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SCOTTISH BUDGET AGREEMENT REACHED

Agreement has been reached in the Scottish Parliament for the 2020/21 budget. As well as the original pledges, the SNP Scottish Government will deliver:

🚌 Free bus travel for under-18s.

🏢 An extra £95m for local authorities – including £6m for North Lanarkshire.

👮‍♀️ £13m for frontline Police and £5m capital.

🌅 £25m on energy efficiency and tackling fuel poverty.

🚲 An extra £5m on rail and £15m on active travel.

Given the increase in North Lanarkshire Council’s funding, I hope Councillors of all parties will meet soon to agree how local people and services can be protected from the relentless onslaught of Tory austerity.

These pledges are in addition to those made earlier this month:

🏥 Record funding of £15bn for Health and Social Care – including £117m in mental health.

🏠 £800m and an additional £300m to build more homes beyond the 50,000 target of this Parliament.

🧒 £3.4bn – part of which will be towards the new Scottish Child Payment which will lift 30,000 children out of poverty.

🚆 £270m in rail investment and an extra £16m on concessionary travel.

👮‍♀️ £37m extra for Policing.

🏢 A real terms increase of 4.3% for local authorities.

💵 For the third consecutive year, more than half of Scottish income tax payers will pay less tax than if they lived elsewhere in the UK.

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MP WELCOMES RECORD HEALTH SPENDING IN SCOTTISH BUDGET

UK GOVERNMENT “MUST DELIVER ON ELECTION PLEDGES”

Marion Fellows, SNP MP for Motherwell and Wishaw, has this week welcomed the Scottish Government’s budget which includes record spending of £15bn for health and social care.

But the Scottish Government’s has had to estimate its budget due to the UK Government setting its budget in March. Scottish Government Ministers weren’t notified of the UK Government’s budget day and found out after it was announced in the media.

Spending is based on commitments made by the Tories during the General Election. If the UK Government does not meet its election pledges, then the Scottish Government’s budget will have to be revised.

Key pledges include:

  • Record funding of £15bn for Health and Social Care – including £117m in mental health;
  • £800m and an additional £300m to build more homes beyond the 50,000 target of this Parliament.
  • £3.4bn – part of which will be towards the new Scottish Child Payment which will lift 30,000 children out of poverty.
  • £270m in rail investment and an extra £16m on concessionary travel.
  • £37m extra for Policing.
  • A real terms increase of 4.3% for local authorities.
  • For the third consecutive year, more than half of Scottish income tax payers will pay less tax than if they lived elsewhere in the UK.

Commenting, Mrs Fellows said:

“The SNP Scottish Government’s budget has committed to invest in the public services we care, build the homes we need, and create the jobs and transport infrastructure that will allow North Lanarkshire and Scotland to thrive.

“The Scottish budget is set against the backdrop of heightened uncertainty and risk, created by the UK Government following their decision to delay the UK budget until March. These are based on commitments made during the general election. Boris Johnson must now deliver on these promises in full.

“The SNP is listening to communities and delivering on their needs. Our NHS and mental health services are being put to the forefront of our budget with record £15bn investment. The new Scottish Child Payment will lift 30,000 children out of poverty. More money is being invested in housing so we can exceed our already ambitious target of 50,000.

“This is a budget for all of Scotland which is being delivered through a fair tax system where for the third consecutive year, more than half of Scottish income tax payers will pay less tax than if they lived elsewhere in the UK.”

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MARION WELCOMES NEW SUPERINTENDENT

MP RAISES PEOPLES’ POLICING PRIORITIES

This week, Marion Fellows, SNP MP for Motherwell and Wishaw, welcomed Lanarkshire’s new Superintendent, Gordon McCreadie, with a meeting to discuss local Policing priorities.

Mrs Fellows and Superintendent McCreadie discussed community priorities such as anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping.

