EK News – 5/12/16
This weekend for Small Business Saturday, I was delighted to champion the day by announcing the winners of my own constituency Small Business Awards 2016. Small Businesses are the bedrock of our local economy and important for local jobs and I believe it is crucially important as MP that I support their development. Scottish Government action to support small businesses across Scotland includes the small business bonus and the £500M growth fund. Across South Lanarkshire we have 8,585 local enterprises providing 34,680 jobs with a turnover of £2.987M. In a tough competition, this years’ Small Business winner, with most nominations, was Cake Stuff in Lesmahagow, who are a Living Wage Employer and have gone from strength to strength exporting across the UK. The winner of the Most Inclusive Business Award was DNDP Couriers from East Kilbride, who are a social enterprise providing employment opportunities for people with disabilities. Both small businesses will have their achievements marked in Parliament on an Early Day Motion celebrating their contribution to our economy and community and I will present them with a framed copy of the EDM.
The 3rd of December marked International Day of Persons with Disabilities. As Chair of the Disability APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group), I was delighted to open the Porter Mobility Matters Conference at East Kilbride’s Holiday Inn. We heard inspirational stories from service users during the day for whom prosthetics and orthotics had led to rehabilitation, independence, building of self-esteem and had transformed their lives. I am pleased to currently be working with Disability Sport Scotland to help bring opportunity and inclusion to young people with disability across the constituency.
I spent Saturday morning at the Town Centre with the “Stay in East Kilbride” Centre One and Post Office campaigns. “Stay in East Kilbride” are publicising the upcoming meeting which I will be attending. It is so important that we support our local services and jobs which are integral to local prosperity. I am disgusted with Tory plans to close Centre One and the threat to our Crown Post Office will have a huge detrimental effect on the economy of East Kilbride and is totally unacceptable for our community.
Thank you to all of the schools who have taken part in my MP Christmas Card Competition this year. We had fantastic entries from ten schools. The winner will be announced this week and their design will go to the printers and used as my Christmas card 2016. The top three entries and a winner from each school will also receive book vouchers to encourage their ongoing learning and participation in our First Minister’s reading challenge.