Skye MSP Kate Forbes has today (Tuesday 8th February) announced that she and her husband Ali MacLennan are expecting their first child in the summer.
The couple wed last summer in Dingwall and have three teenage daughters Rachael, Rebekah and Zara.
The announcement means that the member for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch will likely become the first-ever serving Cabinet Secretary to go on maternity leave.
Kate will take a break from Holyrood, but has reassured constituents that her constituency office and team will continue supporting local residents throughout that period as normal.
Kate Forbes MSP said: “My husband Ali and I are absolutely delighted to announce that we are expecting a baby later this year.
“All being well, we’re looking forward to welcoming a new member of the family in the summer.
“We have been incredibly grateful for the kind messages of support from family, friends, constituents and colleagues.
“In the meantime, I have a very busy few months ahead including the final stage of the Budget this week and supporting people through the cost of living crisis.
“I will be taking maternity leave when the baby arrives – but I want to reassure constituents that my office will remain open, and my constituency team will continue to provide help and support, as usual, to the residents of Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch.”
Kate Forbes was first elected to the Scottish Parliament in 2016, and was re-elected in May 2021, polling more than 24,000 votes – 15,000 more than nearest challenger, Conservative candidate Jamie Halcro Johnstone.
In February 2020, Ms Forbes took over the position as Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Economy, becoming not only the youngest politician to deliver a Scottish Budget since devolution, at just 29 years old, but also the first woman to do so in either the Scottish or UK Parliament.
“I have an even deeper admiration for the thousands of women across the country who balance both work and personal responsibilities,” she added.
“There might be particular challenges with being a politician in the public eye, whilst combating the side effects of pregnancy, but it is an experience which is familiar to countless women.
“Politics, like many workplaces, is not renowned for being a supportive environment for parents. Hopefully I can play a small part in changing that, and demonstrating that it is possible to have children and a career, with the right support in place.”
Constituents can continue to contact Kate’s constituency office team by the usual arrangements, either by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or phoning 01349 863 888.