22/02/2017 Prime Minister's Questions


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22/02/2017

Coverage of questions in the House of Commons to Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday 22 February.


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We work of all our partners to ensure a and the protection of the

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people is taking place. Questions to the Prime Minister.

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Mr Speaker, last year the campaign group Fighting Cuts at the hospital

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were due to deliver a strong petition to Downing Street, but they

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were turned away at the gates and told, today is not a good day.

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Comeback after Thursday. How can the Prime Minister justify this

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disgraceful dismissal of the people of Corb Lund? -- Copeland. The

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petition was indeed delivered and accepted by Downing Street yesterday

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so I suggest to the honourable lady she considers what she said in her

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question, but I am aware of the issues raised around West Cumberland

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Hospital, and I am aware of those because the very good Conservative

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candidate in Copeland, Trudy Harrison, has indeed raise those

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issues with me, and made very clear she wants to see no downgrading of

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services at West Cumberland Hospital, she has made that clear to

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me and the health ministers. Thank you, Mr Speaker. I have constituents

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concerned about the new funding formula. Can I be assured that when

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deciding on funding for our schools we will look at costs such as the

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apprenticeship levy and things like that to ensure they have the money

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they need to educate our children? I thank my honourable friend for

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raising this. The question of schools funding and the system we

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have is important. I think the current system is unfair, not

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transparent and out of date and that has been the general view for some

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time now. The problem is it cannot support the aspiration of all our

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children to get a great education and we do indeed want to see

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children being able to get the education they deserve that ensures

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they can go as far as their talent and hard work take them. The Labour

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Government did nothing to address the funding system and we are

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looking at that funding system. It is... It is a consultation and I am

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sure the comments my honourable friend has raised will be noted by

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the Secretary of State for Education. Thank you, Mr Speaker.

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When hospitals are struggling to provide essential care, why is the

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Prime Minister's Government cutting the number of beds in our National

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Health Service? Thanks to the medical advances, the use of

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technology, the quality of care, what we see in hospital stays is

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actually the average length of time for staying in hospital has

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virtually halved since the year 2000. Let's actually look at

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Labour's record on this issue. In the last six years of the last

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Labour Government, 25,000 hospital beds were cut, but we don't even

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need to go as far back as that. Let's just look at what was Labour's

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policy before the last election. Because before the last election,

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the Right Honourable member, a former Shadow Health Secretary,

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said, what I would cut our hospital beds. Labour policy to cut hospital

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beds. Mr Speaker, back in 2010 there was the highest ever level of

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satisfaction with the health service delivered by a Labour Government.

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The BMA tells us, Mr Speaker, that is doctors, that 15,000 beds have

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been cut in the last six years, the equivalent of 24 hospitals, and as a

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result we have longer waiting times in A, record charges and more

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people on waiting lists. The Prime Minister claims the NHS is getting

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the money it needs, so why is it one in six of A units in England are

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set for closure or downgrading? I will tell the honourable gentleman

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what is happening and what has been happening since 2010 in A 1500

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more emergency care doctors, which includes more Andrew Neil

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consultants, 2400 more paramedics, -- more emergency consultants. What

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the NHS... He speaks about what the NHS needs and what it needs is more

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doctors and we are giving it more doctors. What it needs is more

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funding and we are giving it more funding. What it does not need is a

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bankrupt economy, which is exactly what Labour would give it. Mr

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Speaker, I asked the Prime Minister by one in six A units are

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currently set for closure or downgrading. She did not answer. One

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of the problems, and she well knows this, is that ?4.6 billion cut the

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social care which has a knock-on effect, and her friend, the Tory

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chair of the Local Government Association, Lord Porter, has said,

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and I quote, "Extra council tax income will not bring in anywhere

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near enough money to alleviate the growing pressure on social care. Two

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weeks ago -- social care." Two weeks ago we found out about the

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sweetheart deal with Tory Surrey. When will the other 151 social

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department in England get the same as the Surrey deal? The right

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honourable gentleman refers to the questions he asks me about Surrey

