Ian Murray MP protests decision to increase bonuses for Royal Mail managers

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Yesterday the Telegraph reported the huge increase in bonuses being paid to managers in the Royal Mail, even as stamp prices soar.

The full article is available online: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/royal-mail/9876271/Bonuses-at-Royal-Mail-rise-by-two-thirds.html

Ian Murray, MP for Edinburgh South and Labour’s spokesperson on postal affairs said: “Consumers and businesses will be completely dismayed to hear that Royal Mail managers have received such a substantial increase in bonus payments at a time when stamp prices have increased disproportionately and delivery standards have slipped.”

Shoppers get more than they bargained for

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Customers at a local charity shop got more than they bargained for today (1 February) after being served by a rather familiar face – Ian Murray MP.

Mr Murray, MP for Edinburgh South, volunteered at Shelter Scotland’s Morningside shop, helping to sort donations, price items and put out stock – much to the delight of staff, volunteers and customers.

The Edinburgh shop, famous for selling high-end designer goods, recently held its first sale selling a Vivienne Westwood dress, Prada shoes, a Burberry coat and many other designer goods for a fraction of their retail price.

After the sale Mr Murray contacted Shelter Scotland to volunteer his time at the shop.

Ian Murray MP said:

 “I was delighted to have the opportunity to help out at the Shelter Scotland Charity Shop in Morningside, particularly given its 30th anniversary this year, and be able to see firsthand the terrific work being done by the staff especially given the diverse and wonderful nature of the donations that support this excellent organisation.  Since I became the Member of Parliament for Edinburgh South I have seen the essential work Shelter Scotland do to help people in their hour of need.  In these tough economic times and with a chronic lack of housing Shelter Scotland provide invaluable support to families who suddenly find themselves homeless or in desperate need of housing advice.  I would like to say a big thank you to the staff for helping me through my sales apprenticeship today.  Get along and pick up a bargain or two safe in the knowledge that every penny will help others.”

Graeme Brown, Director of Shelter Scotland, said:

“We’re excited to welcome Ian to meet our team of dedicated staff and volunteers and hope he enjoys his time at the Morningside shop. Like many charity retailers, our shops are predominantly staffed by hard working volunteers, who give up what little time they have to help others. I’m sure the staff, volunteers and customers in Morningside will appreciate Ian’s hard work.”

Graeme Brown added:

“At a time when funding for our national and local services is being cut our 42 shops across Scotland are a vital source of income. We understand that not everyone has the time to volunteer, but there are many other ways to help us in our fight against bad housing and homelessness such as donating unwanted goods to one of our shops or making a direct donation via our website – no donation is too small.

“We hope that the people of Edinburgh will continue to support Shelter Scotland, because without their help and generosity our fight to end bad housing and homelessness would be so much harder.”

Local MP stands up to prejudice by signing Holocaust Memorial Day Book of Commitment

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Last week Ian Murray MP signed a Book of Commitment in the House of Commons, in doing so pledging his commitment to Holocaust Memorial Day and honouring those who died during the Holocaust.

Sunday January 27th marked the 68th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the Nazi concentration and extermination camp which is the site of the largest mass murder in history. In the weeks running up to the day, the Holocaust Educational Trust placed a Book of Commitment in the House of Commons, giving MPs the chance to honour those who were persecuted and killed during the Holocaust and encouraging constituents to work together to combat prejudice and racism today.

In signing the Book of Commitment, Ian Murray paid tribute to those who perished during the Holocaust and honoured the extraordinary Holocaust survivors who work tirelessly to educate young people about what they endured, through the Holocaust Educational Trust’s Outreach programme.

In the weeks leading up to and after Holocaust Memorial Day, thousands of commemorative events will be arranged by schools, faith groups and community organisations across the country, remembering all the victims of the Holocaust and subsequent genocides. This year, people will also be encouraged to honour those communities that have been destroyed by genocide and reflect on the importance of coming together to oppose prejudice and hatred.

Ian Murray, MP for Edinburgh South said:

“Holocaust Memorial Day is an important opportunity to remember the victims of the Holocaust and subsequent genocides. I encourage all constituents to mark the day and to join members of our local community in the fight against prejudice and intolerance.”

Karen Pollock MBE, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, said:

“We are proud that Ian Murray is supporting Holocaust Memorial Day this year. It is vitally important that we both remember and learn from the appalling events of the Holocaust – as well as ensuring that we continue to challenge all forms of hatred and bigotry.”

