Soryia shares her story ….

Born and bred in Glasgow, my parents originate from Pakistan. Parents immigrated to Scotland and choose to live in Glasgow in the 70’s.  Initially they intended to stay short term. However, they fell in love with Glasgow and decided to stay. They had a family, built their home and life together and worked towards a positive community.

Many immigrants aspire for a better life and a sense of belonging, having left behind familiar surroundings and in some cases fleeing persecution.  They worked extremely hard and aspired for a better life for themselves and their children.  They faced many challenges, including language, weather and an initially a sense of loneliness of leaving loved ones behind. However, they embraced change, worked as individuals and as a community building their life together.

It wasn’t long before Glasgow became home, where they brought up their children, nurturing them to live a positive fulfilling life.  They instilled a sense of responsibility, an aspiration to become a positive contribution – the basis of which was built on education.

Having lived in a multicultural community it was nice to live in streets where everyone looked out for each other. Mums took turns to baby sit, collect each other’s children from nursery and schools. We looked out for the elderly,vulnerable, respected our peers and authority.

Growing up in Glasgow I have experienced the regeneration of our city. This ranged from external and internal renovation of tenement buildings, building of new homes and schools, increasing range of shopping centres, shops and choice of restaurants.

The same street I grew up in is now unrecognisable. Labour council regeneration of Glasgow has modernised and uplifted Glasgow as a multicultural, vibrant and trendy city and wonthe Commonwealth games.  You don’t have to go far in the UK to hear Glasgow described as great for shopping, eating out and generally a friendly city coupled with eye catching architecture. As much as I enjoy travelling, it is always great to come back home.

My passion for making a difference inspired me to join the Labour party. A member of Labour party for nearly ten years, having taken part in Scottish and National campaigns has inspired me to stand for Council. Glasgow is a diverse city facing the challenges of Scottish Government budget cuts. Having experienced the effect of the resulting cuts as inindividual, in the class room, further education and our city has prompted me to enhance my grassroots political involvement.

Southside central is a diverse community, rich in language and culture. There are many challenges and potential to make a positive difference to people’s lives.

Labour has big plans for Glasgow, pledging up to 5 months extra childcare for children. At the moment, parents have towait until their children are 3 and then they get free nurserycare at the start of the following term. Under Labour’s plan, children will get 15hrs a week of free childcare at the term in which they turn 3. That change means up to 5 months extra childcare for every child born in our city.

Labour has rebuilt every secondary school in the city – and now we will start on the primaries. Every one will be brought up to scratch within five years.

Labour’s Glasgow Guarantee means that every 16-24 year old in the city will be guaranteed an apprenticeship, a job, or training, with 1000 jobs each year for apprentices, graduates and the over 50s.

Labour will build 3,500 new homes for rent in Glasgow, by allowing housing associations to lease unused land in the city. Labour will also guarantee mortgage deposits to city residents wanting to get on the housing ladder, who can afford the repayments, but have trouble putting down the massive deposits often needed now.

The Tories have cut back the winter fuel allowance for anyone aged 80 – but Labour have brought it back via the council. That means every person living in Glasgow aged 80 will get £100 from the council every winter for the next five years.

Labour will have a dog fouling warden in every ward, with the power to order clean-ups and clamp down on persistent offenders. Also backing a new, green vision for the city – including bidding for Glasgow to become the first city in the UK to be made the European Green Capital

I would love the opportunity to join you in making a difference to our streets, backcourts, roads, housing and keeping Southside Central green and clean. I would like to hear what issues matter to you.

Follow me on twitter:  @Soryia

Facebook: Soryia Siddique

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