Jo Coburn with the latest political news, interviews and debate. Jo is joined by the chief executive of the RSA and former adviser to Tony Blair, Matthew Taylor.
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Hello and welcome to
the Daily Politics.
They are calling it Care BnB -
NHS bosses in Essex plan
to discharge bed-blocking patients
to members of the public
with a spare room.
But is it an appropriate way
to treat these vulnerable people?
A hand-out from government
for everyone from the unemployed
to millionaires -
could a Universal Basic Income
for all really be a good idea?
Sheffield Hallam MP Jared O'Mara
is no longer a Labour MP,
as the party investigates
allegations he used abusive,
sexist and homophobic language.
But does the party have good enough
vetting to prevent unsuitable
candidates being selected?
And who's top dog in
the House of Commons?
We'll bring you Parliament's
All that in the next hour,
and with us for the whole
of the programme today
is Matthew Taylor -
he was head of the policy unit at No
10 under Tony Blair and is now
the Chief Executive of the RSA.
The Royal Society for
the Encouragement of Arts,
Manufactures and Commerce
which describes itself
as "an enlightenment"
organisation - so we look forward
to being enlightened over the next
First this morning -
up to 300,000 people with long-term
mental health problems have
to leave their jobs each year.
That's according to a report
commissioned by Theresa
May published today.
It also claims poor mental health
costs the UK economy up
to £99 billion each year.
The Prime Minister is asking NHS
England and the civil service
to accept the report's
recommendations and said it showed,
"We need to take action."
The question is - what action?
It sounds like radical action is
There is no question the
issue of mental health has moved off
the agenda and it is a bigger cause
for people to be absent from work or
even worse drop out of work
entirely. I undertook a review
earlier this year for the Prime
Minister about work. One of the
things I argued in that is we need a
more concerted approach to health
and well-being at work, bad work
makes people sick so part of the
reason people have mental health
problems is because we have too much
work which is stressful which
doesn't give people a voice autonomy
at work and I think this is a role
for local government. If city mayors
combined authorities and could take
the lead in bringing together
employers, the health service,
voluntary sector organisations and
say, what can we do to improve the
quality of health and well-being at
work, and make it easier for people
with mental health issues to get
back into work?
It is all very well
having reviews, recognising that
action needs to be taken, that there
is a serious problem, whether it is
with mental health, or more recently
the racial disparity audit the
government has carried out. But if
there is no real money behind it it
doesn't necessarily mean it is all
about money but if there is no real
money behind it isn't it just virtue
It is obviously better
to be about lot of that money into
these initiatives but what I would
say about mental health and health
and well-being at work is often the
issue is the lack of joining up.
What we should be doing is more
preventative work, helping employers
to understand the conditions which
they need to create to make it
easier for people to maintain their
well-being but also to enable people
to talk about mental health issues
thoroughly on. That should be in the
interests of employers because they
don't want to lose good staff. It is
in our interests because those
people will stay in work rather than
falling back into the benefits
What about people out of
work and trying to get them back in?
The figures of 300,000 for the whole
of the UK and there has been a cut
in mental health nurses working in
the NHS in England you will not get
those people back easily.
I make a
distinct and between that, this is
one of the number of a growing list
of funding challenges. There is
another issue which is simply about
raising awareness. I am an employer
on the RSA and we have thought hard
about mental health issues and
well-being with a well-being
strategy. If you do that kind of
thing you are less likely to find
members of staff who come in so
stressed and anxious that they drop
out of work. Actually, there is more
that can be done because there is an
aligned interest in terms of what
the public need, what people
themselves need and what good
Now, the NHS in England
is increasingly struggling to deal
with the problem of patients who no
longer need hospital care
but are waiting to be discharged.
Last year there was a 40% rise
in people occupying hospital beds
who could be cared for at home
or in the community.
Well, one NHS Trust thinks it may
have found a solution.
Dubbed Care BnB, the idea
is to ask local residents
to with spare rooms to host patients
recuperating from hospital -
all for a little extra cash.
The scheme is part of an Essex trial
which would see 30 patients waiting
for discharge from hospital stay
with local residents
who have a spare room.
Health care start-up firm
CareRooms is recruiting
hosts near Southend University
Hospital who they say could earn up
to £1000 a month for taking
in a patient who is
ready to be discharged.
Hosts would be required to heat up
meals, supply drinks and offer
conversation and company.
This isn't the first controversial
measure that's been proposed by NHS
organisations in recent weeks
against the backdrop
of budget deficits.
Earlier this month three
Clinical Commissioning Groups -
or CCGs - announced plans
to ration non-urgent surgery.
Smokers in East and North
Hertfordshire CCG are to be
breathalysed to prove they have quit
before being referred for surgery.
And obese patients will also be told
they cannot have an operation
unless they lose weight.
NHS England has also been delaying
cataract surgery until people can no
longer perform daily activities.
And some CCGs have told patients
gluten-free food will no longer be
offered on prescription.
Well, earlier I spoke
to Dr Sarah Woolaston, the chair
of the Health Select Committee.
I started by asking her if the
scheme had her support.
If it is
something where you are bringing in
people who have experienced, former
carers who have an adapted home,
that might be something worth
piloting but that is not what is
being asked, this is just random
members of the public being asked if
they would like to make some extra
money. That is not the way forward
and my question for NHS England
would be, are these bodies going to
be registered with the Care Quality
Commission so that we can be putting
quality and safety at the heart of
this? I think that is a crucial
Would you like to see
the pilot end? You don't think they
should even be experimented with?