Ian Murray MP welcomes announcement on HMV gift vouchers

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Ian Murray MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Consumer Affairs, responding to the announcement that retailer HMV and its administrator Deloitte are to accept HMV gift cards and vouchers from tomorrow, said:
 
“I’m delighted that HMV and their administrators have reconsidered and will now accept gift cards and vouchers. I’m sure consumers will be relieved that they will be able to use those Christmas gifts after the initial disappointment last week when the administrators said they would not be accepted.  
 
“Following my letter to administrators last week where I asked them to reconsider their decision not to accept vouchers and gift cards, I received a very prompt response for which I am grateful and Deloitte are to be commended for the diligent work.
 
“The further news that a restructuring firm is now in talks with the administrators is positive and I hope that these discussions will prove fruitful in the near future.”

Ian Murray MP urges local primary schools to “Make IT Happy, Make IT Safe”

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Members of Parliament and e-skills UK have launched the seventh year of the Make IT Happy competition, a UK-wide technology challenge for primary school students aged 9 to 11. The competition is run by the Parliamentary Internet Communications and Technology Forum (PICTFOR) and e-skills UK, the Sector Skills Council for Business and Information Technology and is backed by MPs from across the UK.

This year’s competition has been specially designed to help children use the internet safely and creatively. Staying safe online is an important skill even for primary age children, and the competition helps them learn how to make the most of the internet without putting themselves at risk.

Children will be asked to create an infographic – a digital poster – that tells other people what they’ve learned and how they too can be safe on the web. This reinforces the learning and helps spread the word about using the internet securely.

 

£1,200 will be awarded to each of the regional competition finalists, with the overall winning school taking home an additional cash prize of £4,000. Winners will also be invited to attend an awards ceremony to be held at the Houses of Parliament in London in June 2013.

 

Local MP Ian Murray is keen for local primary schools to get involved:

 

Ian said “I have written to all local primary schools to encourage them to get involved with ‘Make IT Happy’ this year. The competition helps children gain invaluable internet safely skills, that can then in turn be passed on to other people. I’m confident that pupils will enjoy the chance to work together on such an exciting and relevant project, as well as having the opportunity to win terrific cash prizes for their school.  There are further benefits to entering as the skills pupils gain from taking part in the competition will also assist them in their transition to secondary school”.  Ian added “I would encourage all local children aged between 9 and 11 years old to log on and take part”.

 

For further information and details on how to enter, please visit the website at http://makeithappy.cc4g.net/.  The closing date for entries is April 6, 2013.

 

About PICTFOR

The Parliamentary Internet Communications and Technology Forum (PICTFOR) provides a forum for MPs, Peers, senior civil servants, academics and ICT professionals to exchange information and opinions. It has evening meetings in a Committee Room of the House of Commons on the policy implications of new technologies, and holds receptions and an annual dinner in the House of Lords. The Committee also provides in-depth briefing papers for Members of Parliament.

 

About e-skills UK

e-skills UK is the Sector Skills Council for Business and Information Technology, rated ‘outstanding’ in the relicensing of Sector Skills Councils.  We work on behalf of employers to ensure the UK has the technology skills it needs to succeed in a global digital economy. Our work covers software, internet & web, IT services, telecommunications and business change.

Find out more at http://www.e-skills.com/
http://www.e-skills.com/” href=”http://www.e-skills.com/”>http://www.e-skills.com

Ian Murray MP calls for administrators to change course and honour HMV gift vouchers

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Ian Murray MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Consumer Affairs, responding to the announcements that retailer HMV – which is in administration – will not honour vouchers or gift cards, said:

 

“HMV is a national institution that has been a feature of our high streets for over 90 years, so it hugely worrying that it has gone into administration.  Not least for the sake of HMV’s employees, we hope a way can be found to keep the business going as to lose the business would be a sad loss to British retail.

 

“It is disappointing that the company have confirmed that they will no longer accept gift cards and vouchers.  Many people will have received HMV gift cards over Christmas and were no doubt looking forward to using them to make a purchase.  We are only are few weeks into January and there will be many people with gift cards and vouchers that they have not yet used.  It will strike consumers as unfair that whilst the company is still trading, they are unable to use gift cards and vouchers.

 

“Particularly given that when Comet went into administration recently a solution was reached whereby consumers could still redeem vouchers, I hope that HMV and its administrators will be able to reconsider their decision and will work to make sure consumers’ gift cards and vouchers are honoured.”