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County Council two weeks ago. Those claims were utterly destroyed the

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same afternoon. So rather than asking the same question, he should

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stand up and apologise. Mr Speaker, far from apologising it is the Prime

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Minister who ought to be reading her correspondence and answering the

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letter from 62 council leaders representing social services

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authorities who want to know if they are going to get the same deal as

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Surrey, as they are grappling with a crisis that has left over 1 million

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people not getting the social care they need. Mr Speaker, we opposed

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the Tory cuts in the NHS which involved scrapping of nurses'

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bursaries because we believed it would dissuade people from entering

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training. We were told it would create an extra 10,000 training

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places in this Parliament. Has this target be met? There are 10,000 more

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training places available for nurses in the NHS, but the right honourable

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gentleman talks about the amount of money being spent on the NHS. It is

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this Conservative Government that is putting the extra funding into the

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NHS, and I remind the right honourable gentleman, I remind the

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right honourable gentleman that we are spending ?1.3 billion more on

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the NHS this year than Labour planned to do if they had won the

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election. Mr Speaker, my questions were about the social services

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funding to pay for social care. No answer. My questions were about the

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number of nurse training places being brought in. No answer. In

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reality, 10,000 fewer places have been filled because there are fewer

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applications. There is a problem in building up for the future. In

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addition, the Royal College of Midwives estimate is shortage of

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3500 midwives in England, and the Royal College of Nursing warned the

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nursing workforce is in crisis. If fewer nurses graduate in 2020 it

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will exacerbate what is already an unsustainable situation. Will the

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Prime Minister at least commit herself to reinstating the nurses'

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bursary? He asked me a question about nurses' training places which

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I answered. I have to say to him, if he doesn't like the answer he gets,

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he cannot just carry on asking the same question. If I have answered it

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previously. He is talking about all these issues in relation to what is

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happening in the NHS. Let's just look at what is happening in the

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NHS. We have 1800 more midwives in the NHS since 2010. We have more

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people being seen in A since 2010. We have more operations every week

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in the NHS. Our NHS staff are working hard, providing a quality of

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care for patients up and down the country. What they do not need is a

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Labour Party policy that leads to a bankrupt economy, because Labour's

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policy, you spend money on everything which means you bankrupt

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the economy, and have no money to spend on anything. That does not

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help doctors and nurses, it does not help patients, it does not help the

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NHS and it does not help ordinary working families up and down this

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country. Mr Speaker, yes, let's look at the National Health Service.

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Let's thank all those that work so hard in our National Health Service,

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but recognise the pressures they are under. Today the married to

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re-foundation trust finds nurses are so overstretched they cannot provide

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the high care needed for patients at the very end of their lives -- the

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Marie Curie Foundation. It prevents patients from having the dignity of

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dying at home. There is a nursing shortage and something should be

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done about it such as reinstating the nurses' bursary. Mr Speaker, her

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Government has put the NHS and social care in the state of

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emergency. Nine out of ten NHS trusts are unsafe. 18,000 patients

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per week are waiting. Mr Speaker, I repeat the figure. 18,000 patients a

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week are waiting on trolleys in hospital corridors. 1.2 million of

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them very dependent... Mr Speaker, it seems to me that some members do

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not want to be concerned about the fact there are 1.2 million elderly

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people not getting the care that they need. The legacy of her

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Government will be blighting our NHS for decades. There are hospitals,

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fewer A departments, fewer nurses and fewer people getting the care

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they need. We need a Government that puts the NHS first, and will invest

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in our NHS. First of all I have to say to the right honourable

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gentleman that he should consider correcting the record, because 54%

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of hospital trusts are considered good or outstanding. Quite different

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from the figure he has shown. Secondly, I will take no lessons on

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the NHS from the party... Oh, the deputy leader of the Labour Party

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says we should take lessons on the NHS. I will not take any lessons

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from the party that presided over met staff's hospital, and what

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happened at that hospital. -- Midstaff. They say we should learn

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lessons. I tell you who should learn lessons. The Labour Party, who still

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fail to recognise that if you are going to fund the NHS, and we are

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putting more money in - there are more doctors, more operations, more

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hospitals. If you're going to fund the NHS you need a strong economy.

