Socialist Worker

Voices from Glenrothes: ‘That bailout money could do so much around here’

Issue No. 2124

With official inflation running at over 5 percent, many people in Glenrothes who spoke to Socialist Worker are clear that the government is more interested in saving banks than in helping ordinary people.

In the Kingdom Shopping Centre, disabled pensioner Mary Monk said she’s noticed how all the shops seem to have more buy-one-get-one-free offers.

“It’s because no one has any money to spend,” she said. “They’ll have to bring the prices down soon – they’re not selling enough of their things.

“My electricity bill went up in August,” the 70-year-old said, “I only found out about it in October. It’s not right.”

Mary’s carer, Beverley Bernard, added, “The price rises are a disgrace. Everything costs more now.”

She said most people she knows probably won’t vote at all.

“All politicians are the same. People just have to try to look after themselves.”

A 43-year-old shopping centre worker, who didn’t want to be named, said, “This bank thing is outrageous.

“That money could do so much around here for the community.”

She pointed out that even things like cooking oil had doubled in price just in the last few months.

“I normally vote Labour but I’m not voting for anyone this time. I don’t know if the SNP will win and I don’t really care,” she said.

Three young people outside the centre said there’s nothing for teenagers in the town.

“We’re always bored out of our skulls,” one of them said. “No one gives a shit about us. And my mum said she can’t buy the same stuff anymore cos it’s too dear now.”

An older girl asked, “When is the election?

She added, “I hope Alex Salmond wins because Gordon Brown gave all that cash to the banks.

“Why is that okay? They’re already rich. Why are banks being helped?”

Sheraz Raja, who helps run the Clockshop newsagent in nearby Thornton, said that she had noticed the recession beginning to bite.

“Guys in the building trade who come in used to spend, say, about £20 in here. Now it’s about £15 on average.

“A few of them are losing shifts so they don’t have as much money to spend.”

Sheraz added, “I’m voting SNP because they’re not Labour.”

Solidarity is standing Louise McLeary as its candidate in Glenrothes. She lives in the constituency and has already been out with local supporters campaigning to take a socialist message onto the streets and doorsteps in the area.

Louise has been active in the area over many issues, including the campaign against Fife council’s increased homecare charges.

Solidarity has also selected Unite union steward Willie Black to stand in the Forth ward council by-election in Edinburgh.

For more information or to help with either of the campaigns, go to »

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