The idea that we do everything we
can to make sure we stop the
revolving door back into hospital of
people who are discharged home
Internet settings where they are not
managing, we should look at all the
options. But what we know from the
state of care from the Care Quality
Commission is the whole system is
under pressure. My big ask of the
government is to look at not just
social care but the NHS, look at the
whole system. When they bring
forward their consultation in the
green paper don't keep them as two
separate systems, they have to be
brought together and we need a
proper review of long-term
sustainability across health and
Isn't this an innovative way
of tackling the bed blocking
problem, which is such an issue
within the NHS? Isn't it better to
actually send an old person out of
hospital to a warm home where they
are going to get a warm meal and be
looked after in the broadest
possible sense by another member of
the public, good one?
Well, I think
the term blocking is pejorative and
I think we should say Dimeck
transfer of care. It is offensive
for a lot of old people. -- delayed
transfer of care. Many people I have
come across who have been former
carers I have seen could provide a
wonderful way home, if you like, out
the fundamental underlying problem
here is the shortage of social care
Puvrez -- provision and social care
in the community and the whole of
the funding for health and social
care needs to be looked at to get
something sustainable for the
future. It is under huge pressure.
If there was a registration system
and of qualified carers would money
dumped my to patients online would
that be acceptable?
This is a pilot
that has been proposed and what
needs to happen now is we need to
carefully at the pilot and make sure
quality and safety are at the heart
of it. As a bare minimum this
company should be registered with
the Care Quality Commission. The
idea that we conduct a pilot isn't
something I would say that we
absolutely must do. Of course we
must continue to look at all of the
innovative solutions but I would say
let's go back a step and save the
fundamental problem here is the
shortage of care provision. We know
that care home providers are still
under enormous pressure, we are
losing many care home beds and the
workforce in social care is really
at breaking point.
How much more
money should be spent by the
We know that in the
short term by 2019-2020 we're
looking at a funding shortfall in
social care of around 2 billion.
What we don't have in the NHS and
social care is a body looking over
the horizon at the long-term giving
us good quality data about all of
the demographic challenges we face
and what the needs and costs are so
that we can properly plan for it.
Magath health and social cake
together. We keep on having dysuria
funding of health and social care.
What about depriving surgery to
patients who haven't quit smoking?
Is that a good idea?
You have to
look at it from the clinical point
of view, if you are a smoker having
a routine operation and can stop
smoking before that that is in your
That is not what is
being suggested, they are saying
let's deprive that surgery as a
proposal going forward to the people
have not given up smoking and until
they do give it up we will not
perform the operation, is that
I think if it is being done
purely as a rationing measure I
don't agree. If it is being done as
a way of saying we can give you a
better outcome of your surgery if
you stop smoking than I think that
is worth trying. If it is routine
and there is no urgency at all about
it and you have three months to give
up smoking before you have surgery,
that is absolutely going to be in
your best interests, it shouldn't be
a rationing measure.
It has been put
forward partly as a rationing
measure as well as improving
outcomes, in the same way that
people who are overweight or obese
are being told they must lose weight
before they have an operation. Would
you support that?
It wouldn't be
right to deprive people of the
surgery they need because they are
overweight. But again, if there are
opportunities to improve outcomes
before they start and it is not
urgent of course that is in their
clinical interests but should not be
used as a rationing measure.
other suggestions are delaying
cataract surgery until people can no
longer perform daily activities. Is
That is not
justifiable and there have been
announcements on that recently and
Simon Stevens also commented on it.
That is unacceptable. And of course
it means we sometimes end up with
greater costs in the long term in
the NHS because of people are
becoming more and more disabled at
home because of low vision had more
likely to fall that in itself has
serious consequences not just for
them as individuals but it can add
costs to the NHS.
But this is the
reality for many local NHS trusts.
They are doing this because they
just haven't got the money to
perform all these operations. Do you
have sympathy with them?
need to look at, and it's something
I race with Simon Stevens when he
came to the health committee, is
this idea that what has to give? The
system is under huge pressure. What
is going to give? Is it going to be
waiting times for routine surgery?
He indicated that is part of the
system that will slip. We have seen
that already, increasing waiting
time through routine surgery, and we
are seeing all the other markers of
pressure in the NHS is starting to
flash warning lights now. But as I
say, we have to take a step back,
look at sustainable long-term
funding and the workforce for NHS
and social care.
In the meantime, do
you think rationing is going to
become the norm?
I think we have
always had that to a certain degree
in the NHS, let's be clear about
that. But what we know is waiting
times are likely to be increased as
the service comes under increasing
pressure. And I say again, we need
to have an honest discussion with
the public about all the options for
long-term sustainable funding in
health and care.
Yes, no political party has a
monopoly. We have to look at the
whole spectrum working together in
the best interests of the public.
Would you support an increase in
income tax to support improved
funding in health?
We have to look
at what they have done in Japan and
Germany where people over a certain
age start to pay an increased
precept towards their social care
costs. Pulling the risks of social
care. There are lots of things that
we could do to get more money into
the total system. There are things
we could do going back and looking
again at benefits for wealthy
pensioners. Should we tax those
benefits? We know the manifesto
proposal is not going to be
supported by the DUP. There are
things we know that our political
realities that we can't get through
Parliament. And that's the trouble,
we're kind of court now, I think for
ever, for manifestos, with nobody
sitting at honest truth is for the
public. This is the only stage of
the political cycle where we can
realistically get political parties
to sit down together, think about
what the options are, stop looking
at this from a sort of party
perspective of how am I going to get
the highest number of MPs by not
being honest with people? Set out
all the options and come to a
conclusion about how we are going to
fund this, because otherwise I'm
afraid the public are not going to
have any respect for politicians if
we can't get to grips with this.
