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extension of leave to remain

Part of Coronavirus Bill – in the House of Commons at 8:30 pm on 23rd March 2020.

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Photo of Nick Thomas-Symonds Nick Thomas-Symonds Shadow Solicitor General, Shadow Minister (Home Office) (Security) 8:30 pm, 23rd March 2020

This debate has been carried out in a constructive spirit and I hope that the Government listen to all suggestions, but this issue is a real concern. If this emergency lasts—which I am afraid it is going to—and people are put in situations where they are close to their abusers, we must still have some sort of safeguards in place, particularly in our courts system.

Our prisons cannot become laboratories for transmission, and neither can our immigration detention centres—a point that I hope the Paymaster General will pass on to the Home Secretary.

The issue of burial has clearly caused great controversy. I know that the Paymaster General is one of the people who have come up with the final version on this matter, and I thank her for the efforts that she has made. This issue is clearly vital for Muslims and those of the Jewish faith. Clearly, they need to be in a position where we respect their rights about burial as far as we possibly can. The wording of Government amendment 52 is now much stronger, and I welcome that, but the Government could also communicate with local authorities as to how they want that measure to be interpreted in the days and weeks ahead.