First Minister's Questions - 22 February 2018
We. Turn now to First Minister's Questions question, number one Ruth Davidson, Thank. You presiding officer, earlier, today killer, Robbie McIntosh was. Sentenced. For the attempted murder of Linda MacDonald in Dundee a crime. Committed, while he was on home leave awaiting. Parole does. The First Minister agree with me that this appalling case raises further questions, about our justice system and why killers who should be in jail are, instead allowed to walk free before. A parole board has even, ruled that they are safe to do so, First. Minister, well. Davidson, is a, very important issue the, case that, she raises, today is extremely. Distressing. And my thoughts I'm sure the thoughts of all of us are with the victim of what, was a horrific attack. Obviously. I cannot, comment, directly on, the decision the court has taken on sentencing. However I can confirm in factual, terms what, the sentence handed down today means, that, Robbie McIntosh has, today, been given an order for life long restriction. That means he will not be considered for release until he has served the, punishment, part of a sentence after, that consideration, of release would be a matter for the parole board for Scotland any decision, would be made on the basis of the need to protect the public but, if Robbie McIntosh were. To be released at any point in the future he, will be subject to intensive. Supervision for. The rest of his, life in, terms of the, issue of home. Leave, as, Ruth Davison will, be aware a system, of home leave has existed. For life sentence prisoners, for, many many, years, it, is a well-established part, of the rehabilitation, process a regulation. Risk assessment, is undertaken, by the Scottish Prison centres before any offender, is granted any form, of an escorted, leave, that involves psychological, assessment Social Work reports, and, reports on the time they've spent in prison home leave is also always granted, with very strict conditions applied. In terms of its application to, this case which I understand, raises, concerns, the Scottish Prison Service has, undertaken, an incident, review that, has considered all stages of the individual's progression, and the prison system, has also reviewed the risk assessments, undertaken. To make, sure that any lessons. From this case our learned, that report has been shared with the mapper strategic oversight group in Teesside who, initiated. A significant, case review. And that will consider the circumstances of the case and identify. Where any improvements, needed it can and will be made so I fully, understand, that the, circumstances. Of this. Case raise these concerns, however. I hope that the, information I've shared with the chamber today that, will be of some reassurance, not just to members but, to the wider public. Recently, I think the First Minister for a response, and she's right to say that it's rare that we raise individual. Criminal cases in this chamber but, this example merits. It, Mackintosh. Should be now just five days before he tried to kill again and as, his victim's husband Matthew said given. His past conviction, for a brutal murder I can't, believe the Scottish Prison Service deemed. That this sick individual, who attempted to murder my wife was. Allowed to be in the public domain, the. Family say that it's not enough for the Scottish Prison Service and the parole board to, just look at what went wrong in this case such. As the incident review the First Minister mentions, relatives. Say they must re-examine their, criteria, for, both assessment, and release of all, such criminals, on home, leave does, the First Minister agree with me that this must, now take place first. Mister absolutely. As, I indicated. In, my previous, answer any. Lessons. That, required to be learned an association, with this case of course required. To be applied for, the future as well and that, is absolutely the case since for therefore on that specific, point and I, do agree with Ruth, Davison can also say I entirely, understand. And sympathize with the views of the family I think if I was in. The shoes of the, family members of this, victim I would be saying exactly, the same things I think all of us can, recognize. That I don't. Think and I assume, if, I'm getting this wrong or Davidson. Will tell me but I'm assuming with Davidson as not arguing. That the shouldn't be provision, in our criminal, justice system for home leave as, I said earlier or that has for, a long time being an established, part of the rehabilitation, process however it is right that the most rigorous of risk assessments, are undertaken, by the the Prison Service and that's the Prison Service as opposed to the parole board to decide on matters of whom.
