You may recall, Madam Speaker, that I was interrupted in my speech last week when the Government hung on for yet another night and refused to move the 10 o'clock motion because, once more, they were frightened of losing a vote in the House. I was on my feet in support of my hon. Friend the Member for Dumbarton (Mr. McFall) and of the amendments that he had moved. Our contention was that electronic tagging should be part of the supervision and probation process, and that it should be used only as an alternative to imprisonment.
The Government are still not giving us the guidelines that we think are needed. They are not giving the judiciary the guidelines that they would need. We do not know, for example, what offenders, or offences for that matter, would be targeted and subject to the orders.
In Committee, the Minister guaranteed that this would be a pilot scheme, but the only research that is of any use is from America. It is widely available and shows that the
equipment alone will not ensure a successful programme".
Electronic tagging will work only if other measures are in place. The research says:
The involvement of professional social workers is key.
My main concern involves the electronic tagging of people under 16. The American research tells that such tagging worked best with people who already had some internal control and who needed just an extra nudge. I ask again: what offences and offenders does the Minister have in mind, because the under-16s who would be subject to the measure would not need just an extra nudge and would often be from dysfunctional families? They would come not from middle-class homes, with parents who watch their every move and who keep them on track day in, day out, but from homes where family life had often broken down.
If the Minister would give us the guidance on what offenders and offences he was talking about, we might know what offences to address, but, at the moment, we do not, so I must assume that this applies across the board. I have no guidance from the Minister or the Government, and neither do the judiciary. The Government are asking the House to pass the orders on to sheriffs and to judges, who will have to implement them as best they can because we are not getting the guidance that is required.
My experience is that not many children from my street are subject to any court orders. However, I fear that many children in the poorer parts of my constituency would fall into that category. There is nothing to suggest that children with a life style similar to mine would suffer. Many children are in peripheral housing schemes where there are no facilities and bad housing and where schools are not properly equipped by the Government. Their lives are not good and they do not see a bright future. They have nothing to look forward to, and they are the children who would be affected. The last thing that such children need is the pressure on their families that electronic tagging would bring.
In many cases the mother in a house in which the family had broken down would also be the gaoler, and that is a difficult role to give anyone without the backing of social work departments and probation officers. As far as I can see, no such backing is on offer.
In Committee, the Minister said that one of the relevant crimes was football hooliganism. There is no great evidence of football hooliganism in Scotland, because we addressed that a long time ago. I am at a loss to know what sort of crimes he has in mind. Would truancy by those under the age of 16 be relevant? A child playing truant from school could be electronically tagged at home for 12 hours. The removal of the tag would not be an inducement for the child to go to school if the only time that the child was free was during school hours. Tags may also be used on fine defaulters who are over the age of 16.
Does my hon. Friend agree that one of the best inducements to under-16-year-olds not to play truant would be to offer them the prospect of a real job when they leave school? Perhaps the Government want to experiment with electronic tagging. In view of the closeness of some of the votes in the next few weeks, Tory Whips might try it on Conservative Members.
I am unhappy with that suggestion, because our Whips might try it on us. However, my hon. Friend's first point was excellent. Tagging will not encourage children to look for a better way of life. The only way to do that is to give them hope. Some 20 per cent. of families in Britain do not have an income from a job coming into the household, and that does not encourage a better life. The proposal will not help them.
I am concerned about the way that the matter has been handled, and especially about its effect on those who are under the age of 16. However, people over that age are also affected. Was fine default one of the crimes that the Minister has in mind? In Committee, the Minister failed to answer questions. What would the tag entail? When it is switched off will it still activate other electronic equipment such as that at supermarket doors? We often set equipment off in airports with pagers and mobile telephones. I understand that people will wear the tags even when they are deactivated. [Interruption.]
Would the Minister like to intervene? Will the tags activate equipment in supermarkets and other stores? Are we putting the mark of Cain on people? Are we saying, "Here is an offender"? Will people who did not buy a television licence be stopped at supermarket doors? Will we point a finger at them in public? None of those questions has been answered.
We are discussing the introduction of an order requiring a piece of equipment, but we do not know to whom the order will apply or what crimes they will have had to commit. We do not know the effect that the order will have on their overall life style or on their families. We are also not guaranteeing the involvement of the professionals who will be necessary to implement an order, such as social workers and probation officers.
We seem to be throwing in a measure that has not been well researched, and not researched at all in Scotland. There have been a few pilot schemes in England, but they have not yet been concluded. The only research we have comes from America, and that has proved that the measure is utterly useless. It has not served its intended purpose, and, as the Minister told us in Committee, its application could cost up to £10,000 per person. Paying that amount would not be very clever if the order was made because of non-payment of the television licence fee or because wee Johnny was kicking a football in the street after his mother could not get him in after 8 o'clock at night.
Before we accept the measure, the Minister will have to tell us much more about it: the type of crimes to which it will apply, the type of people whom he thinks will be wearing the tags and how we will deal with the equipment problems I have mentioned. He must also tell us the cost of putting the system into every home, as it will have to include a telephone and modem. Presumably the Government will have to install the system and pick up the bills for running it. I should tell the Minister that I have some people in my constituency who could break out of Alcatraz. I do not think that an electronic tag will induce them to stay at home. The Minister has a lot more work to do on the measure, and he will have to answer some of our questions before it progresses any further.
The hon. Member for Paisley, North (Mrs. Adams) has made a most compelling case against the proposals. She was particularly right to say that the Bill provides absolutely no guidance to the judiciary generally and to sheriffs particularly on the criteria that should be employed when electronic tagging is applied to those over 16 or to those under 16. One could argue very strongly that the Government's decision to extend the proposal, by tabling Amendment No. 245, places a far more acute obligation on them to prescribe the criteria by which this form of penal disposal should be used.
If one introduces a measure that is essentially a gimmick, surely one has an intellectual if not a political obligation to justify its introduction. If one intends to apply the measure to under-16s—who are, by convention and statute, dealt with differently in virtually every aspect of our civil and criminal law—the obligation is all the more pressing. Thus far, the Government have not discharged that obligation.
As hon. Members have already said, the measure is untargeted and may very possibly have the effect of contradicting the Government's apparent attempt to create more consistency in sentencing. If one introduces a policy that contradicts other policies, surely one has a duty to explain why the contradiction should be allowed.
As the hon. Member for Dumbarton (Mr. McFall) said when we last met to discuss the measure, the Government have given absolutely no indication of the resources that will be available to implement it. We are told that public expenditure is under severe and critical review, but this measure will undoubtedly increase the burden upon the taxpayer. We can rest assured that calculations have been done in the Scottish Office, but the House has not been admitted to the privity of that information. No doubt the Government do not want to tell us just how expensive this kind of operation can be.
If the Government have had the opportunity to read the Home Office research study No. 163, which deals with the trials in Greater Manchester, Norfolk and Berkshire in 1995–96, they will know that the average cost per offender in the trial was £18,000. That is approximately 30 times the cost of supervising an offender and greater than the cost of keeping a person in prison for six months. That is my estimate of the costs. Does the Minister have a better estimate for the House?
I now turn to the tagging of children under 16. We know that, in the Scottish system, children under 16 rarely reach the courts because of the children's panel system, which is the envy of many other jurisdictions. What estimate have Ministers made of the precise number of individuals under 16 years of age for whom tagging would be relevant? We look forward to hearing about that from the Minister. In this context, generalisations will not suffice.
What is the position with regard to the pilot study? Is it still under way? The date of 4 January has been mentioned as the date of the conclusion of the pilot study. If that is so, where is the evaluation? Are we to be expected to deal with the matter without the analysis and evaluation of a pilot study being available to the House? I know that the Government are urgent in their desire to put this legislation on the statute book, but is it seriously being suggested that it is sensible to legislate when information directly relevant to the issue we are discussing, which has been gathered as a result of an experiment, is not to be shared with the House? To coin a phrase, that is Mickey Mouse legislating, which does nothing for the credit of the Government.
These matters, and in particular the effort to pass legislation to impose tagging on those under 16, have not gone without comment, particularly from the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland. Letters were reported extensively in The Herald of 9 January 1997. We hear that the Secretary of the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland—no bleeding heart liberal he, and he will no doubt regard that as a compliment—wrote:
The prospect of tagging children under the age of 16 tends to lead away from this general philosophy".
He is referring to the current approach to those who have offended under the age of 16. He continues:
An electronic tagging device could be a backward step as such tagging would be viewed as a form of additional punishment and stand as a marker on the child, the likely consequence of which would be to expose the child to ridicule. The more hardened offenders would probably regard the tag as a trophy.
Did the Minister gel that letter and did he read it? What interpretation did he put on its terms?
Does the hon. and learned Gentleman realise that the consultation exercise drew 102 responses, four of which were from police forces? One hundred and one out of the 102 responses were against. There was one response for, and I will keep the House in suspense as to who that one was from.
I suppose that one might say that if 101 responses were against, that was probably 101 damnations.
Mr. Cameron continues:
If a child merits lagging then, generally speaking, he or she is unlikely to view it as an incentive to better behaviour. Indeed, it is more likely to be regarded by some 'harder' children as an achievement … The ultimate responsibility for the management and administration of electronic monitoring would or should fall squarely on the shoulders of the local authority and not the police where children are concerned.
There is a demonstration of an eager, anxious and determined body of opinion in Scotland which is desperately awaiting the passing into law of these provisions so that it can be part of it. The association is saying, "Don't let the police have responsibility for this. Pass the responsibility to the local authority." Did the Minister get the letter? Did he read the letter? What weight does he attach to the letter and what weight does he attach to the views of those who are most directly concerned with crime and punishment? Alternatively, has he on this occasion simply swept away the views of the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland because they do not coincide with the prejudices and gimmick-ridden approach to penal affairs which now, unhappily, characterise the Scottish Office?
Has the hon. and learned Gentleman considered the safety aspect? Tagging equipment might, in some workplaces, be regarded by management and employees as a safety hazard.
That may well be so for those over 16, although we do not normally expect those under 16 to be in factories, where such issues might arise. However, I accept the hon. Gentleman's general point that someone carrying such a tag might be at risk when performing some activities because of the presence of the tag.
The hon. and learned Gentleman criticised the proposals partly because the local authorities, rather than the police, would supervise the young people. Would he like to comment on the fact that the local authority has overall responsibility for those sentenced to community service, which is the present equivalent of probationary service?
The hon. Gentleman states the present position, but I am not sure of the point that he is trying to make. My point was that the police are clear that they do not want anything to do with the administration of these proposals. Coupled with the other aspects of the letter to which I have referred, that is a clear thumbs down from the Association of Chief Police Officers (Scotland).
The hon. Lady has a particular interest in children's issues and makes effective and worthwhile contributions to many of our debates on such subjects. Her intervention underlines the fact that what we are discussing today is a gimmick to be introduced into the penal system not because we know it to be worth while—we have not had the evaluation of the pilot study—or because it has been proved universally effective elsewhere, but because the Government believe that it might attract a headline here or there.
Hon. Members have already referred to pilot studies that have been carried out abroad. Experience abroad suggests that tagging works only if there is close supervision and lasts for a short period. Where in the Bill are those criteria set out? Nowhere. Experience abroad suggests that offenders must have a stable life style. Where in the Bill do we find an obligation on a judge to take account of the family circumstances of a person on whom a tag is to be placed? Nowhere. The report into the United Kingdom study, to which I have already referred, concluded:
friction between members of the family when one was undergoing electronic monitoring may be a potentially serious consequence of the system.
