Monday (7th March 2016)
On Monday, Marion travelled to London for parliamentary business, including lending support to the FairFuelUK campaign. FairFuelUK is the award winning Public Affairs Campaign that fights for lower fuel duty and fairer more transparent pricing at the pumps.
Tuesday (8th March 2016)
Wednesday (9th March 2016)
On Wednesday, Marion questioned the Minister for the Cabinet Office on the Government’s anti-advocacy policy which would disallow bodies which receive government grants, including charities, from attempting to influence government policy.
This would prevent the use of funding to inform public policy and bans organisations also from discussing issues related to the work funded by the grant with government officials or parliamentarians.
This means that the expertise, knowledge and insight from these bodies are removed from the policy making process. It is essential that these benefits are retained in government and reflected in policy.
John Bercow, Speaker of the House:
Last but not least, I call Marion Fellows.
Thank you, Mr Speaker. Almost two thirds of people in Scotland want to see charities speaking up for those affected by Government policies, which is why the Scottish Government and the Scottish National Party are against the new anti-advocacy clause. Will the Minister commit to assessing the impact it will have on Scottish charities?
Matthew Hancock, Minister of the Cabinet Office & Paymaster General, refused to provide the request commitment:
Once again, we have a request from the SNP for hard-working people to pay their taxes and for those taxes then to be used to lobby the very Government that are giving out the grants. That is wrong in principle. We have been using this clause in practice for more than a year and because it was working well we have extended it across government.
Thursday (10th March 2016)
Marion was delighted to appear on the Sunday Post Politics Podcast on Thursday, discussing PMQs, the Scottish whisky industry and the new All-Party Parliamentary Group on encouraging older women into politics and public life.
Friday (11th March 2016)
Friday was a very busy day back in the constituency for Marion, kicking off with the Coffee with a Cop event at Aroma coffee shop in Wishaw. This was a fantastic opportunity to meet members of the local police staff in an informal and accessible setting.
In the early afternoon, Marion met with Fiona Gallagher of Basics for Babies to discuss the fantastic work the project does in providing the most basic essentials for vulnerable babies and young children in the local community.
Later in the day, Marion held a Poverty Action Discussion Forum, bringing together organisations from the local community to discuss poverty tackling measures, build relationships, and look towards working together in the fight against poverty in Motherwell and Wishaw.
Also on Friday, members of Marion’s staff were at Theo’s Cafe in Orbiston to hold her monthly Orbiston Neighbourhood Centre surgery.
Saturday (12th March 2016)
On Saturday and Sunday, Marion attended the fantastic SNP Spring Conference at the SECC in Glasgow.
Sunday (13th March 2016)