Leave. And. It's, also important. That strict, conditions, are applied that the kind of restrictions. That are. Often. Applied are. Restricting. Where the prisoner can visit stipulations. And what time they must be at the residence. For example, so if there are lessons to be learned from this case and undoubtedly I think, there will be then of course those lessons must be applied for the future. I accept, that this is an extreme case but it does tap into a wider public concern, under current, rules criminals, can be allowed out of jail before, their official release, and as the first minister says it's called temporary release and that means that they can be let out into the community without, supervision now. Through Freedom of Information we've. Discovered that there were over 4,000. Cases in the last year alone queer. Like McIntosh prisoners. Had been granted such leave now. There is of course a small fraction of cases like compassionate, leave with us may be appropriate, but, as the First Minister agree with me that when 4000. Convicted, criminals, are walking, out of prison, before, they've even been considered for parole that. This is something that we perhaps should look at again fresh. Music. I. Think, we should, look, at whether there are lessons to be learned from peace like, this one to change, or tighten, the. We in which to risk assessments, are carried, out in future so I absolutely, agree with that in principle. The one yeah I except these can be difficult, discussions, to have and these can be difficult. Things, I think for, the public not just for those of us were members of this, Parliament, but home. Leave has been an important. Part of the rehabilitation, and the reintegration. Process for, a long time, it. Empower, allows, an individual. To be tested, on how, an ethnic can adapt to living in the community for life sentence, prisoner's home leave is the final, stage in a phase program, of increasing. The freedoms and often. It helps inform the parole board's decisions, on suitability. For, release home, leave will only be granted after, the prisoner has progressed successfully, through the prison system so I think in principle, it is important, to have a system like this but, as I've, also said we. Must learn lessons, from individual, KC's albeit that they are extreme, cases to, make sure that there is a continuous. System. Of learning in place so I'm absolutely committed as I know the Scottish Prison Service, will be to making sure that any appropriate. Lessons are learned mr.. Davison I don't think it's unreasonable for the public to expect prisoners to save time, when. Cases like today's a marriage the question from the public is why, again, why.
Is A killer let loose to try and kill again, why, are the dice loaded, against. Victims and in favor of criminals again, why, do we only act when another family, is left to pick up the pieces of their lives again. Homely. For convicted, murderers. Where, they are free to walk the streets before they even face, the parole board should. Be reviewed, isn't. It that simple. Frustration. No I doing with the basis of respected with Davison I don't think these issues are that. Simple. I mean, riff Davison says the the public of a right to expect that prisoners, serve, their time and in principle I agree with that in fact it's this, government of course who finally. Took the steps to restrict automatic, early release of prisoners but. Where prisoners, are to, be released we, owe it to the public to, make sure that appropriate steps, have been taken to, reintegrate. Those prisoners into, society, because it's the steps that are taken to do that that, reduces, the risks, of prisoners, reoffending. The worst thing I think the Prison Service in the parole board it could do in terms of wider public safety, is to have a prisoner. That, is simply released, on the last day of their sentence without any steps have been taken, gradually. And over a period of time to rehabilitate. And reintegrate them. That's why a system of home leave however difficult this can sometimes be to discuss and debate is really. Important, as a part of a criminal justice. System, and I, think at the heart of Rhys Davidson's question as is often the, case for for the Conservatives, although often, their actions in government don't quite match the rhetoric in, opposition is this notion that somehow Scotland's. Justice, system is soft-touch. That frankly, the fact do not beer that, we've got one of the highest prison. Populations. In the, whole. Of Europe and the big challenges for a criminal justice system of, course serious. Criminal. Should be locked up that's not, in doubt but the bigger challenge, for a criminal, justice system it's how we do rehabilitate. With appropriate, prisoners, so that there is less of a risk of them reoffending. So these was the glacés with respect to risk davison are not, simple. Issues, these are actually, really complex. Issues and we, actually have a duty, to. Recognize, the, complexity, with the public but, that of course doesn't take away from the fact that when something, goes wrong in a case as will always happen unfortunately, in, any system, we make sure that, the views of the family of course are listened to and that lessons. Are learned and that's exactly the process, that will be followed in this situation. Question. Number two Richard, Leonard, Thank. You presiding officer, the. First Minister's own poverty, advisor naomi, i guess that has, said that investment, in good quality and affordable. Early. Learning and childcare is, crucial, crucial. Because, of the difference that it can make to children, from poorer backgrounds. So. It was a matter of grave concern, to read audit Scotland's, latest report.
