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Gavin Newlands MP pledges to help charity raise awareness of screening in Paisley and Renfrewshire North during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month in April

gavin newlands

Gavin Newlands MP pledges to help charity raise awareness of screening in Paisley and Renfrewshire North during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month in April.

gavin newlands
Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North is supporting Bowel Cancer UK’s campaign to urge more people to take part in bowel cancer screening and save lives, as part of Bowel Cancer Awareness Month in April.

More than 1,500 people die from bowel cancer in Scotland every year, and it’s the country’s second biggest cancer killer.  However, it shouldn’t be. It’s treatable and curable, especially if diagnosed early.

Bowel cancer screening can save lives but at the moment in some areas of the country only half of those who receive a test complete it. Thousands of people are missing out on the chance to detect bowel cancer early when it is easier to treat.

Gavin Newlands MP said, “As the local MP, I am committed to improving uptake rates for bowel cancer screening, both locally and nationally. I would urge my constituents who are sent a bowel screening test to use it.  Taking part in bowel cancer screening is the best way to get diagnosed early.  If you are over 50, take the test when you receive it in the post. If you are younger, tell the people over 50 in your life to take the test. Early diagnosis really can save lives.”

Deborah Alsina, Chief Executive of Bowel Cancer UK, said, “I’d like to thank Gavin Newlands for supporting our campaign during Bowel Cancer Awareness Month to raise participation levels for bowel cancer screening. In Scotland, one in 15 men and one in 19 women will be diagnosed with bowel cancer during their lifetime but it is treatable and curable, especially if diagnosed early.”

The Scotland Bowel Cancer Screening Programme can detect bowel cancer at an early stage in people with no symptoms when it is easier to treat. If you’re registered with a GP and aged 50-74, you will receive a test in the post every two years. You carry out the simple test at home in private and it comes with step by step instructions. The test looks for hidden blood in your poo, which could be an early sign of bowel cancer.

Visit Bowel Cancer UK’s website to find out how you can get involved in their campaign for Bowel Cancer Awareness Month: bowelcanceruk.org.uk<http://www.bowelcanceruk.org.uk>.

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Gavin Newlands MP holds roundtable event on neonatal care in Scotland

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, has held a roundtable event to discuss how neonatal care in Scotland can be improved.

Gavin Newlands MP with Caroline Lee-Davey, Chief Executive of Bliss Scotland

In partnership with Bliss Scotland, Mr Newlands brought together other Scottish MPs and health professionals to discuss the Bliss Scotland Baby Report 2017. This report set out an up-to-date picture of neonatal care in Scotland and outlined a series of recommendations to improve the support offered to premature and sick babies.

In January, the Scottish Government published the maternity and neonatal services report ‘The Best Start: A Five Year Forward Plan for Maternity and Neonatal Care in Scotland’ which set out a vision for the future. The Scottish Government responded to The Best Start report to accept the recommendations set out within it

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“My family has had direct experience of the fantastic neonatal care in our hospitals and we will be forever grateful to the care that we received. However, we should not rest on our laurels and improvements can be made to ensure that every mother and baby can receive the best possible care from Scotland’s health service.

“I was delighted to work in partnership with Bliss Scotland to bring together MPs from across Scotland as well as health professionals to discuss neonatal care in Scotland and how we can deliver improvements to this vital service.

“The Scottish Government have been proactive in working to improve neonatal care in Scotland and I look forward to playing my part in helping to ensure that every premature or sick baby and their mother receives the best possible care.”

Caroline Lee-Davey, Chief Executive of Bliss Scotland, said: “I would like to thank Gavin Newlands MP for hosting this roundtable discussion on our Bliss Scotland Baby report. Over 5,800 babies are born premature or sick in Scotland every year and we welcome the chance to shine a light on their experiences by discussing Bliss Scotland’s findings in Westminster. The Scottish Government recently set out ambitious new plans for neonatal care – we welcome these, but Bliss Scotland would also like to see immediate action to address the current staffing issues raised in our Baby report alongside implementation of the plans for the future.”

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Gavin Newlands MP welcomes New Powers to Tackle Domestic Abuse

Gavin Newlands MP

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North has welcomed the Scottish Government’s new Domestic Abuse Bill which was introduced on Monday.

Gavin Newlands MP
The new bill will strengthen the laws against those who psychologically abuse their partners using coercive and controlling behaviour. The Bill creates a new statutory offence of domestic abuse that recognises the damage and hurt that non-physical abuse can cause.

