08/07/2014 Daily Politics


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To answer questions over the department's handling of historical


allegations of sexual abuse. The Government has announced two


separate inquiries to find out if a culture of secrecy allowed serious


crimes to take place. Many hospitals in England charge for


car parking. Is it a fair way for the Health Service to make money or


a stealth tax on the sick? You might be thinking about heading off to the


great British seaside for your holidays, you will be able to get a


stick of rock and a donkey ride, but new rules many beaches are about to


be classified as dirty. The way they cover the news on TV in


America is well, different what we're used to here. It may seem


extreme, but is it for money? -- fun?


You may have heard it is allel rage at Westminster -- all the rage to


bring in a top adviser from America to sharpen up your image. We don't


like to be left behind so we got our own hired gun! It is Frank Lunce. We


have just got him for the next hour! Let's start with the tighter


security facing air passengers travelling to the US. British


Airways warned that anyone who can't turn on an electronic device like a


phone or a tablet will be banned from their flight following warnings


that Al-Qaeda has developed new types of bomb that could be hidden


in electronic devices. Do you regard it as a sensible precaution or too


extreme? Well, I fly over 300,000 miles a year and I'm back and forth


to Europe five or six times, and I can only imagine what it will do to


airport security. I have done a fair bit of Middle Eastern travel. The


challenge we have right now is what is happening in Iraq. You have a


terrorist organisation, ISIS, that is beyond anything that we have


experienced in the last 100 years. Or dangerous, more of a threat and


more random, the violence and the killing is more blood thirsty and it


is so significant that if anything happens to any plane, we will never


forgive our Government. Hasn't that been the case at other points in


history? Is the public behind this in your view? Will they actually


support this tightening of security as they have done, after 9//11, for


example, after 7/7 or will they just think we have had enough of this


increased security and want to get on with our lives and travel where


we want to when we want to? We expect is 100% success. You have got


somewhere between # 5% -- 75% and 80% who would support this. It is


another victory for terrorism. The more hassle that it causes us, the


more of our freedoms that are given up, the more tragic this becomes,


but it is a way of life. You say you travel all the time. What has it


been like? Your flight affected already? It is easier to come here


than to leave. Heathrow has stronger security. Their rules are stricter


than in the States. I've done a lot of travel in the Middle East. If you


do it the right way, you have got to come early, you have got to be


professional about it, you make sure that your devices are charged, it is


not that difficult. But I don't like giving up on our freedoms. I don't


like changing the way that we live because someone doesn't like us or


how we live. Do you think it is too extreme to stop people boarding the


flights even if they take their electronic devices away if they


weren't charged up? I'm not a terrorism expert, but when people


start to be denied that chance to board, you see, it used to be you


would have to throw it into your luggage. If they're going to say, if


you can't turn it on, you can't fly, that's going to be a problem. It is


time for our quiz. And with the holiday just around the corner,


today's question is about your summer reading list. Thanks to


e-books academics say they can work out how many people are finishing


some of this year's must read titles and it is not many! Which of these


is least likely to have you reaching for the final page?


S at the end of the show Frank will give us the correct answer. I think


it is D. Women I've Loved by Bill Clinton! Thanks for adding that to


the list. All eyes will be on the top civil


servant from the Home Office later today when he appears before MPs to


explain the way allegations of child abuse were handled by the


department. His boss, Home Secretary, Theresa May, yesterday


announced two new inquiries, one to look into the handling of documents


about those allegations passed to the Home Office in the 1980s and a


second wider inquiry into allegations of abuse in Parliament,


the BBC, and religious organisations that won't report until after the


2015 election. Here is Theresa May. I want to set three important


principles. First, we will do everything we can to allow the full


investigation of child abuse and the prosecution of its perpetrators and


we will do nothing to jeopardise those aims. Second, where possible,


the Government will adopt a presumption of maximum transparency


and third, presumption of maximum transparency


and we will make sure that wherever individuals and institutions have


failed to protect children from harm, we will expose those failures


and learn the lessons. Theresa May announcing the inquiries yesterday.


We're joined by our political correspondent, Robin Brant. Robin,


so Mr Sedwill is going to be questioned and put under the


spotlight by MPs on the Select Committee. What will the line of


questioning be? Well, it can be a crucible with Keith Vass in the


chair. The thrust assuming we don't get the details on the terms of


reference and the broader remit for the bigger inquiry, the thrust this


afternoon for Mark Sedwill will be a focus on that letter he send to


Keith Vass on Saturday which detailed the review that the Home


Office carried out last year. It began in February. It was headed by


an inspector from H MI C who was unnamed. It reported in the August.


