Recent News

Recent News

OPINION ALLAN DORANS MP: A Commons tribute to Her Majesty
OPINION ALLAN DORANS MP: A Commons tribute to Her Majesty

IN THESE sad days following the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, it seems inappropriate and unimportant to write simply about my recent activities representing you as your Member of Parliament for Ayr, Carrick, and Cumnock.

However, I wished to share with you the tribute paid by me to the late Queen, on your behalf, in the House of Commons on the day following her death.

I was called to speak by the Deputy Speaker, Dame Eleanor Laing MP at about 7pm, and due to the number of Members wishing to pay tribute my contribution was limited to three minutes.

In common with the majority of Members who spoke, my tribute included reference to how the Queen and her life of service and duty influenced me personally.

Here is an extract from my tribute. It may be viewed in full on my website at www.allandoransmp.scot

“Thank you, Madame Deputy Speaker. It is a privilege to have the opportunity to express my sincere personal sympathies and condolences and those of my constituents in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock on the death of Her late Majesty the Queen.

“The late Queen will be remembered with great affection, especially for her service, duty, humility, humour, and faith.

Our thoughts and prayers are with King Charles III, the Queen Consort, and the wider royal family at this sad time.

“I met the late Queen in 1973 when, as a 17-year-old cadet in the Metropolitan Police, I was invited with others to attend a royal garden party in the grounds of Buckingham Palace.

"Her late Majesty chose to speak with me, probably because I was in uniform; we all know how much she valued her uniformed services.

“Her royal presence, her smile and her gentleness left a lasting impression on me.

“I am sure that everyone who has ever served as a member of our armed services will be able to relate closely to that sentiment, as will anyone who has proudly served in any capacity in the name of the Queen and all she stood for.

“It is with both sadness and joy that we celebrate the unparalleled contribution the Queen made in her 70 years as sovereign, recognising her devotion to duty and the decades of public service she gave to the people of the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth, and the world.

“There is a distinct and profound sense of loss on the death of the Queen throughout Scotland, to where she is bound by close ties of ancestry, affection, and duty.

“Her late Majesty was descended from the royal house of Stuart on both sides of her family, and she has always held a special place in the hearts of the people of Scotland.

“I know she also held a similar affection for Scotland, its culture, and its people.

“The next few weeks are a time for reflection and remembrance and to give thanks to God for the life of an extraordinary individual, the like of whom we will never see again.

“Finally, on behalf of my constituents of Ayr, Carrick, and Cumnock, thank you, your Majesty, for your life of service; God bless you and may you rest in eternal peace.”

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Monday September 26th 2022
August Newsletter 2022
August Newsletter 2022

You can now download my newsletter for the month of August below:

Download the August 2022 Newsletter

If you would prefer an email copy each month, please email allan.dorans.mp@parliament.uk with YES in the subject heading to subscribe.

Date added: Tuesday August 30th 2022
MP visits phase two of new Cumnock flood protection scheme
MP visits phase two of new Cumnock flood protection scheme

Allan Dorans MP visited Phase 2 of New Cumnock’s £8.97 million flood protection works recently to receive an update from the Ayrshire Roads Alliance and the main contractor, Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd.

Mr Dorans was joined onsite by Councillor Neal Ingram, cabinet spokesperson for community safety, roads and transportation and community cohesion, Councillor Maureen McKay, leader of the Labour Opposition Group, Councillor Neill Watts, depute leader of the Conservative Opposition Group and Kevin Braidwood, head of roads, Ayrshire Roads Alliance.

They received an update on the extensive project, which started in May 2021 and which is already protecting residential and commercial properties near the Afton Water and River Nith. The works include a combination of engineering measures including 900m of earth embankments, 1200m of reinforced concrete walls and 600m of riverbank strengthening.

Phase two of the project, due to the extensive and complex nature of the work, has been split into six main work areas -South of Afton Bridgend; both sides of the river north of Afton Bridgend; the car park area at the shops; reinforcement of embankments within the scope of the scheme, which has been completed; the wall to the rear of Miller Road, which has been completed and the clearing of trees and protection of the riverbank at Castlemains Farm.

The original plan was for each phase to be completed in order however the worldwide materials shortage experienced last summer had an impact on the project with work being reorganised, where possible, and some phases being completed earlier than scheduled. The shortage of concrete, in particular, has led to an inevitable delay and it is anticipated that the scheme will be fully completed by February 2023, just two months behind schedule.

Councillor Neal Ingram said: “It was great to welcome Allan Dorans, MP to New Cumnock and to receive a detailed update on phase two of New Cumnock’s £8.97m flood protection scheme from the Ayrshire Roads Alliance and our main contractor. This scheme is so extensive that it is one of the only handful in the whole country that is modelled on a one in two hundred year, plus climate change, flooding event.

“Phase 1 of the scheme that was completed at the Leggate is already offering protection to the residents there. While SEPA, in conjunction with the scheme, has being doing improvements on the River Nith, with their embankment setback works and this has already increased storage capacity in the Nith so that it is already dropping levels in the Afton Water during rainfall events prior to the scheme being fully completed.

“No one would ever want to see a repeat of the devastating floods of 2013 and 2015 or the heartbreak it brought to so many good people. This extensive scheme will help to protect the village from the devastation of flooding and will bring security to the local community. It will also mean that local residents and businesses will be in a position to purchase building insurance, which really is life-changing.”

Allan Dorans, MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, added: “I was delighted to receive a comprehensive briefing on the progress of the New Cumnock flood protection scheme this week from the Ayrshire Roads Alliance and the main Contractors, Wills Bros.

“The work has been a challenging civil engineering project which has successfully overcome a number of significant obstacles including the requirement to divert a major gas main and other utilities.

“My thanks to the Ayrshire Roads Alliance and Wills Bros for the progress to date and I look forward to the successful completion of the project early next year.”

View this article on Scottish Housing News website

Date added: Friday August 26th 2022
MP praises innovative thinking at CoRE project
MP praises innovative thinking at CoRE project

East Ayrshires flagship Community Renewable Energy (CoRE) project earned praise from local MP Allan Dorans as he visited Cumnocks Barony Campus this week to hear first hand how plans are progressing for the innovative, multi-million pound green energy initiative, which is part of the Ayrshire Growth Deals £251.5million investment across the area.

Welcoming Mr Dorans, Depute Provost, Claire Leitch said: "While it may take a bit of imagination to visualise exactly what were creating here in the Cumnock area, it is nothing compared to what our planners and partners in have envisaged for this exciting, ground breaking project.

“Of course without the ground breaking work of our forebears in this area, much of this project would not be possible. We are rightly proud of our mining heritage, so it is fitting that well be taking communities who used to lead power generation in this country, and re-empowering them to be at the forefront of a new generation of renewable, sustainable energy.

“Perhaps the most exciting aspect of this is the way in which the various teams behind this project have come together and are working so well. Their proper “joined up” thinking will make sure that no one will be left behind as we realise our ambitions ambitions for creating a new way of supplying constant energy.

“At a time when the biggest single issue worrying people is the spiralling cost of energy CoRE has taken on even more importance.

"Were focusing strongly on creating local jobs, upgrading housing to be as energy efficient as possible, and creating local networks for energy and heat supply.

"CoRE will not only help us insulate buildings against loss of heat, it will also insulate our local economy against the fluctuations of international markets."

Mr Dorans then heard a presentation about the £24.5 million project, funded by the UK Government and East Ayrshire Council, which has two main aims.

Firstly, the setting up of a suite of demonstrator projects which will showcase and develop new technologies, looking at how they can be integrated, to allow communities in and around the Cumnock area to move to a low carbon circular economy with a strong focus on community wealth building to achieve net zero targets.

Secondly, a low carbon centre of excellence will be built to house a diverse mix of engineers, research scientists and carbon friendly businesses, giving them a space to come together under one roof to research and develop new solutions with existing and emerging technologies to help bridge the gap between supply and demand and cut reliance on the national grid for local power.

CoRE will take account of every aspect of life in the area, looking at retrofitting older properties and using cutting edge design in new build housing to cut emissions as far as possible.

In doing so, education pathways will be created, in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) and opportunities created in construction trades, business and infrastructure development.

East Ayrshire is rich in resources, with wind farm production being over capacity at times. One of the big future challenges of energy supply is making sure that excess power can be stored for use on calm days and peak times when demand is high.

By looking at the possibilities for hydrogen production from the water in deep and open cast mines, using excess wind energy, it’s hoped to create “hydrogen batteries” and a low carbon fuel source for larger vehicles, while expansion of active travel and electric charging points will cut demand for fossil fuels.

At the same time, heat contained in the deep mines, former slag heaps and open cast sites can also be harnessed to provide collective heating systems.

All these elements are designed to cut energy costs and emissions for the local population, create educational and job opportunities, upgrade housing and transport and protect the surrounding natural environment.

The knock-on effect will be to cut energy demand, lower costs for householders and create new transport modes and career opportunities, all of which will help boost prosperity, health and wellbeing.

Allan Dorans also viewed the site at Knockroon, which lies adjacent to the Barony Campus, where construction of the CoRE innovation centre will start next year. He said: “My first impression is that CoRE is an exceptionally outstanding project, which has obviously been given a great deal of thought, by the planners, council officers, the universities and energy companies who’ve collaborated to create this masterplan.

“Having grown up in a mining area its great to see how an area which powered the country with fossil fuels and eventually suffered great loss of habitat and jobs is being re-empowered.

“With this project the area can once again lead the way in producing energy, only this time it’s green energy, boosting the local economy, enhancing the landscape and improving the quality of life for local people.

“I’m delighted that it seems to be on course to be an exemplar for other local authorities, all of Scotland, other countries and indeed the world.

“I’m absolutely convinced it will be successful and benefit not just this area but the world in general.”

Find out more:

Visit our CoRE webpages
Visit Ayrshire Growth Deal website
Subscribe to regular email bulletins about CoRE with our StayConnected system (you can unsubscribe at any time)

View this article on East Ayrshire Councils website

Date added: Friday August 26th 2022
MP throws weight behind campaign to stop people getting scammed
MP throws weight behind campaign to stop people getting scammed

MP Allan Dorans has urged residents in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock to be on their guard against cost-of-living scams as Scotlands ScamWatch Fortnight gets underway.