Last year, Mr Newlands submitted a consultation response to the Scottish Government, calling on them to introduce an offence which takes action on those on commit psychological abuse.

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“Domestic abuse takes many different forms, including psychological and coercive abuse – both which can be just as damaging as physical abuse. I am proud that, as a society, we’ve come a long way from believing that domestic abuse is not only a physical act. The truth is that the psychological scars left by emotional abuse can have devastating effects on victims. I’m glad that the Scottish Government are working hard to make sure perpetrators face the justice they deserve.

“This bill will help our police and prosecutors hold abusers to account, but importantly, it also shows those who have suffered abuse that we stand with them and will take the steps needed to help them. This Bill will send a strong message to everyone who has suffered domestic abuse that the problem is taken seriously and I hope it will encourage more survivors to come forward.

“I know that legislation alone will not tackle the scourge of domestic abuse, which is why support services like the YWCA, alongside ASSIST, Scottish Women’s Aid and many other groups are so important in providing a vital lifeline for survivors.”

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Gavin Newlands MP highlights Scottish Apprenticeship Week

Gavin Newlands MP joined the Finance Secretary Derek MacKay at the National Construction College in Inchinnan last Friday for a Women in Construction event, held as part of the Scottish Apprenticeship Week and organised by CITB Scotland, the Industry Training Board and Sector Skills Council for the construction industry.

The event involved pupils from 3 Renfrewshire schools – St Benedict’s High School, Paisley Grammar and Trinity High School.  The pupils took part in a mix of hands on activities and had the chance to hear from role models currently working in construction.


Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“I was delighted to support CITB Scotland’s Women into Construction event at the National Construction College in Inchinnan last Friday. It was great to see so many young women from Trinity High, St Benedict’s and Paisley Grammar supporting the event and learning new skills.

“Apprenticeships are an important contributor to our society and economy, promoting economic development and helping to reduce youth unemployment. They provide young people with an exciting opportunity to gain a rewarding career and also help meet the needs of our economy.

“I’m especially delighted that CITB Scotland organised this event which encourages young women to think about applying for a construction-based apprenticeship. I support their aim of encouraging more women to get into construction and hope that some of the pupils taking part in Friday’s event give this a serious thought.”


Finance Secretary Derek Mackay MSP said:

“I enjoyed seeing first-hand the large number of people, particularly women, taking part in Apprenticeship week.

“Since this Government came into office in 2007, over 200,000 Modern Apprenticeship starts have been delivered.

“By significantly boosting the number of apprentice places on offer, we are reinforcing our commitment to provide accessible education opportunities which will support our learners and the wider economy.

“I would encourage more employers, both large and small, to take advantage of the opportunities presented by employing Modern Apprentices, and talk to Skills Development Scotland to find out more.”

Ian Hughes, Strategic Partnerships Director, CITB, said: “Scottish Apprenticeship Week is a key fixture in the CITB calendar. It helps us to raise awareness of the crucial role that young people and apprenticeships play within the construction industry.

“I was delighted to welcome Mr Newlands and Mr Mackay to the National Construction College to meet with the girls as they gained valuable insight into the types of exciting careers available to them within the Scottish construction industry. More than 2,000 new workers are needed each year just to keep up with demand – and construction needs women as much as it needs men.”

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Gavin Newlands MP criticises Chancellor’s ‘out-of-touch’ Budget

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, has criticised the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s ‘out-of-touch budget which fails to deliver for people on low incomes and is completely silent about the damage that Brexit will cause to the national economy.

Mr Newlands, who spoke during the budget debate, pointed to the Resolution Foundation research which reported that the Tory Government’s tax and social security policies would “drive the biggest increase in inequality since Thatcher” and a recent analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies highlights that austerity could stretch well into the middle of the next decade.

Gavin Newlands MP commented:

“Despite the Prime Minister and the Chancellor previously proclaiming to want to lead a country ‘that works for everyone’; this budget completely decimates any notion of this being a ‘one nation’ government. For the past seven years, the Tories have mishandled our economy, missed their own economic targets and forced the most vulnerable to pay for their ideological small government desires.

“The Chancellor didn’t say anything on how he will support UK industries facing trade barriers, and how he will fill the black hole left by the loss of EU funding for our universities, for our businesses, and for key sectors of our economy like agriculture.

