News & Articles

Some published articles and blog posts from Tommy Sheppard MP

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Media Articles, Radio, TV

Negative EU campaign is just not my cup of tea

Negative EU campaign is just not my cup of tea

We need to look at the big picture and avoid scaremongering tactics in the run-up to the June referendum, says Tommy Sheppard

With the Scottish election out of the way, the political focus turns to the referendum about whether to leave or remain part of the EU. I’m voting to stay, warts and all.

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Corbyn urged to get behind Westminster voting change

Corbyn urged to get behind Westminster voting change

JEREMY Corbyn is under pressure to back the scrapping of the UK’s controversial first-past-the-post electoral system as the SNP claimed it gives the Tories “free reign” to make massive cuts to public services north and south of the Border.

SNP MP Tommy Sheppard said the Labour leader should commit to replacing the system, which allowed David Cameron to win an overall majority in the Commons despite polling just under 37 per cent of the vote in last year’s General Election.

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IDS is gone, but ethos behind Budget remains

IDS is gone, but ethos behind Budget remains

 

George Osborne’s policy is all about a long-term political plan for himself, not the country, says Tommy Sheppard

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Airbnb website under pressure to remove holiday listings in the Occupied Palestinian Territories

Tommy Sheppard, the SNP MP for Edinburgh East, is among those who have written to the chief executive of the Californian-based online company. He’s pointed out that the Israeli settlements where the homes are situated are illegal under international law.

“It is of deep concern that a company such as yours that prides itself as being a community, is showing such disregard for the communities in the Occupied Territories who are seeing their homes demolished for Israeli settlements to be built,” he wrote to Airbnb chief executive Brian Chesky.

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Hunt challenged over junior doctors being lured from NHS to do fitness for work tests for DWP

Hunt challenged over junior doctors being lured from NHS to do fitness for work tests for DWP

SNP MP Tommy Sheppard has challenged UK health secretary Jeremy Hunt to explain why the Department for Work and Pensions’ (DWP) fitness for work test provider was using taxpayers’ money to entice frontline junior doctors away from the NHS with a massive salary.

Sheppard confronted Jeremy Hunt in the Commons yesterday over the fact that Maximus was offering £72,000 a year – significantly more than that paid to NHS junior doctors – to carry out controversial work capability assessments (WCA).

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DWP
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The necessity of reinstating post-study work visas for international students

The necessity of reinstating post-study work visas for international students

Edinburgh MP Tommy Sheppard is working with the University of Edinburgh to urge the UK Home Office to reinstate a post-study work scheme for international students.

Scottish universities, including The University of Edinburgh and several Scottish government officials have warned against the tangible effects of removing post-study work schemes.

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Labour can only reclaim power in Scotland if the SNP f***s it up

Labour can only reclaim power in Scotland if the SNP f***s it up

 

Tommy Sheppard has a bee in his bonnet. The SNP MP for Edinburgh East is sat in his cramped parliamentary office, busy reeling off a series of gripes he harbours with Westminster.

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Tourist tax scheme is an open and shut suitcase

Tourist tax scheme is an open and shut suitcase

Edinburgh should have a tourist tax. A small levy on the hotel bill for visitors would help pay the cost of keeping our magnificent capital city going.

The city attracts around four million visitors per year. In 2014, there were 5.8 million bed nights in Edinburgh hotels (2.3 million domestic tourists and 3.5 million overseas tourists). Even if these were in shared rooms we’re talking nearly three million hotel rooms a year (not including B&Bs). If there was an average £2 levy on the cost of a hotel room (a modest two per cent of a £100 room), that would bring in at least £6 million a year – and that’s probably a serious underestimate.

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MP backs uni over rules which stop graduates staying

MP backs uni over rules which stop graduates staying

City MP Tommy Sheppard has backed a call by Edinburgh University for the reintroduction of post-study work visas to allow overseas students to stay and contribute to the Scottish economy for two years after they graduate.Read the full article in the Edinburgh Evening News 

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We Need to Debate BDS

We Need to Debate BDS

MP Tommy Sheppard has backed a targeted consumer boycott campaign to oppose the occupation of Palestine by Israel and to push for a fresh peace settlement.

