Jim Cunningham: Linked to universal credit is the whole question of funding, including for women’s shelters, for example, and nursery provision. Can we have statement on that?
Jim Cunningham: My point is that the two are linked, but if the Leader of the House wants to talk about it separately, the issue is about funding for women’s shelters, which has been badly cut.
Jim Cunningham: I cannot see how this can be an incentive for people to go into work when most of the jobs they get are on zero-hours contracts. On the other hand, people are driven to food banks, which were brought in by the Churches to deal with the refugee problem, not to deal with the problems of this country.
Jim Cunningham: What recent steps his Department has taken to support implementation of the Government’s counter-terrorism strategy overseas.
Jim Cunningham: Following last year’s decision to strip the Foreign Office of its responsibilities for co-ordinating the UK’s diplomatic counter-terrorism relationships, what reassurances can the Foreign Secretary provide that his Department’s unique expertise in this area is not being lost?
Jim Cunningham: The hon. Gentleman is making some interesting points. I have consulted the powers that be in my constituency, where I have two universities, and there is concern about the consequences for science of ending the free movement of labour, certainly in relation to the specialists who come in to help train people. Experts very often come from Europe to teach science and technology, and there is...
Jim Cunningham: What plans he has to publish a White Paper on trade.
Jim Cunningham: What transitional plans does the Secretary of State have for the transitional period if he cannot necessarily do the trade deals that he wants to do?
Jim Cunningham: I was very interested in the justification from the Leader of the House for the Government’s actions on those two votes. We noticed that she sloganized for Conservative Central Office by blaming the last Labour Government for running the country into debt when she knows that it was her friends, the bankers in America, who caused the problem.
Jim Cunningham: There is another example: the Conservative Government after the coalition were defeated on the vote over whether we should bomb Syria. The then Prime Minister made a statement from the Dispatch Box to clarify the situation. His words were, “I get the message.” This Government have not got the message yet.
Jim Cunningham: If he will make a statement on his departmental responsibilities.
Jim Cunningham: Can the Secretary of State tell us what progress has been made regarding an inquiry into the contaminated blood scandal?
Jim Cunningham: I want to reinforce what was said by my hon. Friend the Member for Dudley North (Ian Austin). It is vital for the west midlands that the Minister meets the police and crime commissioner, as well as MPs from the area, as soon as he can to try to resolve this problem. There is a lack of resources for police and local authorities and a weakness in the law—that is meant in no way to...
Jim Cunningham: I have two universities in my constituency, and further education colleges. As my hon. Friend knows, not only have the Government abolished the education maintenance allowance, but more importantly, they have been trying to sell off the Student Loans Company. Interest levels will go higher if that goes through.
Jim Cunningham: Will my hon. Friend give way?
Jim Cunningham: rose—
Jim Cunningham: Has my hon. Friend noticed that the Government do not necessarily have to abide by the pay reviews? In other words, they could give an increase that goes further than what the pay review body recommends. The Tories are wrecking the national health service. They should put their money where their mouth is. If they really appreciate NHS and its staff, they should vote with us tonight.
Jim Cunningham: It is not for us to provide answers for the Government; it is for the Government to provide answers for us. More importantly, has my hon. Friend noticed that the Government no longer talk about their “economic strategy”? Does he know why that is? It is because they have not got one any more.
Jim Cunningham: Does my hon. Friend not agree that the Prime Minister, having been denied the mandate for the hard Brexit that she wanted, is using the Bill as another method of achieving that objective?
Jim Cunningham: My hon. Friend has just touched on how the Minister is going to implement these measures, which is what I asked him about earlier. He will probably know that the Government are closing tax offices throughout the country, with a reduction in staff as a result. How can they honestly say they are going to implement legislation to go after tax dodgers?