This years Read Between the Li(n)es campaign highlights the importance of remaining vigilant - with fraudsters using emails, texts and social media to prey on people of all ages.

Advice Direct Scotland, which runs the national consumer advice service consumeradvice.scot on behalf of the Scottish Government, continues to see new tactics deployed as criminals try to manipulate struggling households.

Any residents in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock who wants to report a scam should fill in the ScamWatch Quick Reporting Tool at www.scamwatch.scot, which collects intelligence to share with various authorities.

With energy bills set to soar, recent reported scams include fake discounts on prepayment meters and bogus offers of energy or HMRC rebates, which leave potential victims even more disadvantaged.

Allan Dorans, MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock is throwing his support behind the campaign, urging his constituents to be aware about their daily activities.

He said: “This is such an important campaign, urging people to read between the lines to what is actually being said by scammers when they contact you unexpectedly.

"I would really encourage constituents to read through the really helpful advice provided by Consumer Advice.”

Colin Mathieson, spokesperson for Advice Direct Scotland, added: “With scammers using a mixture of methods to target Scots consumers, it has never been more important for us to be aware of how to avoid them.

“We have seen scammers adapt their tactics in line with major world events, including the Covid-19 pandemic and crisis in Ukraine.

“New scams including fake energy rebates are being recorded as scammers try to exploit the challenging circumstances facing many families across Scotland.

“Throughout the campaign, we are highlighting the importance of remaining vigilant and pausing before interacting with emails, text messages or social media adverts.

“The most effective way to stop scammers in their tracks is to report a scam to scamwatch.scot when you see one."

You can get more advice and information at www.consumeradvice.scot

View this article on The Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Monday August 22nd 2022
July Newsletter 2022
July Newsletter 2022

You can now download my newsletter for the month of July below:

Download the July 2022 Newsletter

If you would prefer an email copy each month, please email allan.dorans.mp@parliament.uk with YES in the subject heading to subscribe.

Date added: Wednesday August 3rd 2022
Allan Dorans MP: Pleased to support neonatal bill
Allan Dorans MP: Pleased to support neonatal bill

Parliament has now adjourned for the Summer recess, and I am looking forward to continuing to visit local organisations and attending public and community events within the constituency.

Just before the breakup of Parliament, I was delighted to speak in the debate in favour of the Neonatal Care (Leave and Pay) Bill in the House of Commons.

When a baby is born prematurely or with significant health issues, they often require an extended stay in a neonatal baby unit in hospital. Under current legislation, parents do not receive paid leave in these circumstances, despite the emotional distress this causes.

Thats why I was pleased to lend my support for this Bill, which would allow parents to receive paid leave in such circumstances. The Bill passed successfully to the next stage of the parliamentary process and will hopefully become law.

Summer is always a particularly busy period for me, so I was pleased to get out in both Ayr and Cumnock over July.

In Cumnock I was pleased to meet with Depute Service Lead, Julie Neil and team, from Cumnock Job Centre Plus for an insightful discussion about the work their team do on a daily basis. Their Job Centre Plus team work incredibly hard to support those most in need, and often do not get the credit they rightly deserve. My sincere thanks to them for the work they do to help constituents.

They also work with the local council to offer lots of assistance and support to help get people into work, through their KickStart scheme and Youth Hubs. You can find more about this on their Twitter page: @JCPinSWScot.

More recently in Ayr, at the invitation of the Ayr Burns Club, I attended a church service at the Auld Kirk to remember Rabbie Burns life and work and mark the anniversary of his death over two hundred years ago. It was a privilege to be asked to make a speech at the service, where I highlighted the great work of Burns Clubs across the globe in keeping his memory alive for future generations to learn and enjoy.

Many people will have been touched and saddened by the recent death of Dame Deborah James (bowelbabe) after being diagnosed with terminal bowel cancer. Between the time Deborah was diagnosed and her death, she devoted much of her life to raising awareness and removing the stigma of bowel cancer, and in the process raised several millions of pounds for Bowel Cancer UK.

On a similar note, I am pleased to promote the Ayr Boswell FC Charity Day, which is a festival of football being held on Sunday, July 31 between 9am – 5pm at the New Pebble Park, Annbank. The festival includes the annual John Rowan Cup Final. John was a youth coach at Ayr Boswell who also sadly died of bowel cancer at the age of just 50. This promises to be a wonderful feast of football and any monies raised will be donated to local charities including Ayrshire Cancer Support.

Everyone over 50 in Scotland has the opportunity to be screened for bowel cancer every two years. I would strongly encourage everyone to take the test, as early detection of bowel cancer massively increases the chance of successful treatment.

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Friday July 29th 2022
Allan Dorans: Ayrs MP backs campaign on anti-social behaviour
Allan Dorans: Ayrs MP backs campaign on anti-social behaviour

AYR MP Allan Dorans has joined a national campaign to tackle anti-social behaviour (ASB) and keep people in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock safe.

Running from July 18 to 22, ASB Awareness Week – Making Communities Safer aims to encourage communities to take a stand against ASB and highlight the actions that can be taken by those experiencing it.

Anti-social behaviour can include: noise, shouting, swearing, fighting, intimidation, harassment, verbal abuse, bullying, abusive behaviour, dumping rubbish and vandalism.

Organised by Resolve, the UKs leading ASB and community safety organisation, the week features a series of events all across the UK involving councils, police forces, housing associations, charities, community groups and sports clubs.

Recent research commissioned by Resolve and carried out by YouGov found that more than half of people in the UK – 56 per cent to be exact – believe that ‘more needs to be done’ to tackle ASB in their community.

However, after they witnessed or experienced ASB, a similar proportion of the public – 57 per cent – said that they did not report the incident to anyone.

Incidents can be reported to the anti-social behaviour team at South Ayrshire Council on my.south-ayrshire.gov.uk or by calling 0300 123 0900.

People should contact the police if they feel that they are at immediate risk or in danger.

Mr Dorans said: “I am pleased to offer my support to ASB Awareness Week 2022, and I am committed to ensuring that everyone has the right to feel safe in their home and community.

“I am aware from correspondence with constituents that ASB is an area of public concern that needs to be addressed on both a local and national level.”

Rebecca Bryant OBE, chief executive of resolve added: “ASB is not low-level crime. It can have a long-lasting impact on the lives of victims and communities and can be a precursor to more serious crime.

“It is important that the challenge of ASB continues to be given the priority it needs so that people everywhere feel safe in their homes and communities.

“We are delighted that Allan is supporting this hugely important campaign.

“It is vital to develop partnership approaches across communities to deal with the growing challenges around ASB.”

The Scottish Government has reminded residents to call 999 if you or someone else is in immediate danger.

Report antisocial behaviour to the police by calling 101 or by visiting your local police station.

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Monday July 18th 2022
Allan Dorans urges speed-up of new treatments for Dementia
Allan Dorans urges speed-up of new treatments for Dementia

AYR Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans is backing Alzheimers Research UKs call for a new Dementia Medicines Taskforce to radically speed up the development and roll-out of new treatments for people with dementia.

It is estimated that around 1,467 people have dementia in the constituency. By 2030, dementia will be the most expensive health condition of the UKs top causes of death, costing £30 billion a year.

A Dementia Medicines Taskforce would bring together representatives from industry, the NHS, charities and researchers, with a single focus on fast-tracking the development and delivery of new medicines for diseases like Alzheimers.

With a bold and co-ordinated approach, the Taskforce would build on vital research and scientific breakthroughs to improve diagnosis as well as enhance late-stage clinical trials in the UK and enable regulators to rapidly assess new medicines.

Mr Dorans said: “I fully support Alzheimers Research UKs inspiring idea for a Dementia Medicines Taskforce. Its vital we continue to build on the progress made in dementia research and ensure that people with dementia receive new treatments as soon as they become available.

“A Dementia Medicines Taskforce would capitalise on our world-leading life sciences sector, and help make a huge difference to the lives of people affected by dementia.

“I have written to Lord Kamall urging him to ensure this policy is a key part of the governments forthcoming 10-year dementia strategy.”

David Thomas, Head of Policy, at Alzheimers Research UK, said: “Were delighted to have the support of Allan Dorans on such an important issue.

“People with dementia need MPs like Allan who will champion research.”

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Friday July 8th 2022
June Newsletter 2022
June Newsletter 2022

You can now download my newsletter for the month of June below:

Download the June 2022 Newsletter

If you would prefer an email copy each month, please email allan.dorans.mp@parliament.uk with YES in the subject heading to subscribe.

Date added: Tuesday July 5th 2022
Headlines on soaring mental illness among police are irresponsible
Headlines on soaring mental illness among police are irresponsible

LAST week, one Scottish newspaper ran the headline “Morale among Police Scotland rank and file at rock bottom amid soaring mental health absences”.

Police Professional, the usually more accurate UK law enforcement journal used the same “mental health” label for absences actually recorded by Police Scotland as due to “psychological disorder and stress-related absence”.

Notably, but not mentioned in media reports, the 22% increase over five years conceals the fact that, based on Police Scotlands published figures, such absences had actually fallen by 15% between 2019/20 and 2020/21.

Year-on-year fluctuation is to be expected and simply adding up the data over enough years to get a big headline number is simply poor journalism.

However, as I suggest above, there is a more serious misrepresentation of reality in crudely conflating stress and mental health illness.

First, we do not know what percentage of the absences are due to formally diagnosed mental health illness.

While I am by no means underestimating the costs of stress and recognise that unrelieved high stress levels can lead to more serious mental health illness, they are not the same thing.

Let me quote the mental health charity Mind: “Stress is not normally considered a mental health problem. But it is connected to our mental health in several ways.”

As a former police officer, I understand the presence of stress in the job and the damaging effects it can have.

Steps must be taken to deal with it but to present the information in a way that suggests mental health illnesses are “soaring” among police officers is to irresponsibly increase anxiety among their colleagues and the wider public who depend upon them.

