Michael Tomlinson: It is a pleasure to follow the hon. Member for Westmorland and Lonsdale (Tim Farron) and so many other speeches. I congratulate the Bill’s promoter, the hon. Member for Na h-Eileanan an Iar (Angus Brendan MacNeil). I have been practising pronouncing his constituency name, but perhaps not for long enough. I, too, understand the difficulties of piloting private Members’ Bills...
Michael Tomlinson: I heard my right hon. Friend mention that point earlier, but I do not think anyone else has done so as yet. I would like to hear from the Minister whether my right hon. Friend’s interpretation is right. The Bill title includes the word “refugees”, so she has raised a perfectly sensible point and I look forward to hearing the answer in detail. I will, however, turn to my...
Michael Tomlinson: My right hon. Friend pulls a slight face, but I think there are legitimate concerns and I will address them as briefly as possible.
Michael Tomlinson: I understand the hon. Gentleman’s point, which is similar to that made by my right hon. Friend the Member for Broxtowe (Anna Soubry), which I answered. I still want to address the concern, because people have raised it with me.
Michael Tomlinson: I can give two answers to that question. First, no, I have not seen the report, but I did hear the hon. and learned Lady’s intervention—[Interruption.] I think it is worth my answering her question, and perhaps she can listen to my answer rather than heckling me at the outset.
Michael Tomlinson: Will the right hon. Lady give way?
Michael Tomlinson: I am grateful to the right hon. Lady; she is making a cogent argument, and that is what this place is for. She asks for evidence. My hon. Friend the Member for Somerton and Frome (David Warburton) mentioned the example of Germany in 2015 and the impact that the change of policy there had. Could she comment on that and say whether that is evidence one way or the other?
Michael Tomlinson: I am certain my hon. Friend has seen the paper “Smart Border 2.0”, which was prepared for the European Parliament’s constitutional affairs committee. It does not provide the whole solution, but it does show how technology will help to solve this problem. Does she agree that this will solve it and ensure the integrity of the United Kingdom?
Michael Tomlinson: I am pleased to be called to speak in this important debate, and it is a pleasure to follow so many powerful speeches by Conservative Members. Yet again, we heard it said from the Labour Front Bench that children in poverty will lose out in relation to free school meals. First, that is factually inaccurate; and, secondly, figures on poverty are often bandied around in this place, but it is...
Michael Tomlinson: To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, what plans the Church of England has to make its buildings available for broadcasting (a) wi-fi and (b) broadband signal to improve connectivity in rural areas; and if she will make a statement.
Michael Tomlinson: I pay tribute to my right hon. Friend for her part in securing the accord. On International Women’s Day, it seems appropriate to mention Lady St Mary church in Wareham, in my constituency, which is already installing telecommunications equipment in its—or her, I should say—tower. What more can my right hon. Friend do to encourage others to follow where Wareham and Dorset are...
Michael Tomlinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Independent review of Full-Time Social Action, published in January 2018, what assessment his Department has made of potential merits of youth full-time social action in relation to the National Citizen Service.
Michael Tomlinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when he plans to respond to the recommendations made by the Independent Review of Full-Time Social Action.
Michael Tomlinson: It is obvious that there will be concern about the draft from the EU of the withdrawal agreement. Can the Prime Minister assure me that when she responds, she will have uppermost in her mind the importance of both preserving and strengthening the Union of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland?
Michael Tomlinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans his Department has to ensure guidance and regulations on Relationships and Sex Education in secondary schools makes reference to marriage; and if he will make a statement.
Michael Tomlinson: Is it not right that, despite the concerns raised, individual electoral registration has both increased the roll and helped to reduce fraud?
Michael Tomlinson: The Secretary of State rightly stated the principle that those who benefit must contribute. Does he agree that the alternative is regressive and means a cap and a reduction in student numbers?
Michael Tomlinson: It is very depressing to see the hon. Lady in splendid isolation reading out a party political rant. It is tempting to step up to intervene. She and her party voted but yesterday against a £450 million increase for our police officers and yet she continues to read that out.
Michael Tomlinson: Will the hon. Lady give way?
Michael Tomlinson: Mid Dorset and North Poole.