All the evidence is against the proposals. We have heard nothing approaching a reasoned, rational, intellectual justification for them. One is driven to the conclusion that the issue is not the proper treatment of children, but the capture of what is thought to be the law and order agenda, as evidenced by a tabloid headline here and there. In the run-up to a general election we expect that sort of thing, but it is wrong of the Government to propose measures that are so clearly unjustified either by principle or by experience elsewhere. If the Government had any proper regard for the penal system in Scotland, they would withdraw the proposals immediately.
I shall be fairly brief. The hon. Member for Paisley, North (Mrs. Adams) who stated, "We got over the problems of alcohol abuse and hooliganism at football matches." The Government certainly did that by introducing legislation during the 1980s. I was not in the House at the time, but I suspect that Opposition Members opposed those changes. [HON. MEMBERS: "No."] That surprises me. It must have been the one and only law and order measure that they did not oppose.
I certainly welcome that legislation. I am quite sure that the Government pushed it along and that it was a case of Scotland first and others following. It was good legislation.
The hon. and learned Member for Fife, North-East (Mr. Campbell) appeared to suggest that we should impose on sheriffs strict guidelines on sentencing. I agree with him to some extent, but I find it difficult to understand why he finds it appropriate to set out detailed instructions for sheriffs before they can impose the use of monitoring devices.
Perhaps the fault is mine. I suspect that it is a problem of expression rather than comprehension. When we introduce such a radically different measure, and invest sheriffs with a discretion in that respect, we have a duty to lay down the criteria that they are entitled, but not bound, to take into account.
I am quite sure that the Bill does that. From my understanding of it, and perhaps beyond the comprehension of the hon. and learned Gentleman who made such an insulting comment, the Bill contains an element of choice in that individuals will be able to choose whether or not to wear a monitoring device. As far as I am aware, it is an alternative to custody.
Opposition Members have referred to children who will be affected by the measure. Let us get down to the hard facts. In some of the areas to which the hon. Member for Paisley, North referred, children of 14 and 15 are making life an absolute misery for their peers and for society in general. The measure is aimed at children who may have 15, 16, 20 or 30 offences lined up against them. They appear before a children's panel, they are told off and then they are back on the streets. Perhaps the children's panel will be able to utilise the legislation through the courts. I recognise that children's panels can pass on their cases to the courts to be judged by sheriffs.
It does not, because children's panels have the power to pass on cases involving young offenders to the courts. The provision could well be in their minds when they do so. It is a decision for the panels, but they are not dealing with the problems on our streets as effectively as I would like.
The measure imposes an additional facility to be utilised to control hard-line offenders for the benefit of Scottish society, and I am certainly prepared to give it a chance. If it is good it will be used by the courts, and if it is not it will be abandoned.
The issue in this debate is whether electronic tagging should be extended to people under 16 years of age. The speech of the hon. Member for Ayr (Mr. Gallie) showed that he does not understand the debate or the nature of the youngsters who are likely to come into contact with the new powers that will be given to the courts. My hon. Friend the Member for Paisley, North (Mrs. Adams) was right when she said that the power would be almost exclusively applied to youngsters who come from deprived areas.
The hon. Gentleman challenged my hon. Friend and asked what evidence she had for that assertion. I can tell him that my hon. Friend the Member for Dundee, West (Mr. Ross) and I spent a day sitting in the sheriff court watching case after case—including offences of theft, assault, burglary and housebreaking—and, invariably, the offenders came from similar socio-economic backgrounds and from the same parts of the city of Dundee. They had faced the same economic deprivation. If Tory Members of Parliament spent more time thinking about the causes of crime, instead of ways to chase the criminals, we might live in a safer society.
I do not know whether my hon. Friend has visited his local constabulary headquarters, as I have, and asked to see the old birching book in which are recorded the names of those who had been birched. The same names appeared again and again. Those people came from a deprived background and could not break out of criminal behaviour. They were frequently flogged, but there was no improvement in their behaviour.
My hon. Friend makes a pertinent point. The hon. Member for Ayr has said in the past that he would like a return to birching or flogging of offenders. Those in favour of birching argue that, once people have been birched, they will not come back for more, but the evidence shows that people were birched more than once. It is not the punishment that deters people from offending, but the circumstances that they live in. Their situations and the people they mix with encourage criminal behaviour. Offenders also tend to believe that they will not get caught, so they do not worry much about the punishment. It is time that Conservative Ministers and Back Benchers began to wake up to that fact.
The issue is why the courts should be given the power to extend electronic tagging to under-16s. The consultation exercise that the Government carried out at the end of last year has been mentioned. Indeed, in our debate on Monday, the Minister accepted that those who were consulted were "overwhelmingly opposed" to giving the new power to children's panels. When he was questioned directly by my hon. Friend the Member for Linlithgow (Mr. Dalyell), he accepted that the police were opposed to an extension of the power.
If the children's panels will deal with the majority of young offenders, and if everyone who has been consulted—including the police—opposes giving the children's panels powers to impose electronic tagging orders, why are the Government persisting? The Minister tried to base an argument on the number of young offenders who go before the courts rather than the children's panels. He said:
In 1994, only 171 young offenders had a charge proved against them in court."—[Official Report, 20 January 1997; Vol. 288, c. 715.]
He also accepted that those 171 young offenders were guilty of the more serious offences. We must question whether electronic tagging would be appropriate for such young offenders.
The Convention of Scottish Local Authorities has conducted much research into the Government's pilot schemes, and other electronic tagging schemes throughout the world, and come to the conclusion that electronic tagging is suitable only for a certain type of offender. It said that the monitoring period—the period during which offenders are tagged—should be short. If the Minister is saying that electronic tagging will be used for youngsters who have committed serious offences, why would a short period of electronic tagging be appropriate? I suggest that it is not in any sense appropriate.
COSLA said that electronic tagging should be targeted on offenders who have a stable home base. As my hon. Friend the Member for Paisley, North said, youngsters who commit such serious offences do not come from stable homes. It is therefore not appropriate for them to be electronically tagged. Indeed, one of the ways in which to deal with such youngsters is to remove them from their home base, since it can often be the reason for their offending in the first place. Why should they be electronically tagged and confined to a place that is unsuitable for them?
COSLA said that another criterion of the scheme is that it should be targeted on offenders with secure employment and economic independence. I wonder how many of the 171 youngsters who ended up in court in 1994 had secure employment or economic independence. I suggest that the answer is nil. Why on earth the Minister is going ahead with the proposal is beyond me.
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that page 24 of "Curfew Orders with Electronic Monitoring" says:
The majority said they would agree to be lagged again … Avoiding custody was an important consideration, as was not jeopardising one's employment, or the chance of it"?
We are talking about young offenders who are guilty of serious offences. It turned out that, of the 171 young offenders who were before the courts in 1994, only 25 were given any kind of detention. Only a fraction of those 25 would qualify for an electronic tagging order. Is the Minister seriously suggesting that youngsters who commit serious crimes—the kind of youngsters who the hon. Member for Ayr says terrorise communities—should be put back into the very same communities and electronically tagged rather than disposed of in detention centres? I do not think that that makes any sense.
The idea of electronic tagging is crazy. No one in the House, including hon. Members behind the Minister supports it. As the hon. and learned Member for Fife. North-East (Mr. Campbell) said, it is an election gimmick in an effort to grab the law and order agenda. It will not work, and in a few months' time the Minister will not be in his post. Thank God for that.
Many fine points in the debate have shown the hollowness of the Government's proposal for electronic tagging for under-16s.
The hon. and learned Member for Fife, North-East (Mr. Campbell) mentioned the pilot projects and the results of them. There have been no pilot projects in Scotland, either on adults or on under-16s. The financial memorandum to the Bill states that the pilot projects would be cost free, yet in England they cost £1.5 million. The fact that no resources are forthcoming from the Government blows a hole in the idea.
I should like to take the Minister through the history of the matter, because it is important to put it on the record. On 17 June, a White Paper was published, the responses to which had to be in by 31 July. There was no mention of electronic tagging for 16-year-olds. The Bill was published in October, immediately after the Queen's Speech, and there was no mention of electronic tagging in it. The Bill went into Committee in November, yet there was no mention of electronic tagging until near the end of that month, when the Government announced a consultation exercise and asked individuals to submit responses by 4 January—notwithstanding the Christmas and new year holidays.
In the debate last week, the genesis of the idea was mentioned. I have some information to share with the House. I received a "Dear John" letter, dated 21 January, from the chairman of Securicor plc, Sir Neil MacFarlane, the former Minister with special responsibility for sport, drawing to my attention the good work that the company does on the issue of electronic tagging. Mindful that the Government are conducting a consultation exercise in Scotland, and ready to undertake work on their behalf, he says:
In Scotland, the Government is now consulting on whether electronic monitoring should be made available to children's hearings in considering compulsory measures of supervision for children under 16 referred to them on offence grounds.
When the hon. Gentleman got that letter, did it occur to him to speculate on how Sir Neil MacFarlane had such information, especially relating to children's hearings, which had not up to that point been in the public domain?
That is a matter for the Minister. I was being charitable; we need an equal mix of charity and forensic ability. I am providing the charity and the hon. and learned Gentleman has shown the forensic ability. Let us hope that the Minister provides the eloquence; I fear that the third leg may disappoint us.
Sir Neil said that his project officers had undertaken a close study and that he was sharing the results of his research with me. He quoted one extremely profound statement:
It is established beyond any possible peradventure throughout the world that tagging is of value in the field of criminal justice. Wherever those operating the criminal justice system want it to succeed, it succeeds.
Was that statement from a senior judge in Scotland or from the most senior judge in England and Wales? No. It was from Mr. Tom Stacey of the Offenders Tag Association. It is nonsense and rubbish, and there are nothing but commercial interests at stake.
There were 102 responses to the consultation exercise over the six-week period, of which 101 were against, including four from police authorities. I want to share my secret with the House, and tell right hon. and hon. Members that the one person who was unequivocally in favour was the hon. Member for Ayr (Mr. Gallie).
The hon. Gentleman does himself and his party no justice. The core question was question 3:
Would electronic tagging be appropriate to supervision requirements for young people under 16?
I have the 102 responses, no thanks to the Government. I had to seek them through the Library; it took us nine days to get them from the Scottish Office. The responses to the question run to six or seven pages, and give detailed observations on why it is not appropriate. I want to share with the House the answer given by the hon. Member for Ayr to that most profound question. His answer, in full, was: "Yes." He added a note at the end, saying:
I trust my comments, which do require expansion, are helpful.
Let the hon. Gentleman expand on why he is the odd person out in Scotland.
Is that so? Was that the whole story? Perhaps I blinked and missed it. If that is the whole story, the House and me country will say that electronic tagging, as advocated by the hon. Gentleman, is unacceptable. He goes on about how we should support the police; he will no doubt say that Scotland is voting against tagging for under-16s whereas England and Wales voted for it. The reason, as he well knows, is that we have a unique justice system in Scotland, with children's hearings, and it is the envy of the world, including England and Wales.
My hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn (Mr. Straw) has been up to Scotland to observe the children's hearings system, in which we all take pride, whether we come from the local authority, the police, or the system itself. The system does not apportion blame to under-16-year-olds but tries to find out what the issues and the problems are, so that supervision and assistance can be offered to young people who find themselves in difficulties. Most of all, it offers support to parents and others in the community.
