tv The Week in Parliament BBC News July 12, 2020 3:30pm-4:01pm BST
coronavirus cases. i think it is a great thing to wear a mask. i have never been against masks, but i do believe they have a time and a place. 73 people test positive for coronavirus at a farm in the english county of herefordshire. all workers at the farm have been asked to self—isolate. the uk government announces a £700 million plan for improvements to british border controls at the end of the brexit transition period. three generations of bollywood's bachchan family test positive for coronavirus. now on bbc news — a look back at the week in parliament.
hello there and welcome to the week in parliament. coming up in the next half hour: the chancellor unveils a multibillion—pound package of measures designed to help the uk recover from the coronavirus pandemic. if you're an employer and you bring someone back who was furloughed, we will pay you a £1000 bonus per employee. how can he ensure that that money will not just go to those employers who were already planning to bring people back into work? the foreign secretary announces a new sanctions regime for human rights abusers. we will not look the other way. you cannot set foot in this country, and we will seize your blood—drenched, ill—gotten gains if you try. also on this programme: the pm comes under fire after claims he tried to shift the blame for covid deaths onto care homes. northern ireland's deputy first minister is told to apologise for attending the funeral of a senior sinn fein figure, in apparent defiance of lockdown rules. and mps demand change after a review
into drugs and procedures that brought pain and suffering to thousands of women. my mum is one of the thousands of patients who had her life and her health ruined because of this quick fix with a bit of tea. but first, the chancellor has unveiled a multibillion—pound plan to try to keep workers in employment and create jobs for those that lose them. the package aims to encourage employers to take back staff currently on furlough, help younger people into work, and give a leg up to sectors such as hospitality, tourism, housing and the green economy. turning first to his furlough, orjob retention scheme, which has kept millions in theirjob so far, rishi sunak confirmed it would be wound down in the autumn. calling for endless extensions to the furlough is just as irresponsible as it would've been back injune to end the scheme overnight. we have to be honest. leaving the furlough scheme open forever gives people false hope that it will always be possible
to return to the jobs they had before. so instead, there'd be a new incentive for employers to keep staff. if you're an employer and you bring someone back who was furloughed and you continuously employ them through to january, we will pay you a £1000 bonus per employee. a policy he said that could cost £9 billion. and there'd be help for 16— to 2a—year—olds with a scheme called kickstart. the kickstart scheme will directly pay employers to create newjobs for any 16— to 24—year—old at risk of long—term unemployment. these will be decentjobs, with a minimum of 25 hours per week, paid at least the national minimum wage, and they will be good quality jobs with employers providing kickstarters with training and support to find a permanentjob. he confirmed a well—trailed green scheme with grants of up to £5000 to pay for insulation, and there'd be a temporary cut
in stamp duty. right now, there is no stamp duty on transactions below £125,000. today, lam increasing the threshold to £500,000. meaning, he said, that nine in ten transactions would pay no tax. he unveiled a vat cut in the tourism and hospitality sectors to 5% and there was one surprise item on the menu. for the month of august, we will give everyone in the country an "eat out to help out" discount. meals eaten at any participating business, monday to wednesday, will be 50% off, up to a maximum discount of £10 per head, for everyone. but the shadow chancellor reckoned some big decisions had been ducked. it should've been the day when the millions of british people worried about theirjobs and their future prospects had a load taken off their shoulders. it should've been the day when we
got the uk economy firing again. today, britain should've had a back—to—work budget. but instead, we got this summer statement with many of the big decisions put off until later, as the benches opposite know full well. she welcomed the bonus for employers to take furloughed staff back, but had reservations. how can he ensure that that money will not just go to those employers who were already planning to bring people back into work? and secondly, what will he do — what will he do for those firms that lack the cash flow to be able to operate even with that bonus? he will be acutely aware that interest rates will not stay low forever. and eventually, we will need to bring back our national debt under control in order to sustain a recovery and continue to create jobs and keep taxes low.
