Parliamentary Secretary

Parliamentary Secretary

A Parliamentary Secretary is a member of a Parliament in the Westminster system who assists a more senior minister with their duties.

In the parliamentary systems of several Commonwealth countries, such as the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia, it is customary for the prime minister to appoint parliamentary secretaries (in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, "parliamentary assistants") from their political party in parliament to assist cabinet ministers with their work. The role of parliamentary secretaries has varied under different prime ministers. Originally, the post was used as a training ground for future ministers.

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, Parliamentary Secretary (in full, usually Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in those departments headed by a Secretary of State) is the third level of government minister, below Minister of State and Secretary of State (or another minister of Secretary of State rank, such as the Chancellor of the Exchequer). Not all departments have all three levels of minister.

A Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS), on the other hand, is a Member of Parliament who acts as an unpaid assistant to an individual minister, but has no ministerial role, although they are expected to support the government at all times.

Canada

During Jean Chrétien's term as Prime Minister of Canada, parliamentary secretaries were set to two-year terms and the post was used as a reward for weary backbenchers. Their duty was to answer questions and table reports on behalf of ministers when they were unable to be present in the house.

Chrétien's successor as Canadian Prime Minister, Paul Martin, when sworn-in 2003, promised a new role for parliamentary secretaries. They would now be sworn into the privy council giving them access to some secret documents, be allowed to attend Canadian Cabinet meetings and be assigned specific files by ministers. This replaced the positions of Secretaries of State which had been in practice under Chrétien.

* List of Parliamentary Secretaries of Canada
* List of current Parliamentary Secretaries of Canada

Republic of Ireland

In the Irish Free State, the Ministers and Secretaries Act of 1924 created the post of Parliamentary Secretary, originally limited to seven holders. In 1978, the office was superseded in the Republic of Ireland by the office of Minister of State.

See also:
*Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Education


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • parliamentary secretary — ˌparliamentary ˈsecretary 7 [parliamentary secretary] noun a Member of Parliament who works in a government department below the minister compare ↑parliamentary private secretary, ↑parliamentary undersecretary …   Useful english dictionary

  • parliamentary secretary — n (in Britain) a Member of Parliament working in a government job immediately below a minister who is not a Secretary of State. Compare Parliamentary Private Secretary, parliamentary under secretary of state. * * * …   Universalium

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport — was a junior position at the British Ministry of Transport. The office was renamed Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of War Transport in 1941, but resumed its former name at the end of the Second World War.Parliamentary Secretaries to the… …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Pensions — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Pensions was a junior Ministerial office at Parliamentary Secretary rank in the United Kingdom Government, supporting the Minister for Pensions. It was established in 1916 and filled intermittently… …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Lands (Ireland) — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Lands or Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Lands Fisheries was a parliamentary secretarial post in the Government of Ireland on a number of occasions throughout the history of the Irish… …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education was a junior ministerial office in the United Kingdom Government.In 1899 the Board of Education Act abolished the Committee of the Privy Council which had been responsible for education… …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Trade in the United Kingdom was a member of Parliament assigned to assist the Board of Trade and its President with administration and liaison with Parliament. It replaced the Vice President of the… …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries was a junior ministerial office in the British government, serving under the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries. The title changed to Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Justice (Ireland) — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Justice was a parliamentary secretarial post in the Government of Ireland on a number of occasions throughout the history of the Irish government. The incumbent worked together with the senior… …   Wikipedia

  • Parliamentary Secretary to the Local Government Board — The Parliamentary Secretary to the Local Government Board was a ministerial post in the United Kingdom, established in 1871 and subordinate to the President of the Local Government Board. The Local Government Board itself was established in 1871… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”