Criticizing. The government's progress, in expanding. Early learning and childcare provision, last week, they. Say there, is no national, leadership. No. Sense, of urgency and, a. Hundred and sixty million pounds, funding. Gap, how. Does the First Minister answer. That, damning, criticism. Let. Me let. Me just share with, the chamber, the, very first paragraph of, the audit Scotland report, that was published last week, and I'm quoting the. Scottish Government's policy to increase funded, early learning in child care is consistent, with national strategic, objectives, around improving, the lives of children and their families the, Scottish Government and councils, have worked well together to, expand, provision, and parents, are positive, about benefits. We. Have of course already, expanded. Early learning and childcare from, the situation, inherited, from the last Labour liberal, administration, and, the. Plans that we are pursuing now, are the more ambitious, plans to, extend, child, care and early learning that this Parliament, has ever seen though inherent, in ambitious, plans there, will be challenges but. We are working through those challenges we are on track to deliver this, expansion, we're discussing with, councils, a multi-year. Funding package. It's not unusual with policies, like this for initially. There to be disagreements, between local, and national government about the amount of money required we fully. Plan to have agreement with Khosla by. The end of April on this and let's, not forget the purpose of this policy, is, to, improve. The experience. In the, early years of our youngest, children to prepare them better for. The school years and beyond and of course it is also about helping. Parents, it. Work without, massive childcare. Costs so this is the right policy yes. Delivering, a policy of this scale has challenges, but we are determined as. We we're with the 600, hours expansion. To deliver this because it's in the interests of young people the length and breadth of this country. Richard. Leonard. You. See it's there in paragraph, 66, of audit. Scotland's report and I quote them the Scottish Government, has not, led, has. Not led a national, approach to, help the expansion, in funded, hours but. Presiding, officer it's not just the depth but, the breadth of the problems, in this government early. Learning and childcare policy. That, are a cause for concern. Audit. Scotland also reports, that the government and I caught them again has, not yet done enough, to. Ensure that, the 12,000. Additional, staff needed, to deliver this new entitlement will. Be in place on time so, First Minister where. Is your plan to. Find the additional twelve thousand nursery workers needed to, meet your childcare promise. First. Minister. In, terms of the overall. Policy. I remember, when, to. Be fair not Richard Elena because he wasn't a member of the Parliament at the time but I remember other members. Of liberal benches telling us that we wouldn't deliver the 600, hours that we committed to we've, delivered that showing. The track record in delivering, expanded. Choke here and we are on track to deliver the. Next expansion and we'll do that in terms of the workforce because, Richard, Leonard says, where's the plan which actually, is a question that could be asked for every aspect of Scottish Labour's policy, but we'll leave that to one side where's. The plan let me outline at, the workforce, plan, firstly. The National recruitment, campaign, launched in October, last year, were developing, phase two for summer this year which is focused on career changers, and we've, already increased, capacity in, early years courses in colleges, and universities, to support the first phase of the, workforce expansion. The, Scottish funding council is offering around, 1,500. Additional places on a one-year HNC course in 2018. 19, 400. Additional graduate, level, places, were funding, 435. Additional, graduates, to work in our cities in our most deprived, areas and island councils by August this year skills.
Development, Scotland has, committed to increasing the number of modern, apprenticeships. In early, years and, childcare. By 10 percent when. When. Labour are actually getting the detailed answer to the question you notice they don't actually want to, hear, it so let me. Let. Me go by always, wrong let, me go back to the. Answer the skills development, Scotland is, increasing, the number of modern, apprenticeships. And early, years in childcare by ten percent, year on year up, to, 2020. And of course we're, also enabling, payment, of the living wage to all child care staff delivering, that, funded, entitlement. Saw it to Richard Leonard let me see quite clearly there's. The plan. Richard. Leonard. Well. In a more in amongst our avalanche, of statistics the First Minister. The. First minister did not even address the huge, shortfall, in capital, funding councils. Need, at least, 750. Million pounds, to buy land adapt. And build all of the premises needed, to deliver this policy, but, the money is not there for that either, this. Government rightly, made childcare. Its, flagship, policy but. As it stands there, is not enough money not. Enough staff not. Enough buildings to, keep that promise, and. Scotland's. Parents, can't even access their existing, rights one. Parent, has told the campaign, group fair funding for our kids and I quote them it costs so much to have the kids looked after while, I'm working, it's not worth working, another said when, I had my second, child it, was cheaper, for me to be at home than at work so. This policy, might well fix on an, election leaflet, but First Minister, your, delivery, of it is not fit for purpose no. One can believe your. Childcare, promises. For the future because. Your policies, in the present, are failing. Local. Councils say, it. Parents. Say it or. The scotland, sees it when, will you start to listen, First. Minister. Richard. Leonard for clearly providing more, facts in my last answer than he could cope with and, given, a more of a plan than he, actually wanted, unfortunately. I'm going to do the same all, over. Again. You know in terms of our past, commitments, we have delivered, the 600, hours that we committed to delivering and we also see, flexibility. Increasing. So we see the proportion, of time so settings. Providing, funded. Care before during, and after school has increased the proportion of council settings, operating. During school holidays has increased, but of course it's to increase flexibility. Further that we are going from 600. Hours, a year right, now to the. Eleven hundred and forty that we are committed, to in terms, of funding, this is that will be delivered over the number of years up to. 2020. So in this year were providing, 76, million in revenue. Funding to local authorities, it's, not in the year about to start of that 52. Million, pounds is new, we're also providing richard lena talked about building, the premises were providing, in 2018-19, a.
