Thursday 6 February
It was a pleasure highlighting the publication of the Independent Care Review in Parliament this week.
Driven by an unwavering focus on the voice of care experience, the Care Review demands the following changes:
The balance of power must be upended so that listening to children and young people is always the basis of all decisions made about their lives.
There must be a focus on building and maintaining life-long relationships – that includes a broader understanding of the risk of not having long term, loving relationships.
Scotland must parent, not process, children so there is no difference between the lives of children in care and their peers. Care experienced children must not miss out on the kind of childhood that many take for granted and the future that all our young people deserve.
Families must be kept together wherever it is safe to do so. Families must get the support that is right for them at the earliest opportunity and it must be flexible, consistent, patient and free from stigma. This will mean that more children can live a safe, happy life at home with their families.
You can read the report here https://www.carereview.scot/ and watch the First Ministers response to the report during a statement to Parliament here: https://www.scottishparliament.tv/meeting/ministerial-statements-february-5-2020
Do you have a view on Cosmetic Treatments? If you do and wants those views known you can take part in the Scottish Government consultation which is seeking views on the regulation of the industry.
The number of non-surgical cosmetic treatments being carried out across Scotland and the UK has risen considerably over the years and continues to do so. In Scotland, independent clinics run by a doctor, nurse, dentist, dental nurse, midwife or dental care professional and who provide these procedures are regulated by Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS). However non-surgical cosmetic procedures themselves, such as lip enhancement or dermal fillers, are not currently regulated and anyone is currently able to administer such procedures.
The Scottish Government’s vision is for a safer Scotland. They want to ensure that anyone providing non-surgical cosmetic procedures does so safely and is competent and appropriately trained to do so.
You can access the consultation here: https://www.gov.scot/binaries/content/documents/govscot/publications/consultation-paper/2020/01/consultation-regulation-independent-healthcare/documents/consultation-regulation-non-surgical-cosmetic-procedures-scotland/consultation-regulation-non-surgical-cosmetic-procedures-scotland/govscot%3Adocument/consultation-regulation-non-surgical-cosmetic-procedures-scotland.pdf
Members of the Cross Party Group on Women Against State Pension Increase (WASPI) met in Parliament this week to discuss how we can progress their campaign.
As Deputy Convener of the CPG I have been assisting those women who have essentially had their contract for their state pension ripped up and rewritten without any consultation or regard for individual circumstances.
I and many other colleagues have written to the UK Pensions Secretary and we keep getting the same response which is unacceptable. We will continue to fight for those 1950’s women affected by the UK Government changes.
Tens of thousands of businesses across Scotland will continue to benefit from vital business rates relief put in place by the Scottish Government.
MSPs voted to support the Non-Domestic Rates (Scotland) Bill at stage three, which will now be translated into legislation.
The bill will implement the changes to business rates recommended by the independent Barclay Review, such as three year revaluations and improved anti-avoidance and debt recovery powers for councils.
The vote removed a stage two amendment to devolve business rates to councils and abolish almost £300 million of rates relief.
It was great to catch up with staff from Hillhead High School when they were in Parliament this week as part of the Sported Reception.
Sported were established to assist those people working everyday to improve the lives of young people and tackle the problems that matter in their community.
The reception provided an opportunity for MSPs to join Sported in celebration of community sport-for-change heroes, who use sport to turn young lives around in Scotland and to meet their member groups, their young people, together with their volunteer business mentors.
You can find out more about Sported here: https://sported.org.uk/
Whistleblowing Champions have been appointed to health boards across Scotland in a move aimed at creating a more honest and open workplace culture within the NHS.
A total of 19 appointments have been made by Health Secretary Jeane Freeman, with them all taking up their posts from this week.
The Whistleblowing Champion role builds on existing support in place for whistleblowers within the NHS.
The introduction of these roles form part of a wider package of measures which will further strengthen and enhance the current policy architecture in NHS Scotland.
Representatives from The Big Lunch were in Parliament this week to chat about how they are helping communities to connect.
The Big Lunch is an annual get together where people from across the country come can together for a few hours to meet, greet, share, swap, sing, plan and laugh with their neighbours. Last year, 40,000 people in Scotland took part.
For more information go to: https://www.edenprojectcommunities.com/thebiglunchhomepage