Its conclusions were slipped out, but only really were details added


on Saturday in this letter to Keith Vass and it was that letter that


revealed that tens of thousands of files had been searched and 114 were


presumed missing or destroyed or could not be found and we also


learned on Saturday from this letter that four bits of information which


had been previously undisclosed had now been turned over to the police


for further investigation. So there will be questions about you know,


the person that was brought in to do it. How they did it, the methodology


of their work. There will be more questions about these 100 plus files


which have gone missing. He will be asked to explain, I think, Mr


Sedwill what that means and how could they have gone missing? And he


referred to the fact that 50% of the files -- 5% of the files initially


examined had gone missing, but there is no broader explanation for that


and it is this claim, mixed together with the revelation about missing


files that is fuelling the conspiracies out there. So the


thrust of the questions will be about the missing files, the


methodology, the man who did it and why frankly as well at the time the


are results were just slipped out and there wasn't more publicity


given to the results. That is curious as we're now pouring over


the details as you say that didn't get that much publicity, but what


about the issue that ministers weren't questioned during the


review? Will that be enquired upon? It says in the letter no ministers


were interviewed or questioned. That's partly because Mr Sedwill and


the man who carried out the investigation wanted to try and keep


at arm's length from current ministers, my understanding is that


previous ministers weren't questioned either. There will be


intrigue about that, because, of course, the man at the centre of


this and the man who denies any allegation that he dealt with these


accusations improperly is the Home Secretary at the time. So there will


be questions as I said, not just about the remit and the way the


methodology, the work that was done, but frankly if ministers sitting or


past weren't questioned, what are the validity of the conclusions


reached last summer? Mark Sedwill said having a review of a review.


We're going to get the name of a QC who will help Peter Wanless with


that, but he said the reason for that was to check that the


conclusions remain sound and valid and quayed Vass and others -- Keith


Vass and others will say if you didn't question the politicians


involved or politicians now, the conclusion perhaps isn't sound and


valid already. Robin, thank you very much. Mark


Sedwill will be questioned in a few hours time.


Yesterday, an interview emerged of a former Conservative Whip in which he


suggested that whips had huge amounts of power over their fellow


MPs and would protect them from all kinds of scandals. Here is the MP


who is now dead, speaking in 1995. The scandal involve small boys or


any kind of scandal which a member seemed likely to be mixed up in,


they would come and ask if we could help and if we could, we did and we


would do everything we can because we would store up brownie points.


That sounds a pretty nasty reason, but it is one of the reasons if we


can get a chap ot of trouble when he will do as we ask forever more.


We're joined by the Labour MP who raised that interview during


yesterday's debate in Parliament. You are shocked by that revelation.


I was shocked, but not completely surprised, because the thing we know


about child abuse, it is about trying to exert power over other


people and what we have seen with the trial involving Rolf Harris and


Jimmy Savile and other celebrities is people who are in positions of


power find it particularly easy to cover-up what is happening to their


victims, their victims feel that they can't come forward because this


person is incredibly well respected and well-known and so, I wasn't


hugely surprised that that had happened, but I was obviously


horrified by it and wanted to raise it with the Home Secretary because


when we have got an inquiry of this nature now, what we need to make


sure is firstly, we can get access to any of those records that still


exist in the Whips' Office. If the systems are still in place that


conspire to stop the truth coming to light that they must be challenged


and tackled however uncomfortable is That for political parties, for


Parliament and the Government. Are you reassured by whatever is


announced by Theresa May will get to the truth? No, I very much welcome


the fact she had a change of heart and she has aannounced there will be


an inquiry, but what concerns me, when I raised this in the House


yesterday, it transpired it is not clear how this will work. It is not


clear if those the whips records exist and if they do exist, it is


not clear who owns them and whether they can be made available in the


public domain. What this did actually yesterday was it rang alarm


bells with me and many of my colleagues because these are the


sort of difficulties that arose over the Hillsborough inquiry and as you


know, 25 years later, the families are still fighting for justice and


for the truth to come out and what we cannot afford as a country, in


terms of public confidence and particularly for child abuse


survivors is for this to be yet another inquiry that doesn't get to


the truth. Right, the inquiry which Yvette Cooper asked for, it is vast,


looking at all sorts of institutions and religious organisations and the


BBC. Is it going to be any easier to get to the truth there with such a


big remit? I think it has to have a broad remit because what we have


seen over recent years is there is no part of the country that is


untouched by child abuse and I think people working in the field knew


that already. The point is not that child abuse is happening everywhere,


the point is as my colleague Nicola Blackwood said last year, it can


happen anywhere and that's why we need to be extra vigilant and


actually, for politicians who are in a position of power, our systems


need to be 110% robust to make sure if there are problems that they come


to light. What does this do to the institutions that are going to be


looked at in terms of whether they did enough to protect children from


abuse? Good for you and don't give you and


if you don't get the answer, push and push. The key is, don't make it


Labour, all governments are involved in this. Relugeous institutions have


been -- religious institutions have been involved in this. If you keep


it out of politics, the public will say bravo and don't back down. The


moment it becomes political, that's when the issue becomes we don't


trust politicians anymore because we believe in cover-ups whether it is


about money or sex or power, we don't think they're fighting for us,


we think they're fighting for them. Do you think it will get to the


bottom of it? Will it bring answers? If MPs like you keep the focus on


this every week, again and again, it can. If the BBC does, it can and it


has to because you cannot have this level of cynicism that you have got


in Britain and we have in America and you have to be able to trust


these people. Remember, they have a public trust. They were elected to


represent and OK, maybe they are not role models, but we expect more from


Congress or members of Parliament and if they behave badly, they have


to be held accountable. What about shifts in attitude in public


response to claims of child abuse? Historical or not, there has been a


shift, we have had many people on the programme who have said that in


the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, somehow people did turn a blind eye. It was


