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tv   Thursday in Parliament  BBC News  January 17, 2020 2:30am-3:00am GMT

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the world has reached the point of climate change crisis, sir david attenborough has told the bbc. he said countries had been dodging their commitments for too long. sir david added that it is palpable nonsense for politicians to suggest the australian fires are nothing to do with global warming. the impeachment of donald] trump has formally begun in the us senate, with democrats setting out nine pages of allegations against him. the president is accused of violating the constitution by pressing ukraine to investigate a political rival. opening statements are due to take place on tuesday. prince harry has appeared at his first royal engagement since he and his wife meghan announced they would be stepping back from their roles as senior royals. the prince was at buckingham palace to host the draw for next year's rugby league world cup. now on bbc news,
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thursday in parliament. welcome to thursday in parliament. a new dealfor northern ireland but mps say, "show us the money!" what we cannot now do is see this process frustrated by the penny pinching attitude by the chancellor. the northern ireland secretary hails the extra cash. this is the best financial deal of any northern ireland talk settlement, £2 billion. also in this programme, will big ben long for brexit? spoiler alert... there has been a suggestion
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that the cost of striking the bell could be covered by donations from the public. this would be an unprecedented approach. all that to come and more. but first, the northern ireland executive is back in business. devolution has been restored after three years of deadlock. on monday, the prime minister visited stormont to mark the return of power—sharing after a deal that ended the stand—off between the dup and sinn fein. but, when the northern ireland secretary made a statement to mps, he faced questions about the details of the deal, its funding, and whether it would last. rejecting allegations of penny—pinching, he defended the settlement, but also warned the local parties about the stringent conditions attached to the financial package. we will be providing the restored executive with a £2 billion financial package that delivers for the people of northern ireland and supports this deal. the uk government financial commitment represents the biggest
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injection of new money in a northern ireland talks deal in well over a decade. this funding has already allowed the executive this morning to pledge to deliver pay parity for nurses in northern ireland, the first such intervention in the devolved area, and which has ended a nurses strike. but his labour shadow said both the first minister and deputy first minister had written to say the funding was not adequate. this is a really important moment in the history of our two islands. it really is important. the restoration of the executive, the secretary of state tells us, is something he deserves enormous credit for. what we cannot now do is see this process frustrated by the penny—pinching attitude by the chancellor and the prime minister who will not accept the consequences. secretary of state, i have to say directly to you, you've got to do better, you've got to go back to other government ministers and say, we now need to see the resources made available.
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this is the best financial deal of any northern ireland talk settlement, £2 billion. the right honourable gentleman refers to a letter that has been written by the two first ministers. i've seen the letter and i've seen the reply, and that reply points out that this is an injection for this talks process, i billion of new money, i billion of funding up front, a guarantee. we then have the annual budget, in march, uk budget, and we have a dealfor brexit. so the key task for this executive now is to focus on its priorities. mr speaker, the government is committed to no hard border between northern ireland and the republic of ireland. it also says in this document, this plan that has been put forward in the annex, that the uk government will legislate to guarantee
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unfettered access to northern ireland's businesses to the whole of the uk internal market. on the assumption that that unfettered access is as unfettered as it is today, what are the implications of these commitments for the future trade deal between the uk and the european union? this deal above all is guaranteeing the executive a seat at the table as we implement our brexit deal. it also underscores our commitment to ensuring in law unfettered access of goods from ni to gb. and it also reconfirms the fact that all arrangements for northern ireland in our brexit deal are subject to the consent of the northern ireland assembly. in the agreement and in the secretary of state's statement today, the uk government commits to a new deal for northern ireland in the context of it being dragged out of the eu against its will. so i wonder if the secretary of state is able to detail for the house now a bit more fully what this new deal will involve?
