16/01/2017 Monday in Parliament


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Hello and welcome to Monday In Parliament -


our look at the day at Westminster.


MOs from across the Commons call for action to streamline


the Health Service and Social Care in England.


The local government agree they need help. The health service agrees they


need help. But the health service and local government blame each


other. Warnings that a skills shortage


in the housing industry is leading The pressure that the trades have


had up to it means we have substandard building going on.


And, in the Lords, the Government gives assurances


workers' rights won't be damaged by Brexit.


But first, the Government's been warned by MPs on all sides


of the House of the need for better communication between the Health


Conservative backbenchers were among those who told ministers


about hospital beds being taken up and constituents finding themselves


caught between health and social care providers,


Local Government Association have been


through increasing the social care precept will not be nearly enough


to address the ?2.6 billion gap facing adult social care by 2020.


Instead of exacerbating the existing postcode lottery, will the


Secretary of State not commit to additional ring-fenced


resources into social care, to tackle this crisis?


Mr Speaker, in the last spending review,


government allocated an additional ?3.5 billion a year till 2020.


to adult social care and just a few weeks ago,


I announced additional help of ?900 million over


Now, local councils do have to play a role in this.


I note that in Sunderland the average council tax bill is down


And in Sunderland, if local councillors want to


For many of my constituents, the fundamental problem in all


too many cases is that we still we still separate health care funding


Can I, therefore, urge the Secretary of State to speed up the integration


of health and social care provision, so that we can deal


with patients' needs in the round and put those first,


Between 2010 and 2020, around ?40 million will


have been taken out the adult social care budget in Hull.


And you could see the effect of that just this weekend, when you


can see what is happening in our local NHS hospitals.


Will the minister think again and make sure


that the problems the local authorities are facing are


addressed by central government ring-fenced money?


Mr Speaker, I am sure the honourable lady would welcome


the announcement that was made a few weeks ago, which is trying to


recognise those pressures she identifies.


That is additional funding. That is on top of the ?3.5 billion.


?900 million over the next two years.


But what she rightly highlights is that this


is a situation we need to keep looking at to see what more can


Most members will have had in their constituency surgeries,


The local government agree they need help.


The health service agrees they need help.


But the health service and local government blame each other


Would it not be a good idea, on a cross-party basis,


to look at a new model for social care?


Mr Speaker, my honourable friend is right, firstly,


I have seen many situations like that in my own


He also highlights the need for all of us to


talk more about this issue and see what we can do working together.


Having spent a day with carers just before Christmas, seeing what


amazing work they do, they feel frustrated because they are


Will the minister look at what can be done for increasing funding


to social care in addition to what we already done.


And make sure that is subject to a cast-iron ring fence, to ensure


the money goes where it is needed most.


Mr Speaker, I can assure my honourable friend that we will


continue to look at the resources applied to adult social care, both


from local councils and from central government, to make sure they


Also, we will continue to push the case for reform, to also


make sure all councils realise there is more more that can be done


The House of Commons library figures show that, in


the period from November 2013 to November 2016,


instances of bed blocking where social care was solely


In the 12 months to November 2016, bed


Does the minister recognise that the precept


package brought forward by the government in December is


insufficient to solve the crisis in our social care system and is


putting further pressure on our already-stretched NHS?


Mr Speaker, for the Minister recognises is that


the additional funding announced in December will make a


There is ?240 million additional coming in from the


There is an additional ?600 million - it is new money.


An additional ?600 million coming in from the precept changes.


When it comes to using that money, we all want to see a reduction


She will be aware of big differences between local


councils in delayed transfers of care and I think some councils can


The Communities Secretary, Sajid Javid.


The author of a report into the construction industry


says a shortage of skills is leading to sub-standard building.


Mark Farmer was one of the witnesses giving evidence


to MPs on the Communities and Local Government committee


He said the industry was going to have to do more with less -


What we have in construction is an ageing workforce.


One of the most advanced, in terms of age, of all the


What that suggests, based on census data


and looking at the level of new entry into the industry, that we are


going to lose 20-25% of our workforce over the next decade.


With Brexit overlaid on that, whether it is a


hard or soft Brexit - there are variations on the theme -


but it is undoubtedly going to add more pressure to that.


I could easily see a situation where we are moving towards a


situation where about one-third of our workforce is lost over


Mark Farmer said it was partly skills and training,


It is massively important that we get it into


schools earlier and to influence thinking.


To change their perception perception of the


My view is that you have to do the innovation piece first


and profile what skills we need in the future.


I think for us to have a more productive modern industry, it is a


mixture of traditional site-based working -


Artisan, Biblical skills, whatever you want to call it -


alongside approaches which may be factory-based, maybe hybrid.


Then, you stand more chance of attracting youngsters.


The youngsters are wanting something more around


the 21st century, not something from the Dark Ages and,


unfortunately, part of our industry still has that stigma


attached to them, rightly or wrongly.


We need to move the dial towards creating a different offer.