In Committee, we had a constructive debate, as the hon. Gentleman will agree, and there was no hint—nothing on the horizon—about tagging for under-16s. We saw through the exercise at the end of November: it was patent nonsense then, and it remains patent nonsense today. We have the support of 101 individuals and organisations, and the hon. Gentleman is isolated on the issue.
No, I am going to educate the hon. Gentleman, even if he does not want me to; he will have to sit there and listen. He said that the police had to be supported. Fife constabulary said:
The most likely reaction from many children would be to regard the need for tagging in their particular case as a 'badge of honour'. There is a danger that they would be viewed by their peers as role models.
The Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland said:
The whole ethos of the current system is the fact that it is care based and by its very nature strives to place the child's needs as the first priority. The prospect of tagging children under the age of
16 tends to lead away from this central philosophy. Electronic tagging would simply add another level to the current care arrangements which would probably be of minimal effect and, under the present philosophy, inappropriate. Although tagging could be advantageous as an option for the courts when dealing with adult offenders, its use on children would be generally inappropriate and could serve to be counter-productive.
The Association of Scottish Police Superintendents said:
The overwhelming view was very much against the concept. … for younger children. Tagging would hugely divert attention from the positive purposes of supervision. Far from being the solution to the problem, supervision becomes the problem itself.
The Scottish Police Federation said:
At this time, we do not believe that electronic tagging would be appropriate to supervision requirements for young people under 16. We do not believe that electronic tagging would be a positive incentive to a child to demonstrate greater responsibility and self-control.
Dumfries and Galloway, and other non-Labour councils, gave responses. Dumfries and Galloway said:
To punish children or to even restrict offending without considering the reasons which bring about this behaviour is a backward step and is not a long term solution for the child or the community … we do believe this is a suggestion which must have come from someone with little understanding of the Hearing System in Scotland.
Hear, hear to that.
If the Minister takes his figures seriously, he will know that there are very few children for whom it would be appropriate. He must address the central question: for which children aged under 16, and in what circumstances, would tagging be appropriate? Are we to have the perverse situation in which the children available for tagging—the 25 who went to court in 1994—are sent, with electronic tags, back to their communities, which, as the hon. Member for Ayr said, they terrorise? Do we want that solution?
Is the measure in the interests of justice? I fear not, because the responses to the consultation have shown that it is not. Is it in commercial interests? If it is, the Minister and the Government have to be condemned. Following the letter from Securicor, the Opposition are fuelled with the belief that there is a commercial consideration. The Minister and the Government will not be forgiven if they go ahead on that basis.
For goodness sake, let the Minister think. Did he read the 101 responses? If he did, what is his view on them? Why are the Government out of step with social work departments, the children's hearing system and the police? Why are the Government alone on this? Why is the Secretary of State repudiating everything that his predecessors have done? Why does he say one minute that he will consult and in the second minute burn the responses? What use is that to the juvenile system in Scotland? If the Government have any care or concern for law and order in Scotland, they will surely consider again. If they do not reflect, their policy should be damned along with the rest of their policies.
The hon. Member for Dumbarton (Mr. McFall) asked what view we took of the consultation exercise. It is not just who, or how many people, said what that matters, but the merits and strength of the arguments. On the merits of the argument, we took the view that the case against introducing tagging into the children's hearing system was compelling. In respect of the criminal justice system, we took the view that the main arguments against tagging, pertinent though they were, could be met by appropriate legislation.
I am answering the points made by the hon. Member for Dumbarton.
On the basis of the arguments, we considered that the balance lay in favour of making tagging available.
The hon. Member for Paisley, North (Mrs. Adams) asked why there was no provision in the Bill to require the court to take into account the family circumstances, which the hon. Member for Glasgow, Maryhill (Mrs. Fyfe) raised earlier. There is such a provision Government amendment No. 247 introduces a new subsection in proposed new section 245A to require the court to obtain and consider information about a child offender's family circumstances before making an order.
The hon. and learned Member for Fife, North-East (Mr. Campbell) referred to research and a Home Office report, which was published in December and is in the Vote Office. It was generally positive on the pilot schemes. It concluded:
Electronic monitoring can be a worthwhile addition to the range of community penalties available to sentences.
I make it clear to the hon. and learned Gentleman that there is scope for regulations to target the use of disposal in the future. Government amendment No. 249 enables regulations to confine the application of the disposal to types of offender, so if the experience of the pilot scheme—or experience thereafter—suggests that the disposal is appropriate to some offenders but not others, regulations can be made under the Bill to amend its use.
The Minister mentioned the pilot scheme. Does he understand why so many Opposition Members find it extraordinary that, having established the pilot scheme, the Government propose to introduce legislation without waiting until they have had the opportunity to evaluate the results? It is like delivering the verdict before the jury has heard the evidence.
The hon. and learned Gentleman is wrong. We are not suggesting the general adoption of these measures throughout Scotland. We believe that it is right to review the effects of the pilot scheme, to have pilot schemes in Scotland first, to make a proper evaluation and then to consider whether it should be taken forward more generally.
The hon. Member for Paisley, North referred to costs. The average cost of the pilot schemes in the first 12 months was £22,140, but that does not accurately predict the cost of an on-going national scheme because it reflects start-up costs, short time scale and the low number of orders initially made. The cost of an average length curlew order with electronic monitoring seems close to that of an average probation order. The monthly cost of tagging is well below half the cost of custody. The proposal is to run two to three pilot schemes in Scotland in the next two to three years. The estimated cost of those schemes is £1·5 million. I have no doubt that they will prove as cost-effective south of the border.
The hon. Member for Paisley, North raised the evidence given by the police. We received responses from the Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland, the Association of Scottish Police Superintendents and the Scottish Police Federation. They expressed reservations. A great concern was that tagging would be inappropriate or ineffective for young offenders. We recognise that there will be many cases in which tagging is inappropriate. That is why our proposals simply enable courts to use tagging in cases in which they consider it more appropriate than a disposal involving custody. Courts would not require tagging in inappropriate circumstances.
Both the chief police officers and the Police Federation suggested that the measure could be given further consideration following the pilot schemes. We recognised the merits of that argument, but also that, because the tagging of young offenders raised distinct issues, pilot schemes involving only adults were unlikely to test conclusively whether tagging could work with particular young offenders. Fife constabulary referred to the need for a
proper evaluation of its likely efficacy".
We agree. We believe that ultimately such an evaluation can be made only by piloting the tagging of young offenders.
The Minister was asked by my hon. Friend the Member for Paisley, North and by me about safety. My hon. Friend referred to safety in supermarkets. I should like to ask about safety in swimming pools. I presume that the equipment is transistorised. It might easily be taken into a swimming pool. If someone drops a transistor into their bath, they are electrocuted. There are practical considerations.
Of course the safety of the individual who has been tagged is a priority. No disposal which risked the safety of the individual would be acceptable. As for the electronic devices, we have moved on a great deal. The results of the pilot scheme showed conclusively that it worked in terms both of accuracy and of reliability. Incidentally, the devices work under water, so there is no concern about that.
We are against the stigmatising of offenders. We equally reject the notion that it will be a badge of honour. We do not believe that it should operate in that way. Tagging may be of value if a court wishes to protect victims and the public from the offender, but wants also to avoid a custodial sentence. It may also have a role to play in helping offenders to break patterns of offending, and act as a deterrent against further offending by restricting the liberty of the offender.
Of course, the person would have to give consent to being tagged. That is an important consideration.
The hon. Member for Falkirk, East (Mr. Connarty) asked about age. Nothing in our amendments would prevent tagging from being piloted initially only with adults. Government amendment No. 249 would enable regulations to prescribe the class of offender in respect of whom restriction of liberty orders might be made. So it would be possible for such regulations initially to limit the availability of the orders to offenders above a certain age, and extend it later if that seemed appropriate. I shall reflect on the views expressed by the hon. Gentleman and others before I make such regulations. His views may persuade us that the pilot schemes should be limited initially to adults. Even if I am not persuaded to introduce such a limitation, the Opposition will have the opportunity to oppose the regulations.
In a debate on the Crime (Sentences) Bill, the hon. Member for Knowsley, North (Mr. Howarth) said:
there may be merit in extending the experiment further, so that young offenders who may commit more serious offences as time goes on can be kept away from custodial sentences.
He went on to recognise
the possibility that some young people will be diverted out of custody but properly supervised via electronic tagging".—[Official Report, Standing Committee A, 28 November 1996; c. 221.]
The Opposition are taking a different position today from that which he took then.
As I said earlier, we want there to be pilot schemes so that we can make an assessment. We believe that they have a place. What is especially compelling is that the young people who have been involved in pilot schemes south of the border testified to the effect that they would have preferred that option to being sent into custody. That is a consideration that hon. Members should bear in mind when drawing their conclusion tonight.
