BY Mark Isherwood

MS for North Wales

Responding to the Counsel General’s Statement on ‘Justice in Wales’, I said that creating separate jurisdictions for Wales and England would be unjustifiably costly and lead to significant duplication of functions.

I also noted that this Welsh Government’s devolved policy agenda has left Wales with the highest proportion of children in the UK in care, the highest levels of Public order crime and Violent crime out of eight England and Wales regions, and the highest rate of imprisonment in Western Europe (Wales Governance Centre, 2019) ; and North Wales with one of the highest rates of violence against the person and sexual offences per 1,000 people in the UK (figures to June 2021); and stated that such a difference in delivery shows why the calls for devolution of the justice system should not be answered.

During a question on the Welsh Government's cost-of-living financial support package, I called on the Finance Minister to respond to the call by Age Cymru for extension of the Welsh Government’s Winter Fuel Support Scheme eligibility criteria to include older people in receipt of Pension Credit, and to concern raised with me on behalf of disabled people in North Wales who need to use extra energy for the equipment that keeps them alive, but are ineligible for the Welsh Government’s Discretionary Assistance Fund.

I also referred to the identified need for a coherent and integrated “Welsh benefits system” for all the means-tested benefits the Welsh Government is responsible for.

Intervening during the ‘Decarbonising public sector pensions’ Debate, I highlighted evidence that without fossil fuel back-up providing energy security during the transition period to an alternative energy system, many could die.

I Co-Sponsored ‘The Migraine Trust’ Senedd launch event for their new Migraine Toolkit for MSs, ‘All About Migraine’; Chaired a meeting of the Senedd Public Accounts and Public Administration Committee, which included consideration of Governance issues at Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and an evidence session for our ‘Care Home Commissioning for Older People’ Inquiry; and attended a meeting of the Chairs' Forum of Senedd Committee Chairs.

Other engagements included an online meeting with Maelor Foods, to discuss their ambitions for their poultry processing facility in Wrexham; being interviewed by Haywire Theatre Company about food insecurity in Flintshire and the wider area; and a call with new, Wrexham-based not for profit project ‘Joy Wisdom Trust’, “offering bigger picture education with therapy solutions, highlighting the long arm of abuse, domestic violence and mental health”.

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