Hundred, And fifty million pounds in capital. Funding specifically. To support the next phase of infrastructure. Investment and I have to say finally presiding, officer is a bit rich for wretched, Lerner to come here today and, complain. About the funding for this policy, when that funding, for the coming financial year, that I have just outlined, Richard, Leonard and all of his colleagues voted, against. In this chamber yesterday. Thank. You there's a number of constituency. Supplementary, the, fresh from Liam care. Thank. You presiding officer, recent figures revealed, by the present Journal showed that my region the Northeast had the highest number of school pupils caught, with knives First. Minister I have here a letter from, December, 2017. From the Justice Minister in which he promised, me that he would publish statistics on school exclusions, for carrying a weapon in January. 2018. As at today's date the statistics, have not been published why not first. I'll ask the Justice Secretary to the member to update him but we are we've had exchanges, on this issue before ever the exchanges with receiver turn on this before we, are now publishing. More statistics, around the carrying of weapons in schools. The police Scotland statistics. That are published now, distinguish. Between, different categories, and I think that is right and proper of course, equally. Importantly, as, published in the data which is important. We have a number, of programs of work many, of them funded by this government to reduce violence, on, the part of young people not just in our schools and generally, so this is important, work I'll ask the Justice Secretary to give him a specific update on, the point here is but I think this is something that members. Across the chamber will. Be united, in committing to doing as much as we can to tackle, and to challenge Lee. MacArthur, thank. You for showing officers under the contract, same between the Scottish Government and circle Northland Courtney's lifeline, ferry service, across the, Pentland first has been provided, by a freight vessel, over recent weeks does she believe that, is acceptable, and if not can, she explained what steps her government took to ensure a more appropriate replacement, vessel, was identified, and could she also apologize, to those who've been unable to travel on this route during, the refit period including, my constituent, Terry Jane white a uni. Student rep with fibromyalgia. Who, asked a very legitimate question how, a replacement, ferry, in 2018. Is not accessible, for wheelchair users. Well. I obviously, I don't know the details but other, than what, Lee and Makassar has just shared with me about his particular, case, but of course and it, is deeply regrettable if any person. Particularly somebody with a disability felt, that they didn't have the standards on, a transport, system that they have, a right to expect obviously we will, and expect the highest standard. For, their own Northland, ferries or any other part of our transport, system, in terms, of the specific, issues about the, vests will be used during a period of refit, for the normal vessel and of. Course there will be a number of issues that circle had to consider. Later I'm more than happy to ask the Transport, Minister to speak further with circle on this particular point and communicate, directly with, the member or in the detail of it and, Jenny, man, presiding. Officer Channel 4 News led, with a heartbreaking, report, from Dundee this week our. City suffered 12 drug, deaths, in January, alone compared, to 30 eat in the whole of 2016. Dundee. Has the highest, drugs death rate in Scotland. Scotland's. Rate is far above the UK average and the, UK's, drug, death rate far exceeds, the European, average, this. Is a human, crisis, deep in the heart of our communities. What. Can the First Minister's, government do to help reduce, drug. Deaths in Dundee and across, the country Christmas. Day well this is a really. Important, issue and I think everybody. Would. Be distressed, that any drug, death and obviously distress that the. Contents, of the Channel 4 report. Earlier, this week and in. Terms, of if I can perhaps, address Dundee, specifically. First of all jenni, matter will be a word I'm sure that the, alcohol, and drug partnership proposing, to hold our Commission's specifically. On drug, misuse, and indeed to identify, best practice and consider issues.
