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  Recent questions and speeches in Parliament

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This page contains a collection of questions, speeches and Parliamentary motions by George Howarth during 2009. To see more recent activity, click here.

Mersey MPs demand fairer pension deal for Gurkhas
12 Dec 09
George leads new campaign to win a fair deal for Gurkhas. Read the full story in the Liverpool Echo and the Early Day Motion tabled by George in Parliament.

New proposals to regenerate Kirkby
8 Dec 09
George asks the Communities Secretary if he will welcome a new proposal to regenerate Kirkby. See the Hansard record of the debate in Parliament the the Communities Secretary's written response.

Sir Thomas Legg confirms there are no issues with George's expenses
30 Nov 09
Sir Thomas Legg has confirmed that he has "no issues" with George's expenditure claims. This follows his review of MPs' expenditure and his interim letter of 12 October stating that he had no concerns about George's expenses and did not require him to submit any further evidence. Read the latest letter from Sir Thomas here.

The impact of the decision not to permit Kirkby's regeneration proposals.
27 Nov 09
George expresses astonishment that the Communities Secretary has "turned down £400 million of private sector investment in Kirkby" and calls on the Government to "consider whether a new application, perhaps slightly scaled down, can be fast-tracked and put before the Secretary of State, so that the regeneration of Kirkby and the necessary number of jobs can be delivered". Read his full speech in Hansard as well as coverage in the Daily Post and Liverpool Echo.

Knowsley Council's apprentice training scheme

11 Nov 09
George secures a Ministerial visit to Knowsley "to look at the possible lessons that can be learned from the excellent apprenticeship scheme". Read the discussion in Hansard

Justice for thalidomide survivors
5 Nov 09
George calls on the Government to offer support to thalidomide survivors who as they approach their 40s and 50s are facing a new range of challenging medical conditions. Read the debate in Hansard.

Young offenders and the impact of prison
2 Oct 09
George challanges the Lib Dem Home Affairs spokesperson, to "accept that while a young person is in prison—and the offences for which they are imprisoned are usually serious—they will not, at least, be available to reoffend in the communities from which they come?" Read the debate in Hansard

Cannabis and young people

2 Nov 09
George asks the Home Secretary if, he had "taken Professor Nutt’s advice and lowered the categorisation of cannabis, and if as a result more young people had started to use it, would not that have been irresponsible?" Read the debate in Hansard

Territoritorial army funding
26 Oct 09
Does the Minister accept that the announcement of a £20 million reduction that was made has already caused a great deal of demoralisation within the TA? Does he further accept that today’s announcement, although welcome, does not go far enough to overcome that demoralisation? Read the debate in Hansard

Death of Christopher Traynor
13 Oct 09
George calls on the Government to "encourage the French to co-operate fully with Merseyside police to see what help they can give" so that the death of Christopher Traynor can be properly investigated. Read the debate in Hansard here and a related article in the Liverpool Echo here.

Re-offending rates
9 Sep 09
What percentage of offenders (a) released from prison, (b) under probation supervision without programmes and (c) under probation supervision with programmes were reconvicted within two years in the last five years? Read the response from the Justice Department here.

Jaguar Land Rover at Halewood

15 Jul 09
George asks the Prime Minister for support to secure the long-term future of Jaguar Land Rover at Halewood. Read the Prime Minister's response here.

Apprenticeships
15 Jul 09
George leads a debate on apprenticeships, highlighting the pioneering work of Knowsley Council. Read the debate in Hansard here.

Alternatives to custody

16 Jun 09
George calls for a review of alternatives to custody including the effectiveness of the probation service. Read his full question and the Justice Secretary's response here.

Question to the Prime Minister about Gurkhas

20 May 09
"May I associate myself with my right hon. Friend’s remarks about those brave servicemen and women who have died in the cause of Afghanistan? A few weeks ago, the House debated the issue of the Gurkhas. Is my right hon. Friend in a position to give us any indication of what progress has been made on it?". Read the Prime Minister's response in Hansard here.

Expenses

19 May 09
George publishes his Parliamentary expenses here.

Intelligence and security committee report
7 May 09
During a debate on the Intelligence and Security Committee's annual report, George made a substantial contribution covering oversight of security agencies' finances and cooperation with the flow of informatinon between UK and US intelligence agencies. Read his full contribution here.