not acceptable, but those people were in a way not investigated after


rumours and claims. We want accountability. It has changed. We


want accountability, let the chips fall where they may, and the key


person, if they are alive and they need to be punished. You set out


what you want, to be available to the people looking at this, but why


then not have a judge led enquiry, why not have people swearing an


oath, why not make it that formal, if you think it is that important


and you need to get to the bottom of it. You have used Hillsborough as an


example of where it was difficult. Something that was welcomed


yesterday, the Home Secretary under pressure from MPs said that if the


independent panel that she set up feel that they need statutory


powers, she is very open to giving them to them. But the important


thing here, child abuse thrives in secrecy, it is not fun, it is not


exciting, it is humiliating, it is distressing. It is awful. What we


need to do, all of us, whether it is the media, politicians, anybody in a


position, we need to shine a spotlight anywhere we think that


could have occurred. Keep up the pressure to make sure we have the


right answers for people finally after years and years of living with


this in silence. Thank you very much.


Parking charges are never popular, but the fees charged to park


at many hospitals are, according to one MP, a stealth tax


Hospitals in Wales and Scotland have abolished them,


but three-quarters of hospitals in England do make visitors pay to


Our reporter Jane Dodge went to one hospital in Nottingham.


Really it is coming out of our pocket, isn't it. We pay our taxes


and everything like that and still, it is overpriced for car parks. It


is too much. Especially for patients. They should not have to


pay that much. Should they be paying anything? They should not. If you


are in hospital for a couple of weeks, people have got to I have


been here since 7:15am, now it is 1pm, yes, I expect it to cost in the


region of about ?10. How does that sound to you? It is a lot of money.


The hospital argues that charging the rates they do for car parking


means they can ring fence the budget of patient care, it means they do


not have to take money out of patient care to subsidise parking


for visitors. Do you accept that argument? If you put it that way,


perhaps the patients come first. I can afford the parking. I find it


expensive but I suppose there is people who would find it extremely


expensive. I would only use it in an emergency. I have just jumped off


the bus to come here. ?4 an hour, that is pretty steep. And we are now


joined by Robert Chalfant and from the centre-right think tank reform,


Andrew Halden B. -- Robert Halfon and from the


centre-right think-tank Reform, Andrew Haldenby. Hospital car


parking has become a stealth tax, people do not know why the charges


are there and what it is being spent on, and there are very few


concessions. What you say to that? It seems to be unfair that at a


point in your life when you are vulnerable, going to hospital,


seeing relatives, you are being charged through the nose. It is


wrong to charge people through the nose, but you have got to take it in


a hospital by hospital case. Kingston Hospital, big car park next


to the shops and residential housing, if there were no charges


for that car park, it would be full every day of the week, 24 /7. It is


not what Robert would like to achieve but the thing is, no patient


would be able to get into the hospital. This is the law of


unintended consequences. Some hospitals in London are charging up


to ?500 every week. ?500 every week? ! There are many examples of


horror stories. People have cancer and they are paying huge amounts of


money to park their car. The answer is a simple one, to what Andrew has


said, if you go to a hospital, you would go to a ward, a token or a


ticket would be given to you, and then you would not have to pay, that


would stop people using it for shopping and the issues he has


described. This has become a stealth tax, charges increasing all the


time, it is costing people enormous amounts of money. The charity,


bliss, it is a charity for parents with sick children, they have said


that parents are paying an average of ?34 a week when they have


premature babies. Some of them cannot even go into the hospital to


see their baby because they cannot afford to pay the car parking


charge. How would you pay for it? You say people do not know where the


money goes, and when people are arguing over the cost of cancer


drugs, and vital life-saving equipment, perhaps car park charges


is not the priority. Important question, I would argue this is as


much a front-line issue as it is when you spend money on nurses and


medical machinery. These decisions are made in NHS hospitals every day.


There is money. If we used a generic drug for stat ins, rather than


branded drugs, we would save 200 millions. That is the cost it would


take to scrap hospital car park in charges completely. -- statins. If


there was a way for paying for it, would you look at hospital charges


being scrapped. They can be scrapped now by hospital trust if they want


to but the reason they do not is because they want to spend the money


on clinical treatments and they are afraid that car it is the same


argument as prescription charges, nobody likes prescription charges


but they were introduced because when they were free, people were


taking too much, they were misusing resources. A small charge was


introduced. Most things in your NHS are free at the point of use, a tiny


number of things are charged but they are charged for a good reason.