That Will have an impact on drug use including, mental, health deprivation. And social. Inclusion and I think that. Move is to be welcomed more generally and I know this has been debated widely, in the chamber. Previously. Data. Indicates, that the rise in drug, deaths has predominantly, been driven by an older, cohort, of chaotic, drug, users, experiencing. Multiple comorbidities. And, we had of course the NHS, health Scotland report, last year establishing. Links, between the rise and drug deaths and the legacy of social policies, going, back to the 1980s. But it is absolutely, important, that we do everything we can know to, tackle and address that that's why we take a public health approach to problem. Drug misuse, we are reviewing our national drug strategy so it's founded on the principles, of seek keep, and treat the. Nature of Scotland's, drug problem, has changed, and, that's one of the reasons we're introducing a combined drug and alcohol treatment strategy. Were also investing, significant, sums of money to tackle problem. Drug and alcohol misuse. And, of course we, announced in the budget additional. Funding, for alcohol. And drug treatment services, so these are important, issues and we must work, as hard as we can to tackle, them if I can endure one I. Suppose a more positive look that I think should, give us encouragement for. The future latest. Figures. Indicate. That drug taking, in the general population, is actually falling and it remains low for young people so latest, figures indicate, the number of, adults aged 16, to 59. Using. Drugs in the last year has decreased, now I'm, not saying that should make us complacent, but it does underline, the fact that this is an issue about, a legacy, of older drug users who are now suffering serious health, problems and that must help his target, at the interventions, that we need to take to address that more effectively. Question. 3 really really I am. With the First Minister on, an ambition, to expand. Nursery, education on, deeply concerned, that she's, not gonna be able to deliver it I hope. She understands, when so many organizations have. Spoken, out recently look, at who is speaking out we've, got fair funding for kids who talk about the lack of flexibility, we've. Got the Accounts Commission who, spoke off a significant, risk a lack of clarity pure planning, and the, funding shortfall, you've got the child minders Association, who, see that the sector is potentially. Facing a crisis. Why, does the First Minister think, all these organizations, are wrong. That's. A mischaracterization. Of, my, position in the position of the government we're working closely with local authorities we, will. Address fully all, of the recommendations. Of the audit Scotland report, last week and in fact child minders will be absolutely, central to delivering, the expanded, provision. That we are committed to and that we have already been talking about today. The, lack of flexibility, as Willy Rainey, great and as I said earlier on we are seeing increasing, flexibility. In the current system but it's actually a recognition, that the current system is not flexible enough that has, just. One of the things that led us to give the commitment, to. Doubling, provision. Because it stands to reason if you have hold a provision, as a matter of rate then, the ability for that to be provided, more flexibly. Increases. So I I, readily. Acknowledge, and we did so when we made this commitment the challenges, and delivering, such an ambitious, policy but this is one of the many, policies, actually that this government is committed to that, has the potential to be genuinely. Transformational. So we will continue to, take the action children place the plans even if they're more detailed and Richard Leonard wants. Them to, be to make sure that working with our local authority partners this is a commitment that is delivered, just as our previous commitment, was delivered, because it is for the benefit of young people in every part of the country, really. I mean I want to repeat I do agree, with her ambition I really want this to work but, if everything is okay why are so many organizations, speaking. Out when fair, funding for kids want are in 2015. The first minister said she'd fix it in 2016. They, want again the, first minister simply, repeated, the same words and they are back again this year at, the country, of progress, it, will take another 20. Years to recruit the staff needed and it will take 45. Years, before, places, are available everywhere, during, the school holidays, three.
Years, After the first minister made this promise why. Why. Is the government so far behind. First, minister we're not far, behind I have to see some of the claims that really, rainy is just media ridiculous. And and will be seen to be ridiculous, in a few, years time when we have delivered less commitment just as we delivered the 600, hours when, many people across this chamber were skipped, about skeptical. That we would do so now in terms of fair funding for our kids I don't. Want to put words into their mouths and they will speak for themselves but many of the, frustrations, they have at about the current system, and the lack of flexibility, now I give, statistics, to Richard Leonard about the increase, in, flexibility. That we've seen over the last few years but that go far enough and it's actually the recognition. Of that that, has led to the commitment to double provision. So, we want to increase. The provision in the way we set out we want to make that provision, inherently, more flexible. And of course crucially which interestingly. Neither, Richard, Leonard or Willie Rainey of actually raised today we want to make sure that the provision, is of a very high quality because. Fundamentally, although, the benefits, to parents are important. Fundamentally. This is about improving the early years experience, or of, our youngest children, so this is one. Of the key policies, of this government I fully. Expect, to be scrutinized on the delivery as we go through the next few years but it is one that we are determined, to deliver and determine, to put the funding and the planning in place to make sure that we can and we do. Some. Further supplementary, the first from Ivan McKee. Just. Eight months ago the, Scottish Tories, boasted, about chomping Scottish, interests at