My name is Robbie Leith. I am standing for the Lerwick South ward in the Council election. I am a taxi driver and barman in Lerwick, and a musician at the weekend.
I am on the left of the political spectrum. I want to be a councillor because I would like to make life better and bearable for the people who live here.
We are living in times when public money is very scarce – partly due to the actions of previous Councils. Unfortunately, the cure that some councillors are proposing could be fatal. The timetable that has been suggested for cuts, and the level of those cuts, is far too fast, and far too great.
So the main task for the new Council will be to revisit the Council’s finances, with a view to protecting services for the vulnerable people who depend on them. Candidates who believe that we will solve all our problems by sacking large numbers of public service workers are living in dreamland. Large numbers of redundancies will not just reduce demand in our economy – it might well lead to depopulation.
I have had my share of health problems in the past, and I am very concerned about the situation at Lerwick Health Centre. Voters have complained to me that there are far too few appointments available. The Council needs to make representations to the Health Board about this problem at the earliest opportunity.
I have taken a great interest in the windfarm question, and I understand the fears of some people, especially about its environmental impact. But the project is going ahead, and Shetland must make the best of it. If the windfarm can help Shetland’s ailing finances – and sustain our social services and our recreational and cultural facilities – that can only be a good thing.
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