British Transport Police/ Police Scotland Merger — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 9:32 am on 6th March 2018.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Douglas Ross Douglas Ross Conservative, Moray 9:32 am, 6th March 2018

I wonder whether the hon. Gentleman is going to speak about the SNP policy that we are discussing today—the debate is about the proposed merger of the British Transport police into Police Scotland—or, as the SNP constantly does, does he just want to deflect attention somewhere else, shouting and screaming, “Look over there; don’t look at our failures in Scotland”? The SNP is letting Scotland down. This is yet another example of its centralisation plans, which seem to work in SNP heads and on a bit of paper, but do not deliver for the people of Scotland.

Every proposal was dismissed by the SNP. With the support of the Scottish Greens, the SNP Government forced through their plans. In the face of overwhelming volumes of evidence showing that this was a bad move that would dilute the service currently provided and potentially put rail users at risk, the Bill was passed in the Scottish Parliament. The plans were criticised by Her Majesty’s inspectorate of constabulary in Scotland for being entirely political. It also criticised the fact that no business case or due diligence outlining the benefits and costs was or had been prepared by the Scottish Government, saying:

“As the decision to transfer BTP’s functions in Scotland to Police Scotland was a Ministerial decision, no single, detailed and authoritative business case which articulates the benefits, disadvantages or costs of the transfer to Police Scotland was developed.”

That is shameful and unacceptable.