Edinburgh MP shows support for National Eye Health Week

Standard

Ian is backing National Eye Health Week which takes place between 17 – 23 September. The week aims to raise awareness of the importance of eye health and the need for everyone to have sight checks every two years to look after their eyes.

Ian said: “I am delighted to support National Eye Health Week. I encourage all my constituents to find out how they can look after their eye health and to ensure they have their eye health checked by going for a sight test every two years”.

Francesca Marchetti, Chair of the National Eye Health Week Steering Group, said: “Sight is the sense people fear losing the most, yet many of us don’t know the best way to look after our eyes. This is why it is so important you get your eye health tested every two years even if you think your vision is fine as some eye conditions may not show symptoms. Visit ww.visionmatters.org.uk for more information”.

Vote for St. Crispin’s!

Standard

The pupils at St. Crispin’s Special School in Edinburgh would like you to vote for them in a bid to secure a grant of £5000 from the Lloyds Banking Group Community Fund.

If successful the money would be used to attend art workshops and hold an art exhibition highlighting work produced by the young people. As we are a very small school, and this is a public vote, we need your help!

There are two things you can do:

1. Vote online using the link below which should take you straight to ‘St Crispins School Fund’

2. Share this information with other individuals and groups. There are Facebook and Twitter links on the voting page but other imaginative ideas are welcome!

https://www.lloydsbankinggroupcommunities.com/CommunityFund/cf_org_vote_profile.asp?CFOIDS=10000172

It is also possible to vote for St. Crispin’s by texting VOTE EH1 to 61119 (charged at standard network rate) Voting ends on 9th September 2012.

You could make a big difference! Thank you from everyone at St. Crispin’s.

Ian Murray MP gets First Class experience as he turns postie for the day

Standard

Edinburgh South MP Ian Murray got first hand insight into what is involved in delivering the mail when he joined local postman Michael Lunn on his delivery round in South Edinburgh this morning.

The Shadow Business Minister for Postal Affairs was the first of a number of local MPs being invited to go out with postmen and women across Scotland to see the lengths Royal Mail goes to, to deliver the post.

The purpose of the visits over the summer is to give MPs a unique insight into the challenges of delivering mail to every house and business in their constituency, six days a week.

Julie Pirone, Director of Communications Scotland, who briefed Ian before he set off on his walk, said: “We’re delighted that Mr Murray is taking the time to experience the every day challenges faced by our delivery postmen and women.

“The visit gave us the opportunity to show Mr Murray how we are modernising the organisation. We’ve invested some £59 million pounds in Scotland to date in new sorting and delivery equipment as we respond to the changing nature of the modern postbag. We are delivering more parcels and fewer letters than ever before and the tools for the job need to reflect that.”

Ian said: “Postmen and women perform an incredibly important function in our communities, not just delivering communication, but being one of the institutions in society that binds us together for the common good.”

“I wanted to get a real understanding of the work that goes into delivering the mail on a daily basis. There can be no better way of getting that insight than actually going out and doing the job alongside a delivery postman. I was pleased to join  local postman Michael Lunn   who’s been delivering the mail to customers in South Edinburgh for 14 years. It is a service that is loved my millions and one which we should do everything to preserve.”

Royal Mail is currently reviewing and modernising its operation, which means every part of the process from collecting, transporting, sorting and delivering the mail is being improved to increase efficiency.

EDINBURGH SNP CHALLENGED: WHICH SIDE ARE YOU ON?

Standard

Ian Murray, Member of Parliament for Edinburgh South, has today urged local SNP MSPs Jim Eadie, Kenny MacAskill and Gordon MacDonald to clarify their position on the independence referendum.
The decision on whether or not Scotland remains in the UK is due to take place in 2014, and plans for it will be finalised in the coming months.

With recent polls showing support for independence down sharply, some nationalists have suggested having a fall-back second or third option on the ballot paper, while prominent Nationalists such as Margo MacDonald and chair of the independence campaign Blair Jenkins have publicly stated their desire to have a single question. This has been echoed by SNP MPs at Westminster and the Cabinet Secretary for Health in the Scottish Parliament, who is also SNP Deputy Leader, who want one question and one question only.

Now Ian Murray has challenged Jim Eadie MSP, Kenny MacAskill MSP and Gordon MacDonald MSP to publicly state their view and let local people know what suggestion they made in the Scottish Government’s consultation on the referendum with regards to this issue.

Ian Murray MP said: “This is an issue that will affect every single person in Edinburgh forever. We need a clear, single question so the people of Scotland can make their decision once and for all.”

“The nationalist campaign has already been in disarray over the currency question, membership of the EU and NATO, the position of broadcasting and the viability of the Royal Mail, and we now see that they can’t even agree about what question they want on the ballot paper.

Everybody knows that Alex Salmond wants a second question, because he realises that he can’t win the first. It’s time for Edinburgh SNP constituency MSPs to come clean and state whether they support a clear single question, or whether they’ll back Salmond’s desire for a second question that experts say will simply muddy the waters.  The development of devolution is very important and that is why the Scottish and UK Parliaments passed the Scotland Bill.  Where devolution goes next is an important but separate debate which should be considered fully, and not just used as a smokescreen by Alex Salmond to hide the lack of support for separation from the UK.

