New Clause 11 — Guidance on offences that involve hatred on grounds of sexual orientation

Part of Pension Credit and Personal Expense Allowance (Duty of Consultation and Review) – in the House of Commons at 5:30 pm on 24th March 2009.

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Photo of Evan Harris Evan Harris Shadow Science Minister 5:30 pm, 24th March 2009

I agree with the hon. Lady and I would point out that taking the word "insulting" out of section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986, which covers causing harassment, distress and alarm through words or behaviour that are threatening, abusive or insulting, will achieve exactly what she wants. That is the change in the law that she rightly requests, because that is the provision under which the couple were wrongly pursued. It is not a surprise that the police would not give way, because the statute includes the word "insulting". Does she agree that that is the way forward?

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