We can have a debate in the long term about whether there will be NHS


charges, I'm reluctant to have any charges on the NHS, but what we have


seen with car parking, it has become a stealth tax, people do not know


why they are being charged so much money. If they did know and they


were faced with these choices, perhaps they would support the idea.


It is interesting hearing a conservative asking for charges to


be removed, in a controversial debate about general funding for the


NHS. This is quality of life, you have given me an idea that I would


like to take back to the US! We charge a lot of money, it can cost


40, 50 bucks, just for a visit in hospitals in New York and Los


Angeles. You have a bigger issue. Not just quality of life in terms of


parking, what kind of service do you get? The big debate, how long it


takes to get health care services here, how long do you have to wait


for admittance, how long do you have to wait for a doctor to see you?


That is a higher priority. What are the margins? People living pay


cheque to pay cheque, issues like this will matter in a general


election. What about your suggestion, if you are a London


hospital, living near good public transport, trying to encourage


people not to bring their car, you think that is not justifiable, to


have higher charges in the local hospital. We have got to get real,


Sony people who go to hospital are immobile for one reason or another,


parents and relatives go with children, it is difficult to use


public transport. Not every hospital has great communication links. There


are hospitals all around the country. There will be isolated


examples but it is becoming a stealth tax, there is no


transparency and it is hitting the most vulnerable in our communities,


and it is wrong that parents cannot afford to go to hospital to see


premature babies, because they cannot afford to park their car.


That is unjust and that is why the government have got to look at


this. I agree that it is a stealth tax in as much as people do not


understand it. In the NHS, there is only one place where the NHS says,


"you must give us money to fund this service" and that is car parks. It


is unusual when people do not know about it and it should be explained


to them. But I think the principle is correct. The government is not


listening to you, that is not seem to be a will to look at this, are


you getting anywhere? I am a campaigning MP, we have gone to the


backbench committee, 110 members from each side of the house,


including Frank Field, from both sides of the house. We have a


Twitter page, if you join that I can send you all of the other details.


We are on Facebook as well. In a couple of days we have had a


thousand people contacting us. Most horrific stories have been sent to


me, people suffering from cancer paying huge amounts because there is


no concessions. We have got to look at this. You say it is up to


individual hospitals but the governments have done brilliantly,


in getting rid of mixed sex wards. That was a national decision, this


is as much a national decision. Thanks.


Now on this show we can't get enough of opinion polls.


Which is fortunate, as at the moment you can't move for polls


on everything from who do you trust to run the economy to which party


The politicians claim they don't take much notice, although


if that were true our guest of the day here would be out of a job.


Eleanor Garnier's been finding out more.


I think that the only polls that count are on May 22 this year and at


the general election next year... The only one that counts is the one


where people get to vote and decide who they want to run the country...


There is only one poll that counts, that is the one that will take place


tomorrow, Thursday. The only poll that counts is the pall of the


voters... You are beginning to sound like a politician!


They Say they do not matter but political parties still spend


thousands of pounds on polls and on focus groups, they have been used


here in the UK since the late 1970s but they were first pioneered in


America. How many of you without saying any names have a preference


or who should take over the Conservative Party? This is Frank


Luntz, at a focus group for Newsnight during the Conservative


Party leadership election, it saw David Cameron rise to power.


Welcome to the world of 21st-century focus groups. This is in central


London, theories are tested and opinions are listened to and


reactions are recorded. They may be anonymous but the people chosen to


take part in focus groups are scientifically selected. The


questions and queries put to them are detailed and targeted. Instead


of simply "do you like ex-politician?" It is "how would you


describe them if they weren't -- it is, "what kind of animal would they


be? " And what kind of driver might they be? One person said that Nick


Clegg is driving the wrong way up a one-way street, that goes further


than just saying they do not like them, that is a better understanding


of what they dislike. There may be popular with political parties but


not all politicians like the idea of focus groups. If you want to waste


money they are probably a good thing, they do not do any harm, but


the way to find out what people are thinking is to knock on the


doorstep, talk to people, that is how you find out what is worrying


people. Talking to people on the doorstep, you the truth. Focus


groups, they can almost be interpreted to anything. It is


unbelievably arrogant I think for any politician to assert that they


think they know what all voters think on all issues all of the time


or any, any of the time! They need to use all of the tools available to


them, to connect with the public and really understand what they feel,


and they are mad if they do not use focus groups, they are crazy.


