By Luke Graham
Conservative candidate for Ochil and South Perthshire

Like many, it was the 2014 Scottish Referendum that brought me into frontline politics.

Having worked in industry for just under a decade and spent five years living and working in China and the USA, I wanted to return to the UK to play my part in the campaign to keep the Union together.

Following the No result, I believed we would move on, focusing on the important issues facing our country: education, the future of the NHS, infrastructure and getting more investment into our towns and villages.

Unfortunately, this hasn't happened. Instead of Scotland being stronger, we are now undeniably weaker than a few years ago; our economy contracted at the end of the last year while the rest of the UK grew.

Education, once the envy of the world, is now slipping behind England and Northern Ireland and our businesses are finding it harder and harder to attract investment to Scotland. I want to change this.

My priorities are, above all else, to oppose a second referendum and get on with the day job.

I will also aim to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour by pushing for more community policing and resist the further centralization of services through Police Scotland. This will include campaigning for better resourcing of rehabilitation schemes for low-level offenders.

In addition, I will encourage more investment to Clackmannanshire, especially into our towns and villages and work with all levels of government to secure more public funding for transport and digital infrastructure, including broadband.

I also want to review local bus provision, looking at both routes and journey times.

In terms of public services, I will work with colleagues in the Scottish Parliament to hold the Scottish Government to account on educational performance. We cannot afford Scotland to fall any further behind.

I will work to reinstate college spaces and promote lifelong learning and fight for NHS funding and reform, making sure care is free at the point of use, especially for those who need it most.

We also need to pressure both Westminster and Holyrood to prioritise mental health services, giving it equivalence to physical health.

I will aim to raise the profile of environmental issues across Ochil and South Perthshire, focusing on initiatives that will enhance sustainability and improve air quality.

My focus will not be on a second referendum, but on making sure we increase our influence in London and ensuring our voice is heard in the Brexit negotiations so we get a fair deal for Clackmannanshire, Scotland and the whole UK.

The next few years will be crucial for Ochil and South Perthshire. If elected, I will make sure our voice is heard in parliament, whilst never forgetting the everyday needs of constituents.

Polls show that the choice on June 8 in Ochil and South Perthshire is between the SNP and the Scottish Conservatives. I will work hard to win your vote, and if elected, will continue to work hard from June 9 onwards.