“Scotland is being forcefully removed from the EU and single market against the wishes of the people of Scotland. Independent analysis suggests that Brexit could cost 80,000 jobs in Scotland. However, despite these stark warnings, Brexit was the elephant in the room during the Chancellor’s budget speech, with only one passing reference.

“The Chancellor also stayed silent on EU citizens, who are vital to supporting our economy and our public services. He must recognise their contribution to our economy and society by guaranteeing their rights.

“Finally, on International Women’s Day, when WASPI women are protesting outside Westminster, this Budget once again continues to avert introducing transitional arrangement’s to help the 2.6 million women affected gives no mention of righting the wrong done to these women who have had their plans for their pension destroyed.

“This is a budget that lays bare that the price of a hard Tory Brexit will be paid by those that have the least throughout this United Kingdom. If this is the price of staying in this dysfunctional union then I’m not buying and neither will Scotland.”

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SOCIAL SECURITY PANELS TO SHAPE NEW SYSTEM SNP MP CALLS ON LOCAL PEOPLE TO SIGN UP

Gavin Newlands MP

Gavin Newlands, SNP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, has called on local people to sign up and help shape Scotland’s new social security system – with the Scottish Government seeking to learn from the experiences of those currently using the service.

Gavin Newlands MP

At least 2,000 people with experience of the current social security system are being recruited to help shape Scotland’s new system – allowing the Scottish Government to learn from mistakes made in the past. The panels will work with the expert advisory group on disability and carers’ benefits.

Gavin Newlands MP has said that it marks an important step on the Scottish Government’s plans to build a social security system based on dignity and respect.

Commenting, SNP MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, Gavin Newlands said:

“The Scottish Government has been clear that it intends to build a fairer and more respectful social security system once the full powers are devolved over this area – and it is good to see them continue to make good on this promise.

“I hope people across Renfrewshire take the opportunity to sign up to the Scottish Government’s panels and play their part in creating a social security system with fairness at its heart.

“Any government system, be it in education, health, immigration or social security, needs to take fully into account the views and experiences of the people who have used this service at the frontline – and asking 2,000 people with service experience for their views is a clear example of the Scottish Government doing exactly that.

“We have seen for too long the damage that has been wrought by the callous and ideological system operated by the Tories at Westminster – putting the needs of people last and doing all they can to scapegoat and stigmatise those that need the safety net of welfare.

“The Scottish Government’s is committed to building a new social security system based on dignity and respect for people across Renfrewshire and this development is an important step on the way to achieving this.”

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MORE CUTS TO DISABILITY BENEFITS “COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE”

Gavin Newlands MP

MP Gavin Newlands has described further cuts to disability benefits as “completely unacceptable” and called for an assurance from the UK government that disabled people will not be left with less financial support as a result of the proposals.

Gavin Newlands MP

The UK government has announced emergency legislation to change PIPs, which replaced Disability Living Allowance, and overturn two tribunal rulings last year which it claims would have added £3.7bn to the benefits bill by 2023.  The support is designed to help people cope with the extra costs of living with ill health or disability.

Tory MP and head of the Number 10 Policy Unit George Freeman, said the changes would ensure that benefits went to people who are “really disabled” rather than people “who suffer from anxiety”.  His comments have drawn criticism from opposition MPs and disability organisations.

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“For a Tory MP and one of Theresa May’s most senior advisers to suggest that people with a mental health disability are not “really disabled” is completely unacceptable and wrong – his words also highlight this Tory government’s total lack of understanding or compassion when it comes to providing for those who are less fortunate than others.

“The Tories said there would be no further cuts to disability support during this parliament but once again they have shown that the price of their failed austerity project is to be borne by those who can least able to bear it.

“The UK government must urgently clarify what these new proposals will mean for people who currently receive PIPs and give an assurance that any changes will not result in a reduction in financial support as the Tories promised.

“I have signed the “prayer” motion laid in the House of Commons to formally object to this legislation and I call on all MPs to unite in opposition against these changes by adding their signature too.”

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Gavin Newlands MP celebrates the passing of a landmark law to tackle violence against women

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, has welcomed a landmark law to tackle violence against women which passed its Third Reading in the House of Commons on Friday with an overwhelming majority of 138 in favour to just 1 against.


Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP’s Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence (Ratification of Convention) Bill 2017, requires the UK government to ratify the Istanbul Convention – a far-reaching new law that puts legal obligations on the state to prevent violence against women, protect women and prosecute the perpetrators.