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when the executive comes forward with its programme for government, as it works through the course of the coming months, we need to stand ready to assist them. the executive, though, needs to take a different approach than it has historically. it needs to reform. we're setting up a board, as i said, we're looking at how we encourage greater productivity. i was disappointed to hear this week that rates have been ruled out, water rates have been ruled out. the executive needs to look at his own revenue raising measures, as well as coming to the uk exchequerfor cash. the dup welcomed the deal, but questioned their finances. the funding issue has already been raised by the opposition frontbench, and we are concerned that if this deal is to work and devolution is to be effective in northern ireland, then the resources need to be there in order to ensure sustainability. julia smith said northern ireland received 20% more funding than the rest of the uk,
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but another party now in government in belfast had questions too. many people are sceptical that the reforms do not go far enough, but nonetheless are prepared to give it a go. can you give us a reassurance that if things do not work out correctly the government will look at this again and also to recognise that our society transforms most people there are no longer identifies as either unionist or nationalist, and that has to be recognised in the institutions? mps wanted to know how the settlement would be made sustainable. now that we have the executive re—established, it is important it remains there, that it continues to serve the people of northern ireland, that we have that local decision making. can my right honourable friend comment on the steps that are being taken and will be taken in the future to ensure that the executive, that the devolved government in northern ireland, remains, and remains serving its people ? by way of analogy, if parties do not turn up to this house, or if people resign or if there is a disagreement,
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we do not collapse parliament. so will he look at how it might be in northern ireland that changes are introduced, working with local parties, to ensure that regardless of what agreements may be, we cannot see the institutions collapse again? there are a series of commitments, mr speaker, in this deal agreed by the parties which will require certain bits of legislation in the assembly that will ensure, in my view, that we should never have to have the loss of the assembly and the executive as we have had in the last three years again. julian smith. now for culture questions, without the culture secretary. it's not unheard of for a secretary of state to miss his or her departmental question time, but rarely is it because the minister is no longer actually a member of the commons? nicky morgan is the culture secretary, but she stood down at the last election as mp for loughborough. she is now lady morgan of cotes, and she will carry out her role from the house of lords. her absence was noted. can i also use this opportunity
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to congratulate my former right honourable friend for loughborough for her elevation to the other place? we continue to work — can i say we do continue to work very closely. she is still the secretary of state, and it's good to see her watching over us with a beady eye here this morning. lady morgan was sitting in the gallery above the chamber. could the minister confirm that press reports are correct and the government will imminently respond to the online harms white paper, and we can expect to see a government bill in this parliament as well? i would be happy to accept the answer at the box, or a positive hand gesture in the gallery. you will have to settle for an answer from the box. we are committed to making the uk the safest place to be online, and the best digital economy in the world. as the prime minister said,
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we are developing proposals at pace and we will bring forward a bill as soon as possible. on thursday, the head of mental health services in england wrote to five major gambling companies demanding urgent action on tackling gambling addiction. my father used to enjoy a weekly ten—bob yankee down at the bookies, but he would have been appalled at the sheer volume of advertising, the dodgy practices that are going on in picking on vulnerable people in relation to gambling. yet the government seems to be following rather than leading events, with today's intervention from the nhs leadership to add to that. when is the government actually going to introduce a new gambling bill that is so long overdue? can he tell us right now? i'm slightly surprised by the tone of the honourable gentleman's question. the government has been taking
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steady steps to increase protections to make sure that people can gamble safely, unlike, actually, previous labour administrations which oversaw huge liberalisation of gambling. as he is i'm sure well aware, as we committed to in our manifesto, we will be launching a review of the gambling act, and work is going on right now to identify the scope and timeframe of that review. the snp wanted to ask about president trump's threats to attack iran's cultural sites. any attack on one of these sites is an attack on our shared global history, but when we have president trump tweeting one thing and his advisers saying the opposite, can we really trust the assurances that these sites will not be targeted in conflict? the targeting of cultural sites is in contravention of several
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international conventions to which the us is party, including the world heritage convention and the 1954 hague convention. the foreign secretary was very clear that we expect these conventions to be adhered to. i am sure we are all very comforted to know that the secretary of state is watching us from the gallery. but next time the minister of state sees the secretary of state, now elevated to the lords and beyond the reach of elected members down here, to follow on from the questions from my colleagues, will he ask if she has had a firm guarantee from president trump that he has withdrawn this threat? has he withdrew under threat? it's not enough to condemn. has he withdrawn that threat? well, this feels slightly repetitive in the questions from the scottish national party. i think the united states can speak for themselves on their policy towards heritage sites, but as i have said,
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the foreign secretary was very clear that we expect the international conventions to be adhered to. but there were still rumblings about the fact that mps would not be able to question the secretary of state directly. later, the leader of the commons was taken to task on the matter. it's not common but the secretary of state at departmental questions to be in a position where she can be seen but not heard. while the select committees will be able to question her, i wonder if his office has given consideration as to what to do in a situation like this, whether it would be possible to have a special session, and if you would allow time for the house to debate that to see if that is an innovation you would support. thank you, mr speaker. there was a report by the procedure committee on this matter a few years ago. it is perfectly normal to have departmental ministers in the house of lords. it is something that both houses have coped with over many centuries. i think in terms of reforming any procedures, it's a matter for the procedure committee to look into again.
