Carmichael highlights accountant with 75% of clients unable to access support in Finance Bill speech

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has highlighted the continuing plight of small businesses in the isles during a debate last night on the government’s Finance Bill. Speaking remotely during the session, Mr Carmichael highlighted the example of an accountant in his constituency who estimated that 75% of his clients were unable to access support through government schemes.

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Carmichael challenges Chancellor to consider Universal Basic Income for coronavirus crisis

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, today challenged the Chancellor to consider the possibility of a Universal Basic Income for the duration of the coronavirus crisis. Speaking in a virtual session of Parliament following a statement by the Chancellor on further government action to support the economy and business, Mr Carmichael highlighted the concerns of self-employed and small business owners in his Northern Isles constituency and suggested that a universal support scheme would boost confidence for those falling through the cracks.

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Carmichael leads cross-party campaign to support local press

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has led a campaign to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care and the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, asking that they support local and independent media through an increased share of public health communications spending. The letter has been backed by 40 MPs from across Parliament, including former Cabinet ministers and shadow ministers, and highlights the importance of local press in communicating trustworthy information and the financial strain faced by local journalists in light of the coronavirus.

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Earth Day a chance to reflect on future priorities for the environment – Carmichael

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has today (Wednesday 22 April, Earth Day) highlighted the need to revisit legislation on plastic pollution after the coronavirus crisis. Mr Carmichael was planning to reintroduce a Bill on plastic pollution on this day before the crisis hit. Last week the government announced that it would delay by six months the ban on plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds in England which was supposed to be implemented this month.

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Carmichael joins cross-party call for motor insurance rebates

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has called for action to be taken on motor insurance companies so that customers are repaid some or, where appropriate, all premiums. Mr Carmichael joined a cross-party letter to the Treasury, initiated by Lib Dem MP Jamie Stone and signed by 27 MPs from 7 political parties, in response to the 50% drop in insurance claims and 75% decrease in driving during lockdown. Insurance companies are set to make a £1 billion profit from motorists who cannot drive at the moment. The letter also acknowledges that insurance companies would not make a loss from this necessary and temporary adjustment.

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Political decision to ignore EU procurement scheme a “self-inflicted wound” – Carmichael

Responding to news that Foreign Office official Sir Simon McDonald has admitted the government’s failure to join an EU bulk-buying scheme was a ‘political’ decision, Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Alistair Carmichael, has called the allegation “deeply concerning”. Despite government claims that the UK’s absence was due to a miscommunication, the FCO permanent undersecretary said: “It was a political decision. The UK mission (UKREP) briefed ministers about what was available, what was on offer and the decision is known.”

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Carmichael calls on UK insurers to review coronavirus response

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has written to the Association of British Insurers (ABI), calling for them to review the response of insurance companies to the coronavirus crisis. The letter, backed by Scottish Liberal Democrat MPs and MSPs, highlights the concerns of local businesses, many of which face bankruptcy within weeks due to business disruption from the coronavirus, and calls for closer cooperation.

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Self-employed support rethink needed now – Carmichael

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has today called on the government to make urgent changes to the planned support for self-employed people. Concerns have been raised in recent weeks that the support measures announced by the Chancellor have significant gaps, while the Scottish Government has announced that £100m will be made available to protect self-employed people and viable SME businesses in distress due to COVID-19.

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Carmichael responds to virtual House of Commons plan

Responding to news of the approval of a virtual House of Commons working procedure, Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael said:

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Release of guidance on immigration policy a reminder of risks to key workers – Carmichael

Reacting to the release of guidance on the government’s immigration policy, Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has voiced disappointment at the lack of change in the light of the coronavirus crisis. Highlighting the impact immigrants have had in the fight against coronavirus, Mr Carmichael called on the government to rethink its plans and support key workers.

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