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("(5A) The fifth condition is that A is the parent, adoptive parent, step-parent, former step-parent, grandparent, sibling, half-sibling or adoptive sibling of B.").

The noble Baroness said: This is an important amendment in a completely different group to the amendment we have just been discussing. We were discussing amendments tabled as a result of the report by Sir Ronald Waterhouse into the North Wales case.

Earl Russell: Perhaps I can have some clarification from the noble Baroness. Is she speaking to Amendment No. 24?

Baroness Young: That is correct.

Earl Russell: I thought Amendment No. 24 was consequential on Amendment No. 20, which has just been defeated.

Baroness Young: Perhaps I can have some clarification. As I understand it, Amendment No. 20 was defeated, but Amendment No. 24 takes a completely new point.

Lord Carter: As a result of the Division on Amendment No. 20, Amendment No. 24 is consequential.

Lord Bach: When, after the Dinner break, we discussed which amendments were consequential and which were not, the noble Earl, Lord Russell, said that if Amendment No. 20 were passed one of the numbered "fifth" conditions could be moved. Amendment No. 20 would be a paving amendment to one of those. However, any mention of a fifth condition would be inappropriate because in defeating Amendment No. 20 the Committee has agreed that there shall be only four conditions.

Baroness Blatch: Perhaps I may ask two questions. First, given that there is a rumour to the contrary, will the noble and learned Lord say whether it is intended that the Bill shall receive a Report stage? Secondly, the noble Lord, Lord Bach, will know that the fifth condition proposed in Amendment No. 20 is a technicality. One cannot say "sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth" because the technicality is that there shall be a fifth condition. Therefore, the amendments would have been grouped and it is not right to say that only one would have been acceptable.

Perhaps I may also ask for advice from the Clerk. I understand that as regards a fifth condition it would not be appropriate tonight to press Amendment

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No. 24, but if the parent, adoptive parent and so forth became part of the relevant category, would it be necessary for the Government to find the appropriate place for it in the Bill?

Lord Williams of Mostyn: The future conduct of the Bill is entirely a matter for the business managers and not for me. I believe that the advice given by my noble friend Lord Bach is correct.

Lord Carlisle of Bucklow: I rise with the intention of being helpful but I doubt whether I shall succeed. If the argument is that we cannot proceed with further amendments which add a fifth condition because the amendment which would allow that has been defeated, these matters could be aired on the Question whether the clause shall stand part of the Bill and the Government would have an opportunity to consider them before the Report stage.

Lord Williams of Mostyn: The noble Lord has succeeded in being helpful. I believe that he is right.

Baroness Young: Perhaps I may return to Amendment No. 24. It is a matter which we shall raise at the Report stage and I want to give notice of that. I am astonished that the Government Front Bench and those on the Benches behind them do not see the issue as being serious. Incidentally, it was raised in their White Paper, Setting the Boundaries, and it was recommended that it should become law.

I shall not press the case because I take the point that the possibility of a fifth condition has been defeated but I want to make it clear that we shall return to the matter on Report.

[Amendment No. 24 not moved.]

Baroness Young had given notice of her intention to move Amendment No. 25:

    Page 4, line 16, at end insert--

("(5A) The fifth condition is that A is the uncle or aunt of B.").

The noble Baroness said: The same applies to Amendment No. 25. We shall bring the matter back on Report.

[Amendment No. 25 not moved.]

Baroness Young had given notice of her intention to move Amendment No. 26:

    Page 4, line 16, at end insert--

("(5A) The fifth condition is that A looks after persons under 18 who are members of a church or religious organisation and B is a member of that church or religious organisation.").

The noble Baroness said: This amendment covers Church or religious organisations and it, too, must be brought back on Report.

[Amendment No. 26 not moved.]

[Amendment No. 27 not moved.]

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Baroness Young had given notice of her intention to move Amendment No. 28:

    Page 4, line 16, at end insert--

("(5A) The fifth condition is that a parent or guardian has entrusted A with looking after their child B.").

The noble Baroness said: Again, we shall return to this matter on Report.

[Amendment No. 28 not moved.]

