18th September 2018
Established 1872. Online since 1996.

Miriam Brett to stand for SNP in general election

Miriam Brett is to stand in a bid to represent Orkney and Shetland in the upcoming general election for the SNP.

Miriam, 25, was born and bred in the isles, living between Bressay and Walls.

She previously worked in progressive policy research, before taking up the post as the senior economic advisor to the SNP Westminster Group.

Commenting on the selection, Miriam said:

“It was a privilege to grow up in such a unique and beautiful community, and I cannot think of a greater honour than representing my home constituency in parliament.

“People across these isles have needlessly been subjected to harmful, counterproductive cuts under both the Liberal Democrat-Conservative coalition and the current UK government. We need only to look at the food bank usage across these isles to see the damage that this has caused.

“The SNP is the only opposition to have consistently voted against austerity, and I will use my voice at Westminster to unapologetically reject these cuts.

“The harsh realities of a hard Tory Brexit pose a very real threat to our communities, from the need to protect EU citizens living in our isles, to the need to ensure that local businesses do not face hardship.

“The SNP has demonstrated time and time again that we are an effective opposition to the Tories, and will continue to ensure that communities across Scotland have their voice heard.

“If elected, I promise to represent the issues facing our community in Westminster, and to work tirelessly to serve every one of my constituents.”

Commenting on the selection of Miriam, SNP MSP for the Highlands and Islands, Maree Todd added: “Miriam is an inspirational young woman who was a leading light in the YES campaign. She will be a strong voice for Shetland and Orkney in Westminster as well as a breath of fresh air. A bright young local lass keen to improve her community.”

29 comments

  1. ian tinkler

    A fabulous young lady. I hate her politics but compared to Ali C, what can one say.

    Reply
  2. Ali Inkster

    Since Miriam is representing the snp up here maybe she will answer this question. When her party takes an independent scotland into the eu and the cfp without the hague agreement, which boats from the Shetland fleet should be scrapped this time to achieve this. I would appreciate it if she could answer and not the usual crowd changing the subject.

    Reply
    • gavin weir

      I do not speak for the SNP, but if Scotland is to enter the EU, there would be negotiations first. Fishing is an important area for Scotland, so exceptions to the Treaties might well be sought. Such opt outs are already in place for four member States in the EU, for different issues.
      If Scotland could not negotiate a deal in the interests of the country, then I would suggest we would be better entering EFTA and trading through the EEA.
      We do not know, and the media are not asking, what the UK government will do with fishing. It should be remembered that Ted Heath sold out the fishing industry a generation ago. The May government has already penciled in fisheries to placate the Spanish in pre-negotiation papers.

      Reply
  3. Gordon Harmer

    I would like Miriam to give her views on the SNP education record they have cut teachers by 4,000 since they came to power and on class sizes, they promised primary school class sizes of 18, but they’re now 23.5.”

    Reply
  4. Peter Hamilton

    Who does not yet understand that ConDem austerity has tied the SNP’s hands? It is not them that cut teacher numbers but they had little choice but to pass cuts on to councils.

    I am waiting now to see direct questions put to Tavish and Alastair which you can be sure they will not answer.

    Here is one. Why do the local Lib Dems find it so hard to take a position on Shetland Charitable Trust? Is it purely because they are the establishment and therefore cannot criticise other worthies? Where are their principles? See-no-evil, hear-no-evil, speak-no-evil… no damned use. Miriam would be a breath of fresh air.

    Reply
    • Gordon Harmer

      Mr Hamilton, were you educated at the Diane Abbot school of mathematics?

      Reply
      • Bill Hall

        Cheap jibe! There are no numbers in Mr Hamilton’s post!

      • Ali Inkster

        Maybe there are no numbers in Peters comment for the good reason that while holyrood received an increase the SNP chose to decrease the money to councils?

      • Gordon Harmer

        @ Bill Hall, first a trip to Specksavers and then read Mr Hamiltons first sentence.

    • Michael Garriock

      No, Mr. Hamilton, we understand that the Scottish Government has rolled over and accepted what pittance it was given by Westminster, rather than fight tooth and nail to drag kicking and screaming out of Westminster adequate funding for Scotland’s public services. We also understand the Scottish Government has chosen not to use tax varying powers to raise funds to alleviate the impact of funding cuts, and we are well aware that they enacted a ‘vote winner for us bribe’ policy of freezing Council Tax increases for a number of years, further exacerbating local authority funding.