Allan Dorans is the SNP MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock and a former detective inspector with the Metropolitan Police

View this article on The Nationals website

Date added: Tuesday June 14th 2022
May Newsletter 2022
May Newsletter 2022

You can now download my newsletter for the month of May below:

Download the May 2022 Newsletter

If you would prefer an email copy each month, please email allan.dorans.mp@parliament.uk with YES in the subject heading to subscribe.

Date added: Wednesday June 1st 2022
Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP vows to raise bowel cancer awareness
Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP vows to raise bowel cancer awareness

Allan Dorans, MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock says he is committing his support to Bowel Cancer Awareness Month this year.

Mr Dorans is working with Bowel Cancer UK to improve early diagnosis and access to best treatment and care both in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock and nationally.

New findings released by Bowel Cancer UK for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month have revealed that more than four in ten (45 per cent) people in the UK cannot name a single bowel cancer symptom.

Early diagnosis is essential to improving bowel cancer outcomes and being able to recognise the symptoms and speaking to your GP when you feel something isnt right, could save your life.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK with nearly 43,000 people diagnosed every year. That means every 15 minutes someone is diagnosed with the disease.

Sadly, more than 16,500 people die from the disease each year, making it the UKs second biggest cancer killer but it shouldnt be as its treatable and curable especially if diagnosed early.

The symptoms of bowel cancer can include; Bleeding from your bottom and/or blood in faeces; A persistent and unexplained change in bowel habit; Unexplained weight loss; Extreme tiredness for no obvious reason; A pain or lump in your tummy.

Dr Lisa Wilde, Director of Research and External Affairs at Bowel Cancer UK, comments: “Bowel cancer remains the UKs second biggest cancer killer, and its shocking that people arent aware of the symptoms to look out for.

“Were delighted to have the support of Allan, who will help raise awareness of bowel cancer in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock.

“If you notice any signs of bowel cancer, or if things just dont feel right for you, please visit your GP.”

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Thursday May 12th 2022
April Newsletter 2022
April Newsletter 2022

You can now download my newsletter for the month of April below:

Download the April 2022 Newsletter

If you would prefer an email copy each month, please email allan.dorans.mp@parliament.uk with YES in the subject heading to subscribe.

Date added: Friday April 29th 2022
March Newsletter 2022
March Newsletter 2022

You can now download my newsletter for the month of March, to keep you updated with my work as your elected representative.

Download the March 2022 Newsletter

If you would like to receive an email copy of my newsletter each month, please email: allan.dorans.mp@parliament.uk including your full name and address, with YES in the email subject heading.

Date added: Tuesday April 5th 2022
FASD affects 12,000 individuals in Ayrshire and Arran
FASD affects 12,000 individuals in Ayrshire and Arran

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans has recently met with the founders of Oshays to discuss the vital work they are doing to bring attention to Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).

FASD is a lifelong condition that results from a baby being exposed to alcohol before birth. This exposure to alcohol affects how the babys brain and body can develop, which can lead to physical, mental, behavioural, and learning disabilities.

According to the Ayrshire and Arran NHS health board, research shows that its likely that more than 12,000 individuals in Ayrshire and Arran are affected by FASD.

Mr Dorans said: “I was delighted to recently meet with Maryelen and Paula Mcphail, Oshays founders, to discuss the outstanding work they are doing to bring attention to FASD. They provide extensive support to families living with FASD and have created a real sense of community.”

The groups founders, Maryelen and Paula, added: “We are passionate about helping families and professionals work with individuals with brain-based disabilities, by providing a library of resources and a sense of community so they are empowered in supporting these individuals and advocating on their behalf.”

“We are offering Sensory Classes, Fussy Eater Classes, Messy Play Classes, Makaton Classes and many more to babies, toddlers and school age kids, with FASD and other brain-based conditions.”

“I (Maryelen) am a parent of six children, three have FASD, I am also a foster carer and have fostered over 50 kids in my time. I am pretty sure a lot of my kids may have had FASD. I bring over 24 years experience. Paula is my daughter who has FASD, she brings her knowledge and strengths to tell how she has lived with FASD.”

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Friday April 1st 2022
Legendary Chuckle Brother praises Marie Curies Great Daffodil Appeal as Ayrshire MP lends support to cause
Legendary Chuckle Brother praises Marie Curies Great Daffodil Appeal as Ayrshire MP lends support to cause

An Ayrshire MP has teamed up with a legendary comedian and entertainer in a bid to support an end of life charity’s fundraising drive.

Allan Dorans, MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, met with Paul Chuckle – best known for being one-half of comedy duo The Chuckle Brothers – to pledge their support for Marie Curies Great Daffodil Appeal.

The pair are encouraging residents across the region to donate to the appeal and wear one of the charitys daffodil pins to help fund vital care and support for people living with a terminal illness, and their families.

Donations also support the charitys Information and Support line, which provides a listening ear to anyone dealing with any aspect of grief and bereavement.

The campaign, held every March, was forced to axe its public collections in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

But this year, fundraising events and collections are back, with the charity urging new and existing supporters to come forward to show their support.

Allan Dorans MP said: “From the expert care given by Marie Curie Nurses, through to the reassuring voices on the support line – its services have never been more in need.

“But they can only continue to reach those in urgent need of help with the generosity of the public. That is why I am supporting the Great Daffodil Appeal this March.”

Paul Chuckle, who has been a supporter of Marie Curie since 2015, said: “I’m proud to be part of the Great Daffodil Appeal, helping ensure Marie Curie can raise as much awareness and money as possible so they can be there for people in their final days, weeks, months.

“The charity does fantastic work. Its dedicated team of nurses, doctors and support staff help make the end of life experience the best it can possibly be for everyone.

“So, I urge you to don a daffodil pin this March and unite with Marie Curie in our wish for a better end of life care for all.”

Ruth Driscoll, head of policy and public affairs at Marie Curie, added: “Were very grateful for the support of Allan and Paul Chuckle in helping us to raise awareness of our much-loved Great Daffodil Appeal.

“The pandemic isnt over and the additional costs of operating to ensure we keep our beneficiaries and staff safe continues which is why the Great Daffodil Appeal is so important.”

The annual National Day of Reflection will take place on March 23, with the charity encouraging everyone to wear a daffodil pin and take a moment to show their support for the millions of people bereaved during the pandemic.

View this article on The Daily Records website

Date added: Monday March 14th 2022
Calls to end barbaric trophy hunting imports as MP backs campaign
Calls to end barbaric trophy hunting imports as MP backs campaign

Allan Dorans MPs bid to ban imports of hunting trophies has won the backing of some of Britains best-loved public figures.

An Ayrshire MP has joined the campaign to see a ban on ‘barbaric’ trophy hunting imports.

Allan Dorans, MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, has shown his support to prohibit goods brought into the UK from British trophy hunters who kill endangered animals — including lions, elephants and rhinos — abroad for fun.

The law currently allows British hunters to bring their trophies of animals heads and body parts back into the country to display in their homes.

A UK-wide public opinion poll in March last year showed that almost 9 in 10 voters support a ban.

Now, Mr Dorans is adding his voice to the list of campaigners and has received backing from popular public figures including actress and presenter Dame Joanna Lumley and Downton Abbey star Peter Egan, who he met with last week.

Allan Dorans MP said: “It was a pleasure to show my support for the campaign to ban trophy hunting imports, and meet with actor Peter Egan, a lifelong supporter of animal rights and welfare.

“Since the UK Government announced its pledge to ban trophies in the 2019 Queens Speech, hundreds of animals have been killed by British trophy hunters.

“It is blatantly clear that the majority of voters back this ban, so it is high time we bring this barbaric trade to an end.”

Joanna Lumley said Mr Dorans is representing “the 9 in 10 voters who want to see an end to this barbaric, cruel industry”.

She said: “It should have been abolished long ago. What sort of world do we live in where endangered animals can be killed for thrills by British trophy hunters?

“It is the height of cowardice. Allan Dorans MP has my full support for this campaign.”

Peter Egan said he applauded Mr Dorans "courageous campaign".

He said: “The American gun lobby is fighting efforts to ban this evil ‘sport’ because it says hunters rights should be protected. But what about the innocent, defenceless animals that are killed by British trophy hunters every year just for kicks?

“Allan Dorans MP is absolutely right to stand up to the industry lobbyists and to speak up for voiceless animals.”

Eduardo Goncalves, of the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting, added: “Many people are shocked to learn trophy hunting still goes on. They are even more shocked to learn that British people are involved and that it’s not just Americans who shoot lions for so-called ‘sport’, selfies and souvenirs.

“Allan Dorans MP is absolutely right to be reflecting local people’s views on this issue. Trophy hunting is opposed by the vast majority of local constituents.”

View this article on The Daily Records website

Date added: Tuesday March 8th 2022
South Ayrshire Council urged to sign Pregnancy Loss Pledge to support employees
South Ayrshire Council urged to sign Pregnancy Loss Pledge to support employees

The pledge ensures staff going through what can be a very difficult or traumatic time get the support and time off they need.

South Ayrshire Council are being urged to improve support for staff experiencing pregnancy loss by signing the Miscarriage Association’s Pregnancy Loss Pledge.

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans is calling on council bosses to commit to signing the pledge to ensure employees are supported through tough, and often traumatic, times following a miscarriage.

The pledge ensures staff feel able to take the time off they need and encourages a supportive work environment where people feel able to discuss and disclose pregnancy loss.

Several companies across the UK have put their name to the pledge including the Co-op, ASOS, TSB and Fife Council – the only local authority in the UK to make the pledge.

Lanark and Hamilton East MP Angela Crawley has been campaigning to have paid miscarriage leave introduced at Westminster for parents who experience miscarriage before 24 weeks.

And last week she wrote to every local authority in Scotland who hasnt signed up to encourage them to take the Pregnancy Loss Pledge.

Allan Dorans MP is now pushing for South Ayrshire Council to follow in the footsteps of Fife Council.

“Employers which sign up commit to creating an environment where people are able to grieve their loss before being supported back to work in a way which is both responsive to their needs and shows flexibility wherever possible.

“I would encourage South Ayrshire Council to take the Pregnancy Loss Pledge to ensure that any of their employees are supported through what can be an incredibly tough time both mentally and physically.”

Angela Crawley added: “By signing up and following the example set by Fife Council, South Ayrshire Council will enhance their current policies for staff who experience bereavement.

