Time for Reflection: Rev Elsie Macrae, Minister, St Andrew’s Parish Church (linked with Kirkpatrick Juxta and Wamphray Parish Churches), Moffat followed by Topical Questions Siobhian Brown S6T-00183 1. To ask the Scottish Government what discussions it has had with the UK Government regarding lorry driver shortages and related fuel shortages. Sue Webber S6T-00184 2. To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to reports of staffing shortages at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital leading to health professionals warning about patient safety. Russell Findlay S6T-00195 3. To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to reports that staff shortages and a new criminal record system in Police Scotland are risking dangerous criminals being left on the streets. followed by First Minister’s Statement: COVID-19 Update followed by Scottish Government Debate: Keeping the Lifeline - A Call to Cancel the Cut to Universal Credit That the Parliament agrees, along with opposition parties in the UK Parliament, that the UK Government’s planned reduction to universal credit should be reversed; recognises the cross-party efforts of opposition parties in the UK Parliament and the social security committees of each of the four nations' parliaments and assembly in this aim; notes Scottish Government analysis that the reduction of universal credit could reduce welfare expenditure in Scotland by £461 million a year by 2023-24 and push 60,000 people, including 20,000 children, into poverty; agrees that the inadequacy of the payment is just one of many issues with universal credit, alongside the two-child cap and the abhorrent so-called "rape clause", the five-week wait for a first payment, the benefit sanctions regime and the so-called "bedroom tax"; believes that this reflects the UK Government’s uncompassionate approach to welfare, which has been challenged by opposition parties across the UK, and acknowledges Scotland’s human rights-based approach to social security. followed by Environmental Standards Scotland: Appointment of the Chief Executive That the Parliament welcomes the statutory vesting of Environmental Standards Scotland, the new environmental governance body for Scotland, which will ensure that high standards of environmental governance are maintained, and approves the Scottish Ministers’ appointment of Brendan Callaghan as the first chief executive of Environmental Standards Scotland, as required by the UK Withdrawal from the European Union (Continuity) (Scotland) Act 2021, and as communicated to the Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee by correspondence on 6 September 2021 by the Cabinet Secretary for Net Zero, Energy and Transport. followed by Decision Time followed by Members' Business — S6M-01136 Jamie Halcro Johnston: Ambulance Services Across Scotland That the Parliament commends the efforts of hard-working ambulance staff over the challenging period since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic; recognises what it sees as the importance of an effective ambulance service to rural communities and, in particular, to those remote communities in the Highlands and Islands region; considers that issues exist around staffing and recruiting of staff across Scotland; believes that a number of performance indicators for the Scottish Ambulance Service have been missed over this period, and acknowledges the view that there is a need for an effective strategic plan to support the Service to recover as Scotland emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic.
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