The Bill, which has been championed by women’s equality organisations including IC Change, Women’s Aid, Scottish Women’s Aid, Rape Crisis Scotland, White Ribbon, End Violence Against Women, Scottish Women’s convention, NUS, Girlguiding, and the Fawcett Society received cross-party support. The Bill also received strong support from the actor and UN Women Global Goodwill Ambassador, Emma Watson, who this week wrote to all MPs urging them to vote for the Bill.


Commenting after the Bill passed its Third Reading, Gavin Newlands MP said:

“I am delighted that this landmark legislation to combat gender-based violence has received such overwhelming cross-party support and now looks set to be ratified.

“I am so proud of my colleague Eilidh Whiteford for the way in which she has skilfully steered this bill through the House of Commons.

“This is a huge and historic step forward in efforts to tackle violence against women and has the potential to transform the lives of thousands of women right across the country. I commend IC Change and other campaign groups who have worked on this issue for all their hard work.

“I have worked hard on this issue ever since my election, and over the course of the campaign we have sent letters, asked several parliamentary questions, submitted numerous EDM’s, held a roundtable event, and together with IC Change have built support across the House for ratification.

“The Istanbul Convention is the most comprehensive and far-reaching framework that exists to tackle violence against women in its many forms and manifestations, and critically, it provides the legal apparatus to hold governments accountable for their progress.

“Passing of this Bill sends a message of hope and solidarity throughout the country, to every refuge, to every woman living in fear of violence from their partner or ex-partner, to every child who witnesses their parent being abused. Let’ change that story, let’s end the violence.”

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Gavin Newlands MP joins campaign to save lives

Every single year in the UK, 30,000 people suffer a sudden cardiac arrest. Sadly, just less than 1-in-10 survive. It’s time to take action.

As part of European Restart a Heart Day, Gavin Newlands MP visited The Oliver King Foundation at their launch event in Westminster to show his support.

The Oliver King Foundation was set up following the tragic death of 12-year-old Oliver King from a sudden cardiac arrest, which kills 12 young people every single week. Oliver was winning a swimming race at school.

In 2012 footballer Fabrice Muamba was shocked 16 times by a lifesaving defibrillator in front of the nation.

Early access to a defibrillator is vital. For every minute that passes, chances of survival drop by 10%.

Signing up to become a Defibrillator Champion for Renfrewshire, local MP Gavin Newlands, said:

“I am proud to become a lifesaving Defibrillator Champion for my local area. It is vital that we take action to prevent any loss of life where one can be saved. The Oliver King Foundation spoke to me about their desire that every school has access to lifesaving defibrillators.

“It was interesting to hear from the Foundation about how many lives have been saved, including a caretaker at a school who had only received the defibrillator two weeks earlier. I will be delighted to work as a Defibrillator Champion, as saving lives is a legacy that we can all be proud of.”

Jake Morrison, Chief Executive of The Oliver King Foundation said:

“We are delighted that Gavin Newlands MP has signed up as a Defibrillator Champion. It is important that we spread awareness of the vital need for this equipment in our communities. Our Members of Parliament have a great platform and connection in their constituencies to spread this message.

We look forward to working with Gavin and saving lives for years to come.”

Mark King, father of 12-year-old Oliver King who died from a sudden cardiac arrest said:

“5 years ago when my son Oliver passed away from this hidden heart condition, we didn’t know that his legacy would reach this far. We are determined to save as many young lives as possible, so that no other family has to suffer a similar loss to that of ours.”

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Clydesdale Bank closure – Gavin Newlands MP

Below is a quote from Gavin Newlands MP on the announcement that the Clydesdale Bank branch in Renfrew is due to be closed.

Gavin Newlands, MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, said:

“I am extremely frustrated and disappointed to learn that the Clydesdale Bank is planning on closing its Renfrew town centre branch. This bank has been based in the town for as many years that I can remember and is valued by local people. My immediate thoughts are with all those who work in the Clydesdale Bank Renfrew branch.

I’m angry as this is another local bank which is being closed in Renfrewshire. Over the past few years, we have witnessed a number of community banks being closed despite their importance to local people. This is not only a problem in Renfrewshire but across the UK where the number of bank branches has been decimated over the past few years. I have previously spoken on this in parliament and called on the UK Government to help maintain local banking.

I have contacted Clydesdale Bank to seek an urgent meeting on this closure in order to find out the reasons behind this decision and if anything can be done to reverse this disappointing decision.”