Motion on Virtual Participation in Proceedings

At 9.36am I responded to a motion on virtual participation which extended the ability of MPs to participate in debates remotely. I first called on the Government to introduce these measures in June and have repeatedly done so. I welcome this motion as a necessary measure to keep MPs safe. You can read my full speech below: 

“Can I thank the Leader of the House for bringing forward this motion? It is a really important motion. I am slightly disappointed —it just shows the Government’s desperate incompetence —that the Leader of the House chose to announce on social media that he was bringing forward this motion, and did not cc Opposition Members into the letter to the Procedure Committee. I want to thank the Chair of the Procedure Committee, the right hon. Member for Staffordshire Moorlands (Karen Bradley), and the whole Committee for all their hard work in listening to Members’ concerns and bringing forward their voice on this. May I say, though, that it was wrong for the Leader of the House to pitch out hon. Members who were doing their duty by public health—those who, for example, had to stay at home looking after people with covid-19, which is sweeping our nations—and who did the right thing? Now every single voice of every single hon. Member can be heard ring out, subject to your call list, Mr Speaker, so Her Majesty’s Opposition wholeheartedly support this motion.”