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Resolved in the negative, and amendment disagreed to accordingly.

7.43 p.m.

[Amendment No. 180C, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 180, not moved.]

On Question, Commons Amendment No. 180, as amended, agreed to.

COMMONS AMENDMENT

181Clause 117, page 55, leave out lines 28 and 29 and insert ("omit "local education authority,".")

Baroness Blackstone: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 181.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 181.--(Baroness Blackstone.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

COMMONS AMENDMENT

182Clause 117, page 55, line 30, leave out from beginning to end of line 44 on page 56 and insert--
("(3) After subsection (1) of that section insert--
"(1A) The Secretary of State must issue guidance designed to secure that when sex education is given to registered pupils at maintained schools they are protected from teaching and materials which are inappropriate having regard to the age and the religious and cultural background of the pupils concerned.
(1B) In discharging their functions under subsection (1) governing bodies and head teachers must have regard to the Secretary of State's guidance.
(1C) Guidance under subsection (1A) must include guidance about any material which may be produced by NHS bodies for use for the purposes of sex education in schools.

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(1D) The Secretary of State may at any time revise his guidance under subsection (1A)."
(4) In subsection (2) of that section--
(a) for "subsection (1)" substitute "this section", and
(b) at the end insert "and "NHS body" has the same meaning as in section 22 of the National Health Service Act 1977."
(5) In section 404 (sex education: statements of policy) after subsection (1) insert--
"(1A) A statement under subsection (1) must include a statement of the effect of section 405."").

Baroness Blackstone: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 182. Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 182.--(Baroness Blackstone.)

AS AN AMENDMENT TO COMMONS AMENDMENT NO. 182

182ALine 6, after ("schools") insert--
("(a) they learn the nature of marriage and its importance for family life and the bringing up of children, and
(b)")

The Lord Bishop of Blackburn: My Lords, I beg to move Amendment No. 182A.

Moved, That Amendment No. 182A, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 182, be agreed to.--(The Lord Bishop of Blackburn.)

On Question, Amendment No. 182A agreed to.

[Amendment No. 182B, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 182, not moved.]

AS AN AMENDMENT TO COMMONS AMENDMENT NO. 182

182CLine 15, at beginning insert ("While adhering to the principles set out in subsection (1A),")

Lord Ackner: My Lords, I beg to move Amendment No. 182C as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 182.

This amendment comes as an anti-climax. It has nothing to do with the emotional subjects which have been recently canvassed. It concerns a simple drafting amendment which is designed to ensure that, although the Secretary of State under subsection (1D) may at any time revise his guidance under subsection (1A), he must do so while adhering to the principles set out in subsection (1A).

When I drafted this amendment, I thought the answer might well be that the Secretary of State was limited by subsection (1D) in whatever new amendments he wished to make. But I was not sure. I felt the matter would be easily cleared up by adding the simple 10 words in front of subsection (1D),


    "While adhering to the principles set out in subsection (1A)",

and that would deal with the matter. The noble Baroness, with characteristic courtesy only matched by her charm, kindly sent me a photostat letter on 18th July in fact telling me the answer was precisely that; that is, that subsection (1A) conditioned and limited what the Minister could do.

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I accept that that is arguable. But I wish to move my amendment purely on the basis that the whole of this ambiguity can be dealt with by using the less than 12 words which my amendment proposes; that is, the addition of the words,


    "While adhering to the principles set out in subsection (1A)",

and then there is no further problem.

Moved, That Amendment No. 182B, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 182, be agreed to.--(Lord Ackner.)

Baroness Blackstone: My Lords, I am a little surprised that the noble and learned Lord, Lord Ackner, did not speak to his amendment when we discussed all the amendments in this group. However, I shall be very happy to respond to it now.

Lord Ackner: My Lords, one of the arts of advocacy is to know when to remain silent. If I had got up when everyone was clamouring for the Minister to respond and said that I had a dull drafting amendment to put forward, I do not think that I would have been the flavour of the month.

Baroness Blackstone: My Lords, perhaps the noble and learned Lord is right in that respect. I have to say that I am a little daunted in the face of his expertise and experience in such matters when embarking on the explanation of what I believe to be the legal effect of the amendment. However, I hope that it will be helpful to the House if I try to clarify the position.

