Read my award winning eMagazine for March 2015.


Final eMagazine ahead of the General Election
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Welcome to my final eMagazine before the dissolution of Parliament and the General Election on Thursday May 7th.

The UK Parliament will dissolve later this evening at which point I cease to be a Member of Parliament and will become a candidate for the Edinburgh South constituency.

During the general election campaign period, I’m not permitted to hold my usual weekly or monthly surgeries – but my office is able to take up any urgent or continuing cases.  If you need to contact me during that time, then please do so by calling 0131 662 4520 or via email

If I am re-elected, then from Friday 8th May, I will be able to immediately continue to raise issues on your behalf and in Parliament as your elected representative.

Since 2010, it has been my honour and privilege to serve as your MP.  Together, we have achieved so much and I have done my utmost to help local people where I can.  Helping constituents with a wide range of problems is what being an MP is all about. 

My office and I have:

1. Helped over 12,000 constituents directly.
2. Held over 800 advice session (more than any other MP).
3. Spoken to 19,000 constituents on the doorstep.
4. Offered all 36,500 households a home visits.
5. Been ranked 15th most responsive MP in the UK out of 650 by an independent charity.
6.  Been awarded a prestigious parliamentary award for community engagement.

I’m incredibly grateful for all those who have shown their appreciation over the past few years with boxes of chocolates, cakes, flowers and cards.  I am hopeful of being able to continue that from 8th May.

To keep up-to-date with my re-election campaign visit –
Midmar Paddock and Development on Greenbelt Petitions
Last week, I presented two petitions to the House of Commons on “Save the Midmar Paddock” and the Local Development Plan (LDP) to give local people a voice in major planning decisions.
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No calorie cake for all
A very kind local resident delivered this wonderful cake to our office this month to congratulate us on our 800th advice session since 2010.  What a lovely gesture.  Thank you.
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Dilution of local policing harms communities
I wrote an opinion piece for the Edinburgh Evening News expressing the views of many of my constituents and local community groups that they feel their local community police officers have been removed from our local streets.  House breaking has been an increasing problem and Police Scotland need to think about whether a ‘Glasgowisation’ of the police is effective for Edinburgh.
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Guest blog – Global problems need global solutions
In this guest blog, constituent John Cant tells us about SimPol (The Simultaneous Policy) which is the realisation that many of the problems the world faces are global – climate change, financial speculation, environmental destruction, conflict and social justice – and can only be fixed by pushing nations towards solving such global problems in unison.
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Prime Minister avoids questions again
This month, I asked the Prime Minister if we really are “all in this together”.  Perhaps, on reflection, we should change the name of this 30 minute weekly session to Prime Minister’s Answers so he gets the message.
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Supporting WWF and Earth Hour
I’ve signed up to support this year’s Earth Hour, highlighting the importance of protecting the world’s forests.  WWF’s Earth Hour, which takes place on Saturday 28th March at 8.30pm, will this year be highlighting the current campaign for a responsible trade in sustainably-sourced forest products.
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0.7% commitment is fundamental for fairness
Last week I backed legislation to enshrine the UK’s commitment to the world’s poorest people in law, completing a course set out by the last Labour government.
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BIS Questions
At monthly Business, Innovation and Skills Questions, I asked Ministers to confirm whether they would rule the NHS out of TTIP negotiations, something which I’ve been campaigning for for some time.
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#PutFansFirst – Secondary Ticket Markets

I know from talking to sports and music fans across South Edinburgh how much the resent not being able to get tickets to see their favourite team or performer, and then having to pay extortionate prices for them on Secondary ticketing sites. 

Earlier this month, I led the opposition response in the debate in the House of Commons on an amendment that will increase transparency in the secondary market and commit to a full review of the market after the election. It’s great new that the Government has listened to our campaign and will now commit to a a proper investigation of all the problems.

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