House of Commons
4th December 2013
Notices of Motions for which no days have been fixed
('Early Day Motions')
The figure following this symbol is the number of Members who have added their names in support of the Motion, including the Member in charge of the Motion.
After an Early Day Motion (EDM) has been printed for the first time, it is only reprinted when names are added or amendments tabled; only the first six names and any names added since the last printing are included. After the week in which a Motion is first printed and the following week, added names and amendments appear only in a separate paper, Mature EDMs, distributed the next Thursday. In the meantime, they are available for inspection by Members in the Table Office and the Library or on the EDM database at edmi.parliament.uk
806 WORLD AIDS DAY 2013 27:11:13
That this House supports World Aids Day 2013, which will take place on 1 December 2013; recognises that the day offers an opportunity for people across the UK and the world to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate those who have died; notes that approximately 100,000 people are currently living with HIV in the UK and, globally, it is estimated that 34 million people have HIV; and calls on the Government to show its support for World Aids Day by committing to increase awareness, fight prejudice and improve education about HIV.
807 BIRKHEADS SECRET GARDENS AND NURSERY FUNDRAISING 27:11:13
That this House salutes the initiative of Christine and Mike Liddle, the owners of Birkheads Secret Gardens and Nursery near Sunniside in Gateshead in opening their gardens and coffee shop recently for a special fundraising event for the victims of the typhoons in the Philippines; congratulates them on raising a substantial amount of money for the Philippines' disaster appeal fund; and believes that this fine example of British generosity and compassion should be emulated elsewhere.
808 ISLAMIC FINANCE LECTURE SERIES 2013 27:11:13
That this House congratulates the London School of Economics and Fajr Capital on co-hosting the 2013 Islamic Finance Lecture Series; welcomes the House of Commons reception on 2 December 2013 to conclude that series of events; notes that the lecture series informed students, recent graduates and city professionals on the importance of a principles-based approach to financial services; further notes the Islamic financial services industry's valuable role in attracting trade and investment into the UK; and calls on the Government to promote Islamic finance's principles of ethical, community banking and socially responsbile investing to enable long-term growth, employment and prosperity.
809 LAUNCH OF LOVE YOUR NATIONAL PARKS CELEBRATION 27:11:13
That this House welcomes the launch of the Love Your National Parks celebration; sees the UK's national parks as assets to the nation which enjoy widespread public support and are enjoyed by millions of visitors; celebrates the diversity of national parks from upland to lowland areas; notes that they provide havens for wildlife, stunning scenery, rich cultural heritage, opportunities for adventure, inspiration, learning, physical and mental well-being and spiritual renewal, and a home for thousands of businesses; further notes that much economic activity in national parks is underpinned by their high-quality environment; further welcomes the fact that employment grew by 2.7 per cent in national parks in 2012; observes that the 90 million visitors to England's national parks alone already account for more than £4 to £6 billion of spending in national parks and their surrounding areas; further welcomes the aim of the celebration to grow the economic contribution of national parks further and increase awareness of how they can support people's health and well-being; recognises England's national parks as part of the wider network of the UK's national parks that together represent Britain's breathing spaces; and supports the impressive work of the National Park Authorities, farmers, land managers, non-governmental organisations, businesses, local communities and a wide range of partners that make this happen.
811 RUGBY WORLD CUP 2015 AND TICKET TOUTS 27:11:13
That this House is looking forward to England hosting the Rugby World Cup in 2015; recognises that tickets for these matches will be in high demand; is concerned that there is no legislative framework to protect these tickets from reaching the secondary market; is further concerned that this will make it possible for these tickets to be targeted by touts; notes that police intelligence indicates that many ticket touts are part of highly organised criminal gangs who have access to technology that guarantees they can purchase large numbers of tickets; is dismayed that this will leave genuine fans with no alternative other than to pay inflated prices if they wish to attend these matches; believes that tickets should only be offered for resale at the original price printed on the ticket; and calls on the Government to legislate to designate the Rugby Union World Cup as an event of national significance as was done for the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games thereby making it illegal for anyone other than the Rugby World Cup through its England 2015 programme to offer tickets for sale at any time.
813 PULSE OXIMETRY TESTING OF ALL NEWBORNS 27:11:13
That this House urges the Secretary of State for Health to ensure that hospitals and the medical profession administer the pulse oximetry tests on newborns as part of standard tests that are carried out to detect heart conditions; notes that congenital heart defects are the most common birth defect affecting around one in every 133 children in the UK or around 5,000 to 6,000 each year; further notes that getting more conditions diagnosed early could help save money, distress and save lives; and further notes that pulse oximetry tests are cheap, easy to administer and painless.
814 PUT US IN THE PICTURE: REPORT ON INCLUDING PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES IN INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT 27:11:13
That this House welcomes the Sightsavers' Put Us In the Picture report; notes that despite the fact that over one billion people worldwide have a disability, 80 per cent of whom live in developing countries, too few of them benefit from international aid programmes; agrees with the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for International Development that disability is the great neglected issue in development; further welcomes the International Development Select Committee's current inquiry into disability; believes that the potential for people with disabilities to contribute to global development is being missed because their specific needs and voices are not being taken into consideration; agrees that only with the active inclusion of people with disabilities in both UK aid programmes, and the framework that will replace the Millennium Development Goals in 2015, eliminating extreme poverty and achieving universal primary education will become realistic goals; calls on the Government to build on its recent progress by adopting a systematic approach to ensuring that people with disabilities benefit equally from, and have a voice in, international development; and urges the Government to champion disability in international development discussions.
