Orkney’s MSP Liam McArthur has today pressed amendments to the Children (Scotland) Bill as part of the first combined legislating session of the whole Parliament.
Commenting, Mr McArthur said:
“The silver lining of this pandemic is that it has pushed the boundaries of what we understand to be possible. Despite some minor hiccups, the vote on my amendment showed that Parliament’s business can be managed with members both in Edinburgh and in their constituencies.
“For all MSPs, there will continue to be a need to balance time spent in parliament with time spent in their constituencies or regions. Remote voting allows more flexibility in the way that balance can be struck and needs to become a hallmark of the Scottish Parliament into the future.”
And commenting on the amendments to the Children (Scotland) Bill won by Mr McArthur, he commented:
"When presented, this Bill was in danger of being a bundle of nice words, with little substance or the resources needed for delivery.
"Thankfully, the amendments made give greater confidence that it will now make a real difference to the lives and experiences of children growing up in Scotland.
"I am pleased to have secured support for changes that will protect the information shared by children on a confidential basis. I also welcome parliament's decision to back my amendment to guarantee access to child advocacy support.
"There is some way to go, but these and other provisions in this Bill bring Scotland a step closer to long-overdue compliance with the UN Corporation on the Rights of the Child. Now the Scottish Government have to get on with the remainder of that process."