Nanette Milne MSP

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Nanette Milne MSP

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  • Member for: North East Scotland
  • Party: Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party

Nanette is a member of the following Committees:

Nanette is a member of the following Cross-Party Groups:

Parliamentary Activities

Search for other Speeches made by Nanette Milne (North East Scotland) (Con)

Meeting of the Parliament 17 December 2014 : Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Nanette Milne (North East Scotland) (Con)

I, too, thank the cabinet secretary for advance sight of her statement.

We, too, welcome the Scottish Government’s announcement that there will be a national inquiry into the historical abuse of children in institutional care. I hope that it will provide an opportunity to expose the perpetrators of such hideous crimes against children and to learn lessons to prevent the abuse of children in care from ever happening again.

The cabinet secretary explained that key stakeholders will be consulted to ensure that the legal proceedings are as accessible as possible to survivors. I emphasise the importance of ensuring the inquiry’s accessibility.

The cabinet secretary noted that many survivors remain silent about abuse and have no voice. I am concerned that that might remain the case unless practical help and support are available for the brave people who come forward. Only an inquiry that supports survivors can truly deliver the justice that victims deserve.

How will the inquiry work alongside other inquiries into abuse that will take place across the United Kingdom? Will it share information with them? Can the victims have confidence that guilty individuals who might have worked in institutions across the United Kingdom will be held to account?



Health and Sport Committee 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne

Is there any predictability about how a strain of norovirus changes?



Health and Sport Committee 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne

So if that action is repeated this year, we can hope to see better figures next year.



Health and Sport Committee 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne

I note from the Government’s briefing that, last winter, far fewer wards were closed due to norovirus being either suspected or confirmed. Was that due to any specific measures? Can you enlighten us as to why that was the case?



Health and Sport Committee 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne

Are things being monitored very carefully? Given the previous cut in the intake of nursing students, it is important to look at the whole situation and to plan well ahead to ensure that people are coming through the system.



Health and Sport Committee 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne

Will it involve increasing recruitment in the nursing profession? After all, health visitors need to train as nurses first, and I am not sure whether there are enough trained nurses who are ready to take on the role.



Health and Sport Committee 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne (North East Scotland) (Con)

I very much welcome the promised extra 500 health visitors, as health visitors play an absolutely crucial role not only in the early years, but as children develop and in picking out families that need help.

I am a great fan of primary care-based health visitors, having grown up with that approach when my husband was in practice. They really have an insight into local families who face difficulties. I raised the issue last week, when the deep end practitioner agreed with me that, in that sort of practice, a practice-based health visitor would be really useful. However, Theresa Fyffe of the Royal College of Nursing Scotland indicated that things have moved on, and she was not quite so enthusiastic. I would welcome comments on that issue.

Some of the most experienced health visitors have gone into family nurse partnerships, and I am sure that they are doing a tremendous job there, but given the named person role, will 500 additional health visitors be enough? I know that that is a lot, given the standing point just now, but in the fullness of time, will that number be enough to cover needs? I am not convinced that it will be.



Meeting of the Parliament 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne

I look forward to hearing about that in due course.

I would also welcome a progress report on the Scottish Government’s monitoring of the food hygiene information schemes in Northern Ireland and Wales, and an indication of when such a scheme might be set up in Scotland.

Some concerns were expressed at stage 1, following which the consumer organisation Which? has welcomed the plans agreed at stage 2 to enhance enforcement powers through FSS working pro-actively with local authorities to drive up standards. Which? also welcomes the decision to allow the new agency to have improved access to food testing from retailers and manufacturers, which will allow action to be taken swiftly when and where food adulteration is detected, to protect consumers and other businesses that rely on the same supply chain. It is concerning that, just a few months ago, Which?, in its mystery shopping activity, found evidence of food adulteration and misrepresentation in a number of takeaways and fish and chip shops across the UK. It goes without saying that constant vigilance is required in relation to the contamination of chickens with the campylobacter organism, which Professor Hugh Pennington described in evidence as the commonest cause of food poisoning today.

A number of witnesses commented on the board size, which, at three plus the chairman, they believed to be too small. I am disappointed that Richard Simpson’s amendment to increase the minimum number to four was defeated. I hope that the Government’s faith that the board will always operate with enough expertise and will be consumer focused in all its work is justified, and I hope that the Government will monitor that, to be assured that the fears are unwarranted. I am pleased that the first board will have seven members plus the chairman, if I heard the minister correctly.

