportunity, as active supporters of international tax justice.

Council resolves to support, in principle, the Fair Tax Declaration and instructs officers to bring forward a report to the appropriate City Policy Committee setting out the legal, financial and procurement implications relating to the Declaration in order to determine what further steps can be taken to:-

1. Lead by example and demonstrate good practice in our tax conduct, right across our activities.

2. Ensure contractors implement IR35 robustly and pay a fair share of employment taxes.

3. Not use offshore vehicles for the purchase of land and property, especially where this leads to reduced payments of stamp duty.

4. Undertake due diligence to ensure that not-for-profit structures are not being used inappropriately as an artificial device to reduce the payment of tax and business rates.

5. Demand clarity on the ultimate beneficial ownership of suppliers and their consolidated profit & loss position.

6. Promote Fair Tax Mark certification to any business in which we have a significant stake and where corporation tax is due.

7. Support Fair Tax Week events in the area, and celebrate the tax contribution made by responsible businesses who say what they pay with pride.

8. Support calls for urgent reform of UK and Scots law to enable local authorities to better penalise poor tax conduct and reward good tax conduct through their procurement policies." View Papers
(g)Motion by Bailie Ledhas Massie:-

"Glasgow City Council notes the legal and social movement globally for the 'Rights of Nature', which aims to strengthen protections for people, place and planet. There are several district councils in Northern Ireland, and at least one district council in England, who have adopted resolutions calling for the adoption of rights of nature laws. Council believes that 'Rights of Nature' can help inspire an innovative rethinking about how to create regenerative, not extractive, economies while also making human and other living communities safer, stronger and more resilient.

The positive work already being undertaken by Council staff and groups on the climate emergency and biodiversity crises are commendable, but we recognise the need for a rights-based approach to nature.

It is proposed that the Council will continue to collaborate with civic society across Glasgow to explore what rights of nature mean for the people and the local economy. Council will, in the next twelve months, work with local communities and stakeholders to draw up a Declaration for the Rights of Nature for the City, to be brought back before the Council for consideration in 2024.

Council requests that a committee report, authored in collaboration and with input from the local stakeholders involved in the Glasgow National Park City Group be brought to the Council in relation to embedding "Rights of Nature" as a keystone concept into the Council's operational practices, planning processes and long-term decision making.

In addition, Glasgow City Council acknowledges our mutual environmental obligations under the Espoo Convention, and we call on all councils in Scotland to also explore "Rights of Nature" for their Council areas."  View Papers
(h)Motion by Councillor Elaine McSporran:-

"Council notes the September 2023 Food Summit highlighting the progress made on the Glasgow City Food Plan developed by the multi-sector Glasgow Food Policy Partnership (GFPP) in its first 2 years: a holistic 10-year plan aiming for Glasgow to be recognised for its good food and as a city where tasty, healthy, affordable food is accessible to everyone. Council further notes that the plan has 6 themes and is based around 3 overarching pillars - Equity, Sustainability and Health.

Council recognises the successful progress made in these areas ranging from:

- the Holiday Food and Activity programme;

- Grounds for Recycling initiative by the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce and the hospitality and tourism sector to recycle used coffee grounds from over 60 venues during the UCI Cycling World Championships; and

- the Council school meals service accreditation as a Bronze Food for Life Served Here provider, which means that, more than 75% of meals are freshly prepared and seasonal and local ingredients are used where possible, and, winning the 2022 Scottish School Food Awards Healthy Living Innovation Award, commending the council's efforts in delivering fresh, local and sustainable food onto the plates of children and young people.

Council further recognises that recent accolade by Sustain in its Every Mouthful Counts report which reviewed 200 local authorities and commended Glasgow as a UK leader regarding food policy, practice and procurement. Council agrees with Sustain, the alliance for better food and farming that the "Westminster government has failed to implement recommendations of the independent National Food Strategy, including a Food Bill to bring forward the requirement to set up a food partnership in every local area". This difference in national policies between the four nations of the UK is a significant factor in the difference in performance between English authorities compared to Welsh and Scottish counterparts on food waste and food growing.

Council welcomes the Scottish Government Good Food Nation (Scotland) Act passed in June 2022, the establishment in May 2023 of a new dedicated Food Security Unit ensuring Scotland's food security by monitoring the supply chain. Council shares the concerns of the recent Westminster cross-party Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) select committee report calling on the UK Government to break the junk food cycle, address food and take food security more seriously, or risk serious public health consequences. Council (further) agrees that given the importance of good food for health, and the future costs to society of neglecting this, then immediate mitigation of food insecurity, particularly for children, must be a priority for the UK Government as the crucial powers related to food security are reserved.

Council congratulates and commends the GFPP for taking forward in a concerted fashion the Food Plan. Council commits to ensuring its own systems and processes are accessible and navigable for communities and the general public and notes the internal group working to coordinate and streamline Council delivery of activity aligned to the Food Plan.

Council commits to build on the Summit discussions and learning on local and national food related developments and changing context, work to improve the food system in other parts of the UK and Europe, and how the food plan should evolve going forward and agrees to bring an update to the Community Planning Partnership.

Council instructs the Chief Executive to write to Mark Steven MP, UK Minister of State for Food, Farming and Fisheries highlighting the Summit, Glasgow City Food Plan, Glasgow Food Policy Partnership and good practice as a Good Food City as independently identified by Sustain.

Council further instructs that the correspondence notes its support for Sustain's concerns regarding the UK Government's failures; and the need for the UK Government to respond urgently to the EFRA select committee report and recommendations; and take decisive action to address rampant consumer price inflation rates which is at its highest in over 40 years; ensure access to good quality food and take steps to ensure food security and equity." View Papers