11/11/2012 Sunday Politics North East and Cumbria


Andrew Neil and Richard Moss with the latest political news and debate, including interviews with the defence secretary Philip Hammond and deputy Labour leader Harriet Harman.

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A big increase in size and a new name for the Territorial Army, but


can it really plug the gaps left by a government cuts in the regular


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2142 seconds


The warmest of welcomes to your local part of the show. Coming up,


is the government right to use the expanded Territorial Army to fill


gaps left by cuts to the regular armed forces? Joining me to talk


about that and the rest of the week's news,... Stephen Hughes,


let's talk about the Bishop of Durham becoming the head of the


Church of England. What do you make of it? I'm pleased that he's been


elevated in that way. It is a pity he wasn't around a bit longer. I


was very impressed by his grasp of the problems facing young people in


the area. He has got the ability that will allow him to form --


perform extremely well at a national level. The new Archbishop


of Canterbury, it poses quite a challenge for the Prime Minister.


He's been outspoken on poverty -- and the economy. It is wonderful


what he has done so far. I have seen him up with the Banking


Commission and he said a lot of things I would like to hear more.


It is wonderful that we have a genuine theologian going down from


the North East the Westminster. is also an opponent of gay marriage.


Another potential clash with the Prime Minister. Her we will see


what happens when that pans out. Not worried about it? No. OK. Let's


move on to another subject and verb government is to expand a


Territorial Army. It will be doubled in size. With a cut of


20,000 personnel planned in the regular army, can those TA


reservists really fill the gap? I want you to look at the board and


copied down... He Eton Manor School, Newcastle, and in front of class,


Mr Parker. I and the schools inclusion manager, but I have


another responsibility which includes managing the dinner duties.


I am at the liaison officer as well. But Mr Parker is also known as


something else, a major part of. For 90 days a year he serves as a


Territorial Army officer. Today he is in charge of the school's own


cadet force Remembrance Day parade, but he has served with the


Territorial Army all over the world. I've served in Northern Ireland as


an infantry soldier and in 2004 I was deployed to Iraq. In 2009 by


deployed to Afghanistan. The Territorial Army and the army as a


whole, they give you values and standards. If you display those in


schools as well, at the pupils respond well. By and large they


treat you with the same kind of values. In the future Major


Parker's Odette might have more chance of combining a military


career with real guns and an outside job. The government wants


to double the Territorial Army's size. Employers will be given more


idea when staff are needed. At the moment the end of this can be


called up -- caught up adjust a fortnight's notice. What it brings


to us is not easily replicated by the members of staff. Sometimes we


have fat to buy in to replace. We tolerate it and I think we probably


wish he did not have to go off sometimes, but that is the nature


of the beast. One more Remembrance Day when we


paid tribute to the armed forces past, but what will they look like


in the future? The expansion of the TA comes at a


sensitive time. Cuts to the regular army have angered many people. In


this time when money is tight, what is wrong with recruiting more


people like Major Parker, giving them extra training and making them


a key part of the armed forces? Don't get me wrong, I'm a great


supporter of the Territorial Army, I spent many years in the


Territorial Army. It is fantastic. However we have to look at the


Territorial Army as it is now. Basically, it is in a dire


situation. The Territorial Army was piecemeal destroyed in 1999. It has


not recovered since. Car aren't the government saying what they are


going to do? They will improve the training and make them fit for


purpose. Let's look at that. That I will take an example of a local the


Territorial Army unit. There establishment is 100 men. Their


current strength is 54. They have had five recruits through the door


since January this year. Of which two have already departed. The


Territorial Army are haemorrhaging personnel. If this plan goes ahead


and we start recruiting or relying more heavily on the TA, there's a


problem because we will have to make sure there's no overlap


between the regular army getting disbanded for the TA taking over.


Is it just numbers that concern you or are you worried that reservists


will never be able to do the job a regular service -- soldier?


Reservists can do the job very well. It they get the numbers right, that


will be OK? That is the million dollar question, can they get the


numbers? From what I'm hearing, and I speak to territorial officers on


a regular basis, that will be at a tall order. Thank you.


I suppose the allegation is this an attempt to devise a policy on the


cheap. As we changed the way in which we have an army going forward,


as we withdraw from Afghanistan, and as this comes in over a number


of years, with �1.8 billion that the government will commit to it,


you will basically have a territorial reserve, now known as


the Army Reserve, who will be better equipped, better funded, but


a lead and more effective as a fighting force. It won't mean


anything if you can't get the recruits. They have recruited a


local man from Northumberland who will lead the campaign to do that


recruitment. He commanded the forces in Iraq. This smacks of


other government problems. You think of a policy and actually it


takes a lot of catch-up to get to the position you are in. We cut the


regular forces, but there won't be these reservists in place to


replace them. We are not cutting the regular forces now. We are


planning for a long time in the future. None of this happens until


after 2015. Is this a sensible thing? The kind of thing happening


across European countries? It is happening across Europe. It's


estimated that between 2007 and 2014, we will see a 30 doesn't cut


back in defence spending across the European Union. -- 30% cutback.


