Glasgow will have a permanent Pride House LGBT Centre and will support bids for international events such as the LGBT EuroGames if the SNP take the city council in the May election.
That’s the pledge made by the SNP as they launched a manifesto for a new ‘City Government’ with the hope of taking control from Labour.
The party says it will establish a new permanent LGBT centre to ensure organisations that support LGBT people are “sustainably resourced” and to achieve the ambition of making Glasgow the “best place in Europe for LGBT people to live and visit.”
The SNP are hoping for a majority of the 85 seats across 23 wards available in Glasgow at the upcoming election in May, where in 2015 the city sensationally sacked their previous Labour MPs, instead electing SNP representatives in every constituency in a huge swing away from Scottish Labour. The city was also one of the most pro-independence cities in Scotland in the 2014 referendum, with nearly 54% of voters voting Yes.
SNP Group Leader in Glasgow, Susan Aitken, said:
“We stand on a manifesto that is driven by our desire to create a fairer and more equal city, where the life chances and life choices of all our citizens are improved. The SNP seeks not just to be an administration in Glasgow, but a City Government providing strategic leadership and vision for a genuine Team Glasgow approach, focused on working together to achieve the best outcomes for people and places.”
The SNP also launched their pledge to work with LGBT Youth Scotland and the TIE Campaign in rolling out training which they hope will stamp out homophobia in all of the city’s schools. There was a similar commitment from Scottish Labour, also launching their manifesto for Glasgow today. They’ll take a “zero tolerance” approach to homophobia and all other forms of bullying in schools and will launch a new ‘teacher toolkit’.
Labour, in outlining their achievements in Glasgow since the last local election in 2012, said they had “put discussion of LGBTI issues into Glasgow’s schools” although there was no further information published on this statement. There was also a commitment to implement the recommendations of the Council’s Youth Commission, specifically to campaign to lower the age of gender recognition to 16.
Frank McAveety, Leader of Glasgow Labour, said:
“This manifesto is a plan for a Glasgow that will be relentless in its focus on new jobs, will never tire of investing in our children, will put its heart and soul into banishing fuel poverty with Glasgow’s own energy company and will demand that no Glaswegian is left behind because of disability, gender or circumstance.”
Labour have held control of Glasgow since the 1980 council elections and have largely dominated power in the city since the end of World War II.
Glasgow is widely estimated to have the largest population of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people in Scotland. It has a large and vibrant LGBT cultural scene including bars, cafes and events. Pride Glasgow is Scotland’s biggest celebration of LGBT life and in 2015 raised over £167,000 from its 2-day festival.
Glasgow opened a dedicated ‘Gay & Lesbian Centre’ in 1995 which expanded gradually over a decade, but the doors closed in 2009 after allegations of serious financial irregularities, with the city council pulling its funding completely.
The city, while having the highest estimated population of LGBT people, has also seen one of the highest increases in hate crime against LGBT people, increasing by 86% since records began in 2010.
Manifesto commitments for other parties were not available at the time of publication. Local council elections are being held across Scotland on Thursday 4th May.