Westminster. But, now it transpires, that MPs, teeth are marching orders from, Jacob, Riis morgue not. Ruth Davidson, how, can any scottish impede us to phi support, for, the harvest, of hard, breakfast, to, that constituents. Okay. Very, very briefly. The. Members decided to make a point but it's not massively, a question for the First Minister the First Minister me. But first the. First Minister me respond briefly but she will have an opportunity in, the next question, to respond at length and breaks it. I. Do think it's, pretty much a matter for the First Minister given the risks. The. Question, was about conservative, enemies, the. Question was pleased about conservative, MPs I don't believe your responsibility, for conservative MPs First, Minister Yahveh a chance to answer this question in a few minutes we'll move on to the next supplementary. Next. On Reggie from Jackson, car law. At, a at a recent meeting with the Asian community in my Eastwood constituent. Please. Be quiet mr. Carlos, speak at, a recent meeting with the Asian community in my Eastwood constituency. Police Scotland confirm, that there has been a sustained, series, of forensic, ly aware gang-related. Targeted. Attacks on Asian, households, I understand, in Eastwood and at Eastham Barton sure my. Constituents, make no complaint about the actions, of police Scotland are the efforts they are making but, one point police Scotland did make and these attacks, are taking place between 12:00 and 6:00 p.m., fortunately. But not exclusively. When households, have not been occupied is that, there is a reluctance in the part of the public who believe that information they may have will be regarded as either trivial, or circumstantial. Will, the First Minister join, me in assuring people, that they are not wasting, police time and if we are going to tackle this, particular and very precious, attack on the Asian community it does require all, of the public to give whatever information, they have immediately. To the police so, that they can act on it first. As. Jason Carlos, is a weird I represent. A very large Asian population in. My own constituency I'm very very well aware of this. Issue and, these attacks and and they are attacks. Targeted, on the, Asian community, they.
Are Absolutely. Unacceptable, and, should be completely, condemned, by. All of us I know people. Personally who have been targeted, in this way in, recent weeks so. This is a serious, issue it's one that, I'll be a constituency. Basis, be raising again with, with police Scotland Ahlul they work very hard to, support the community and Jason, Carroll was right to say that anybody within, the community who has concerns should, come forward and share those concerns the. Information, they give will never be treated as trivial because it's not trivial, these, attacks, are pernicious and. They must be tackled, and I know police Scotland is determined, to do all it can to tackle. Them and I think all of us should give all, of the support we possibly can it's a very valued, and valuable part, of our community, as, they face attacks, on them that are so completely, unacceptable, and, Alison. Johnson. Thank. You in 2017. A rare and beautiful young golden eagle was raised in the Scottish Borders by the only, pair of pleasing adults there he, was satellite, tagged and last month left, home for the first time less, than a week later he disappeared, in the Pentland Hills near curry his, tag stopped, sending data for three days then, started, again this, time in the North Sea off st. Andrews RSPB. Scotland, and Raptor persecution, UK regard, this disappearance, as highly suspicious and I believe it's likely that this young eagle has been illegally, killed Donald. Juror described, the persecution, of birds of prey as a national, disgrace but. It is still going on what, is the Scottish government doing in response to these reports and will, the First Minister finally. Commit to licensing, regime four game bird shooting Thank, You First. Minister well firstly can I see I agree. That the persecution, of birds of prey is, unacceptable. And would absolutely associate. Myself with at, the comment that Alison Johnston has made in that regard, the government treats this and, sees this as an extremely, serious issue. There is a guru tha's Alan Johnson will be aware that was set, up following, a report that was commissioned and published at last year on this issue which is looking at various. Aspects of this licensing. The impact of grouse shooting on, this particular issue, I'm, very, happy and I'm sure Rosanna Cunningham is the responsible minister would be very happy to meet with ours and Johnson to discuss this work in, more detail but I'm sure all of us across the chamber are united, in agreeing that this is something that is unacceptable and requires to be robustly. Tackled. Question. Before maracuja, to. Ask the First Minister whether, the Scottish Government will provide an update on negotiations. Regarding Scotland's. Police and Europe. The. Joint Ministerial, Committee on EU negotiations. Was, meeting this, morning and I understand, that broke, up just before the session, of First Minister's Questions started and there, will be another meeting next week in our, discussions. With the UK government we continue, at all times to seek, to protect both the devolution settlement and, Scotland's police in Europe, that. Said the UK government still refuses to listen to the case for retaining, single market membership despite the clear evidence including. From the UK government itself, of the damage that will be caused by a hard break that decisions. On the future relationship, with the EU continue, to be taken without the proper involvement, of all of the governments of the UK I wrote to the Prime Minister on this very issue on the 6th of February to, which I'm sorry to see I'm yet to receive, a response mata'utia. It's. The devolution, element, of that that I'd really like to focus on because a founding principle of devolution, is that the powers of this Parliament can, only be amended with the consent, of this Parliament and as, the Finance Committee's, cross-party, report, made clear as it currently stands, the EU withdraw bill and I quote is incompatible. With the devolution settlement in, Scotland now, in the First Minister's, view are the new proposals, from the UK government which.
