General Election 2019 / Alistair Carmichael

Liberal Democrats

I have always regarded it as an enormous privilege to represent these islands in Parliament.  It is a privilege that I have always sought to earn and have never taken for granted. As MP for Shetland and Orkney my priority has always been to give our communities a voice in the House of Commons. If I am again elected in December I will continue to put these islands first.

Over the years I have been able to help thousands of local people when they needed, whether with benefits, tax, immigration, broadband connection or anything else. Being available and approachable has been and always will be an essential part of how this job should be done.

In the last few weeks alone I have been fighting to keep Post Office services, to maintain locally provided air traffic control and to ensure that our fishermen are properly represented in the crucial December talks.

On climate change issues, I led the fight in Parliament to get support for local developers of wave and tidal power and worked to end single-use plastic and to clean up our seas.

I believe that the experience I have as your MP gives me an enormous advantage in making our case.

Recent elections in Orkney and Shetland have been between the Liberal Democrats and the SNP and this looks to be no different. It is important to set out where we differ.

I am proud of being both Scottish and British. I believe that the majority of people in the Northern Isles share my view that breaking up the UK is a bad idea. We said so, clearly, in 2014. I will oppose SNP plans for another independence referendum.

Both the SNP and the Conservatives have shown strong centralising instincts in recent years. For us in the isles this is an ever-present danger.

The removal of local control of services like police, fire, ambulance, healthcare and education have all left us with a poorer service when we need it.This election was called because Parliament could not break the Brexit deadlock. Liberal Democrats have always believed in cooperating with our friends in Europe, and we continue to argue that our best future is as part of the European Union.

The institutions of the European Union need reform. Some, like the Common Fisheries Policy, probably need to be scrapped and taken right back to the beginning. I shall always argue for a fisheries management system that puts fishermen at the heart of the decision-making process.

Getting a good deal for local farmers, crofters and fishermen; getting the super fast broadband and mobile phone coverage that we need; taking action to tackle the climate emergency, to end the abuse of single-use plastics and cleaning up our seas.

These need to be priorities for our next Member of Parliament. I believe that they are the priorities of local people here in the isles. If I am again elected as your MP they will be my priorities.

I invite anyone looking to get in touch, whether to help with my campaign or to discuss issues, to contact me here:

Twitter: AMCarmichaelMP