Readers' letters: Ian Murray missed chance to help tackle poverty

It’s a bit rich for Ian Murray to place equal blame on the SNP and Tories for poverty (News, September 23).

Monday, 27th September 2021, 7:00 am
(FILES) In this file photo taken on November 19, 2019 Britain's Prime Minister and leader of the Conservative Party, Boris Johnson wears boxing gloves emblazoned with "Get Brexit Done" as he poses for a photograph at Jimmy Egan's Boxing Academy in Manchester north-west England on November 19, 2019, during a general election campaign trip. - Brexit becomes a reality on December 31, 2020 as Britain leaves Europe's customs union and single market, ending nearly half a century of often turbulent ties with its closest neighbours. The UK's tortuous departure from the European Union takes full effect when Big Ben strikes 11:00 pm (2300 GMT) in central London, just as the European mainland ushers in 2021 at midnight. Brexit has dominated British politics since the country's narrow vote to leave the bloc in June 2016, opening deep political and social wounds that still remain raw. (Photo by Frank Augstein / POOL / AFP) (Photo by FRANK AUGSTEIN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Ian backed Boris’ hard Brexit that has exacerbated the energy crisis, decimated Scottish exports and led to labour and food shortages and price increases.

Ian was absent for a vote on a distinct immigration policy for Scotland that could have mitigated the labour shortage.

He failed to turn up for votes on giving devolved governments power over the EU Withdrawal Bill and for approving the aims for international trade agreements, which would have prevented the disastrous Australian trade deal that threatens the livelihood of Scottish farmers.

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He voted not to allow Scottish ministers to regulate to correct deficiencies in post-Brexit UK law without the consent of UK government ministers. As for Ian’s voting record to give the Scottish government the powers it needs to tackle poverty, he voted against a bill to give Scotland the power to make laws on child and working tax credit and national insurance.

It’s clear which side Union-Jacket Ian is batting for. It’s not Scotland’s.

Leah Gunn Barrett, Edinburgh.

Are these restrictions really necessary?

I do not doubt that there are people who attend A&E when they could phone 111 or their GP, but telling us to attend A&E only if it is necessary is part of a developing pattern

CalMac, too, tells ferry users that they should ‘only travel if necessary’.

Nationalised services are under great pressure and I wonder what will happen when Scottish railways are nationalised. With rail services being reduced, perhaps there will be banners at train stations saying: ‘Is your journey really necessary’?

Supporting services is about choices and priorities. For island dwellers ferries are often quite literally a lifeline.

We hear a lot about how Scotland could be like Denmark. Are there aged and inadequate ferries plying the waters between Danish islands or Scandinavian countries? I don’t think so.

The Scottish government spends millions on ‘hubs’ in foreign countries which already have British embassies that represent Scotland’s needs.

What with that and providing Gaelic language instruction for the police force, among other things, a lot of money could be saved to spend on the priorities that Scots actually want, such as a functioning A&E service and reliable ferry links to Scottish islands.

Jill Stephenson, Edinburgh.

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