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Scottish Parliament Weekly Round-Up

Find out what happened this week at Holyrood....

The week was dominated by the Ferguson shipyard ferry contract row, the anticipated lifting of covid restrictions around wearing face coverings and arrangements being put in place for the Homes for Ukraine scheme.

On Tuesday, the Health, Social Care and Sport Committee brought forward a debate on their inquiry into perinatal mental health. Many of the committees carried out their work in private this week, but the Covid Recovery Committee continued to hear evidence to support their work scrutinising the Coronavirus Recovery and Reform Bill at stage one, while the Social Justice and Security Committee considered evidence on kinship care.

The First Minister gave a Covid-19 update to parliament on Wednesday where she confirmed that the legal requirement to wear face coverings on public transport and most indoor public settings will be replaced by guidance in the coming weeks.

During Portfolio Questions, Ministers were challenged on the government’s plans to address workforce pressures in health and social care, to reduce the shortage of social housing and to tackle homelessness.

Later, the Minister for Children and Young People announced the ‘Keeping the Promise Implementation Plan’ which outlines 80 actions to improve the lives of children and families in and around the edges of care.

At FMQs on Thursday, the First Minister was questioned by opposition leaders and backbench MSPs on issues such as the delay to construction for two Calmac ferries, cancer waiting time targets, long covid support and safeguarding measures to protect Ukrainian refugees arriving in Scotland.

Kaukab Stewart MSP then introduced a Member’s Business Debate on the impact of social security sanctions, including on people’s mental health and wellbeing. The Scottish Government also announced an additional £3.2m of funding for community justice services to support alternatives to remand, such as enhanced bail and supervision.

The parliament now goes into recess over Easter and will return for its final sitting before the summer on the week beginning 18th April.