0ur young, bright, talented people are worth so much more than 25 hours a week on a minimum wage — a minimum wage, ratherthan a real living wage, with age discrimination baked in. for many of those young people, it will not be so much a kickstart as a kick in the teeth to be told to go to work for so little money. a lib dem turned to the home insulation plan. surely, mr speaker, it should be three times as big, lasting five years to get the real investment in our homes to decarbonise and get the green jobs for our young people and for every community across our country. the green measures announced today will cutjust 0.14% of uk emissions. not only that but the government is still committed to spending £27 billion on new roads. a dup mp put in a plea for help for the aerospace sector, vital to northern ireland's economy, but welcomed much of what had been announced. i am sure that the hospitality industry will welcome the measures which he has announced today, albeit they are quite time—limited. i think the clothes shop might
welcome this as well, because once we've eaten our way through half a month of half—price meals, we might all be visiting them. laughter. rishi sunak said perhaps as well as what he'd called his "eat out to help out" scheme, perhaps progress could be made on reopening gyms. well, prime minister's question time had come just before that statement from the chancellor. the labour leader, sir keir starmer, focused on what he said were the "huge mistakes" made by the government in dealing with the coronavirus in care homes in england, and what's been seen by some as an attempt to shift the blame onto care homes themselves. keir starmer repeatedly called on borisjohnson to apologise for a recent comment he'd made. on monday, when asked why care home deaths had been so high, the prime minister said — and i quote — "too many care homes did not really follow the procedures in the way that they could have." that has caused huge offence to front—line care workers. it has now been 48 hours.
will the prime minister apologise to care workers? i am grateful to the right honourable gentleman, and the last thing i wanted to do is to blame care workers for what's happened or for any of them to think that i was blaming them. because they have worked hard, incredibly hard, throughout this whole crisis looking after some of the most vulnerable people in our country and doing an outstanding job and, as he knows, tragically, 257 of them have lost their lives. and when it comes to taking blame, i take full responsibility for what has happened. but the one thing that nobody knew early on during this pandemic was that the virus was being passed asymptomatically from person to person in the way that it is, and that's why the guidance and the procedures changed and it's thanks to the hard work of care workers that we have now got incidents down in our care homes, outbreaks down in our care homes, to the lowest levels
since the crisis began. that's thanks to our care workers and i pay tribute to them. the labour leader turned to another health row. there are reports this morning that the government is to remove free hospital parking for nhs workers in england. the prime minister will know that this could cost hundreds of pounds a month for our nurses, our doctors, our carers and our support staff. we owe our nhs workers so much. we all clapped for them. we should be rewarding them, not making it more expensive to go to work. the prime minister must know this is wrong. will he reconsider and rule it out? mr speaker, the hospital car parks are free for nhs staff for this pandemic, they're free now, and we are going to get on with our manifesto commitment to make them free for patients who need them as well. and the house will know that was never the case under
the labour government, and neither for staff — neither for staff, nor for patients — nor for patients. may i suggest that he takes his latest bandwagon and park it free somewhere else ? can i associate myself with the concerns about tory hospital parking charges? the snp government abolished them in scotland 12 years ago. i would urge the tory government to do the same so that nhs workers and patients will not be penalised. well, the department of health in england later said that free parking will continue, only for key patient groups and nhs staff in certain circumstances as the pandemic eases. the uk is imposing sanctions on 49 people and organisations behind what ministers have called the most notorious human rights abuses of recent years. among those affected will be individuals implicated in the death of russian lawyer sergei magnitsky. now, he accused russian tax officials of defrauding a foreign investment firm he was advising.
the uk government says the 37—year—old died after being jailed, beaten and tortured. people on the list will have their uk assets frozen and be banned from entering the country. these sanctions are a forensics tool. they allow us to target perpetrators without punishing the wider people of the country that will be affected. the regulations will enable us to impose travel bans and asset freezes against those involved in serious human rights violations. this government and this house sends a very clear message on behalf of the british people that those with blood on their hands, the thugs of despots, the henchmen of dictators will not be free to waltz into this country to buy up property on the kings road, to do their christmas shopping in knightsbridge or, frankly, to siphon their dirty money through british banks or other financial institutions. he said the first designations would include those involved in the murders of sergei magnitsky and jamal khashoggi and those behind human rights abuses in myanmar and north korea, and he had a blunt message.
