Mark Griffin MSP

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Meeting of the Parliament 17 December 2014 : Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Mark Griffin (Central Scotland) (Lab)

I know that the inquiry’s terms of reference are of the utmost importance and that they will require to be given proper consideration. Will the cabinet secretary outline some of the work that will be involved in the process of drafting the terms of reference, and can she tell survivors why it will be the end of April before they will know what the terms of reference are? I take on board her point about the importance of sense over haste.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

I accept that. Both methods achieve the same outcome. As long as the Government has a stated aim—and it has said as much—that a minister will have BSL added to his or her portfolio, I am happy.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

It is in tune with the bill’s overarching aim. I hope, again, that this will come out in the evidence that you will take from individual BSL users, but they are proud of their language and culture and they want a much greater focus on the issue by Government and a bill that puts BSL on an equal footing with Gaelic by putting in place a Government minister with responsibility for British Sign Language.

My policy intention is for BSL to be attached to a Government minister’s portfolio, and I hope that the Government will do that anyway. As long as the Government makes it clear that there is an individual minister with responsibility for BSL in his or her portfolio, that will meet the aims and objectives of what I am trying to achieve.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

Deafblind people are not mentioned in the text of the bill. The bill specifically talks about BSL users, which covers BSL users whether they are deaf, hearing or deafblind; it covers the whole spectrum. Although deafblindness is not specifically mentioned in the bill, it is my intention that the term BSL user should cover deafblind users of BSL.

Deafblind people are specifically mentioned in the policy memorandum, and we would expect the consultation to take their needs into account. That said, we realise that the population of BSL users amounts to 12,000, and that the group of deafblind BSL users is smaller again and has a much greater resource implication with regard to the need for individual guide communicators.

11:15  

Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

As I said, I set out the five-year cycle purely so that the process could be linked to a parliamentary cycle. If there are practical difficulties because that cycle is too short—obviously, the Government has experience of the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005—I will be happy to accept a Government amendment to lengthen the cycle.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

I did not include that in the bill purely because I was trying to keep the costs of the bill as low as possible. I am happy to accept the Government’s amendment for the finances to be available, since it is the Government that will be footing the bill. The Government has been really helpful with its seven comments on strengthening the bill, one of which is to produce the national plans in British Sign Language, and I will be more than happy to accept that amendment.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

The Government has indicated in its memorandum that it would prefer the plans to be produced in BSL, and it has revised the financial implications and is content to see them produced in British Sign Language.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

Yes, I think that they should translate their plans into BSL. It is not something that is in the bill; that would have been an additional cost in the financial memorandum. I have produced the consultation, the analysis of responses and the bill itself in BSL, releasing the BSL version simultaneously at every stage, and the Government is to be congratulated on its commitment to amending the bill and to providing resource to ensure that the plans are also produced in BSL. I welcome that.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

The publication cycle changes in order to give the Government more time to develop its initial national plan. It was considered that, after the first plan had been developed, account would be taken of the performance reviews in the development of subsequent plans, which would therefore take less time than the development of the initial plan.

The cycle has been designed in that way purely to ensure that it is the Government that drafts the national plan that carries out the performance review, rather than a different Government with different political priorities. An arbitrary number of years was chosen, based on the parliamentary cycle, simply to make sure that the Government assessed its own performance instead of its performance being assessed by a new, incoming Government, which might have a different set of priorities.

I discussed that approach with the minister, and he mentioned the difficulties associated with the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005. The Government feels that the five-year provision in that act means that it is a bit tight for time, so I am open to the suggestion that the cycle be lengthened, as long as there is evidence that that will make the exercise more productive. That would mean moving away from the original policy intention, which would have involved each Government reviewing its own plans.



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Mark Griffin

It is up to the Government whether to go down the route of setting minimum standards. As I said, I had an hour-long meeting with the minister to discuss the overall policy aims of the bill, but I have not had any detailed discussions about what it would be reasonable for the Government to include in the guidance in order to set the policy direction. The guidance will follow the bill on what local authority plans should include on how they exercise their functions in providing services to BSL users, how they include BSL users in consultations and what services they provide specifically to BSL users.

Vote DetailMSP VoteResult

S4M-11901.3 Neil Findlay: Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce—As an amendment to motion S4M-11901
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YesDefeated

S4M-11901.1 Mary Scanlon: Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce—As an amendment to motion S4M-11901
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YesDefeated

S4M-11830.2 John Swinney: The Smith Commission—As an amendment to motion S4M-11830 in the name of Ru
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NoCarried

S4M-11830 Ruth Davidson: The Smith Commission—That the Parliament welcomes the publication of the Sm
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NoCarried

Amendment 6 moved by Dr Richard Simpson on motion S4M-11826 Maureen Watt: Food (Scotland) Bill—That
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YesDefeated

S4M-11825.3 Claire Baker: End of Year Fish Negotiations—As an amendment to motion S4M-11825 in the n
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YesDefeated

S4M-11825.2 Jamie McGrigor: End of Year Fish Negotiations—As an amendment to motion S4M-11825 in the
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YesDefeated

S4M-11825.1 Tavish Scott: End of Year Fish Negotiations—As an amendment to motion S4M-11825 in the n
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AbstainDefeated

S4M-11825 Richard Lochhead: End of Year Fish Negotiations—That the Parliament welcomes the successfu
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AbstainCarried

S4M-11763.3 Margaret Burgess: Private Sector Rent Reform—As an amendment to motion S4M-11763 in the
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NoCarried

Search for other Motions lodged by Mark Griffin
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Motion S4M-10185.2: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 02/06/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09447.2: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 24/03/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08563: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 10/12/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08437: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 28/11/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08270.1: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 12/11/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-06836: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 03/06/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-06588: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 14/05/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-06373: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 26/04/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-05941: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 13/03/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-05830: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 05/03/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Search for other Questions asked by Mark Griffin
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Question S4F-02402: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 17/11/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4F-02240: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 04/08/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-22092: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 11/07/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-21793: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 17/06/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-21796: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 17/06/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-21795: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 17/06/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-21794: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 17/06/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4F-02170: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 09/06/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03229: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 02/05/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-20276: Mark Griffin, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 19/03/2014 Show Full Question >>

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