But in doing that, not only are we increasing the productivity


of being able to to do more with less -


it is an absolute certainty that that is what we are going


to have to do to stand more chance of


increasing new entrants into into the industry,


because it is more attractive to them, in terms of


They are not necessarily working on a cold and wet building site.


or carpenter, they could do it in a factory.


The committee wanted to know what impact Brexit may have. It will have


a big impact. Over the last few months, the value of the currency a


lot of foreign workforce are taking home is not as big. That is having


an impact. In London, 40 to 50% of the workforce is fallen. That is


about ten to 15% in other parts of the country. Attention how many


houses would have to be built. I do not think it is a matter of


political debate. It is a case of seeing, we need to do it. Is there


encouragement and stability to the industry for doing it. What has been


missing from the market is simply buying rented homes. You have had


between 15 and 25,000 purchased by associations. And shared ownership.


But since we have stopped building these forms, the market has not


worked. That is when it stops functioning. When we stop building.


In the last week two, quite unknown well-known house-builder had


problems with regard to property and this growing feeling that


traditional building in the house-building world is not


delivering the quality that is expected, in terms of the legacy of


defects. We are on the tip of the a spare the. The tradition and trades


are coming under very pressure -- a lot of pressure and we are building


a legacy issue downstream of defects and other issues which could be


serious. I do not want to over generalise. Most of the people are


very well trained and very complement -- competent, but that


has been diluted. The competence levels are not as high as the rear.


It needs to be of solutions, such as quality control.


Now, the case of Noel Conway, a terminally ill patient who wants


the right to end his life, was raised in the House of Lords.


who is chair of the pressure group Dignity in Dying,


asked if the Government might consider changing the law.


Lord Keen of Elie said this would be a conscience


vote for individual MPs, who had rejected a change


The short answer to the question is no. Like previous governments, we


have always made clear that this was a matter for Parliament, not


government. The other house consider the bill in 2015, but rejected it by


330-118. I thank the Minister for that reply. There has never been a


government supported Bill with relation to assisted dying. He will


be aware of Noel Conway who is taking this challenge to the High


Court. He thinks his individual human race have been breached when


the pain becomes unbearable. Does the Minister agree that 86% of


disabled people support Noel Conway and want a change in the law so that


when the town comes to face their own death, they can live there last


month 's safe in the knowledge that if they are suffering becomes


unbearable level of professional help to end it. Can we seek an


ethical bill on these lanes in the future. It remains the government


view that any change to the law is an issue for individual conscience


and a matter for Parliament rather than one of government policy. I am


aware of the case of Noel Conway. As it is no court, it would not be


appropriate for me to comment on that case.


But a former President and current patron


of the Royal College of Surgeons sounded a note of caution.


Should it ever be considered again, the medical profession has to be


excluded. They will not want to be associated with the taking of life.


They are there to save lives. Pilot is possible there are those who meet


volunteers to undertake the task, it is important and should not be


legislated because the majority of them would even be legislated to


undertake the south that was the case. I hear what he is seeing and


understand his reasoning behind his observations. I can only rephrase


that this government does not intend to legislate in respect of this


matter. Do not like this matter, give people the opportunity to make


this important decision about how they die.


Again, I can understand the noble lord's interest and concern in


respect of this matter. I will observe that Parliament has twice


addressed this issue in the recent past and has determined not to make


commitments to the suicide act. It is not supported by one single


organisation for people with progressive conditions. The very


people who would be the main beneficiaries of assisted buying.


Growing numbers of disabled people in their organisations are


campaigning against such a Bill because they feel it is desperately


unsafe. The CPS that that this in February


2010 and again in 2014. I understand the reluctance to change particular


legislation, may I ask whether the minister in consultation with his


colleagues and the CPS would consider whether reforms are


necessary with regard to CPS policy on assisted dying? My Lords, the


matter is CPS policy must be left to the CPS to determine independently


of Parliament. It is not for government to dictate what that


policy should be. It is regularly reviewed and I can say that, for


example, in the period from 2090 2016 -- 2009 two 2016. Many cases


were not proceeded with in the case of the prosecution.


You're watching Monday in Parliament.


The Government has been pressed by its own back benchers


to speed up efforts to reform health and social care.


The biggest threat to safety on the railways is terrorism,


according to the deputy chief constable


He told MPs on the Transport Committee the danger


was unpredictable, but there were others too.


