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Meeting of the Parliament

Thursday 28 April 2005

Note: (DT) signifies a decision taken at Decision Time.

The meeting opened at 9.15 am.

  1. Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Bill: The Minister for Health and Community Care (Mr Andy Kerr) moved S2M-2667—That the Parliament agrees to the general principles of the Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Bill.

Carolyn Leckie moved amendment S2M-2667.1 to motion S2M-2667—

Insert at end—

“but, in doing so, believes that the Scottish Executive’s pursuit of further privatisation in the form of joint ventures in section 31 of the Bill compromises the general benefits to health from the Bill and potentially undermines cross-party support for the passage of the Bill.”

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 9, Against 75, Abstentions 17).

The motion was then agreed to ((DT) by division: For 83, Against 15, Abstentions 3).

  1. Question Time: General Questions were answered by Scottish Ministers and junior Scottish Ministers.

  2. First Minister’s Question Time: Questions were answered by the First Minister (Mr Jack McConnell).

  3. Question Time: Questions on Environment and Rural Development, and on Health and Community Care were answered by Scottish Ministers and junior Scottish Ministers.

  4. Supporting Safer, Stronger Communities: Reform of Scotland’s Criminal Justice Services: The Minister for Justice (Cathy Jamieson) moved S2M-2736—That the Parliament believes that building safer, stronger communities is vital for Scotland’s well-being and future success; supports the reform package set out in the Criminal Justice Plan to promote the swifter delivery of sentences that are effective in reducing reoffending and supporting rehabilitation; recognises that violence, particularly knife crime, damages the daily life of already disadvantaged communities, and believes that co-ordinated action to tackle violence and knife crime must be stepped up in communities across Scotland.

Mr Kenny MacAskill moved amendment S2M-2736.2 to motion S2M-2736—

Insert at end—

“and recognises the need for individuals to accept greater responsibility for their actions and the consequences thereof as well as their own role in criminal justice, from reporting crime to participating in jury service, and equally for the Scottish Executive to recognise its own responsibility to all communities in Scotland and address the problems of drink, drugs and deprivation that lie at the root of much desperation and crime.”

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 24, Against 78, Abstentions 0).

Miss Annabel Goldie moved amendment S2M-2736.1 to motion S2M-2736—

Leave out from first “believes” to end and insert—

“notes the unacceptable rate of reoffending occurring in Scotland today; accepts that there is a place in our criminal justice system for a range of different sentencing options to address this problem but recognises that when a prison sentence is the appropriate disposal, then prison is not simply a punishment but is intended to rehabilitate, deter and protect the public; believes that the way to reduce reoffending and subsequently the prison population is to reduce the overall incidence of crime in Scotland, and therefore calls on the Scottish Executive to increase the police presence in our communities to deter and detect crime and to end automatic early release from our prisons to ensure honesty in sentencing”.

After debate, the amendment was disagreed to ((DT) by division: For 15, Against 87, Abstentions 0).

The motion was then agreed to (DT).

  1. Approval of SSI: Ms Margaret Curran, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, moved S2M-2731—That the Parliament agrees that the Food Protection (Emergency Prohibitions) (Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning) (West Coast) (No.3) (Scotland) Order 2005 (SSI 2005/208) be approved.

After debate, the motion was agreed to ((DT) by division: For 66, Against 18, Abstentions 17).

  1. Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Bill: Financial Resolution: The Deputy Minister for Health and Community Care (Rhona Brankin) moved S2M-2284—That the Parliament , for the purposes of any Act of the Scottish Parliament resulting from the Smoking, Health and Social Care (Scotland) Bill, agrees to any expenditure or increase in expenditure of a kind referred to in Rule 9.12.3(b)(ii) or (iii) of the Parliament’s Standing Orders arising in consequence of the Act.

The motion was agreed to ((DT) by division: For 83, Against 0, Abstentions 18).

  1. Decision Time: The Parliament took decisions on items 1, 5, 6 and 7 as noted above.

  2. Reviewing Arrangements for Managing Sex Offenders: The Parliament debated S2M-2573 in the name of Paul Martin—That the Parliament recognises that, following the murder of eight-year-old Mark Cummings by registered sex offender, Stuart Leggate, there is a requirement for a root-and-branch review of how registered sex offenders are monitored and managed in the community; believes that the current sentencing policy for dealing with registered child sex offenders is grossly inadequate and requires review, that it is not acceptable that registered sex offenders are able to legally act under an alias identity and that the current housing allocation policies for dealing with registered child sex offenders present a serious risk to local communities; considers that an inquiry should be held into the events leading up to the murder of Mark Cummings; believes that the Scottish Executive should, as a matter of urgency, bring forward measures that will ensure that the risk to our children posed by registered child sex offenders is radically minimised, and commends the News of the World for its campaign in raising the awareness of the need to introduce legislation to manage registered sex offenders more effectively.

The meeting closed at 5.56 pm .

P E Grice
Clerk of the Parliament
28 April 2005

Appendix
(Note: this Appendix does not form part of the Minutes)

Committee Reports

The following reports were published on 28 April 2005—

Subordinate Legislation Committee, 16th Report, 2005 (Session 2): Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 331)

Environment and Rural Development Committee, 4th Report, 2005 (Session 2): Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 332)

Communities Committee, 3rd Report, 2005 (Session 2): Report on Subordinate Legislation (SP Paper 333)