Results 1–20 of 5963 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Gareth Thomas

Future of RAF Northolt (13 Sep 2017)

Gareth Thomas: The Minister describes the work that the Ministry of Defence undertook between 2011 and 2013. Does he acknowledge that it was an error not to share that assessment with local residents, and not to involve them in a full consultation process about the decisions that the Ministry was weighing up?

Future of RAF Northolt (13 Sep 2017)

Gareth Thomas: Does the Minister recognise that despite his words, there will still be widespread concern about the scale and cost of the runway works, and about what they might mean for the future? Will he commit to consulting with residents to explain what that money will achieve?

Future of RAF Northolt (13 Sep 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I beg to move, That this House has considered the future of RAF Northolt. I want to ask the Minister a number of substantive questions about an issue of concern to many of my constituents. What are the Ministry of Defence’s ambitions for the future of RAF Northolt? Do Ministers envisage, as their consultants scoped out, that RAF Northolt could become an alternative to London City...

Future of RAF Northolt (13 Sep 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I am grateful for my hon. Friend’s intervention. I know that his constituency also has concerns about the future of RAF Northolt, and why shouldn’t it? There was a substantial increase in the number of commercial flights just five years ago. Now, Government-commissioned reports suggest a big increase to 50,000 commercial flights into RAF Northolt, and up to £45 million-worth...

Backbench Business: Torture and the Treatment of Asylum Claims — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair] (2 Mar 2017)

Gareth Thomas: Is the Minister satisfied that all asylum caseworkers in the Home Office at the moment have received the full appropriate training for judging whether or not torture has occurred and therefore whether asylum should be granted?

Backbench Business: Torture and the Treatment of Asylum Claims — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair] (2 Mar 2017)

Gareth Thomas: The Minister will be aware that I referenced a full-day training module that was rolled out to some asylum caseworkers, but not all, when the last asylum policy instruction was issued in 2014. Will he now instruct the relevant civil servant to ensure that all asylum caseworkers benefit from that full-day training module?

Backbench Business: Torture and the Treatment of Asylum Claims — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair] (2 Mar 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I appreciate the Minister giving way again. Does he accept that torture is still a significant problem in Sri Lanka?

Backbench Business: Torture and the Treatment of Asylum Claims — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair] (2 Mar 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I pay tribute to the hon. Members for Twickenham (Dr Mathias) and for East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow (Dr Cameron), my hon. Friend the Member for Stretford and Urmston (Kate Green) and the right hon. Member for Orkney and Shetland (Mr Carmichael) for securing this debate on a hugely important topic. I commend the way in which the hon. Member for Twickenham introduced it. I have the...

Backbench Business: Torture and the Treatment of Asylum Claims — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair] (2 Mar 2017)

Gareth Thomas: Is there not a further test for us as a country? Not only should we have the higher standard in terms of rejecting torture and having the best treatment, as the hon. Lady, but when an asylum seeker comes to this country and alleges torture, it is our duty to take that case particularly seriously. Is the hon. Lady aware of concerns that people from Sri Lanka who have applied for asylum,...

Backbench Business: Torture and the Treatment of Asylum Claims — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair] (2 Mar 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I support what the hon. Lady is saying, and it will be interesting to hear the Minister’s response. According to the Freedom from Torture report for this debate, in many of the torture-related asylum cases it examined, where a refusal was overturned on appeal, the immigration judge specifically referred to the strength and high quality of the medical evidence. That suggests that the...

Oral Answers to Questions — Communities and Local Government: Topical Questions (27 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: With 1 million-plus adults in England with unmet care needs and the head of the NHS warning of the impact the social care crisis is having, does the Secretary of State now agree with, among others, the Chair of the Health Committee today that the Government can no longer ignore the funding crisis in adult social care?

Oral Answers to Questions — Communities and Local Government: Topical Questions (27 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: No one will be surprised by the lack of urgency in the Secretary of State’s response, not least No. 10, so let me ask him another question. The Local Government Association estimates that, taking into account social care, there will be a funding gap of almost £6 billion for critical local services for the people of England by 2020. What is the Secretary of State going to do about...

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: With social care in crisis, a huge number of businesses deeply worried about rising business rates bills and the council tax set to increase by 25% by 2020, this local government finance settlement may work for Ministers, but it will certainly not work for anyone else. While it is good to hear that there may be some help for the businesses most affected by the revaluation, the Prime...

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: My hon. Friend makes a very good point, which is why it is all the more worrying that Ministers want to abolish the revenue support grant totally under the Local Government Finance Bill. Perhaps I should not be too harsh on the Secretary of State. After all, he has had a rough week. He was accused by the former Conservative party chairman of “spinning the numbers”, and I hear that...

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I encourage the right hon. Lady, for whom I normally have a lot of respect, not to make such partisan and, I suspect, inaccurate points, but to look at a booklet published by the LGA Labour group that gives 100 examples of the way in which Labour councils have innovated during the past few years. She may want to encourage some Conservative councillors that she knows to follow such examples....

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I certainly welcome small business rates relief. We will have to wait and see whether Ministers will raid the pot that some businesses were hoping to benefit from, in terms of that rates relief, to fund support to other businesses that will see even bigger increases than they were expecting in their business rates bills.

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I am sorry that the right hon. Gentleman was not successful in his efforts to get on to the Local Government Finance Bill Committee, but if he will bear with me, I will to come on to Wokingham and social care.

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I am glad the Minister got to his feet, because I was coming on to his performance yesterday in Committee. Given the deep and profound concerns about the business rates revaluation, it was a little surprising for the Secretary of State to send out his Minister to reject the idea that any change to business rates was necessary. His spokesperson was still being quoted yesterday as claiming that...

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: As we have gently suggested before in this Chamber, we simply do not think it is the right time to cut corporation tax for businesses like Amazon, Sports Direct or Britain’s biggest banks. It is important that we get business rates right, because from April 2019 local government will be increasingly reliant on that income stream to fund vital public services. Since the Conservative...

Local Government Finance (22 Feb 2017)

Gareth Thomas: I always support things that improve services to local people, but I say gently to the hon. Gentleman that I am surprised at his complacency and apparent belief that there is no social care crisis at all—that seemed to be the implication of his remarks. Many local authorities up and down the country are deeply worried about the social care situation. I suspect that if he spoke to...


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