18/03/2012 Sunday Politics East Midlands


18/03/2012

Andrew Neil and Marie Ashby with the latest political news and debate. With guests John Cridland of the CBI, Sir Simon Jenkins of the National Trust, and Stephen Hammond MP.


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In the East Midlands: should we chemically castrate sex offenders?

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After a protest in our cities, is its highly found more sites for

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Apology for the loss of subtitles for 1898 seconds

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The idea of chemical castration sounds awfully intrusive. Are you

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on the side of the offender? don't think it's an either or

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situation. There are around 100 offenders receiving it. Around one

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in ten are receiving something that could be described as chemical

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castration. The vast majority are given chemicals. There are hormonal

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drugs. They obliterate the sex drive, they have quite serious

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side-effects. Some of the effect would be similar to a sex change.

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They could feminise the male body. Osteoporosis can be a side-effect.

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Our concern is sex offending, the medical solution is not necessarily

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the answer. It is also not about the sex. It is about behaviour and

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attitudes. There are programmes in prisons which are the Best and

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proven way of tackling sex offending. Is there a danger, if I

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can put it that way, if this pilot is seen to be a big success, there

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may be a clamour that politicians may find hard to resist? That would

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be very concerning. The law takes away someone's liberty. There would

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be an additional punishment. We have concerns. The scheme is

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voluntary. There are concerns about how voluntary it really is. You may

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feel under pressure, potentially, I'm not saying it is happening, but

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if it was rolled out across the country. People could feel pressure

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to take part in these kind of test. -- tests, in order to be released.

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I don't think that is the Best thing. Thank you very much.

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That whole issue about it being the thin end of a disturbing wedge.

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That would be rather concerning. I wouldn't want to see that happen.

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This is very much on the margins. There must be done with the consent

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of the offenders. Prison is as much about rehabilitation as punishment.

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Punishment is about being locked up. This is a voluntary, I have spoken

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to people, they are describing their own libido and character.

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Thank you are much indeed. We will want to know how this pilot

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scheme works out. Another issue about which feelings

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run high. How do tackle the problems surrounding illegal travel

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accounts? Legalising the camps is one answer, if only it was that

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simple. Community forum meetings do not

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often attract crowds like this. A traveller groups around the agenda,

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and fear is filling the hall. know they have to live somewhere,

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but please not here. I shudder to think what will happen. House

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prices will go down, there will be more trouble in Birstall. What they

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are worried about is the prospect of three permanent gypsy and

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travellers' site being built by the City Council near their village.

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Each side would house a -- Wood House 6-10 families. They would be

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at Greengate Lane, B Beaumont away and read your way. The council says

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that enough is enough. We have had 90 camps, unauthorised. That is

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something that is intolerable for local people. Beefier of another

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Dale Farm, the site in Essex, that cost millions to Claire, stalks all

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councils. In its wake, the government has set aside �60

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million to provide a new permanent site. They say it would be a local

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community. The travellers are every bit as scared as the local people.

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It makes me feel sad. We have been hears, our children have been to

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school there. We have never caused any hassle to anybody. Here in

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Derby, they have built a �1.6 million permanent site, following a

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seven year wrangling. By all accounts, this is a real success

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story. It is well-built, well- appointed, the residents pay

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council tax, water rates, and other services. We would like to have

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shown you have what it is like, but the residents are so suspicious

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about being misrepresented, and they told us we are not welcome.

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There is now so much fear and suspicion. Back in Leicestershire,

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there is also anger. I think the view of the people are Burstall is,

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they are quite upset. -- of Birstall. They are quite upset.

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They think it's unfair to have three sides so close to each other.

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That was reflected in the meeting that we filmed. Council officials

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struggled to be heard. For me, I would say it is blind fear. I have

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worked with travellers all across the region, there are only a

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handful that caused problems. That percentage is normal for any

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section of the community. consultation clock is now ticking,

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just six weeks. That will not mark the end of this explosive debate.