The challenge from protecting the network that is wide and open, and


the risks being so I'm predictable, that is the greatest level of


concern. We have seen that recently in North Greenwich. It is a real


threat that we have to counter. In terms of more traditional crime,


protecting vulnerable people, I know it was a theme of the previous


committee, but focusing on effort and those people in crisis or at


risk on the network and then can be fun aboard the crime is where we are


putting our effort. Those types of offences that really cause people


the most physical harm and impact on the confidence to travel, so


predatory sex offending, levels of violence, particularly where that


affects railway workers. We have is seen across Europe recently


terrorist attacks involving domestic vehicles. We have seen trucks and


lorries. The biggest thing that concerns me is level crossings. We


have traced that carry up to 1000 people at peak times that are


hurtling at huge speeds with level crossings where we have flimsy


barriers. That is a major concern as far as I'm concerned. From your


perspective, what can be done to mitigate the risk but what training


is being provided to those in the control centre to try and spot some


of the signs that may be able to stop such an attack happening in


future? Absolutely. I wish it was an easy one to answer because it is


often described as Martini terrorism, because it can happen at


any place at any time. We cannot predict, as you will be familiar


with. Having an open network in the way we do and the way our running


lines cross a small country, it opens up those wonderful points. We


do a lot around level crossings. We have a large number of Network Rail


funded mobile safety vehicles that can allow us to target different


hotspots or risk locations so that we can put those preventative and


disruptive mitigations in, not just for terrorism but for trespassing


and people who are offending by not abiding by crossings. There is an


increase in sexual offences, is that people feeling more confidence or


more actual offences? How can we tell which it was? This is where we


were out of kilter with other police forces. We have recorded a greater


increase in sexual offending, and that you are right to suggest there


is a greater confidence in victims to tell us. We actively promoted our


interests and concerns. We had a number of significant initiatives in


the last two years. Worst of all, in London, there was project Guardian,


which is a collaboration. It encourages people who feel


accountable about behaviour on the Tube. That morphed into a national


campaign. If I give you a brief example, why is that important?


Quite another of the victims who converted us said, I experience this


in our journey, I don't want you to do anything further, but I want you


to know it happened. For a variety of reasons, they want to take that


approach. Using that data, we were able to analyse trends. We saw that


there was a spike in indecent assaults, touching, on a Tube line.


We were able to put undercover officers on that line and they saw


an offender who use the busy service and the nurturing of the train to


bump into people. Those victims did not know they had been victims, but


watching his behaviour and seeing him do that three or four times in a


row without getting off the service and allowed us to intervene and


arrest him. that Theresa May will signal


a so-called "hard Brexit", the European single


market and customs union. The prospect of leaving


the single market has prompted


concerns from trades unions that workers' rights


could be undermined. But the Business Minister,


Lord Prior, sought to lay


those worries to rest. We do not need to be part of an EU


single market to have strong protections for workers' rights. The


Government will not roll back EU rights in the work ways or the


workers' rights that are enjoyed, they will be brought across into UK


law. I think he has indeed touched on this, would he go one step


further and reassure the House and indeed the TUC that all the


directives contained and that are relevant be contained in the great


repeal Bill? The prime and Esther has said that under this government


we will see workers' rights not eroded and not just protected but


enhanced. The commitment of this government is clear. Obviously, for


subsequent parliaments, as we we gain sovereignty over these issues,


it will be up to individual parliaments to make those decisions.


It is a sad day when the TUC no longer has faith in the Labour


Party, the Liberal Party and this British Parliament to defend the


rights of British workers. Is it not the case that workers enjoy rights


far beyond the EU directives, especially with regard to maternity?


For workers' rights enshrined in EU law will be transferred into UK law.


But then it was added, where practical. Could the minister tell


us which workers' rights cannot be practically transferred into UK law?


I can't think of any rights that would fall into the lot practical


area. The prime and Esther went further than that. She is committed


and our whole industrial strategy is committed to bringing decent, well


paid skilled jobs to Britain. It's not often that a piece


of legislation is thought capable of helping to heal


"divisions in society". But that's what


the Labour MP Jon Cruddas thinks about the National


Citizen Service Bill. The National Citizen Service -


or NCS - was set up six years ago to give teenagers the chance


to do community work on residential


trips away from home. The Bill would give the service


a permanent legal standing. It really focuses on how we live


together. There is no more important issue addressing the country. How do


we create a nation at ease with itself and foster a notion of


service to others amongst our young people? Obviously, this is vital


given the divisions in our society, so clearly exposed around last year


around class, race geography and religion. These tensions might


continue to escalate. The suggest a brittle country. Resolving this and


healing division will indeed take time, but this Bill will help.


A Conservative, James Berry, said the citizen service


had many of the hallmarks of National Service,


recalling the words of his father who did his national service


in the 1950s with the Royal Marines and the Durham Light Infantry.


He always would tell me what a great social leveller their National


Service was, because in basic training you could be there in a


dorm with people from Eton, with stockbrokers, Alec Trish and is,


people from all different walks of life. Every conceivable background,


but any pre-existing airs and graces would be squashed by a diet of


exercise, hard work, learning new skills and having to live, eat,


sleep and work, do everything together as a team. I want won to


give young people an appetite for service, for opportunities and try


new things. Our vision is for NCS to be a common experience for all.


Scouts, cadets, people familiar with service in the same team, sharing


their expertise with people who have never done anything like this


before. NCS sees people with different background, faiths,


interests coming together at a formative age and learning the


impact they can have on the community around them.


With wide support across the parties,


the Bill was approved without a vote.


Alicia McCarthy is here for the rest of the week,


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