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Speaker of the Parliament Vehviläinen: Coronavirus will be taken into account in the Parliament’s autumn term

Published 8/19/2020 5:00 PM
Modified 8/19/2020 6:14 PM

Speaker of the Parliament Vehviläinen: Coronavirus will be taken into account in the Parliament’s autumn term

​​According to Speaker of the Parliament Anu Vehviläinen, the restrictive measures adopted in the Parliament last spring should stay in place in the autumn term. The risk persists as new coronavirus infections are detected daily in Finland. The aim of these measures is to ensure the Parliament’s ability to function in all circumstances.
 
Parliament’s corona response leadership group discussed the autumn term in its meeting on 18 August. The group does not make decisions regarding the work in the Plenary Hall as those decisions are made by the Speaker’s Council. The Council will convene on 1 September.
 
Speaker of the Parliament noted that the parliamentary groups had previously agreed that only 50 members of the Parliament could be present in the Plenary Hall at any given time. The Speaker’s Council together with the parliamentary groups will now explore the possibility to increase this number. They are expected to adopt a position on this issue next week. MPs would then know beforehand how the work will be organised in the Plenary Hall in the autumn term which begins on 1 September.
 
The Parliament focused on legislation related to the coronavirus in its spring term. The Parliament should now be able to catch up with other pending issues before handling the draft budget. “As Speaker of the Parliament, I think it is important that we also handle issues non-related to the coronavirus in the autumn term. The Speaker’s Council will make the decision on this”, Speaker of the Parliament Vehviläinen says. 
 
In a press briefing on Tuesday 18 August, Speaker of the Parliament also mentioned a potential temporary change in the rules of procedure. In September, Constitutional Law Committee will discuss enabling remote voting in plenary sessions.
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