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Now we know that Labour have a different sort of phrase for their

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approach to these things. Remember they used to speak about boom and

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bust. Now it is borrow and bankrupt. We must get through backbenchers'

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questions and the answers to them. Brendan Cox will meet with the

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Duchess of Cornwall to launch plans to bring communities together over

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the weekend of the 17th and 18th of June to mark the first anniversary

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of our colleague's death. It is for more than 10 million people across

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the country to come together as communities and neighbours for

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events such as student parties and picnics and bake off. Will the Prime

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Minister join me and agree that such event is a moment of national

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reflection but also celebration in our communities and it will be a

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fitting tribute to Jo? And as she herself said it will remind us that

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we have far more common with ourselves than things that divide

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us. I am happy to agree with him that what is becoming known as the

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great get-together is a fitting and important tribute to our late

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colleague Jo Cox and I would like to commend her husband Brendan and I am

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sure everybody would like to do so, for the work he has done. It is

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important we remember there is more that brings us together than divides

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us. This opportunity at this point of national reflection and

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celebration of the strength of our communities is important as we face

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the future together. We stand at momentous times for this country and

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it is important we remember that being united makes us strong, we

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should recognise the things that unite us as a country and as the

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people, the bonds that we shared together, and this is a very fitting

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tribute to our late colleague. In recent days the Prime Minister has

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said that it is a key personal commitment to transform the way that

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domestic violence is tackled. It is hugely welcome that she has called

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for ideas about how the treatment of victims can be improved and more

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convictions secured against abusers. Combating violence against women and

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preventing domestic violence is the aim of the Istanbul convention which

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the UK has yet to ratify. Does she agree with members across this house

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that the convention should be ratified as a priority? He has

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raised a particularly important subject. It is one that I take

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particularly seriously. I worked very hard on it as Home Secretary

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and I continue to do so as Prime Minister. Over 400,000 victims of

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sexual violence in the last year. We signed up to the Istanbul convention

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and are committed to ratifying it and that is why we supported the

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members bill in principal at second reading and that committee stage.

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The measures we have in place in many ways go further than the

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convention but I am very clear that we need to maintain this momentum

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and that is why I am setting up a ministerial working group to look at

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the legislation and how we can provide good support for victims and

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to look at the possibility of a domestic violence act in the future.

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This Friday the Commons will consider a bill on the Istanbul

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convention and government ministers have been working very hard with my

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colleague who has cross-party support for her bell. Given the

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importance of this issue and the Prime Minister's personal commitment

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she has outlined again today will she encourage members to support the

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bill and discourage any attempts to use Parliamentary tactics to stop

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it? I am very happy to join him in that. The minister for vulnerability

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has had a number of constructive discussions with the member for

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Banff and Buchan and tabled mutually agreed amendments which the

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government will be voting for this Friday and I hope that all born

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Friday will be supporting those measures. It is an important bill

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which the government has been supporting and I hope it will they

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support across all parts of this house. Residents in the village of

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highly in my constituency are concerned by the 4000 homes proposed

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under the Greater Manchester spatial framework more than doubling the

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size of that village. What assurances can she give to my

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constituents that the green belt is safe with this government? I am

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happy to give that commitment. The government is very clear that the

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green belt must be protected. Very clear that boundary should only be

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altered when local authorities have fully examined all other reasonable

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options and if they go down that route they should compensate by

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improving the quality or accessibility of the remaining green

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belt land so that can be enjoyed. I know the particular issue he has

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raised and I believe the framework led to quite a number of responses.

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There was a lot of interest in the consultation. I am sure all those

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views will be taken into account. Last week the all-party group for

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children of alcoholics launched a manifesto for change. 2.5 million

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children are growing up in the home of a problem drinker. I did as well.

