Results 1–20 of 1100 for speaker:Colin McGrath OR speaker:Colin McGrath

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Coronavirus Act 2020 (Extension of Powers to Act for the Protection of Public Health) Order (Northern Ireland) 2022 (21 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I am glad to be participating in the debate. Since the outbreak of the pandemic in March 2020, we have had a number of tools at our disposal to try to combat the virus. One of those tools has been the trust that we have been able to place in the Health Minister, through these powers, to respond quickly and effectively to the ever-changing nature of the virus as it spread so rapidly through...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Question for Urgent Oral Answer — Health: Safeguarding of Children and Staff in Care Homes (15 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: Mr McGrath asked the Minister of Health to provide an update on the actions his Department will take to safeguard children and staff at care homes following the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) decision to deregister a centre run by Praxis Care after inspectors found significant shortcomings that placed children and staff at risk.

Northern Ireland Assembly: Question for Urgent Oral Answer — Health: Safeguarding of Children and Staff in Care Homes (15 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I thank the Minister for his response. We have spent months and years in this place talking about the impact of inadequate care in mother-and-baby units and other institutions that the state places children in the care of, and we have always referred to that in the past tense. Yet here we are in 2022 discussing a children's care home in which the situation has deteriorated such that the trust...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Oral Answers to Questions — Northern Ireland Assembly Commission: Parliament Buildings: Rewilding (15 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: 5. Mr McGrath asked the Assembly Commission what consideration it has given to rewilding the lawns at Parliament Buildings to encourage biodiversity and support pollinators. (AQO 3293/17-22)

Northern Ireland Assembly: Oral Answers to Questions — Northern Ireland Assembly Commission: Parliament Buildings: Rewilding (15 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I thank the Member for the answer. It is a bit disappointing to hear, given that we have such expansive lawns to the front and side of the Building, that we could not use even a small portion of them for some sort of biodiversity and rewilding project. We could set a good example by having such a facility. That might be something that the Commission could consider, and maybe the Member could...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Oral Answers to Questions — Health: GP Contracts (15 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: Knowing that the Minister loves Question Time so much, I submitted a question for urgent oral answer. That was accepted, and I will ask it later. On the theme of difficult questions, at the beginning of February, we submitted a question for priority written answer, which was to be answered within five days. It asked what percentage of the departmental budget is spent on general practice. Is...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Adoption and Children Bill: Final Stage (15 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I welcome the opportunity to speak on the Bill, not least because it is at its Final Stage and shows this place at its very best. When we come together, work hard together and put in the hard work at the Committee Stage together, we can deliver change that helps people in their lives. Surely the purpose of this place is to do all that we can to try to help and assist people. That was not a...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Preservation of Documents (Historical Institutions) Bill: Second Stage (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I likewise support the Bill at Second Stage, and I welcome the opportunity to do so. I do not intend to speak for long, because we had substantial discussions on the clauses in the Health Committee, and we all indicated our support at that stage. It was only because they were ruled to be out of scope of the Adoption and Children Bill that those elements had to fall out of it. None of us...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Preservation of Documents (Historical Institutions) Bill: Accelerated Passage (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I offer our support for the accelerated passage of the Bill. The importance of trying to get it through in the short period that we have left has been eloquently outlined. Hopefully, with the support of the House, accelerated passage will make sure that it becomes a reality.

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Abortion Services (Safe Access Zones) Bill: Further Consideration Stage (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I am interested in developing that point. If you include the "reasonable excuse" message and a court decided that there was a reasonable excuse for the behaviour and it continued, would that not make you unhappy and more or less nullify the purpose of the legislation?

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Abortion Services (Safe Access Zones) Bill: Further Consideration Stage (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I welcome the opportunity to speak at Further Consideration Stage, although I will not speak for too long. The SDLP supports the Bill sponsor's amendment Nos 1, 2, 3 and 5. The amendments from the Bill's sponsor further tidy up the legislation, which is to be welcomed. They are mostly technical in nature, with the exception of amendment No 5, which provides further clarity on the need to...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Abortion Services (Safe Access Zones) Bill: Further Consideration Stage (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I thank the Member for the intervention. I am not 100% across the Act that she mentioned, but I certainly take the point that, if we leave too vague a definition in legislation, it creates confusion and problems. I am concerned that the individuals who will be subject to the ramifications of the Bill will, if offered a get-out clause, do their very best to bend those rules and push...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Abortion Services (Safe Access Zones) Bill: Further Consideration Stage (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I thank the Member for giving me the opportunity to respond to him. That is after the legislation has been passed. We can provide clarity in the legislation. Providing confusion, which then requires people to go to the courts afterwards, seems to be a clunky way to go about legislating. If we put the clarity in the legislation, there is no need to go to the courts afterwards, but, if you put...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions, Wearing of Face Coverings) (Revocation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2022 (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I thank the Minister for bringing forward the regulations. As other Members have said, this is the sort of day that we hoped for when we introduced all those rules two years ago. We hoped that we would get to the stage at which we could start to undo the legislative requirements of people. It is key that we note that we are where we are today because so many people have gone the extra mile...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions, Wearing of Face Coverings) (Revocation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2022 (14 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: Does the Minister agree that, while he wants to be able to take decisions that may save lives, for him to be criticised for doing so by people who are in a party that refuses to give us an Executive to take those decisions is downright cheeky? It is absolutely cheeky of people to sit here and say, "We are not going to give you an Executive. If the Executive need to take decisions to save...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Private Members' Business: Autism (Amendment) Bill: Final Stage (7 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I welcome the opportunity to speak on the Bill this evening. In doing so, I pay tribute to all those who have helped the legislative process and brought the Bill to its conclusion. In particular, I thank the Bill sponsor, Pam Cameron. It is great that any Bill gets through this place, but, as it is a private Member's Bill, I congratulate the Member on her work to make this a reality. It is...

Northern Ireland Assembly: Executive Committee Business: Adoption and Children Bill (NIA Bill 37/17-22): Further Consideration Stage (7 Mar 2022)

Colin McGrath: I welcome that we are progressing the Bill to its next stage. Throughout the process, the Minister, the Department, and the Committee — everybody involved — have been focused on the end goal of delivering legislation that places children at the centre of our efforts. The legislation that we deliver in the Chamber must deliver for children in their lives. It is essential that we get this...


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