Labour call for Senate of the Nations and Regions to replace the House of Lords
The Labour party have called for a new Senate of the Nations and Regions to replace the House of Lords.
The new proposals launched by Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar noted that the party recognised that “there is demand for change” in every nation and region of the UK.
In a speech hosted by the Fabian Society at Westminster, he called for “a legal duty to cooperate” between governments, and new joint governance councils.
“The House of Lords, in its current form, as an institution has no place in 21st century politics,” he said.
“It is unacceptable, and has been for far too long, to have unelected representatives wielding such power.
“The House of Lords must be abolished and replaced with an institution which better reflects the make-up and the identity of the United Kingdom.”
Anas Sarwar said the elected senate would be “more reflective of modern Britain”.
“Members should be directly elected, with a mandate to represent their nation or region,” he said.
“And we must learn from international best practice so that our smallest regions, including those within Scotland, have a strong voice in this new institution.
“This bold reform would not only deliver better governance, but ensure that those wielding power on behalf of the people are chosen by the people – and sit in an institution which better reflects the diversity of this country.”
The Glasgow MSP said that devolution was currently “being undermined by bad actors – the SNP and the Tories”.
“But we can introduce change that will require more collaboration and undo the damage inflicted by the SNP and Tories,” he said.
Mr Sarwar said the joint governance councils “would be designed to heal the bad relationship that exists today and provide a constructive forum for dispute resolution”.
He said: “Too often, the current UK Government keeps the Scottish Government in the dark. Too often the current Scottish Government deliberately seeks disagreement with the UK Government.
“This does not lead to good governance – it undermines the Union and the Tories and the SNP do it day in, day out.”
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.