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You are at Shadow communities minister -- you are the Shadow

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Communities Minister. We didn't do enough. We need to provide more

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sites. People are so exercised by the prospect of a travellers' site

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being established near to where they live, by be a legal incomes

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that they see, as he saw in your package, the site in Derby, which

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is an official site, run by the council, is extremely well run.

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They pay council tax. Actually, it is fitting in very well with the

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local environment. If you look at official site, regulated sides,

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that is the picture that you will see. The problem is, because local

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authorities find it very difficult to deliver aid regulated side. They

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have shied away from it. My fear is that the government legislation

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will make it more difficult for local authorities. We may see more

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illegal income springing up. Isn't that the opposite of what is

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happening? More money has been made available for legal sites. Chris

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makes some very good points. This is a problem that is always largely

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in the imagination. My experiences this. The well-regulated sides that

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we have, they work well. There are those who don't choose to live on

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those sites. Their reputation travels before them. There is more

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money being made available. The legislation is there, the money is

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there, it can be made to work. Under the coalition government, is

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it possible that the whole issue about travellers' sites is being

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pushed to councils? It has always been the local authorities decision.

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The travellers' site in Derby was originally envisaged in any event.

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I hope that what the government is doing well lead to properly

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regulated site being provided where they are needed. The fear is bear.

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People view traveller sites as unlawful. If you are a political

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group, you won't have time to implemented before the election

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comes along. -- implement it. Briefly, is there an issue that the

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least people are talking about this? I think people running scared

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of this in the past. -- I think people were running scared of this

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in the past. I'm optimistic. Would you think the future is, in terms

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of legal travellers' sites, the money is there, to think it would

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be so hard to set up? -- de think it won't be so hard to set up?

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think where it is a political hot potato, where it can be an

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advantage to oppose it, it can be tricky in those circumstances to

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deliver the site that is needed. Time for our round-up of the

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political stories in 60 seconds. Derby's planning committee has

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given the go-ahead for a �20 million a Velodrome and concert

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venue near Pride Park. The council hopes to sell the naming rights.

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The Burton MP has pleaded that the Chancellor to spare a thought for

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East Midlands beer drinkers. Will he take his Treasury colleagues

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south Arabia and tell them not to put up the duty on the great

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British pint? Derby councillors looks set to proceed with

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controversial cuts to voluntary groups in the city.

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Finally, a mother says she is outraged after her son was strip-

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searched by the police. Officers were told that police were carrying

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drugs in their underwear. Two boys were arrested and released on bail.

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Do you understand about mothers out rage? -- tu understand that a

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mother's outrage? I understand totally. The police say they

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followed the guidelines totally. can't imagine the police got it

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wrong. I would like to hear their account. Your view of this? I think

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they did. I think they were unnecessarily heavy-handed. Drugs

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are a menace, and the need to address that that schools. I think

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the police went to be too far -- went a bit too far. There are ways

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to do this without strip-searched in them. Particularly without their

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parents' knowledge. They could have notified the parents. They say they

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notified the parents, it might have tipped the children off to the

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wrong doing. I think the way they handled this has alienated the

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police. I have the greatest respect for Derbyshire Police. I know the

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Chief Constable. They acted within the guidelines, but maybe the

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guidelines are wrong. They need to take account into the situation.

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brief update at patients at Rampton Hospital. -- a brief update on

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patients. They are still getting disability allowance. I simply

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don't understand why patients in hospital getting this form support.

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Please believe me, I will still go back to ask questions. -- are not

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getting the support. This argument is going round and round. It seems

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to be it bouncing back and four. -- 4th back and forth. We come back to

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talk about this? I hope not. I'll talk to the government about this.

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Andrew Neil and Marie Ashby with the latest political news and debate.

Andrew Neil interviews John Cridland, Chairman of the CBI on what businesses want from Wednesdays Budget. Sir Simon Jenkins, Chairman of the National Trust, and Stephen Hammond MP go head to head over the Government's plans to change planning laws affecting the countryside.


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