Would Essentially, give them a supervisory. Rule over, Hollywood no, compatible, with devolution, First. Minister no I don't think the art I. Think it's right to recall. That, that, is a unanimous, view in this Parliament that cause 11 of the withdrawal bill is incompatible with devolution, there has been movement, from the UK government and I welcome, that because it's a recognition of, how unacceptable. The, initial proposals, we're but, that movement doesn't yet go far enough and I think just to try to simplify. This it. Doesn't just give the UK government oversight, of this Parliament in government it would in matters, that are devolved. To this Parliament, effectively. Give the UK government powers of imposition, or. Powers of veto, no, I don't think that's acceptable, the, government, of Wales doesn't, believe that is acceptable. And that's why there must be further movement, from the UK government if we are going to reach agreement and I hope we can reach. Agreement we. I think have been asked, by the UK government to take it on trust that they will no, exercise, these powers in a way that. Are unacceptable but you know I don't want to and I am NOT casting aspersions on the good faith of any individual. But, we shouldn't forget that this is a UK, government right now that, at times seems, willing to read roughshod. Over the Northern Irish Good, Friday Agreement, and I don't think we can simply take her and trust that, the same government would always respect, the devolution settlement that's, why we must have guarantees. That this, Parliament, the, powers of this Parliament and the devolution settlement must, be protected and no Scottish Government what that salt would accept anything less. Julian. Martin. Played. In. The First Minister respond. To the SRU. Report, this week and said that's about leaving the EU in every. Scenario, Scotland's. Farmers, would be worse off compared. To under the current trade arrangement, with somewhere all producers, facing, lower returns First. Minister well there's absolutely no doubt that breaks that will have a significant, impact on the DTD running, of every farm and every croft across, the country and, this, important, study reaffirms. What previous, studies have shown such. As those carried out with the Food and Agricultural, Policy Research, Institute and quality meat Scotland so, this report is yet, further confirmation, that, the Scottish government position of remaining in the EU are feeling that staying within the single market and customs union would, be in the best end trace not, just of Scotland but the whole of the UK and it's why it, does really Baker belief, that this week we have seen. Thought of the Scottish Tory MPs. Sign, up to a letter effectively. Calling, for the hardest, possible no, deal-breaker, is absolutely. Shameful, because it is against the interests of the country they're supposed to represent. Question. Number five Michelle Valentine. To. Ask the First Minister what the Scottish government's response this to the recent Scot audit Scotland report, which states that it's child care plans faced significant, challenges first, mister a commitment. To double. Phoenix to the education, is the most ambitious expansion. Of funded early learning and childcare that. This country has ever seen providing, all three and four-year-olds, and eligible two-year-olds, with, the eleven hundred and forty hours of nasus City education, will ensure that children get the best possible start in life we're also supporting parents, and families and to what training and education, we, will of course carefully. Consider the recommendations in, the audit Scotland report, and address the issues it raises but. We remain on track to deliver our expansion plans and I welcome, audit Scotland recognition. Of our good, working relationship with local authorities and other partners to deliver our shared objective, and, I'm assured, that we will reach agreement, with causa on a multi-year funding package, by the end of April we. Shall bouncing, thank. You as the First Minister indicated earlier the quality of childcare provision depends, on the quality and availability of, good staff the. Scottish Government, has estimated that they need between 6,000. And 8,000. Additional whole, time equivalent, staff to, develop deliver, the planned expansion and presumably. The government's funding estimates, are based on this audit. Scotland's, report however reveals, that the council estimates, place the number significantly, higher, with, an additional, 12,000. Staff required, can. The First Minister please, tell me which figure she believes is correct, First. Minister. The. Ones that. We believe are required, and as I said to Richard Leonard, earlier. On we, have a plan a very detailed plan in place to recruit the additional staff that, are required, for.