|Division No. 58]||[5.19 pm|
|Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey)||Browning, Mrs Angela|
|Aitken, Jonathan||Bruce, Ian (S Dorset)|
|Alexander, Richard||Budgen, Nicholas|
|Alison, Michael (Selby)||Burns, Simon|
|Allason, Rupert (Torbay)||Burt, Alistair|
|Amess, David||Butcher, John|
|Ancram, Michael||Butler, Peter|
|Arbuthnot, James||Butterfill, John|
|Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham)||Carlisle, John (Luton N)|
|Ashby, David||Carlisle, Sir Kenneth (Linc'n)|
|Atkins, Robert||Carrington, Matthew|
|Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)||Carttiss, Michael|
|Baker, Kenneth (Mole V)||Cash, William|
|Baldry, Tony||Chapman, Sir Sydney|
|Banks, Matthew (Southport)||Churchill, Mr|
|Banks, Robert (Harrogate)||Clappison, James|
|Bates, Michael||Clark, Dr Michael (Rochf'd)|
|Batiste, Spencer||Clarke, Kenneth (Rushcliffe)|
|Bellingham, Henry||Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey|
|Bendall, Vivian||Coe, Sebastian|
|Beresford, Sir Paul||Colvin, Michael|
|Biffen, John||Congdon, David|
|Body, Sir Richard||Conway, Derek|
|Bonsor, Sir Nicholas||Coombs, Simon (Swindon)|
|Booth, Hartley||Cope, Sir John|
|Boswell, Tim||Cormack, Sir Patrick|
|Bottomley, Peter (Eltham)||Couchman, James|
|Bottomley, Mrs Virginia||Cran, James|
|Bowden, Sir Andrew||Curry, David|
|Bowis, John||Davies, Quentin (Stamf'd)|
|Boyson, Sir Rhodes||Davis, David (Boothferry)|
|Brandreth, Gyles||Day, Stephen|
|Brazier, Julian||Deva, Nirj Joseph|
|Bright, Sir Graham||Devlin, Tim|
|Brooke, Peter||Dorrell, Stephen|
|Brown, Michael (Brigg Cl'thorpes)||Douglas-Hamilton, Lord James|
|Dover, Den||Key, Robert|
|Duncan, Alan||King, Tom|
|Duncan Smith, Iain||Kirkhope, Timothy|
|Dunn, Bob||Knapman, Roger|
|Dykes, Hugh||Knight, Mrs Angela (Erewash)|
|Eggar, Tim||Knight, Greg (Derby N)|
|Elletson, Harold||Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston)|
|Emery, Sir Peter||Knox, Sir David|
|Evans, David (Welwyn Hatf'ld)||Kynoch, George|
|Evans, Jonathan (Brecon)||Lamont Norman|
|Evans, Roger (Monmouth)||Lang, Ian|
|Evennett, David||Lawrence, Sir Ivan|
|Faber, David||Legg, Barry|
|Fabricant, Michael||Leigh, Edward|
|Fenner, Dame Peggy||Lennox-Boyd, Sir Mark|
|Field, Barry (Isle of Wight)||Lester, Sir Jim (Broxtowe)|
|Fishburn, Dudley||Lidington, David|
|Forman, Nigel||Lilley, Peter|
|Forsyth, Michael (Stirling)||Lord, Michael|
|Forth, Eric||Loyden, Eddie|
|Fowler, Sir Norman||Luff, Peter|
|Fox, Dr Liam (Woodspring)||Lyell, Sir Nicholas|
|Fox, Sir Marcus (Shipley)||MacGregor, John|
|Freeman, Roger||MacKay, Andrew|
|French, Douglas||Maclean, David|
|Fry, Sir Peter||McLoughlin, Patrick|
|Gale, Roger||McNair-Wilson, Sir Patrick|
|Gallie, Phil||Madel, Sir David|
|Gardiner, Sir George||Maitland, Lady Olga|
|Garel-Jones, Tristan||Major, John|
|Garnier, Edward||Malone, Gerald|
|Gill, Christopher||Mans, Keith|
|Gillan, Mrs Cheryl||Marland, Paul|
|Goodlad, Alastair||Marlow, Tony|
|Goodson-Wickes, Dr Charles||Marshall, John (Hendon S)|
|Gorman, Mrs Teresa||Marshall, Sir Michael (Arundel)|
|Gorst, Sir John||Martin, David (Portsmouth S)|
|Grant, Sir Anthony (SW Cambs)||Mates, Michael|
|Greenway, Harry (Ealing N)||Mawhinney, Dr Brian|
|Greenway, John (Ryedale)||Mayhew, Sir Patrick|
|Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth N)||Mellor, David|
|Gummer, John||Merchant, Piers|
|Hague, William||Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling)|
|Hamilton, Sir Archibald||Mitchell, Sir David (NW Hants)|
|Hamilton, Neil (Tatton)||Moate, Sir Roger|
|Hampson, Dr Keith||Monro, Sir Hector|
|Hannam, Sir John||Montgomery, Sir Fergus|
|Hargreaves, Andrew||Nelson, Anthony|
|Harris, David||Neubert, Sir Michael|
|Haselhurst, Sir Alan||Newton, Tony|
|Hawkins, Nick||Nicholls, Patrick|
|Hawksley, Warren||Nicholson, David (Taunton)|
|Hayes, Jerry||Norris, Steve|
|Heald, Oliver||Onslow, Sir Cranley|
|Heath, Sir Edward||Oppenheim, Phillip|
|Heathcoat-Amory, David||Ottaway, Richard|
|Hendry, Charles||Page, Richard|
|Heseltine, Michael||Paice, James|
|Higgins, Sir Terence||Patnick, Sir Irvine|
|Hill, Sir James (Southampton Test)||Patten, John|
|Hogg, Douglas (Grantham)||Pattie, Sir Geoffrey|
|Horam, John||Pawsey, James|
|Hordern, Sir Peter||Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth|
|Howell, Sir Ralph (N Norfolk)||Pickles, Eric|
|Hughes, Robert G (Harrow W)||Porter, David|
|Hunt, David (Wirral W)||Portillo, Michael|
|Hunt, Sir John (Ravensb'ne)||Powel, William (Corby)|
|Hunter, Andrew||Rathbone, Tim|
|Hurd, Douglas||Redwood, John|
|Jack, Michael||Richards, Rod|
|Jackson, Robert (Wantage)||Riddick, Graham|
|Jenkin, Bernard (Colchester N)||Robathan, Andrew|
|Jessel, Toby||Roberts, Sir Wyn|
|Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)||Robertson, Raymond S (Ab'dn S)|
|Jones, Robert B (W Herts)||Robinson, Mark (Somerton)|
|Kellett-Bowman, Dame Elaine||Roe, Mrs Marion|
|Ross, William (E Lond'y)||Taylor, Sir Teddy|
|Rowe, Andrew||Temple-Morris, Peter|
|Rumbold, Dame Angela||Thompson, Sir Donald (Calder V)|
|Ryder, Richard||Thompson, Patrick (Norwich N)|
|Sackville, Tom||Thornton, Sir Malcolm|
|Sainsbury, Sir Timothy||Townend, John (Bridlington)|
|Scott, Sir Nicholas||Townsend, Sir Cyril (Bexl'yh'th)|
|Shaw, David (Dover)||Tracey, Richard|
|Shaw, Sir Giles (Pudsey)||Tredinnick, David|
|Shephard, Mrs Gillian||Trend, Michael|
|Shepherd, Sir Colin (Heref'd)||Trimble, David|
|Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge)||Trotter, Neville|
|Shersby, Sir Michael||Twinn, Dr Ian|
|Sims, Sir Roger||Vaughan, Sir Gerard|
|Skeet, Sir Trevor||Viggers, Peter|
|Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)||Waldegrave, William|
|Smith, Tim (Beaconsf'ld)||Walden, George|
|Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S)||Walker, Bill (N Tayside)|
|Soames, Nicholas||Waller, Gary|
|Speed, Sir Keith||Ward, John|
|Spencer, Sir Derek||Wardle, Charles (Bexhill)|
|Spicer, Sir Jim (W Dorset)||Waterson, Nigel|
|Spicer, Sir Michael (S Worcs)||Watts, John|
|Spink, Dr Robert||Wheeler, Sir John|
|Spring, Richard||Whitney, Sir Raymond|
|Sproat, Iain||Whittingdale, John|
|Squire, Robin (Hornchurch)||Widdecombe, Miss Ann|
|Stanley, Sir John||Wiggin, Sir Jerry|
|Steen, Anthony||Wilkinson, John|
|Stephen, Michael||Willetts, David|
|Stern, Michael||Wilshire, David|
|Stewart, Allan||Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesf'ld)|
|Streeter, Gary||Wolfson, Mark|
|Sumberg, David||Wood, Timothy|
|Sweeney, Walter||Yeo, Tim|
|Sykes, John||Young, Sir George|
|Tapsell, Sir Peter|
|Taylor, Ian (Esher)||Tellers for the Ayes:|
|Taylor, John D (Strangf'd)||Mr. Anthony Coombs and|
|Taylor, John M (Solihull)||Mrs. Jacqui Lait.|
|Abbott, Ms Diane||Brown, Nicholas (Newcastle E)|
|Adams, Mrs Irene||Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)|
|Ainger, Nick||Burden, Richard|
|Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE)||Byers, Stephen|
|Allen, Graham||Caborn, Richard|
|Alton, David||Callaghan, Jim|
|Anderson, Donald (Swansea E)||Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)|
|Anderson, Ms Janet (Ros'dale)||Campbell, Menzies (Fife NE)|
|Armstrong, Ms Hilary||Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V)|
|Ashdown, Paddy||Campbell-Savours, D N|
|Ashton, Joseph||Canavan, Dennis|
|Austin-Walker, John||Cann, Jamie|
|Banks, Tony (Newham NW)||Carlile, Alex (Montgomery)|
|Barnes, Harry||Chisholm, Malcolm|
|Barron, Kevin||Church, Ms Judith|
|Battle, John||Clapham, Michael|
|Bayley, Hugh||Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)|
|Beckett, Mrs Margaret||Clarke, Tom (Monklands W)|
|Beggs, Roy||Clelland, David|
|Beith, A J||Clwyd, Mrs Ann|
|Bell, Stuart||Coffey, Ms Ann|
|Benn, Tony||Cohen, Harry|
|Bennett, Andrew F||Connarty, Michael|
|Benton, Joe||Cook, Robin (Livingston)|
|Bermingham, Gerald||Corbett, Robin|
|Berry, Roger||Corbyn, Jeremy|
|Betts, Clive||Corston, Ms Jean|
|Blair, Tony||Cousins, Jim|
|Boateng, Paul||Cox, Tom|
|Boyes, Roland||Cunliffe, Lawrence|
|Bradley, Keith||Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try SE)|
|Bray, Dr Jeremy||Cunningham, Dr John|
|Brown, Gordon (Dunfermline E)||Cunningham, Ms R (Perth Kinross)|
|Dafis, Cynog||Jackson, Mrs Helen (Hillsborough)|
|Dalyell, Tam||Jamieson, David|
|Darling, Alistair||Janner, Greville|
|Davidson, Ian||Jenkins, Brian D (SE Staffs)|
|Davies, Bryan (Oldham C)||Jones, Barry (Alyn & D'side)|
|Davies, Denzil (Llanelli)||Jones, Ieuan Wyn (Ynys Môn)|
|Davies, Ron (Caerphilly)||Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)|
|Davis, Terry (B'ham Hodge H)||Jones, Dr L (B'ham Selly Oak)|
|Denham, John||Jones, Martyn (Clwyd SW)|
|Dewar, Donald||Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)|
|Dixon, Don||Jowell, Ms Tessa|
|Dobson, Frank||Kaufman, Gerald|
|Donohoe, Brian H||Keen, Alan|
|Dowd, Jim||Kennedy, Charles (Ross C & S)|
|Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth||Kennedy, Mrs Jane (Broadgreen)|
|Eagle, Ms Angela||Khabra, Piara S|
|Eastham, Ken||Kilfoyle, Peter|
|Ennis, Jeff||Lestor, Miss Joan (Eccles)|
|Etherington, Bill||Lewis, Terry|
|Evans, John (St Helens N)||Liddell, Mrs Helen|
|Ewing, Mrs Margaret||Litherland, Robert|
|Fatchett, Derek||Livingstone, Ken|
|Faulds, Andrew||Lloyd, Tony (Stretf'd)|
|Field, Frank (Birkenhead)||Llwyd, Elfyn|
|Fisher, Mark||Loyden, Eddie|
|Forsythe, Clifford (S Antrim)||McAllion, John|
|Foster, Derek||McAvoy, Thomas|
|Foster, Don (Bath)||McCartney, Ian (Makerf'ld)|
|Foulkes, George||McCartney, Robert (N Down)|
|Fraser, John||Macdonald, Calum|
|Fyfe, Mrs Maria||McFall, John|
|Galbraith, Sam||McGrady, Eddie|
|Galloway, George||McKelvey, William|
|Gapes, Mike||Mackinlay, Andrew|
|Garrett, John||McLeish, Henry|
|George, Bruce||Maclennan, Robert|
|Gilbert, Dr John||McMaster, Gordon|