Swine flu
7 May 09
During a debate on swine flu, George sought assurances that "those who might be more vulnerable to a second wave, such as pensioners, the very young and those whose medical condition would make the impact of the flu worse, are under consideration by the Department, and that plans will be brought forward in due course to deal with those particular problems?". Read the Secretary of State for Health's response here.

Gurkha settlement rights

29 Apr 09
George called for the Government to adopt a fairer approach to former Gurkhas who want to settle in the UK. You can read his contribution in Hansard here. He also signed an Early Day Motion (EDM) here and tabled an amendment in a Commons debate on the subject. His amendment was not called by the Speaker so it did not get debated, but if it had been voted through it would have led to the motion below:

That this House believes that the new guidelines announced by the Home Office for the settlement of former Gurkha soldiers are unnecessarily restrictive, morally wrong and offensive to those dedicated Gurkha soldiers who are denied the opportunity to serve for the twenty year minimum period afforded to those of the rank of Warrant Officer and above; notes that more Gurkhas have laid down their lives for the United Kingdom than are estimated to want to live in the country; supports the decision of the Home Affairs Select Committee to call Ministers from the Home Office and Ministry of Defence to examine the consequences of this decision and to ascertain how many former Gurkhas would qualify for settlement and how many of the approximately 1,500 Gurkhas, including Falklands veterans, currently awaiting the outcome of their appeals would face deportation under the new guidelines; recognises the contribution the Gurkhas have made to the safety and freedom of the United Kingdom for the past 200 years; notes that more Gurkhas have laid down their lives for the United Kingdom than are estimated to want to live here; believes that Gurkhas who retired before 1997 should be treated fairly and in the same way as those who have retired since; is concerned that the Government’s new guidelines will permit only a small minority of Gurkhas and their families to settle whilst preventing the vast majority; further believes that people who are prepared to fight and die for the United Kingdom should be entitled to live here; and calls upon the Government to withdraw these guidelines and bring forward new and more equitable guidelines.

In the end, the Government proposed a fairer system which the Home Secretary outlined in her letter to Martin Salter MP who tabled the EDM mentioned above.

Child pornography

17 Mar 09
Asking the Justice Minister about sentences imposed on those convicted of child pornography. Read the debate in Hansard here.

Apprenticeships

12 Mar 09
George congratulates "Councillor Ron Round, the leader of Knowsley council, who has gone out to promote apprenticeships across all sectors in the area" and last year "succeeded in getting more than 100 apprentices placed into employment across the borough". Read the report in Hansard here.

Coroners and Justice Bill standing committee

As Bills pass through Parliament on their way to becoming law, they are scrutinised in detail by "standing committees". As part of this evidence is also taken from expert witnesses on the measures proposed in the Bill. The Coroners and Justice Bill began its standing committee stage in the House of Commons on 3 February 2009. You can view the comments and questions made by George here:
- 10 Mar 09 - on the work of the sentencing commission and flexibility in sentencing
- 9 Mar 09 - about the definition of child pornography
- 5 Mar 09 - on witness protection
- 26 Feb 09 – on the role of the Intelligence and Security Committee
- 10 Feb 09 – about arrangements for inquests following disasters such as Hillsborough
- 5 Feb 09 – on the 'departure test' that allows those passing sentences to depart from sentencing guidelines
- 3 Feb 09 – about inquests where there have been multiple deaths in one incident

Sentencing reform
26 Jan 09
George, who served on the Sentencing Working Group, chaired by Lord Justice Gage, makes a major speech as a key Government Bill to reform sentencing is debated in the House of Commons. Read the full debate here.

DHL depot should stay in Aintree
12 Jan 09
George tables a Parliamentary motion calling on DHL to reconsider its proposed closure of its Aintree depot that would lead to 42 job losses. Read the full motion here.

2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011

To search Hansard for more examples of George speaking in Parliament, click here. These current Hansard pages cover the period from 2005 to the present day

To search Hansard's archives to see George's speeches and questions in Parliament since his election, click here.

Early Day Motions
As well as making speeches and asking questions in Parliament, you can view the Early Day Motions (EDMs) George has signed here. EDMs draw attention to specific events or campaigns, and demonstrate parliamentary support for a particular cause or point of view. You can find out more from the House of Commons factsheet.
 


 

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©2007-15 Rt Hon George Howarth, Labour MP for Knowsley