we will not look the other way. you cannot set foot in this country and we will seize your blood—drenched, ill—gotten gains if you try. his labour shadow welcomed the action against those involved in the murder ofjamal khashoggi. and can i gently say to him that although today is not the day for sparring across the dispatch box, that it would be welcome if it marked the start of a more consistent approach towards saudi arabia and, in particular, the arms sales from this country that are being used to harm innocent civilians in yemen. the snp picked up on dominic raab‘s promise that dictators would not be able to launder their blood money in the uk. progress on the ground does suggest that we do still have a lot more to do and i would refer to the open democracy report saying that many british companies cannot, or will not say who controls them. and from their own research, britain has long operated as a global hub for financial crime.
i think he is absolutely right to focus on the most clement cases in early designations today, but i hope that that does now free up the time and resource within the foreign office to turn their attentions towards china, and in particular those in hong kong, for whom sanctions of this sort would be the logical next step. dominic raab said these regulations were what he called a "first step". now, members of northern ireland's assembly have debated a motion criticising sinn fein ministers over their attendance at the funeral of senior ira figure bobby storey. the motion, drawn up by the dup, uup, alliance and the sdlp, called on the deputy first minister michelle o'neill and the finance minister conor murphy to apologise amid claims they broke coronavirus guidelines. critics have suggested social distancing was not maintained in crowds that lined the streets,
or at a requiem mass and that ms o'neill posed for a photograph at milltown cemetery, where a man put his arm around her shoulders. michelle o'neill has already apologised "for grieving families experiencing more hurt" but insisted she did not break the rules. more than 30 in attendance. hundreds more behind them in a procession. widespread advertising of an event. installing a public address system in a cemetery. a mass rally in a cemetery. posing for selfies. and yet, the deputy first minister continues to insist that her actions were within the regulations. i think that's for the birds. how many members here in the midst of this week's incessant media coverage — the tweets, the facebook statuses, the interviews — how many have genuinely given any thought
to the grieving family of bobby storey? one member said many families had buried their loved ones with no funeral. the sacrifices these families have had to make are immeasurable, and will stay with them for the rest of their lives. and mr speaker, they are doing this on the advice given to them by our executive every week. your arrogance and the way you've spoken to the people of northern ireland in this assembly is insulting. it has undermined the very health and safety of our nation, which is indeed the primary responsibility of leadership. you have failed. both you and the finance minister should have done the decent thing and resigned. i really don't know how the afternoon podium announcements will be accepted or believed again. how many times have each of us heard the words "why should i?" "why should i stick to the rules now?" with hand on heart, i can say that i will always apologise for any unintended hurt that was caused.
it was not, and it would never be, my intention to hurt anybody within society. i'm satisfied that i did act responsibly within the church, as part of a limited group as part of no more than 30 people as part of the cortege, and at the ceremony in milltown where i paid my respects. let me say very clearly — at no stage did i seek to give offence to anyone, including this chamber, norwould i ever seek to do so. and, at the end of that debate, mlas passed the motion calling on the deputy first minister, michelle o'neill, and the finance minister, conor murphy, to apologise. but it has no binding power to make them do so. children who see or hear the effects of domestic abuse will be treated as victims under the law in england and wales after mps agreed to changes to the domestic abuse bill. the commons also backed a government amendment to end the so called "rough sex defence", which a minister said was increasingly used by some men to avoid conviction for serious offences or to receive
a reduced sentence. we've been clear that there is no such defence to serious harm which results from rough sex. but there is a perception that such a defence exists, and that it is being used by men, and it is mostly men in these types of cases, to avoid convictions for serious offences, or to receive a reduction in any sentence where they are convicted. labour welcomed the change and remembered one of the victims, whose killer claimed she died after consensual rough sex. natalie connolly's name and story has rung out around this chamber, and been told in many newspapers, and the bravery of her family will see this law changed. today, i don't want to remember her for how she died, or to allow a violent man to get to say what her story was. i simply want to remember natalie, a brilliant, beautiful, bright mother, sister, daughter.
