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Briefing Notes No. 146 - 17th. July 2020
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Briefing Notes No. 146 - 17th. July 2020 4 weeks ago #1

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Courtesy and with permission of Briefing Notes

Briefing Notes No. 146 - 17th. July 2020

“Let’s remove national politics from Local Authorities.” - Briefing Notes 2013

• Giffnock & Thornliebank Community Group.

FAO Lorraine Macmillan CEO East Renfrewshire Council
CC Gerry Mahon Head of Legal Services East Renfrewshire Council

Dear Mrs Macmillan,

We have been alerted to the existence of a group called Giffnock & Thornliebank Community Group.

Despite its formal sounding name and the use of the word “Community”, this appears to be an unregulated Group which, worryingly, refuses to disclose who set it up and who runs the group. Of much more significance is the fact that they appear to have ingratiated themselves with their local Boys Brigade. Youths from the Boys Brigade appear to have been taken by this group to litter pick.

Litter picking in these strange times should be left to the professionals. A discarded tissue it could easily contain the Covid-19 virus. We have seen many others warning about the dangers from drug users discarded needles being found and each of these two examples suggest this is dangerous exercise in which to involve members of the boys brigade and doubly so when photographs are allegedly being posted of the group in action with little or no Personal Protective Equipment visible. In addition to the normal PPE, we would suggest protective footwear would be appropriate to prevent a needle penetrating the sole of a trainer as well as suitable leg and arm coverings.

We are addressing this to the CEO and Head of Legal Services asking East Renfrewshire Council to step in as a matter of urgency to determine each of the following:-

1 Are the people behind Giffnock and Thornliebank Community Group fit and proper people to be involved with the youths of the Boys Brigade?
2 Are these people Disclosure Scotland compliant, vetted and approved?
3 Is litter picking by the public, presumably with little or no training or PPE equipment an activity which East Renfrewshire Council consider safe?
4 East Renfrewshire Council have control and responsibility for the Community Councils. What control and responsibility do they have over this group?
5 Can ERC establish if this group requires and carries appropriate insurance?
6 Are the ward Councillors aware of this group and can they shed light on whether the group are engaging in what might be considered as dangerous practices?
7 If ERC share our concerns will they contact Facebook and ask them to ban this group and all associated with it?
8 Will ERC bring this group to the attention of Police Scotland and Disclosure Scotland?

There was a landmark legal case this week where a full compliment of Judges at the UK’s highest court, The Supreme Court, unanimousely ruled that protecting Children took precedence of the rights of a paedophile. See:
That being clearly established, surely justifies legitimate questions being asked about this group?

We attach below the correspondence between the group and a concerned resident. It appears to us that they are wilfully hiding their identities and disingenuously and blatantly refusing to answer legitimate questions whilst trying to bully the enquirer to desist. They also admit to excluding anyone who asks legitimate questions about them from accessing their Facebook page.

Perhaps, in the meantime, parents whose children are members of the local Boys Brigade should be satisfying themselves as to the involvement, if any, of this group with their children.

If any of our subscribers can shed any light on who is behind Giffnock and Thornliebank Community Group, please email us with your information or concerns to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

We will of course report back with answers as they become available, anonymising our sources where appropriate to do so.

In the meantime stay vigilant, stay safe and keep well,

Briefing Notes
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