They may say that the only poll that matters is the one on election day,


but from this side of the glass, looking on, politicians are


certainly watching and listening. Any thing to help political parties


connect with lost voters. I don't know about you but I agree with


everything they have said! We know they do. They just say


there's only one to look at. Whilst you conducted polls for Newsnight


that propelled David Cameron from behave-on to party leader and it's


been asked many times whether you played kingmaker or spotted a trend


that already existed. Which was it? -- oblivion? I didn't know what he


looked like, the day that I did the session. I had never seen him. I had


a transcript of what he said. I was trying to pick clips so voters could


react. I said that was David Cameron and my initial reaction was he's too


young, they are going to choose someone, maybe not Kenneth Clarke,


maybe not someone that old, someone born in this century! But actually,


my first reaction was, the Tories were older.


The Tory voter is older. I was shocked at how they responded. He


didn't use notes. He did not read a speech. Every other politician gets


up and they are reading. He delivered from the heart and number


two. He gave credit to Tony Blair. It wasn't just a slash and burn. The


British public is tired of these divisions, they are tired of the


anger that seems to be expressed in every speech. Everything the Tories


have done is wrong, everything Labour has done is wrong. They want


someone who can find the sensible centre. The centre ground is what


every politician says that they are after. How do you think that David


Cameron has developed his brand since that time, since that point?


It's interesting to me to watch his communication style because it's not


as informal. Maybe you can't be as Prime Minister. Maybe you have to be


more structured. But to see him attempt to redefine what it is to be


a Conservative was important over the last few years because the


sketch had a bad reputation. I don't believe that Conservatives won in


2010, I believe that Labour lost. The group that was e-Wally as


decisive was the one we did for the BBC which showed Gordon Brown could


have been re-elected if he'd have gone within the first 100 days.


That's tactics. It's not because people's minds change and Gordon


Brown did not demonstrate he was a leader. The focus groups work by


thinks, let's give them a try. And he was a change from Tony Blair?


Which they appreciated. After an hour-and-a-half of watching him,


they'd already had enough. That caught us that timing is everything.


What about Ed Miliband then now? The Labour Party is trying to adopt the


tactics used by the Obama campaign and people say he doesn't compare


very fairly and we'll come on to Obama's popularity, but can it work


here? Can that Stardust work for Ed Miliband? The first thing I learned


is that Labour is spelled LOBOUR, not LABOR and the Americans have to


understand that the language here is not the same as America, the


expectations are not the same. I'm not the kind of guy that wants to


come over here and trash the country but British voters are more


sophisticated, asking more detailed questions, shows like this one get


into more substance and so it's dangerous to have an American


sensibility applied to British politics. So why are so many


politicians, why are David Cameron and Ed Miliband using American


strategies? Have you seen any evidence of David Axelrod on


Labour's campaign? I saw the language he use odd on behalf of


Miliband, on Barack Obama which you pronounce PARRACK. It's the same


thing with British Consul tans because the British political elite


goes to other countries and gives them advice. The key is to


understand the civility of the country. Do you think it's


understood here? It takes years to understand. I went to Oxford here


for three years and over the last five days I've been working my way


through the 80 and 90s politicians and the stuff that I read in British


publications is not necessarily accurate if you really want to


understand the British people. Who is going to win the 015 election? I


can tell you why the Conservatives won't win, they are not getting


credit for the economy. Labour won't win because Ed Miliband is not


sufficiently respected as a leader -- 2015. The Liberals won't do as


well because there is a disappointment in their performance


in the coalition. I can tell you why each person is going to do badly. I


can't give you a winner at this point. Do you think it will be a


coalition again, a hung Parliament? I believe it will be a coal Is again


but I don't know who will lead it. One thing makes me sad - the level


of cynicism in Britain seems to be at an all-time high. Now you have


got this child abuse scandal. It's tragic. This is the cradle of


democracy for the entire globe and I would want to see the population


proud of what British institutions have done globally. Instead, they


are cynical, it's dark and it's depressing. We've got the same thing


in America. If you take that cynicism, some might argue that's


helped the rise of UKIP. Do you agree with that? Do you see echoes?


I see tremendous similarities, the level of anger, disappointment and


the level of fear. The key for the politicians, particularly the party


leaders is to speak with incredible clarity. Put aside the notes, the


talking points and tell people not just what they think you want to


hear, tell them exactly how you feel and why. Simplify it, lardify it


and, most importantly, give voters the chance to be heard. That means,


don't respond to questions, ask questions. I'm waiting for the


political leaders here in this country. Ask your constituents


questions, don't just answer them. The more that you hear them, their


voice, their emotions, their passion, the better the political


person you'll be. All right. Let's leave it there.


Today, the Government's commissioner for victims and witnesses, Helen


Newlove, publishes her first report on her work to improve the way the


criminal justice system treats victims. The Tory peer has ample


experience of that system herself. Helen's husband Garry was murdered


outside their home by a gang of drunk everyone youths. She says she


spent her first year in the job listening to victims, and in the


report, she outlines her priorities for the next 12 months. She calls


for more research into restorative justice where victims can be brought


face-to-face with offenders to tell them how they were affected by a


crime. What's more, she says she wants to


give make sure victims' views are better heard by the police, courts,


prisons and policy-makers. And Helen Newlove, who entered the Lord's in


2010, believes more work should be done to improve the current


complaints system for victims and, where cases are dealt with out of


court, she says the interests of victims should be prioritised. So


that's what she wants to see happen. Will the Government listen? Helen


joins me now. Wok welcome to the prom. Are you being listened to?


