Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Seasonal Skilled Labour (Discussions)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 13th December 2017.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Jamie Hepburn Jamie Hepburn Scottish National Party

I am rather surprised that that question comes from a member on the Conservative benches, given the great pressure that is being caused as a result of his party’s shambolic handling of the Brexit process.

As I set out in my initial answer, we continue to lobby the UK Government hard, to ensure that we can continue to access the skilled labour from elsewhere in Europe that we will require for our economy. Of course, we cannot rely on just that, and we certainly cannot rely on the UK Government in that regard. I take the matter very seriously, as I know Fergus Ewing, the Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity, does. There is engagement between sector skills councils and Skills Development Scotland. If more can be done to ensure that we have the skilled workforce that we need for those sectors, we will work towards that. Indeed, I have already seen examples of that happening. Recently, I was up in Argyll and Bute, where I saw the local college actively engaging with the agricultural community to ensure the supply of a skilled workforce in future.