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Notre Dame High School Pupils Win £1,000 in Dragon’s Den-style Competition

That the Parliament congratulates pupils from Notre Dame High School on winning £1,000 at the first Incredible Innovations Competition after impressing the judges with their idea of an eco-friendly reusable bottle; notes that the event was held at West College Scotland and jointly organised by Developing the Young Workforce and Morrison Construction, and saw the Greenock pupils take on young people from across Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire and West Dunbartonshire; acknowledges that the prize money will be used to supply 1,300 personal water bottles to existing and new pupils, as well as staff, cutting the use of plastic at the school, with Morrison Construction committing to supplying 250 water bottles to kick-start the project; commends the pupils for thinking of ways to reduce their school’s environmental impact, and applauds the staff for encouraging and supporting the pupils and helping them reach and succeed in the final.

Supported by: Richard Lyle, David Torrance, Bob Doris, Fulton MacGregor, Bill Kidd, Stewart Stevenson, Tom Arthur, Jenny Gilruth

Two Port Glasgow Firefighters Honoured with Dedication Certificates

That the Parliament acknowledges that the Inverclyde firefighters, Jim Cuffe and Tam Finney, who joined the service on the same day in 1978, have been honoured for dedicating eight decades of their lives to protecting the local community; understands that the pair were recently presented with commendations for their service during a ceremony at Port Glasgow Fire Station; recognises that Jim, 59, has been in the service long enough to see his son, Ross, follow in his footsteps and become a crew manager, and that Tam, 63, was presented with a commendation in 2009 after helping to rescue several of his neighbours from a flat fire; believes that Jim and Tam are an absolute credit to their profession; thanks them for their dedicated service, and commends them for joining the retained ranks.

Supported by: Annabelle Ewing, Sandra White, Alison Harris, Richard Lyle, Fulton MacGregor, Neil Findlay, Bill Kidd, Kenneth Gibson, Alison Johnstone, Stewart Stevenson, Edward Mountain, Tom Arthur, Jenny Gilruth

Catering Staff at Inverclyde Royal Hospital Named Best in the UK

That the Parliament recognises that the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde team that prepares meals for patients across the board area won the top honour at the Hospital Caterers Association Awards at Celtic Manor in Wales; notes that the team won the Catering Service of the Year award for its role in delivering around 3.6 million dishes annually across 12 sites, including Inverclyde Royal Hospital (IRH); understands that the staff stood out for their efforts in devising a variety of nutritious meals in partnership with dieticians and patients to meet the needs of a large number of people who often have a range of differing requirements; notes that meals, with the exception of a small number of specialist dishes, are nutritionally analysed and freshly prepared in cook freeze production units at IRH and at Paisley’s Royal Alexandra Hospital; notes that the service was also recognised for introducing more choice as well as cutting down on levels of food waste, and commends the health board for being the only one in Scotland to employ a full-time dietitian as part of the catering team.

Supported by: Richard Lyle, Fulton MacGregor, Monica Lennon, Sandra White, Bob Doris, Bill Kidd, Stewart Stevenson, Tom Arthur, Jenny Gilruth

Notre Dame High School Crowned Scottish Netball Champions

That the Parliament congratulates Notre Dame High School’s netball squad on winning the Scottish Schools Cup at a closely fought final at Ravenscraig Sports Centre in Motherwell; recognises that the Greenock school team saw off competition from 117 rival squads and emerged victorious by defeating Peebles High School 59-55; understands that the Notre Dame squad reached the final in 2018 but were defeated and were therefore eager to win this time; appreciates that the girls have worked extremely hard to improve on their previous second-place finish, and that their coach, Claire Munn, from Clyde Netball Club, has shown outstanding leadership to help the girls achieve this success, and commends everyone involved at the school in supporting the team, as well as the players' families and friends.

Supported by: Sandra White, Alasdair Allan, Richard Lyle, Bill Kidd, Rona Mackay, Jenny Gilruth, Fulton MacGregor, Alison Johnstone, Rachael Hamilton, Tom Arthur

Universal Credit and Mental Health: Recommendations for Change

That the Parliament accepts SAMH’s recent report, "It Was A Confusion" Universal Credit and Mental Health: Recommendations for Change; notes that it lists 17 recommendations to improve universal credit for the benefit of claimants living with mental health issues, including that implicit consent to welfare advisors and other relevant representatives be reinstated for universal credit; understands that, for legacy benefits, welfare advisors can contact the DWP using “implicit consent”, which is where the client has given prior consent to the welfare advisor so they do not have to contact the DWP themselves and do not need to be present when the welfare advisor contacts the DWP; regrets that this is not the case for universal credit, where welfare advisors require “explicit consent”, which in practice means that the client must give permission in writing, over the telephone or in person to the DWP in order for a representative, besides their MSP, to speak about their claim; considers that this shift from implicit to explicit consent is preventing MSPs from representing their constituents if they have an issue with their claim; believes that this is just one of the many ways that the current universal credit system is failing claimants, who are often the most vulnerable people in society, and calls on the UK Government to reinstate implicit consent for universal credit and to abolish what it considers the unjustified five-week waiting period for the first payment.