a woman who had a story all of her own, about the things she loved and cared for. jess phillips. the health minister has apologised after a review found women had their lives ruined because officials failed to hear their concerns about drugs and procedures that caused them or their babies harm. more than 700 women and their families shared harrowing details about vaginal mesh, pregnancy test primodos, and epilepsy drug sodium valproate. the review was carried out by lady cumberlege, who said she was shocked by the sheer scale and intensity of suffering. her report said too often worries and complaints were dismissed as "women's problems". i would like to make an apology to those people on behalf of the health care sector for the time the system took to listen and respond to those women, to their children, and to their families.
but there is one simple core theme that runs through all of this, and it goes to the heart of our work on patient safety. there are just two words — listening and humility. so much of the frustration and anger from patients and families stems from what they see as an unwillingness to listen. ignored, belittled, derided, gaslit. those who highlighted the harm from valproate and pelvic mesh have been called every name under the sun. mr deputy speaker, today they are one thing alone, proven right. that health system must do better to protect them because this reeks of misogyny from top to bottom, and ableism, as well. the former health secretary who commissioned the review backed calls for a patient safety commissioner. it's not a czar, it's not a quango, it's a person, who will listen to the voices of people whose voices
were not listened to. their fight must be our fight. justice is not served until the recommendations are fully implemented. i understand the desire to reflect on what is needed, but i feel some commitment to all the recommendations being implemented. one mp explained that her mother had suffered the pain of vaginal mesh. the review recommends setting up a network of specialist centres to provide comprehensive treatment, care and advice for those affected by implanted mesh, and this is to be welcomed. does the minister agree with me, however, that it would be a poor choice for any of the centres to be led by any of the surgeons who promoted or put mesh into women, after knowing it damaged them? sharon hodgson. the head of the metropolitan police has apologised to the olympic sprinter bianca williams after she and her partner were stopped in their car.
the pair have accused the metropolitan police of racial profiling and acting violently towards them. bianca williams and portuguese a00m record holder ricardo dos santos fear they were targeted because they are black and drive a mercedes. appearing before the home affairs committee, the head of the met was questioned about whether institutional racism remained a problem in herforce. it plays into a narrative that there is still differential policing going on, so how do you respond to that? you might specifically want to respond to this latest case as to whether you saw anything that troubled you, in the stopping of an olympic athlete, and whether you are satisfied that if it had been an olympic athlete like sharon davis, a white athlete, for example, that the same treatment would have been needed. with her and her white partner. that was all reviewed by two separate teams, and in terms of whether there was misconduct apparent, the view of my teams was that there
is no misconduct apparent. however, we have voluntarily referred to the iopc, in shorthand, because of the level of public concern. the iopc is the independent office for police complaints. are you now apologising to bianca williams and to her partner for what happened to them? i wasn't clear from what you said. i'm sorry if i wasn't clear, i thought i was clear. i apologised yesterday to ms williams and i apologise again for the distress the stop clearly caused her. i'm just interested in whether, not about the grounds for referring to the iopc, but you as senior officers have concerns about the incident when you reviewed it. but we do watch these videos, and yes, it has caused us concern. the overwhelming anxiety of communities, the feedback
they give about how they present of officers' actions, has of course caused us concern. helen ball. a former england women's footballer has told mps that targets are needed to increase black and minority ethnic inclusion at the top level of uk sport. speaking to the digital, culture, media and sport committee, eniola aluko said a target of 30% was something to aim for. she's england'sjoint tenth—most—capped international, and since retiring, has become the sporting director at aston villa. for me it's two—pronged, you have to encourage a pool of talent. i think we've lost a lot of black coaches from the game who just don't believe that the pathway‘s there. so that's that — we need to keep driving black players to get their qualifications, make sure they are top candidates when the opportunity comes. but on the flip side, we need to make sure that we are intentionally creating a pathway for those players— for those people to come through.