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These children are twice as likely to have problems at school, three

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times as likely to commit suicide, four times more likely to become an

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alcoholic yet 138 local authorities have no plan to support these

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children. All the Prime Minister work with the all-party group to

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establish the first ever government strategy to tackle both hidden

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problem that blight the lives of millions? She has raised an

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important issue and I know she recently spoke very movingly about

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her experience and I am sure members recognise the devastating impact

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that addiction can have on individuals and their families. This

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is an important issue for her to raise. It is unacceptable that

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children bear the brunt of their parents' condition. It is important

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than the government is committed to working with MPs and health

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professionals and those affected to reduce the harm of addiction and

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give people the support they need and we will be looking carefully at

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the proposal she has raised. Question nine. It is absolutely

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appalling when people tried to make a business out of dragging our brave

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troops through the courts. In the case of Northern Ireland 90% of

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deaths were caused by terrorists and it is essential the justice system

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reflects this. It would be wrong to treat terrorists more favourably

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than soldiers or police officers and that is why as part of her work to

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bring forward the Stormont House bill we will make sure that

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investigate of bodies are fair, balanced and proportionate soul

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veterans are not unfairly treated or disproportionately investigated. It

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does not go as far as I and others would like. There is no prospect of

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new credible evidence coming forward against our veterans of the troubles

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up to 40 years after the event and yet people are starting to use the

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same techniques in Northern Ireland against them as were used against

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veterans of Iraq. Surely the answer has to be a statute of limitations

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preventing the prosecution of veterans to do with matters that

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concerned prior to the date of the Belfast Agreement. As he knows this

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is an issue that we are looking at as part of the Stormont House

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agreement. We are ensuring that the investigative bodies responsible for

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looking at depths during the troubles will operate in a fair

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balanced and proportionate manner. We want cases to be considered in

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chronological order. We are going to be consulting fully on these

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proposals because we want to make sure we get this right. The new

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local housing allowance cap for social tenants when introduced in

:22:35.:22:40.

2019 will hit people on low income in my constituency really hard. In

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Maidenhead the allowance will often exceed the average rent but in

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Merthyr Tydfil not so. This will mean that tenants including many

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older be bought will be expected to find almost ?500 a year towards the

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rent. Will she acts to introduce clear guidance to at the very least

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exempt older people from these cuts and ensure that the local housing

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allowances in line with local rents? Yes. I believe local authorities are

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in a position, they have a fun they can exercise discretion in relation

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to this matter. There will be incidences across the country and

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there were some steps taken to ensure that particularly vulnerable

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people were not affected as you suggest. The lack of large-scale

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vaccine manufacturing has been described for our country as a

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national security issue. Which will take many years to build up. Will

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she look into what more the government can do to address this

:23:56.:23:59.

highly critical health and defence concerned? She is right to raise

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this in the context she has. The government takes it very seriously.

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Being able to ensure we can scale up vaccine production in the event of a

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pandemic is very important to national security. The precise

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details are confidential but I can assure her we have provisions in

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place to make sure that urgently needed vaccines are available in the

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UK at short notice including in the event of pandemic. As a contingency

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we are funding a ?10 million competition to establish a world

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leading centre on vaccine manufacturing but it is only part of

:24:40.:24:43.

the picture because we have one of the most successful vaccination

:24:44.:24:47.

programmes in the world backed up by ?300 million. Last night Bristol

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council said its budget very difficult decisions very difficult

:24:57.:24:59.

because of the abject failure of the previous murmur to get a grip on the

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finances. It has taken a Labour mayor to face up to the challenge

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but government cuts are making his job almost impossible and it is

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doing more with less. We did our bit, will the Prime Minister meet

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with the mayor of Bristol to discuss the funding deal that the people of

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Bristol deserve? I understand the Communities Secretary has had such a

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meeting to discuss the issues she raised. 17 years ago my constituent

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received a phone call that no parent should ever have to take. The collar

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told them that their daughter Kirsty, who was backpacking in

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Thailand, had been brutally murdered. The tie as warranties are

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due to close the investigation into her murder but as yet her case