Supported by: Sandra White, Richard Lyle, Bill Kidd, Fulton MacGregor, John Mason, Jenny Gilruth, Kenneth Gibson, Mark McDonald, Tom Arthur

Inverclyde’s New MSYPs Elected

That the Parliament congratulates Megan Alford and Cameron Noble, both aged 15, on being elected to represent Greenock and Inverclyde at the Scottish Youth Parliament from 2019 to 2021; understands that 2,724 votes were cast locally and that Megan, from Notre Dame High School, and Cameron, from Inverclyde Academy, will take office at the next sitting of the youth parliament, which will take place in Clackmannanshire in June 2019; notes that the two teenagers will also join the Inverclyde Youth Council to represent the interests of young people locally, and wishes the pair all the best in their new roles.

Supported by: Edward Mountain, Richard Lyle, Bill Kidd, Stewart Stevenson, Fulton MacGregor, Alasdair Allan, Sandra White, Kenneth Gibson, Bob Doris, Jenny Gilruth, Gillian Martin, Neil Bibby, Tom Arthur

Amy Muir, Rangers’ Women’s Player of the Year

That the Parliament congratulates Amy Muir, who is from Gourock, on writing herself into the Rangers' history books after she was named the Women's Player of the Year at the club's annual awards, which were presented on 7 April 2019 along with those for its male stars; recognises that the Scotland under-19s captain, who is a former Clydeview Academy pupil, was presented with this prize after only her second full first-team campaign; believes that Rangers presenting the prizes for its male and female teams together is a huge step forward towards equality, but considers that more still needs to be done to represent the women’s game better in Scotland at both a club and national level; welcomes however what it sees as the progress that is being made, including with the national team qualifying for the 2019 World Cup and recently becoming only the second Scottish side, after the men’s under-20s, to defeat Brazil at any level, winning 1-0 on 8 April; welcomes the recognition for Amy, and wishes her all the best with both her footballing career and other endeavours.

Supported by: Miles Briggs, Bill Kidd, Stewart Stevenson, Fulton MacGregor, Joan McAlpine, Tom Arthur, Bob Doris

Alan Hunter’s Success at the Robert Burns World Federation Schools’ Competition

That the Parliament congratulates Alan Hunter, who is 17, on achieving first place and best instrumentalist at the Robert Burns World Federation Schools’ Competition; recognises that the Gourock teenager, who is in sixth year at Clydeview Academy, performed A Red, Red Rose at the final, held at Irvine Royal Academy in Ayrshire; appreciates that Alan, who is principal cornet player in the Riverside Youth Band, gave such a stellar performance that one woman in the audience penned a letter to a national newspaper praising his rendition; understands that Alan is planning a gap year to gain more experience of jazz before applying to the Royal Conservatoire, where he hopes to pursue a sound production course, and wishes him all the best in his future endeavours.

Supported by: Miles Briggs, Kenneth Gibson, Jenny Gilruth, Alasdair Allan, Stewart Stevenson, Fulton MacGregor, Sandra White, Joan McAlpine, Gillian Martin, Tom Arthur

Tia McGhee Completes 20 Secondary-style Qualifications While in Primary School

That the Parliament recognises that Tia McGhee of King’s Oak Primary School has become the first pupil in Inverclyde to complete the full set of SQA personal achievement units; understands that P7 pupils at the Greenock school were given the opportunity to achieve some of the certificates before starting high school and were offered 20 different units to choose from; notes that pupils were told there would be a bronze award for completing one unit from each theme, silver for finishing four or gold for doing six, however, Tia decided to tackle them all and gave up some of her lunchtimes to get the job done; acknowledges that the 12-year-old wanted to reduce the amount of time she spent on her phone and Xbox, which is why she set herself this goal that took her around six months to complete; believes that Tia has benefited from completing these units and that she claims her confidence has grown as a result; commends staff at King’s Oak in supporting Tia and empowering her to now help some of her fellow pupils complete the units, and wishes her all the best as she prepares for high school later in 2019.

Supported by: Richard Lyle, Bill Kidd, Jenny Gilruth, Stewart Stevenson, Fulton MacGregor, Sandra White, Joan McAlpine, Gillian Martin, Tom Arthur

Greenock Social Work Student Receives Honorary Award

That the Parliament congratulates Edward McKim, from Greenock, on receiving the Special Recognition by Users of Service award at the Scottish Association of Social Work (SASW) Awards 2019; understands that the 27-year-old is in his final year of his social work course at the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) and was nominated for the Student Social Worker of the Year award by a family that he had worked with; acknowledges that the anonymous nominator drafted a heartfelt letter that outlined the positive impact that Edward had on them and their family’s life; notes that the Minister for Children and Young People, Maree Todd MSP, presented Edward with the honorary award; recognises that the SASW awards were founded in 2007 and celebrate exceptional practice within the social work profession; considers that Edward is a credit to Inverclyde and that his achievement is a real testament to his work ethic and the staff at UWS, and wishes him all the best in his final year of studies.

Supported by: David Torrance, Richard Lyle, Bill Kidd, Fulton MacGregor, Sandra White, Rona Mackay, Joan McAlpine, Gillian Martin, Maureen Watt, Jenny Gilruth, Stewart Stevenson, Tom Arthur

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