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Summary

  1. Children, Young People and Education Committee
  2. Plenary begins at 1.30pm with Questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Education
  3. Questions to the Counsel General
  4. Topical Questions
  5. Motion to approve the Official Languages Scheme for the Fifth Assembly and note the compliance report for the period 2015-2017
  6. Debate by Individual Members: specialist paediatric rheumatology
  7. Debate on the 'Live Music Protection in Wales' Petition
  8. Short Debate: Remembering Srebrenica

Live Reporting

By Alun Jones and Nia Harri

All times stated are UK

Hwyl

That's it from the Siambr for today.

Senedd Live will be back on Tuesday 18 July.

Senedd
BBC

'We owe it to the people of Srebrenica'

Jayne Bryant concludes, "we owe it to the people of Srebrenica, we must remember Srebrenica".

Jayne Bryant
BBC

Remembering Srebrenica

The topic chosen by Jayne Bryant (Newport West) for the Short Debate is 'Remembering Srebrenica'.

Srebrenica will forever be linked to the Bosnian Serb forces' massacre of around 8,000 Muslim men and boys in 1995.

About 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys died at the hands of Bosnian Serb forces in 1995
BBC
About 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys died at the hands of Bosnian Serb forces in 1995

Debate by Individual Members: proposal passed

AMs pass the proposal calling on the Welsh Government to support calls for the creation of a fully dedicated multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales.

There were 27 members for, nine abstentions and nobody against.

the vote
BBC

Adopting the agent of change principle

Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Rural Affairs Lesley Griffiths says she has written to all local authorities telling them to apply the agent of change principle with immediate effect.

Under the agent of change principle, if new developments or uses are to be introduced near a pre-existing business, such as a live music venue, it is the responsibility of the developer to ensure solutions to address and mitigate noise are put forward as part of proposals.

It is also the developer’s responsibility to ensure the measures are capable of being implemented.

Clwb Ifor Bach sits in a prime site for redevelopment
BBC
Clwb Ifor Bach sits in a prime site for redevelopment

Importance of live music to the Cardiff economy

Several AMs stress the importance of live music to the Cardiff economy, including the Coldplay concerts last night and tonight in the Principality Stadium.

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Background to the petition

David Rowlands explains the background to the petition is the campaign to save live music in Womanby Street, a prime site for new developments opposite Cardiff Castle.

It is already home to several venues, including Clwb Ifor Bach, and is the base for the annual Swn festival.

Nearby venues Dempseys and the Full Moon have recently closed for redevelopment, while Clwb Ifor Bach has learnt of a plan to convert a neighbouring derelict site into flats.

David Rowlands
BBC

'Splendid example of democracy in action;

Petitions Committee chair David Rowlands says the debate on the petition is a "splendid example of democracy in action".

Richard Vaughan (centre) organised the petition
Senedd
Richard Vaughan (centre) organised the petition

'Take steps to protect live music venues in Wales'

We move on to a debate on the 'Live Music Protection in Wales' Petition, currently under consideration by the Petitions Committee.

This is the petition text:

"We call on the National Assembly for Wales to take steps to protect live music venues in Wales. In particular, we ask that the Assembly introduces the ‘agent of change’ principle to make it the responsibility of the developers of any new premises, commercial or residential, to find solutions to noise from nearby pre-existing business. We further call on the National Assembly to legislate so that it is possible for local authorities to recognise an area of ‘cultural significance for music’ within the planning framework."

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'Unacceptable' to be without a specialist paediatric rheumatology centre

UKIP's Caroline Jones says it is "unacceptable" that Wales is the only home nation without a specialist paediatric rheumatology centre.

She talks about the difficult experiences of an eight year old she has met with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.

Caroline Jones
BBC

'Unacceptable that Wales has been left behind'

David Melding calls for a "fully dedicated" paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales - there are 12 in England.

It is "unacceptable that Wales has been left behind," he says.

David Melding
BBC

15,000 children and young people in UK affected by arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition that causes pain and inflammation in a joint.

In the UK, around 10 million people have arthritis. It affects people of all ages, including children.

The two most common types of arthritis are:

  • Osteoarthritis: the most common type of arthritis in the UK, affecting around 8 million people. It most often develops in adults who are in their late 40s or older. It's also more common in women and people with a family history of the condition. However, it can occur at any age as a result of an injury or be associated with other joint-related conditions, such as gout or rheumatoid arthritis.

  • Rheumatoid Arthritis: In the UK, rheumatoid arthritis affects more than 400,000 people. It often starts when a person is between 40 and 50 years old. Women are three times more likely to be affected than men. Rheumatoid and osteoarthritis are two different conditions. Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when the body's immune system targets affected joints, which leads to pain and swelling.

