My week focused heavily on the Good Food Nation Bill which progressed to Stage 2 this week. I had put amendments before the Rural Affairs and Natural Environment (RAINE) Committee to strengthen the bill, aiming for it to acknowledge a ‘Right to Food’, to help address prescriptive rules on school hostel meals and to support a framework to oversee the new measures the bill would put in place. Unfortunately of the 19 amendments I put forward all were voted down by the SNP and Green members of the Committee. I fear that we will not be able to adequately scrutinise legislation during this term of the Parliament if the Government Whip is strictly adhered to by nationalist coalition members.
On Tuesday I pressed the Scottish Government over what action it will take to provide support to new mothers who require a specialist mental health bed with their baby. The nearest mother and baby unit is in Livingston so anyone in the Highlands and Islands needing the specialist perinatal mental health treatment offered there would have to travel hundreds of miles to access it. That also causes practical problems for family and friends who want to support the patients, in terms of logistics and finance. I called on the Scottish Government for greater support for families involved in perinatal mental health provision and asked if the Scottish Government would look to increase the criteria and financial provision provided to families engaged in perinatal mental health services, especially those who live further from specialist services. You can watch my questions here.
I also took part in filming with Elect Her, an organisation working to increase women’s participation in politics. Councillor Emma Macdonald has done a lot of work with this organisation too and you can find out more about it here.
On Wednesday I took part in the Cross Party Group on Crofting, as well as attending an event celebrating 100 years of insulin. Diabetes is a condition that affects people of all ages and as we make great strides in treatment and management technologies we should not forget the serious mental and physical impact diabetes has on those living with the condition. Please find a link to Diabetes UK here.
I also met with constituents and attended local meetings this week. As ever if there is any matter you would like to raise with me please get in touch:
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 01595 690 044