Well, I'm not a person that will go away so they have got to listen and


if they don't, I can keep challenging them. What's been the


response so far to the issued you have raised in this last year? It's


become welcoming on some things but on other things not, and the fact


that I recently did a victims contact scheme, we are getting


better training and giving training better care to victims. I've been to


see a section 28 pilot which I have to say was quite good to see, and


I'm not on about the politicians here, but the judiciary, the judge


was victim-focussed, the defence and prosecution were victim-focussed.


That is nice to see, but there's further work to do. You can't fix


this overnight and it cannot be a knee-jerk reaction. Victims need to


be understood, rehabilitated and we need to work with them, not speak


for them. If you surround that your experience and what happened to your


husband, what the complaints that you had about the system chimes with


what other victims say to you now? Sadly, it does. This is seven years


this year that Garry died. So nothing's changed? They have. Nobody


recognised victims, they were part of a process but fitted in when it


suited them, so we are speaking about victims. Victims are really


tired of being asked the same questions time and time again and I


say to the Government, how much more do they need to do. So my review as


Victim's Commissioner goes to if heart of them, exposes the failings


where they are not doing it, makes it quality, independent reports to


place before Government for them, they are the law-makers, along with


the judiciary, to do something to support victims.


So victims treated in a less compassionate way than you would


like. Where does the fault lie? It's bad in every organisation, to be


federal feckly organisation. I wouldn't blame any specific. An


example is, sending a very clinical letter to a victim if you are no


going to go ahead with the case, with principal guidelines. That


means nothing to everybody. For me, it's about language, put it in a


language that they understand, sit with victims to make them understand


and better communication doesn't retraumatise victims. The criminal


justice testimony is supposed to be there to protect them, not to


revictimise them. We have had a barrister on the programme saying,


until a case has gone through, people who're under suspicion have a


right to be defended and rigorous questioning of potential victims. Do


you think that's still fair? If you over protect people in the witness


stand, for example, in the witness box, they still need to come under


vigorous questioning until a verdict? I would like to have


victims to have some protection, never mind over-protection to be


honest. In the States over the last ten years we have switched and we


use that phrase "victims' rights" and it's not yours or your husband's


fault that you happened to be there. The key is to understand the emotion


on it. I'm sorry for you loss. Every day, I'm sure that she relives it


and that's something that we forget. Just because it was seven years ago,


doesn't mean that it goes away. This tragedy is 20 years from now, it


will be the same. So how do you make people whole again? And that emotion


is what the policy needs to be focussed on. How do you, taking that


point, help people, which is what you have had to do, move on with


their lives, get over what's happened and, in some cases, as with


you, these are dreadful things, life-changing. How can you help


victims move on? It's a fair point on the emotion and that's many of


the debates I have is emogs is not recognised in the courtroom. But


actually, emotion is what's happened to victims and their trauma and you


need to support them as they enter the courtroom but also rehabilitate


them. Victims want justice, they believe in a right to a fair trial


but they also want rehabilitation. We always talk about rehabilitating


offenders and it's about time that rehabilitation of victims is


paramount to make sure that there's no further victims in our society.


Are you a big supporter of bringing perpetrator and victim together in


certain cases? I believe it's a victim's choice. That's what I want


to look at in more in-depth reviews. It shouldn't be a political


strapline. Nobody should jump into it and say it sounds very good. For


me, it's what Vic times need. They are vulnerable and traumatised. You


need a specialist area, like the doctors. Let them go at that time


when they want to digest it and if they want to follow it through, it's


a victim's choice, nobody owns an area and it should be for the


victims and what they can get, and happy, healthy lives back from it


that. 's what's paramount in this, not politicians. Good luck. Thank


you very much. If the travel industry is to be believed, 2014


will be the year of the staycation and if you are unfamiliar with that


particular buzz word, it means a holiday here in the UK, perhaps by


the Great British seaside, but no EU standards coming into effect next


year could mean many of the beaches could be reclassified as unfit for


bathing. We have been beside the seaside in Hastings to find out


more. Holiday-makers have been coming to


the seaside town of Hastings for generations.


And it's no different today with over three million day trippers


flocking to the town every year. But, new EU laws could blight one of


the town's biggest attractions. The sea.


Changes in the way that bathing water quality is measured could


strike Hastings and some 50 other English beaches off the list of


recommended places to swim. If the impression is given that Hastings


Beach is not clean, you may choose toe go somewhere else. For a town


that wants visitors in bigger numbers, that could be damaging. The


EU standard is what it is and we'll make sure we do everything we can to


hit it. Although the sea is clean by current standards, the new EU water


quality targets coming into force next year are twice as stringent as


those are bathing areas currently have to meet. On a hot day in high


summer, this beach will be packed. But, from October 2015, the new EU


law means that local authorities will have to display a sign atth


advising against swimming if the water quality fails to meet minimum


standards. Authorities are working hard to


ensure that doesn't happen. Nationally, water companies are


investing ?220 million cleaning up Britain's bathing water in the five


years to 2015. In Hastings, ?3 million has been spent by Southern


Water this year alone with another ?7 million earmarked for next year.


