Neil Bibby MSP

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Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Neil Bibby

I want to ask about provision for deafblind BSL users. The consultation document talks about the needs of deafblind BSL users, but I notice that they are not mentioned in the bill. Is it your intention that the needs of deafblind BSL users could or should be specifically mentioned in the plans and, if so, in what way?



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Neil Bibby

Are you aware of proposals to change the Equality Act 2010 to address BSL?



Education and Culture Committee 16 December 2014 : Tuesday, December 16, 2014
Neil Bibby (West Scotland) (Lab)

Like Chic Brodie, I welcome the fact that you are pursuing this important issue in this bill. The current legislation, the Equality Act 2010, has been in place for a couple of years now. Why are the protections that it offers not seen as sufficient to promote and facilitate the promotion of BSL?



Meeting of the Parliament 03 December 2014 : Wednesday, December 03, 2014
Neil Bibby (West Scotland) (Lab)

Will the member take an intervention?



Meeting of the Parliament 03 December 2014 : Wednesday, December 03, 2014
Neil Bibby (West Scotland) (Lab)

I congratulate the cabinet secretary on her appointment and wish her well in her new role.

Last week, the First Minister said that, against every main measure, education is improving. We would expect that, given that her party has been in government for seven and a half years, but it is not true. In areas such as numeracy, the Scottish Government’s own figures show that standards are falling. Does the education secretary count numeracy as a main measure of educational achievement? What action will she take to address numeracy standards?



Meeting of the Parliament 27 November 2014 : Thursday, November 27, 2014
Neil Bibby

I am sorry—I am afraid that I do not have time.

As for early years, the Government still lags behind the UK on childcare for two-year-olds but, as Labour has made clear, we want a childcare system that not only has additional availability but is affordable, flexible and of high quality.

The proposals for the education bill include the promotion of Gaelic. As I have family in the Western Isles, I am a keen supporter of Gaelic and acknowledge its importance, particularly to communities there. As for the education bill more generally, it will be for local government and teaching unions to assess the workability of proposals that affect the education system locally, given the concerns about a workload crisis, particularly among teachers.

I absolutely support the aspiration to widen access to higher education, and there is a need for more children from deprived backgrounds to have the opportunity to go to university. After all, 3,500 fewer people from the most deprived areas are entering university now than in 2007, so I welcome the impact for access fund and the ambition to widen access that has been expressed. Yesterday, the First Minister talked about that in the context of a child born today, but I hope that we do not have to wait 18 years for serious progress on widening access and I look forward to seeing the clear milestones that have been promised.

I hope that the Government will listen to Labour’s call to revisit the decision to cut bursaries for the poorest students. If social justice is meant to be a mainstay of the Scottish Government’s agenda, it will revisit that. It will also look again at its approach to colleges and further education. As has been mentioned, the Government has slashed part-time courses, but they are vital to getting people back into work and enabling them to gain further qualifications.

We will work with university staff and students, and it is important that their views are taken on board in relation to the higher education governance bill. I know that the consultation on that ends in January. We have to listen to all the stakeholders in regard to that bill.

16:05  

Meeting of the Parliament 27 November 2014 : Thursday, November 27, 2014
Neil Bibby (West Scotland) (Lab)

As members have pointed out, the constitutional debate has dominated chamber time for the past three years, and we must now focus on helping people and the communities that we represent.

I welcome much of Nicola Sturgeon’s statement yesterday and what is contained in the legislative programme. Action on domestic violence and human trafficking, which Jenny Marra highlighted, is particularly welcome. I also welcome Nicola Sturgeon’s plea for constructive suggestions from Opposition parties about what we can work on together. I am certainly happy to take her up on her offer.

However, that will not stop us challenging the Government to deliver action. The programme for government clearly omits things that my constituents and communities want. For example, as James Kelly and Malcolm Chisholm made clear, we would like the serious issues in the private rented sector to be addressed. Such action is needed because, according to the Government’s private rented sector statistics that were released earlier this month, average rents in parts of Scotland have risen by a staggering 40 per cent in four years, which is well above inflation. I know from speaking to constituents that many people are forced to spend half their monthly pay on private rents, so hundreds of thousands of those tenants will be disappointed that the Government has not chosen to create a system that works better.

Moreover, as Alison Johnstone pointed out yesterday, the Government continues to ignore the issue of better bus regulation. It should support my colleague Iain Gray to ensure that the public are at the heart of our public transport system and that efforts are made to stop bus passengers paying more and getting less.

I will focus on education. To be fair, the First Minister put considerable emphasis on that in her statement. No one doubts the importance of education in improving our children’s life chances but, equally, no one should doubt the huge challenges that we face in our education system.