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remains unsolved, her killer remains free and her parents have not

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justice or closure. Can I ask her to push the Thai authorities to use DNA

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techniques to bring the killer to justice, to endeavour to provide

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more support to families who have lost loved ones abroad and finally

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to ensure that Kirsty's personal effects are at last returned home to

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her parents from Thailand? I am sure the whole house would offer

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condolences to the family and recognising the trauma they have

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been through as a result of the killing of their daughter. It is

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obviously not for the British government to interfere with police

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investigations that take place in another country but I understand the

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Foreign Office has been providing support and our embassy in Bangkok

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will continue to raise these issues as it has been with the Thai

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government and I am sure the Foreign Office will keep him updated. In the

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Lancaster house speech she said of a future trade agreement with the EU

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that no deal for Britain is better than a bad deal for Britain. In the

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spirit of consistency will that appeal to any future trade goals she

:27:20.:27:24.

Asians with the US? By Mike President Trump has said that

:27:25.:27:31.

America comes first -- negotations. We will be ensuring when we

:27:32.:27:36.

negotiate trade deals they will be good deals for the UK. In the same

:27:37.:27:45.

sex marriage act we took the power subject to consultation to give

:27:46.:27:52.

humanists in England and Wales the opportunity to celebrate marriages

:27:53.:27:56.

as they do in Scotland. We have had the consultation with 90% approval

:27:57.:27:59.

and there has been referenced in the Law Commission which has concluded.

:28:00.:28:03.

And she gave her attention to laying there is order and giving humanists

:28:04.:28:08.

same rights in England as they enjoy in Scotland? This is an issue he has

:28:09.:28:16.

been following closely over recent years. He recognises this is an

:28:17.:28:21.

important area of law and complex and we want to make sure the

:28:22.:28:24.

proposals are considered properly which is why the Ministry of Justice

:28:25.:28:28.

is examining the differences in treatment that exist within marriage

:28:29.:28:36.

law so that the differences can be minimised and I am sure he will

:28:37.:28:40.

agree it is right and fair to approach it that way. My

:28:41.:28:50.

constituent's chances of survival from buying the Attic cancer were no

:28:51.:28:56.

better than his mother's who died 40 years earlier. A disease soon to

:28:57.:29:01.

become the fourth biggest cancer killer in the UK -- pancreatic. Will

:29:02.:29:09.

she championed a significant increase in spending on pancreatic

:29:10.:29:12.

cancer researcher, which lags behind that of other cancers? He has raised

:29:13.:29:21.

a very important point which obviously is of particular relevance

:29:22.:29:24.

in the case of the constituent referred to. It is the case that

:29:25.:29:30.

pancreatic cancer is one that is very difficult to deal with and to

:29:31.:29:34.

treat and there has been a lot of attention over the years on certain

:29:35.:29:40.

cancers, like breast cancer, bowel cancer, prostate cancer, but I am

:29:41.:29:43.

sure it is important the appropriate attention is given to cancers which

:29:44.:29:47.

are more difficult to deal with like pancreatic. In February 2008 the

:29:48.:29:57.

brother of one of my constituents was unlawfully killed in the

:29:58.:30:04.

Ukraine. His Ukrainian wife is clearly implicated in his death.

:30:05.:30:10.

Earlier this year a coroner in Devon ruled that he was tricked into

:30:11.:30:14.

standing on a carriageway before being run down by a car with stolen

:30:15.:30:18.

license plates and death was immediate. Every time an

:30:19.:30:23.

investigating officer makes progress with this case and the Ukraine they

:30:24.:30:28.

are replaced. This has happened ten times and the case has stalled. And

:30:29.:30:34.

I implore her to raise this case with the Ukrainian Prime Minister so

:30:35.:30:39.

we can get justice and closure for Barry's mother, brother and the

:30:40.:30:47.

family? I am sure that the whole house will join me in offering

:30:48.:30:51.

condolences to the family following his death in 2008. I understand he

:30:52.:30:56.

has discussed this case with the Foreign Secretary. It is not for the

:30:57.:31:02.

