Previous Section Back to Table of Contents Lords Hansard Home Page


22ALine 39, at end insert—
(1) In the event that—
(a) the Chief Constable is unable to appoint his required number of police trainees or police support staff, or
(b) the number of serving officers is below that intended at the time of consideration,
the Secretary of State shall, at the request of the police board and acting on the recommendation of the Chief Constable, make an order to suspend the provisions of section 46 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000 for a period of six months."

3 Apr 2003 : Column 1503

22BLine 41, after "17A" insert ", 17B"
22CLine 45, leave out "each member" and insert "a majority"
22DLine 47, at end insert—
"Recommendations under section 47B(1)
17B The Board shall not give an authorisation under section 47B(1) unless a proposal to make a request has been approved by a majority of the Board present and voting on the question at a meeting of the Board."

Lord Rogan: My Lords, I beg to move, as amendments to Commons Amendment No. 22, Amendments Nos. 22A to 22D.

It is not my intention to detain the House unnecessarily. Noble Lords will be well aware of our objections to the discriminatory recruitment policy for the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

I am reminded of words I used during the Report stage of consideration of the Bill: 50:50 has created a Catch 22 situation. Aware that the discriminatory recruitment policy has not worked—the Police Service of Northern Ireland is struggling to attract the number of recruits required to police Northern Ireland effectively—the Government have given themselves several get-out clauses. In the words of my party colleague in another place, Lady Hermon, the Government clearly want to have their cake and eat it. By allowing the Chief Constable to recruit constables with specified skills outside the 50:50 recruitment policy, the Government are prolonging the period for which discrimination will be applied.

The principle of equality of opportunity is central to the Belfast agreement. Policing should not be regarded as an exception; 50:50 recruitment denies equality of opportunity—it is nothing short of discrimination. It is a great source of grievance for a very large number of people across Northern Ireland. We in the Ulster Unionist Party have always been consistent in our opposition to 50:50 recruitment.

Amendments Nos. 22A, 22B, 22C and 22D provide that, at the request of a majority of the Policing Board, when the Chief Constable has a shortfall in recruits the provisions of Section 46-50:50—could be suspended for six months. It seems to me that while not ideal—we would very much welcome the complete withdrawal of Section 46—this is an extremely sensible amendment, designed to assist the Chief Constable to police Northern Ireland effectively and efficiently.

We were pleased to note that both Conservative and Liberal Democrat Members of Parliament in another place joined my party colleagues in the Lobbies last week on a similar amendment. I hope that I can enjoy the same privilege.

Moved, as amendments to Commons Amendment No. 22, Amendments Nos. 22A to 22D .—(Lord Rogan.)

3 Apr 2003 : Column 1504

5.19 p.m.

On Question, Whether the said amendments shall be agreed to?

Their Lordships divided: Contents, 63; Not-Contents, 118.

Division No. 4


Anelay of St Johns, B.
Ashcroft, L.
Astor of Hever, L.
Biffen, L.
Blackwell, L.
Blaker, L.
Blatch, B.
Bridgeman, V. [Teller]
Brooke of Sutton Mandeville, L.
Brougham and Vaux, L.
Burnham, L.
Byford, B.
Campbell of Alloway, L.
Carlisle of Bucklow, L.
Chadlington, L.
Cope of Berkeley, L.
Denham, L.
Dixon-Smith, L.
Elliott of Morpeth, L.
Elton, L.
Feldman, L.
Ferrers, E.
Glentoran, L.
Goschen, V.
Hanham, B.
Hanningfield, L.
Howe, E.
Howe of Aberavon, L.
Laird, L. [Teller]
Luke, L.
McColl of Dulwich, L.
Maginnis of Drumglass, L.
Mancroft, L.
Marlesford, L.
Marsh, L.
Mayhew of Twysden, L.
Molyneaux of Killead, L.
Monro of Langholm, L.
Monson, L.
Montrose, D.
Moynihan, L.
Newton of Braintree, L.
Noakes, B.
Norton of Louth, L.
O'Cathain, B.
Onslow, E.
Park of Monmouth, B.
Peel, E.
Plumb, L.
Quinton, L.
Rees, L.
Renton, L.
Roberts of Conwy, L.
Rogan, L.
Seccombe, B.
Selborne, E.
Shaw of Northstead, L.
Skelmersdale, L.
Strathclyde, L.
Swinfen, L.
Tebbit, L.
Wakeham, L.
Wilcox, B.


