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The Working Life of Christina McKelvie MSP
29th March 2012

Nordic Horizons

Hello everyone, welcome to another week in my life as the MSP for Hamilton, Larkhall & Stonehouse.

At the beginning of the week, I had the pleasure of welcoming John Brown from the chamber of commerce, Jim McCaffer of South Lanarkshire Council and Ronnie Smith of Business Gateway into my office in Hamilton, for our take on the ‘Job Summit’. A proposal I put to the groups a while back, in a bid to tackle the lack of employment oppotunities in the area I represent. After all, the current job situation in Hamilton, Larkhall & Stonehouse is not where any of us believed it should be and I, personally believe – working alongside the Scottish Government’s employment strategy guarantees (25,000 new modern apprenticeships every year the SNP are in government, until 2016) and the proposals to help small business’s flourish across the nation (The small business bonus being introduced and secured until 2016) - we have an opportunity to work together to ensure we make a lasting, positive impact on the level of employment in my constituency. You can also rest assured that this will not be the last meeting of this nature and I hope to welcome other representatives of job promoting groups back into my office in the near future.

After the ‘Job Summit’ on Monday evening, I attended Hamilton Sports Performer of the Year Awards held in the Banqueting Suite of South Lanarkshire Council. An event attended by athletes, families, community activists and elected members alike, giving us all the opportunity to congratulate the outstanding achievements of , not only the award-winners but everyone else that has taken part in the various sporting activities represented on the night - after all it’s not the winning, it’s the taking part that counts. The event was supported by my good friend and colleague, Councillor Graeme Horne, rounded up with a vote of thanks by another friend and colleague, Councillor Bobby Lawson and prizes were presented by myself among other representatives of the sports council. The wonderful Cathy Bennett got the Rosebowl as reward for the tireless effort she puts into sport in the Hamilton area. Well done Cathy.

On Tuesday, I had the chance to meet with a Danish School -Arhus Marseliseorg –who were over visiting the Scottish Parliament. They embarked on their visit early in the morning, touring the Debating Chamber, Garden Lobby and Committee Room’s, focusing mainly on what happens in the Scottish Parliament, for example, the work of MSPs, debates, votes and committees as well as providing information on the Parliament building itself.

As you can see by the picture below, the group were sporting shorts, t-shirts and sun hats and were eager to get out and enjoy this unexpected early appearance of the Scottish sunshine.​

Tonight I, along with the Embassy of Iceland, will be sponsoring an event held in the Scottish Parliament as part of the Nordic Horizons programme. The event will also be attended by the Ambassador of Iceland and should kick off at around 6pm. Following the financial crash of Iceland in 2008- which made it clear that the 1944 Constitution (written at the time of gaining independence from Denmark) was no longer sufficient for today’s needs- the group have toured countries discussing their reason for independence and why they still believe in it. The main speaker will be Dr Thorvaldur Gylfason, (Professor of Economics at the University of Iceland) and will discuss the new constitution and how it came to be written by the people themselves. It will be chaired by Lesley Riddoch, the writer and broadcaster, Professor David McCrone and Professor Emeritus Elizabeth Meehan will make up the discussion panel among other MSP’s that wish to attend. So, as you can imagine, an exciting night ahead, and one I am sure I will update you in next week’s addition of my blog. In the meantime, visit their website and see what they have planned in the future.

Anyway, I’m off to get myself ready for the evening ahead. Look forward to catching up next week.

Yours Sincerely

Christina McKelvie MSP for Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse.

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