Results 1–20 of 733 for speaker:Stuart McDonald

Bedford Prison (13 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: What we see today, yet again, is the horrendous impact of austerity cuts on the state of prisons. Prison staffing levels are down by almost one third since 2010, and that contrasts, by the way, with a 14% increase in Scotland over the same period. So we join the calls for significant new resources for new prison officers, for increased staff retention and for equipment and training in the...

Women and Equalities: Shared Parental Leave (13 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: What steps her Department is taking to promote the take-up of shared parental leave.

Women and Equalities: Shared Parental Leave (13 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: No awareness campaign on shared parental leave, however welcome, can lead to a significant increase in uptake while structural issues—the fact that men still, on the whole, earn more than women, for example—are making it really hard for families to make this choice. What will the Government do to follow international best practice and make parental leave more accessible and affordable?

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Offence of threatening with a non-corrosive substance (11 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: New clause 2 is the first of a number of official Opposition amendments that would create new criminal offences. This may be a good point to repeat what I said when we started line-by-line consideration of the Bill. So far as Scotland is concerned, the Bill is a complex mix of devolved and reserved competencies. The UK and Scottish Governments have agreed that it would be better to combine...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Delivery of bladed articles to persons under 18 (6 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I will be brief. There was a lot of sense in what the right hon. Member for East Ham said, particularly about the wording: “when they entered into the arrangement”. I look forward to hearing what the Minister has to say about that. It brings to mind the amendment I tabled on the equivalent provision on corrosive substances, where the test in the Bill is that the delivery company...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Defences to offence under section 15 (6 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I thank the Minister for her explanation of the defences set out in the clause. I do not think that anybody has a problem with the defence set out in subsection (1), which seems absolutely reasonable. Subsection (4) seems fine, so far as it goes, although there is some suggestion that it might be useful to add some other purposes to that list. However, subsections (2) and (3) are what my...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Defences to offence under section 15 (6 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I beg to move amendment 45, in clause 16, page 15, line 26, a t end insert “for a particular lawful purpose.” This is a probing amendment to allow debate on the appropriate scope of defences under Clause 16. It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Gray. Given the vigorous debate we have had on clause 15, clause 16 is also important,...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Defences to offence under section 15 (6 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: That is a perfectly legitimate question. I look forward to hearing what the Minister has to say to that. It begs the question: to what extent is there an onus on the seller to scrutinise the claimed purpose of the adaptation, be it for historical re-enactment or anything else? Is it simply a case of whether the adaptation was consistent with the claimed purpose, or is there more involved? We...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Delivery of corrosive products to persons under 18 (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I am grateful to the Minister for her explanation. I will give it some further thought. A couple of points in her explanation seemed to hinge on not wanting to allow posties and so on to get caught up in these provisions. We must remind ourselves that, as I understand it, this offence will be committed by a body corporate, so we will in no way see posties being brought before a court of law...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Delivery of corrosive products to persons under 18 (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I beg to move amendment 43, in clause 4, page 4, line 41, lea ve out “and the seller is outside the United Kingdom at that time”. This is a probing amendment to allow debate on whether the offence should be restricted to where the seller is outside the United Kingdom.

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Delivery of corrosive products to persons under 18 (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: Clause 4 concerns the delivery of corrosive products to under-18s. Amendments 43 and 44 are probing amendments, tabled in my name, and they seek to test the Government’s thinking in this area. Amendment 43 merely queries why a delivery company commits an offence in delivering a corrosive substance to a person under 18 only if the seller is outside the United Kingdom. Why is it okay for...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Sale of corrosive products to persons under 18 (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: It is with some reluctance that I must explain why I cannot support this group of amendments. Amendment 53 relates to clause 12, which sets out defences applicable in England and Wales only; there are equivalent provisions in clauses 13 and 14 for Scotland and Northern Ireland. We are talking about a devolved matter, and I understand that the Scottish Government, who have obviously agreed...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Sale of corrosive products to persons under 18 (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: The amendment served its purpose in scrutinising a number of possible scenarios where questions might be asked about whether supply should be an offence alongside sale. I thank the hon. Member for Sheffield, Heeley for further exploring the amendment, and for doing so far more methodically than I did. She rightly queried whether the lack of an offence of supply undermines the intention behind...

Public Bill Committee: Offensive Weapons Bill: Sale of corrosive products to persons under 18 (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I beg to move amendment 42, in clause 1, page 1, line 3, afte r “sell” insert “or supply” This is a probing amendment to debate whether the scope of the offence is broad enough or should be extended to include supply without payment. Thank you, Mr Gray, for your whistle-stop tour of the procedure to be followed during these proceedings,...

British Citizenship Fees: Children — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I start by thanking all hon. Members for their very thoughtful contributions. The debate has served a very useful purpose in making clear to the Home Office that there is a consensus that citizenship should not just be celebrated, but positively encouraged and facilitated. There is a pretty broad and deep consensus in the Chamber, as well as a concern that the Home Office is prioritising...

British Citizenship Fees: Children — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: We are getting to the crux of the matter. Does the Minister accept that the statutory right to citizenship is completely different from an immigration application, indefinite leave to remain, or anything else? These kids have a right to citizenship. It is no more appropriate to charge them an extra fee to subsidise other parts of the immigration and nationality system than it would be to...

British Citizenship Fees: Children — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I beg to move, That this House has considered fees for registering children as British citizens. It is good to see you in the Chair, Mr Hollobone. I trust that you are feeling suitably refreshed after the summer recess. What better way to start the new term than by seeking to ensure that all children entitled to British citizenship can access it and not be prevented from doing so by an...

British Citizenship Fees: Children — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I hope good things come of the review, but I suspect that the Minister will be in a better position to provide us with answers. We seek a system that reflects what Parliament intended when it passed the British Nationality Act 1981—that is, a system that makes it easy for kids with the requisite close connections to Britain to exercise their right to British citizenship, not one that...

British Citizenship Fees: Children — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: I am grateful to the hon. Gentleman for his intervention—I shall be very happy to champion the cause of British citizenship for the next few years at least. He makes the absolutely valid point that, on the basis of international comparisons, the amount that we charge children is exorbitant. It does not compare well at all. The Project for the Registration of Children as British Citizens...

British Citizenship Fees: Children — [Mr Philip Hollobone in the Chair] (4 Sep 2018)

Stuart McDonald: The hon. Gentleman has been a champion of this cause on the Home Affairs Committee. I agree that there should be no fee for children who have been in the care system. The early-day motion that I tabled referred to that and I will address it momentarily. The Minister met me and representatives from PRCBC and Amnesty to hear our arguments. I am grateful that she was willing to listen. I want to...


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