|Godman, Dr Norman A||McNamara, Kevin|
|Godsiff, Roger||MacShane, Denis|
|Golding, Mrs Llin||McWilliam, John|
|Gordon, Ms Mildred||Madden, Max|
|Graham, Thomas||Maddock, Mrs Diana|
|Grant, Bernie (Tottenham)||Mahon, Mrs Alice|
|Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)||Mandelson, Peter|
|Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)||Marek, Dr John|
|Grocott, Bruce||Marshall, David (Shettleston)|
|Gunnell, John||Marshall, Jim (Leicester S)|
|Hain, Peter||Martlew, Eric|
|Hall, Mike||Maxton, John|
|Hanson, David||Meacher, Michael|
|Hardy, Peter||Meale, Alan|
|Harman, Ms Harriet||Michael, Alun|
|Harvey, Nick||Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)|
|Hattersley, Roy||Milburn, Alan|
|Henderson, Doug||Miller, Andrew|
|Heppell, John||Mitchell, Austin (Gt Grimsby)|
|Hill, Keith (Streatham)||Moonie, Dr Lewis|
|Hinchliffe, David||Morgan, Rhodri|
|Hodge, Ms Margaret||Morley, Elliot|
|Hoey, Kate||Morris, Alfred (Wy'nshawe)|
|Hogg, Norman (Cumbernauld)||Morris, Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)|
|Home Robertson, John||Morris, John (Aberavon)|
|Hood, Jimmy||Mowlam, Ms Marjorie|
|Hoon, Geoffrey||Mudie, George|
|Howarth, Alan (Stratf'd-on-A)||Mullin, Chris|
|Howarth, George (Knowsley N)||Murphy, Paul|
|Howells, Dr Kim||Nicholson, Miss Emma (W Devon)|
|Hoyle, Doug||Oakes, Gordon|
|Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)||O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)|
|Hughes, Robert (Ab'd'n N)||O'Brien, William (Normanton)|
|Hughes, Roy (Newport E)||O'Hara, Edward|
|Hughes, Simon (Southwark)||O'Neill, Martin|
|Hutton, John||Orme, Stanley|
|Illsley, Eric||Parry, Robert|
|Ingram, Adam||Pearson, Ian|
|Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampst'd)||Pendry, Tom|
|Pickthall, Colin||Steel, Sir David|
|Pike, Peter L||Steinberg, Gerry|
|Pope, Greg||Stevenson, George|
|Powell, Sir Raymond (Ogmore)||Stott, Roger|
|Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)||Strang, Dr Gavin|
|Prescott, John||Straw, Jack|
|Primarolo, Ms Dawn||Sutcliffe, Gerry|
|Purchase, Ken||Taylor, Mrs Ann (Dewsbury)|
|Quin, Ms Joyce||Taylor, Matthew (Truro)|
|Radice, Giles||Thompson, Jack (Wansbeck)|
|Randall, Stuart||Thurnham, Peter|
|Raynsford, Nick||Timms, Stephen|
|Reid, Dr John||Tipping, Paddy|
|Rendel, David||Touhig, Don|
|Robertson, George (Hamilton)||Trickett, Jon|
|Robinson, Peter (Belfast E)||Turner, Dennis|
|Roche, Mrs Barbara||Tyler, Paul|
|Rogers, Allan||Walker, Sir Harold|
|Rooker, Jeff||Wallace, James|
|Rooney, Terry||Walley, Ms Joan|
|Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)||Wardell, Gareth (Gower)|
|Rowlands, Ted||Wareing, Robert N|
|Ruddock, Ms Joan||Watson, Mike|
|Salmond, Alex||Welsh, Andrew|
|Sedgemore, Brian||Wicks, Malcolm|
|Sheerman, Barry||Wigley, Dafydd|
|Sheldon, Robert||Williams, Alan (Swansea W)|
|Shore, Peter||Williams, Alan W (Carmarthen)|
|Short, Clare||Wilson, Brian|
|Skinner, Dennis||Winnick, David|
|Smith, Andrew (Oxford E)||Wise, Mrs Audrey|
|Smith, Chris (Islington S)||Worthington, Tony|
|Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)||Wray, Jimmy|
|Snape, Peter||Wright, Dr Tony|
|Spearing, Nigel||Tellers for the Noes:|
|Spellar, John||Mr. John Cummings and|
|Squire, Ms R (Dunfermline W)||Mrs. Bridget Prentice.|
|Division No. 59]||[5.34 pm|
|Abbott, Ms Diane||Blair, Tony|
|Adams, Mrs Irene||Boateng, Paul|
|Ainger, Nick||Boyes, Roland|
|Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE)||Bradley, Keith|
|Allen, Graham||Bray, Dr Jeremy|
|Alton, David||Brown, Gordon (Dunfermline E)|
|Anderson, Donald (Swansea E)||Brown, Nicholas (Newcastle E)|
|Anderson, Ms Janet (Ros'dale)||Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)|
|Armstrong, Ms Hilary||Burden, Richard|
|Ashdown, Paddy||Byers, Stephen|
|Austin-Walker, John||Caborn, Richard|
|Banks, Tony (Newham NW)||Callaghan, Jim|
|Barnes, Harry||Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)|
|Barron, Kevin||Campbell, Menzies (Fife NE)|
|Battle, John||Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V)|
|Bayley, Hugh||Campbell-Savours, D N|
|Beckett, Mrs Margaret||Canavan, Dennis|
|Beith, A J||Cann, Jamie|
|Bell, Stuart||Carlile, Alex (Montgomery)|
|Benn, Tony||Chisholm, Malcolm|
|Bennett, Andrew F||Church, Ms Judith|
|Benton, Joe||Clapham, Michael|
|Bermingham, Gerald||Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)|
|Berry, Roger||Clarke, Tom (Monklands W)|
|Clelland, David||Home Robertson, John|
|Clwyd, Mrs Ann||Hood, Jimmy|
|Coffey, Ms Ann||Hoon, Geoffrey|
|Cohen, Harry||Howarth, Alan (Stratf'd-on-A)|
|Connarty, Michael||Howarth, George (Knowsley N)|
|Cook, Robin (Livingston)||Howells, Dr Kim|
|Corbett, Robin||Hoyle, Doug|
|Corbyn, Jeremy||Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)|
|Corston, Ms Jean||Hughes, Robert (Ab'd'n N)|
|Cousins, Jim||Hughes, Roy (Newport E)|
|Cox, Tom||Hughes, Simon (Southwark)|
|Cunliffe, Lawrence||Hutton, John|
|Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try SE)||Illsley, Eric|
|Cunningham, Dr John||Ingram, Adam|
|Cunningham, Ms R (Perth Kinross)||Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampst'd)|
|Dafis, Cynog||Jackson, Mrs Helen (Hillsborough)|
|Dalyell, Tam||Jamieson, David|
|Darling, Alistair||Janner, Greville|
|Davidson, Ian||Jenkins, Brian D (SE Staffs)|
|Davies, Bryan (Oldham C)||Jones, Barry (Alyn & D'side)|
|Davies, Denzil (Llanelli)||Jones, Ieuan Wyn (Ynys Môn)|
|Davies, Ron (Caerphilly)||Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)|
|Davis, Terry (B'ham Hodge H)||Jones, Dr L (B'ham Selly Oak)|
|Denham, John||Jones, Martyn (Clwyd SW)|
|Dewar, Donald||Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)|
|Dixon, Don||Jowell, Ms Tessa|
|Dobson, Frank||Kaufman, Gerald|
|Donohoe, Brian H||Kennedy, Charles (Ross C & S)|
|Dowd, Jim||Kennedy, Mrs Jane (Broadgreen)|
|Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth||Khabra, Piara S|
|Eagle, Ms Angela||Kilfoyle, Peter|
|Eastham, Ken||Lestor, Miss Joan (Eccles)|
|Ennis, Jeff||Lewis, Terry|
|Etherington, Bill||Liddell, Mrs Helen|
|Evans, John (St Helens N)||Litherland, Robert|
|Ewing, Mrs Margaret||Livingstone, Ken|
|Fatchett, Derek||Lloyd, Tony (Stretf'd)|
|Faulds, Andrew||Llwyd, Elfyn|
|Field, Frank (Birkenhead)||Loyden, Eddie|
|Fisher, Mark||McAllion, John|
|Forsythe, Clifford (S Antrim)||McAvoy, Thomas|
|Foster, Derek||McCartney, Robert (N Down)|
|Foster, Don (Bath)||Macdonald, Calum|
|Foulkes, George||McFall, John|
|Fraser, John||McGrady, Eddie|
|Fyfe, Mrs Maria||McKelvey, William|
|Galbraith, Sam||Mackinlay, Andrew|
|Galloway, George||McLeish, Henry|
|Gapes, Mike||Maclennan, Robert|
|Garrett, John||McMaster, Gordon|
|George, Bruce||McNamara, Kevin|
|Gilbert, Dr John||MacShane, Denis|
|Godman, Dr Norman A||McWilliam, John|
|Godsiff, Roger||Madden, Max|
|Golding, Mrs Llin||Maddock, Mrs Diana|
|Gordon, Ms Mildred||Mahon, Mrs Alice|
|Graham, Thomas||Mandelson, Peter|
|Grant, Bernie (Tottenham)||Marek, Dr John|
|Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)||Marshall, David (Shettleston)|
|Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)||Marshall, Jim (Leicester S)|
|Grocott, Bruce||Martlew, Eric|
|Gunnell, John||Maxton, John|
|Hain, Peter||Meacher, Michael|
|Hall, Mike||Meale, Alan|
|Hanson, David||Michael, Alun|
|Hardy, Peter||Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)|
|Harman, Ms Harriet||Milburn, Alan|
|Harvey, Nick||Miller, Andrew|
|Hattersley, Roy||Mitchell, Austin (Gt Grimsby)|
|Henderson, Doug||Moonie, Dr Lewis|
|Heppell, John||Morgan, Rhodri|
|Hill, Keith (Streatham)||Morley, Elliot|
|Hinchliffe, David||Morris, Alfred (Wy'nshawe)|
|Hodge, Ms Margaret||Morris, Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)|
|Hoey, Kate||Morris, John (Aberavon)|
|Hogg, Norman (Cumbernauld)||Mowlam, Ms Marjorie|
|Mudie, George||Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)|
|Mullin, Chris||Soley, Clive|
|Murphy, Paul||Spearing, Nigel|
|Nicholson, Miss Emma (W Devon)||Spellar, John|
|O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)||Squire, Ms R (Dunfermline W)|
|O'Brien, William (Normanton)||Steel, Sir David|
|O'Hara, Edward||Steinberg, Gerry|
|O'Neill, Martin||Stevenson, George|
|Orme, Stanley||Stott, Roger|
|Parry, Robert||Strang, Dr Gavin|
|Pearson, Ian||Straw, Jack|
|Pendry, Tom||Sutcliffe, Gerry|
|Pickthall, Colin||Taylor, Mrs Ann (Dewsbury)|
|Pike, Peter L||Taylor, Matthew (Truro)|
|Pope, Greg||Thompson, Jack (Wansbeck)|
|Powell, Sir Raymond (Ogmore)||Thurnham, Peter|
|Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)||Timms, Stephen|
|Prescott, John||Tipping, Paddy|
|Primarolo, Ms Dawn||Touhig, Don|
|Purchase, Ken||Trickett, Jon|
|Quin, Ms Joyce||Turner, Dennis|
|Radice, Giles||Tyler, Paul|
|Randall, Stuart||Vaz, Keith|
|Raynsford, Nick||Walker, Sir Harold|
|Reid, Dr John||Wallace, James|
|Rendel, David||Walley, Ms Joan|
|Robertson, George (Hamilton)||Wardell, Gareth (Gower)|
|Robinson, Peter (Belfast E)||Wareing, Robert N|
|Roche, Mrs Barbara||Watson, Mike|
|Rogers, Allan||Welsh, Andrew|
|Rooker, Jeff||Wicks, Malcolm|
|Rooney, Terry||Wigley, Dafydd|
|Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)||Williams, Alan (Swansea W)|
|Rowlands, Ted||Williams, Alan W (Carmarthen)|
|Ruddock, Ms Joan||Wilson, Brian|
|Salmond, Alex||Winnick, David|
|Sedgemore, Brian||Wise, Mrs Audrey|
|Sheerman, Barry||Worthington, Tony|
|Sheldon, Robert||Wray, Jimmy|
|Shore, Peter||Wright, Dr Tony|
|Skinner, Dennis||Tellers for the Ayes:|
|Smith, Andrew (Oxford E)||Mr. John Cummings and|
|Smith, Chris (Islington S)||Mrs. Bridget Prentice.|
|Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey)||Boyson, Sir Rhodes|
|Aitken, Jonathan||Brandreth, Gyles|
|Alexander, Richard||Brazier, Julian|
|Alison, Michael (Selby)||Bright, Sir Graham|
