I’VE been reading about the harassment of women in the Scottish Parliament. Nicola Sturgeon says she is “shocked, saddened and disappointed” to learn that 30 per cent of women working at Holyrood have experienced sexism and/or sexual harassment and that 45 per cent of the perpetrators are MSPs.

Unlike Nicola, I’m neither shocked nor saddened nor disappointed. I’m incandescent with rage. Who are these men – there may also be some women among them – who abuse their power to harass and belittle female employees?

Everyone who works at the parliament is of necessity educated and informed and they must all surely be aware that what they are doing is being scrutinised – constantly – by their colleagues and the media. So why do they harass women? Maybe because they can? Maybe it’s a power thing? Maybe because that behaviour has been allowed for centuries. Maybe because some of them still think of themselves as top dog and believe they can do what they like. Maybe because the behaviour is so ingrained, they don’t even see it as a problem. And maybe journalists who work at Holyrood condone this behaviour just by not seeing it.

If the sexist and sexual behaviour is that ingrained, maybe the whole lot of them need some anti-bullying training. We don’t allow bullying behaviour in schools and we’re trying to stamp it out in the rest of the workplace. So why should people in the Scottish Parliament be allowed to get away with it?

It’s time to grow up, people.

I look forward to seeing what the parliament does about this situation. The nearest to it I can remember is when the director of education in Strathclyde Region (half the population of Scotland) asked a group of us in the 1990s why more women didn’t apply for promoted posts in schools. Almost all of us answered: what’s the point? Men set the agenda. They determine the format of the interviews. They decide who they want – and it isn’t women. They want people who look like them and will play the game. It took 15 years, but – to their credit – that group of men turned things around. The Scottish Parliament can do the same, but it needs firm action by a strong leader.

Over to you, Nicola Sturgeon.

Jean Nisbet

THE recent decision of Ryanair to massively reduce its Glasgow services, abandon a Scottish workforce and therefore inhibit inward tourism to Scotland is indeed a blow for the economy. It’s not the first time Ryanair has upped sticks and left a location. Nor indeed will it be the last, I fear.

It does however indicate the need for a Scottish airline, run for the people of Scotland for the benefit of this country. For the benefit of the economy and answerable only to the people of this country, not the privatisation of profit and shareholders.

Perhaps the relevant authorities may also revisit the plans for the Glasgow airport rail link. The Renfrew Wharf line closed and was lifted circa 35 to 40 years ago. This line left the Glasgow-Ayr line around 400 yards from Paisley Gilmour Street and hugged the east bank of the River Cart, passing Reid Kerr College on its way to Renfrew at its closest merely 100 yards from Glasgow Airport.

The track bed is mostly still there. A line could be relaid from Paisley to the Renfrew wharf line, allowing services from Ayrshire to access. A viaduct could be built across the Cart to get trains to the airport also, or indeed a moving walkway in its place. This line could also serve the West College campus at Renfrew Road and be of some social benefit to the local community – an area needing regeneration. It could possibly represent better value for money than the current plans.

Indeed if the line was go the airport site itself, there is perhaps the opportunity for rail freight.

Bryan O’Hanlon

I WOULD like to congratulate the Scottish Government for setting up the process for a Brexit Continuity Bill. Despite support from all other parties, Conservative Adam Tomkins says that the Bill is “unwelcome, unnecessary and dangerous”. This statement describes Brexit perfectly and confirms the need for the Continuity Bill!

Dennis White
Blackwood, Lanark