Schedule to be inserted as Schedule AA1 to the Mental Capacity Act 2005

Part of Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 9:45 am on 15th January 2019.

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Photo of Alex Norris Alex Norris Labour/Co-operative, Nottingham North 9:45 am, 15th January 2019

Yes. That clearly shows Stockton’s commitment to ensuring that there are no backlogs and that it complies with its legal responsibilities. It also shows that the system there works in the best interests of the individual, rather than around council budgets. That is a political decision, as my hon. Friend says. There is a real question as to whether we establish and resource a system that makes that the norm everywhere, or whether, up and down the country, hard-pressed social care leads will make judgments and say, “Hang on a minute; I am getting a bit of pressure from colleagues at council budget time. Can we really afford to resource this properly?”. That should be a real concern to us.

I move on to amendments 37 to 39. In general, beefing up the arrangements on page 16, line 12, of the Bill seems a good idea; we know that, because the Minister seeks to do it through a Government amendment. I am concerned that if we accept only Government amendments, there is still far too much interpretation in the Bill. My hon. Friend the Member for Stockton North—I have two hon. Friends from Stockton behind me and I am not sure who is from the north and who from the south.