British government to interfere in the legal processes of another

:31:03.:31:06.

country but the Foreign Office has been regularly raising this case

:31:07.:31:10.

with the Ukrainian authorities and will continue to do so and I

:31:11.:31:14.

understand UK police have assisted the investigation on a number of

:31:15.:31:17.

occasions and all information from the UK coroner will be passed on and

:31:18.:31:21.

I am sure the Foreign Office will keep him updated. Tens of thousands

:31:22.:31:28.

of disabled people on the portability scheme have had their

:31:29.:31:33.

cars removed by this government. In November a minister said they were

:31:34.:31:38.

looking at payments to keep their car pending appeal. Next week my

:31:39.:31:46.

constituents will lose her car. Can the Prime Minister of the house on

:31:47.:31:50.

the progress of this review to help Margaret and thousands like her? He

:31:51.:31:56.

raises an issue about the way these assessments are made and the

:31:57.:31:59.

implications of decisions being taken. He referred to a review in

:32:00.:32:07.

relation to payments and the moat ability elements of that and I will

:32:08.:32:16.

write to him with further details. It was a gear this week sends a

:32:17.:32:23.

hospital was closed due to fire safety concerns. There are no

:32:24.:32:28.

community gets locally within St Ives, Penzance or Saints just or

:32:29.:32:33.

rural areas in between. Campaigners agree that there is valued Community

:32:34.:32:37.

Hospital needs to be opened a urgent priority. Will she apply some

:32:38.:32:45.

pressure to NHS property services and Cornwall NHS managers to get the

:32:46.:32:49.

building work done and open these community beds? This is obviously a

:32:50.:32:57.

concern for his constituents and he is right to raise it. He will

:32:58.:33:00.

recognise the first priority must be to ensure patients are being treated

:33:01.:33:06.

in a safe environment and I understand the local CCG and the NHS

:33:07.:33:11.

have been working to ensure that community hospitals are fit to

:33:12.:33:16.

deliver that expectation in Cornwall. A review has been

:33:17.:33:18.

undertaken into the repairs needed to bring the Community Hospital up

:33:19.:33:24.

to a safe standard and the CCG will be looking at the entrance at

:33:25.:33:28.

facilities and needs once the local plan has been agreed and then Health

:33:29.:33:31.

Secretary has heard his representations. The government

:33:32.:33:39.

business rate hike could devastate the local economy in migrating

:33:40.:33:42.

constituency. Brighton Pier is facing a 17% increase, the world end

:33:43.:33:53.

pub, a hotel a 400% increase. Does she recognise Brighton will be

:33:54.:33:56.

disproportionately affected and will she set up a discretionary fund to

:33:57.:34:01.

support small businesses and agreed to a full review of the whole

:34:02.:34:08.

system? Business rates are based on the rental values of properties and

:34:09.:34:12.

the rental values of properties change over time going up and down

:34:13.:34:16.

and it is right that rates changed to recognise that. That is the

:34:17.:34:22.

principal of furnace that underpins the business rates system. We want

:34:23.:34:25.

to support businesses and recognise that for some business rates will go

:34:26.:34:29.

up when these revaluations take place which is why we have put

:34:30.:34:33.

significant funding in place for transitional relief but I recognise

:34:34.:34:38.

there has been particular concern there will be some small businesses

:34:39.:34:42.

that are particularly adversely affected by the result of this

:34:43.:34:46.

evaluation and that is why I have asked the Chancellor and the

:34:47.:34:49.