Sheppard, the MP for Edinburgh East, said he “generally supports the BDS campaign” with a boycott focus on arms used in human rights abuses alongside goods produced from illegal settlements.

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Press Release: Pushing Cameron on Women's Pensions

Press Release: Pushing Cameron on Women's Pensions

 

Press Release: 15th January 2016

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A generation of women cheated out of pension

A generation of women cheated out of pension

Last week in parliament we debated how to equalise the state pension age for men and women. The UK Government’s dreadful handling of this change has been very unfair to women born between April 6, 1951 and the early 1960s – with those born in the mid-50s worst affected. Not only is their retirement age being raised to 66, but it’s happening over a very short period of time.Read the full article in the Edinburgh Evening News

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World at One

World at One

Tommy was back on the World at One after PMQs, discussing the day's news.

Catch up on the iplayer

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Pride and Pantomime in House of Commons

Pride and Pantomime in House of Commons

‘Are you enjoying it?’ is the most common question I get asked about being an MP. It’s not the verb I’d choose. But I’ve been a political activist of one kind or another for 40 years so being able to do it full-time and get paid for it is certainly a privilege.Read the full article in the Scotland on Sunday

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Daily Politics

Tommy make his first trip to the studio for Daily Politics - topics covered included the EU Referendum, Labour Party reshuffle and the 2016 elections.

Catch up on the BBC iplayer

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World at One

World at One

Reflections on PMQs and what do you buy the party leaders for Christmas?!

Listen to the story on World at One 

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SNP on Westminster Hour

SNP on Westminster Hour

The SNP is the UK's third party and a major force at Westminster. Gary Connor talks to Scottish Nationalist MPs about their role, and hears of their approach to Middle England.

Listen to the story on Westminster Hour broadcast on Sunday 13th December 2015

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Press Release: SNP and Labour Join Forces in Alternative FOI Review

Press Release: SNP and Labour Join Forces in Alternative FOI Review

Press Release: 14th December

Tommy Sheppard, SNP spokesperson for the cabinet office, has joined forces with Tom Watson, deputy leader of the Labour party to gather evidence as part of a cross party review into the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

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Press Release: 590 suicides related to Work Capability Assessments

Press Release: 590 suicides related to Work Capability Assessments

Press Release: 7th December 2015

Local MP questions DWP on report that 590 suicides related to Work Capability Assessments

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Tommy's Blog Articles

Tommy Sheppard
23 November 2018
Tommy's Blog
It’s been a little while since I've written a blog on Brexit. Things are now moving quite quickly so I thought it might be helpful for me to share a few of my thoughts on where we are.The proposal put forward by Theresa May last week is not a good one and not one I can support. While the SNP Scottish government remain of the view that the best option for Scotland would be to remain in the European...
Tommy Sheppard
08 November 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media
The budget was last week. Did you notice? As squibs go, this one was pretty damp. We’ll be debating the detail in the finance bill next week but the real story is one of indifference and missed opportunity.Since the 2008 crash, governments across the western world have seen their revenues unable to meet spending. In the US and most European countries the response was to use the power and funds of ...
Tommy Sheppard
11 October 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media
We were supposed to set off from Johnston Terrace at one o’clock on last Saturday’s march for independence. In fact, it was a quarter past two by the time I turned into the Lawnmarket and began the walk down the Royal Mile to Holyrood.That’s what happens when the biggest gathering in years descends upon the centre of Edinburgh and parades through narrow medieval streets. As a popular tweet quipped...
Tommy Sheppard
13 September 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media

Going back to Westminster after the summer recess you can almost feel the impending doom in the air. It’s the calm before the storm. Everyone knows something bad is going to happen. Just not what exactly. Like waiting for the ghoul to reveal itself in a horror movie.

And as the dread unfolds the discussion about whether there should be another Brexit referendum will intensify.

Tommy Sheppard
16 August 2018
Tommy's Blog
Media
How’s your festival going? Are you thrilled to bits at the world’s largest arts festival being on your doorstep? Are you overdosing on culture in one of the 200+ festival venues? Or do you spend August grimacing as it takes twice as long to get anywhere and the city centre is taken over by hordes of impossibly enthusiastic young people.Whatever your view on the summer festivals there’s no doubt th...