Scottish Labour Leader Kezia Dugdale MSP has announced her new front bench team. In a break from the past, appointments are not being made to “shadow” the current cabinet, but instead spokespeople have been appointed according to Labour values and priorities.
At the Punjabi Junction Cafe in Edinburgh this morning, Kezia said:
“The role of my front bench team will be to communicate Labour values. Too often people tell us they don’t know what Labour stands for. Under my leadership there will be no doubt about what we stand for and who we stand with. The job titles of my front bench team are part of that.
I want a Scotland where power, wealth and opportunity are in the hands of the many, not the few. I want a country where a young person’s ability to get on in life is determined by their potential, work rate and ambition, not by their background.
The idea of simply shadowing government ministers is outdated. Of course we must hold the SNP Government to account for its failings on schools, our NHS and policing – and we will do that.
But I want to shake things up and have a fresh start. We need to be out and about across Scotland. The key focus of every single member of my front bench team will be setting out a positive Labour vision of transforming Scotland.”
The new front bench team, which is gender balanced, is as follows:
Kezia Dugdale: Leader
Alex Rowley: Deputy Leader
Jenny Marra: Equality Spokesperson (Health, equalities, welfare, care and social inclusion)
Iain Gray: Opportunity Spokesperson (Schools, childcare, skills, lifelong learning, sport, science and workplace issues)
Graeme Pearson Justice Spokesperson (Justice and policing)
Jackie Baillie Public Services and Wealth Creation Spokesperson (Finance, infrastructure, business, delivery of public services and tourism)
Ken Macintosh Community Spokesperson (Housing, local government, cities, planning and island communities)
Sarah Boyack Environmental Justice Spokesperson (Transport, environment and rural affairs, land reform, climate change and energy including oil and gas)
Claire Baker Democracy Spokesperson (Constitution, Europe, culture and power in society)
Mary Fee Reform Spokesperson (Party and parliamentary reform)
James Kelly Business Manager (Parliamentary business)
Neil Bibby Chief Whip (Parliamentary business)