Sarah Woolaston. We asked for an
interview with a spokesperson from
Southend University Hospital but
nobody was available. Matthew
Taylor, is on the idea of Care BnB a
disaster waiting to happen?
No, I think it is a great idea.
There is a charity called Shared
Lives which provides adult foster
care, it encourages people to treat
vulnerable people as members of the
family, it provides a support
services, you do not have to stick
with it if it is not working, and I
think that model can work in this
case. Look, there are millions of
empty bedrooms in this country, and
millions of people who are generous
people who would like to be able to
support other people, and wouldn't
all of us much rather be receiving
care in a family home with people
that we know, rather than being in
hospital, which, as we know, is a
bad place to be if you are sick?
these are not necessarily people you
would know, the suggestion is
elderly people would go into the
home of the people they do not know,
no medical qualifications, and
surely there risk attached to that.
There are risks attached to
everything, and if you have a
culture of avoiding risk, you will
never get anywhere. Of course, you
need to get this right, any family
would need to have basic training,
not terribly sophisticated, basic
health training, they would need to
know they get the support they need
by simply making a phone call. But
as long as you put all that in
place, the idea has got a compelling
logic to it.
You say it is
innovation Daesh isn't it
desperation on behalf of NHS trusts
who are so strapped for cash and
cannot deal with the revolving door
of elderly patients?
I make a
fundamental distinction between some
of these ideas that we are
discussing, the rather crude
rationing, which is desperation, and
this, which is a good way of saying,
if you are elderly and frail, you
would rather be in a nice bedroom, a
nice house with people who know your
name and how many sugars you like in
a cup of tea, rather than being in a
hospital where you are likely to
pick up an infection and which cost
a lot more. Essex is right, pilot it
with 30 people, find out how it
works, but to suggest that you
should not even explore it...
Sarah Wollaston is wrong.
I think it
is completely wrong to say that you
should not even explore the idea. If
there are fundamental flaws, it will
be discovered at pilot stage.
briefly, before we end, what is
wrong to saying to someone that you
have a better outcome if you stop
smoking or lose weight before an
If there is a clinical
basis for it, that is to say, if you
don't change or habits, the
treatment is not going to work, I
agree with that. But when it gets
into the business of morally judging
people, I don't know where the end
of that is.
Now, universal basic income.
The idea: Give every
citizen a wodge of cash,
regardless of how rich
they are or whether they have a job,
and then you could do away with most
of the benefits system.
It may sound a bit far fetched,
utopian even, but it's gaining
support across the political
spectrum, and four councils
in Scotland, with the backing
of the Scottish Government,
are looking into piloting the idea.
Ellie has been finding out more.
the way it works at the moment,
the more you earn,
the less you get in benefits.
If you don't have a job,
you can expect welfare payments.
But what if everyone
got given the same,
from millionaire hedge-fund manager
to unemployed single parent?
A wodge of cash
regardless of income,
resources or employment status.
It's an idea that's been
catching on too,
with countries as diverse
as Canada, Kenya, Finland
and India all trying out versions.
And now Glasgow City Council
want to have a go too.
In fact, four councils
in Scotland are now
actively looking at the idea,
and they're in the early
stages of designing pilot
schemes to test it out.
Empowering people and actually
changing the relationship between
the state and the individual,
and giving people
the opportunity to have space
in their life to not have to worry
about whether or not
they're going to be able to feed
themselves that week or the next,
I think people start
to make different decisions,
people start to take...
Maybe they would take a chance
on starting a business,
but it might be they choose to work
to help in the community.
Here's where we keep
most of Derek's medication.
Lynne Williams is a full-time carer
for her husband Derek.
She says UBI is a no-brainer.
I mean, when I gave up my full-time
job, what I get back from the state
is effectively £62 a week,
that's what carer's allowance is,
and it says that, effectively,
you're worth about £1.70 an hour.
To be given a basic income
that says, you know,
"We value what you do,
what you do means something,"
I think that, at a time
when services are struggling,
when benefits are being consistently
attacked, for me it's just something
that says we value what you do.
It tells you what
the new National Health Service is
and how you can use what it offers.
Supporters of the idea admit
it would be as revolutionary
as the inception of the NHS and
welfare state after World War II,
something that, at the time,
critics said was unaffordable.
There is money there -
we have to choose how we spend it.
But a basic income itself would
be brought in and would include
using money that's already
in the system, to a large extent,
so that would include personal tax
allowance that we already receive
that technically is this idea
of free money for everybody,
although you don't see
it directly yourself.
It would bring in some
of the existing welfare state,
so child benefit, for example,
would be rolled into that.
Some areas would still
be kept separate.
We sometimes look at
the costs in isolation.
However, if this led to increased
physical and mental well-being,
with therefore less need of
the NHS and other support services,
if it led to increased businesses
being created, new jobs,
actually, we could see substantial
savings and finances brought
in through those avenues as well.
I'm told the sort of figures
being suggested for recipients
in the pilot areas could reflect
current levels of jobseeker's
allowance, so roughly £73 a week.
But the scheme is very much
in the planning stages
and isn't likely to be rolled out
for at least a couple of years.
We're joined now by
the Labour MP Karen Buck,
who opposes the idea
of universal basic income.
Our guest of the day,
Matthew Taylor, supports it.
Matthew Taylor, why do you support
I think it is a response to the
kinds of challenges people face in
the 21st century, the growth of
insecurity, precariousness, people
moving between work. It is also a
response to the fact that success of
welfare reforms have failed to
address, they just move around the
problem of poor working incentives,
and the great thing about UBI, if it
is done in the right way, is that it
means poorer people, when they get
jobs, they don't lose their
benefits, it strengthens work
incentives, and if they have gaps
between work, rather than going
through a cumbersome process of
signing on and all the problems with
the loss in that, they have
continuity. No-one is talking about
a lot of money, we're talking about
having the basics of sustenance.