We have spent hundreds of millions of pounds over the years improving


the bathing water quality right around the coast and, if you go back


20 years, less than 50% of the bathing waters past the standard.


All the work we are doing and money we are spending should mean we see


results next year but I can't guarantee it.


So what needs to be done? Well, what we flush away ends up down here.


These Victorian sewers in Brighton are similar to those in Hastings


where campaigners are re-educating people about what not to put down


the drain or flush down the loo. Waste down the toilet will get


treated but contaminated run-off from roads and pavements, domestic


oil and fats down the drain, or dirty water from wrongly connected


pipes will flow directly into the sea. People have been shocked to


hear about the new directives, that they were not aware that not all


water that is thrown away, not all substances that are thrown down the


drain go off to be treated. With just over one year to go, no one is


certain that the sea in Hastings is going to be clean enough to meet


these rigorous EU standards, this bike knowing that the change has


been coming for eight years. Work is underway to address the issues, but


we'll all of the effort payoff? -- but, will all of the effort payee --


pay off? We're joined by the Green Party


leader Natalie Bennett and by the chair of the all-party


parliamentary group for all things He's not beside the seaside


but he's in our Salford studio. Do you support the new regulations?


You have got to support them, they are European mandate, I think of it


like this, people go to the seaside, they do not go there to bathe,


necessarily, but it will affect tourism to a large extent. Do you


support them? Do you think that the Environment Agency said that bathing


water in Britain is far cleaner than it was 25 years ago, what more can


be done? We are talking abstractly about European standards, I


apologise to everyone who is eating lunch but we are talking about two


measures of faecal bacteria. Lovely! This is what we are bathing in, we


need people to be bathing in healthy water. This is based upon the best


signs of what healthy water is, a measure introduced in 2006, we have


had plenty of time to react, I feel sorry for small business people who


may be affected. But example, it is a lovely place to visit, and I hope


that it will meet the standards, but there is a lot of other


attractions. When Natalie Bennett puts it like that, in terms of the


kind of bacteria you could be coming up against, the ball will feel


reassured that coastal communities will have to do their bit to improve


the standard of cleanliness in the water. Most council communities have


been doing that for a long time, to put it into perspective, between the


wars, they would bring battleships to the jetty of my constituency,


people were bathing in oil, and all kinds of stuff! That was when


tourism was at its height. We are in a different world altogether. --


most people will feel reassured. I think that these your chips -- I


think that these yardsticks are probably a little too Draconian,


however, having clean water, good clean water, is never a bad thing.


You represent Morecambe, would you say that the beaches in your area


are clean or dirty? My beaches are clean in my area. Quite recently we


have had a new measurement on our beaches, and two of my beaches have


just failed. These EU mandates are getting more stringent all of the


time. How clean does it really have to be? How clean does it have to be,


we saw in that film, the effect that this is going to have on tourism, if


you have got signs saying, "unfit for bathing, do not swim". That is


going to harm the British tourist industry at the seaside. We have got


to do what we are balancing your, a business cost, health of people


exposing themselves to the sea water. Is there a big health risk.


Yes, that is what faecal bacteria will do, I was reading the brief,


preparing for this, reading the website, and there are suggestions


that if you go surfing in certain areas, surfers, not bathers, talk to


your doctor about having a hepatitis A vaccination! We do not want to be


there! We want to be able to go into water anywhere in Britain. We really


must ask, given that this came in in 2006, privatised water companies,


this is one more example of where the model of privatisation has not


delivered. We have seen improvements but we could have gone much further,


much better. Answer that one. I disagree, in my constituency we have


an outlet with United Utilities, spending millions, I am fighting


them putting an outlet near a populated area in my constituency. I


know that they are spending copious amounts of money to address this, to


say that it is privatised industry is a fallacy. How come you have not


done more, not you, specifically, how come more has not been done when


you have had a number of years to deal with it? The regulation is


going more and more stringent, it is going up rather than down, or even


levelling out, what we are experiencing here is European Union


bureaucracy going crazy as usual, how clear does the water have to be?


bureaucracy going crazy as usual, I went into my local United


Utilities plant, over this discrepancy of a new tube going near


a populated area, they showed me what it comes in as and what it goes


out as. It was fit to drink. If it is of that standard, do we still


have two carry on looking for clean and clear waters? We will ask a


visitor to the country. -- do we still have two carry on looking for


clean and clear waters? Your water is too cold! With all due respect, I


am going to swim in Florida! California! It is too cold here, but


what I would say, you can have a healthy economy and healthy water,


and we have the right to expect both. That is what the British


population would say, the air they breathe should not make them sick,


the water in which they swim should not make them ill, and there has got


to be a focus upon what it does to the economy in the local area.