This Policy, and of course we will continue on an ongoing basis, to discuss, these issues with Khosla. And you, know what I think, we, mustn't, miss in, is the massive, opportunity. That. Is involved, in this policy as. I've said earlier on is about improving the earliest experience, of children, which will help them in terms of attainment later on in school. It's about making it easier for parents to get into work but it's also a massive, opportunity. For. Greater availability of, jobs in the sector and not just for young people particularly. For young people so every aspect of this policy I think, is positive yes. Challenges. Are inherent, in it because of the ambitious. Nature and scale of it but we will continue to work as we have been doing to, make sure that just like the last commitment. We gave it will be delivered and it will be delivered in foo. Unquestionable. Six mana polenin, as. The first minister said what the Scottish Government's response says to report that the office of the Scottish charity, regulator is a weird of multiple, allegations. Of abusive behavior and misconduct. In the third sector First, Minister well, like everyone I am. Appalled to hear reports of abuse and misconduct by. Staff in the third sector and I, am very clear that the Scottish Government will not tolerate human rights abuses, whatever, they take place we expect all organisations. To, monitor their work closely, and any reported, incident must be dealt with firmly, and thoroughly. Oscar's regulatory. Focus is to ensure that charity, trustees are, dealing appropriately, with any allegations. Of misconduct and, other serious incidents, affecting their, charity with complaints, have been made to, Oscar I'm assured that the trustees have acted promptly in line with the legal responsibilities. And that, safeguarding, policies, have been put, in place. Monofilament. I, thank. The First Minister for her reply, Scotland's, charity state said plays an important, role in creating a fairer Scotland, and we are all grateful to. Them for the work that they do recent. Reports about sexual, misconduct and, Scottish charities, as worrying, there, is no legal requirement for. Charities, to report, notifiable. Events to Oscar, so, as left open, to charities, to decide whether an event male, its reporting. Since, 2016. 8 percent, of all cases notified, to Oscar, related. To sexual, misconduct. We, know that stigma, and pure understanding of, legal rates top-spec, some porting sexual. Harm and coupled with charities, applying, discretion. To, what they tail or skirt the true scale of sexual, misconduct and, the charity sector could. Be higher what. Steps will the First Minister that are taking to ensure that, the current charity. Regulations. And Oscar procedures, are robust, and fit, for purpose and, can. She update the Parliament on other steps the, government is taking to speed up a, change. In culture. To ensure that sexual harassment and sexual assaults, are not played down and are, no Britta's and, victim-blaming, first.
Person But, in, terms of the first part of the, members question, we will you know continue to discuss with Oscar and listen, to any views they have about, any changes, they consider are, necessary, to the procedures, in, place but as I said, they already have a regulatory focus to ensure that charity, trustees are, dealing appropriately. With any allegations, of misconduct. And, I, think the second point I would make is, one that Monica, Lennon alluded. To is that, notwithstanding these. Quite. Horrendous, revelations. That we've been reading about and hearing about in recent weeks we must remember the good work that our charity sector does, there. Are literally thousands, of people many, of them volunteers of length and breadth of the, country contributing. Their time and efforts to help me in this country a better place I was very proud yesterday. As I was last year to officially open the, SCV or gathering in in Glasgow, that's an opportunity to recognize the, efforts of our charities, and third sector generally. And, finally, or on the more general, point all of us have an obligation in. This regard. We, you know at the moment one. Week we're facing. Allegations, and. Politics, or Hollywood more, recently it's been at the charity sector. But. Underlying all of this is not a particular. Sector, or a particular, organization. It is the fact that we have a culture in, our society where. Some men and I stress some, men still, abuse positions, of power that, they hold that, is what is unacceptable. These things are not easy for, any of us but all of us have a duty to stand up and do the right things to make sure that that culture, that fundamental. Underlying culture, is one that were chow and changing, for good. Linda. Fabiani. Thank. You presiding officer. Let me ask the First Minister, in, the light of recent reports, oh she agrees that where children, die for lack of food and waste women. Men and children across, the world are disadvantaged. In ways, that we cannot begin to imagine that. We cannot allow the. Appalling behavior of, the few to jeopardize, the aid commitment, to, those who need it most I. Hope. That's, something every single member of this chamber would unite, behind, we. Should never condone, or diminish. Individual. Cases like the ones we've heard of but, our charity sector generally, and our international, aid sector in particular do. Valued. And valuable and, vital, work and we must support them in doing that you know we all know that there are some politicians hopefully. Not in this chamber but perhaps in other, parts of the UK that would use. These revelations to undermine the, very commitment, to internationally, that we are proud of we must not allow that to happen we have a duty to help the most vulnerable and purest across, the world and I want to see us continue, to do that. Thank. You very much and that concludes, First, Minister's questions we'll. Move on to members business the name of cream D we're just thing a few moments from members and ministers to change seats.