Local Ayr, Carrick & Cumnock Conservative candidate Lee Lyons made an impassioned call for more foster carers at the annual Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party conference held in Edinburgh his week.
Lee, who is a foster carer himself with his partner Linda, told conference of the joy he has had over the last decade in bringing up foster children, many of whom came from underprivileged and disruptive family backgrounds.
His call follows recent figures released by The Foster Network that show there is a need for over 8,000 foster carers across the United Kingdom with 750 of those required in Scotland.
He told the conference that: “Many of us hear of statistics like these and watch debates about this and feel that we can’t do anything about it, but we can. It’s important that we do act because the more children that are placed in safe, loving, nurturing and supportive environments, the more likely it is that the attainment gap will be wiped out forever”.
Following his speech, Lee added: “More and more foster carers are leaving the profession because of low or no pay and a lack of vital information about foster children being shared between local authorities and carers. Today I’ve urged the Scottish Conservatives to be the leading force for foster carers in Scotland and will continue to campaign on this issue as it is very important to me and the thousands of other dedicated people who work hard to make the lives of children better”.