LABOUR are facing criticism after not a single one of their backbench MPs put themselves forward to speak in a debate on the cost of living – with accusations they were sitting in the tea room instead.

Speaking in the House of Commons yesterday, the SNP’s deputy leader Mhairi Black opened a debate on the cost of living, saying it was the result of a UK Government which “shamed the sick and disabled”.

Black was also told off for saying that the Tories spent most of their time “p**hed” at parties in No 10.

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At the beginning of her speech, she also noted: “As far as I’m aware there is only one Conservative MP wanting to talk and not a single Labour backbencher wanting to talk on this.”

Cries of “they don’t care” could be heard from the SNP backbenches. SNP MP Peter Grant then later tweeted: “Astonishing that there’s not a single Labour backbench MP who has put their name down to speak in a debate on the cost of living.

“And it’s not because they’re busy elsewhere, there’s dozens of them in the tea room.”

Several other MPs did speak, including Labour’s shadow secretary of state for Scotland and sole MP north of the Border Ian Murray.

Murray said he was “pleased” to be able to speak in the debate as he spoke of the impact the cost of living crisis has had on his constituents in Edinburgh South.

Douglas Ross was also among those to speak. He took aim at the SNP as he said that “three-quarters” of the party’s MPs had not shown for the debate on the cost of living.