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Written Answers — House of Lords: NHS: General Practitioners (10 March 2014)

The Bishop of Norwich: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that there are adequate numbers of general practitioners (GPs) available for primary care needs in England over the next five years in the light of the age profile of current practising GPs, their increasing role as commissioners, and the impact of the introduction of revalidation for all doctors.

Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill — Order of Consideration Motion (6 November 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I rise from this Bench in the absence of my friend the most reverend Primate the Archbishop of Canterbury, who cannot be in his place, to follow up a little on what the noble Lord, Lord Lawson, said. I know that your Lordships have sometimes observed that when these Benches are full, the General Synod must be in session and the Bishops are absconding. We sometimes are, of course,...

War Memorials — Question (18 July 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, while I am sure the Minister is aware that the Church of England does not have sole responsibility to add names to war memorials but would be glad to work with others on this important issue, is he aware of the work being undertaken by the Church of England, the Imperial War Museum and the War Memorials Trust together to develop educational materials linked to the centenary of World...

Civil Legal Aid (Financial Resources and Payment for Services) Regulations 2013 — Motion of Regret (17 July 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, a key reference in this Motion of Regret is to “vulnerable people”, which is why this non-lawyer dares to stand amid such legal luminaries and feels a bit vulnerable himself. A civilised country is one where we are all free under the law and where vulnerable people are not left defenceless against unjust treatment by another person, organisation or even an agent of...

Mesothelioma Bill [HL]: Report (17 July 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I support this group of amendments and I thank the Minister for his work, which was well illustrated at the beginning of this debate. I knew very little about mesothelioma until I saw its debilitating effects on friends, including the former Bishop of Peterborough, Ian Cundy, who some Members may recall died in 2009. The knowledge that the cause of this cancer has been lurking in...

Forestry: Independent Panel Report — Question (17 July 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords—

Forestry: Independent Panel Report — Question (17 July 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, can the Minister assure us that the Government will keep faith with the recommendation to establish guardians of the public forest estate and, if so, tell us what their role will be in relation to the new management organisation that is being established?

Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill: Third Reading (15 July 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I support this group of amendments. A review of the benefits accruing to all survivors under occupational pension schemes is both desirable and necessary. The principle of equity under the law for those whom the law holds to have the same status in relation to the deceased is a sound one. Hard-pressed pension schemes must be tempted to limit benefits, and the complexity of some...

Leveson Inquiry — Motion to Take Note (11 January 2013)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, the 2,000 pages of the Leveson report makes the New Testament seem a lightweight document, at least in terms of bulk. But it is important to remember why the report came to be written: it was the consequence of national, moral outrage. Anyone who believes that Britain's moral conscience is duller than it was might do well to reflect on our collective response to the phone hacking...

Online Safety Bill [HL] — Second Reading (9 November 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Baroness, Lady Howe, for introducing the Bill, which is both principled and practical and has an elegant simplicity that is not characteristic of all proposed legislation. The revelations concerning Jimmy Savile have shocked the nation and it is right that we are shocked. We are much less tolerant, as a society, of inappropriate sexual contact between...

NHS: Death at Home — Question for Short Debate (8 November 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Warner, for securing this important debate. We should probably all declare an interest as speakers since the one certainty is that we shall all die. We speak of dying as a process which occurs in the last stages of life but since, each day, we are moving nearer to the moment of our death, we could be said to be dying all the time. Living and...

Olympic and Paralympic Games 2012 — Motion to Take Note (8 November 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, this is a welcome debate and I am grateful to the noble Baroness, Lady Doocey, for securing it. Like others, I look forward enormously to the maiden speech of the noble Lord, Lord Deighton. The Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer were a wonderful antidote to the cynicism which bedevils too much of our public life. Quite apart from the brilliant organisation and the...

Housing Benefit (Amendment) Regulations 2012 — Motion to Approve (6 November 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, there is a logic, if a rather cold one, in suggesting that those on housing benefit should not be supported from the public purse if they live in homes larger than they need. However, as we have already heard, it is the lack of availability of alternative accommodation in reasonable proximity that may make this proposal so socially disruptive and prompts me to support this...

Universities: Overseas Students — Question (5 November 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, at the University of East Anglia in Norwich we are seeing a very marked downturn in applications from postgraduate science students from India. This is consistent with evidence from 2010-11 that, when one lifts China out of the figures, there has been a rapid reversal in Britain's relative attractiveness to overseas students. If the Government are not going to lift students out of...

Legal Aid — Question (31 January 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, what impact does the Minister expect the cuts to have, in particular, on disabled people who rely very heavily on law centres for advice on housing and welfare issues? Might this not be a further blow to those who are already disadvantaged in making their case to tribunals?

Pakistan — Question (30 January 2012)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, as we approach the first anniversary of the assassination of Shahbaz Bhatti, the Christian Minorities Minister, in Pakistan, does the Minister detect any signs of hope that Christians and other minorities will be able to play their fullest and most active part in the democratic process there?

Immigration: Students — Question (15 November 2011)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, theological and bible colleges are generally small institutions but highly cross-cultural in character because of their international students. The chances of these international students abusing their immigration status seems tiny, yet these institutions have to go through the same procedures as large universities at a very high and unsustainable per capita cost. Can the Minister...

Food: Prices — Question (14 November 2011)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, is the Minister aware of the rapid growth of food banks around the country-a Christian initiative which is gaining ever wider support? I declare an interest as the patron of Norwich Foodbank, which has assisted 860 families and individuals in just the past three months. What might be done to better integrate this generous voluntary provision with the work of statutory agencies?

Localism Bill: Second Reading (7 June 2011)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I begin by saying that a family bereavement this morning means that if the House sits much longer than the estimated rising time I may have to leave to return to Norwich. I hope that that will not be necessary, but I apologise to the House if that proves to be so. There have been frequent pleas from these Benches over the years to listen to the voice of local communities, so the...

Communities — Debate (12 May 2011)

The Bishop of Norwich: My Lords, I am delighted to follow the excellent maiden speech of the noble Lord, Lord Noon, and hope that we will indeed hear from him very often in your Lordships' House. His services to the British food industry have been enormous, and I imagine that quite a number of us in the Palace of Westminster have taken advantage of the ready meals produced by Noon Products Ltd, especially after...

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