Communities Secretary to make sure there is appropriate relief for

:34:50.:34:59.

those cases hardest-hit. She gave a sympathetic answer to the honourable

:35:00.:35:09.

friend for the new Forest. Can I put it to her that for many of us there

:35:10.:35:13.

is something profoundly wrong with a criminal justice system which can

:35:14.:35:18.

pursue veterans will risk their lives for this country, 40 years on

:35:19.:35:24.

after any possibility of new evidence, while at the same time is

:35:25.:35:28.

capable of paying out ?1 million to a terror suspect. In relation to

:35:29.:35:37.

this issue in Northern Ireland, we are... The issue with the legacy

:35:38.:35:40.

bodies was part of the Stormont House agreement and we are working

:35:41.:35:50.

to deliver on that agreement. As I said, the overwhelming majority of

:35:51.:35:56.

our armed forces serving in Northern Ireland served with great

:35:57.:36:00.

distinction and we owe them a huge debt of gratitude. The situation at

:36:01.:36:04.

the moment is there a case is being pursued against officers who served

:36:05.:36:08.

in Northern Ireland. We want to see developing a legacy body, a

:36:09.:36:16.

proportionate fair and balanced approach. We recognise the majority

:36:17.:36:25.

of individuals were the result... Were at the result of the hands of

:36:26.:36:32.

terrorists. The Prime Minister pledged to end the burning injustice

:36:33.:36:36.

of so few working-class boys going to university. Can she tell me how

:36:37.:36:43.

cutting every single secondary school in Rochdale, Trafford and

:36:44.:36:45.

Manchester through the new schools funding formula is going to do

:36:46.:36:48.

anything other than make that injustice even worse? We want to

:36:49.:36:54.

ensure through the education system that we have a good school place for

:36:55.:36:58.

every child. And the Conservatives in government we have seen 1.8

:36:59.:37:04.

million more children in good or outstanding schools. We are looking

:37:05.:37:08.

at the funding formula for schools. We are listening to the comments

:37:09.:37:13.

made. Everybody across this house will recognise that for some time it

:37:14.:37:18.

has been said the existing funding formula is not transparent and is

:37:19.:37:28.

fair. But I can assure that our education policy is about ensuring

:37:29.:37:32.

every child has the opportunity to go as far as their talents and

:37:33.:37:41.

hard-working Ed Balls them to do. -- enables. You saw what a cut run

:37:42.:37:48.

means for a town and club like Sutton. With Wimbledon out of the

:37:49.:37:54.

picture wonder if she will join me in teen graduating Sutton for such a

:37:55.:37:59.

spirited performance on Monday and in wishing Lincoln well to keep the

:38:00.:38:04.

non-league spirit alive in the next round. He must be heard. Finally

:38:05.:38:15.

come gradually to and thanking arsenal for their generosity and

:38:16.:38:21.

allowing Sutton to keep a little bit of an extra slice of the FA Cup pie.

:38:22.:38:36.

Any reference to pie. I am happy to congratulate Sutton on the extremely

:38:37.:38:43.

good run that they had in the FA Cup. It is important and makes a

:38:44.:38:50.

huge difference to local areas when their football club is able to

:38:51.:38:54.

progress to that extent and is able to be up there with the big boys and

:38:55.:38:58.

do as well as they did and I am happy to congratulate Lincoln city

:38:59.:39:04.

on the success may have shown and we wish them well for the future.

:39:05.:39:13.

Finally, Michelle Thomson. The green investment bank is currently being

:39:14.:39:19.

sold. Some reports suggest that the contract could soon be concluded.

:39:20.:39:25.

This despite the U:K.'s dated focus on research and development and the

:39:26.:39:29.

fact that no realistic guarantees have yet been given as to the

:39:30.:39:33.

continuation of the proper headquarters and board based in

:39:34.:39:36.

Edinburgh. Will she commits to looking again as to why a sale at

:39:37.:39:42.

this time is not in the best interest of Edinburgh or the green

:39:43.:39:53.

agenda or the UK taxpayer? Before I respond I also am apologies. I am

:39:54.:39:57.

sorry to the member for Stroud and mixing him up with the member for

:39:58.:40:03.

Lincoln. I was obviously getting carried away with the football

:40:04.:40:16.

fever. In relation to the green investment bank, I will write to her

:40:17.:40:19.

with response to the questions she has raised. The Prime Minister has

:40:20.:40:27.

applied a very straight bat. We will leave it there.

:40:28.:40:30.