Greens could withdraw support from the SNP without '˜real change'

Greens leader Patrick Harvie will today warn the SNP it must commit to 'meaningful, progressive change' or lose the support of their pro-independence allies on domestic policy.

Green leader Patrick Harvie will warn the SNP they could lose the supoort of the Greens. Picture: Ian Rutherford

He will tell his party’s Autumn conference in Perth that ministers have missed key opportunities to do this, including reform of the council tax. The minority Scottish Government must now choose between the “progressive” backing of his party or side with the “right-wing Tories”. The number of Green MSPs trebled from two to six in May’s Holyrood election, making the party the fourth largest in the Scottish Parliament. Mr Harvie will tell an audience at Perth Concert Hall that pressure from the party has already achieved much on key issues, including consideration by the Government of a young carer’s grant, the recently announced block on underground coal gasification, and the roll-out of a Glasgow project to boost incomes for vulnerable families.

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Council tax reform, fuel poverty, fracking and land ownership are among the issues which Greens have highlighted. Mr Harvie will also highlight agreement with the Scottish Government on issues like ending benefit sanctions within the soon-to-be devolved employment schemes.