Thank you for the incredible support you have shown, not just to me but, to all the SNP candidates who stood for election to Westminster.
I can promise you that I will, as a member of a strong SNP contingent, work tirelessly on behalf of all constituents in Central Ayrshire.
My Constituency Office
14 Eglinton Street, Irvine KA12 8AS Tel: 01294 311 160
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday, 10am – 4pm (closed for lunch 1pm – 2pm)
No Appointment Necessary
Tuesday 23rd August 2016:
- Annbank Village Hall 10.00 – 10.45am
- Prestwick Community Centre 11.15 – 12.00 noon
If you have an issue you wish to raise but cannot attend a surgery, please just contact my office on the phone no. or email address above.
I am looking for a Parliamentary Assistant / Researcher based at Westminster to assist me in Parliamentary duties. For further details click here
Wear it Red this Friday for MS House
This Friday, 26th August, is ‘Wear it Red’ day to try and raise the £2million required to buy Malcolm Sargent House in Prestwick from CLIC Sargent and turn it into an independent charity providing breaks for families with seriously ill children. It is crucial we raise the deposit of £150,000 by the end of September to ensure that it is not put on the open market. Perhaps ask your colleagues, team, school buddies, friends and family to wear something red on Friday and donate £1 for doing so. Or go to http://www.buymsh.com/ and give what you can.
RBS Skills & Opportunities Fund
Round 2 of the RBS Skills and Opportunities Fund is now open and available to charities, social enterprises, community groups, state-funded schools and colleges. £2.5 million is available to help people get work or set up a business.
To find out more, including the application criteria, please do encourage them to visit our website at http://skillsandssopportunitiesfund.rbs.com/
Nominations wanted for Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service recognises and rewards community groups for their commitment and active engagement in their local areas. It is the highest honour which can be bestowed on such groups and is regarded as being equivalent to an MBE. There have been a number of successes in Ayrshire and Arran over the years; however, traditionally only a small number of nominations is received and the Lord Lieutenant, John Duncan, is keen to ensure the many worthy groups in our area have the opportunity to be considered for this prestigious award.
If you know a local volunteering group deserving of recognition for services to the local area, please consider nominating them! Anyone aware of the group, including people who benefit from the group’s activities, may make a nomination. However, you can’t nominate your own group if you’re a volunteer or paid staff member.
To nominate, simply complete the online form at https://qavs.direct.gov.uk/ Notes to help you can be found at https://qavs.direct.gov.uk/guidance-notes. Nominations are open until 16 September 2016, so nominate today and let’s highlight the great volunteer work that we see every day across South Ayrshire.
To keep tabs on what I’ve been up to, please have a look at my blog. You can also view my latest speeches in Parliament at: http://www.parliamentlive.tv/Search?Keywords=&Member=Dr+Philippa+Whitford+MP+&MemberId=4385&House=&Business=&Start=04%2F01%2F2016&End=21%2F07%2F2016
Huge thanks to our Former First Minister, the Rt Hon Alex Salmond MP, who officially opened my office on Friday 4th March.
Devolution and Independence
One of Scotland’s biggest problems is our poor general health and this will not change unless we can tackle the poverty that leads to blighted lives! For this, we must have control of our economy, taxation and welfare as in the “Vow” of Maximum Devolution made shortly before the referendum vote.
The Smith Commission report is disappointing because it leaves Westminster in control of our funding. It does not give the Scottish Government the power to stimulate our economy and fight inequality through tackling poverty wages. The Scottish budget has already been cut by 7% and is earmarked to drop further by 2017. This will threaten all of our public services.
The outcome of the Smith Commission report is the “command paper” Scotland in the United Kingdom: An enduring settlement which details the proposal to be debated in parliament. Even the content of that document isn’t guaranteed.
One of our biggest local challenges is ensuring the survival of Prestwick Airport, and a reduction in Air Passenger Duty is crucial to increase passenger traffic. Devolution of this tax was proposed in the Calman Report in 2009 but never delivered. Sending a large group of SNP MPs will ensure we can press for it to be devolved this time!
SNP MPs will also fight the unnecessary replacement of Weapons of Mass Destruction at Faslane, saving money and enabling exploration of the oil fields in the Clyde basin and West coast. This would provide work for Clyde shipbuilders, create high quality engineering and oil related jobs in Ayrshire and contribute to the rejuvenation of Prestwick airport.
This General Election was about sending MPs to Westminster who will put Scotland first and ensure maximum powers are devolved to Holyrood. Opinion polls suggest that maximum devolution of powers is supported by more than 60% of the population. The SNP group will work to achieve this!
Thank you again for sending me to Westminster, representing the Central Ayrshire constituency, where I will work tirelessly for a better devolution settlement so we can protect our NHS and other public services and fight inequality and poverty in Scotland.
Thank you all