Nothing short of that is acceptable. You are going to have to heat up the


water to get Frank in! What about the environmental impact? LAUGHTER


That is for another day. Now here


at the Daily Politics we give you Of course we do! But TV channels in


Britain are by law obliged to be That's not the case in the States,


where cable channels are allowed to trumpet their highly charged


and partisan views. Our guest of the day is


a regular contributor to one Lets see what the American people


had to say about that clip. SHOUTING One at a time! Can I ask you a


question, seriously, is this going to be the level of discourse over


the next two years? Yes! Macro shouting point well taken... That


was not presidential... Macro SHOUTING


Warrants stop worrying about what the other person do, we have got to


come together! No, no, no! -- stop worrying about what the other person


do! We are going to stop this conversation now! I am glad that you


were in charge! I lost control. It is difficult! That was one of your


focus groups from 2010, when President Obama had accused the


Republicans of being hostage-takers over negotiations about tax cuts.


And we're joined by Medhi Hasan from the Huffington Post website, he's


also a presenter on al-Jazeera's English language channel


It is more polarised. Except that in Congress, we would never do what you


do in Parliament! I was Congress, we would never do what you


Margaret Thatcher, her final speech, somebody


Margaret Thatcher, her final "hypocrite! ". She is sitting down,


her last speech, somebody screams out. We would never do that in


Congress. But our public is more polarised. At least in Congress we


do not scream and holler at each other. Does it help political


debate, to have parties and shows like Fox News, does it help the


level of discourse or do you end up with a screaming match? Before I


come to that, to take this point, when President Obama gave the state


of the union, a Republican shouted out "liar back Tory" and many would


argue that this is part of a new level of unprecedented polarisation.


One person, one time. -- a Republican shouted out "liar! "


Americans are deciding where to live and who to marry and who to make


friends with on the basis of what they believe, I think... Fox News


and talk radio is not the sole cause of it but it would be mad to think


that it does not feed into it, the idea the news channels are under no


obligation to give you the other side of the argument, they spew out


one-sided use all day long in order to generate heat rather than light.


I was in the States the last time, when Obama care was being discussed


and debated, I watched with interest, and a lot of British


people thought, my goodness, why is there so much vitriol? We take it so


seriously, the promise, we do seek out information, to affirm us,


rather than inform us. I think that is a fundamental challenge. The


issue, we do not know enough, we do not learn enough, we do not read


enough. We do not watch enough. I work for Fox News, I will admit, I


watch an hour or two of MSNBC, I want to know what everybody is


saying. And what they are saying. There was an academic study a couple


of years ago which found that people who watch Fox News are less informed


about MST news in America than people who watch no news whatsoever!


People who watch the daily show were better informed! We have done the


same kind of research, and the Fox News viewer knew more. Did they know


more are all a more engaged? Are they more passionate? Do they know


more? You work for Huffington Post, not exactly mainstream media... It


is the biggest new site in America, but the point about television era,


it is regulated differently, but in America, elevating channels, there


is no difference between comment and news. -- television channel. His


papers are far more balanced here. And they are self regulated. --


newspapers are far more balanced here. Would it be better if


television was like it was in America? This did not help the level


of public discourse, it does not help information, the vast majority


of the British public want impartial news. We know that everybody is


turned off from politics, disengaged, if we made it more


entertaining? Why should we encourage mistrust by saying what


you are getting is not necessarily both sides of the argument? Looking


at Al Jazeera, is it impossible for a news organisation to be completely


impartial? Surely there is always an agenda? There is no such thing as


pure impartiality, but I think the point that would be made by Al


Jazeera, and I present a show for them, but they would say that they


give a different view on the world, it is the first global news channel


not based in the West, for example. In this country, Al Jazeera English


is regulated by off, full to their is the obligation to you


impartiality which was dropped in the late 1980s by America, and it


has been a disaster for the US. It is rich... For someone coming from


your perspective... To condemn America. I will be the first to say


there is issued, but I will defend what they do because our newspapers


are far less biased. We are talking about television. The problem is the


web, just read the comments section, go to Huffington Post, whoever is


watching... For one day, go to the website and read the comments... It


is the most personal, vicious, horrific commentary in politics. You


are talking about the comments below the line, every news organisation


has those, every newspaper. It does not make it right. But in America,


Fox News encourages that on the air! That is enough for the moment! We


have got to be proud of the BBC. I am!


There's just time before we go to find out the answer to our quiz.


to a new academic study, which of these books are readers


Is it: a, Capital, by the French economist Thomas Piketty?


b, Hilary Clinton's memoir Hard Choices?


or c, Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time


I think that it is D, daily politics! LAUGHTER


I have already read on Twitter, it is capital! You cheated!


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