This week, Ruth has:

  • Praised hard-working NHS staff after hospitals in NHS Ayrshire & Arran outperformed both the 4-hour A&E waiting time target and the national average. Across Scotland, more than 95% of patients in core accident and emergency departments were seen, admitted or discharged within four hours, according to most recent figures. Hospitals in NHS Ayrshire & Arran performed above the national figure, with 97.2% of patients being seen within the 4 hour target. The figures mean that Scottish hospitals have been the best performing emergency departments in the UK for more than two years.

 

  • Attended Ayrshire College’s ‘Girls with Grit’ event – an initiative to support women and girls studying or working in the STEM sector

 

  • On World Refugee Day on 20th June, pledged her support to stand with refugees and against the far right

 

  • In Social Security Committee, took part in debates on amendements to the Child Poverty (Scotland) Bill at Stage 2. Ruth’s amendments, to require Ministers to consider the affordability as well as the availability of housing and childcare when preparing delivery plans, were unanimously passed by the Committee

 

  • Caught up with local councillor, Marie Burns, to hear about the key issues at North Ayrshire Council

 

  • During General Questions, asked the Scottish Government what action it can take to ensure that creditors operating in Scotland are fully briefed on their legal obligations when dealing with clients on a debt arrangement scheme. StepChange Debt Charity has raised some concerns with Ruth that there is a widespread misunderstanding of the scheme in the credit industry, and Ruth pressed the Government to set out what further steps it could take to ensure that creditors that operate in Scotland are reminded of their legal responsibilities and obligations regarding the debt arrangement scheme. Specifically, Ruth asked whether the Minister could consider making it a requirement for creditors that operate in Scotland to have their staff trained in the debt arrangement scheme. The Minister indicated that he was open to meeting with StepChange to discuss the concerns.

 

  • Held MSP advice surgeries at Bourtreehill Library and Woodwynd Hall

 

  • In Education Committee, considered the Committee’s draft report on teacher workforce planning; took evidence from the Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science, Shirley-Anne Somerville, on subordinate legislation, the Registration of Independent Schools (Prescribed Person) (Scotland) Regulations 2017 and considered other subordinate legisatlion, including, Requirements for Teachers (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2017 (SSI 2017/170). The Committee also took evidence on school infrastructure from a range of people and organisations, including Peter Watton, Head of Property and Facilities Management, City of Edinburgh Council.