More Senedd members to meet virtually but no plans to return to Cardiff Bay soon | Wales

More Senedd members to meet virtually but no plans to return to Cardiff Bay soon | Wales




Original Source


While some members of the Senedd will meet again tomorrow using video conferencing, there are plans to increase the number who can take part over the coming weeks so that by June all 60 members will be involved.

That means it’s unlikely there’ll be a partial return to the chamber in Cardiff Bay any time soon, despite calls for the Welsh Parliament to follow other institutions by holding hybrid meetings.

In Westminster, the House of Commons has been meeting with some MPs in the chamber and most making their contributions by video. The Scottish Parliament has a similar hybrid arrangement. Northern Ireland’s Assembly Members have continued to meet in person but in reduced numbers.

A number of MSs have called for a return to more normal ways of operating. Brexit Party’s Mandy Jones has written to the Llywydd saying:

There is no reason that a limited number of MSs can’t return to the Senedd to take part in debates, while adhering to social distancing measures. Every other parliament in the UK allows their members to nominate a set amount of people who can attend physically. The Welsh Parliament has already shown this is possible as we moved to a similar system in the weeks leading up to the UK-wide lockdown.

Living in a rural part of North Wales means that my internet connection isn’t always strong enough to conduct all my work from home, and I’m sure many other MSs have experienced similar issues while working remotely.

– Mandy Jones MS, Brexit Party

Asked about a possible partial reopening, a Senedd spokesperson said:

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