America is not happy about that. There's another issue. Disbanding


the second Fusiliers is a mistake. If we are bothered about recruiting


reservists, we should also be bothered about recruiting regular


soldiers. The second Fusiliers have been good at that. If they are


disbanded and the forces from the second Fusiliers disburse to less


able regiments elsewhere, we may have a problem as Turk -- in terms


of regular recruits. Have a problem is that you will be expecting


employers to rip least people for longer periods. That will hit


businesses. You heard the concern about the inconvenience. I accept


there's a concern, but the present situation was made very clear in


your film. There's a 14 day lean time. You can be called up within


14 days. The way we will do it in the future is this will be planned


a long time in advance so you will be told of the best part of a year


or 18 months in advance. It is still an extra costs for employers,


an extra burden. High I don't think it is a burden provided it is well


planned and well executed. Shouldn't any responsible employer


be welcoming staff been involved in the TA? Are I think so. The vast


majority do. That teacher said it creates difficulties, but they are


right behind that reservist and that will be generally the case.


Look at the low ball -- local representatives. Councillors are


released from their jobs. This happens in a number of areas of


life. I want to know whether you are reassured by what you're


hearing. Not in the slightest. To get the Territorial Army back to


where it was in 1999 will probably take over 10 years. This time


period goes out of the window. With a corner, it is all very well


saying they will have a year before they are called up, but what


happens if we are faced with a situation such as Iran that could


block any moment and we needed deploy troops very, very rapidly?


We will not be able to do that in future. He is knocking down some of


your argument. I don't accept that we are going to be fighting ten-


year wars in places like Afghanistan and Iraq in the future.


There's no appetite in this country at the present time or going for it


for long ground wars as has been fought in the past. You look at the


example of Libya, not a single British soldier was on the ground


in Libya. Thank you. He could with the police commissioner elections


days away, there's been plenty of debate about how best to tackle


crime and one obvious way is to stop those break the law from doing


it again. It is not that easy. In Cumbria


almost half of the people who go to prison for short sentences reoffend


within 12 months. That is a higher figure than in big cities like


There's quite a good selection. years ago Stephen was sent to


Durham prison for stealing alcohol weeks after being policed. He went


on to refer the end again. His story is not unusual. Almost half


the people in Cumbria given short prison sentences go on to break the


law again. They gave us a train ticket to get me back home to


Carlisle. I had �40 in my pocket and that was it. Get out and get on


with it. Very little support. I could not find work. I got


depressed about it and I slipped back into my old ways. Stephen now


gets that support from a small charity in Carlisle. It works with


addicts who often haven't had help to beat their addictions during


that short time in prison. They come back to their old friends and


their old associations. If they've had drug or alcohol problems in the


past, to move on from that, you need support. Her Cumbria might be


the most sparsely populated area in the country, but when it comes to


reoffending rates in the north-west, it is top of the list. The latest


figures show just over 46% of Cumbrians given short sentences


went on to reoffend within a year of release. That is compared to 38%


in Merseyside and just over 36% in Greater Manchester. Unlike its more


urban neighbours, Cumbria lacks support services to bridge the gap


between prison and life back on civvy street. The population is so


desperately connected. We also need to get some additional results.


That will not be easy. It is also fair to say that we need to try to


create a better voluntary ethos, to get more volunteers involved to


help a real social problem. Ministry of Justice says it is


tackling the shamefully high reoffending rates by introducing a


rehabilitation revolution, but not everyone is convinced that


rehabilitation is the key to tackling reoffending. The public


perception is that prison just is not a deterrent. If we are going to


get offenders turning their lives around and being open to


rehabilitation, the stick has to be a punishment in prison. Not all


offenders are given prison sentences. Some are given community


sentences and those have a much lower rate of reoffending. But


still, more than a third go on to commit further crimes. As well as


people serving community sentences, Cumbria probation Trust plays a


central role in rehabilitating Cumbria's serious prolific


offenders, but it has no mandate of money to support people who have


been in prison for 12 months or less. So statutory agencies are not


funded to address that part of the population. Until something changes


around that, there's going to be difficulties in having resources


available to deal with those offenders. It is well known that


that -- that short sentences are not working and people need some


level of intervention. He the government is reviewing probation


services but it remain so to be seen whether it will help clear-up


Cumbria's reoffending challenges. The position is no better in the


North East. In Durham and Tees Valley, 47 out of every 100 people


sent to prison for less than a year end up reoffending within 12 months


of getting out. You've written a book about the changes you would


like to see in the prison system. What can we do to lower this


depressing rate of reoffending? Prison does work. It is a very good


punishment. But what I would like to see focus upon is what you do


with the prisoner inside. For far too long, incarceration involved 23


hours in a cell doing nothing. 50% of all prisoners can't read or


write. 50% of all prisoners were excluded as children. These people


are struggling, when they come out of prison, to get a job. Your


ability to change the way they behave have to be changed in the


prison itself. If you change that, you changed everything. At the


moment we have 70% reoffending. That is there were four statistic.


