As part of our election coverage we have approached every candidate asking them to introduce themselves, and let us know the issues that are important to them, whether local or national. The following response is from Scottish National Party candidates, Alistair Bain and Ann Bain, both of whom are standing for election in the Cowdenbeath ward.
Ann Bain and Alistair Bain
Ann Bain and Alistair Bain, your SNP candidates for the Cowdenbeath Ward. We have lived in the area for almost 30 years, and have been local councillors for the last 10. On May the 4th we ask you to place your trust in the SNP, and vote Team Bain for Cowdenbeath.
We believe the best people to decide the future of our communities are the people who live in our communities. If elected we will empower local communities, and bring decision making closer to you by ensuring Area Committees can make real and meaningful decisions. The Scottish government has committed to consult on and introduce new legislation to decentralise local authority functions, budgets and democratic oversight to local communities. We will support this commitment if elected, and ensure local people are given much more control over how public money is spent in our area.
In government, the SNP has made closing the attainment gap in our schools our defining mission. Councils play a vital role in education – supporting children from their early years right through to early adulthood. In Fife we will strive to reverse the £3million education cuts introduced by the current administration, that have been described as “a recipe for disaster” by the teachers union EIS. We will use the funding provided by the Scottish Government to maintain teacher numbers and pupil teacher ratios to ensure children and young people get the best learning experience. We will target resources to where the need is greatest, with more funding available to schools in the most deprived communities.
We will put more money directly into the hands of head teachers. This year alone the SNP Government is investing £120 million in schools across the country, with almost £740 thousand for schools in the Cowdenbeath to close the attainment gap.
An SNP Fife Council will work with the Scottish Government to transform the provision of early learning and childcare. We will almost double free childcare to 30 hours a week by 2020. This provision will be flexible and delivered in a way that best suits parents and families’ needs.
SNP Councillors will focus on improving outcomes for looked after children and young people, to ensure every young person can fulfil their potential. An SNP Council will listen to care experienced young people, and work in close partnership with the Scottish Government on its national review of the care system.
We believe that in a modern society, it is outrageous that children still grow up in poverty and families have to visit foodbanks, we commit to work towards delivering a fairer Fife for all. An SNP council will work towards making Fife a place where people from all backgrounds, nationalities, genders, faiths and sexual orientations can thrive. We are committed to taking actions to make our area fairer, campaigning for and advocating the real Living Wage across Cowdenbeath and Fife. We will also look at taking measures to reduce the number of people who experience homelessness. We believe that everyone has the right to a safe, warm and affordable home, the Scottish Government has committed to building 50,000 homes across Scotland over the next 4 years, an SNP council would do its part to achieve this ambitious commitment.
In driving to make this area fairer and more prosperous, an SNP administration will work with, not against, the Scottish Government to realise this ambition across our area and the rest of Fife. This election is about local issues, on May 4th vote Ann Bain 1 and Alistair Bain 2, to elect local champions who will work for the Cowdenbeath area and Fife.