“The more employers who commit to the Pregnancy Loss Pledge, the quicker we can finally end the stigma associated with miscarriage and ensure parents are properly supported.”

A South Ayrshire Council spokesperson said: “We recently received information about the Pregnancy Loss Pledge and it is currently being considered.”

View this article on The Daily Records website

Date added: Tuesday March 8th 2022
Cumnock MP: Allan Dorans at childrens mental health event
Cumnock MP: Allan Dorans at childrens mental health event

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans attended a drop-in event in the Houses of Parliament to mark Childrens Mental Health Week 2022.

The event was organized by Place2Be, a charity providing mental health support in schools across the UK.

Place2Be launched the first ever Childrens Mental Health Week in 2015 to shine a spotlight on the importance of children and young peoples mental health.

2022 marks the eighth year of the awareness week and this years theme, Growing Together, explores the importance of emotional growth and finding ways to help each other grow.

Mr Dorans joined over 40 Members of Parliament who met with Place2Be representatives and headteachers in the Jubilee Room at the Palace of Westminster to find out more the charitys work promoting wellbeing in schools.

Mr Dorans said afterwards: “I was delighted to receive a briefing on the work of Place2B.

“They are a Childrens Mental Health Charity who work with pupils, families and staff in Schools in a whole school approach to children’s mental wellbeing.

“They have my full support and I have agreed to visit these schools to find out more about their invaluable work.”

View this article on The Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Friday March 4th 2022
Ayr’s MP Allan Dorans supports fund to help families with energy costs
Ayr’s MP Allan Dorans supports fund to help families with energy costs

AYR, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans welcomed a new home heating support fund which will help Scots struggling with their energy bills amid a growing cost-of-living crisis.

The £3million Scottish Government scheme, which is administered by national advice service Advice Direct Scotland, is designed to prevent households falling into fuel poverty and help those ‘rationing’ their energy use.

The Home Heating Support Fund is open until March 31 and applications can only be made on behalf of individuals by referral partners through homeheatingadvice.scot.

The MP is in support of the fund as it will help to ease the strain for a number of families.

Mr Dorans said: “As energy prices rise across the country, many Scots will be facing financial hardship.

“That’s why this fund is especially vital to ensure that those who are struggling receive the help they need and don’t have to choose between heating and eating.

“I am encouraging any local residents struggling with their energy bills to seek support from the fund through the energy and/or debt organisation currently providing them with advice. Their expert debt advisers will assess eligibility and apply for funding on the individual’s behalf.

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Wednesday January 26th 2022
Cumnocks MP urges young people to apply for free bus travel card
Cumnocks MP urges young people to apply for free bus travel card

CUMNOCKS MP has welcomed the opening of the application process for free bus travel for the areas young people.

Everyone in Scotland under the age of 22 will be entitled to free bus travel from Monday, January 31 – and young people are being encouraged to apply for a new or replacement National Entitlement Card (NEC), or Young Scot NEC – which they will need to make the most of the scheme.

The roll-out of the initiative is expected to benefit around 930,000 young people across Scotland, with research suggesting 70 per cent of young people were likely to use public transport more often if it were free.

SNP MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, Allan Dorans, has welcomed the opening of the application process for free bus travel for young people, under the age of 22 years old in Scotland.

As of last week, all young people and children aged 5-21 years old in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock can apply for their new or replacement National Entitlement Card (NEC) or Young Scot NEC to access the scheme from 31 January 2022.

The scheme, extending free bus travel to everyone aged 22, builds on the Scottish Government’s commitment to providing free bus travel to all under-19’s in Scotland which started in August 2021.

SNP MP Allan Dorans has welcomed the initiative which is set to benefit around 930,000 young people across Scotland and pointed to research from Transport Scotland indicating that 70% of young people would use public transport more frequently if it was free.

The scheme will be delivered in partnership with Transport Scotland, the Improvement Service, the National Entitlement Card Programme Office (NECPO), Young Scot, local authorities and bus operators.

Commenting, the Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP said: “I am delighted that applications are now open for young people in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, under the age of 22, to apply for free bus travel across the country. This is a hugely significant commitment from the Scottish Government that will benefit hundreds of thousands of young people across the country. Young people in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock are rightly challenging their politicians to take bold actions to create a sustainable future for them and free bus travel is an example of what can be done to rise to this challenge.

“Making bus travel free for under 22s is not only important for helping tackle the climate emergency but it will take pressure off young people’s finances and improve their access to education, leisure, and work.

“Whilst we continue to live through the pandemic, we all recognise that essential travel must be prioritised, so I want to specifically encourage children and young people with essential journeys to make to apply now.

“The SNP Scottish Government is once again making an investment in our young people’s future, supporting them to have the best possible start in life and creating the fairer, greener Scotland that we want to build.”

View this article on The Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Wednesday January 26th 2022
Boris Johnson: Ayrshire politicians call for resignation
Boris Johnson: Ayrshire politicians call for resignation

Several Ayrshire politicians have called on the Prime Minister to resign after he admitted attending a drinks gathering in the garden at Downing Street during lockdown.

Boris Johnson admitted earlier this week that he attended the May 2020 gathering but claimed it was purely a work event.

Today, it has emerged Downing Street held two further parties the night before Prince Philips funeral, at a time when Covid restrictions banned indoor gathering.

The PM was not in attendance at the April 16, 2021, events, but concerns have been raised about a culture of rule breaking.

Allan Dorans, Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock SNP MP, said: “People in Ayr, Carrick, and Cumnock are understandably furious that while they were following the rules, and making huge sacrifices in the fight against COVID, Boris Johnson was breaking them by hosting illegal parties in Downing Street.

"There cannot be one rule for the Tory government and another for the rest of us. The Prime Minister has demonstrated that he is not fit for office.

“If Boris Johnson doesnt have the decency and integrity to resign - his Tory MPs must remove him without further delay."

Scottish Conservative Party politician, and South Scotland MSP, Sharon Dowey added: "As I’ve said before, if there has been any wrong doing on the Prime Minister’s part then he should accept responsibility for that error. Today we have had an admission from the Prime Minister that he was in the wrong, an admission that in my opinion is long overdue.

“Many people have suffered a great deal during this pandemic, that’s why it is so important that the rules are observed by everybody in our society, regardless of their position or political persuasion. We simply cannot have one rule for some and one rule for others; to suggest otherwise would be an insult to the British public."

Leader of the Scottish Conservative Party, Douglas Ross, has called for the Prime Minister to resign on numerous occasions.

This is a feeling that party colleague Sharon Dowey, South Scotland MSP, agrees with.

She added: “I understand that this must have been a difficult call for Douglas to make but in light of the circumstances I believe it is the right decision."

Another South Scotland MSP has also called for Boris Johnson to resign.

Ayr-born Tory Brian Whittle added: “Given the Prime Minister’s admission that he attended this event in the Downing Street gardens, it’s clear to me that he has broken the rules he was asking us all to follow.

"If it came to light that Nicola Sturgeon or any of her Ministers had done something like this I would have no hesitation in calling for their resignation, so it would be wrong of me not to say the same here just because Boris Johnson wears the same colour of party rosette as me.

"This isn’t a question of politicians being held to a higher standard, it’s about them sticking to the same rules as everyone else and ensuring those who work for them do the same.

"Boris Johnson has failed to do that and, perhaps worse, he’s damaged the credibility of his office at a time when the public need to have trust in their government to see them through the pandemic.

"He has admitted he did the wrong thing, now he needs to do the right thing and resign.”

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Date added: Friday January 14th 2022
Cumnock MP: Allan Dorans backs first less survivable cancer day
Cumnock MP: Allan Dorans backs first less survivable cancer day

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans is backing the first Less Survivable Cancers Awareness Day to highlight the critical importance of early diagnosis in improving survival and quality of life for people diagnosed with these cancers.

The Less Survivable Cancers Taskforce (LSCT) represents six less survivable cancers, lung, liver, brain, oesophageal, pancreatic and stomach, with an average five-year survival rate of just 16%. Together, these less survivable cancers make up nearly half of all common cancer deaths in the UK.

Less survivable cancers are difficult to diagnose and most of the general public are unaware of common symptoms. Data released by the LSCT in 2021 showed that awareness of the symptoms of the deadliest cancers is as low as 4% in the UK.

The Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP said: “I am pleased to speak out for people diagnosed with less survivable cancers and support the first Less Survivable Cancers Awareness Day.

“We know that early diagnosis is crucial and so it is vital that we raise awareness of the common symptoms of these cancers.”

Typical symptoms will vary but red flags for less survivable cancers could include any of the following; indigestion, abdominal pain, unexplained weight loss, a loss of appetite, difficulty swallowing, a persistent cough, unexplained tiredness, headaches or nausea. The key message is to seek medical help swiftly if you notice anything is unusual for you.

View this article on The Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Thursday January 13th 2022
VASA’s volunteers deliver the goods on Christmas Day
VASA’s volunteers deliver the goods on Christmas Day

Voluntary Action South Ayrshire took no time off on Christmas Day as they were out delivering parcels to vulnerable people across the area.

The third sector organisation had help from some locals who were also willing to give up part of their Christmas day to provide some cheer to those who need it.

Santa Claus, a.k.a. MP Allan Dorans, was also on hand to provide some support.

They were given a taster of how much their work means to people as one person got in touch to say how much their support had helped their mum.

The individual told VASA: “Once again I am writing to say a massive thank you for your kindness and generosity. My mother received her gift this morning from yourselves.

“It lightens my heart to hear her so uplifted by the kindness of strangers. Your delivery of food etc. may be “just” volunteering to you, but for us it’s the knowledge that mum is getting something to look forward to and restoring her faith in others.

“My mother has had another difficult year due to loneliness and medical issues. It really lifts her spirits to have you showing up with your “fabulous gifts”.

“It’s the one time I don’t mind hearing her in tears. Happy tears have been sadly lacking recently, despite our best efforts. We live abroad and it’s been so awkward trying to “be there” for her. Phones and Facetime are wonderful but actually seeing another kind face in front of you, can’t be beaten.

“Please know that you not only make a difference to the people who receive your food and gifts, you make our day too.

