Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 10:44 am on 5th March 1993.

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Photo of Sir Peter Emery Sir Peter Emery , Honiton 10:44 am, 5th March 1993

It would be wrong if I did not welcome the parts of the speech of the hon. Member for Cardiff, South and Penarth (Mr. Michael), who spoke from the Opposition Front Bench, that showed a considerable conversion by the Labour party. It seems that it is prepared to work to strengthen action against crime. That has not always been its stance.

On this issue, the country does not want party polemics. Those who sit on the Front Benches must work in co-operation to deal with a national problem. All our constituents want to see positive action to reduce all aspects of crime. I shall make three short points before talking about crime prevention. I am sorry that there has been no reference so far to crimes that are committed by those who are on bail. There is a great need to ensure that those who are on bail do not reoffend. The sentencing policy that is directed to them must be strengthened. We must do everything possible by means of harsh sentencing to ensure that we do not have to do away with the bail system. We must discourage those who are on bail from committing another crime.