"Politics is all about people. As a Central Scotland MSP it is both a pleasure and a privilege to meet and become involved with a hugely diverse number of people and organisations"

Margaret Mitchell
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Archive for August 2014

Risk to DFID jobs highlighted in Parliament debate

Aug. 21st 2014

Yesterday, the Scottish Parliament debated the future of the Department for International Development’s headquarters in East Kilbride, and the potential loss of jobs, if Scotland were to vote ‘yes’ in September’s referendum.

Margaret highlighted the fact that not only would 600 jobs be at risk or relocated south of the Border but the local economy of East Kilbride would also be drastically affected.

Furthermore, excellent initiatives like the International Citizen’s Service, which benefits Scots aged 18-25 would also be lost.

Speaking in the debate, Margaret said:

“I’m extremely proud of the fact that DFID is based in East Kilbride, not least because last year, it provided over 43 million people in other countries with clean water, better sanitation or improved hygiene conditions.

“There are 600 people employed at Abercrombie House. Almost 60% of this workforce lives within 10 miles of the office. This in turn means many local businesses not only benefit from but have (especially in these difficult times) come to rely on having DFID’s headquarters in East Kilbride.

“However if Scotland chooses to separate from the rest of the UK then the DFID Headquarters must inevitably relocate to south of the border.

“And the International Citizen Service programme, led by Voluntary Service Overseas but funded through DFID, would be lost meaning that young Scots would also lose out on the opportunity to gain valuable skills and experience, regardless of their income, qualifications, or work history whilst simultaneously making a positive impact on communities overseas.

“The UK is a force for good in the world with a disproportionate amount of influence overseas for a nation of its size. It makes no sense to seek to weaken this influence by fragmenting the UK and in so doing putting at risk 600 jobs and the viability of local businesses in East Kilbride all of whom rely on the DFID HQ located there.”


 The full text of the debate can be found here:

Posted by Felicity | in Chamber speeches, Latest news, Parliament

Age Scotland asks MSPs about constituents key concerns

Aug. 21st 2014
Age Scotland stall_21_08_14

Margaret highlighting the issues important to her constituents at the Age Scotland exhibition at the Parliament

Margaret had the opportunity today to discuss with Age Scotland the key issues that older constituents write to her about and highlighted the fears that many of her older constituents face surrounding their energy bills. MSPs were asked to place ‘chips’ in the areas that they receive the most correspondence about from older members of the communities they represent. Age Scotland have a ‘Silver Line’ and can be contacted 24 hours a day on 0800 4 70 80 90 for information, help and advice.

Posted by Felicity | in Issues and events, Latest news, Parliament

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