Clause 1

Part of Justice and Security (Northern Ireland) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:30 pm on 16th January 2007.

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Photo of Paul Goggins Paul Goggins Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Northern Ireland Office 5:30 pm, 16th January 2007

Let me try to be constructive. There are issues here which will divide this Committee, because there are issues of principle and genuine disagreements. In trying to set out a definition, we are seeking the best and the tightest definition. I discount proposals, however, that we should leave out relatives and friends, because I think that they should be included. We are trying to define the nature of a family relationship. Some of this is already set in statute, and some of it is not.

I will reflect on our discussion. If there is a better way of expressing this, I would be more than happy to come forward with a suggestion. If there is not, the hon. Lady will at least know on Report that I have thought about it.