Ruth Maguire MSP has paid tribute to local volunteer groups and organisations for their role in providing support to their communities throughout the Covid-19 crisis.

Speaking in the Scottish Parliament, the SNP MSP noted that many organisations made up of dedicated volunteers have been working constantly to provide food, shopping and prescription services for people in need throughout Irvine.

The representative for Cunninghame South highlighted Fullarton Hub as an example of the community support which has been shown throughout the pandemic so far.

Ms Maguire said: “They are absolutely knocking their pans in, seven days a week. Fullarton and the other Hubs in North Ayrshire have stepped up and provided for the community.

They are at the heart of the community, they are the community and they know what is needed and the priority is Food and tackling isolation and they are delivering and have been since the start of this crisis.

They are also reaching folk who need support but have not been involved with statutory services, connections that can be literally lifesaving.”

Ms Maguire also noted that there is an opportunity to build on policy and practice which have been implemented during the pandemic to bring lasting change and tackle inequalities.

She noted the prevalence of inclusive information, remote working and dignified food provision, ideas which had been long campaigned for, as now mainstream policy suggestions. 

She said: “This health crisis has highlighted and, in many cases, exacerbated deep, existing inequalities, which have persisted stubbornly over decades.

“The harms caused by the pandemic and the harms of the measures put in place to manage it and save lives are not felt equally and Government responses should reflect that in making decisions.

“Fairness and quality of life for all our citizens must not only be considered but also acted upon.

“It will be to all our shame if these gains in inclusion and justice are lost.”

Ruth’s full contribution can be viewed below: