UK Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud invited to appear at Holyrood

11/07/2012

Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud has been invited to appear before the Scottish Parliament’s Welfare Reform Committee. The invitation was extended following a meeting between Lord Freud and members of the Committee today.

Speaking after the meeting, Committee Convener Michael McMahon MSP said:

“We have heard from many individuals and organisations about their fears for welfare reform and we take those concerns seriously.  Today was an opportunity for a frank exchange of views with the Minister on some of the issues that have been raised with this committee including concerns surrounding housing benefit in particular.

“We also heard about the timing of the UK proposals which have a knock on impact on the time available for consultation on Scottish Government regulations. We felt it was important to invite him to return to Holyrood next term to allow our Committee to explore these issues in more depth. Hopefully he can come back before Christmas so we benefit from his evidence before scrutinising Scottish Government regulations.”

Lord Freud was in Scotland as part of a wider visit organised by the Department of Work and Pensions.

Background

The Scottish Parliament’s Welfare Reform Committee was established on 25 January 2012.  The committee's role is to keep under review the passage of the UK Welfare Reform Bill and monitor its implementation as it affects welfare provision in Scotland and to consider relevant Scottish legislation and other consequential arrangements.

The Committee considered the Welfare Reform (Further Provision) (Scotland) Bill introduced by the Scottish Government on elements of Welfare Reform stemming from the UK Welfare Reform Act. This Bill has now completed its scrutiny in the Scottish Parliament and is awaiting Royal Assent.

The Committee has 7 Members and the Convener is Michael McMahon MSP.  The Deputy Convener is Jamie Hepburn MSP.