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but there are many means of holding ministers in the government to account, in this house — yes, absolutely in this house. you watching thursday in parliament. don't be embarrassed. if you miss our daily round—up, you can always catch up on the day in parliament on the bbc iplayer. labour has challenged the government over social care, asking when ministers' plans for the future of services for the elderly and other groups will actually be unveiled. boris johnson promised before, during and after the election to solve the problems in social care. debating what the queen's speech had to say about health and social care services in england, the shadow health secretary said the prime minister claimed to want consensus. the labour party has proposed free personal care. we have a version of this in scotland and a similar version
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northern ireland. a version of wales. the house of lords committee which concludes thatcherites along with the former minister, propose free social care. there is a consensus, as the secretary of state and prime minister who stand outside that political consensus. if he wants to engage with us on that basis, then my honourable friend the member is happy to engage the secretary of state on that basis but there's already a political consensus. i'm very grateful and on that point ijust wanted to ask him, given that his party is undergoing a leadership election, and that will clearly mean — no, i'm trying to say this helpfully. it was really whether the secretary of state has made a commitment to start the process for cross party talks in the next 100 days. just before that leadership election is concluded. so my serious point is, if we wish to engage in a cross—party basis with each implement
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the deal proposes is my right honourable friends that were on the basis of the honourable gentleman has just said, is he in a position to start that engagement with the support of his current party leader, so that we can make progress urgently, because the social care problems in the country are not going to wait, frankly, for another leader of the opposition, and that's a serious cross party point. of course we are very happy to engage. my honourable friend who sits shadow cabinet is happy to sit down with ministers at any point. when the health secretary said that he too hoped a broad consensus can be reached, he was interrupted. he will know i've raised with him on the october queen's speech would be willing to sit down and talk about this, three months have been lost with nothing happening, will be here for the prime minister is something will happen in this parliament. what does it use this chance
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to say where is the plan? where is his plan, when is he going to produce it? well, my honourable friend the care minister wrote to the honourable lady wrote to the lady after the election and we are up for this conversation, as the prime minister has been absolutely clear. matt hancock was questioned by tory mp, who was also nhs hospital doctor. we have a duty in this parliament to resolve that issue that for many decades now has been in the long grass. will my honourable friend also agreed that it's notjust about funding but about what service we want to deliver for people, and the discussions about the future of social care should also be about this delivery and actually
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putting together, notjust funding models but a model of delivery that is driven by integration with the health service and the social care services which we often talk about but has not been delivered for patients even on the ground. putting social care on a sustainable footing where everyone is treated with dignity and respect is one of the biggest challenges we face as a society. and the prime minister has said that he will bring, that we will bring forward a plan for social care this year. and the point that he raised is very, very fortunate. matt hancock promising a social care plan this year. the attorney general came to answer questions for the first time since the election and was tackled over the removal in the eu withdrawal bill of a protection to allow the company child migrants in the eu to come to the uk and be reunited with their families here after brexit.
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the government insists it does not want to tie its hands in brexit negotiations, and that he will be progress on the company children. the s&p among others has been campaigning hard on this. the party reminded jeffrey cox what he wants that on the issue. it was from the back benches in february 2017 that he made what i thought was a superb speech of the human rights asylum seeking company children, calling on the government to make notjust lip service on the threats but make them practical. why notjust actually decide to can you to accept unaccompanied children within the members here. why is the government seeking to repeal even the very modest obligations to negotiate the rights under the withdrawal act of 2018? mr speaker, we are not seeking to repeal it.
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we are seeking removing the statutory requirement to negotiate it. the government wrote in october last year seeking commencement of negotiation on family reunification that would have this support and its fundamental and the government is committed that vulnerable, unaccompanied children must be able to reunite with their family members in this country. now, according to the anti—discrimination campaign, there was a 43% increase in racist abuse in english football last season. in the lords and ministers that racism had no place in football or society. and we must confront this vile behaviour. peers were told at this time last year it led to a plan. the authorities set out their list of actions to tackle discrimination including increasing the minimum sanctions for discriminatory behaviour, introduce stronger education measures, and improved reporting systems, and i met with them yesterday and discussed their action on discrimination.
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and while progress is definitely being made, there's obviously more to do and we will be calling on all the football authorities again for further update shortly. thank you, minister, for that response. could, however, government give us an undertaking that they will undertake some of the activities that the football association brought forward in their snappily titled ‘mandatory education programme offer' is made particularly making sure that every fad knows what constitutes racism and also the effect that has not only on players but also on fellow fans? the tackling on racial abuse in the premiership and disparities within the premier league is moving painfully slow. for example, one—third of the premiership footballers are non—white. in old money, black. yet we only have one black manager.
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from the wolverhampton wanderers. i'm not sure if there's any wolverhampton fans, sorry about last night. i'm not sure if there's any assistant coaches of colour, chief executives or board members. would the minister pledge with me to make convene a meeting with the necessary actors to include the police and encourage and where possible demand a comprehensive programme to tackle the scourge of racism or close the racial disparities. my lords, the beautiful game must confront and deal with this ugly racism. lady baron felt that she felt more confident now that progress is being made, but a suggestion was made it was time to review a 20—year—old law aimed at stepping out violence and racism around football.
