Candidates in Kilmarnock and Loudoun say they will campaign for higher wages if they are elected in the General Election next month. 

The region, which stretches from Kilmarnock to Mauchline and Auchinleck, will head to the ballot box on July 4 to choose the new MP for the area. 

The confirmed candidates for the constituency are the SNP's Alan Brown, Scottish Labour's Lillian Jones, Jordan Cowie for the Scottish Conservatives, Bex Glen for the Scottish Greens, Edward Thornley for the Scottish Liberal Democrats, William Thomson for Reform UK and independent Stephen McNamara. 

Alan Brown, the SNP incumbent, says he wants to kickstart the UK economy after a period of stagnation following Brexit and the pandemic. 

He said: "What I want to see is for the economy of the UK to grow. For too long it's been sluggish and a lot of that is to do with Brexit. 

"The UK is actually the second lowest GDP growth in the G7 since covid, and it's lower than the Eurozone overall. 

"We need to see that growth come back and be back in the single market. That's the problem when Labour and the Tories are denying that that's had an impact. 

"I want to see compensation for the WASPI woman, see the infected blood scandal sorted and higher wages.

"We need to see investment in infrastructure, and that will help grow the economy as well.

"Only strong SNP representation will actually make the government at Westminster think about these issues."

Lillian Jones of Scottish Labour says she wants to see bills lowered for households, and the introduction of a new nationalised energy provider. 

She explained: "I've spoken with thousands of local people who tell me they want change. They want money in their pockets, help with the cost of living crisis and secure work that pays. 

"Labour will not play fast and loose with the economy. We will deliver economic stability and demonstrate how this will lower your mortgage and reduce your household bills. 

"We will make work pay with a new deal for workers and deliver a genuine living wage restoring dignity and respect. 

"We will realise the ambition of Scotland's renewables by switching on GB Energy, headquartered in Scotland, creating thousands of jobs and lowering energy bills.

"On July 4, together we have an opportunity to vote for the change that Kilmarnock and Loudoun needs. Vote Scottish Labour."

Independent Stephen McNamara added: "I think with the economy, there's certainly a lot of issues, especially when it comes to the main parties.

"All of them will promise the world but the only thing every single one of them will deliver is more of the same.

"Ideally from a local level, we need to concentrate on just getting as many people into work, getting as many people into strong, good quality family and relationships.

"All these things benefit the economy at a local level and they certainly benefit the individuals I think is an independent candidate.

"Voting for myself, Stephen McNamara is a way to do it."

We reached out to all candidates for their views on the economy, and will be speaking to them on other key issues in the weeks leading up to the election.