Wouldn't that be a way of replacing
what is still a fairly complicated
welfare system, even with universal
credit, which, as we know now, is in
the middle of huge rows between
political parties in Parliament?
Only it wouldn't do away with those,
because the floor with UBI, with
that idea come is that you would
still be required to have something
that helps you... I'm sorry.
not know if you will be able to
One more go, you would
still have to tackle the problems of
people with disabilities.
come back to you, Matthew. Isn't it
also a problem about spreading your
resources to thinly, that actually
it would be better to concentrate,
on, as you say, the working poor,
people who either do not earn enough
from their jobs or who are out of
So I think the
important thing about UBI is to
understand that it is a concept
rather than a policy, and views
about and vary from futurists who
see it as a passport to a post-work
society, through to much more things
from the RSA advocacy, which sees it
as welfare reform. Some say that
higher rate taxpayers would not get
You can understand why.
point is, by providing it to a
reasonably broad section of the
population, you address work
incentivising. The design has got to
address housing costs and disability
costs, and that is one of the most
difficult issues to deal with, but
nevertheless we need to start from
the failings of our current welfare
system. A lot of money and time has
gone into universal credit, and it
is not going to improve things.
it is about increasing the incentive
to work, I can see how some people
would see a UBI as a disincentive to
work, but wouldn't it encourage
It depends very much on what
level you are setting it at, but the
couple are getting factor is that
people are simply... There is a risk
that it will put a downward pressure
on wage negotiations, which is one
of the reasons that trade unions are
You would want to do it
in the context of the living wage,
so you would need to make sure it
did not become a way in which
working families come like tax
credits, it became a way of
subsidising poor pay. It has to be
part of an overall approach, and I
do not think it would be ready to be
introduced for a decade, but in
Scotland, Finland and other places,
there are ways of testing it.
there is opposition to it in
Finland, for the BBC is that Karen
has set out, the trade union
movement are not happy with the idea
because of what it does to wages. --
for the reasons that Karen has set
We are seeing a theme here,
people being averse to
experimentation. What we will find
out are DBA Birrell consequences. We
don't know whether it does
incentivise people to work. -- the
real consequences. We need to
understand the payroll consequences.
In the systems that have had
something like a basic income, it
seems to broadly speaking
incentivise people to work, although
it does reduce incentives to work
for women with young children. And
maybe that is a reflection of the
fact that do not want to work.
know you cannot design a perfect
system, but wouldn't it and fraud,
as well as persuading people that
work is better?
Well, there are
advantages to doing this... This is
Go on, then I will let
There are advantages to
doing it, but I think the
disadvantages doesn't deal with all
the complexity within the system. I
think there is a real problem about
the risk of this engaging people
from the workplace.
We both agree it
needs to be piloted, there is a lot
more to be learned about how it
works, but one thing we should not
miss out - Karen will know this as a
brilliant constituency MP - a number
of people have difficult experiences
with the welfare system, so one
advantage is you get the state out
of the system of regulating people,
oppressing people, and into the
business of supporting people to
make choices, and that is a big
gain, if we would like to make
people feel more positively about
But you can do many of
those things without going for a
£73 a week, does that
sound about right?
I would started
very modest. Not enough to live on,
but enough to keep your head above
water, so we don't have what we are
talking about now, people destitute
because they are waiting for their
I will let you go and rest
your voice, Karen, thank you for
The spotlight was turned on Labour
MP Jared O'Mara this week
when the Guido Fawkes website
published offensive comments
that he had made
online as a younger man.
On Tuesday, this programme heard
from one of his constituents,
Sophie Evans, who alleged
that Mr O'Mara had used
sexist and abusive language
towards her earlier this year,
before he was elected.
He strenuously denies
Yesterday, Labour announced
that the MP for Sheffield Hallam
had been suspended from the party.
The case has led to criticism
of the vetting procedures
that candidates undergo
before being selected.
Last night, the grassroots
Momentum group in Sheffield
reacted to the news that
Mr O'Mara had been suspended.
Very, very ashamed at the way
in which this has been covered.
Shouldn't he have been
interviewed for the position?
The Labour Party have
that he wasn't interviewed
to be a candidate in the election.
Well, I mean that just goes to show
how poor the selection process is
and how undemocratic
the selection process is really.
This is why we need
From what I know, the
Sheffield Hallam constituency
didn't really fund it too well.
They weren't really sure
of who to stand, there weren't many
people there willing to stand.
So I think lessons need
to be learned, obviously.
Jared actually came
to the University of Sheffield
and obviously, based on one meeting,
you can't really judge him too much,
but he seemed like someone
who is progressive.
So I would really like to make sure
that the investigation done
into what he has said is thorough.
The views of Momentum activists in
I'm joined now from Glasgow
by the Labour NEC member
and Momentum activitst Rhea Wolfson,
and here in the studio
by the Labour MP John Mann.
Welcome to both of you. Rhea
Wolfson, the journalist and Jeremy
Corbyn subordinate Paul Mason says
the Jared O'Mara debacle shows why
they need Labour Party members to
select candidates and not backroom
fixer is. Mandatory reselection for
all. Do you agree with that?
to remember the context of the last
elections, snap general election.
