Integration with Police Scotland moves closer.
The Scottish Parliament has approved the Railway Policing (Scotland) Bill in principle after a stage one debate.
Approval follows the Justice Committee’s report last week which supported the Bill’s plans to integrate the British Transport Police (BTP) in Scotland into Police Scotland, creating a more effective, joined-up police service on Scotland’s railways.
Transport Minister Humza Yousaf said:
“I am very pleased to have been able to secure approval in principle for the railway policing bill following a positive report from the Justice Committee last week.
“Integrating the BTP in Scotland into Police Scotland will further enhance the safety of passengers and railway staff and our plans will provide railway policing which is more accountable to the people of Scotland.
“The Bill will also provide more joined up service across our key infrastructure and with local community policing.”
Justice Secretary Michael Matheson added:
“Police Scotland have made clear that specialist railway policing expertise and capacity will be maintained and that there will be improved access to wider support facilities and specialist equipment.
“We remain committed to providing a ‘triple-lock guarantee’ that secures the jobs, pay and pension conditions for over 280 railway policing officers and staff in Scotland and will be able to firm up details in the coming weeks as the Bill moves forward.
“Today’s vote takes us a step closer to realising our plans to integrate the British Transport Police in Scotland into Police Scotland, which will ensure that railway policing in Scotland is accountable, through the Chief Constable and the Scottish Police Authority, to the people of Scotland.”