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Central Ayrshire

Central Ayrshire is located in the south west of Scotland. The seat was created in its current form in 2005 and has been held by Labour ever since.

The current member of parliament is the Labour Party’s Brian Donohoe who has served since 2005 (1992-2005 in Cunninghame South).

2010 General Election Results (Adjusted for non-voters)
Central Ayrshire

For more information, click here to visit the Wikipedia article.

Candidates

Veronika Tudhope

Background
I am a longstanding member of Scottish green Party, this is the second time I have stood for election for them.
In 2001 I was a Green list candidate for Central Region in Scottish Parliamentary Elections. I have a consistent interest and involvement in social and environmental justice from 1984 (Founder member of Glasgow University Green Group) to the recent Scottish referendum. I was ‘Green’ in my outlook and life choices long before I joined the party.
My specialist area is peace, I am a pacifist and long-standing peace activist. Currently I am vice-chair of Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (Scottish CND) and an executive member of UK CND. In 2007 I was co-founder of the Anti-Trident Party, a campaigning tool to highlight the issue of trident Nuclear weapons.

My social experience of paid and voluntary work includes
• A good education, including a degree in Archaeology form the University of Glasgow and a post-graduate teaching qualification form Moray House college of Education.
• More than eight years’ experience of administering a national charity
• More than four years direct experience working in a large Royal Mail delivery office, including three years’ experience as Union (CWU) Health and Safety rep.
• I set up and ran a successful business selling books online for 5 years
• Training in counselling and non-judgemental support as a Breastfeeding Supporter.

I have lived in Ayrshire since 1990, I brought up my children here and am well rooted in the local community. Among the personal qualities I bring to this role are that I am hardworking reliable and resourceful. If I elected I intend to be conscientious in representing my constituents’ interests and helping them with their concerns.

1. What do you plan to do in order to make sure you remain ‘in touch’ with the electorate?
The kind of MP I want is an accessible one that I am likely to meet at the supermarket or at a local meeting. That’s the kind I want to be, though I think it will mean a lot of time spent on the train to and from London.
2. What makes you the best candidate for this constituency?
My agenda is environmental justice, social justice and peace. Each of these will benefit Ayrshire on it own, Scotland and the World.
3. What has the current Member achieved that you believe has been successful?
Despite his support for Nuclear Weapons and Trident renewal for several years Mr Donohoe allowed Ayrshire CND to hold regular meetings in his constituency offices.
4. In your opinion, is austerity working? What should we take from the state of the economy during this Government’s tenure?
I think Austerity is the wrong answer. In fact the question is wrong too. There is money around, but it is not fairly distributed. I am in favour of redistributing our resources more fairly and injecting money at the bottom of the economy to support businesses and services.
5. Does (legal) immigration need more limitations or is it vital for the UK?
We need to rewrite the narrative. The British emigrated all over the world for centuries and never once doubted that they were bringing assets to the countries they travelled to. Equally, we can welcome immigrants to this country knowing they and their children will be assets to our society and economy.
6. Many people are concerned about the cost of living in the UK, with wages having failed to rise in line with the price of food, energy and rent in recent years. How can this be corrected?
The minimum wage of £10 an hour, equal to the living wage, advocated by the Scottish Green Party would give people money to spend. Rent controls and more social housing are also needed. The price of energy needs to be fairly calculated, this is a social service and we are losing out where maximum profit is being extracted. Food is more difficult as good quality food must be priced appropriately but more locally sourced food would certainly help.
7. How would you like to see the NHS change in the future in order to become more successful?
I want to see and end to the privatisation of the NHS. I want to see less money spent on Nuclear weapons which kill and main people and more spent on Health services which care and cure.Our approach to health could be more proactive, rather than reactive with investment in a healthy nation by protecting our healthy environment, encouraging healthy lifestyles and making policy decisions which safeguard health.
8. What measures do you think need to be taken to decrease unemployment, particularly youth unemployment and those who have never been employed?
To decrease unemployment more jobs are needed! We are told that there are plenty of jobs but on closer inspection they are low paid, low hours or zero hours. It is necessary to encourage local businesses which are connected to the community and transition towards a jobs-rich economy which respects the environment. The SGP plans to invest in green industrialisation and the homes, transport and energy we need to for a low-carbon future. For young people we need to invest in training in these industries . We intend to raise the wage for apprentices from the current low pay to the living wage.
9. Does the lack of diversity in Parliament equate to a lack of representation?
The Westminster system makes it difficult for small parties to have a voice and I believe it is unnecessarily adversarial. Clearly there is also a problem with diversity in terms of gender and ethnicity,. I believe the faces in the chamber should more loosely resemble the faces out on the street. The SGP will campaign for electoral reform.
10 . If an EU Referendum were to take place, how would you encourage your constituents to vote and why?
I believe the EU is a good thing.The Scottish Green Party is in favour of a referendum and would encourage constituents to vote to remain in the EU and aim to make some changes to the organisation to give us the maximum benefit.

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