Many others argued we should find a
way to include local Labour Party
members despite the short time
frame. That wasn't possible and it
didn't happen and ultimately it has
led to situations like this. I would
say the normal scrutiny might not
look back at social media presence
for the past 15 years. I have been
on record and still support
mandatory reselection but I don't
think that is this debate, it is
about local scrutiny and
accountability that comes from
mandatory reselection and looking
forward we should seek local parties
involved in selections and as we are
into selecting candidates for the
upcoming general elections they will
John Mann, do you agree the
betting procedure failed in this
case? They said the regional
committee looked at Jared O'Mara's
CV and didn't even interview him. Is
that acceptable was in the Labour
Party's policy is to ask people if
they have anything in the background
that could bring the party into
disrepute or embarrass the party.
That has been the case for about 20
years. You are one of the candidates
in the last election. I don't know
if she was asked if anything in her
background would embarrass the
party. That is an important question
to ask because if you say no and
there is the non-beastly it's easy
for the Labour Party to do something
about it because you wouldn't have
told the truth. In Tambe's case if
he wasn't asked the question he
cannot tell the truth or not tell
the truth and that is it flawed
process. 20 years has been our
system doing that. -- Jared's.
fact it was a snap election, did
that affect it?
That is no excuse,
there aren't many seats that didn't
have people ready to go. Snap
election is just an excuse for that.
These procedures are straightforward
and standard. In this case the
Labour Party National executive and
Rhea is an elected member of it,
they impose candidates. If they
impose candidates because it is an
emergency situation they should be
following the party's rule book and
if they haven't done so questions
need to be asked about why they were
not doing so.
Rhea, what do you say
Nobody has suggested the
process was not followed and part of
the application process does involve
people saying exactly as John said,
anything in your history that will
embarrass the party. I agree with
John and whites swift action has
been able to be taken. I don't think
we are disagreeing at more scrutiny
must go into selection process is.
Again, I don't support in anything
but exceptions the NEC making
choices and choosing candidates. I
think local parties have to play an
important role in that.
local party or local membership have
avoided what happened with Jared
The investigation is ongoing
so I don't want to comment on
anything that is happening but I
don't want to prejudice that in any
way and Jared deserves to have a
fair process. Local parties play an
important role because they know
people in the community and how they
interact and if they are active.
They know if it is obvious in some
cases that they hold certain views
which might not be apparent because
they wouldn't have put it on their
CV, that does come out in local
party selections. It provides
Wouldn't that be
an important role for the local
party and local members to play, if
they could give to some extent
expert knowledge of the candidate
being put forward?
I am all for
local parties deciding who the
candidates are rather than Rhea and
her colleagues on the national
executive deciding. I think that is
good. But in this case it is totally
irrelevant. Jared has been an
activist, he has been a council
candidate before, and therefore, the
local party knows him as well as
anybody else. So you are going to
get situations where... Who knows
everyone? You cannot have a
selection process that's going to...
If you weed out everyone who can't
come forward and say, right, here is
all of my history for ever and I
have documented it. The only people
you would end up with are people who
have been around for 50 years with
an unblemished record as
Was suspension the
right thing to do?
suspension was right after what he
did, of course, Labour had no
choice, it was right what they did.
The commentary from him is
grotesque. The allegations that from
this year are incredibly serious.
Although he does deny them.
deny them but therefore suspended,
which is the due process, and
investigating him to see if he is
telling the truth or these women who
have come forward are telling the
truth, is important. Violence
against women, misogyny, has no
place in Parliament and no place in
the Labour Party.
Rhea Wolfson, is
it ever going to be possible to
ensure that every candidate's past
misdemeanours, or alleged unsavoury
behaviour, is investigated and
therefore dealt with before they are
selected as a candidate?
more important than that almost is
what we do when there are issues.
Ultimately we have a process here
and I think we need to be careful
about what opportunities we are
giving to people to rectify
behaviour that no longer aligns with
what they believe. People have to
learn from mistakes and that is an
important process we have in place.
We need to be careful not to create
a generational gap. I am 27 and has
an online footprint that people will
not have if they are 30 years older
Do you think people's
online past needs to be taken into
It does come absolutely but
we must have the process that says
you have said this in the past, do
you stand by it, or are you a
different person? That is what we
have seen here and I hope we will
see a constructive outcome in this
Listening to all of this,
Matthew Taylor, do you think the
selection process was at fault? That
there was some decision not to go
through due process because of a
snap election and there wasn't time,
and that actually having more local
membership involvement would be a
I agree with John and I
say this as an employer, somebody
who interviews lots of people for
jobs. Either the question was not
asked and the question should have
been asked, however rushed the
process was, it is one of the most
basic. I have sat in on the
selection of candidates, last-minute
selections, when I worked for the
Labour Party. Of course you can ask
the questions. The question was
either not asked, a fundamental
failure of process, or it was and he
lied and if he lied he is bang to
There is no other
possible outcome. Rhea Wolfson,
Labour is getting ready for another
election and the selection process
is under way for various target
seats and there is a major review
into party democracy over the next
12 months, which could include
mandatory reselection of MPs. But
aren't mandatory reselection is the
opportunity to get rid of potential
candidates who don't back Jeremy
Corbyn, which is something you have
wanted to see all along?
I want to
see mandatory reselection, not to
get rid of candidates who don't
support Jeremy Corbyn. Mandatory
reselection is a way to keep another
level of scrutiny and a level of
accountability for MPs. We do it for
cancer was. It is not a
controversial thing for councillors.
For elected representatives we need
a robust level of scrutiny for them
and I think mandatory reselection
plays an important part in that.