That’s why I’ve written to Jim Eadie, Kenny MacAskill, and Gordon MacDonald, asking them to publicly state their position. As a local MP, I have made clear I want a single question, and it’s time the SNP did the same. The people of Scotland deserve to know the facts.”

EDINBURGH LABOUR MPS CALL ON PUBLIC TO BACK HIGH SPEED RAIL

Standard

EDINBURGH LABOUR MPS CALL ON PUBLIC TO BACK HIGH SPEED RAIL

Edinburgh Labour MPs Ian Murray, Sheila Gilmore and Mark Lazarowicz have today called on residents to show their support for high speed rail.

This follows a report in The Spectator that predicted the Government was set to make a U-turn on its commitment to build HS2. It asserted that there was ‘a lack of enthusiasm among the people it was supposed to impress: northerners, Midlanders and business.’

Under the Government’s current plans an initial line from London to the West Midlands will be up and running by 2026. This will be extended to Leeds and Manchester by 2033/34. Trains will travel at speeds of up to 225mph.

Passengers in Scotland will benefit immediately as the high speed network will be linked to existing lines, meaning trains will continue up to Edinburgh and Glasgow at conventional speeds. Once the second phase is complete, the Edinburgh to London journey will be cut by an hour to 3 hours 30 minutes.

Sheila Gilmore said:

‘Recent media reports have suggested that the Government is set to make a U-turn on its commitment to build HS2 because there is ‘a lack of enthusiasm among the people it was supposed to impress’.

‘This is completely untrue.’

‘Passengers in Scotland support high speed rail because of the journey time savings and the economic benefits it will bring.’

Mark Lazarowicz said:

‘Scottish Labour MPs have been calling on the Government to build the second phase beyond Leeds and Manchester and on to Edinburgh and Glasgow. While it would be disappointing if the Government fails to do so, it would be a disaster if the project were dropped altogether.’

‘From my discussions with businesses, council representatives, and individual constituents, I can say with confidence that support for HS2 and its early extension to Scotland is as strong as ever’

Ian Murray said:

‘HS2 will benefit Scotland from the outset, and those benefits will be boosted if the project is extended to Edinburgh Glasgow.’

‘Following these false and inaccurate media reports, people in places that stand to gain from high speed rail need to send a clear signal to Government that they back the project.’

‘That’s why today we are encouraging Edinburgh residents to show their support by going to www.campaignforhsr.com/signup<http://www.campaignforhsr.com/signup><http://www.campaignforhsr.com/signup>.’

CHANCELLOR SPINNING OUT OF CONTROL

Standard

Member of Parliament for Edinburgh South Ian Murray MP, has welcomed the announcement by the Chancellor that he will delay the 3p fuel duty rise until the end of the year.

Commenting, Ian Murray MP said: “I welcome this u-turn by the Government on fuel duty, The planned August rise would have hit constituents in Edinburgh South who are already suffering as a result of this Tory-Led Government’s decisions extremely hard, the last thing hard working people in Edinburgh needed, was an extra tax on their fuel, and I’m glad that the Chancellor has listened to the Labour party and reversed this decision.”

The Chancellor announced in the House of Commons on Wednesday that he would delay the rise, following an article written by Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls MP, who called for such a move this morning.

This is the 36th u-turn by the Government (list provided below) and yet another measure that George Osborne has been forced to drop from his budget after pressure from members of the public.

Oil prices have dropped by one fifth over the last few months, but prices at the pump have only dropped by a fraction of that, hitting motorists in Edinburgh extremely hard.

Ian Murray added: “Now that the Chancellor has caught the u-turn bug, I hope that he will listen to the Labour party and my hard-working constituents, and reverse his tax cut for millionaires”

 

Ian Murray MP adopts the Which? Watchdog

Standard

Ian Murray has backed Which?’s Watchdog not Lapdog campaign to show support for a strong, open and proactive financial regulator that stands up for consumers.

The Financial Services Bill which is currently going through parliament will change how the financial services industry is regulated, creating a new regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with responsibility for protecting consumers.

 

Ian Murray, who today adopted the Which? Watchdog agrees that after the financial crisis and disasters like the payment protection insurance (PPI) mis selling scandal, the new regulator must:

 

Be ready to show its teeth - issue fines that are big enough to act as deterrents and promote competition by making sure products are transparent, simple to compare and easy to switch between.

 

Not be afraid to bark - tell consumers when firms are found to have broken the rules, what it is investigating and what it is going to do to stop it.

 

Sniff out dodgy products - take a more proactive approach and ban dodgy financial products and misleading adverts before they cause problems. Lessons must be learnt from the payment protection insurance mis-selling scandal.

 

 

Ian Murray MP says:

 

“At a time when money is tight it’s really important that the new financial regulator is a watchdog that puts consumers at the heart of everything it does.”

 

Which? chief executive, Peter Vicary-Smith, says: 

“People have told us they want a regulator that stands up to the financial services industry and fights on behalf of the consumer. The Which? Watchdog represents everything the new financial regulator must be. We need a financial watchdog that is ready to show its teeth to the banks, bark at poor customer service and sniff out dodgy financial products.

 

To find out whether your friends and family’s MPs have adopted the Which? Watchdog visit www.which.co.uk/watchdogadoption.