Mrs Fellows heard first hand Lanarkshire Police’s strategy for 2020-23 and the work frontline officers are doing in communities to assist people who are the victims of domestic violence and coercive control, and call-outs to vulnerable people.

Commenting, Mrs Fellows said:

“It was a pleasure to meet with Lanarkshire’s new Superintendent, Gordon McCreadie, and raise with him the issues constituents have raised with me. Our Police are doing a fantastic job and deserve our thanks for their hard work.

“Peoples’ Policing priorities for local communities have been anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping. I have personally noticed an increase in the number of issues with fly-tipping since North Lanarkshire Council ended their free uplift services. We all deserve to live in clean communities. NLC must review this policy.

“We also discussed the increase in call-outs to vulnerable people and people experiencing mental health issues. It was reassuring to hear about the mental health training our officers are receiving so they can properly assist people.

“I also got to hear about the work Police officers are doing in our communities – especially on coercive control and domestic violence. If you’re affected, you are not alone. Reach out.”

People affected by domestic abuse can call Scottish Women’s Aid on 0131 226 6606 or Refuge on 0808 2000 247.

People affected by mental health can call Samaritans on 116 123 or Scottish Association for Mental Health on 0141 530 1000.E

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COLTNESS SURGERY ANNOUNCED

Following a number of complaints from local residents regarding building works and anti-social behaviour, I have arranged a surgery for this Friday. The relevant bodies will be in attendance to speak to people about their issues. No appointment necessary, feel free to come by.

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Keeping our Community Safe

After asking for people to come forward with their Policing issues, this afternoon I met with Chief Inspector Leonard to raise those issues.

We predominantly discussed the recent spike of anti-social behaviour. But we also discussed speeding; the use of trailbikes; drinking, littering and other forms of anti-social behaviour in Kirknethan and central Wishaw; the Police presence in the constituency’s various parks; and domestic violence.

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This Week #6 (2018)

Monday 15th October

On Monday, Marion returned to Westminster and immediately got back to working hard for the people of Motherwell and Wishaw.



Tuesday 16th October

On Tuesday, Marion undertook a number of meetings and duties at Parliament, as well as questioning the UK Government on their lack of their support for Post Offices and Postmasters:

Marion was also involved in the Westminster Hall debate on Road Safety, stating:

I want the Minister to consider the Scottish Government examples that I will give him. Scotland’s road safety framework to 2020 has produced really good results, with cuts in the numbers of accidents. Things that the Scottish Government have done include cutting the blood alcohol limit, and we must take on board the fact that the limit has been reduced from 80 mg to 50 mg, which is lower than for the rest of the UK. We really must look at, and I would like the Minister to think about, the 7.6% reduction in drink-driving as a result of that.

You can read Marion’s contribution in full by clicking here.



Wednesday 17th October

Wednesday provided Marion with the opportunity to participate in the Mental Health: Absence from Work debate, and you can watch Marion’s contribution below:



Thursday 18th October

On Thursday, Marion attended a number of meetings before contributing to the debate on World Menopause Day within the House of Commons. During the Motherwell and Wishaw MP’s contribution, she stated:

Women’s health issues often do not see the spotlight due to ongoing taboos, and it is time for women—younger and older—to speak out. Women are often expected to put up and shut up about the symptoms associated with the menopause or periods, and to feel that talking about it is inappropriate or just moaning, when it is clear that this attitude is just thinly-veiled sexism. The fact is that the menopause and periods, as well as other hormonal conditions such as polycystic ovary syndrome, can have a really debilitating effect on women day to day.

You can read Marion’s contribution in full by clicking here.



Friday 19th October

Marion was back in the constituency office in Motherwell on Friday. The day was busy, with a number of meetings attended including meeting Chief Superintendent Waddell at Motherwell Police Station to discuss a variety of important matters.

Marion meets with Chief Superintendent Waddell.