What do you say to that?
have that for councillors in most
parts of the country, we have a
reselection process and that
reselection process exists. If
people want to get rid of their MPs
they can do and there are MPs who
have been got rid of. Most go
quietly if their local party says we
don't want you again, you are too
old. With the expenses scandal some
got pointed to the door and went
quietly. On the occasion like Bob
wearing in Liverpool Bay fight it
out and get voted out. We already
have a process. What we don't want
is a long winded process which means
for me, I have no fears about
somebody trying to stand against me
in the slightest but Dummett
representing 20 constituents on the
child abuse inquiry. Of that would
have clashed with the six-month
reselection process you cannot do
both so we would spend six months is
purely going around hundreds of
meetings, whereas the process we
have at the moment is short, sharp.
If my constituency members don't
like me they have the power to get
rid of me and they will.
prospects of Jared O'Mara remaining
If he has lied, none, telling
the truth, good. -- remaining an MP.
What is the process that will flow
from what is going on now?
the process is the Labour Party
brings in someone with expertise and
specialism in sexual harassment and
abuse to be advising the process
throughout so that there is a
professional advice, and therefore
we go through the due process. This
happens in the workplace.
stay independent, couldn't he?
cannot force somebody to resign from
Parliament. There are no powers. We
voted for that and parliaments
agreed. There is nothing the Labour
Party cannot do about that. The
critical issue is whether he remains
as a Labour MP. The test now will be
very simple. Did he tell the truth?
If there was these questions asked
when he went as a candidate, did he
tell the truth or did he lie? If
they were not, is he telling the
truth? He is either telling the
truth or these two women are telling
the truth and there is no middle
ground grey area with this case.
Let's move on to something us before
we end this discussion which is
about the EU withdrawal Bill. We
have been told in the Commons today
it will be back in Parliament on the
14th and 15th of November. As eight
Leaver are you believed it is going
to be progressing?
I want to see it
progressing and I want to see good
amendments and proper debate.
Frankly, we have had all sorts of
politicking going on with strong
views but not going into much
Is Keir Starmer your shadow
Brexit said could treat one of
those? He says the Brexit Bill is
not fit for purpose.
voted for remaining are coming
closely together in wanting to see
the will of the people being brought
together in a way that is effective
and that means Parliament having a
proper say, that is a good thing.
Wardy you make of the accusations
that have been levelled at Davis
that Parliament might not get to
have a meaningful vote before the UK
I think it is part of the
general pathology which we have got
which is we are not facing up to the
fact that if we are going to leave
the European Union we are going to
leave it largely on the terms set by
the European Union. You have an
enormous of politicians dancing
around telling the people the truth
about that. We can all get involved
in process, that is an easier thing
to talk about. The hard thing to
talk about is we are in a weak
position and we are going to suffer
pain in the short and medium-term as
a consequence of the decision we
John Mann Andrea Wilson,
-- and Rhea Wolfson.
The Government has announced a major
U-turn on its housing policy.
At the start of Prime Minister's
Theresa May said that she will no
longer push ahead with plans to cap
the amount of housing benefit given
to people in supported accommodation
and social housing more generally.
The U-turn will cost the Treasury
£500 million by 2020. The Prime
Minister said a government
consultation will be published on
these issues next week.
Let's take a look.
This is something that we've been
looking at very closely over
the past year, since, in fact,
my right honourable friend
the First Secretary
of State commissioned work
on this when he was Work
and Pensions Secretary
in September last year.
I can confirm that we will be
publishing our response to that
consultation on Tuesday
31st of October.
It will look at a wide
range of issues.
We need to ensure the funding model
is right so that all providers
of supported housing actually
are able to access
We need to look at issues such
as the significant increase
in service charges that have taken
place recently, making sure
that we are looking at cost
control in the sector.
But I can also say today that,
as part of our response
to the review, we will not apply
the local housing allowance cap
to supported housing.
Indeed, we will not be
implementing it in the wider
social rented sector,
and the full details
will be made available
when we publish our response
to the consultation.
Theresa May in the Commons.
Joining me now is Kate Webb
from the housing charity Shelter.
Do you welcome the announcement by
the Prime Minister?
were facing a situation where not
only would people can often
vulnerable and on a low-income, to
not be able to pay their rent but
also providers were saying they
could not risk building. The
supported housing sector was
grinding to a halt where people
didn't have faith they could build
The change would
have applied to supporting housing
and people in social housing like
council homes. Can you explain to
viewers why it would have been wrong
in your view to give those people
the cinematic money as people get
who are renting privately?
speaking people renting from a
social landlord are receiving far
less than private tenants because we
all know private rents are more
expensive. This was a quite odd way
of comparing the two sectors. There
was some groups of people it would
have badly affected. Young people in
the private rented sector are
expected to live in shared houses,
which in the private rental sector
they can often manage to do. It
still causes problems but that
market exists. That was making it
difficult for social landlords to
work out how on earth they would
housing younger people when they
don't provide shared accommodation.
The big problem was around supported
housing because what the government
was basically proposing is taking
housing benefit levels that apply to
the bottom end of the private rented
sector, so often very poor quality
accommodation. It was using that to
set the standard for how much good
quality social accommodation with
support should cost. So they were
comparing apples and oranges.
think this is a good thing?
it is but the question you want to
ask is why this scheme developed
when it had flaws of this magnitude
in the first place. The other thing
is, this is one of a number of times
where the government has had to bail
out policies that don't look like
they will work, which will
presumably further restrict the
Chancellor manoeuvring next week.
There is a cost and to this and it
is quite a hefty price tag, isn't
it? As Matthew Taylor says there are
already challenges for the
Chancellor in his budget because he
is being asked to look at Universal
Credit, for example. Is there a
trade-off to be made?
