Results 1–20 of 191 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Oliver Dowden

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: As the hon. Gentleman is seeking an intervention, perhaps he would like to note that the cost of the House of Lords has actually fallen, not risen, since 2010, so the cost of politics is being cut in relation to the upper Chamber.

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: It is a pleasure to follow the hon. Member for Newport West (Paul Flynn), with whom I served—albeit briefly—on the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee. As ever, I am afraid that I may disagree with him on a number of points, but I will come to that in a moment. I will also keep my remarks brief, because many of the points that I wish to raise have already...

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. Councils up and down the country, including Hertsmere Borough Council which I represent, did a fantastic job of living within their means and cutting excessive expenditure.

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: I must correct my hon. Friend before I move on to his substantive point. I am quite confident that as a Member of this place my role in national life has increased, not decreased. It is a great privilege to represent the people of Hertsmere in this place. On my hon. Friend’s specific point, my hon. Friend the Member for Harwich and North Essex makes an important point, which should be...

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: I had noted the absence of the Liberal Democrats, and I regret it, because I will make some further points about their role in our failure to deliver the reduction that we wanted. It would have been nice if they had had the opportunity to intervene and respond, but sadly they were unable to make it. The reduction in the number of Members of Parliament was an important part of the package,...

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. That is my second, and principal, reason for disagreeing with the Bill, and I shall come to it very shortly. The point about cutting the cost of politics has been made by many other Members, so I will not labour it, but the statistics are pretty clear. With 600 Members, we will still be relatively over-represented in terms of the number of MPs per capita in...

Parliamentary Constituencies (Amendment) Bill (1 Dec 2017)

Oliver Dowden: The obvious example to cite is India. According to a House of Commons briefing, it has on average 2,192,379 electors per representative.

Budget Resolutions - Income Tax (Charge) (28 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: It is a pleasure to follow the eloquent remarks of the right hon. Member for Leeds Central (Hilary Benn). I am conscious that we are on a tight time limit, so I shall confine my remarks to the question of productivity and its implications for public spending. By the OBR’s own recognition, many of the numbers that it has produced are speculative, but it is clear that we have a long-term...

Budget Resolutions - Income Tax (Charge) (28 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: We should consider whether we are able to release further resources for infrastructure spending. For example, the materials used for digging Crossrail 1 could be released straight into Crossrail 2, and we could look at HS2 and see whether we can release resources into HS3. It is those sort of long-term decisions that countries such as South Korea, China and India are making and that we are...

Budget Resolutions - Income Tax (Charge) (28 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: As the hon. Lady is taking a trip down memory lane, does she recall the Labour party’s repeated predictions when we embarked on this necessary course of public spending restraint that it would lead to 1 million jobs being lost? In fact, 3 million jobs have been created.

Industrial Strategy (27 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: I welcome the Secretary of State’s emphasis on creative industries and construction, both of which are large employers in my constituency. Does he agree that there is a real risk of inflationary pressure in the construction sector, particularly if we are to meet our ambitious housing targets; and that in the short term, as we leave Europe, that will mean a need for continuing...

Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister: Engagements (15 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: Grand- parents have a vital role to play in the upbringing of their grandchildren, something which at a time of rising life expectancy they are better equipped than ever to fulfil. Does the Prime Minister therefore agree with me that we should send a strong signal from this House not only that there should be a presumption in their favour when it comes to adoption, but that they should be...

Hospital Car Parking Charges (Abolition): Tax Avoidance and Evasion (14 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: The Minister rightly talks about the need for the wealthiest to pay their fair share. Does he agree that one of the most obscene things under the last Labour Government was the fact that cleaners were having to pay more tax than the hedge-fund owners who employed them? It was a Conservative Government who closed that so-called Mayfair loophole.

Oral Answers to Questions — Education: GCSE Results (6 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: As the Government rightly continue to push local authorities to make provision for more housing, the need for additional places at free schools and academies will increase. In my constituency, that makes the case for a new school to serve Radlett, Bushey and Borehamwood all the more pressing. What steps are the Government taking so that there is co-ordination between local authorities and the...

Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill (3 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: My hon. Friend rightly pays tribute to the work of our hon. Friend the Member for North West Hampshire and makes an important point, which pertains to mental health, about children needing a safe architecture in which to grow up. Just as we, as parents, give them safety and security in the physical world, so they must have safety and security in the online world, where they spend increasingly...

Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill (3 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: My hon. Friend raises an important point. Does she agree that we must be careful not to judge people in that situation? There is always a temptation to think that there could be other reasons for it, but often they come from terrible circumstances, for example, having been the victims of child abuse and so on. There still needs to be a change in society’s attitudes, as we see when we...

Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill (3 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: Thank you very much for calling me to speak so early in the debate, Mr Speaker. I should like to begin by paying tribute to the hon. Member for Croydon North (Mr Reed) for bringing forward this legislation, which I very much support. In common with most Members, I am sure, I find that mental health is a rising issue in my constituency. Many of my constituents frequently contact me about it...

Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill (3 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: I quite agree that we need to have the right levels of staff, and that is why I am so pleased that the Government have protected police funding. I was going to come on to this point, but I will raise it now. In the health service, we are moving towards achieving parity between mental and physical health. Some of the stats on this are very welcome. We are now spending £11.6 billion a year...

Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill (3 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. I do not think anyone is suggesting that police officers are actively seeking to treat mental health patients in an incorrect fashion, but there is a need for training so that they understand the correct way to behave.

Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Bill (3 Nov 2017)

Oliver Dowden: I am not sure that I entirely agree with the hon. Gentleman. Of course there have been historical problems with the funding of mental health. I hope that Opposition Members will recognise, as we do on the Government Benches, that over the decades there has not been enough funding going into that area. On the question of the NHS, however, despite this Government inheriting the largest budget...


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