Acton, L.
Addington, L.
Ahmed, L.
Alli, L.
Alton of Liverpool, L.
Andrews, B.
Archer of Sandwell, L.
Ashton of Upholland, B.
Barker, B.
Bassam of Brighton, L.
Bernstein of Craigweil, L.
Brennan, L.
Brooke of Alverthorpe, L.
Brookman, L.
Campbell-Savours, L.
Carter, L.
Christopher, L.
Clarke of Hampstead, L.
Clement-Jones, L.
Cohen of Pimlico, B.
Corbett of Castle Vale, L.
Crawley, B.
David, B.
Davies of Coity, L.
Davies of Oldham, L.
Dean of Thornton-le-Fylde, B.
Desai, L.
Dixon, L.
Donoughue, L.
Dormand of Easington, L.
Elder, L.
Evans of Temple Guiting, L.
Farrington of Ribbleton, B.
Faulkner of Worcester, L.
Gale, B.
Gibson of Market Rasen, B.
Gilbert, L.
Golding, B.
Goldsmith, L.
Goodhart, L.
Goudie, B.
Gould of Potternewton, B.
Grabiner, L.
Graham of Edmonton, L.
Grocott, L. [Teller]
Hamwee, B.
Hardy of Wath, L.
Harris of Richmond, B.
Harrison, L.
Haskel, L.
Hayman, B.
Hilton of Eggardon, B.
Hollick, L.
Hollis of Heigham, B.
Howells of St. Davids, B.
Hoyle, L.
Hylton, L.
Janner of Braunstone, L.
Jay of Paddington, B.
King of West Bromwich, L.
Lipsey, L.
Livsey of Talgarth, L.
Macdonald of Tradeston, L.
McIntosh of Haringey, L. [Teller]
MacKenzie of Culkein, L.
McNally, L.
Maddock, B.
Miller of Chilthorne Domer, B.
Mishcon, L.
Morgan of Huyton, B.
Morris of Aberavon, L.
Newby, L.
Nicol, B.
Northover, B.
Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay, L.
Patel, L.
Patel of Blackburn, L.
Pendry, L.
Pitkeathley, B.
Prys-Davies, L.
Ramsay of Cartvale, B.
Rea, L.
Rendell of Babergh, B.
Richard, L.
Rodgers of Quarry Bank, L.
Rogers of Riverside, L.
Roll of Ipsden, L.
Rooker, L.
Roper, L.
Russell, E.
Sawyer, L.
Scott of Needham Market, B.
Sewel, L.
Shutt of Greetland, L.
Simon, V.
Smith of Clifton, L.
Smith of Leigh, L.
Stone of Blackheath, L.
Strabolgi, L.
Symons of Vernham Dean, B.
Taylor of Blackburn, L.
Temple-Morris, L.
Thomas of Walliswood, B.
Thomson of Monifieth, L.
Turnberg, L.
Turner of Camden, B.
Walker of Doncaster, L.
Wallace of Saltaire, L.
Walmsley, B.
Warwick of Undercliffe, B.
Whitaker, B.
Whitty, L.
Williams of Crosby, B.
Williams of Elvel, L.
Williams of Mostyn, L. (Lord Privy Seal)
Winston, L.
Woolmer of Leeds, L.
Young of Old Scone, B.

Resolved in the negative, and Motion disagreed to accordingly.

3 Apr 2003 : Column 1505

5.28 p.m.

On Question, Commons Amendment No. 22 agreed to.


23After Clause 19, insert the following new clause—
In section 27 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 1998 (c.32) (members of Police Service of Northern Ireland engaged on other police service) after subsection (6) insert—
"(6A) Regulations made by virtue of section 25(3) or (4) in relation to a member of the PSNI who has completed a period of relevant service within subsection (1)(d) may provide for a relevant procedure to be treated for the purposes of the regulations as carried out in accordance with procedures for which provision is made by regulations made by virtue of section 25(3).
(6B) In subsection (6A) "relevant procedure" means an investigation, hearing or other procedure carried out in relation to the person concerned in a country or territory outside the United Kingdom in connection with the person's relevant service.""

Lord Williams of Mostyn: My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 23.

Clause 19 allows the Chief Constable to make fixed-term appointments to the PSNI. The Chief Constable, if he requires special expertise, is entitled to procure it in that way, including from members of the Garda in the Irish Republic. Such secondments could also take place in the other direction. The Irish Government will

3 Apr 2003 : Column 1506

shortly be bringing forward a Bill to allow secondments of policing powers from PSNI to the Garda.

The secondment of PSNI officers to the Garda will take place under Section 8 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000. It deals with the provision by the board of advice and assistance to international organisations such as the United Nations and other police services. Section 27 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 1998 sets out some of the key principles.

One key principle deals with discipline. Normally, where a member of the PSNI is seconded under Section 8, he may be dealt with under the PSNI's own conduct regulations for any breach of discipline as if that breach had been committed during service with the PSNI. The amendment allows the Secretary of State to modify the relevant regulations in respect of disciplinary matters to enable investigations and hearings held in a country outside the United Kingdom to be taken into account by the PSNI in its own disciplinary proceedings.

Clearly, the imposition of sanctions could have a significant effect on an officer's career and it is right that the choice of penalty should be, and remain, the responsibility of the home service. In practical terms it makes more sense for the host service to carry out the investigation and hearing as this would take place in the jurisdiction in which the alleged offence would have occurred. These arrangements will be reciprocal. Any PSNI officer will be subject to the code of ethics and he would fall within the remit of the Police Ombudsman if a complaint were made.

We expect to have very little, if any, recourse to such regulations. Any member of the PNSI who was seconded anywhere in the world would be an ambassador for his service, but we need to provide for these eventualities.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 23.—(Lord Williams of Mostyn.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

Next Section Back to Table of Contents Lords Hansard Home Page