|Allason, Rupert (Torbay)||Brooke, Peter|
|Amess, David||Brown, Michael (Brigg Cl'thorpes)|
|Ancram, Michael||Browning, Mrs Angela|
|Arbuthnot, James||Bruce, Ian (S Dorset)|
|Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham)||Budgen, Nicholas|
|Ashby, David||Burns, Simon|
|Atkins, Robert||Burt, Alistair|
|Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)||Butcher, John|
|Baker, Kenneth (Mole V)||Butler, Peter|
|Baldry, Tony||Butterfill, John|
|Banks, Matthew (Southport)||Carlisle, John (Luton N)|
|Banks, Robert (Harrogate)||Carlisle, Sir Kenneth (Linc'n)|
|Bates, Michael||Carrington, Matthew|
|Batiste, Spencer||Carttiss, Michael|
|Bellingham, Henry||Cash, William|
|Bendall, Vivian||Chapman, Sir Sydney|
|Beresford, Sir Paul||Churchill, Mr|
|Biffen, John||Clappison, James|
|Body, Sir Richard||Clark, Dr Michael (Rochf'd)|
|Bonsor, Sir Nicholas||Clarke, Kenneth (Rushcliffe)|
|Booth, Hartley||Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey|
|Boswell, Tim||Coe, Sebastian|
|Bottomley, Peter (Eltham)||Colvin, Michael|
|Bottomley, Mrs Virginia||Congdon, David|
|Bowden, Sir Andrew||Conway, Derek|
|Bowis, John||Coombs, Simon (Swindon)|
|Cope, Sir John||Hughes, Robert G (Harrow W)|
|Cormack, Sir Patrick||Hunt, David (Wirral W)|
|Couchman, James||Hunt, Sir John (Ravensb'ne)|
|Cran, James||Hunter, Andrew|
|Curry, David||Jack, Michael|
|Davies, Quentin (Stamf'd)||Jackson, Robert (Wantage)|
|Davis, David (Boothferry)||Jenkin, Bernard (Colchester N)|
|Day, Stephen||Jessel, Toby|
|Deva, Nirj Joseph||Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)|
|Devlin, Tim||Jones, Robert B (W Herts)|
|Dorrell, Stephen||Kellett-Bowman, Dame Elaine|
|Douglas-Hamilton, Lord James||Key, Robert|
|Dover, Den||King, Tom|
|Duncan, Alan||Kirkhope, Timothy|
|Duncan Smith, Iain||Knapman, Roger|
|Dunn, Bob||Knight, Mrs Angela (Erewash)|
|Dykes, Hugh||Knight, Greg (Derby N)|
|Eggar, Tim||Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston)|
|Elletson, Harold||Knox, Sir David|
|Emery, Sir Peter||Kynoch, George|
|Evans, David (Welwyn Hatf'ld)||Lamont, Norman|
|Evans, Jonathan (Brecon)||Lang, Ian|
|Evans, Roger (Monmouth)||Lawrence, Sir Ivan|
|Evennett, David||Legg, Barry|
|Faber, David||Leigh, Edward|
|Fabricant, Michael||Lennox-Boyd, Sir Mark|
|Fenner, Dame Peggy||Lester, Sir Jim (Broxtowe)|
|Field, Barry (Isle of Wight)||Lidington, David|
|Fishburn, Dudley||Lilley, Peter|
|Forman, Nigel||Lloyd, Sir Peter (Fareham)|
|Forsyth, Michael (Stirling)||Lord, Michael|
|Forth, Eric||Luff, Peter|
|Fowler, Sir Norman||Lyell, Sir Nicholas|
|Fox, Dr Liam (Woodspring)||MacGregor, John|
|Fox, Sir Marcus (Shipley)||MacKay, Andrew|
|Freeman, Roger||Maclean, David|
|French, Douglas||McLoughlin, Patrick|
|Fry, Sir Peter||McNair-Wilson, Sir Patrick|
|Gale, Roger||Madel, Sir David|
|Gallie, Phil||Maitland, Lady Olga|
|Gardiner, Sir George||Major, John|
|Garel-Jones, Tristan||Malone, Gerald|
|Garnier, Edward||Mans, Keith|
|Gill, Christopher||Marland, Paul|
|Gillan, Mrs Cheryl||Marlow, Tony|
|Goodlad, Alastair||Marshall, John (Hendon S)|
|Goodson-Wickes, Dr Charles||Marshall, Sir Michael (Arundel)|
|Gorman, Mrs Teresa||Martin, David (Portsmouth S)|
|Gorst, Sir John||Mates, Michael|
|Grant, Sir Anthony (SW Cambs)||Mawhinney, Dr Brian|
|Greenway, Harry (Ealing N)||Mayhew, Sir Patrick|
|Greenway, John (Ryedale)||Mellor, David|
|Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth N)||Merchant, Piers|
|Gummer, John||Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling)|
|Hague, William||Mitchell, Sir David (NW Hants)|
|Hamilton, Sir Archibald||Moate, Sir Roger|
|Hamilton, Neil (Tatton)||Monro, Sir Hector|
|Hampson, Dr Keith||Montgomery, Sir Fergus|
|Hannam, Sir John||Nelson, Anthony|
|Hargreaves, Andrew||Neubert, Sir Michael|
|Harris, David||Newton, Tony|
|Haselhurst, Sir Alan||Nicholls, Patrick|
|Hawkins, Nick||Nicholson, David (Taunton)|
|Hawksley, Warren||Norris, Steve|
|Hayes, Jerry||Onslow, Sir Cranley|
|Heald, Oliver||Oppenheim, Phillip|
|Heath, Sir Edward||Ottaway, Richard|
|Heathcoat-Amory, David||Page, Richard|
|Hendry, Charles||Paice, James|
|Heseltine, Michael||Patnick, Sir Irvine|
|Higgins, Sir Terence||Patten, John|
|Hill, Sir James (Southampton Test)||Pattie, Sir Geoffrey|
|Hogg, Douglas (Grantham)||Pawsey, James|
|Horam, John||Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth|
|Hordern, Sir Peter||Pickles, Eric|
|Howell, Sir Ralph (N Norfolk)||Porter, David|
|Portillo, Michael||Sykes, John|
|Powell, William (Corby)||Tapsell, Sir Peter|
|Rathbone, Tim||Taylor, Ian (Esher)|
|Redwood, John||Taylor, John M (Solihull)|
|Richards, Rod||Taylor, Sir Teddy|
|Riddick, Graham||Temple-Morris, Peter|
|Robathan, Andrew||Thompson, Sir Donald (Calder V)|
|Roberts, Sir Wyn||Thompson, Patrick (Norwich N)|
|Robertson, Raymond S (Ab'd'n S)||Thornton, Sir Malcolm|
|Robinson, Mark (Somerton)||Townend, John (Bridlington)|
|Roe, Mrs Marion||Townsend, Sir Cyril (Bexl'yh'th)|
|Rowe, Andrew||Tracey, Richard|
|Rumbold, Dame Angela||Tredinnick, David|
|Ryder, Richard||Trend, Michael|
|Sackville, Tom||Trotter, Neville|
|Sainsbury, Sir Timothy||Twinn, Dr Ian|
|Scott, Sir Nicholas||Vaughan, Sir Gerard|
|Shaw, David (Dover)||Viggers, Peter|
|Shaw, Sir Giles (Pudsey)||Waldegrave, William|
|Shephard, Mrs Gillian||Walden, George|
|Shepherd, Sir Colin (Heref'd)||Walker, Bill (N Tayside)|
|Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge)||Waller, Gary|
|Shersby, Sir Michael||Ward, John|
|Sims, Sir Roger||Wardle, Charles (Bexhill)|
|Skeet, Sir Trevor||Waterson, Nigel|
|Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)||Watts, John|
|Smith, Tim (Beaconsf'ld)||Wells, Bowen|
|Soames, Nicholas||Wheeler, Sir John|
|Speed, Sir Keith||Whitney, Sir Raymond|
|Spencer, Sir Derek||Whittingdale, John|
|Spicer, Sir Jim (W Dorset)||Widdecombe, Miss Ann|
|Spicer, Sir Michael (S Worcs)||Wiggin, Sir Jerry|
|Spink, Dr Robert||Wilkinson, John|
|Spring, Richard||Willetts, David|
|Sproat, Iain||Wilshire, David|
|Squire, Robin (Hornchurch)||Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesf'ld)|
|Stanley, Sir John||Wolfson, Mark|
|Steen, Anthony||Wood, Timothy|
|Stephen, Michael||Yeo, Tim|
|Stern, Michael||Young, Sir George|
|Streeter, Gary||Tellers for the Noes:|
|Sumberg, David||Mr. Anthony Coombs and|
|Sweeney, Walter||Mrs. Jacqui Lait.|
With this, it will be convenient to discuss the following amendments: No. 151, in page 7, line 2, after 'shall', insert
'ascertain from the offender
No. 221, in page 7, line 47, at end insert—
'(9A) No regulations under subsection (9) above shall be made after the first regulations have been made under that subsection until the Secretary of State shall have laid before both Houses of Parliament a statement assessing the effectiveness of the first regulations made under that subsection.'.
I shall speak to amendments Nos. 220 to 222, which my hon. Friend the Member for Moray (Mrs. Ewing) and I tabled.
The amendments, of which amendment No. 221 is the main one, relate to the Government's proposed pilot project for electronic tagging. The purpose of amendment No. 221 is to bring the results of the pilot project back to Parliament for a full debate before we consider whether it should be extended to the whole of Scotland.
Although the explanatory and financial memorandum to the original draft of the Bill noted that the Government intended to set up a pilot project for restriction of liberty orders—or, as we have called it, electronic tagging—there is no mention of the pilot in the Bill. Instead, the legislation overrides the need to evaluate the feasibility of the disposal, and empowers the Government to extend the restriction of liberty orders nationwide and to change the nature of the disposal, without the requirement to seek the approval of Parliament in subsequent legislation. Any subsequent regulations will be made by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament. That is a negative resolution procedure that does not permit debate on the Floor of the House.
There are several general concerns about electronic monitoring of offenders—a number were raised in a previous debate on the tagging of those under age 16—and those objections strengthen the case for proper parliamentary scrutiny and evaluation of the pilot project before the disposal is extended across Scotland. The case is also strengthened by the Government's concession to the legal profession over the pilot project that will establish a public defender system.
In spite of comparative examples that have led the Government to believe that a public defender system could work in Scotland, they have decided to restrict the legislation's provisions to a limited pilot study which, after three years, will have to come before Parliament to be either withdrawn or renewed or extended by primary legislation. If that is deemed correct for the proposed public defender project—it clearly is—I contend that the electronic tagging provisions, which are untried and untested in a Scottish context, merit similar scrutiny and evaluation by Parliament. I do not see why there should be one rule in respect of the public defender system and another in respect of electronic tagging.
Reference has been made to trials in England, which commenced in June 1995 and will continue until March 1997. They are monitored by Securicor in Manchester and Reading and by Geographix in Norfolk. I listened with interest to the earlier comments of the hon. Member for Dumbarton (Mr. McFall) about Securicor and the value that it perceives in the electronic tagging concept I suspect that the only value Securicor is interested in is the "loads of dosh" value from which it and other private companies will benefit. That is a grave concern for many Opposition Members.
