SCRAP Prescription Charges

The weblog of the Scottish Campaign to Remove All Prescription Charges. Keeping you updated on all the news about Colin Fox MSP's bill to the Scottish Parliament.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Executive blocks Prescription Charges Bill till December

Edinburgh Evening News


NEW Scottish Socialist Party leader Colin Fox has accused the Scottish Executive of censoring debate on his Bill to scrap prescription charges.

A decision by the Scottish Parliament’s business bureau means the Bill will not be debated in the parliament until Christmas - a full two and a half years after it was first lodged.

Mr Fox, a list MSP for the Lothians, claimed the Executive parties, which have a majority of the votes in the bureau, were deliberately delaying the proposed legislation despite widespread public support.

"So much for the idea the parliament is ready to spring into action on new ideas," he said. "This suggests it has all the spring in its step of an extinct dinosaur.

"It means 75,000 people in Scotland will face another year when they will go without medicines they need because they don’t have the money."

The Abolition of NHS Prescription Charges (Scotland) Bill was first put forward by Mr Fox in June 2003. But the Stage One debate - to decide whether the general principles of the Bill should be approved - is not scheduled until December 22, the day before MSPs begin their Christmas break.

Mr Fox said he was convinced the Executive was behind the delay. "I’m accusing them of censoring the parliament’s opportunity to debate this Bill fully."

An Executive spokesman said the timetabling of parliamentary business was a matter for the parliament. "It doesn’t have anything directly to do with the Executive," he said. "The scheduling is decided by the business bureau on the recommendation, in this case of the health committee."

posted by Alister at 3:41 pm

Monday, February 07, 2005

SCRAP Newsletter

SCRAP has produced it's first newsletter in support of its campaign.

click here to view or download the newsletter (PDF file)

posted by Alister at 9:55 am