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Data Protection, Privacy and Electronic Communications (Amendments etc) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 - Motion to Approve

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:00 pm on 18th February 2019.

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Photo of Lord Adonis Lord Adonis Labour 5:00 pm, 18th February 2019

I have to say that this for me is a black box. Because of my other duties I have not been able to spend time analysing what is going on in Sub-Committees A and B, but this is very important because hundreds of these instruments are coming to us.

I turn to the issue of there being no consultation, which my noble friend Lord Rooker referred to. I have been going on about it for weeks. This has been true of every single no-deal instrument that has come to your Lordships. It is deeply and profoundly unsatisfactory. In my view this ought to have been flagged up for each of these instruments from the beginning and ought to have been a reason for them not to come before the House. How can we possibly conduct the proper business of the nation in terms of changing the law when we do not have any public consultation with any of the sectors that are affected by these instruments? We are dependent on the expensive lawyers of the noble Lord, Lord McNally, even to spell out the most basic features of these regulations—which, first, will not be apparent to those of us who are lay people and, secondly, which those people who are affected have had no opportunity to present except through the agency of expensive lawyers who seek to make a living. Of course, the expensive lawyers referred to by the noble Lord, Lord McNally, will now advertise their wares to companies, telling them what the impact of these things is going to be because they did not have a chance to engage with them earlier and make their views known, particularly if they start being adversely affected.