The Lord Bishop of Winchester: I wonder whether I am the only person who is now thoroughly puzzled. I heard the noble Lord, Lord Carlisle, make a helpful proposal, which I then heard the noble and learned Lord the Minister accept as helpful, namely that it is possible to work on a clause stand part basis. I then heard the noble Baroness, Lady Young, take no notice of that, and, it sounded to me, lose an opportunity to work on the material, as she was being given an opportunity to do by the noble and learned Lord the Minister. I am therefore thoroughly puzzled. I wonder whether I am the only person who is thoroughly puzzled or whether I, too, have misheard it all.

Lord Carlisle of Bucklow: My understanding--and I thought that the learned Attorney-General agreed with me--is that on the issue of clause stand part you are entitled to discuss not only what is in it but other matters relevant to it. I see the learned Clerk nodding. It seems to me, therefore, that although one cannot at this moment move any of the particular amendments that refer to a fifth condition, it is possible on a debate on clause stand part to raise the issues covered in those amendments and invite the Government to say what their general view is and what they are prepared to consider, so that amendments can then be put down on Report in the knowledge of the Government's overall reaction.

Lord Williams of Mostyn: I can only repeat that I agree with what the noble Lord, Lord Carlisle, has said. But it is a matter for the noble Baroness to take what course she pleases on her amendments.

Lord Carter: If it would help on the numbering, I think we have to get to Amendment No. 44 in its place in the Marshalled List before we reach the end of the amendments to Clause 4, and that would be the appropriate point at which to debate the Question That Clause 4 stand part.

Lord Monson: Perhaps I may ask the noble Lord whether it is the case that there is no reason why Amendment No. 41 should not be moved, because it is not dependent on a fifth condition. Amendment No. 41 comes naturally before Amendment No. 44. No mention is made of a fifth condition so far as Amendment No. 41 is concerned. Therefore, the noble Baroness, Lady Young, is perfectly entitled to move Amendment No. 41 if she wishes.

Earl Russell: I think we have confused two questions here. As I understand it, the noble Lord, Lord Carter, was responding to the question as to what point we

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have to reach before we can have a general discussion on clause stand part. I agree with him. The noble Lord, Lord Monson, has picked up a different question: how far down the list of amendments do we have to go before we reach a point where we are not blocked by the existence of a fifth condition? It is a different question. The noble Lord, Lord Monson, is also right.

[Amendments Nos. 29 to 40 not moved.]

Baroness Young moved Amendment No. 41:

    Page 4, line 22, after ("of") insert (", or in loco parentis to,").

The noble Baroness said: The wording of this amendment makes its meaning perfectly clear. It seeks to protect children from adults who are in loco parentis. Once again, we are talking about an abuse of trust by adults who are in a position of trust with children, defined in law as 16 year-olds and others. This amendment includes them in the list of those people who have been excluded by the Government's very narrow definition of "abuse of trust" in this Bill. The amendment is perfectly clear and I hope that the Government will accept it. These very serious points arise not only from the Waterhouse inquiry but the fact that currently another 32 inquiries are being conducted into local authority children's homes of one kind or another. When we have an opportunity to try to correct some of the matters that have been identified as being wrong we should do so. This important category stands with all the others. I beg to move.

9.30 p.m.

Lord Williams of Mostyn: If one looks at subsections (2) to (5) of Clause 4, a person who cares for, trains, supervises or is in sole charge of a young person is already covered by the proposed offence and will frequently be "in loco parentis to". We find it difficult to envisage circumstances in which a person would be in loco parentis and yet would not look after a child. After all, if one asks what it is that parents do--in other words, what "in loco parentis" means--they look after children. One possible example is the director of the social services department of a local authority. He may be in loco parentis, but it is very unlikely that he will ever come into contact with the child, let alone engage in a relationship. A person such as a head teacher or head of a care home will have more regular contact with a child, but that individual will have a caring and/or supervisory role and, therefore, is caught by the "looks after" requirement.

My understanding is that this additional category is unnecessary. I take the points that the noble Baroness makes. Without giving any particular promise, I shall look at the matter again with officials to see whether there is truly a gap which needs to be filled. At the moment, my advice is that there is no such gap. Bearing in mind the concern of the noble Baroness, I am more than content to review the position with officials.

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