Results 1–20 of 1060 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Nia Griffith

Point of Order (5 Dec 2017)

Nia Griffith: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I am sure that you are aware of the worrying reports that the Chancellor has proposed cutting the Army down to just 50,000 personnel—a clear breach of the Government’s commitment to maintain the size of the armed forces. The decision will be taken as part of the national security capability review, which is expected to report early in the...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Departmental Funding (27 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I welcome the Secretary of State to his place, and echo his good wishes—and yours, Mr Speaker—to His Royal Highness Prince Harry and Meghan on their engagement. Security cannot be done on the cheap. With expert after expert highlighting serious gaps in defence funding, it was surreal last week to hear the permanent secretary say that the man in charge had made no formal pre-Budget...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Departmental Funding (27 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I think I will take that as a no. This is serious; we hear that the Marines may be cut by 15% and the Army reduced to 70,000. That would seriously put our international credibility at risk. With the Secretary of State’s Back Benchers in open rebellion and one of his Ministers threatening to quit over cuts, just how bad do things have to get before the Secretary of State does his job,...

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence: Topical Questions (27 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: It is alarming that one of the scant references to defence in the Budget is to forces families in the private rented sector—a less than subtle hint that the future accommodation model threatens to fragment our forces communities. With the private sector characterised by high rents and variable landlord performance, what guarantees can the Minister give that under the future...

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: Will the hon. Gentleman tell us whether he thinks it is better to get this country’s deficit down by asking the wealthy and the big corporations to pay a little bit more, or does he want it to come off the backs of our hard-working armed forces?

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: Perhaps the hon. Gentleman would like to do what the Leader of the Opposition is going to do this evening and vote for the motion to show his unequivocal support for our armed forces.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: rose—

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: As the Minister knows well, newspapers do not always report things the right way round. The point we are making about the marketing costs is that they have rocketed. The question is, what value for money are those costs providing? What value for money is the contract with Capita providing? What evaluation have the Government done of whether the money spent on Capita—spent on...

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: The point that I was making is that there has been a massive increase in the marketing budget for zero returns in additional recruitment. That is the point—is it value for money? The Government are running the contract. They are employing Capita. They need to answer as to exactly what value they think they are getting out of Capita.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I beg to move, That this House notes that the pay of Armed Forces personnel has been capped at 1 per cent in 2017-18 and that this represents another below inflation pay settlement; further notes that the size of the Army, Royal Air Force and Royal Navy and Royal Marines is below stated targets; notes that dissatisfaction with pay has been identified by service personnel as a reason for...

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I am not quite sure where the hon. and learned Lady has been, because that is not evident in the materials that I have been reading. For example, AFCAS—the armed forces continuous attitude survey—clearly states that two thirds of personnel do not find levels of pay satisfactory. That is one of the main reasons why people consider leaving the armed forces.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: It surprises me to hear the hon. Gentleman say that, because not only do we have the evidence in the AFCAS report, but the pay review body itself has talked about frustration with levels of pay and identified that as a real source of concern within the armed forces. I think we must be living on different planets.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I thank my hon. Friend. She very much lives in the real world and is very aware of the cuts that have affected our armed forces, particularly the cuts to pay.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I will take one more intervention and then make some progress.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: I agree that pay is not the only factor that makes it difficult to recruit and retain staff, but it is certainly a significant one when both AFCAS and the pay review body list it as such.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: My hon. Friend refers to an absolutely shocking situation. It is very disappointing that Conservative Members are starting this debate on such a negative note. More and more personnel are choosing to leave the armed forces, and every one of the services is shrinking in size. A recent Government-commissioned report by the right hon. Member for Rayleigh and Wickford (Mr Francois) found that...

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: My hon. Friend makes the point in very eloquently. We live in a world of immense insecurity.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: The hon. Gentleman needs to take cognisance of the fact that in every year we were in office, we spent considerably more on defence than the 2% of GDP commitment. In fact, in our last year in office, we spent 2.5% of GDP on defence—a figure that this Government have never matched.

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: Indeed, the number needs to go up, because costs are escalating. We have said clearly that we would match that increase, but I have to tell the hon. Gentleman that costs are escalating far higher than that figure will accommodate. At this time of immense global uncertainty, we cannot allow numbers to continue to slide, month after month, while all we get from the Government is warm words and...

Opposition Day - [4TH Allotted Day]: Armed Forces Pay (1 Nov 2017)

Nia Griffith: As my hon. Friend says, that is absolutely outrageous, and it betrays an appalling attitude on the part of the Government.


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