Tories shows dearth of ambition for Wales


Plaid Cymru’s Hywel Williams MP has expressed his disgust following a Tory MP’s decision to close down a debate on the future of job search and creation services in Wales.

Mr Williams today used a Ten Minute Rule Bill to propose the devolution of the Jobcentre Plus network to the Welsh Government. The debate was held on the floor of the House of Commons. The overwhelming majority of Labour MPs from Wales also chose to abstain.

Mr Williams argued that by integrating these services into the Welsh Government’s remit, then learning, skills and employment would be treated more holistically and make accountability stronger.

Plaid’s Hywel Williams MP said:

“Ten minute rule bills are important because they enable us to have an open debate on the floor of the House of Commons.

“Very rarely are we able to debate initiatives such as this which could so help the Welsh economy.

“Today the Tories shot down that opportunity.

“Save for a few brave and upright members, Labour’s decision to abstain on the vote also shows exactly where their priorities lie. They refused to take responsibility for a key employment issue.

“This thoughtless, wrecking action will now mean that we cannot have a second reading for this bill - although we will continue to campaign for this change.

“The Tories were more intent on attacking the Welsh government than engaging in an open discussion. This is not a bureaucratic change being offered but a coherent reorganisation.

“Devolving the JobCentre Plus network is a common sense proposal. The Welsh government already has responsibility for the economy under the Business, Enterprise, Technology and Science portfolio – including the job search provision within this would help us to develop a holistic solution to employment issues.

“Plaid offers constructive opportunities while the Tories have proved they have a dearth of ambition for Wales and its economy.”