Carmichael calls for government clarity on tariff-free trading and PDO protection for farmers

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, today challenged the government to confirm whether farmers and crofters would maintain their current level of access to the EU in a future trade deal. Speaking during an urgent debate on the fourth round of trade negotiations with the EU, Mr Carmichael highlighted the importance of tariff-free access to EU markets and protected designation of origin (PDO) status under a future trade deal. In her response, the Paymaster General, Penny Mordaunt, did not confirm if full access for farmers would be continued.

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Carmichael recognises Carers’ Week

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has recognised the role of carers in the Northern Isles and across the country as part of Carers’ Week 2020.  Carers’ Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges unpaid carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK.  This year’s theme is Make Caring Visible and runs from 8 to 14 June.  Established by Carers UK 26 years ago, the annual awareness campaign celebrates and recognises the vital contribution made by the UK’s 6.5 million carers.

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Rees-Mogg must follow through on promises to look at voting rights for carers

Tonight the Liberal Democrats have secured assurances from the Leader of the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg, that proxy voting rights will be considered for MPs who are carers or living with those who are shielding. 

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World Ocean Day a reminder of need for action on plastic pollution – Carmichael

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has called for further action to tackle plastic pollution today on World Ocean Day. Highlighting the Plastic Pollution Bill he introduced in 2019, Mr Carmichael noted recent information released on marine animals washed up on the shoreline in the North of Scotland and the Northern Isles, whose stomachs were filled with marine plastic.

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Carmichael calls for Food Standards Commission

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has called for the creation of a Food Standards Commission in light of reports that food produced to a lower standard could be brought in from the United States under a future trade deal, undercutting UK farmers and crofters. Ministers have previously denied that “chlorinated chicken” and other low-cost foods could be allowed in a new trade deal, but press reports on Thursday suggested that the government plans to open up the UK market under a “dual tariff” scheme.

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Government must go further with expanded access to BNO passports for Hong Kong – Carmichael

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, yesterday welcomed announcements that the UK would offer expanded visa rights to British National (Overseas) passport holders in Hong Kong, but called on the government to take further steps to support Hongkongers. After over a year of protests in Hong Kong against political encroachment by Beijing, the Chinese National Assembly is preparing to force a national security law on the autonomous territory.

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End to virtual Parliament unacceptable and dangerous for public health – Carmichael

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has spoken out against the government’s imposition of an end to the virtual Parliament system created for the coronavirus pandemic. In recent weeks MPs have been able to participate remotely in parliamentary proceedings, allowing those in vulnerable categories and those who would need to travel long distances to work from home in line with public health advice. An amendment aimed at restoring remote voting for those shielding was rejected by 37 votes.

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Latest Northern Isles unemployment claimant figures are a warning not to be ignored— Carmichael

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael has responded to the latest unemployment claimant figures which show a doubling in claimants for April by comparison to the previous year in the Northern Isles.  The figures published show 825 claimants in Orkney and Shetland as of April 2020, representing 3% of the 16-64 population.  This figure is 430 higher than April last year and an increase of 260 from March.  The equivalent claimant rate for the UK was 5.1%.

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Carmichael joins urgent cross-party call to extend self-employed support

Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, has joined a cross-party letter to the Chancellor including over 100 MPs, asking that the Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) be extended. In the letter MPs welcome the support given to date, but note that while the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is confirmed to continue until November, SEISS is currently scheduled to end this weekend. The scheme has so far supported over 2 million self-employed workers, with claims so far to the value of £6bn.

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Only essential travel to the isles the right message – Wishart and Carmichael respond to Sturgeon announcement

Isles representatives, Beatrice Wishart MSP and Alistair Carmichael MP, have today welcomed a reminder from the First Minister that people should not visit the Scottish islands except for essential travel.

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