What’s going on at Scottish Liberal Democrat Conference today?

In the hall

Scottish Conference Saturday

The main business of the morning at Scottish Liberal Democrat Conference is a much longer than usual Party AGM. Normally, the business is concluded in half an hour, but it’s been scheduled for two hours so that Willie Rennie’s motion on diversity can be debated. The motion is accompanied by a constitutional amendment which requires a two-thirds majority to pass. The motion calls for wide-ranging measures, including limited use of all-women shortlists, ring-fenced funding for candidates from under-represented groups, a duty on party office holders to  drive forward diversity at all levels and numerous other measures to tackle diversity at every level. The Leader would be required to report to Conference twice a year on progress made. 

After what is expected to be a robust debate, the conference will discuss an emergency motion.

In the afternoon, we have debates on education and the Pre-Manifesto. Tim Farron will also give his keynote speech. He will also be speaking at the ASLDC AGM later. This has just been announced, so people who were hoping to slope off to the gin palace down the road might wish to put off their plans and listen to the leader instead.

On the fringe

Six fringe meetings take place today. I am speaking at the RNIB’s launch of their Holyrood manifesto which is chaired by former Glasgow MSP Robert Brown. The Royal College of Psychiatrists discuss children’s mental health. The Law Society Scotland looks at how Lib Dems want to use the Parliament’s new revenue raising powers, Inclusion Scotland talk about their new advice and support service for those seeking elected office and the Countryside Alliance discusses conservation and wildlife management. The final fringe is the afore-mentioned ASLDC AGM at which Tim Farron will be speaking.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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