Arthritis is often associated with older people, but it can also affect children. In the UK, about 15,000 children and young people are affected by arthritis.

Debate by Individual Members

Next we have a Debate by Individual Members.

David Melding (South Wales Central)

Dai Lloyd (South Wales West)

Caroline Jones (South Wales West)

Rhun ap Iorwerth (Ynys Môn)

Julie Morgan (Cardiff North)

propose that the assembly:

1. Notes that Wales is the only home nation without a specialist paediatric rheumatology centre.

2. Notes that there are an estimated 400 children in South Wales alone that are suffering with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.

3. Recognises the need for a multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales.

4. Notes that the Welsh Health Specialist Services Committee is undertaking a comprehensive review of paediatric specialised services in Wales.

5. Calls on the Welsh Government to support calls from Arthritis Care, the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society and the British Society for Rheumatology for the creation of a fully dedicated multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales.

Rheumatology
BBC

AMs approve the Assembly Commission's Official Languages Scheme

There were no contributors from UKIP to the debate.

AMs approve the Assembly Commission's Official Languages Scheme, without objection.

New approach would not apply to existing staff

Adam Price stresses the new approach would not apply other than voluntarily to existing staff in their current roles.

'Equality Impact Assessment should be published'

Bethan Jenkins, Chair of the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee, says that "broadly, committee members were content with the scheme and acknowledged the generally excellent support they received to help them carry out their work in both the Assembly’s official languages".

She calls for the Equality Impact Assessment to be made public.

Bethan Jenkins
BBC

'More work to do to become a truly bilingual institution'

Adam Price is the Commissioner with responsibility for official languages.

He says the Annual Compliance Report cites "occasions during the year we have failed to achieve the high standards and how we learn from them".

He says "there is more work to do to become a truly bilingual institution".

Adam Price
BBC

‘Basic linguistic courtesy’

We now have a motion to approve the Official Languages Scheme for the Fifth Assembly. It states by summer 2018, the Assembly commission will:

"adopt an approach where all posts advertised require at least a basic level of Welsh language skills (‘basic linguistic courtesy’) with candidates expected to either evidence those skills on appointment, or commit to gain those skills as part of the induction process".

90 Second Statements

We now have the 90 Second Statements, where three AMs have the opportunity to raise issues of topical interest.

'No such payment was promised'

Economy Secretary Ken Skates says no such payment was promised.

He adds, however, "we stand ready to help in any way we can".

Ken Skates
BBC

Topical Question 3: Coilcolor

Mohammad Asghar (South Wales East): Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on how the Welsh Government intends to prevent job losses at Coilcolor in Newport?

Welsh ministers have "paid lip service" to wanting to protect jobs, the boss of a Newport steel panelling company on the brink of closure has claimed.

Coilcolor, which produces blue and orange panelling for Ikea and Easyjet, flooded in November 2016.

Managing director Dean Proctor said his two-month wait for a payment he claims the Welsh Government said would take days was "diabolical".

Dean Proctor says last winter's flood cost the steel firm £3.7m
BBC
Dean Proctor says last winter's flood cost the steel firm £3.7m

Minister has 'repeatedly expressed concerns'

Minister for Skills and Science Julie James says she has "repeatedly expressed concerns" to the UK government about the closure of DWP offices, and will do so again tomorrow.

Julie James
BBC

Topical Question 2: closure of DWP offices

Eluned Morgan (Mid and West Wales): What discussions has the Cabinet Secretary held regarding job losses resulting from the confirmed closure of DWP offices in Llanelli and other parts of Wales?

DWP changes in Wales

  • Eight sites - including job centres at Pyle, Mountain Ash and Tredegar - will close.
  • Work at the Aberystwyth office in a former school building will move into a job centre in the town.
  • Haverfordwest Winch Lane Surgery health and disability team will move to the town's job centre.
  • Llanelli Crown Buildings are to close permanently.
  • Aldway House in Porth will close with work moving to Tonypandy.
  • Work at St David's House in Newtown, Powys, will move into Newtown job centre.
  • Job centres in Ystradgynlais, Newtown and Llandrindod Wells, which were earmarked for closure, will stay open.
  • Two other sites are still under negotiation.
The DWP's offices at Crown Buildings in Llanelli will close permanently
Google
The DWP's offices at Crown Buildings in Llanelli will close permanently

'We all need to know the truth'

Health Secretary Vaughan Gething welcomes the inquiry, saying "we all need to know the truth".

He adds he "expects full engagement with those affected in Wales".

Vaughan Gethin
BBC

Topical Question 1: public inquiry into the contaminated blood scandal

Julie Morgan (Cardiff North): What are the implications for Wales following the decision to hold a public inquiry into the contaminated blood scandal?