“So a very appreciative thank you from us to all of you.”

Well done to everyone who was out delivering the goods.

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Wednesday January 5th 2022
Ayr MP wants to bring an end to barbaric killing of wild animals
Ayr MP wants to bring an end to barbaric killing of wild animals

AYR’S MP Allan Dorans has called on the UK Government to ban imports of hunting trophies without delay.

The government has released details of a proposed bill to ban trophies but has not said when the bill will come to parliament.

New figures reveal that – despite Covid – British trophy hunters still killed some of the world’s most threatened animals in 2020, including lions, elephants, hippos, giraffes, leopards, bears, and zebras.

Data from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) shows that British hunters shoot on average 200 endangered animals a year. Animals shot recently by British hunters include polar bears, rhinos, wolves and wild cats.

The government says its bill to ban trophies has been delayed due to lack of time.

The Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP said: “It’s time to bring this barbaric trade to an end. A ban on trophy imports is backed by 85 per cent of voters.

“I call on the government to bring this bill to Parliament as quickly as possible. The longer it delays, the more animals are killed for so-called sport, selfies and sick souvenirs.”

Downton Abbey star Peter Egan supported the MP’s call, saying: “We’ve just had the COP summit in Glasgow where politicians discussed how to save wildlife such as polar bears that could go extinct from climate change. Yet trophy hunters are still allowed to shoot polar bears and bring their bodies back to Britain. It’s utter insanity.

“This Christmas, the government can give defenceless animals the gift of life by either publishing its bill or adopting John Spellar MP’s private members bill instead. There is no justification for delaying any further.”

Eduardo Goncalves, founder of the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting, added: “It has been two years since the ban was promised in the 2019 Queen’s Speech. Another 300 animals at risk of extinction have been killed by British trophy hunters since then.

“The government should be moving as swiftly as possible to stop this terrible trade.

“The government recently adopted Liam Fox MP’s bill on providing lifelong care for people with Down’s Syndrome, in order to bring the law into effect. It should do the same with John Spellar MP’s bill to ban trophies.

“Delaying action costs lives of some of the world’s most threatened animals.”

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Friday December 24th 2021
Cumnock politicians support firms on Small Business Saturday
Cumnock politicians support firms on Small Business Saturday

Cumnock’s politicians indulged in a spot of retail therapy this week to mark Small Business Saturday.

Elena Whitham MSP popped into Timbermills in the town and was shown around by the team. She said: “Small local businesses are vital to our communities and it was great to be out with councillor Jim McMahon in Cumnock yesterday speaking with shop owners including Timbermills where I found Swedish torches for camping.”

Allan Dorans also got involved, adding: “Small businesses need our help like never before.”

View this article on The Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Friday December 17th 2021
Cumnocks MP calls for miscarriage leave
Cumnocks MP calls for miscarriage leave

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans has added his support to the campaign to introduce paid leave for families who experience a miscarriage before 24 weeks.

One in four pregnancies end in miscarriage, however, under current legislation, workers are only entitled to paid bereavement leave following a stillbirth after 24 weeks of pregnancy.

Next month, a private members’ bill which would see three days of paid leave for parents who experience a miscarriage before 24 weeks will receive its second reading in the House of Commons.

MP Mr Dorans, right, said this week: “I know many parents in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock have experienced miscarriage and too many of them have to rely on their employer’s good will or take sick leave when it happens.”

View this article on The Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Friday December 3rd 2021
Allan Dorans calls on Rishi Sunak to postpone end of furlough
Allan Dorans calls on Rishi Sunak to postpone end of furlough

Analysis shows 1,900 jobs in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock are at risk from plans to terminate the furlough scheme at the end of this month.

HMRC data reveals that 116,500 jobs remain furloughed in Scotland at the last count.

Of those, 1,900 jobs remain furloughed in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock.

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans is calling on the chancellor to postpone the end of the scheme.

“It is vital that the Chancellor finally listens to SNP calls to extend the furlough scheme and deliver financial support for hard hit businesses and sectors. There is now a very real danger that Tory complacency on jobs could result in rising redundancies in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock and across the UK.”

With thousands of Scottish jobs under threat from Tory cuts, including 1,900 at risk in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, The MP said last week:

“I am urging Rishi Sunak to ensure the UK government does not withdraw support for jobs and businesses abruptly and prematurely.

“This is especially important, given the risks of Covid this winter and the fragile state of the UK economy.”

View this article on The Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Thursday September 30th 2021
Devastating Universal Credit cut to impose economic hardship on tens of thousands of Ayrshire residents
Devastating Universal Credit cut to impose economic hardship on tens of thousands of Ayrshire residents

More than 20,000 Ayrshire residents will see their incomes slashed by £1,040 per year, by October, MPs have warned.

Allan Dorans MP has urged the UK government to perform a U-turn on the “devastating” Tory cuts to Universal Credit.

According to the Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP, new analysis shows 10,248 people in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock could see their incomes slashed by £1040 per year, from as early as next month.

And around 10,833 Kilmarnock and Loudoun residents are also set to be hit by the changes, according to the areas MP Alan Brown.

Analysis obtained from the House of Commons Library, using the latest Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) data, has revealed that almost half a million (477,996) people in Scotland could be hit by the cut – at a total cost to Scottish families of around £430million a year.

Of those, 10,248 live in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock – representing 18.2 per cent of the constituency adult population aged 16 to 65. While 17.4 per cent of Kilmarnock and Loudouns population are facing tough cuts.

Mr Dorans has appealed to the UK Government to stop in its tracks over what he warns will be “damaging cuts” to household incomes.

He said “It is crucial that the UK government scraps the devastating Tory Universal Credit cuts, which could slash the incomes of almost half a million Scottish families by £1040 from October.”

The overwhelming majority of Scottish MPs voted in the House of Commons to stop the Universal Credit cuts but the UK Government plan to impose them.

The SNP has urged the UK government to think again in light of the energy bills crisis- and make the £20 a week uplift permanent and extend it to legacy benefits.

Mr Dorans continued “At a time when energy bills and the cost of living are soaring, it would be unthinkable for the Tory government to go ahead with cuts that would decimate the incomes of around 10,248 local families in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock.

“The UK is already suffering from a growing Tory poverty crisis, with the worst levels of poverty and inequality of any country in north west Europe- and the highest levels of in-work poverty this century as a direct result of Tory cuts, tax hikes and the cost of Brexit.

“I am urging the Chancellor (Rishi Sunak) to U-turn on these Tory cuts, and instead make the £20 Universal Credit uplift permanent and extend it to legacy benefits - as part of a wider package of measures to protect household incomes.”

He added “I will continue to press the UK government to reverse these damaging cuts but ultimately it is clear the only way to keep Scotland safe from Tory cuts is to become an independent country, with the full powers needed to build a strong, fair and equal recovery.”

View this article on The Daily Records website

Date added: Tuesday September 28th 2021
Steps the SNP is taking to make justice work for everyone

Allan Dorans is a former Detective Inspector with the Metropolitan Police, an Area Manager with the Community Safety Charity Safeguarding Communities Reducing Offending (SACRO), currently the MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock and SNP spokesperson for Policing.

The SNP-led government in Scotland has taken major steps in developing a more progressive benefits and taxation system and, of course, in managing the pandemic with significantly lower loss of life than in England or Wales. These have, understandably, earned much media attention. However, improvements to Criminal Justice have been equally central to the ambitions of the SNP.

While the 10-13th September National Conference’s key policy themes were climate change, independence and the 2022 council elections, the Criminal Justice Committee has held round table evidence sessions on justice and policing priorities and on the impact of Covid 19 on the justice sector. With regard to the latter, the policing budget will be increased by £75.5 million to over £1.3 billion to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on police finances.

Support for the victims of crime will be strengthened with the appointment of a Victims’ Commissioner and a new fund to support victims’ organisations. There will be a Bail and Release from Custody Bill to improve how decisions on bail are reached and better support release from custody. Later in September, there will be sessions on the priorities for domestic abuse, gendered violence, on sexual offences and on reform of legal aid.

Particularly pleasing to those of us on the left and with long memories, there will be a bill to introduce a pardons scheme for miners convicted of certain offences relating to the strike by the National Union of Miners in 1984-85. Labour MP, Ian Lavery, who represents Wansbeck in Northumberland, has called for the UK Government to quash convictions in England but the Home Office said it had “no plans” to do so.

However, it is in the area of hate crime that Scotland’s justice system is proving to be most radical and progressive, and which will be most debated within the conference for a. The Hate Crime and Public Order bill passed by a vote of 82 for, 32 against and 4 abstentions, on the 23rd April this year, has prompted much debate. While there were already laws protecting people from hate crimes on the basis of disability, race, religion, sexual orientation and transgender identity, the bill updates these and brings them together in one. It also adds hate crime based on a person’s age to the list of protected groups.

Much of the updating centred on widely accepted perceptions of inadequacy in the extent to which the existing laws fully protected individuals from the potentially extremely damaging hate speech crimes which seem to be currently increasing more than other more physical forms.

This proved difficult with critics arguing that if implemented strictly it might deny freedom of speech to, for example, comedians, writers and artists. The wording was then changed to ensure that only those who can be proven to have intended to stir up hatred are prosecuted. Nevertheless, the bill still sends a strong message to all involved, that offences motivated by prejudice will be treated more seriously and will not be tolerated.

Within this, the Bill’s intent to protect one particular group has stirred the most debate. The rights of the Trans community have been characterised as extreme or divisive, potentially undermining hard-won women’s rights and risking the well-being of children. There is little basis for these views and the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, a lifelong feminist, has resisted considerable political pressure and a campaign of hateful online abuse to stand firm on the need to protect this group as firmly as we have previously done for women, for the LGBT community, for ethnic and for religious groups.

Her words in January 2021, remain clear and inspiring: “Trans people have as much right as any of us to be safe, secure and valued for who they are. Transphobia is wrong and we must treat it with the zero tolerance we treat racism or homophobia. Those are the principles I want to characterise the SNP and the country that I am privileged to lead.”