      That aside, if we had never been foolish enough to join the EU and establish Scottish, Welsh and N. Irish ‘parliaments’ in the first place, which lets face it are nothing but bottomless money pits of salaries, expenses and grandoise buildings serving no useful purpose, we’d have a whole lot more tax dollars to play with and spend on actual services. The whole machine of government is now so oversized and cumbersome, it eats so much to exist that there is nothing left but a mere pittance for the services they are supposed to be providing.

      Reply
      • Graham Fleming

        What services should the British government be providing then – Mr Garriock?,is that it’s world policing budget(perpetually poking it’s nose in other people’s countries).Or maybe it’s budget for nuclear weapons.( With a massive death toll of 150 million already),maybe fruitcake farm’s motto THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH really is It’s new global ambition again!

      • Michael Garriock

        Graham Fleming, Would you care to elaborate why you addressed your comment at me?

        My earlier comment addressed the failure of the Scottish Goverment to secure an adequate funding package for themselves from the Westminster Government, their refusal to use the other funding avenues open to them, bribing local authorities to also not use some of the funding options open to them, and the waste of public money financing the machinery of the un-necessary and unproductive Brussels, Holyrood, Welsh and N. Irish political empires. I made no mention of my views, should I hold any, on the spending policies of the Westminster Government, that you wax lyrical about.

        So, Mr. Fleming, I have no clue what on earth you are going on about, or the relevance of your chosen subject matter to any discussion I have participated in.

    • Ali Inkster

      Peter would do well to take note of how many scoti nationalists are part of the unelected SCT.

      Reply
  5. Gordon Harmer

    So no answer to question number one.
    Maybe Miriam could answer these two questions instead. The SNP promised to work with employers to help them with the practical support they need to tackle skills shortages, SNP Manifesto, page 54.
    Promise broken, age restrictions remain on many modern apprenticeships meaning grants unavailable to adults.
    They also promised to scrap the Council Tax but instead it has been increased, SNP manifesto page 6.

    Reply
  6. ian tinkler

    Miriam claims, “People across these isles have needlessly been subjected to harmful, counterproductive cuts under both the Liberal Democrat-Conservative coalition and the current UK government. We need only to look at the food bank usage across these isles to see the damage that this has caused. “The SNP is the only opposition to have consistently voted against austerity, and I will use my voice at Westminster to unapologetically reject these cuts. How very, sorrowful, Miriam, how about using your voice to point out to you employers, the SG/SNP that proportionally, for every pound Westminster austerity has cut from Scotland, the SNP has cut near enough, three pounds from Shetland! You are a Shetlander; you should be fighting for Shetland, not peddling the Salmond Sturgeon divisive myths. You must already know that. Clearly, you apparently do not care, not a good way to start your political career, just another career politician, playing with the truth.

    Reply
  7. Gordon Harmer

    This little clip on You Tube from Peter Malcolmson proves Miriam Brett is not about Shetland but like Sturgeon she is all about Scottish independence. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Im61CFXdgdk&list=PLWHHdSe2zKYfbCkj5mxeGHd3ctpw35mRT
    Just what do people like Peter Malcolmson not understand about democracy and the vote in 2014, Scotland and more so Shetland said NO to independence. Then as part of the UK we all said NO to the EU.

    Reply
    • John Tulloch

      They’re all leaving their respective “sinking ships”, Gordon – Wills, Hamilton, now Malcolmson, after keeping their heads down until now. Who’s next, Brian Smith?

      There’s something braaly creepy about this sudden, synchronised “coming out”, after years of dissembly – some admit campaigning for Labour while covertly voting SNP, running campaigns against the charitable trust, SNP convener McGregor “luckily” walking in unopposed to the SIC. Etc….

      Voters are sick of this kind of behaviour, “back door deals” between minor local politicians. It will all backfire on them, these electoral ‘lead balloons’.

      Not least, because “Peak SNP” has clearly passed and the SNP is on the way down.

      Reply
      • Brian Smith

        Bonkers.

    • Graham Fleming

      Ha ha Mr Harmer when did the British state ever truly believe in democracy a very useful cover story when required.

      Reply
  8. Peter Hamilton

    Ali makes an important point re. how many SCT trustees are influential in the SNP. I wait to be informed, but Shetland’s manipulating movers and shakers have long sought to dominate and misdirect the local Lib Dems who ought, long ago, to have lanced the SCT boil.

    Elections to SCT would never be fought or won on a party political basis, but would prevent domination by any one group of vested interests as we have seen with the Viking Energy raiders.

    Let’s hope Shetland SNP are more vigalent than our laissez faire establishment gliberals. Shetland SNP’s first councillor, Robbie McGregor’s position on democratic reform for SCT is nice and clear. This is more than can be said for our fence-sitting Lib Dem MSP Tavish. Anyone for more fudge?

