Mesothelioma — Question

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 11:06 am on 5th December 2013.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench 11:06 am, 5th December 2013

While thanking the noble Earl for his reply, does he recall the assurance he gave to the House, when an all-party amendment—which would have created a small, statutory levy to support mesothelioma funding—was defeated by 199 votes to 192, that insurance companies would voluntarily step up to the plate? Given that there have been 2,400 deaths from mesothelioma this year, with 60,000 anticipated over the next 25 years, and with the imminent ending of even the existing insurance industry funding, would it not be shameful to leave unfunded research that could save lives and prevent vast expenditure on compensation? The Mesothelioma Bill is now before another place, with an amendment supported by both Conservative and Labour Members of the House of Commons. Surely Ministers should be looking again at this practical way of finding a cure for this deadly disease.