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Scottish Legislation

Volume 972: debated on Monday 29 October 1979

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On another point of order, Mr. Speaker. I am conscious of the difficulties of the House and I am conscious of your own difficulty. I seek guidance in a general way on the statement about legislation affecting Scottish Members. For example, if parts of a Bill that was generally applicable to England and Wales were to include several clauses relating exclusively to Scottish matters, is it not the case that such a Bill would be sent to a United Kingdom Committee on which, at most, there would be only one or two Scottish Members on each side? If the matter under discussion were of supreme importance in Scotland, either because of the social background or because matters of social services, health or education were entirely different from those in England and Wales, how then would Scottish Members be placed in pursuing these matters in Committee? Would it be possible to extract such clauses from such a Bill so that they could be put to a separate Scottish Committee for discussion, or put before the Scottish Grand Committee for a debate in principle? These are the matters which concern us. I am not referring to the fact that there may be a case in point.

The hon. Gentleman will know that the arrangement of business is not a matter for the Chair. I shall look into the points that he has raised and write to him if I feel that there is anything that I ought to add.