Labour’s Falkirk East candidate chosen for upcoming Scottish Parliament election

Former depute provost Councillor Allyson Black has been chosen to try to win back the Falkirk East Scottish Parliament seat for Labour in May.
Labour candidate Cllr Allyson Black.Labour candidate Cllr Allyson Black.
Labour candidate Cllr Allyson Black.

A councillor for 13 years, she is currently Falkirk Council’s Labour Group spokesperson on health and social care. Her selection was approved after an online meeting of constituency members last week.

After a period nursing in Forth Valley hospitals Allyson went on to be a social care worker, combining that role with being a carer for family members. Since being elected to Falkirk Council she has held the positions of depute provost, depute leader, health and social care partnership chair and opposition spokesperson for economic development.

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She told members of her plans to replace the current local MSP Angus MacDonald (SNP), who is stepping down after ten years at Holyrood.

She said: “I live in this area, care passionately about its people and its welfare. Our area needs someone who knows its issues, who will at every opportunity lobby and campaign to have our area’s significance to the national economy recognised in a way that supports the community as well as industry.

“For the last 10 years we have had an MSP who was more interested in speaking about farmers’ and fishermen’s rights than highlighting the lack of infrastructure in an area which, though at the heart of Scotland’s wealth, has poor outcomes for many of his constituents.

“As he plans his retirement on Lewis, our area is being let down, with a growth deal from both the Scottish and Westminster governments that will do little to improve infrastructure, reduce our carbon emissions which are the highest in Scotland or improve the life chances of our young people.

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“This election offers two choices - a needless vote on the constitution or a vote to invest in our health and social care service, for economic recovery and for creating jobs by investing in public services, care and transport.

“During a worldwide pandemic the constitutional issue must be put to one side while we concentrate on recovery.

“Our health service is on its knees and stretched, and frontline staff in retail, transport and local authorities are struggling, their jobs vital to the health and wellbeing of the nation, while many have to claim benefits to feed their families.

“We will run a positive campaign based on what we will do at Holyrood not what the SNP haven’t done.

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“When Labour was in power one of our proudest achievements was reducing child poverty. Now child poverty and in-work poverty is back to its highest level in decades.

“The best way out is creating employment for all. Nationalising transport and energy, among other actions, would create real opportunities for increasing the number of jobs.”

Constituency chair Kevin Robertson welcomed Allyson’s selection. He said: “There is a real feeling of optimism among our members. We are looking forward to this campaign and to exposing the failure of this SNP government to look after the people of Scotland, their party members’ choice of candidate showing how out of touch they are with the people of Falkirk, their hopes and their ambitions.”