You need to have literacy, drug treatment and skills. If you get


those, you will change people. we got the balance wrong between


punishment and rehabilitation? don't think we have. If you look at


the example on the continent, particularly the Nordic countries


within the EU, the number of prisoners by 100,000 of the


population is half what it is here. In their prisons, for the emphasis


is not upon retribution, it is upon rehabilitation. It is on family


visits, training, education, anger management courses, outreach


courses to employers. These are the sorts of things... Usually half the


prison officers in male prisons in countries like Denmark are women.


The emphasis is on normalisation, trying to create a normal


environment for the prisoners. problem with the arguments you've


put his that you get that argument from the Police Federation, but the


public see military courses helping prisoners get qualifications as a


bit of a pampered life and not as a punishment. I don't have any


problem with sending people to prison. Both of us would agree that


if you have committed an offence, present is the right place for you.


Everybody agrees with that, but it is what you do with them in prison.


Either you have them locked up and doing nothing so they will not


change their behaviour. If they can't read or write, they will not


be able to get a job. If they are drug-addicted, of course they will


come out and commit offences. If they have no skills, how can you


ask them to get a job? Per that sounds great, but the reality


appears to be that some of the funding for these rehabilitation


programmes is being cut. Not in the slightest. Doncaster present is a


very successful payment by results present set up under that previous


government and expanded by this government. You have people turning


people around. The payment that the individual prison receives is


increased if they turn the person around and they don't reoffend.


government is looking to pay by results and cut reoffending and


bringing private companies in. Sensible? I've got no fundamental


objection to that. I am concerned about the regime's in the prisons.


Is the emphasis on rehabilitation, normalisation? If it is only about


punishment and retribution, it will not work. For the Nordic example...


The fact is that in those countries, the reoffending rate is half what


it is here. I talked about the caring approach inside prisons and


I think that works. I've read some of your ideas... I'm glad you've


read it! Literacy classes, drug programmes. They will cost money up


front and your Justice Secretary says he wants to see the money


spent go down. How we get the prison system cheaper and better is


you have less people going to prison. That will benefit the


public. It has to go in up front. A there's some consideration now, but


the way forward, Uni proper mentoring. Yi need people being


turned around. Are you convinced the government is prepared to spend


money? In the old days, five or 10 years ago, there were 47 key


performance indicators for a prison. All of them were security based.


Now the fundamental change is it is all about rehabilitation. Thank you.


When times get tough, one option is to sell off the family silver. That


is what Newcastle council has decided to do by flocking one of


A unique piece of Newcastle's Heritage is to be sold to hop luck


and �90 million funding gap. The Lord Mayor's official coach Dyldin


7090 it is up for sale. David Cameron paid a flying visit to


Carlisle on Friday end of next week's Police Commissioner


elections. Ministers say they are helping more people off benefit and


into work. That is not the view of Stephen Hedman. This government are


forcing sick people who have got cancer, who have got brain damage


and who are dying back into work. It is a disgrace. When will this


barbarity end? Her for Middlesbrough by-election will be


held on 29th November. The Conservatives will select in the


next few days. The government has called off the privatisation of


Durham jail, by three companies are still bidding to run Northumberland


prison. Ash dieback disease has been identified and clears from


County Durham and tie inside. -- I haven't persuaded my boss to get


me a car yet! Let's talk about ashtrays. This is not what we want


from Europe. What is your view on how this has been handled? Be it


has been spreading since the early 1990s, starting in Poland, Baltic


states, Germany, Sweden, Finland. At European level we have a plant


health regime that is being reviewed and has been for the last


two years and that should be finished in the next few months. It


will include a strengthening of early warning systems.


Unfortunately these things cost money. It is worth bearing in mind


that we need these mechanisms in place at European level. Or was it


inevitable that it would spread to the UK? Has their government done


anything wrong? I don't think so. I think for spores that they have


this disease can be weaned born and were probably wind born into the


areas affected in Norfolk and have probably spread further in any case.


There have been other pests we have managed to either a rest of control.


The Asian longhorn beetle, fire blight, these things have been far


more limited. In this case, the national identity cone reporting of


his problem was lacking across the continent. How worried should we


be? It has been found close to your consistency -- constituency. It was


found most recently in well there. It was found in a very mature tree


just outside the National Park. There's containment taking place.


It is going to be a problem and everyone should report any worrying


signs of deterioration to the Forestry Commission, who are doing


a fantastic job. Is there any danger that we could see parts of


the countryside shut down? I do think that is a real problem.


is an airborne disease. The there's nothing you can do about it


travelling. You just have to be very, very watchful. The Forestry


Commission have to watch our four Where does pop up. And also we have


to stop imports. Labour have criticised the government for


inaction. They would do that, wouldn't they? The first ever


discovery of this was in February. So in February to October, they


visited over 1,000 sites and have chopped down 100,000 trees. Thank


you. That's about it from us. You can keep up-to-date by following


the on Twitter. There's more on ideas on how to reform our prisons.


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