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by Tom Freeman
01 May 2019
Labour veteran Sarah Boyack to take Kezia Dugdale’s seat at Holyrood

Sarah Boyack - Scottish Parliament

Labour veteran Sarah Boyack to take Kezia Dugdale’s seat at Holyrood

Scottish Labour have confirmed Sarah Boyack will take the Lothians region seat vacated by Kezia Dugdale this summer.

Boyack, one of the original MSP intake in 1999, lost her seat at the 2016 election and was the next unelected candidate on Labour’s Lothians list.

She will take her seat at the start of the next session after Dugdale leaves to take an academic position at the University of Glasgow.

The former minister for the environment, planning and transport said she has “unfinished business” in tackling poverty and climate change.

Boyack will resign from her position as head of public affairs at the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA) to return to parliament.

Boyack said: “I’ve had the privilege to have worked with SFHA, its members and stakeholders for the last two years and have seen the impact both of the Scottish Parliament in framing the work they do and their day in day out support for communities and the affordable, safe and secure homes that they provide for tenants.

“However, there is unfinished business for me.  In the last three years the case for concerted action on climate change and the need to redouble our efforts to tackle poverty has accelerated.

“In Edinburgh, the affordable, accessible housing people need has become harder and harder to secure.  And then there’s the uncertainty and division caused by Brexit.

“These are huge challenges and I’d relish the opportunity to serve in the Scottish Parliament. Finally, I’d want to pay tribute to the hard work of Kez and her team in the Lothians.”

Boyack stood against Jim Murphy for the leadership of Scottish Labour in 2014, and was third on the regional list in 2016 after Kezia Dugdale and Neil Findlay.

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