Jackie Baillie has hit out at a rival candidate for the Holyrood elections for taking Scottish Labour’s achievements in government and passing them off as her own.
In a recent newspaper article the SNP candidate challenged Jackie to commit to maintaining a number of key universal benefits, including free university tuition, free prescriptions, free bus passes free personal care for older people, free school meals and free childcare.
Jackie supports universal benefits and pointed out that many of these policies were introduced by the previous Labour-led Scottish Government more than ten years ago. Free bus passes, free personal care for older people, free central heating and free childcare were all policies which Jackie Baillie’s party delivered when they were in government.
Jackie is now throwing down a challenge of her own, calling on the SNP candidate to come clean on her stance on the Vale of Leven hospital.
“I am happy to put on record my support for many universal benefits which have made a huge difference to family budgets in Dumbarton, Vale of Leven, Helensburgh and Lomond. However I find it extraordinary that the SNP candidate has so little to say that she has resorted to pinching policies, many of which were delivered under a Scottish Labour government which left office 9 years ago. After being in power for nearly a decade and with a majority in parliament, the SNP has clearly run out of positive ideas for Scotland’s future.
“Now that we are both agreed on maintaining Scottish Labour’s legacy in government, it’s time for the SNP candidate to come clean on the Vale hospital. Why has she been silent on the closure of ward 6? Why has she been silent on the reduction in clinics? Why is she now silent on the possible loss of emergency care and maternity services? This area needs an MSP who will fight for them, not someone who meekly follows the party line.
“And where was she and the SNP when our police station was being closed and transferred to Paisley? I seem to recall that they defended the Chief Constable whilst I was defending our local community and front line officers