Casey Report

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:17 pm on 6th December 2016.

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Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government 1:17 pm, 6th December 2016

I am pleased that the hon. Lady agrees that many of the issues raised in the report have been ignored for too long by too many politicians on all sides of the House. It is good that there is general agreement on that. By taking the report as an important first step, we can start to deal together with some of the issues.

The hon. Lady asked about English language. I am a little disappointed that having started by saying that we should take a mature approach, she then made the point about the Cornish language. If she had looked more closely, she would have seen that it was an entirely misleading headline. She spoke about spending on languages by my Department, so I will tell her the facts. In the past six years the Department has spent £780,000 on the Cornish language, but in the past five years it has spent £11 million on community-based English language programmes. On top of that, the rest of the Government has spent hundreds of millions of pounds on supporting English. If we are to have a proper debate, the hon. Lady would be well advised to stick to the facts and use them in the debate.

The hon. Lady asked whether there will be fairer funding for local government. She should know that there is currently a local government fairer funding review, which will report early next year. On the Muslim Council of Britain and some of its early comments on the report, it is important to highlight that I certainly want to speak with all groups, including the Muslim Council of Britain and many others, that want to comment on the report and make suggestions on how we can take integration and cohesion forward.

The hon. Lady also asked about safeguarding, particularly of young Muslims who might be vulnerable in some way. She will know that the Prevent programme is exactly that: a safeguarding programme. That is something I hope the whole House can support.