Results 1–20 of 7672 for speaker:Baroness Smith of Basildon

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: I am grateful for the opportunity to hold this debate on issues that are of particular concern to me and my constituents, especially those who are former employees of Visteon. I am pleased to see the support in the Chamber for the issues I am raising this evening, which is unusual on a Thursday, from my hon. Friends the Members for Thurrock (Andrew Mackinlay), for Edmonton (Mr. Love) and for...

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: I am grateful for the hon. Gentleman's comments. I should point out that the hon. Member for East Antrim (Sammy Wilson) has turned up this evening and that two hon. Members from Belfast—the hon. Members for Belfast, South (Dr. McDonnell) and for Belfast, North (Mr. Dodds)—have also given their support. Visteon has never made a profit. The closure and sale of some other Visteon plants...

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: My right hon. Friend is absolutely right. In some ways I would go further. I find it strange that a deficit should be allowed to run for so many years, if doing so is not in the interests of the company concerned. On 2 March 2009, I went to the Visteon radiator plant in Basildon at the request of union representatives to meet members of Unite and Visteon management. At that time, staff were...

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: The hon. Gentleman is right and I will develop the point about the relationship with Ford. Visteon relies on the fact that there was a new book—the orange or pumpkin book—but that does not remove the fact that the blue book contained their lifetime terms and conditions. Many former employees still believe that the commitment to Ford's terms and conditions means just that; that Ford still...

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: I am unclear whether there is a legal obligation and I want to look into that further. I am absolutely clear that there is a moral obligation. I welcome the fact that Ford of Europe's senior management have met Unite. However, I am disappointed to be informed that, so far: "At these discussions, Ford acknowledged the concerns expressed and agreed to pass them on to senior management in...

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: Is the Minister aware that there are rumoured plans to move Visteon Engineering Services in Basildon away from the town to another location? That would be a further blow to my constituency from this company.

Visteon Factory (Basildon) (30 Apr 2009)

Angela Smith: Will my hon. Friend press the pensions regulator to investigate this case?

Business of the House (21 May 2009)

Angela Smith: On 30 April, Mr. Speaker, you gave me the opportunity to have a debate on the Adjournment of the House, after Visteon closed its three UK manufacturing plants, leaving workers in Basildon, Enfield and Belfast with no jobs, no redundancy settlement and fearful for their pensions. May I update you, Mr. Speaker? Following the debate that you allowed, a campaign by Unite and help from the Ford...

Written Answers — Duchy of Lancaster: Departmental Pay (10 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: Based on a current estimate of staff salaries the overall pay costs for Cabinet Office communications are likely to reduce but any savings will be dependent upon the levels of salary finally agreed for the new staff appointed.

Written Answers — Duchy of Lancaster: Government Departments: Hotels (10 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: Ministers and civil servants are required under the "Ministerial Code" and the "Civil Service Management Code" to make the most efficient and cost effective travel arrangements.

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: I beg to move, That this House has considered the matter of social mobility and fair access to the professions. I am pleased that my first Cabinet Office debate concerns such an important issue—one of the most important that must be dealt with by society as a whole, and a subject on which I feel particularly strongly. I want to say something about the work of the panel on fair access to the...

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: I entirely agree; the hon. Gentleman will know that the matter was raised several times in Committee. The Government are looking at it, because we do not want people with special educational needs to be excluded from apprenticeships. I assure him that my right hon. Friend the Minister has taken his comments on board. That point also relates to the charity v, which is looking at full-time...

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: That is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Member for Darlington. It is not my report or my panel. I wish I could assist the hon. Gentleman. It would not be for the Government to tell my right hon. Friend what to do and when to present his report.

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: I am grateful to my right hon. Friend. I think that "summer" was a fair representation, although we are not always sure that July is summer. Some professions have perversely become less, not more, socially representative over time, especially accountancy and journalism. The panel has so far identified five underlying barriers to improving access to the professions and the House would be...

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: The hon. Gentleman makes a valid point. Many professions recognise that if they are to attract the brightest, best and most able, they will need to have a much fairer system of progression. The hon. Gentleman mentioned the Bar Council, and there is Julia Neuberger's report on that issue. Many professions have taken good steps forward, but they acknowledge that they have more to do in facing...

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: The panel will be looking at, and making recommendations on, precisely those issues. The extent of such opportunities varies from profession to profession. Graduate entry has opened up access in some professions, but, perversely, it has had the opposite effect in others. That is why the panel has been asked to make independent recommendations on all these issues; we want fair access to the...

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: I am puzzled by the hon. Gentleman's point, although I accept that he means it well, in that the two things seem complementary. The argument we are putting forward today—this is why we are so keen to see the panel's recommendations—is that through every life cycle of someone's education and skills training, the support and training needs to be in place. Having support and fairer access to...

Bill Presented: Social Mobility and the Professions (11 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for explaining his position, but he has misrepresented the Government. We have never suggested that we should give up on anything beyond early years, but we feel very strongly that support for early years is a crucial foundation for later development. He said that children's experience in their early years need not determine their destiny, but the evidence...

Prayers: Crown Employment (Nationality) Bill (12 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: First, I congratulate my hon. Friend the Member for Hendon (Mr. Dismore) on his continuing commitment to this Bill; I believe he said that this is his seventh attempt with this particular piece of legislation. I also understand that the former Member for Wimbledon, Mr. Casale, also introduced this Bill, so it has a long and dignified history. As I understand it, the Bill has sought in the...

Prayers: Crown Employment (Nationality) Bill (12 Jun 2009)

Angela Smith: Yes, that is the case. If the legislation changed and that country was no longer a member of the Commonwealth—if it had been formally excluded by amendment of the Act—its nationals would not then be eligible for employment. The EEA comprises not only the member states of the EU, but, as hon. Members will be aware, the nations of the European Free Trade Association. That means that the...


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