Finally, In the wake of the Sarah Everard murder, in March 2021, figures from across the political spectrum started to put forward proposals of how to tackle the ongoing problem of widespread violence against women. Making misogyny – prejudice against women – a hate crime emerged as the most popular solution. Debate within the conference groups and beyond will note that an amendment that would have included women as a protected group in the Hate Crime Bill was defeated in April this year but that the Scottish government has instead set up a working group to look at whether misogynistic abuse should be a separate crime. The group will report in February 2022.

View this article on Left Foot Forwards website

Date added: Monday September 20th 2021
Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans visits event
Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans visits event

One of the things that people have clung onto throughout the pandemic has been the chance to come together as a community once again.

And it was this happy moment that greeted Girvan folk recently.

The Communities Back Together event, organised by Voluntary Action South Ayrshire (VASA),has been visiting a number of South Ayrshire communities to ‘showcase all the good work being done by local charities and community groups’.

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans praised the efforts of the group after visiting the Girvan event.

He said: “I was delighted to take part and support the Voluntary Action South Ayrshire initiative in Girvan, to bring communities back together by highlighting the number of local organisations and services available within the community and providing information on volunteering opportunities to support them.

“It was a pleasure to talk with representatives of the organisations and groups.

“Their commitment and enthusiasm for their respective projects was clearly evident, inspirational and a reminder of the great work that goes on within our communities.

Communities Back Together events have also taken place in Maybole, Prestwick, Troon, and Ayr.

The groups involved in the Girvan event were South Ayrshire Council Health and Social Care Partnership (Fostering Team), Equal Futures Project, SAC Partnership Engagement, SAC Locality Planning Partnership, Circles Advocacy, Carrick Sport, Girvan Youth Trust, SAC period poverty White Bag project, SAC Health and Fitness and South Ayrshire helpline (VASA).

View this article on the Ayr Advertiser website

Date added: Tuesday September 14th 2021
South Ayrshire young people take part in outdoor employment fair
South Ayrshire young people take part in outdoor employment fair

Young people from across South Ayrshire took advantage of the summer weather at a ‘unique and innovative’ outdoor employment fair.

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans was full of praise for the event, organised by the Department for Work and Pensions, last week.

“I was pleased to be able to take part in the Kickstart in the Park Event held at Dam Park in Ayr,” said Mr Dorans.

“The event organised by the Department of Work and Pensions brought together over 30 employers from all over Ayrshire with Kickstart Vacancies, and was attended by well over 100 young people seeking a Kickstart placement.

Among the groups involved were East Ayrshire Carers Centre, who Mr Dorans said ‘do an absolutely fantastic job of looking after our young carers’, and DWP staff from across Ayrshire who organised what he described as a ‘unique and innovative event’.

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to create new jobs for 16 to 24 year olds on Universal Credit who are at risk of long term unemployment.

Employers of all sizes can apply for funding which covers:

100% of the National Minimum Wage (or the National Living Wage depending on the age of the participant) for 25 hours per week for a total of 6 months, associated employer National Insurance contributions and minimum automatic enrolment pension contributions.

A £1,500 grant per job is available for setup costs and supporting the young person to develop their employability skills.

If you’re an employer looking to create jobs for young people, you can apply for funding as part of the Kickstart Scheme.

For further information please visit www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-a-kickstart-scheme-grant.

View this article on the Ayr Advertiser website

Date added: Thursday September 2nd 2021
Award-winning site manager welcomes MP visit to Ayrshire development
Award-winning site manager welcomes MP visit to Ayrshire development

Family housebuilders Mactaggart & Mickel welcomed MP Allan Dorans to its Greenan Views development in Ayrshire last week as he congratulated site manager Stuart Gillespie on his recognition from the National House Building Council (NHBC).

Ayrshire-based Stuart was praised after he added a further accolade to his illustrious track record when he scooped a runner-up prize in the NHBC’s highly-regarded Pride in the Job Supreme Awards.

The honour, in connection with his work at Mactaggart & Mickel’s Greenan Views development in Doonfoot, follows four UK Supreme wins and five UK Supreme runner-up awards, including in the 2020 awards, as well as 11 NHBC Scottish regional awards for Stuart.

Greenan Views, Doonfoot is in Mr Doran’s constituency of Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock.

He said: “Stewart is a real credit to Mactaggart & Mickel, demonstrating an exceptional history of outstanding performance throughout his career with the business.

“It’s been a pleasure to meet with him and the rest of the team at the development, getting an insight into the construction process and a more in depth understanding of the role Mactaggart & Mickel plays in the community.”

Stuart said: “I’m always very proud to welcome people to Greenan Views. The whole team here really has worked together to overcome a really challenging 18 months while ensuring we continue to build homes of the highest quality.

“The accolade really is recognition of a joint effort from everyone at Mactaggart & Mickel and so I was thrilled with the opportunity to speak with Mr Dorans to convey the superb efforts of the entire site.

“We are passionate about the homes we build and achieving exceptional standards.”

New home warranty and insurance provider NHBC launched the first Pride in the Job competition in 1980 to celebrate the UK’s best performing site managers building homes and have become the most highly-regarded competition in the industry.

The awards play a pivotal role in NHBC’s drive to give consumers confidence in the quality of new-build homes and in 2020 Stuart was runner-up in the medium builder company category for site managers employed by a company or group that builds between 51 and 1,000 new homes with NHBC warranty cover each year.

Peter Shepherd, director, Mactaggart & Mickel, said: “Stuart’s achievements are testament to the high standards he upholds and his inspirational leadership. We’re incredibly proud of him and I am sure Mr Dornan could see the passion he has for quality and delivering exceptional work.”

View this article on Scottish Construction Nows website

Date added: Tuesday August 17th 2021
Cumnock MP commits to making office accessible to disabled people
Cumnock MP commits to making office accessible to disabled people

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans has officially been registered as a Disability Confident Committed Employer after attending a workshop on June 9 hosted by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the All-Party Disability Group (APPG).

By doing so, the MP has signalled his commitment to making his offices both in parliament and in Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock accessible and welcoming to disabled people and to ensuring that no barriers stand in the way of potential.

This workshop was attended by over 100 parliamentarians and featured addresses from the Minister for Disability Justin Tomlinson MP and the Chair of the All-Party Disability Group Dr Lisa Cameron MP.

It was organised by the Disability APPG after research from Leonard Cheshire found that 26 per cent of all working disabled people have been unable to return to work since the early days of the pandemic with 71 per cent of those with a disability who were employed in March 2020 reporting being negatively impacted by a loss of income, furlough or unemployment as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Allan Dorans MP said: “I was delighted to attend this workshop and to now be registered as a Disability Confident Committed Employer. In the run up to Learning Disability Week 2021 (June 14-20 ) it is especially vital that we do everything we can to support those with a disability into employment to ensure that they get the employment opportunities they deserve.

“Now more than ever it is important that we support disabled people to ensure that they are at the heart of the economic recovery out of the coronavirus pandemic.

“I hope that my registering as a Disability Confident Employer shows my commitment to achieving this goal and also making Westminster more inclusive.”

View this article on the Cumnock Chronicles website


Date added: Monday June 21st 2021
Cumnock MP praises proposals for Eco-Therapy Wellness Park
Cumnock MP praises proposals for Eco-Therapy Wellness Park

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans has commended the social enterprise company National Pride in their environmentally progressive plans for an Eco-Therapy Wellness Park on the site of the former Barony colliery near Auchinleck.

The Barony Eco-Therapy Wellness Centre will work as a health and wellness destination with spa, exercise, and craft activities along with accommodation in lodges and geodesic domes.

The natural woodland site will offer visitors the chance to improve their physical and mental strengths and offer respite for those with long-term illnesses.

The project will make education and training opportunities a priority, to create employment and support other local businesses in the constituency.

The Barony project is putting emphasis on revolutionising how renewable energy can be generated, using modern construction materials and geo-thermal energy from the disused mine. They also aim to refocus natural environment to create oxygen-rich clean and pollutant free air.

The centre will also showcase a memorial garden dedicated to the miners who tragically lost their lives in the coal mine from 1908-1969.

Allan Dorans MP met virtually with the developers this month to hear about their proposals and said: “Having met with the developers of the project, National Pride, I was delighted to hear of their plans to create an ecologically, environmentally friendly, health, wellness and tourism park on the Barony Site.”

“I was also pleased to hear about their plans for the rehabilitation of the memorial garden to remember miners who lost their lives on the site, reflecting the history and culture of the area. I wish them every success.”

Irene Bisset, Chair of National Pride previously said: “We are incredibly excited to be adding the fantastic Barony to our Eco-Therapy and Wellness projects.”

View this article on the Cumnock Chronicles website

Date added: Monday June 14th 2021
From Mary Ann Nichols to Sarah Everard: Allan Dorans on Britain’s unsafe streets for women
From Mary Ann Nichols to Sarah Everard: Allan Dorans on Britain’s unsafe streets for women

In August 1888 Jack the Ripper murdered his first victim, Mary Ann Nichols. In 1977, the first Reclaim the Night protest in Leeds, saw women marching after being told to stay at home because of the Yorkshire Ripper murders. Little has changed in who we focus our attention on when men commit such heinous crimes.

After the tragic death of Sarah Everard this year, women were told ‘not to go out alone’ for their safety. The focus remains on what women should do to protect themselves, rather than focusing on men’s criminal actions.

Despite the turbulence and widespread media attention on the Sarah Everard case, in which women demanded the right to feel safe on the streets, little has been done other than to call for evidence for the proposed Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy. It is still extraordinary that after all this time, progress to improve the safety of our streets for all women, has been so limited, largely in the form of better street lighting, or more undercover police in nightclubs.

This type of ‘sticking plaster’ approach, has clearly not worked and radical improvements are needed to improve the safety for women on our streets.

Street harassment, verbal or physical, against all women is at an epidemic level. In 2018, Plan International UK found that 66% of women had experienced unwanted sexual attention or harassment in a public place.

These figures increase for trans women and minority genders who are two times more likely to be victims of a violent crime than cis people according to the Office for National Statistics.

If we truly want to increase the safety for women on the streets, we must redirect our attention away from what women could do, to why men are making these streets unsafe for women.

The focus for too long has shifted the attention away from men. We must ask why men are harassing, abusing and being violent.

