Wefan Gymraeg

Westminster needs to move with the times

We need to embrace digital working and show that Westminster is changing.

By Welsh Liberal Democrats, May 20, 2020 3:05

Jane Dodds has criticised moves by Jacob Rees-Mogg to scrap the hybrid arrangements currently in place and force MPs to return London following the Parliamentary recess.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, Leader of the House of Commons, has today announced plans to wind up the successful "hybrid" system, which allows MPs to speak and vote either from the chamber or from home, after Parliament returns from recess.

The move has been widely condemned with many MPs highlighting that a resumption of 'business as usual' would force them to travel hundreds of miles to London to take part.

In response, we're calling for Westminster to maintain the current arrangements indefinitely and fully embrace online voting and participation.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds said:

"Over the past few weeks people and businesses across the UK have had to adapt to remote working. What we have found is that not only can it work, it does work.

"It allows people to juggle their work and personal commitments, cut out repeat journeys to and from the office, and enable everyone to participate - no matter where they live.

"The House of Commons has shown that this is possible for MPs too. Due to new digital measures MPs can now contribute to debates, ask questions and vote from their constituencies.

"However, Jacob Rees-Mogg now wants to scrap these new measures, just weeks after it was implimented. He wants us to turn our back on all the the progress we've made to modernise our Parliament.

"With the Palace of Westminster needing extensive rennovations, surely now is the perfect time to be embracing these new methods of online working. By doing so we can avoid wasting taxpayers money on temporary debating chambers and allow Parliamentary business to continue.

"Westminster needs to move with the times and show the public that it is changing the way it works, just as they have had to do. MPs need to stand up and make sure this progress is not thrown away due to Mr Rees-Mogg's nostalgia."

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