This is the
concern because what we have seen in
the past is the WP, it makes these
cuts without thinking through the
consequences, which is why we have
ended up with this U-turn -- DWP.
Our concern is whether private
tenants will be asked to bear the
cost. At the same time you have a
housing benefit system not covering
the costs in the private rented
sector. If that is forced to undergo
more cuts when actually it needs
improvement, then it is hard to see
how the system will cope.
This is a
case of a policy that is coming home
to roost for the Tories because it
was one of George Osborne's policies
when he took more and more money
from the welfare budget, partly
because no doubt he deemed it
popular. But in fact, it has now
been proven that it is laying a
burden on those who can least afford
It is a badly designed policy, and
there have been far too many, and to
be fed to this government, Theresa
May has inherited quite a few not
very well-designed policies.
it have changed it if it was not in
the situation it is with a minority
Policy change happens
for a number of reasons, and no
question that Shelter are to be
commended for helping ministers
understand the scale of the problem.
If you look at recent weeks, we are
beginning to see a new way of
dealing with social housing from the
Government. Under George Osborne,
the assumption was it was not going
to be part of the solution, whereas
now Sajid Javid is making a really
strong case in Cabinet.
called for more borrowing to build.
You can't be serious about the
housing crisis without accepting
Do you suggest it was a
popular policy to trim the welfare
We fully accept
that, but what people often find is
that whilst in principle they are
supportive of those cuts, they get
squeamish about the consequences.
No-one wants to see more people
becoming homeless, but that is the
consequence we are having as a
result of these cuts. So it is the
classic way to get a cheap headline
when you announce them, and then
years down the line the chickens
come home to roost and they are
forced into these U-turns.
Meanwhile, the human cost is more
people becoming homeless.
Over the weekend, the Foreign Office
Minister Rory Stewart made headlines
when he said that British citizens
who have gone to join the so-called
Islamic State in Syria should be
killed "in almost every case".
It's thought that over 800 Brits
have gone to join
the terrorist organisation.
But dozens of British citizens
have also gone to Syria
to fight against Isis,
normally with the Kurdish
force, the YPG.
Many of those people are arrested
under the Terrorism Act
when they get back to the UK.
The Conservative MP Robert Jenrick
doesn't think they should be
prosecuted, and it's an issue
he put to the Defence Secretary
in the Commons on Monday.
Mr Speaker, my constituent
Aiden Aslin has just returned
to Newark after fighting
with the Kurdish Peshmerga
and helping to defeat IS
in Syria and northern Iraq.
He's one of hundreds of British
citizens who have done the same.
Would my right honourable friend
the Defence Secretary
note the contribution and bravery
of these British citizens,
but also strongly dissuade other
young people from taking
this extremely dangerous course
in the future?
Well, I certainly note that,
and I would advise any British
citizen intending or wanting to go
to fight against Daesh-Isis,
the way to do that
is to join our Armed Forces
and get the professional
training that is necessary
and the respect for international
humanitarian law that goes with it.
I'm now joined by Robert Jenrick
in the studio
and by a British man who goes
by the name of Macer Gifford.
He's been fighting against the
so-called Islamic State in Syria,
and he joins us from there now.
Welcome to both of you. Robert
Jenrick, you think British people
who are genuinely gone to fight
against Isis should not be pursued
by British police.
We want to get
away point where people who have
been out there for any reason
apprehended and questioned so the
police and stand what they have done
at there and can assess whether they
are a danger to the public or not.
The Government priority has to be
keeping the population back home
safe, but the individuals who have
gone to fight with our allies, with
the Kurdish Peshmerga and others,
against IS, there should be a high
bar before those individuals are
prosecuted, their lives put on hold
while they are investigated, and
ultimately sent to jail.
Gifford, I understand you have made
three trips to Syria since 2014,
what have you been doing there?
have been doing a number of things.
I first went in 2014 just to fight.
Since then, I have worked as a
combat medic, I have set up a
medical unit, been a commander in
the YPG, and I have campaigned for a
long time for more support for the
people on the ground fighting
against Islamic State.
motivated you to go in the first
Really, the images on Sinjar
mountain, the fact that kabaddi was
surrounded, the Kurds were under
siege from Islamic State, and as
someone who loves democracy, that
believes in secular values, I wanted
to go out and stand in solidarity
with the people who were suffering.
I really wanted to embarrass the
British Government to push them or
into helping people on the ground,
because at that time, in 2014, not a
huge amount was being done.
understand it, are people who go to
fight in this way against IS
committing any crimes in British
Well, it is very, catered, as
you might imagine, there is no clear
law on this. -- it is very
complicated. There is an historic
law which outlaws going to fight in
foreign wars, but it is not
currently used by police. Terrorism
offences to make it difficult for
individuals to go out and fight
abroad. What happens to individuals
now is that, upon their return, they
tend to be arrested under the
terrorism act, interviewed, bailed,
and then left in a sort of legal
limbo for a long period of time,
because there is so little evidence
to determine what they did or did
not do at there. Generally they are
released back into the general
population but with a cloud hanging
over them for many years to come
Are you worried what
will happen to you when you come
back to the UK? Hugely.
I have been
here three times, I have not been
arrested in the past, I have been
stopped under the Terrorism Act,
which I wholly support. Robert is
absolutely right, we should be
stopped and questioned about what we
have been doing, but at the end of
the day, the vast majority of us are
former servicemen, and I can speak
for them in saying that we are
largely patriotic, very patriotic
from my point of view! We believe in
democracy, we believe in secular
values, we are fighting against
Britain's enemies, and having this
over my head is not particularly
pleasant, particularly if there is
not a guarantee, or what is the
word, particularly as there is no
chance of them successfully
prosecuting me. If they were to
arrest me, it goes on my record, I
can't is goodbye to any visa to
America or Australia, so it is a
punishment outside of the law if
they do arrest me.
