Results 301–320 of 362 for speaker:John Blair

Northern Ireland Assembly: Ministerial Statements: COVID-19 and Service Rebuilding (28 Jul 2020)

John Blair: I begin by associating myself with the thanks given by my colleague Kellie Armstrong to the Minister's departmental staff and healthcare providers everywhere. We truly are grateful. The Minister is to be commended for the way in which he shared his thanks with those front-line staff. We are all mindful of the autonomy of GP practices, and the Minister will be aware of the struggles that the...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Question for Urgent Oral Answer — Health: Restrictions on Travel from Spain (27 Jul 2020)

John Blair: Can the Minister give any clarification or information on how or if there is a joined-up Executive approach to this? For example, is the Department for the Economy working with employers? Is the Department of Finance working with holiday insurance companies? Are both or either working with the Department of Health?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Question for Urgent Oral Answer — Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs: Waste Storage at Edenderry Industrial Estate (21 Jul 2020)

John Blair: I thank Mr Humphrey for asking the original question. Given that we know that one of the sites is on the same piece of ground as a block of private apartments and immediately abuts other properties, is it clear whether costs incurred by residents thus far can be refunded to them through action taken against the illegal operator?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Committee Business: Climate Change and the Introduction of a Climate Change Act (21 Jul 2020)

John Blair: On behalf of the Alliance Party, I support the need for a specific climate change Act for Northern Ireland. I stress the urgency of that commitment, a commitment that was made in the New Decade, New Approach agreement six months ago. I therefore support the motion as tabled by the Committee. The urgency and importance of the issue and the required commitment mean that I am not in a position...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Sea Fish Industry (Coronavirus) (Fixed Costs) Scheme (Northern Ireland) 2020 (7 Jul 2020)

John Blair: I support the sea fish industry scheme as announced today. The benefits and outworkings of the scheme have been well rehearsed in the debate already and I do not intend to repeat them, but I should put on record that the Department has worked hard — I know this from the AERA Committee — to alleviate the detrimental impacts of COVID-19 on the fishing industry and the market for whitefish,...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (Amendment No. 7) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2020 (6 Jul 2020)

John Blair: I will address some specifics and outworkings of the amendments to the regulations. Before I do that, I thank the Minister for the statement. I welcome the amendments, which will, of course, assist in restarting the economy and also, very importantly, give signs of recovery and reassurance to those who have adhered patiently to the regulations in the interests of public health. As others have...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Environment Bill: Legislative Consent Motion (30 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I thank the Minister for his statement and the fairly extensive detail given. On behalf of the Alliance Party, I support the LCM, although I should probably say at the outset that colleagues and I see this as a holding position, an interim measure and a framework on which to build a Bill and policies bespoke to Northern Ireland. That will probably come as no surprise to others, including...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Oral Answers to Questions — Education: SEN: Post-COVID-19 Support (30 Jun 2020)

John Blair: 7. Mr Blair asked the Minister of Education what support services are in place for children with special educational needs following the closure of schools and special schools as a result of COVID-19. (AQO 499/17-22)

Northern Ireland Assembly: Oral Answers to Questions — Education: SEN: Post-COVID-19 Support (30 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I thank the Minister for his answer. Given that so few direct support services have been in place for the most vulnerable special educational needs pupils during COVID-19, I ask whether the Minister has secured the special school places for the 150 pupils still unplaced, who are waiting for placements?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Ministerial Statement: Green Growth Strategy and Delivery Framework (23 Jun 2020)

John Blair: On behalf of the Alliance Party, I thank the Minister for the extensive statement, particularly the address therein of the remaining, growing and global challenge of climate change. I hope that what has been called an economic revolution might also provide opportunities for an environmental protection revolution. In light of that, will the specific 'New Decade, New Approach' commitment to a...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Northern Ireland Prison Service: Staff Stress (9 Jun 2020)

John Blair: Before I speak on the motion, Mr Principal Deputy Speaker, I will take a moment on behalf of my party to add to your comments about Billy Bell. I knew Billy a little bit in my early days in local government and I know that he was a very highly regarded man throughout local government and across all political parties. I will also take an additional brief moment on behalf of the Alliance Party...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Northern Ireland Prison Service: Staff Stress (9 Jun 2020)

John Blair: Thank you very much, Mr Principal Deputy Speaker. I am not averse to having a closer look at this in other fora, such as the Justice Committee, but I am mindful that those who work for the Northern Ireland Prison Service are subject to the Northern Ireland Civil Service handbook rules the same as everyone else in that service. However, I stress that I am not averse to a wider and separate...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Northern Ireland Prison Service: Staff Stress (9 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I imagine, Mr Principal Deputy Speaker, if I could reflect briefly, that not changing it back is related directly to the consistency in approach for all the employees in that service and that I reflected on a moment ago. I will not give way again, as I am coming to the end now. The motion seeks that which I referred to, by the way, where the backdrop is that more working days are lost in the...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: COVID-19 Pandemic: Support for Sheep and Beef Farmers (9 Jun 2020)

John Blair: Mr Deputy Speaker, I apologise for not hearing you in the first instance. Speaking on behalf of Alliance, I am happy to support the motion, which comes, as I understand it, as detail of the COVID-19 agriculture, horticulture and fisheries support is still subject to some fine-tuning and final decision-making in the Department. Not unlike the last Member to speak, Mrs Barton, I will probably...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Questions for Urgent Oral Answer — Justice: Police Enforcement of Belfast Mass Gathering (9 Jun 2020)

John Blair: Does the Minister agree with me that the basis of the question is wrong and that scrutiny and accountability for the operations of the police lie with the Northern Ireland Policing Board, on which Members are well represented and on which some of us are already raising these issues, as is on the public record?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bill: Legislative Consent Motion (9 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I thank the Minister for the information that she has brought to the House today and made us aware of. The LCM extends the Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bill to Northern Ireland. The Bill creates a new offence to stop the unauthorised sale or resale of tickets for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games. On behalf of the Alliance Party, I welcome the Bill, particularly because it includes the...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: EU Withdrawal Transition Period: Extension (2 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I rise on behalf of Alliance to support the timely and relevant motion and the amendment. I thank those responsible for bringing them forward. At the outset, I assure you that I have no intention of making any attempt to rehearse Leave versus Remain arguments, because, as I am sure that all of us agree, this is not a Leave versus Remain debate. This debate is centered on how we address very...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Planning a Just Economic Recovery after the COVID-19 Crisis (1 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I thank the Minister for her statement and thank the proposers of the original motion for accepting our amendment. I thought originally that I was coming to respond to the amendment only, but I should be able to make some comments in response to remarks made. Before I do so, I will make some comments of my own. I will start by adding to the thanks paid to our front-line workers. I am hopeful...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Planning a Just Economic Recovery after the COVID-19 Crisis (1 Jun 2020)

John Blair: I agree totally. It is a matter that should be considered going forward by all of us but, specifically, by the Northern Ireland Executive. That green new deal would bring with it economic benefits to exploring and developing that circular economy. It will require new expertise. It will present opportunities for new learning experiences, and, in addition, it will bring opportunities to allow...


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