After the first full year of trials, the average cost was estimated at £14,000 per offender. That compares with an average cost of £2,500 per probation order. The trials in England have also demonstrated that the tag can have a stigmatising effect for the wearer. In November 1995, Richard McGuiness was reported to have removed his tag after being assaulted when he was allegedly mistaken for the only other person to be tagged in Reading—a sex offender whose case had been well documented in the local media.
It is interesting to note that there were only two taggings in the whole of Reading. The Government gave the impression that many people would be running around with electronic tags but, in reality, tags are used in only a limited number of cases. Participants also noted that it was difficult to find employment while being monitored, partly because of the longer curfew hours for unemployed accused and partly because of the stigma associated with the anklet.
Tagging is no substitute for projects that concentrate on the offender's behaviour. Concerns were expressed in Committee about the impact of electronic tagging on the offender and on his or her family. It was felt that, in some cases, family members who have to cope with a difficult offender will be punished although they have committed no crime. During the fourth sitting of the Committee, the Minister promised that
if any difficulties"—
with regard to family members—
arise, they will be taken fully into account before extending such schemes more widely".
However, it is uncertain how we will develop a clear picture of any difficulties without the involvement of social workers or probation officers. In the clause stand part debate in Committee, the Minister said:
The Bill's provision will permit restriction of liberty orders to be introduced in Scotland on a pilot basis. Even those … who have doubts about the proposal's effectiveness cannot object to it being tried out in practice to establish whether it has a useful role to play."—[Official Report. First Scottish Standing Committee. 19 November 1996: c. 152. 172.]
Given the concerns and the uncertainty surrounding the disposal, the Government would surely not object to Parliament's debating fully the results of the pilot study so that Parliament could determine whether it can play a useful role. Why is the Minister's approach to electronic monitoring different from his approach to the public defender project, the results of which must be reported to Parliament? I shall press amendment No. 221 to a vote at a later stage.
The remarks of the hon. Member for Perth and Kinross (Ms Cunningham) make a lot of sense. The Minister offered to answer any questions that hon. Members may have concerning the Government amendments, but I have a query about the hon. Lady's amendments. What group of people would carry out the evaluation of the pilot study? Would Scottish Office officials perform that function or would the Scottish Office commission independent analysts to evaluate the trials?
I refer the Minister to Government amendment No. 251—if I can catch his ear, as he is blethering away—which mentions district courts. Would that include the district court in Greenock? I do not want a pilot study or trial to be carried out in my constituency as I genuinely believe that, as my hon. Friends the Members for Dundee, East (Mr. McAllion) and for Paisley, North (Mrs. Adams) said, severely deprived youngsters from council schemes would be singled out. Where does Greenock district court stand in relation to amendment No. 251?
I commend the hon. Member for Perth and Kinross (Ms Cunningham) for introducing amendment No. 221, which we support. The Minister has been in correspondence with me about amendment No. 151—notably in a letter dated 30 December—because we raised certain matters in Committee. We are concerned about the offender. We would like the Bill to take into consideration where the offender lives and whether he intends to move during the currency of the order; if he works, attends school or another educational establishment; if he owns or rents accommodation; and, lastly, if his religion or beliefs require him to be present at a defined location for a specific period.
Freedom of religion and tolerance are recognised in the terms of the Criminal Justice Act 1991. Section 12(3) states:
The requirements in a curfew order shall … avoid
The amendment ensures that a court obtains certain information from an offender before imposing the order. It ensures, therefore, that the court will examine whether it is appropriate to make such an order, taking account of the offender's circumstances. I seek the Minister's views on those points.
I was asked about research. It has not been decided who should conduct the research. In England, it was conducted by Home Office researchers, and I believe that in Scotland Scottish Office researchers will be able to perform that function. However, as I have said, no decision has been taken.
The hon. Member for Greenock and Port Glasgow (Dr. Godman) asked about amendment No. 251. If the availability of restriction of liberty orders is extended, such extension can, if appropriate, be limited to the stipendiary magistrates arm of the district court. It seems sensible to allow such a distinction, because the sentencing powers of stipendiary magistrates correspond to those of a sheriff under summary jurisdiction, rather than to those of other district courts.
We debated amendment No. 151 in Committee, and I wrote to Committee members about an aspect of it on 30 December. As I said on both occasions, I do not dispute that the factors specified may be relevant to the making of a restriction of liberty order, but I am not convinced that the proposed mechanism is necessary or appropriate, so I am unable to accept that amendment.
Amendments Nos. 220, 221 and 222, tabled by the hon. Member for Perth and Kinross (Ms Cunningham), would require that when courts are being empowered to make restriction of liberty orders, and when methods of monitoring compliance with such orders are being specified, that should be done by regulation subject to affirmative resolution of both Houses.
Those amendments would also require that such regulations could not be altered before the Secretary of State had laid before both Houses a statement assessing the effectiveness of the regulations. We believe that the amendments are technically flawed, but I do not make too much of that point. The main reason for opposing them is that they would introduce an inappropriately burdensome procedure for prescribing which courts and which methods of monitoring are to be authorised in relation to restriction of liberty orders.
Scots law does not require such a procedure to be followed for other community disposals. For example, when a court is being empowered to make community service orders, there is no requirement either for regulations to be subject to affirmative resolution or for a prior statement. Scots law merely requires the Secretary of State to notify a court that the necessary arrangements exist.
We intend to be as open as possible about the operation of restriction of liberty orders. I am happy to give a commitment that, before moving beyond the proposed pilot schemes, we will fully assess those schemes and make the results available. On that basis, I hope that the hon. Lady will not press her amendments.
Amendments made: No. 246, in page 6, line 43, leave out
'for any period up to 12 months'
(3A) A requirement under subsection (2)(a) above made in respect of a child offender may not be made for a period in excess of 3 months.
No. 247, in page 7, line 32, at end insert—
'( ) Without prejudice to subsection (6) above, before making a restriction of liberty order in respect of a child offender the court shall obtain and consider information about that offender's family circumstances and the likely effect on those circumstances of the order which the court is proposing to make.'.
No. 7, in page 7, line 47, at end insert—
'( ) Regulations under subsection (9) above may make such transitional and consequential provisions, including provision in relation to the continuing effect of any restriction of liberty order in force when new regulations are made, as the Secretary of State considers appropriate.
( ) A court shall not make a restriction of liberty order which requires an offender to be in or, as the case may be, not to be in, a particular place or places unless it is satisfied that his compliance with that requirement can be monitored by the means of monitoring which it intends to specify in the order.'.
No. 251, in page 7, line 47, at end insert—
( ) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (9) above, in relation to district courts, regulations under that subsection may make provision as respects such courts by reference to whether the court is constituted by a stipendiary magistrate or by one or more justices'.—[Lord James Douglas-Hamilton.]
Amendment proposed: No. 221, in page 7, line 47, at end insert—
'(9A) No regulations under subsection (9) above shall be made after the first regulations have been made under that subsection until the Secretary of State shall have laid before both Houses of Parliament a statement assessing the effectiveness of the first regulations made under that subsection.'.—[Ms Roseanna Cunningham.]
|Division No. 60]||[6.3 pm|
|Abbott, Ms Diane||Corston, Ms Jean|
|Adams, Mrs Irene||Cox, Tom|
|Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE)||Cummings, John|
|Allen, Graham||Cunliffe, Lawrence|
|Alton, David||Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try SE)|
|Anderson, Ms Janet (Ros'dale)||Dafis, Cynog|
|Armstrong, Ms Hilary||Dalyell, Tam|
|Ashdown, Paddy||Davidson, Ian|
|Austin-Walker, John||Davies, Denzil (Llanelli)|
|Banks, Tony (Newham NW)||Davis, Terry (B'ham Hodge H)|
|Barnes, Harry||Dewar, Donald|
|Barron, Kevin||Dixon, Don|
|Beith, A J||Donohoe, Brian H|
|Bell, Stuart||Eagle, Ms Angela|
|Benn, Tony||Eastham, Ken|
|Bermingham, Gerald||Ennis, Jeff|
|Bray, Dr Jeremy||Ewing, Mrs Margaret|
|Brown, Nicholas (Newcastle E)||Fatchett, Derek|
|Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)||Faulds, Andrew|
|Callaghan, Jim||Field, Frank (Birkenhead)|
|Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)||Fisher, Mark|
|Campbell, Menzies (Fife NE)||Foster, Don (Bath)|
|Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V)||Foulkes, George|
|Campbell-Savours, D N||Fyfe, Mrs Maria|
|Canavan, Dennis||Galbraith, Sam|
|Cann, Jamie||Gapes, Mike|
|Carlile, Alex (Montgomery)||George, Bruce|
|Chisholm, Malcolm||Godman, Dr Norman A|
|Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)||Godsiff, Roger|
|Connarty, Michael||Golding, Mrs Llin|
|Cook, Robin (Livingston)||Gordon, Ms Mildred|
|Graham, Thomas||Meale, Alan|
|Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)||Michael, Alun|
|Grocott, Bruce||Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)|
|Gunnell, John||Moonie, Dr Lewis|
|Hall, Mike||Morley, Elliot|
|Hanson, David||Mowlam, Ms Marjorie|