One important, as yet unresolved concern for the retail sector is the absence of robust appeals mechanisms for both fixed-penalty notices and compliance notices. The sector very much regrets that the Government would not agree to set out details of the appeals process or to provide safeguards for retailers in the bill, and it would like assurances from the Government that it will work with retailers on any secondary legislation to ensure robust appeal systems for FPNs and compliance notices. Both the Scottish Retail Consortium and the Scotch Whisky Association have offered to comment on, or assist with, the drafting of regulations and guidance that will accompany the bill, and I hope that that offer will be taken up.

I will not go into detail on why retailers believe that the burden of proof for FPNs must be set beyond reasonable doubt and that a robust appeal system is important to ensure that decisions are based on the same level of evidence that is required for a criminal, rather than civil penalty, because I know that officials have been in talks with the retail sector about that as the bill has progressed through Parliament. Likewise for compliance notices, the lack of a strong appeal process could have very serious implications for the livelihoods of smaller producers.

I ask the minister to assure us that those concerns will be considered when any secondary legislation is under discussion and that the Government will explicitly consult organisations such as the SRC and the SWA, which have consistently stressed the importance of a clear and robust appeals process being available.

If those residual concerns are addressed, taking into account the pledges that the minister has made today, I think that the Food (Scotland) Bill can be a very effective piece of legislation in meeting the interests of food health protection and nutritional support in Scotland. I look forward to its implementation, assuming that it is approved at decision time today, and to hearing about the activities as food standards Scotland develops in the months and years ahead.



Meeting of the Parliament 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne (North East Scotland) (Con)

The Food (Scotland) Bill was welcomed by most of the people who responded to the Health and Sport Committee’s call for evidence, and the relatively few amendments to it at stages 2 and 3 indicate the general approval of its measures. I said at stage 1:

“In this day and age, when so many of us rely increasingly on processed food and ready-prepared meals, it is crucial that we can trust the safety and nutrition value of the food that we eat.”—[Official Report, 2 October 2014; c 47.]

It is also vital that we begin to tackle the very serious problem of obesity in Scotland.

Given the changed remit of the Food Standards Agency south of the border and following the horsemeat scandal, it is generally accepted that the time is right for Scotland to set up a new stand-alone body, with wider powers than the FSA that it replaces. FSS will bring together the FSA’s existing public health protection role and a new objective on diet and nutrition, and it will also have powers in relation to labelled food and non-compliance with food law.

To be effective in tackling the complexities of diet and nutrition in Scotland, FSS will have to develop a strong leadership and co-ordinating role, which can be developed only through negotiation after the new body is in place. It must be adequately resourced and work closely with the Scottish Government’s scientific advisers.

At stage 1, the importance of the existing links between the advisory committees and the UK Food Standards Agency was highlighted. Those committees will be able to pull together the significant on-going work in the UK and across Europe, and give advice through the FSA to FSS as an independent body. That makes the memorandum of understanding between the FSA and FSS crucial to the success of the new body. It must set out how the two will work together, where appropriate, and enable them to exchange data and research findings in all areas of mutual interest. I confess that I do not know whether the MOU has yet been published, although I know that it was being drafted. I would appreciate an update from the minister on its development.



Meeting of the Parliament 09 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 09, 2014
Nanette Milne (North East Scotland) (Con)

A number of significant witnesses sought a larger minimum number of people on the board. Richard Simpson has given a number of very good reasons why his amendment 6 should be approved, and I am happy to support it.

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
>> Show more
YesDefeated

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

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

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
>> Show more
NoCarried

Search for other Motions lodged by Nanette Milne
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Motion S4M-11766.2: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-11462: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 06/11/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-10257.2: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 09/06/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09446.2: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 24/03/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09430: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 20/03/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08752.2: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 14/01/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-07718.1: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 19/09/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-07599: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 05/09/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-07419: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 09/08/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-06713: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 22/05/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Search for other Questions asked by Nanette Milne
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Question S4O-03877: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 15/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23530: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23531: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 04/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23500: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23499: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23489: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23483: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23481: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23482: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 02/12/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23393: Nanette Milne, North East Scotland, Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Date Lodged: 21/11/2014 Show Full Question >>

Further information

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