Research for the Government Equalities Office in 2019 undertaken by Durham University found that men who adhere to traditional views of masculinity are more likely to be perpetrators of this type of harassment and abuse:

“Norms of masculinity are a central factor in the continued pervasiveness of violence against women and girls, with expectations of superiority, power and entitlement over women seemingly continuing to be influential in perceptions of what it means to be a man”

Violence against women is a social problem that is indelibly rooted in masculinity. Re-shaping masculinities, at a young age, through education is an obvious approach to reducing aggressive, violent forms of masculinity, inextricably linked to violence against women.

There is disappointingly little evidence of attempts to do this beyond a number of programs in the US. One of the more successful of these is the Boys to Men youth programme in the US which aims to: ‘empower all people to notice and intervene in potentially harmful situations long before they become violent.’

The importance of early educational interventions to prevent untreated minor harassment progressing to more serious harassment or physical violence, is clear. A US study in 2012, found evidence of: ‘a developmental pathway via the adolescents’ development of antisocial behaviour to Male Female Personal Violence perpetration.’

133 years after the first ‘Ripper’ murder, nearly 45 years after the first Reclaim the Night protest and 2 months after the tragic death of Sarah Everard, it is clear that women continue to feel unsafe on our streets.

Radical improvements are needed. We must tackle the root causes of this harassment and violence on the street – we must develop legislation that makes misogyny a criminal offence for preventative action and increase our awareness and improve education of aggressive masculinities which are heavily linked to misogyny and this violence we see against women on our streets.

View this article on Left Foot Forwards website

Date added: Monday June 7th 2021
Cumnock MP backs calls for government to invest £50m into MND research
Cumnock MP backs calls for government to invest £50m into MND research

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans has joined forces with a coalition of charities, neurologists and people with motor neurone disease (MND) to call on the government to target £50million of investment into the terminal illness.

Mr Dorans has written to Minister for Care, Helen Whately urging her to expand government funding for MND research which, according to the Motor Neurone Disease Association, currently stands at less than £5million per year.

The charity itself has recently committed £5.7million to research this year alone.

The campaign, United to End MND, led by the MND Association, MND Scotland, My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, neurologists and people with the disease, is calling on the government to invest £50million over five years in research directly targeted at understanding the causes and identifying potential treatments and hopefully a cure.

Mr Dorans said: “I have also pledged my support to scrap the six-month rule, to ensure that those with MND, and other terminal illnesses, are fast-tracked for the benefits they need.”

View this article on the Cumnock Chronicle website

Date added: Monday June 7th 2021
Allan Dorans MP shows support for Foster Care Fortnight

Allan Dorans MP who represents the Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock constituency is throwing his support behind Foster Care Fortnight, the UKs largest foster care awareness campaign, and urging constituents to consider becoming foster carers this May (10 – 23).

With over 8,500 new foster carers needed across the UK in 2021, becoming a foster carer could be the ideal opportunity for those with the right skills to give back to their community and improve the lives of children who cannot live with their birth family.

Being a foster carer is about more than just providing love for children, it is about what skills you bring to ensure that you can support their development and growth. Foster carers need to have listening, observational, and communications skills, as well as confidence, resilience, and patience. They must be able to offer stability, to be a team player, and sometimes most vitally of all, foster carers need a sense of humour.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, over 55,000 foster carers provided stable and loving homes to more than 65,000 children across the UK. By becoming a foster carer, you become part of a community who are dedicating their lives for the betterment of others with the support of your fostering service and The Fostering Network.
Allan Dorans MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock said:

“The foster carers in my constituency have went above and beyond this past year to provide care, stability and home schooling to young people in need. They are the backbone of our care system and deserve recognition for their endless hard work.”

“We need more people like this to consider becoming a foster carer to ensure more young people can flourish in a loving home. I would encourage any of my constituents who feel they have the right skills, and love to give, to consider becoming a foster carer.”

Kevin Williams, Chief Executive of The Fostering Network, said: “Foster carers have accomplished incredible things every day throughout this last year. In the face of a global crisis that has affected every one of us and impacted all aspects of our society, they have worked tirelessly for the children that they bring into their homes. Foster carers have supported children and young people’s education, health, and social wellbeing, and also helped to maintain the children’s relationships with the people who are important to them but who they have not been able see in person."

“Despite the practical and emotional challenges that the pandemic has brought, foster carers have continued to provide day-to-day support, love and stability to children and young people who can’t live with their birth families – and from the bottom of my heart, I thank them."

“Being a foster carer is to take on a role like no other, so if you are looking for a new lifestyle or career in the aftermath of this dreadful pandemic and you believe you have the right skills, I want you to consider becoming a foster carer.”

To find out more about fostering, and to find your local fostering service, please visit:
https://thefosteringnetwork.org.uk/could-you-foster


Date added: Wednesday June 2nd 2021
ALLAN DORANS MP HIGHLIGHTS OPEN UNIVERSITY SCHOLARSHIP FUND FOR DISABLED VETERANS

Allan Dorans MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock has encouraged disabled veterans to apply for the 2021 Open University Disabled Veterans’ Scholarship Fund.

This scholarship fund provides a free Open University education, alongside careers services and disability support, for up to 50 disabled veterans. All undergraduate and postgraduate courses are eligible.

The Open University has already awarded 160 scholarships, helping individuals from various military backgrounds, and with different physical disabilities and mental health conditions. The accessibility of the University means that disabled veterans can work from home and fit study around their life.

Individuals will be eligible for the fund if they have been injured during military service, or as a result of it.

They are now accepting applications for the 2021/2022 academic year. Applications close at midnight on the 9th July 2021.

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans said: “This scholarship fund is a great chance for disabled veterans in the constituency to gain a university degree qualification from a top-class university.”

“I would love to see some successful applicants from this area get the chance to study excellent courses and receive full support, free of charge. So I really encourage any disabled veterans in the area to consider applying.”

For more information, including eligibility criteria and the scholarship application form, visit the Open University website: http://www.open.ac.uk/courses/choose/veterans



Date added: Wednesday June 2nd 2021
Allan Dorans MP highlights funding available for charities
Allan Dorans MP highlights funding available for charities

Allan Dorans, MP for Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock, has urged local charities and good causes to apply for funding raised by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.

Over 3,500 grassroots organisations in Britain will receive a share of almost £17million this year.

Projects can apply for funding from the People’s Postcode Trust which is for organisations operating in Scotland. Registered charities can apply for up to £20,000 of funding, which is available for both project-based and core costs.

Applications will be accepted every month until October 2021.

Allan Dorans MP said: “Over the last year many local charities have responded to the pandemic by working to support and protect our communities. Yet the last year has also been a difficult time for charity fundraising.

“The funds raised by People’s Postcode Lottery players and available to local charities are therefore a great chance for local organisations to secure funding. Players of People’s Postcode Lottery have already raised over £700million for good causes and I would love to see some more successful applicants from this area so I urge all local charities and community groups to consider submitting an application.”

Visit www.postcodetrust.org.uk.

View this article on the Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Wednesday April 21st 2021
Criminal caught after former policeman turned MP Allan Dorans helps collar would-be thief
Criminal caught after former policeman turned MP Allan Dorans helps collar would-be thief

A quick-thinking MP followed a would-be thief acting suspiciously while waiting for police to arrive.

Allan Dorans, 64, came to the rescue after spotting a man in a plush Ayr garden on Friday morning.

The former police officer was out training for the Kiltwalk when he saw the 36-year-old looking into the window of a property on Doonfoot Road – where houses are valued at just under £400k.

He phoned 999 and followed the suspect until police arrived.

Mr Dorans told the Post: “I was out walking at about 6am when I noticed a man acting suspiciously in the garden.

“He was dressed all in grey with a hoody top on and he went up to a caravan which was parked in the drive and started looking in the window.

“Then he went up to the front window of the house and was looking in before going up to the large garden gate and starting shaking it trying to open it.

“At that point I phoned the police. While I was waiting for them the man came out of the garden and began walking away, so I followed him.
“I called 999 again and told the control centre he was now walking down Gearholm Road and I followed him to Culzean Road.

“Just as the police arrived he was climbing over a wooden fence into another garden.

“I’m not sure what he was up to but he looked very suspicious.”

Officers arrested the 36-year-old and took him to Ayr Police Station.

After that they told Mr Dorans that he was out on bail accused of another crime and he had broken his curfew.

The Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP added: “Police detained him and have since told me that he was out on bail and shouldn’t have been out of his house between 7pm to 7am.

“I’m a former Detective Inspector and you never lose that eye for it.
“Once a cop, always a cop.”

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that a 36-year-old man was arrested following reports of someone acting suspiciously in the Doonfoot Road area of Ayr on the morning of Friday March 13.

“Enquiries into the matter are ongoing and a report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.”

View this article on the Daily Record website

Date added: Thursday September 17th 2020
AYR, CARRICK & CUMNOCK MP CHALLENGES PRIME MINISTER BORIS JOHNSTON

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP, Allan Dorans challenged Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, over The Secretary of State for Scotland, Alistair Jack ignoring Scottish Government guidelines and making a 700 mile round trip to Westminster last week. Mr Dorans asked the Prime Minister during Prime Ministers Questions if he condemned or condoned Mr Jack’s behaviour.

This journey was despite MPs throughout the United Kingdom for the past 7 weeks all  being able to take part in full Parliamentary business, debates and Question times from home using online conference links.

Mr Dorans also took the opportunity last week to ask Mr Jack in Parliament for his justification for a totally unnecessary journey when he could have taken part in Scotland Office Question Time virtually, from the safety of his home without putting himself and others at risk.

“Last Wednesday parliament voted 350-v- 258 not to continue virtual parliament. This was disappointing as it means 650 MPs will be expected to return to Westminster on June 2nd. As social distancing is still in place due to Covid 19 only 50 MPs can sit in the chamber at once.”

“At this precarious stage of the crisis, it seems reckless and ill thought out during this crisis to  ask MPs to leave their constituencies, incur travel and accommodation expenses when they can’t fully participate in debates.”  Allan Dorans MP said.

For the last nine weeks, during the Coronavirus pandemic, the Scottish Government health advice has been Stay Home, Protect the NHS and Save Lives. This advice has helped greatly slow the spread of this disease, save lives and currently remains in force.