But can you
understand why you are arrested, or
could be arrested, I should say,
others coming back to the country,
because the authorities need to
ensure that your story stands up,
and it is very difficult to verify
that story? You have chosen,
voluntarily, for all the virtuous
reasons you have set out, but we
have your word for that - shouldn't
you go through due process when you
Well, the legislation is OK
as it is. I mean, being stopped
under section seven is the right not
to remain silent, whereby I get an
opportunity to express what I have
been doing, who I am, and I have had
to present my phones and all my
passwords. There is no reason why
they don't let us into the country,
and then they can still do all the
processes and interviews they like
later on. It doesn't have to be an
arrest. That seems way overboard in
Just briefly, it is
difficult, isn't it? We have just
listened to Macer Gifford talking
about going up to fight with British
allies, but there are other
organisations which are prescribed
terrorist organisations, it is not
straightforward, is it?
thing to say is that we do not want
any British citizen, really, to do
this, because it is extremely
dangerous. I have worked with my
constituent and his mum and his
grandmother, and there is a very
real risk you lose your life if you
do this. I would strongly discourage
people from doing this. But if they
do do it, they should be a clear
policy from the Government as to how
it is handled. We are closer to that
than over the previous two years,
because the Attorney General has
said it is not in the public
interest to prosecute these
Robert Jenrick, Macer
Gifford, thank for joining us.
Now, we've almost come
to the end of the two-legged
guests on the programme.
Who wrote this?!
I say almost because our next guest,
the winner of this year's
Westminster Dog of
the Year competition,
will be accompanied by his owner.
Before we reveal the identity
of the prized pooch,
here's Emma with details
of all the canine rivalry
as Westminster's finest
doggies howed off.
Normally we chase politicians
for their policies,
but today it's all about their pets.
Rocky is a fantastic dog.
Rocky the wonder dog.
He is seven years old,
he is a chocolate lab,
and basically he is
the glue in our family.
Alice is a seven-year-old
cavachon, and she's a
very, very warm, affectionate,
friendly dog and a great companion
to my wife and I am very
much part of the family.
Come on then!
As well as having to navigate this,
the judges have also been
looking at the relationship
between politician and pooch.
How did you get on with the course?
Was it challenging?
Not too bad.
Not very good with the tunnel.
I mean, he loves red as I'm a Labour
politician, but he was much
better on the jumping.
Obviously he could walk over
those at his height.
But, yeah, he did really well.
Now then, which MP's dog is this?
It's Maria Miller. How are you?
Very well, thank you.
How is he getting
on in the competition?
Really enjoying it.
Lots of dogs here,
lots of people here.
As a Cockapoo he loves
dogs, he loves people
so it's his idea of heaven.
Is he particularly well
trained, do you think?
He's not very old,
he was only born in January
so he's only ten months old.
How competitive is it
getting here, though, really,
between the MPs and their dogs?
There's friendly competition,
and I think as far as we're
all concerned, it's a good
opportunity really for us
to mix and socialise.
Coming in on the Tube
was so interesting.
Very humanising to have a pet
on the Tube on the journey in.
Suddenly people who wouldn't
look at anybody,
it's like, "Oh, a dog, a dog!"
Suddenly Londoners become friendly!
I mean, I think it's great to see
them walking through Parliament
and just to see people smile
when they see a dog there.
Perhaps we should allow
dogs in every day.
What an adoring look!
And we're joined now
by the winning dog, Rocky,
and his owner, the Labour
MP Tracy Brabin.
How do you feel as the winner?
delirious, I feel like I have won
Miss World or something! It is like
an Oscar, it is amazing. I didn't
think we stood a chance, some
amazing dogs, really well-trained,
some very cute dogs, some great
crosses, Albert particularly
adorable. I am just thrilled that
people saw how amazing he is.
sort of personality has he got?
Cheerful, upbeat, energetic, he is
seven, but still really up for it
and curious, soft as well, he loves
a good couple. An amazing dog, great
and the agility, that is down to my
husband Richard, who is very good at
training. Just really chuffed.
is the atmosphere like?
competitive, but I think it is great
that it is cross-party, it is just
all about, you know, the fun of it.
But there is a serious element in
that the Dogs Trust and the Kennel
Club, they are working really hard
to get a fair deal for animals and
puppy farming, bringing that through
Parliament. It does have more of a
As you said,
watched you think about the idea of
bringing dogs to work? Would it be
therapeutic, make people feel
I love dogs, I was
disappointed, we wanted to have dogs
at our workplace, but too many
people had allergies, but I would
love this a dogs at work. I have to
say, it is great when you see these
examples of MPs collaborating, some
people say you should never speak to
each other, the ideologically pure,
but actually I think the public like
it when they see that MPs of
different views can have fun and
raise important issues.
quickly, about loneliness, if you
are in the least bit lonely or be
like you're not part of a group,
just get a dog!
Is that MPs you are
talking about?! We feel your pain!
They get you out, running with Rocky
in the morning is good. So, and just
a dog gets you out, people will
always talk to you if you have a
See has been the best behaved
best we have had for a while, he is
even watching the programme! Thank
you very much for bringing him in.
Thanks to our guests.
Jo Coburn is joined by the chief executive of the RSA and former adviser to Tony Blair, Matthew Taylor to discuss the latest news from Westminster, including trials for an Airbnb-style stay for recuperating hospital patients, the selection of Labour MPs and a debate over universal basic income.