Angela Eagle: The Minister is making a pretty poor job of defending the indefensible. Is it not the case that what she is setting out today is not only a huge hammer to crack a nut but actually, in disguise, a blatant attempt at voter suppression, by making it very difficult indeed for those who already have difficulties to vote? Many of those people come to visit me in my advice surgery because they...
Angela Eagle: It is now over 40 years since a heroine of mine, Barbara Castle, introduced the Equal Pay Act. She did so with great support from the labour and trade union movement, because the principle that women should be paid the same for doing the same job as men was believed then. Forty years later, we are really no nearer to achieving that pay equality. Although it is important that we have seen...
Angela Eagle: It’s the law.
Angela Eagle: Does my right hon. Friend share my astonishment that it took the Information Commissioner so long to get a warrant to search Cambridge Analytica’s premises, given that Facebook got in there in a minute and a half?
Angela Eagle: Given that the Prime Minister’s political secretary, Stephen Parkinson, is the person responsible for outing the Vote Leave whistleblower, using No. 10 paper and documents, what is she going to do? Prime Minister, you should sack him!
Angela Eagle: I thank the Minister for giving way. All of us who have an interest in this issue welcome his interest in the automotive plant, but we want a little more from him than that, since he is the Minister. Can he give us an answer on the issue of rate relief? Will the entire area be given the special status that my hon. Friend the Member for Ellesmere Port and Neston (Justin Madders) asked for?
Angela Eagle: Just say yes now; it does not take seven minutes to say yes.
Angela Eagle: Mr Rosindell—
Angela Eagle: I congratulate my hon. Friend on securing this important debate. Does he recognise that my constituency contains Vauxhall workers as well? Their economic future is reliant on the Government’s decisions in the Brexit negotiations, particularly given that they have decided to leave the single market, which puts those jobs at risk.
Angela Eagle: My right hon. Friend the Member for Barking (Dame Margaret Hodge) asked an extremely important question, to which she did not get an answer from the Minister. I wonder if we can try again. What changes are the Government planning to make to the due diligence for the golden visa, which establishes that someone must have £2 million they are investing in the UK before they get access to...
Angela Eagle: The Chancellor has been very upbeat today, but why is he so upbeat when the growth figures show that we have gone from being near the top of the G7 and the G20 growth lists to the bottom of both?
Angela Eagle: We all want self-employment to grow, but we also want to crack down on apparent self-employment, where people are forced to become self-employed by exploitative employers who then save on national insurance contributions while putting all the risk of that employment on often vulnerable individuals. What are the Government doing about that?
Angela Eagle: The Foreign Secretary has rightly said that trying to sort this out will involve getting the Russians to bring their clients, the Syrians, to the peace negotiation table, and we seem a very long way from that. Given its importance, will he tell the House whether the Prime Minister has talked to President Putin to express our strong wish in this country that that should happen?
Angela Eagle: Zero-hours contract carers get paid for face-to-face work, so they get paid for every 15-minute visit, but none of the travelling time in between. They often have fragmented contracts and have to be available for work throughout the seven days of the week, and they do not have proper time off. That is one example. Then we have couriers, who have to deliver more than 100 packages a day for 48p...
Angela Eagle: What are you going to do?
Angela Eagle: There is nobody more partisan than I am, but today is no time to be partisan. It is a time to be proud that we are all lucky enough to be in this place on such an auspicious day, when we welcome and celebrate 100 years of women’s enfranchisement. When I first came here, there were only 60 women MPs and today we celebrate comprising nearly a third of all Members, but it is still not...
Angela Eagle: But will the Secretary of State admit that he made a basic error by scrapping nurse bursaries, which has led to a 23% fall in the number of people applying to nurse courses? Why does he not look at that if he wants to widen the entrance into nursing?
Angela Eagle: I always listen to you.
Angela Eagle: The Fawcett Society recently published a report stating that violence and harassment against women was endemic in our country, with two thirds of women over 16 reporting that they have suffered sexual harassment. Does the Minister note that the employment contracts and notes for the women attending the event as hostesses asked them to be “tall, thin and pretty” and that they had...
Angela Eagle: The Minister speaks about the income tax threshold, but does he realise that most of the people we are talking about are on zero-hours contracts and really low pay, and they do not pay income tax? None of those tax giveaways have any effect on their weekly income.