    Reply
    • Ali Inkster

      There are more than not SNP members running the unelected SCT, Could it be a long term play by them to first off threaten the democracy of the trust then for two of the loudest proponents for democracy to cry SNP as they charge in to save it?

      Reply
    • Johan Adamson

      The SNP are pro Viking are they not? So they would be allowed to be appointed to SCT? But might not be voted there? Is that not Ali’s point?

      Reply
  9. John Haswell

    I note that every comment so far is by a male (of a certain age). I am another one. However, I will support Miriam all the way. The film title ‘No Country for Old Men’ springs to mind – or is it ‘The Times They are a Changing’?

    Reply
  10. Johan Adamson

    What have the SNP done for Shetland, or indeed anywhere other than the central belt? Centralisation of jobs? Wind turbines? Expensive transport links? Positive rural and fishing policy?

    Reply
    • Brian Smith

      Free care for the elderly, free prescriptions and fee-less university education; they have resisted water privatisation and marketization of the NHS.

      Reply
  11. ian tinkler

    The actual truth, the SNP has failed in every devolved area, just a simple fact.
    The Scottish government’s record is appalling, worse than England in all areas. Inexcusable considering, a 10% higher per-capita spend than the rest of the UK, thanks to the Barnet formula, yet Scotland still flounders.
    In Education, Scotland achieved it was worst ever performance in the PISA surveys last year. Scotland has plummeted down the league tables for maths, reading and science when all developed. Scotland’s ranking dropped from 11th to 23rd for reading since 2006, from 11th to 24th for maths and from 10th to 19 for science recording, its worst ever ratings.
    The chairman of BMA Scotland warns the NHS is at breaking point. The SNP target for hospital waiting times missed. A person living with cancer will now wait 31 days longer in Scotland for treatment than in England. After ten years fully devolved Scottish NHS, Glasgow still has the lowest life expectancy of any part of the UK. In fact, if you are Scottish you can expect to die a full two years earlier than your counterpart in any other part of the UK.
    I would just love Miriam Brett to honestly explain this record of underachievement from the SNP!

    Reply
  12. Gordon Harmer

    New figures released today have shown that reading and writing standards among pupils in Scotland have fallen to ‘shameful’ levels.
    The latest Scottish Survey for Literacy and Numeracy (SSLN) showed a rise in the percentage of pupils who are functionally illiterate from 7% to 16% in the last four years.
    Fewer than half of S2 pupils in Scotland were performing well in writing, down from 64% in 2012.
    The figures also showed that Scotland’s attainment gap continues to exist, with pupils from the least deprived areas outperforming those from the most deprived areas at all stages, with the gap similar to that seen in 2012.
    Despite the findings in the SSLN, the SNP Government are still planning to cancel all future reports.
    These are shameful results which show that over its ten years in office this SNP government has failed a generation.
    I remember a sound bite “education, education, education. I also remember Sturgeon asking to be judged on her record, well on the 8th of June the electorate will judge her and her MPs.

    Reply
  13. Derick Tulloch

    It’s not worth bothering to reply to Ian’s Alternative Facts, but it does bring to mind an actual fact.

    Which is that Section 1(2) of the Health and Social Care Act 2012, in England, abolished the duty on the Secretary of State to directly provide a Health Service, by amending the duty, in the National Health Service Act 2006 (which duty had been in place since 1948) to directly provide the service. Effectively the legal underpinning of the NHS in England no longer exists. it’s simply a brand name for a variety of failing privatised services.

    2006 Act
    (2) The Secretary of State must for that purpose provide or secure the provision of services in accordance with this Act

    2012 Act
    (2) For that purpose, the Secretary of State must exercise the functions conferred by this Act so as to secure that services are provided in accordance with this Act.

    Reply
  14. Johan Adamson

    Im actually really worried about education. We in Shetland have great schools, and I know that the bairns have had a great primary education, performing well under the curriculum for excellence. In a composite class, one has been able to perform to levels above the primary level 2 in P6 and P7, I couldn’t be happier with their class teacher. But I have friends in the central belt whom I know have to deal with large class sizes because of local authority cuts, and have, in some cases, just taken them out to a private school. I would make the assumption that some bairns in the central belt probably have levels of numeracy and literacy as in the above report. And I hear that the CofE has created wide differences in secondary schools and how all the new exams are taught. Are standards now lower and that is why more highers are passed? As they go up to secondary school, I would like to know that they get a world class education as I did.

    Reply

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