Like Liz Smith, I dispute the First Minister’s assertion yesterday that “every main measurement” shows that our education system is improving. As Liz Smith made clear, that is simply not true. There have been marginal improvements in a number of areas, and so there should be—we would expect that as a minimum, given that the Government has been in power for seven and a half years—but the reality is that, in areas such as numeracy, standards are falling. Government statistics published this year show a marked drop in the proportion of primary school children who are performing well or very well in numeracy and no improvement at secondary 2 level. I would have thought that our children’s ability to count would be counted as a “main measurement” of educational achievement.

It is not just numeracy that we need to improve on. As my colleague Kezia Dugdale pointed out at First Minister’s question time, statistics from Save the Children show that one in five children from poor families leave primary school unable to read well, and that level is four times higher than that for pupils from better-off households. There are many different ideas about how best to improve attainment, and we should debate them fully, but it is clear that literacy, numeracy and the early years are key.



Meeting of the Parliament 26 November 2014 : Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Neil Bibby

I know that the minister, like me, is a keen fan of both football and fair trade.

Earlier this week I spoke with Bala Sport, a new co-operative in Scotland that has already sold 1,000 fair trade footballs this year. We spoke about how procurement could be used to encourage the purchase of fair trade footballs and how they could be promoted through our schools.

The minister may be aware that in the past I organised a local fair trade football tournament in Paisley. Recently I have discussed with fair trade supporters the possibility of organising a national fair trade football tournament, given that Scotland is now a fair trade nation.

Will the minister meet me and Bala Sport to discuss those issues and other suggestions for how we take forward the campaign for fair trade football?



Meeting of the Parliament 26 November 2014 : Wednesday, November 26, 2014
7. Neil Bibby (West Scotland) (Lab)

To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to promote the use of fair trade footballs. (S4O-03737)



Meeting of the Parliament 13 November 2014 : Thursday, November 13, 2014
Neil Bibby

The cabinet secretary can blame whoever he wants, but the facts speak for themselves: there has been a reduction of 4,000 in the number of teachers since 2007. Can he confirm that the number of teachers has fallen every year since 2007—since the SNP Government came to power—and every year since he became the Cabinet Secretary for Education and Lifelong Learning?

Teachers, parents and pupils are concerned about the increasing pressure on the education system. The Educational Institute of Scotland has raised concerns about the possibility of pupils being sent home due to a lack of teaching supply. Can the cabinet secretary guarantee that no pupils will be sent home due to a lack of teaching supply—yes or no?

Vote DetailMSP VoteResult

S4M-11830.2 John Swinney: The Smith Commission—As an amendment to motion S4M-11830 in the name of Ru
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Not VotedCarried

S4M-11830 Ruth Davidson: The Smith Commission—That the Parliament welcomes the publication of the Sm
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Not VotedCarried

Amendment 6 moved by Dr Richard Simpson on motion S4M-11826 Maureen Watt: Food (Scotland) Bill—That
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Not VotedDefeated

S4M-11825.3 Claire Baker: End of Year Fish Negotiations—As an amendment to motion S4M-11825 in the n
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Not VotedDefeated

S4M-11825.2 Jamie McGrigor: End of Year Fish Negotiations—As an amendment to motion S4M-11825 in the
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Not VotedDefeated

S4M-11825.1 Tavish Scott: End of Year Fish Negotiations—As an amendment to motion S4M-11825 in the n
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Not VotedDefeated

S4M-11825 Richard Lochhead: End of Year Fish Negotiations—That the Parliament welcomes the successfu
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Not VotedCarried

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

S4M-11763 Mary Fee: Private Sector Rent Reform—That the Parliament notes that, over the last 10 year
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NoCarried

S4M-11766.3 Shona Robison: The State of the NHS—As an amendment to motion S4M-11766 in the name of N
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NoCarried

Search for other Motions lodged by Neil Bibby
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Motion S4M-11304.2: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 28/10/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-11034: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 30/09/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-10830: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 18/08/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-10147.3: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 28/05/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09963.2: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 07/05/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09815: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 24/04/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09312: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 12/03/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-09140: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 24/02/2014 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-08081: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 27/10/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Motion S4M-07893: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 01/10/2013 Show Full Motion >>
Search for other Questions asked by Neil Bibby
EventIdTypeSub TypeMSP NameParty NameConstituencyRegionTitleItemTextFormattedAnswer DateAnswerStatusIdExpectedAnswerDateAnsweredByMspApprovedDateSubmissionDateMeetingDateProductionStatusIdRecordStatusIdStatus DateOnBehalfOfConsideredForMembersBusinessCrossPartySupportRegisteredInterestSupportCountSupportDateIsEventLinkCurrentMinister
Question S4O-03737: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 18/11/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-23102: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 11/11/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03683: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 03/11/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03654: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 28/10/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4F-02351: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 27/10/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03618: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 20/10/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-22424: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 20/08/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-22214: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 30/07/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4W-22045: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 04/07/2014 Show Full Question >>
Question S4O-03367: Neil Bibby, West Scotland, Scottish Labour, Date Lodged: 11/06/2014 Show Full Question >>