What’s on in our Parliaments this week?

Scottish Parliament 3What are our MPs, MSPs and AM’s going to be talking about this coming week?


It’s the last week of term for the Scottish Parliament this week until an earlier than usual return, on 3 August. MSPs will sit for 3 weeks before taking a further 4 week break for the Referendum.

One of the last items to be discussed in the Chamber this session will be a motion from Liberal Democrat MSP Alison McInnes, not on her usual justice portfolio, but on the BMA’s Your GP cares campaign. Her motion reads:

That the Parliament notes the launch of the Your GP Cares campaign by the British Medical Association (BMA) Scotland; considers that this new campaign highlights that GPs are facing unsustainable pressures, with larger patient lists and growing demand for their services for reasons including demographic changes and the increasing prevalence of more complex health needs; notes that the campaign is calling for sustainable investment in GP services to attract, retain and expand GP numbers, strengthen the practice staff team and ensure that all GP premises are fit for purpose; is concerned that some GP practices in the North East region, already possessing patient lists that are among the largest in Scotland, are ill-equipped to serve communities with burgeoning populations; commends what it considers the outstanding work of GPs across Scotland; believes that they will become even more important to their patients with the shift to delivering preventative care and the integration of health and social care services, and considers it essential that they have the capability to respond to local needs and meet the demands placed on them.

The Parliament will be discussing unemployment, youth employment, housing and support for Armed Forces and veteran communities.

At Thursday’s First Minister’s Questions, which is not much better than its Westminster counterpart, the pro-UK leaders will be hoping to land a convincing anti independence punch. Actually, here’s an idea, how about forgetting independence and going on one of his government’s many failings in either education or justice. While everyone is focused on the Constitution, too much is escaping scrutiny. Salmond is being paid to run the country, you know.

The Senedd

Plenary debates this week take place on legislative consent for the Deregulation Bill being discussed by the UK Parliament and the Housing (Wales) Bill. The Conservatives use their opposition day to discuss junk mail and support for veterans. Plaid Cymru uses its session to talk up the Welsh team for the Commonwealth Games and encourage more participation in sport.


There’s some really interesting Westminster Hall debates coming up this week on subjects such as  human rights in Saudi Arabia, job creation in developing countries and gender equality in parliaments and political corruption overseas. Three Liberal Democrats have slots: John Pugh’s on planning and out of town supermarket expansion; David Ward on the situation in Burma and Sir Bob Russell on the Inclusion of the North American War of 1812-14 in the school curriculum.

On the floor of the House, alongside the usual programme of questions, we have deliberation of the Deregulation Bill, the Wales Bill, an opposition day debate at which Labour plan to discuss the private rented sector and a debate on the commemorations of the 100th Anniversary of the start of the First World War.

Adjournment debates take place on the treatment of eating disorders in the North East, sharia compliant student loans, cycle safety around buses and shop closures in South Shields.

The Lords also debate the First World War commemorations and the Armed Services complaints bill gets its second reading. They discuss the constitutional implications of the Scottish referendum on independence, protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse, the role of charities and the teaching of British values in schools.

I’m particularly interested in hearing the answers to questions on the interim review on the Bedrrom Tax, delays on Personal Independence Payments,  and on mental health.

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This entry was posted in Op-eds and Parliament.

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