Management of Offenders (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 25th June 2019.

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Photo of Daniel Johnson Daniel Johnson Labour

I am mindful of two key points. The first is the correspondence that I have had from the cabinet secretary, for which I thank him. The second is my understanding that the Government intends to introduce legislation on the Parole Board. I will bear that in mind in what I say. I do not intend to speak for long.

The Parole Board does particularly important work in determining whether individuals continue to pose risk to public safety and whether they should be released from prison. It is therefore critical that the board’s work is carried out independently. That work is not always easy and it requires fine and balanced judgments, and therefore its independence is important. The independence of the judiciary, which is set out in statute and which we all have a duty to uphold, should be mirrored for the Parole Board. However, I recognise that there may well be technical issues with the amendment, and I will listen to what the cabinet secretary has to say on it.

I move amendment 1.