The rise and fall of Glasgow’s Red Road Flats, part 1: Glasgow housing in historical context
see also: (131) Boom! & http://www.redroadflats.org.uk/
image: Tom Parnell via Flickr/CC
A town each in Canada, Scotland and New Zealand share the name Hamilton. On poverty and wages they appear to speak the same language. Minimum wages are not enough in these places to fully participate in life and keep individuals healthy through proper housing and living conditions. Those participating in this internet discussion, recorded this afternoon, explain their take on living wages as the preferred approach to pulling people who work out of poverty.
Let’s scrap the DWP: the case for basic income security for Scotland
61-page .pdf file
Recent efforts to reform welfare benefit schemes in the United Kingdom are under way and as expected are no small source of contention. An important possible measure of the success or failure of this austerity-driven reform might sensibly be found in food bank use. Scotland and England have both seen recent high level reports into such things. Yesterday a blogger at the Guardian online shared a positive impression of the seriousness and value of the Scottish report and contrasted its publication with the suppression of a similar document produced in England.
Overview of Food Aid Provision in Scotland
38-page .pdf file from the Scottish Government
Scottish government report links welfare reform to food bank growth
Cuts Blog – theguardian.com
The most deprived place in Scotland is a residential neighbourhood called Ferguslie Park. We determined that via an online graphic tool that displays a frightening amount of detail. Ferguslie Park is located in Paisley, a satellite of Glasgow. Hopping from map to a street level view in barely a second makes for a surreal sort of powerless power to see reality.
Not a pretty place, but not so different to the passerby from many a place all over the developed world. Scotland has never been a stranger to poverty and it looks like that won’t be changing any time soon …no matter how detailed, digitized and sophisticated the measurement of that poverty becomes.
Deprivation in Scotland mapped Guardian UK
photo: Ferguslie Park in 2006 by Richard Webb/geograph.co.uk via Wikimedia Commons
If I told you about a country with beautiful scenery composed of mountains and coastlines, surrounded by oceans on three sides and blessed with oil wealth you could pick Scotland or Canada …and be right with either! Liking a drink, Celtic place names and a middle class under pressure and at risk of evaporating are other things these two countries have in common.
Reporting on Glasgow is this blog posting from the Socialist Courier. The really funny part is how this item is from the archives, having been published in 1981!
Getting the blues in suburbia
Some observers suggest that recent urban rioting in England is the subject of massive overplay in the global media. Either way, the discussion of it seems hopelessly polarized. Also noteworthy is the lack of disturbance in Glasgow, a city sadly known for some of the worst social conditions in the European Union. The link below, to a BBC page, may be of interest. Not for a minute do we think that the response to suburban poverty begins and ends with police crackdowns. It seems that if the fun and games on the perimeter are ignored for a long, long time it festers until there is no other immediate option.
Glasgow gangs chose route to peace in face of tough crackdown: Strathclyde community project helps blighted housing estates in city’s east and north claim 50% cut in gang violence