Scotland’s GP of the Year Announced

Motion S4M-13016: Richard Simpson, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Labour
That the Parliament congratulates Dr Sue Farrar, who practises at the Primrose Lane Medical Centre in Rosyth, on being named Scotland’s GP of the Year by the Royal College of General Practitioners (Scotland); understands that Sue was chosen from one of over 100 doctors nominated by patients from across the country, who provided examples of the exceptional care that they have received; further congratulates the runner-up, Dr David Murray from the Lochcarron Medical Partnership in Ross-Shire, which serves a rural community, and recognises what it sees as the huge contribution made to the NHS by GPs.

Founder of Mary’s Meals Named among the World’s 100 Most Influential People

Motion S4M-12996: Richard Simpson, Mid Scotland and Fife, Scottish Labour
That the Parliament congratulates Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, the founder and CEO of Mary’s Meals, on being named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world; understands that Mary’s Meals feeds almost one million children daily; welcomes the approach that it showed in tackling the recent floods in Malawi, which were reportedly unprecedented; notes with pride that, although meals to 128,000 children in Liberia were disrupted due to school closures because of the Ebola virus, it still offered support to the families affected; believes that the charity does a wonderful job in ensuring that the children it helps are supported into education, which is one of the millennium goals, and hopes that this successful Scotland-based charity, along with other sources of Scottish and international support, will continue to grow.

Members’ Bill to improve Scotland’s Relationship with Alcohol

Today, Dr Richard Simpson MSP, a former GP and consultant psychiatrist in addictions, has introduced a Member’s Bill in the Scottish Parliament to help change the culture towards alcohol in Scotland.

Alcohol misuse and its consequence for health and community safety remains a significant challenge throughout the UK. The Scottish Labour Shadow Minister for Public Health has brought forward the proposal to help change the relationship with alcohol in Scotland. The introduced Bill contains 10 measures spanning public health and justice policy.

On 13th March 2012, Dr Richard Simpson MSP formally lodged his intention to introduce a Members’ Bill in the Scottish Parliament and it had soon secured the cross party support required to introduce the Bill.

The bill to promote public health and reduce alcohol-related offending through restrictions on the retailing and advertising of alcoholic drinks; changes to licensing laws; obligations on Scottish Ministers to issue guidance and report on its alcohol education policy; and directing certain offenders towards treatment or restricting their alcohol consumption.

This is the largest Member’s Bill to be introduced in the Scottish Parliament to date. A Member’s Bill follows a 3-stage scrutiny process, during which it may be amended or rejected outright. If it is passed at the end of the process, it becomes an Act.

Dr Richard Simpson MSP, said:

“I am delighted to be introducing my Bill in the Scottish Parliament today. Scotland has a particularly difficult relationship with alcohol and this complex Bill is a comprehensive approach to take us another step down the line to improving Scotland’s relationship with alcohol.

“It will be a positive contribution to Scotland’s culture and a reduction in alcohol consumption, when these fair, workable and effective measures are implemented in to law. I believe that with the minimum unit pricing, and the legislation still being suspended in the European Court, this Bill is even more important.

“There are members across all political parties determined to tackle Scotland’s drink problem, however in order to be successful a shift in Scotland’s culture is essential, therefore I am hoping Members will support my bill as action needs to be taken now.

“The Bill strengthens elements which are vital in order to shift the alcohol culture in Scotland. With Scotland’s alcohol consumption per head amongst highest in the world, we cannot afford to wait any longer on this issue.”


Note to Editors:

Please find the link to the Member’s Bill below: