SNP MSP Emma Roddick has urged her fellow MSPs to retain hybrid meetings in the Scottish Parliament.
During a debate on the Scottish Parliament’s Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee report on inquiry into Future Parliamentary procedures and practices, Ms Roddick raised the importance of the hybrid meeting arrangements for MSPs and witnesses.
“The hybrid system for meetings has been a boon for politicians and committee witnesses who might otherwise face difficulties in arranging travel, care or any other number of arrangements to be in central Edinburgh on a given day.
“The Scottish Parliament has often billed itself as being family friendly, and yet there were a number of MSPs who stood down at the last election citing the effect of constant travel to Holyrood on their family lives.
“We lost talented voices because of anachronistic working practices and it’s vital that we learn that lesson.
“I represent a vast region, some of my constituents live further from the Scottish Parliament than the Scottish Parliament is from Westminster.
“It is no wonder that many of my constituents feel so disconnected from politicians when some, usually from the central belt, in parliament expect their fellow MSPs to be in the chamber rather than joining remotely from their constituencies and regions.
“I hope that the parliament will see the immense benefits to MSPs, witnesses and indeed our constituents that the hybrid system offers.”