LABOUR leader Keir Starmer has said it will be a "joint effort" to regain trust in his party with the Scottish electorate.

Speaking to the Herald, Mr Starmer acknowledged it was not solely up to Scottish Labour to win back lost Scottish votes.

The former director of public prosecutions, speaking after an online listening event in the shamed MP Margaret Ferrier's constituency, also said he had learned that Scots needed to feel as if they mattered to his party again.

Starmer said:" I'd say certainly the strong themes for me as leader the Labour Party... people come to me wanting a reassurance that Scotland matters to the Labour Party.

"It's pretty important stuff about emotional connection...Does Scotland really matter to you?

READ MORE: Labour's Richard Leonard launches petition for Margaret Ferrier's resignation

"The answer is yes, absolutely. It's central to everything I want to achieve as the Labour Party."

The leader of the opposition said he was also hearing that Scots wanted to be listened to, and not " listening to what Westminster, is saying [to us]."

He explained: "[That is] very very strongly coming through.

"There is a genuine sense that I feel that people have of wanting power,control, influence to be closer to them. [which] I think can be achieved, that should be achieved, but without breaking up the union."

When asked whether he had been concerned about the recent attempts to oust Richard Leonard as leader of Scottish Labour, Mr Starmer said: " We've indulged in too much factionalism in the Labour Party across the United Kingdom, and we have to unite and pull together. Because as I said on the call divided parties don't win elections and it's our responsibility therefore to come together as one team, and to set out our strategic objectives for going into that May election."

He said it was a "joint responsibility", adding: " I was up in Scotland a few weeks ago with Richard Leonard planning out how we're going to run into the May election which obviously matters hugely to us, you know, "Richard and I, Scottish Labour and Labour, know that we have got to rebuild trust in Scotland.

"We've got to rebuild that trust across the United Kingdom, particularly in Scotland. There's a job of work to do and it's very much a joint responsibility."

During the online Call Keir session yesterday, the Labour leader said he was "not impressed" by the handling of the coronavirus pandemic in Scotland, or of the conduct of MP Margaret Ferrier, who has refused to resign.

READ MORE: Keir Starmer calls on Scottish Labour to 'pull together' and restore trust

He told participants: " Margaret Ferrier has let her constituents down badly because the person that they put their trust in as their MP has behaved in the way that they have. "

He added: "When I looked at what's happened in Scotland in relation to dealing with COVID-19. I'm not impressed, I don't think it's been handled well. The infection rate is high in Scotland. Obviously the few restrictions now this afternoon, that are coming. I don't think they were inevitable. I don't think we should ever accept that they were inevitable."