The inquiry has been launched by the UK government and a spokesman for the prime minister said it would establish the causes of the "appalling injustice" that took place in the 1970s and 1980s.

Many of those affected and their families believe they were not told of the risks involved and there was a cover-up.

Julie Morgan, who chairs the Assembly's cross-party group on haemophilia and contaminated blood, says 70 Welsh people died and many were "still suffering".

'Gove symbolically pulled out of international obligation that relates to a devolved area'

Mr Antoniw replies, as he often does, that any such assessments are legally privileged.

Simon Thomas' concern is that "Michael Gove has symbolically pulled out of an international obligation that relates to a devolved area".

Mr Antoniw expresses "serious concern that in what is a clearly devolved are, officials were only notified on 30 June that an announcement would be made on 2 July despite a marine and fisheries working group of the four administrations being held on 26 June".

Mick Antoniw
BBC
Mick Antoniw

Withdrawing from the 1964 London fisheries convention

Now we have questions to Counsel General Mick Antoniw.

The first is by Simon Thomas (Mid and West Wales): Will the Counsel General make a statement on the legal implications for Wales of withdrawing from the 1964 London fisheries convention?

This means foreign boats will be restricted from fishing in UK waters.

Higher education facing a 'perfect storm'

Kirsty Williams says higher education is facing a "perfect storm" because of Brexit and a very competitive market in the UK and worldwide, but adds that universities in Wales are still well funded.

'Wagner was shorter than that'

"Wagner was shorter than that" says former Deputy Presiding Officer David Melding as Rhianon Passmore, AM for Islwyn, asks a lengthy question on the measures the Welsh Government is taking to ensure music education is accessible to all.

Wagner
BBC

'Piling on the pressure on the students is not the answer'

Plaid Cymru's Llyr Gruffydd asks "what do you think is an acceptable level of debt for students in Wales?"

Kirsty Williams does not give a figure, but says "I'm very well aware that these are difficult and challenging issues".

"Piling on the pressure on the students is not the answer," says Mr Gruffydd.

Llyr Gruffydd
BBC

'Letting a rural school rot'

On the presumption against the closure of rural schools, UKIP's Michelle Brown asks what action would the cabinet secretary take if she "suspected a local authority was letting a rural school rot in order to make the case for closure stronger?"

Kirsty Williams refers again to the ongoing consultation.

Michelle Brown
BBC

'Betrayal' of students

Conservative Darren Millar describes the announcement yesterday that maximum tuition fees at universities in Wales will rise in line with inflation to £9,295 from autumn 2018, and that the fees will continue to be linked to inflation for the next three years, as a "betrayal" of students.

"Labour cannot be trusted," he claims.

He also accuses the education secretary of watering down her promise for smaller class sizes, saying it's now a "meaningless promise".

Kirsty Williams insists the promise was to move to smaller class sizes "starting with the largest classes" and that it is important for raising standards.

Darren Millar
BBC

Questions without notice to the Cabinet Secretary

The Llywydd calls party spokespeople to ask questions without notice to the Cabinet Secretary after Question 2.

Questions
BBC

Presumption against the closure of rural schools

Kirsty Williams reminds AMs that she recently launched a consultation on introducing a presumption against the closure of rural schools.

Support for rural schools

The first of the tabled questions today is by Janet Finch-Saunders (Aberconwy): Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on Welsh Government support for rural schools?

Janet Finch-Saunders
BBC

Welcome back to Senedd Live

Plenary begins with questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Education, Kirsty Williams.

Kirsty Williams
BBC

Back at 1.30pm

The members are now meeting in private.

Senedd Live will be back at 1.30pm for Plenary.

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'Severely limited' funding for training?

The Welsh Government has also provided funding for training for specialist perinatal training in 2016-17 at a total cost of £9,750.

Hefin David asks whether that is "severely limited".

Mr Gething replies, "in terms of health boards' sums of money it's not huge, but the challenge is what you do and how you can provide that training".

Hefin David
BBC

Distances to access a mother and baby unit

"A situation where mothers are having to travel long distances to access a mother and baby unit is unacceptable," says Llyr Gruffydd.

Mr Gething replies, "the reality is that mothers right across the UK will likely need to travel a distance to get to a mother and baby unit".

Llyr Gruffydd
BBC

'It brings home the importance of getting these services right'

Darren Millar refers to the newborn baby found in a bus shelter in Towyn, Conwy county in his constituency.

He says, "I've no idea of the frame of mind of the mum of that newborn... She may well have benefitted from some support, may well have been looking for some support during her pregnancy and for whatever reason hasn't been able to achieve that.

"It brings home the importance of getting these services right".

Darren Millar
BBC