scotland's first minister has announced a further easing of lockdown restrictions. people will be allowed to meet up in extended groups outdoors, and with two other households indoors. couples who do not live together will no longer have to physically distance, and dates have been set for the reopening of bars, restaurants and the tourist industry. we should all savour our first indoor meetings and meals with friends, our first pint at the pub, or catch—up over coffee. many of us i know are looking forward to our first non—amateur haircut in many months. there will be other milestones and reunions that we will enjoy over the next few weeks. they have all been hard earned by each and every one of us. but, presenting officer, i have a duty to be crystal clear with the country that this is also a time of real danger. we must remember that covid, although at very low levels in scotland, is still out there. and everything we've learned about this still—new virus, about its infectiousness, its ability to kill and potential to do long—term damage to health,
should warn us that we mess with it at our peril. nicola sturgeon. meanwhile, in wales, the first minister told the welsh parliament that face masks are not a magic bullet for preventing coronavirus. he was responding to a call from a brexit party member for face masks to be made mandatory in public in wales. face masks aren't compulsory in wales, but are recommended in certain places, like on public transport. however, they must be used on public transport in england and scotland. the world health organization says there is emerging evidence that coronavirus can be spread by tiny particles suspended in the air. micro droplets are generated by breathing or talking. we also know that face coverings can help to catch micro droplets and prevent the spread of coronavirus. so why then is wales one of the only countries in the world that does not mandate the use of face coverings in some settings? wearing a face covering is not by itself a magic bullet that prevents people from contracting
or spreading coronavirus. and our own chief medical officer has always had an anxiety, and it's an anxiety i see being shared in other parts of the world, that when people wear a face covering, they act in ways they wouldn't if they weren't wearing it. and they act in more risky ways as well. mark drakeford. and that brings us to the end of this edition of the programme, but dojoin david cornock on bbc parliament on monday night at 11:00 for a round up of the day at westminster. but for now from me, alicia mccarthy, goodbye. it is a fine day for most of us but for some of us, the sunshine was this morning, for example, into northern ireland. what comes after that is cloud
and rain, either here or moving in and a similar picture in western scotland before the end of the day as well because low pressure is quite a long way as well you will find the centre of that, but weather fronts trailing from that is bringing in the cloud and the rain across northern ireland and into much of scotland, going deeper onto the evening, whereas for england and wales a dry day, the sun is certainly increasingly hazy in places, and much of that night dry although some outbreaks of rain de—pushing towards northern england and north wales, and it is a much milder night compared with the last few where temperatures, last night, for example, in parts of wales dropped down tojust one celsius. tomorrow a much cloudier day across the uk. northern ireland and scotland seeing some patchy rain around in the morning. for many of us, though, dry into the afternoon, some sunny spells around. cloud and some outbreaks of rain further south, across england and wales, not much at all towards south—east england, late afternoon or into the evening still 23 celsius but elsewhere it is not cold, but we're
talking high teens or 20 degrees and it will be a breezier day tomorrow. that weather front with cloud and patchy rain continues across south—east england overnight and into tuesday, may still have an area of cloud and some patchy rain first thing before that pulls away and what we are left behind that is quite a bit of cloud, some sunny spells coming through on tuesday, and a few showers around, perhaps another weather front approaching northern ireland, showers turning into another spell of persistent rain, especially the further west you are, and it will feel a bit cooler on tuesday as we turn the wind around to more of a north—westerly direction. this weather frontjust pushes on through overnight and into wednesday, not a huge amount of rain on it, and behind that for the rest of the week, high pressure is building back in. there will be a lot of cloud, there may be the odd shower, just a few sunny spells, but what many of us will notice during the second—half of the week is those temperatures creeping up a few degrees and for some parts of england in particular,
this is bbc news. the headlines at 11... 73 people test positive for coronavirus at a farm in herefordshire. all workers at the farm have been asked to self—isolate. people asked to self—isolate. are staying on—site and that's people are staying on—site and that's very important, we have full cooperation in that situation. we are providing food because obviously people cannot go off—site to fetch that. and making sure, looking after the of people. to mask or not to mask? senior uk minister michael gove says face coverings shouldn't be mandatory in england,but worn out of consideration for others. on the whole, my view is that it's always better to trust people's sommon sense, to give them a clear sense of what is wise and i think that individuals and businesses