GREEN members are in open revolt against their party’s governing deal with the SNP – with some openly calling for the agreement to be scrapped.

Co-leader Patrick Harvie faced a stormy meeting of party members on Thursday night after a torrid day for the Greens saw a key climate target scrapped.

It also brought the news that the Sandyford gender clinic in Glasgow was pausing the prescription of puberty blockers to transgender children and ending hormone treatments for those under the age of 18.

Some members feel the Scottish Greens’ leaders have failed to stick up for the party’s principles in their power-sharing deal with the SNP, including commitments on trans healthcare and the climate.

At Thursday night’s meeting, Greens MSP Ross Greer (below) was said to have dodged a councillor’s question asking at what point the party would pull out of the agreement.

The National: ROSS GREER

The Greens said Greer had “stepped out briefly” for a pre-arranged interview with Sky News and a source close to the MSP said he felt it fair Harvie and Gillian Mackay stayed on.

Lorna Slater, one of the party’s co-leaders, did not attend the meeting.

A source told The National that Greer had failed to answer two questions on the Greens’s red lines for keeping the Bute House Agreement, which propelled the party into power.

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We have seen messages sent to a forum used to select questions for the online meeting, including one asking: “Who will take responsibility for yet another breach of the Bute House Agreement?”

Another complained that “breaches” of the agreement made the Greens look like they were “happy to trade off our principles to be in the room”.

The party is also facing demands – some openly – for an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of members to vote on the deal with the SNP.

Leith councillor Chas Booth on Thursday night went public with his letter to the party’s executive committee calling for a vote on the Bute House Agreement.

The National: Anthony Carroll Scottish Greens.

Anthony Carroll (above), one of the party’s councillors in Glasgow, and Edinburgh councillor Susan Rae have also publicly called for the deal to be put back to members.  

Guy Ingerson, the party’s candidate for the Aberdeen South Westminster seat, tweeted: “Having taken time to process the events of yesterday and the discussion that took place between members and our MSPs, I will be supporting the calls for an EGM made by [Booth] and the [Rainbow Greens].”

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The Rainbow Greens, the party’s LGBTQIA+ group, launched a petition during a protest held at the same time as Thursday’s online meeting in the hopes of forcing a vote on the deal with the SNP.

Jen Bell, co-convenor of the Rainbow Greens, said: “In the Bute House Agreement the Scottish Government promised to dismantle the gatekeeper system and put trans patients at the heart of decisions on their own healthcare. Sandyford’s decision breaks that promise.

“If the Government fails to keep its promises then the future of the Bute House Agreement is called into question, and the members will demand answers.”

A Scottish Greens source told The National: “Patrick Harvie and Ross Greer must have been wishing they weren’t in this meeting – in fact, Ross decided that, having only answered one question, it was more important to run off and speak to the media than to defend his failing coalition to his disappointed membership.

“It was crystal clear that the party’s leadership had no intention of engaging on the future of the Bute House Agreement.

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“But this anti-democratic position cannot hold, no matter how much some would like to continue branding their opponents as ‘cranks and clowns’.”

They added that ministers should take “responsibility for their ineffective period on government salaries”, adding that Greer as “the architect of this disastrous deal with the SNP” should reflect on “his role in bringing his own party to the brink”.

Some in the SNP have also called for the Bute House Agreement to be scrapped, claiming Green policies are pulling them away from the political mainstream

The National:

A Scottish Green spokesperson said: “Ross Greer, Gillian Mackay (above) and Patrick Harvie attended one of our regular member update sessions covering a range of topics, including how we are accelerating action on the climate crisis within government.

“Mr Greer stepped out briefly to fulfil a live interview commitment with Sky News, who were interested to learn more about the extensive package of climate measures announced yesterday and how this will get Scotland back on track towards net-zero by 2045.

“The cooperation agreement that saw Greens enter government for the first time anywhere in the UK, which has been repeatedly endorsed and voted for by members of both parties, has been the catalyst for driving progressive changes including free bus travel for young people, the special offer removing peak rail fares, redistributing wealth from the rich to those most in need and a record £4.7 billion for climate and nature projects this year alone.

“As a democratic party we encourage members to engage and participate, and there are a number of ways open for people to do that.”

First Minister Humza Yousaf was asked about the turmoil in the Greens on Friday and said he valued the Bute House Agreement, adding: "What I would say to every Green member – in fact every member of the public – is that yesterday we brought forward an accelerated policy package of climate measures to tackle the climate crisis.”