The new subsection (1A) sets out the requirement as to what the guidance issued by the Secretary of State must secure. Whenever the Secretary of State issues further guidance or amends it in any way, subsection (1A) is still the basis for the guidance. Therefore, it must still meet the requirements of subsection (1A). I hope that the noble and learned Lord will agree that the objective of his amendment has already been secured and that he will feel able to withdraw it.

Lord Ackner: My Lords, I do not look upon my amendment as being an earth-shattering one. I have the well-known case, in which I was one of the Law Lords involved, of Pepper v Hart on my side. As the Minister has said in terms that that which I was worried about is amply covered by the Bill, that seems to me to be all that I desired to achieve. I beg leave to withdraw my amendment.

Amendment No. 182C, as an amendment to Commons Amendment No. 182, by leave, withdrawn.

On Question, Motion, as amended, agreed to.

COMMONS AMENDMENT

183Before Clause 119, insert the following new clause--
WALES

(" .--(1) Where this Part of this Act confers a function on the Secretary of State (whether by amendment of another Act or otherwise)--

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(a) the function shall be exercisable in relation to Wales by the National Assembly for Wales, and
(b) for that purpose any reference to the Secretary of State shall be taken as a reference to the National Assembly.
(2) Where--
(a) this Part confers a function on the Secretary of State by amendment of an Act, and
(b) any functions of that Act have before the passing of this Act been transferred to the National Assembly by Order in Council under section 22 of the Government of Wales Act 1998 (transfer of functions),
the Order shall be treated for the purposes of any varying or revoking Order as having transferred to the National Assembly the function mentioned in paragraph (a).
(3) Subsection (1)(a) has effect subject to any Order in Council made by virtue of subsection (2).
(4) This section shall not apply in relation to--
(a) section 85, 87, 96, (Pensions) or (Commencement) of this Act,
(b) the amendment of section 1(3) of the Education (Fees and Awards) Act 1983 (fees at institutions) made by Schedule 8 to this Act,
(c) the amendment of section 26 of the Employment Act 1988 (status of trainees etc) made by Schedule 8 to this Act, or
(d) the amendment of section 19 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (discrimination in relation to goods, facilities and services) made by Schedule 8 to this Act.")

Baroness Farrington of Ribbleton: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 183. In moving this Motion, I shall speak also to Amendments Nos. 187 to 194.

The only new points of substance in this group are Amendments Nos. 183 and 191. The other amendments are consequential on those new clauses or on other territorially related amendments debated when we discussed earlier groups. I am happy to provide further detail on any of those amendments should any noble Lord require me to do so.

The two new clauses that Amendments Nos. 183 and 191 insert relate to devolution and commencement of provisions of the Bill. As they need to reflect the totality of the Bill, noble Lords will, I hope, understand that work on these two new clauses could only be finalised once all the other amendments to the Bill had been prepared.

Amendment No. 183 inserts a new clause that deals with devolution of provisions in Part V. Noble Lords will recall that the earlier parts of the Bill relate clearly and simply to England or Wales only. But Part V is rather more complex. The new clause therefore makes clear that, where non-reserved provisions in Part V confer functions upon the Secretary of State, those functions are exercisable in relation to Wales by the National Assembly for Wales. It covers both the new functions set to out in the Bill and the amendments by the Bill to existing legislation underpinning functions that were devolved to the National Assembly under the Government of Wales Act 1998.

Amendment No. 191 inserts a new clause covering commencement of the provisions of the Bill and, in particular, makes provision for the National Assembly to commence provisions that relate to Wales.

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Noble Lords will know that Bills, or parts of Bill, normally come into force in accordance with one or more commencement orders made by the relevant Secretary of State. The commencement clause of the Bill as it left this House--Clause 122--provided for the National Assembly to commence the Welsh Parts II and IV and for the Secretary of State, on top of the English Parts I and III, to commence the English-and-Welsh Part V. However, it is an agreed principle of the devolution arrangements that the National Assembly should commence legislation as far as it relates to Wales. In the context of this Bill, that has required an extremely complex analysis of Part V in relation to commencement. The new clause fully achieves that separation. Therefore, I commend it the House.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 183.--(Baroness Farrington of Ribbleton.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.


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