Name: Tom Morton Electoral Ward: Shetland North Description: Scottish Labour Party
I’m proud to be standing as the official Scottish Labour Party candidate for Shetland Islands Council, representing the powerhouse of the Isles, Shetland North.
I have lived in Northmavine for over 30 years with my wife Susan Bowie, and the two of us have raised three children here, all with the huge privilege of an education at Brae High School. I’ve worked as a journalist and broadcaster but also with Northmavine Community Development Company, the Unst Partnership, as a non-executive board member at NHS Shetland, a trustee of Shetland Charitable Trust, a funeral celebrant and a community councillor.
Having now fully recovered from serious illness, I’m keen to represent Shetland North as a Scottish Labour candidate as I believe the party’s values best represent a viable and valuable future for Shetland and its people. Compassion, social justice and fairness are traditional Shetland qualities, and these are the core ideals of the Scottish Labour Party.
If elected I intend to commit myself to working for the good of Shetland and specifically the community here in the North. We have been through two very difficult years due to the pandemic, and Covid will be with us for a long time to come.
– I will fight to secure and expand the employment available in our major industries. While Sullom Voe’s long-term future will lie, for the sake of our planet, in renewables, the immediate need for the UK to secure oil and gas supplies free from Russian interference means Shetland has a major and continuing role to play in the extraction, processing and transfer of oil and gas from the North Sea and Atlantic.
– We are all facing huge increases in the cost of living. The council must act to support those most vulnerable and to help everyone cope with difficult times ahead. It can and should invest in better insulation, transport solutions and energy advice. Ensuring that the council’s housing stock is properly insulated and has access to renewable energy is of paramount importance
– A new Brae School is crucial to the future of our children and I will campaign to ensure that this is built as quickly and in as high a quality as possible, providing the facilities needed now and in the future, with full local consultation.
– Social and health care must be funded properly and services to every part of Shetland secured, both at home and in care centres. We need to be aware that further outbreaks of Covid variants are likely, and the council must with NHS Shetland plan for this and the likely social and economic effects.
– The development of small-scale local businesses and community projects, as in the success of NortEnergy in making and marketing the Polycrub, NCDC’s Growing Local and the Community Development Company of Nesting’s Auld Skül and more, will be encouraged and supported.
It is absolutely essential that Shetland Islands Council’s activities and decisions are made transparent, open and accountable to the people of Shetland, and as a councillor I would do my best to ensure this happens, and will start with my own work as a councillor. Make local politics accessible, accountable, open and dynamic. Make it YOUR council.