|Hardy, Peter||Mudie, George|
|Harvey, Nick||Nicholson, Miss Emma (W Devon)|
|Henderson, Doug||Pendry, Tom|
|Hill, Keith (Streatham)||Pickthall, Colin|
|Hinchliffe, David||Pike, Peter L|
|Hodge, Ms Margaret||Pope, Greg|
|Hogg, Norman (Cumbernauld)||Powell, Sir Raymond (Ogmore)|
|Home Robertson, John||Prentice, Mrs B (Lewisham E)|
|Hoon, Geoffrey||Prescott, John|
|Hoyle, Doug||Primarolo, Ms Dawn|
|Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)||Reid, Dr John|
|Hughes, Roy (Newport E)||Rendel, David|
|Hughes, Simon (Southwark)||Robertson, George (Hamilton)|
|Hutton, John||Roche, Mrs Barbara|
|Ingram, Adam||Rooney, Terry|
|Janner, Greville||Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)|
|Jenkins, Brian D (SE Staffs)||Rowlands, Ted|
|Jones, Barry (Alyn & D'side)||Salmond, Alex|
|Jones, Ieuan Wyn (Ynys Môn)||Sheldon, Robert|
|Jones, Martyn (Clwyd SW)||Shore, Peter|
|Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)||Simpson, Alan|
|Jowell, Ms Tessa||Skinner, Dennis|
|Kaufman, Gerald||Smith, Chris (Islington S)|
|Kennedy, Chartes (Ross C & S)||Spearing, Nigel|
|Kennedy, Mrs Jane (Broadgreen)||Spellar, John|
|Kilfoyle, Peter||Steel, Sir David|
|Kirkwood, Archy||Steinberg, Gerry|
|Lestor, Miss Joan (Eccles)||Straw, Jack|
|Lewis, Terry||Sutcliffe, Gerry|
|Liddell, Mrs Helen||Taylor, Mrs Ann (Dewsbury)|
|Livingstone, Ken||Thurnham, Peter|
|Llwyd, Elfyn||Timms, Stephen|
|McAllion, John||Trickett, Jon|
|McAvoy, Thomas||Tyler, Paul|
|Macdonald, Calum||Vaz, Keith|
|McFall, John||Wallace, James|
|McKelvey, William||Watson, Mike|
|Mackinlay, Andrew||Wigley, Dafydd|
|Maclennan, Robert||Williams, Alan (Swansea W)|
|McMaster, Gordon||Williams, Alan W (Carmarthen)|
|McWilliam, John||Wilson, Brian|
|Madden, Max||Winnick, David|
|Maddock, Mrs Diana||Wise, Mrs Audrey|
|Mahon, Mrs Alice|
|Marek, Dr John||Tellers for the Ayes:|
|Marshall, David (Shettleston)||Mr. Andrew Welsh and|
|Marshall, Jim (Leicester S)||Ms Roseanna Cunningham.|
|Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey)||Booth, Hartley|
|Aitken, Jonathan||Boswell, Tim|
|Alexander, Richard||Bottomley, Peter (Eltham)|
|Alison, Michael (Selby)||Bottomley, Mrs Virginia|
|Allason, Rupert (Torbay)||Bowden, Sir Andrew|
|Amess, David||Bowis, John|
|Ancram, Michael||Boyson, Sir Rhodes|
|Arbuthnot, James||Brandreth, Gyles|
|Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham)||Brazier, Julian|
|Ashby, David||Bright, Sir Graham|
|Atkins, Robert||Brooke, Peter|
|Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)||Brown, Michael (Brigg Cl'thorpes)|
|Baker, Kenneth (Mole V)||Browning, Mrs Angela|
|Baldry, Tony||Bruce, Ian (S Dorset)|
|Banks, Matthew (Southport)||Budgen, Nicholas|
|Bates, Michael||Burns, Simon|
|Batiste, Spencer||Burt, Alistair|
|Bellingham, Henry||Butcher, John|
|Bendall, Vivian||Butler, Peter|
|Beresford, Sir Paul||Butterfill, John|
|Bonsor, Sir Nicholas||Carlisle, John (Luton N)|
|Carlisle, Sir Kenneth (Linc'n)||Haselhurst, Sir Alan|
|Carrington, Matthew||Hawkins, Nick|
|Carttiss, Michael||Hawksley, Warren|
|Cash, William||Hayes, Jerry|
|Chapman, Sir Sydney||Heald, Oliver|
|Churchill, Mr||Heath, Sir Edward|
|Clappison, James||Heathcoat-Amory, David|
|Clark, Dr Michael (Rochf'd)||Hendry, Charles|
|Clarke, Kenneth (Rushdiffe)||Heseltine, Michael|
|Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey||Higgins, Sir Terence|
|Coe, Sebastian||Hill, Sir James (Southampton Test)|
|Colvin, Michael||Hogg, Douglas (Grantham)|
|Congdon, David||Horam, John|
|Conway, Derek||Hordern, Sir Peter|
|Coombs, Anthony (Wyre F)||Howell, Sir Ralph (N Norfolk)|
|Coombs, Simon (Swindon)||Hughes, Robert G (Harrow W)|
|Cope, Sir John||Hunt, David (Wirral W)|
|Cormack, Sir Patrick||Hunt, Sir John (Ravensb'ne)|
|Couchman, James||Hunter, Andrew|
|Cran, James||Jack, Michael|
|Currie, Mrs Edwina||Jackson, Robert (Wantage)|
|Curry, David||Jenkin, Bernard (Colchester N)|
|Davies, Quentin (Stamf'd)||Jessel, Toby|
|Davis, David (Boothferry)||Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)|
|Day, Stephen||Jones, Robert B (W Herts)|
|Deva, Nirj Joseph||Kellett-Bowman, Dame Elaine|
|Devlin, Tim||Key, Robert|
|Dorrell, Stephen||King, Tom|
|Douglas-Hamilton, Lord James||Kirkhope, Timothy|
|Dover, Den||Knapman, Roger|
|Duncan, Alan||Knight, Mrs Angela (Erewash)|
|Duncan Smith, Iain||Knight, Greg (Derby N)|
|Dunn, Bob||Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston)|
|Eggar, Tim||Knox, Sir David|
|Elletson, Harold||Kynoch, George|
|Emery, Sir Peter||Lamont, Norman|
|Evans, David (Welwyn Hatf'ld)||Lang, Ian|
|Evans, Jonathan (Brecon)||Lawrence, Sir Ivan|
|Evans, Roger (Monmouth)||Legg, Barry|
|Evennett, David||Leigh, Edward|
|Faber, David||Lennox-Boyd, Sir Mark|
|Fabricant, Michael||Lester, Sir Jim (Broxtowe)|
|Fenner, Dame Peggy||Lidington, David|
|Field, Barry (Isle of Wight)||Lilley, Peter|
|Fishburn, Dudley||Lloyd, Sir Peter (Fareham)|
|Forman, Nigel||Lord, Michael|
|Forsyth, Michael (Stirling)||Luff, Peter|
|Forth, Eric||Lyell, Sir Nicholas|
|Fowler, Sir Norman||MacGregor, John|
|Fox, Dr Liam (Woodspring)||MacKay, Andrew|
|Fox, Sir Marcus (Shipley)||Maclean, David|
|Freeman, Roger||McLoughlin, Patrick|
|French, Douglas||McNair-Wilson, Sir Patrick|
|Fry, Sir Peter||Madel, Sir David|
|Gale, Roger||Maitland, Lady Olga|
|Gallie, Phil||Major, John|
|Gardiner, Sir George||Malone, Gerald|
|Garel-Jones, Tristan||Mans, Keith|
|Garnier, Edward||Marland, Paul|
|Gill, Christopher||Marlow, Tony|
|Gillan, Mrs Cheryl||Marshall, John (Hendon S)|
|Goodlad, Alastair||Marshall, Sir Michael (Arundel)|
|Goodson-Wickes, Dr Charles||Martin, David (Portsmouth S)|
|Gorman, Mrs Teresa||Mawhinney, Dr Brian|
|Gorst, Sir John||Mayhew, Sir Patrick|
|Grant, Sir Anthony (SW Cambs)||Mellor, David|
|Greenway, Harry (Ealing N)||Merchant, Piers|
|Greenway, John (Ryedale)||Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling)|
|Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth N)||Mitchell, Sir David (NW Hants)|
|Gummer, John||Moate, Sir Roger|
|Hague, William||Monro, Sir Hector|
|Hamilton, Sir Archibald||Montgomery, Sir Fergus|
|Hamilton, Neil (Tatton)||Nelson, Anthony|
|Hannam, Sir John||Neubert, Sir Michael|
|Hargreaves, Andrew||Newton, Tony|
|Harris, David||Nicholls, Patrick|
|Nicholson, David (Taunton)||Squire, Robin (Hornchurch)|
|Norris, Steve||Stanley, Sir John|
|Oppenheim, Phillip||Steen, Anthony|
|Ottaway, Richard||Stephen, Michael|
|Page, Richard||Stern, Michael|
|Paice, James||Stewart, Allan|
|Patnick, Sir Irvine||Streeter, Gary|
|Patten, John||Sumberg, David|
|Pattie, Sir Geoffrey||Sweeney, Walter|
|Pawsey, James||Sykes, John|
|Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth||Tapsell, Sir Peter|
|Pickles, Eric||Taylor, Ian (Esher)|
|Porter, David||Taylor, John M (Solihull)|
|Portillo, Michael||Taylor, Sir Teddy|
|Powell, William (Corby)||Temple-Morris, Peter|
|Rathbone, Tim||Thompson, Patrick (Norwich N)|
|Redwood, John||Thornton, Sir Malcolm|
|Richards, Rod||Townsend, Sir Cyril (Bexl'yh'th)|
|Riddick, Graham||Tracey, Richard|
|Robathan, Andrew||Trend, Michael|
|Roberts, Sir Wyn||Trotter, Neville|
|Twinn, Dr Ian|
|Robertson, Raymond S (Ab'dn S)||Vaughan, Sir Gerard|
|Robinson, Mark (Somerton)||Viggers, Peter|
|Roe, Mrs Marion||Waldegrave, William|
|Rowe, Andrew||Walden, George|
|Rumbold, Dame Angela||Walker, Bill (N Tayside)|
|Ryder, Richard||Waller, Gary|
|Sackville, Tom||Ward, John|
|Sainsbury, Sir Timothy||Wardle, Charles (Bexhill)|
|Scott, Sir Nicholas||Waterson, Nigel|
|Shaw, David (Dover)||Watts, John|
|Shaw, Sir Giles (Pudsey)||Wells, Bowen|
|Shephard, Mrs Gillian||Wheeler, Sir John|
|Shepherd, Sir Colin (Heref'd)||Whitney, Sir Raymond|
|Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge)||Whittingdale, John|
|Shersby, Sir Michael||Widdecombe, Miss Ann|
|Sims, Sir Roger||Wiggin, Sir Jerry|
|Skeet, Sir Trevor||Wilkinson, John|
|Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)||Willetts, David|
|Smith, Tim (Beaconsf'ld)||Wilshire, David|
|Soames, Nicholas||Winterton, Nicholas (Macdesf'ld)|
|Speed, Sir Keith||Wolfson, Mark|
|Spencer, Sir Derek||Yeo, Tim|
|Spicer, Sir Jim (W Dorset)||Young, Sir George|
|Spicer, Sir Michael (S Worcs)|
|Spink, Dr Robert||Tellers for the Noes:|
|Spring, Richard||Mr. Timothy Wood and|
|Sproat, Iain||Mrs. Jacqui Lait.|
Amendments made: No. 8, in page 8, line 1, leave out from 'regulations' to end of line 2 and insert
'substitute for the period of—
such period of hours or, as the case may be, months as may be prescribed in the regulations'.
245CC.—(1) Notwithstanding section 228(1) and 245A(1) of this Act, where the court—
(a) intends to make a restriction of liberty order under section 245A(1); and
(b) considers it expedient—
it may make both such orders in respect of the offender.
that the offender should also to 25 be subject to a probation order made under section 228(1) of this Act,
(2) Where the court makes both a restriction of liberty order and a probation order by virtue of subsection (1) above, the clerk of the court shall send a copy of each order to both—
(3) Where the offender by an act or omission fails to comply with a requirement of an order made by virtue of subsection (1) above—
(4) Where the offender by an act or omission fails to comply with both a requirement contained in a probation order and a requirement contained in a restriction of liberty order to which he is subject by virtue of subsection (1) above, he may, without prejudice to subsection (3) above, be dealt with as respects that act or omission either under section 232(2) of this Act or under section 245E(2) of this Act but he shall not be liable to be otherwise dealt with in respect of that act or omission.'.
No. 17, in page 9, line 3, at end insert'; or
(d) revoking the order.
(3) Where the court, on the application of a person other than the offender, proposes to—
(4) If an offender fails to appear before the court after having been cited in accordance with subsection (3) above, the court may issue a warrant for his arrest.'.
No. 18, in page 9, line 14, leave out
'vary the order or revoke it' and insert
( ) A fine imposed under this section in respect of a failure to comply with the requirements of a restriction of liberty order shall be deemed for the purposes of any enactment to be a sum adjudged to be paid by or in respect of a conviction or a penalty imposed on a person summarily convicted.'.
No. 115, in page 9, line 22, at end insert—
'(2) Where the court revokes a restriction of liberty order as mentioned in subsection (1) above, and the offender is, by virtue of section 245CC(1) of this Act, subject to a probation order, it shall, before disposing of the offender under subsection (1) above, discharge the probation order.'.
245G. Where a court exercises any power conferred by sections 232(3A), 245D(2) or 245E(2)(b) or (c) of this Act, the clerk of the court shall forthwith give copies of the order varying or revoking the restriction of liberty order to any person responsible for monitoring the offender's compliance with that order and that person shall give a copy of the order to the offender.'.—[Lord James Douglas-Hamilton.]