SELECT’s campaign to legally protect the electrical trade gets backing from 32 more MSPs

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SELECT’s campaign to introduce more regulation in the electrical industry has received backing from 32 more members of the Scottish Parliament. That brings the total number of MSPs backing the regulation to 41. 

The organisation has been trying to win the support of Scottish politicians, in the hopes that they would introduce legislation to protect the electrical trade. SELECT wants to make it illegal for anyone that isn’t professionally trained to work with electrics to call themselves electricians. It warns that rogue traders could be putting the lives of millions at risk, and risk damaging the trust the public has in those working in the electrical trade. 

Of those already backing the regulation, SELECT has the support of the Scottish Joint Industry Board, Unite the Union, Electrical Safety First, The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, the Scottish Association of Landlords, the Specialist Engineering Contractors’ Group and the Energy Saving Trust. It has also signed up two former MPs, who are running for reelection in the upcoming general election, as well as nine other MSPs who had previously backed the plans.

SELECT managed to win over the 32 MSPs who have now indicated their support for the legislation thanks to an event the organisation put on at Holyrood. The exhibition was aimed at getting the message across to MSPs about how vitally important the legislation it is proposing actually is.

The lobbying appears to have worked, with the 32 MSPs coming from a wide variety of parties. 11 come from the Conservative party, nine from Labour, eight from the SNP, two from the Lib Dems and two from the Greens. The new list of MSPs backing the campaign is:

  • Jeremy Balfour (Conservatives, covering the Lothian region)

  • Michelle Ballantyne (Con, South Scotland)

  • Bill Bowman (Con, North East Scotland)

  • Maurice Corry (Con, West Scotland)

  • Murdo Fraser (Con, Mid Scotland and Fife)

  • Alison Harris (Con, Central Scotland)

  • Dean Lockhart (Con, Mid-Scotland and Fife)

  • Tom Mason (Con, North East Scotland)

  • Margaret Mitchell (Con, Central Scotland)

  • Edward Mountain (Con, Highlands and Islands)

  • Brian Whittle (Con, South Scotland)

  • Angela Constance (SNP, Lothian)

  • Bill Kidd (SNP, Glasgow Anniesland)

  • Richard Lyle (SNP, Uddingston and Bellshill)

  • Gordon MacDonald (SNP, Edinburgh Pentlands)

  • Stuart McMillan (SNP, West Scotland)

  • Gail Ross (SNP, Highlands and Islands)

  • David Torrance (SNP, Mid Scotland and Fife)

  • Maureen Watt (SNP, North East Scotland)

  • Claire Baker (Labour, Mid Scotland and Fife)

  • Mary Fee (Lab, West Scotland)

  • Neil Findlay (Lab, Lothian)

  • Iain Gray (Lab, South Scotland)

  • James Kelly (Lab, Glasgow Region)

  • Monica Lennon (Lab, Central Scotland)

  • Alex Rowley (Lab, Mid Scotland and Fife)

  • Elaine Smith (Lab, Coatbridge and Chryston)

  • Colin Smyth (Lab, South Scotland)

  • Mark McDonald (Liberal Democrats, Aberdeen Donside)

  • Beatrice Wishart (Lib Dem, Highlands  and Islands)

  • John Finnie (Green, Highlands and islands)

  • Patrick Harvie (Green, Glasgow)

Among the new supporters is Michelle Ballantyne, Conservative MSP for South Scotland, who said: “I am delighted to support this campaign because protecting title not only ensures standards and recognition in a profession, it provides reassurance and safety for the consumer.”

Ballantyne, who is also Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Social Security, added: “In an age where we are increasingly reliant on electricity we need to know that someone who calls themselves an electrician is indeed suitably qualified and is not going to put our life or the lives of those we are responsible for at risk through lack of training.”

SELECT Managing Director Alan Wilson, who attended the exhibition at Holyrood between November 12-14, said: “We are delighted at this continuing groundswell of support and would like to thank all these MSPs for backing our ongoing campaign to make electrician a regulated profession.

“The response from every party has been extremely encouraging and it’s heartening to see that improving safety for consumers across Scotland is a priority for our politicians, no matter their party allegiances.”