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Shock police stats reveal at least one domestic attack in Wishaw area every day

Full Story: Shock police stats reveal at least one domestic attack in Wishaw area every day

Figures have been relatively stable in recent years. But if one person continues to be abused in their own home and by those close to them, it is one too many.

I am disappointed that in North Lanarkshire, we have the lowest rate of incidents being recorded as a crime and I have written to Chief Superintendent Roddy Irvine to find out why.

Unfortunately many people are too frightened to come forward and report abuse. And some don’t wish to incriminate people they are close to.

It is therefore essential that vulnerable people are protected as much as possible and are given the support and confidence to speak out.

The Scottish Government is bringing in new schemes and legislation to tackle abuse and violence – particularly against women – through the new domestic abuse offence to better tackle coercive and controlling behaviour and training professionals across Scotland to recognise and act upon the signs of domestic abuse.

If anyone is a victim and needs help, I urge them to come forward and contact in confidence either the Police, Women’s Aid, Fearless or my office.

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Police in Wishaw & Motherwell attacked once every two days

Police in Wishaw & Motherwell attacked once every two days, new figures reveal

Our police officers do exemplary work to keep our communities safe. That often means putting themselves in danger. For that, we all must recognise the great efforts they take to tackle crime and keep us safe.

Recent figures are promising. Knife crime in Lanarkshire, for example, has decreased since 2014. As of 2016, violent crime across Scotland is at a 41 year low. But there is still a long way to go. We cannot be complacent.

The SNP has made it clear that knife crime is unacceptable through education and custodial sentencing. During the course of the previous Scottish Parliament, the SNP Government raised the maximum punishment for carrying a knife from four years to five. The Scottish Government also launched the No Knives, Better Lives programme to educate young people on the dangers and consequences of knife crime.

Likewise, assaults on our police officers are also unacceptable. Police officers are naturally put in dangerous situations, but that is no excuse for anyone attacking these individuals when carrying out their duties. Thankfully, they are provided with the equipment and training needed to keep themselves safe.

I have always held our police force in high esteem. However, following last week’s events in London, I have gained an even greater respect for the men and women who selflessly put themselves in harm’s way to keep us safe

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This Week: Recess Review

21st July – 5th of September 2016

The UK Parliament is an incredibly busy place when it is in session. However, there are often recesses throughout the year. From the 21st of July until the 5th of September, the Parliament was in its summer recess hence why, if you keep an eye on what Marion’s up to through the “This Week” feature, you’d have perhaps noticed no updates over the summer!

Of course, this doesn’t mean that the Motherwell & Wishaw MP has been sitting with her feet up in front the telly! Far from it – Marion has been incredibly busy over the past weeks working hard on casework in her Dalziel Building office, planning for the coming months back at Westminster, and being out and about in the constituency, talking to local people, assisting with issues, and meeting local charities, organisations, and businesses.

Here are some of the highlights from a busy summer back in North Lanarkshire:


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Marion attended the Remembrance Day Service at the Civic Centre to pay tribute to and honour the Far East Prisoners of War. The war in the east was often forgotten about at home as it took place on the opposite side of the world but many prisoners of war were treated abominably in detention and died as a result of dehydration, starvation, disease and exhaustion.

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https://www.facebook.com/LanarkshirePoliceDivision/videos/595020530702952/


The Motherwell & Wishaw MP had a great time at the Lanarkshire Police Fun Day during the summer. Our local police do a fantastic job of keeping our communities safe and it was a brilliant day for children and adults alike.

However, Marion wouldn’t recommend replicating her antics above if you bump into them in the street!

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recess4Marion was keen to drop by the new office of Richard Lyle MSP in Bellshill last month. Richard is the constituency MSP for Uddingston and Bellshill and, therefore, represents the part of Bellshill which Marion represents as an MP for Motherwell & Wishaw. It is important that MPs and MSPs work closely together when assisting constituents with their issues due to the way in which certain matters are devolved to the Scottish Parliament or reserved to Westminster.

Richard’s office can be found at 188 Main Street in Bellshill.


recess5In August, Marion spent time meeting with Aleksandra Bartycha and Katarzyna Wawrzynczak of the fantastic free advice service Way to Independence. Both women currently live in Motherwell and have resided in Scotland for 10 years after moving from their native Poland.

The main task of Way to Independence is often to help people struggling to speak English deal with the likes of GP appointments and application forms. However, the charity offers information, advice and support on a range of matters to anyone in need. The charity also has links with Lanarkshire Deaf Club, with Way to Independence also specialising in helping those who communicate through sign language.

Aleksandra and Katarzyna are based in Evans Business Centre in Bellshill and can be contacted by telephone on 01698 743032 should you require any assistance.

Marion is very proud to represent such selfless people in our communities who are willing to put so much time and hard work into helping those who need it and looks forward to working closely with Way to Independence in the future.


recess6

Marion also visited Fir Park to find out more about the Motherwell Football Club Community Trust, meeting with Alison Wallace (pictured), who is the Trust’s Business & Administration Manager, and General Manager Dawn Middleton in what was a very fascinating and worthwhile couple of hours!

The work undertaken by the Community Trust is phenomenal, providing the constituency with services and projects involving education, health and well-being, employability, and much more. Marion found it incredibly interesting to hear of all the activities, groups, and classes the Trust runs on a regular basis for local people of all ages and all circumstances.

The people of Motherwell and Wishaw should be delighted that such an organisation exists within our community and the MP aims to provide whatever assistance she can to the Trust in the future.

To find out more, have a look at the Motherwell Football Club Community Trust’s website: http://mfccommunitytrust.org.uk/


recess7

Given Marion’s disappointment that CultureNL were pressing ahead with their closure of the Mossend Senior Citizens Centre as part of their wider closures plan, the MP met with Mossend SNP – who ran a campaign to save the Senior Citizens’ Centre – to see what help she can provide.

Marion heard first hand from them their disappointment that the Senior Citizens Centre had been left by the wayside, whilst other community facilities received the rebranding they needed to showcase their facilities.

The name above the door may have been changed to reflect the ability of the community to use the Centre but CultureNL have made no attempt to showcase what the facility has to offer. CultureNL have completely abdicated their responsibility to look at other options for facilities like the Mossend Senior Citizens Centre.

Members of the Mossend SNP said they wanted to see what they called a “Community Hall For All” and Marion wants to support them in that ambition.

The fact that local peoples voices are being ignored whilst CultureNL steamroll ahead with these proposals is outrageous. The Motherwell & Wishaw MP will continue to support those in our community who champion local services and local facilities that make our communities what they are.


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Over 200 women, including the MP, attended the Sparkling Afternoon Tea at Dalziel Studios in Motherwell in early September. This annual event is organised by Kirsty McCourt and Lynsey McCallum, with the support of many local businesses.

As well as generous donations collected on the day for the local food bank, the event raised a whopping £3,300 to be split between The Joan MacGregor Matrimonial Fund and Les Hoey Dream maker Foundation. Well done to Kirsty, Lynsey and everyone involved in this fabulous event!


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Nearing her return to London, Marion was honoured to be asked to open the annual Park Springs Nursing Home Autumn Fair. Attendees were entertained by Irish dancers, singers as well as a piper, which had the majority all jigging away!


So with a busy summer recess back home complete, it is back to Westminster for the Motherwell & Wishaw MP. Marion will continue to champion the interests of local people and local communities in Parliament and her constituency office continues to be available should you require any assistance whatsoever from your MP.

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Police Fun Day

I was delighted to attend the annual Police Fun Day at Motherwell Police Station. It was fantastic to see the local community meet and have fun with their local police force who have been working hard to keep us safe.

PoliceDay2

I also got the opportunity to test out the effectiveness of their riot gear!

https://www.facebook.com/LanarkshirePoliceDivision/videos/595020530702952/

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