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020
Train Derailment
Train Derailment

A one-minute silence was held at Ayr Railway Station last Wednesday and at railway stations across the UK to honour three men killed in a train derailment in Aberdeenshire on Wednesday 12th August.

Driver Brett McCullough, 45, conductor Donald Dinnie, 58, and passenger Christopher Stuchbury, 62, died near Stonehaven. Six others were injured.

The train derailed after hitting a landslip following heavy rain.
Stations fell silent at 09:43 - the time the crash was reported two weeks ago.

The short service at Ayr Station was attended by Management, staff and union representatives of Scotrail and Network Rail,  British Transport Police and Allan Dorans MP representing the constituents of Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock.

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020
Allan Dorans MP for Ayr, Carrick & Cumnock welcomes Census change to Count Armed Forces Community In
Allan Dorans MP for Ayr, Carrick & Cumnock welcomes Census change to Count Armed Forces Community In

For the first time in the history of the Census, there will be a question on service in the Armed Forces following a campaign led by Poppyscotland and The Royal British Legion and supported by Allan Dorans MP.

Allan Dorans MP is delighted that both the UK Parliament and the Scottish Parliament have announced that the next Census will now include a question to provide information on whether someone has served in HM Armed Forces. The next Census is currently due to take place in 2021 in England and Wales and 2022 in Scotland.

Poppyscotland and the Legion, who led the campaign, are at the heart of a national network offering a range of support and services to the Armed Forces community. The decision to include the question on the next census will provide Poppyscotland and the Legion, as well as public bodies, local authorities, and other military charities with valuable information to ensure they can best meet the needs of serving personnel, veterans and their families.

It has been estimated that there are 2.4 million veterans currently living in Great Britain, who make up part of a wider ex-Service community that includes their spouses, partners, dependent children and widow(er)s. However, little is currently known about the exact numbers, location and needs of this significant group. Including an Armed Forces question in the next census would provide public bodies, local authorities, and charities with valuable information to ensure they are able to deliver the best services they can for our Armed Forces community. 
Allan Dorans MP commented “ Having a better understanding of the profile and needs of veterans is a key part of making sure our public services are tailored for our Armed Forces community. I welcome this historic change to the next Census to include a question on the Armed Forces.”

Mark Collins, Interim Chief Executive of Poppyscotland, said: “We would like to thank the scores of politicians from across the spectrum at Holyrood and Westminster, several local authorities and our volunteers and supporters who came together to support our Count Them In campaign. I am also grateful to National Records of Scotland for working closely with us throughout the process, from devising potential questions through to testing and considering the outputs.”Charles Byrne, Director-General of The Royal British Legion, added: “This is an extremely proud moment for the Legion. This is something we have been striving towards for many years and it will have a huge impact on service personnel, veterans and their families well into the future, as the outcome will allow us to provide more effective care and support to those who are in need. We are delighted and are extremely grateful to everyone who has supported the campaign”.” 

Constituents can find out more about the  campaign by visiting the Poppyscotland website, https://www.poppyscotland.org.uk/poppyscotland-secures-census-question-for-armed-forces-community/

‘Count Them In’ demonstrates Poppyscotland and The Royal British Legion’s  ongoing work  to champion the interests, welfare, and contributions of the Armed Forces community.

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020
Tourism Industry starts to Reopen
Tourism Industry starts to Reopen

From Wednesday July 15th we will see our caravan parks, self-catering apartments and hotels reopen across Scotland as our tourism industry comes back to life after the lockdown caused by Covid-19.

Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP Allan Dorans MP recently visited The Walled Garden Caravan and Camping Park on the Kilkerran Estate between Crosshill and Dailly to meet the owners, Barry and Dorothy Cowan and to discuss the upcoming holiday season. Mr and Mrs Cowan have been carefully following the Scottish Government guidelines for the safe opening of the Park.

Dorothy Cowan said “We will be complying with social distancing; we have installed hand sanitisers throughout our site, and we have installed clear signage with gentle reminders to keep all our holiday makers safe. We will also ensure that we take all our visitors’ details so that we can help with track and trace. We are looking forward to reopening and people visiting us throughout the summer”

Commenting on the Park, Allan Dorans MP stated “Although I was born and brought up near here, I had never visited the Walled Garden until now. I am absolutely amazed at the beauty and tranquillity of the Park set in the stunning Ayrshire countryside. It really is a hidden gem, I am delighted that the Park is now opening and sincerely hope that the hard work put in to upgrading the facilities over the last few years pays off for Barry and Dorothy and they have an outstandingly successful holiday season. It’s been a very difficult time for our tourism industry, and it is great to see our local businesses start to re-open and normality resume”

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020
Ayr MP challenges Boris Johnson on support to veterans at PMQs
Ayr MP challenges Boris Johnson on support to veterans at PMQs

AYR’S MP took the case of Hollybush House, a residential treatment centre for veterans, to the heart of Westminster last week.

Allan Dorans MP challenged Boris Johnson on what he is doing to support veterans’ mental health and highlighted the case of Hollybush House which is owned by the charity Combat Stress who have been forced to reduce their capacity with many jobs cut at the Ayr site.

Speaking at Prime Minister’s Questions, the Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock MP, said: “In this financial year, the UK Government have redistributed funding meant for veterans’ charities.

“That has resulted in severely reduced services from Combat Stress, a renowned mental health charity serving veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

“It has also meant a reduction from 24 to 10 beds in our residential unit in my constituency, and the loss of 50 jobs.

“Will the Prime Minister show his support for veterans’ mental health today by initiating an urgent review of that redistribution of this critical funding, so that we can stop life-changing and often life-saving services being lost?”

The Prime Minister responded saying that Mr Dorans “is absolutely right to raise the issue of veterans and their needs, and that is why the UK Government appointed a Minister for Defence People and Veterans, and a veterans taskforce—a special unit in the Cabinet Office”.

Mr Dorans’ question to Boris Johnson came after the Chief Executive of Combat Stress, Sue Freeth, called on the UK Government to “step-up” to “address the gap” caused by the funding distribution.

Speaking in January she said: “Historically, 40 per cent of our income came from the government.

“These sources of funding have been redistributed and veterans are struggling to get the help they need.

“Now 90 per cent dependent on public donations, we cannot supply a critical service to four UK nations on £10 million per annum when most of the funding is coming from the public and charitable sector funds.

She added: “The government must step up and we are seeking urgent talks to address the gap.”

View this article on the Ayr Advertisers website

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020
Allan Dorans MP and Anneka Rice help launch Marie Curie’s Great Daffodil Appeal
Allan Dorans MP and Anneka Rice help launch Marie Curie’s Great Daffodil Appeal

Allan Dorans  MP and presenter and Strictly Come Dancing contestant, Anneka Rice, have joined forces this March to help Marie Curie provide care and support to more people living with a terminal illness.

Allan and Marie Curie Ambassador, Anneka, were pictured together with Marie Curie Rapid Response Healthcare Assistant, Lukmon Adeyemi, at the parliamentary event to celebrate the launch of the Great Daffodil Appeal, Marie Curie’s biggest annual fundraising campaign, held every March.

Allan pledged his support to the Appeal and is encouraging local people to donate and wear one of the charity’s daffodil pins to help fund vital care and support for people living with a terminal illness, and their families.

Allan  said: “Every five minutes, someone in the UK dies without getting the care and support they need at the end of their life and that is why I am supporting the Great Daffodil Appeal this March. Without your help, Marie Curie Nurses can’t give vital care to people living with a terminal illness and their families.”

Launched in 1986, the Appeal is crucial in raising much-needed funds to enable the charity to continue providing nursing and hospice care, a freephone support line and information for people living with any terminal illness such as terminal cancer, dementia, heart failure, and motor neurone disease. 

Anneka says: “I was thrown into a world of utter confusion and sadness when I had to care for two elderly parents, living separately but both with dementia. At the time I didn’t know who to reach out to as I knew nothing at all about the illness. At the time, I wish I’d known about the organisations that exist to help.”

On becoming a Marie Curie Ambassador in 2019, Anneka said: “They are just a brilliant bunch of people, quietly getting on with very, very, important work. We all want to be well-looked after at the end of our lives. Marie Curie need our help, so that they can help more people have a good death. I’m so proud to support them.”

Scott Sinclair, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at Marie Curie, said: “Having the support of Allan Dorans MP  and Anneka makes a huge difference to our Great Daffodil Appeal.
“Too many people miss out on the care and support they need. By donating and wearing a daffodil pin in March you are helping us to support more people at the most difficult time of their lives. We want to make sure that everyone affected by terminal illness, wherever they may live, gets the right support, at the right time – whether that is high quality nursing care, emotional and practical support, or fast access to the benefits they need.”

To support the Great Daffodil Appeal, get your daffodil pin from volunteers on high streets around the UK, as well as Marie Curie shops, Superdrug, Savers, SPAR UK, Hotter Shoes and Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group.

To find out more about the Great Daffodil Appeal, visit www.mariecurie.org.uk/daffodil or call or call 0800 304 7025 for more information.  To Donate £5 to Marie Curie, text DAFF to 70999. 

View this article on The World News website

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020
Waspi Women 4th March 2020
Waspi Women 4th March 2020

MP Allan Dorans joined over 70 MPs from all parties at an information session at the House of Commons on 4th March organised by the Women Against State Pension Injustice (WASPI) Campaign.
 
Anne Keen, Co-founder of the Women Against State Pension Injustice (WASPI) Campaign said:” We were delighted to see Mr Dorans at our event. He clearly understands the plight of women born in the 1950s who were denied several years of the State Pensions they paid into all their working lives. We couldn’t have wished for a better response to our invitations to MPs to attend the Drop-in session. It was quite overwhelming. The support for our campaign for justice was evident. We hope that Parliament will now address the issue as a matter of urgency. Many 1950s women are suffering.”

Allan Dorans MP commented “I have always been and will continue to be a strong supporter for the WASPI women whose pensions were stolen by successive governments. There are over 3.2 million affected in the UK and 6,700 in this constituency alone. I will continue to fight this injustice on their behalf”. 

Date added: Thursday September 3rd 2020

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