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would the minister agree that given the shocking123% rise in racist incidents since 2016, now might be the time to consider increasing penalties and strengthening powers to tackle this appalling problem at our football grounds? lady baron said the government would look at the legislation but had to decide precisely what it was examining. is legislation fit for purpose and is it being a primitive properly, and if it's not fit for purpose do we need to amend date? my honourable friend to the minister for support is seeking a meeting with the home secretary to discuss just this. a former international athlete when the problems are notjust inside football grounds but also increasingly on social media. has her majesty's government considered how the online harms a consultation paper could be looked at for this abuse? before i reply to the noble lady's question i would hope
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the house would want, congratulate her, but she is wincing, congratulating her on her lifetime achievement award from bbc sports personality of the year. the noble lady is absolutely right, and again talking yesterday with the fa, it is clearly that players are feeling racism when they turn on their phones as well as on the field, and it is very much part of what we will be considering in the online harms bill. if there were more new faces in the house of lords we have the former ambassador to the united states. he resigned last year after he had been critical
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he was made a peer in theresa may's resignation honours list. i, lord derek, whereby almighty god will bear true just to have her majesty queen elizabeth, her heirs and successors according to law so help me god. and finally, an update on what some people are calling inevitably ‘bong gate‘. earlier this week the prime minister floated the idea of crowdfunding the half—million pounds it would cost to pay for the big ben bell to chime as we leave the eu at the end of this month. not everyone thinks it's a great idea. a statement from the commons authorities. is been a suggestion that the cost of striking the bell could be covered by donations made by the public. this would be an unprecedented approach. the house of commons has well—established means of voting through the expenditure required to allow it to function, and to preserve its constitutional position in relation to government. any novel form of funding would be consistent with principles of propriety and proper oversight
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of public expenditure. it seems to me with regard to big ben bongs, the method of people wish to pay for things that i think that should be considered as part of their public spiritedness rather than feeling that everything should always follow me the hard—pressed taxpayer, but then as a conservative, i don't think should always fall on hard—pressed taxpayers if that can be avoided. jacob reece—smog. asked whether the parameter was prepared to bug a bob for the big bend bongs, don't hold your breath on that one. that was thursday pn parliament, thank you for watching i do hope you can join me for the tape type of alert for the week in parliament and we will be talking about the uk's newest mvp about her brief stay for the european parliament. until then, bye for now.
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hello there. after all the rough weather, the wet and windy weather we've had to contend with this week, you may be pleased to hear that things are about to calm down. but it's not all plain sailing just yet. this is the earlier satellite picture — this stripe of cloud has been bringing outbreaks of rain. there are shower clouds following on behind and this hook of the cloud is the centre of an area of low pressure bringing a swathe of very strong winds still across the far north and west of scotland through the first part of friday. starting the day generally between 4—9 degrees. through the day, a couple of clutches of showers to contain with, one moving across the midlands, wales and southern england and some heavy with hail and thunder mixing in and this band of showers drifting across scotland and northern ireland will contain snow over high ground in scotland, say, above 300m, more showers in the far north and staying windy in northern scotland.
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we in northern scotland. will see further showers and further we will see further showers and further south it is drier and clear spells and it will be a cold night, temperatures widely close to freezing in a few places. that leads us freezing in a few places. that leads us into the spell of karma weather, dry and brighter weather for the weekend, overnight frost but look at the pressure trough, the areas of dominance have been muscled out by this big area of pressure, which is really going to settle things down through the weekend, meaning a lot of dry weather out there with sunshine after the cold start on saturday but some showers coming in on scotland, fairly windy through the day. top temperatures down on saturday down between 6—9d but more sunshine, will not be as windy but it may feels pleasant. saturday into sunday, another cold one, starting with the frost on sunday morning,
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again, temperatures at freezing or below, some areas may get down to minus four degrees but after that cold start, a fine day with long spells of sunshine, some cloud into north—west of scotland, rain may be for the northern isles. temperatures generally between 6—9d. and another chilly night, particularly in the south and a greater chance of fog taking us into monday morning.
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welcome to bbc news, i'm mike embley. our top stories: the moment of crisis has come — a grim warning from one of the world's most influential environmentalists. as australia burns, we are out on patrol with one team trying to contain the flames in new south wales. a moment in history as donald trump's impeachment trial gets under way in the senate. the president isn't impressed by any of it. china reports its weakest annual growth in three decades, amid a trade war and domestic pressures. back to work after the big split announcement. could it be prince harry's final royal appearance?

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