Julie Elliott: I beg to move, That this House has considered Sunderland’s bid to be City of Culture in 2021. It is, as ever, a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Hollobone. It is an honour for me to be here to talk about my home city of Sunderland and its bid to be city of culture 2021. It came as no surprise to those of us who have had the privilege of calling Sunderland home that we were...
Julie Elliott: Absolutely. My hon. Friend in the neighbouring constituency represents an area that has the beautiful Herrington country park, developed on the site of a former pit heap. There are many wonderful things in her constituency, as indeed there are in the constituency of the other Sunderland MP, my hon. Friend the Member for Washington and Sunderland—
Julie Elliott: The names have changed a lot over the years. My hon. Friend the Member for Washington and Sunderland West (Mrs Hodgson) has the F Pit Museum and Washington Old Hall, the ancestral home of George Washington. Things of a cultural nature are happening right across the city. There is not lukewarm support but passionate backing for a project that the people want and the city needs. Our bid has...
Julie Elliott: What recent discussions he has had with the Government of Israel on the status of Palestinian communities in area C of the west bank threatened with demolition.
Julie Elliott: I thank the Minister for his answer. As we know, we have recently seen a very clear indication from Israel’s Defence Minister about the intention to demolish the communities of Khan al-Ahmar and Susiya, and the military has issued a demarcation order signalling the intention to evacuate communities in the Jordan valley and E1 areas. Does the Minister agree that Israel must be held to...
Julie Elliott: Will the Minister ensure that any scheduled repayments from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service do not have a negative impact on the residents of Sunderland and the wider Tyne and Wear area because of the constraint of the cap on the precept?
Julie Elliott: I welcome much of what the Foreign Secretary has said this afternoon, and the sensitivity with which he has said it, although I think he is making the wrong decision about recognition. During his visit, will the Foreign Secretary raise with Prime Minister Netanyahu the issue of legislation relating to the annexation of settlement blocs in Jerusalem, which would displace 120,000 Palestinian...
Julie Elliott: I welcome the opportunity to speak in this very important debate. The centenary of the Balfour Declaration should not be celebrated in any way, but should instead be a time when we can pause, think about the situation that we are in now because of this statement by a previous parliamentarian, and look carefully at its impact on the situation today. Our responsibility as a country is to find a...
Julie Elliott: What estimate he has made of the number of instances of demolitions, settlement expansion and land appropriation in the west bank.
Julie Elliott: I thank the Minister for that answer. I recently visited the communities of Khan al-Ahmar and Susiya in Area C of the west bank, both of which are under threat of demolition. I was surprised that both have received significant investment from the EU and therefore from the British taxpayer. Will the Minister tell me what representations he has made to the Israeli Government about that?
Julie Elliott: Five tower blocks in my constituency were found on Saturday lunchtime to have this dangerous cladding. By Sunday lunchtime it had all been removed. I praise the housing authority, the local authority and the fire and rescue service for working together. That work was done quickly and the buildings are safe, but obviously more work needs to be done to put them into a good state. Can the...
Julie Elliott: What assessment he has made of the potential merits of allowing alternative forms of proof of identity for voter registration.
Julie Elliott: Last year, it was reported that only 25% of people knew their national insurance number, which is one of the key identifiers. What assessment has the Minister made of the impact that that will have on voter registration?
Julie Elliott: I welcome the fact that the Secretary of State said that she was “minded to report” in her oral statement, but does she not agree that part of the process should be waiting for Leveson 2 to complete so that we can look at the issues of corporate governance to which she referred in her statement, as they are very worrying and concerning to the public at large?
Julie Elliott: What assessment the Electoral Commission has made of the potential implications of introducing ID requirements at polling stations.
Julie Elliott: I thank my hon. Friend for that answer. What steps is the Electoral Commission taking to ensure that the poorest and most vulnerable in society are not disproportionately affected by the requirement to show ID at polling stations?
Julie Elliott: Will the Minister look at the assessment of people with long-term progressive conditions who are applying for PIP, in the light of some of the issues that have been raised? Would she consider removing the need for continued assessment of people with long-term progressive conditions when, by the nature of those conditions, they are getting worse and not improving day by day?
Julie Elliott: What steps the Government are taking to tackle the gender pay gap for women in their 30s and 40s.
Julie Elliott: The gender pay gap in the north-east is 28%, some 10 percentage points higher than the national average. What is the Minister and the Government doing to address those very stark regional variations?
Julie Elliott: Does my hon. Friend agree that the fact that that drug is routinely available in France, Germany, Austria and Canada shows that our appraisal system is not working in this country.