815 MANDATORY RECONSIDERATION AND EMPLOYMENT AND SUPPORT ALLOWANCE 27:11:13
That this House views with concern the plans to introduce a period of mandatory reconsideration as an intermediate stage for claimants of employment and support allowance (ESA) who wish to appeal the decision not to award this benefit; notes with even greater concern that the assessment rate of this benefit will not be paid during this period and that no time limit has been set for the reconsideration process; calls on the Government to guarantee that any attempt to claim other benefits, particularly jobseeker's allowance (JSA), during the reconsideration will not influence the result of the reconsideration or a subsequent appeal; urges the Government to provide clarity about whether an ESA claimant who successfully appeals following mandatory reconsideration will have their reinstated ESA backdated to cover the full reconsideration period; believes that seriously ill or disabled people are effectively being financially penalised for disagreeing with a decision made by the Department for Work and Pensions and that people who may not be entitled to either JSA or ESA will face intense hardship; and further calls on the Government to reassess its proposals in such a way as to ensure that claimants are not left in an ever-worsening spiral into poverty.
816 IMPLEMENTATION OF SELECT COMMITTEE REPORT ON FOOTBALL LEAGUE 27:11:13
That this House notes the recent work of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee into Football Governance; further notes the report published by the Committee in July 2011 that found the Football Association (FA) in need of urgent reform; further notes that the report raised concerns including that the leagues have too great an influence over the FA's decision-making processes, at the increasing commercialisation of the game and the consequent financial risk being taken on by football clubs; further notes the report's call for the industry to put forward proposals for reform and the subsequent proposals from football authorities; further notes the Committee's rejection of the proposals and calls for the Government to bring forward legislative proposals; further notes the position of the Government as expressed in a letter of 30 April 2013 from the then Minister for Sport to the Committee as reproduced as an Appendix to the Committee's First Special Report of 2013-14, HC 156, stating that he agreed with the committee's recommendation that in the absence of significant progress by the beginning of next season, the Government should seek to introduce legislation as soon as practicably possible and that 'I have already been given drafting authority by the Parliamentary Counsel, and my officials have started working up a draft Bill and supporting documentation should football fail to deliver. This Bill will reflect the conclusions of your report'; and calls on the Government to bring forward legislation on football governance and finances as soon possible.
817 IMPRISONMENT OF ZAKARIA AL SAFWAN IN SAUDI ARABIA 28:11:13
That this House is deeply concerned at the 10 year prison sentence in Saudi Arabia of Zakaria Al Safwan following his initial detention in April 2011 after writing an article entitled, In Defence of Peaceful Protest; is further concerned that the charges he faced included contacting foreign media and writing anti-government articles; notes he was denied access to a lawyer throughout this case; and calls on the Government to raise this case immediately with the government of Saudi Arabia and request access to him by independent human rights groups.
818 RECOGNITION OF WORK DONE BY THE CHARITY, INDEPENDENT AGE 28:11:13
That this House acknowledges that on 23 December 2013 it will be the 150th anniversary of Independent Age, a national older people's charity which offers advice, befriending and also campaigns for a fairer deal for older people; celebrates the work the charity does to provide personalised support to 10,000 older people and their families, including information and advice on social care provision; notes that Independent Age provides up to 40,000 older people and their families with information and support via a growing range of free publications and guides and advice on its website; welcomes the charity's production of Wise Guides, which offers practical information and advice for over-65s on finances, staying independent and getting the most out of later life; believes it is crucial that charities like Independent Age are in place to offer regular face-to-face or telephone support to those who are lonely or isolated through its network of volunteers; and calls on all hon. and right hon. Members to support Independent Age as it continues its work assisting older people.
819 UNESCO WORLD PHILOSOPHY DAY 2013 28:11:13
That this House notes that reasoning and critical thinking are important for education and innovation and that speaking and listening skills are vital for literacy and emotional development; further notes that philosophical inquiry develops these vital skills and a range of others necessary for the future economic and social development of the UK; is concerned about the focus on teaching to test rather than inspiring life-long learning; reaffirms its concern over the high number of children and adults who struggle with literacy difficulties and considers that all children and young people should be able to access philosophy to improve educational achievement and autonomous thinking; commends the mission of the Philosophy Foundation to raise aspiration and attainment through promoting philosophical inquiry in the classroom; and welcomes the opportunity of UNESCO World Philosophy Day 2013 to highlight the need to expand access to philosophical inquiry to all children.
821 HEART FAILURE AND DIABETES 28:11:13
That this House is alarmed by the findings of the National Diabetes Audit published earlier this month which found that people with diabetes are 38 per cent more likely to die early and have a 73 per cent higher chance of being admitted to hospital for heart failure than others; notes that the Audit looked at the experience of more than two million people with diabetes and found that more than a quarter of hospital admissions for heart failure were among diabetics; recognises that blood pressure and cholesterol checks are part of the nine key care processes in the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines, but that on average only 49.8 per cent of patients received all nine checks; and calls on the Government to create a targeted campaign at healthcare professionals to raise awareness of the guidelines, so that all diabetics receive all nine checks.
822 MAKING MISLEADING WEBSITES PURPORTING TO OFFER GOVERNMENT PAYMENT SERVICES ILLEGAL 28:11:13
That this House notes that unofficial websites are continuing to rip off customers seeking to pay for Government services such as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency and Land Registry; further notes that the Cabinet Office and Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, as departments responsible for these two services, are aware of the problem but have not so far secured the full co-operation of Google in protecting the public from these sites; further notes the Government has been advised that in most instances these unofficial websites are not illegal under current law; and therefore calls on the Government to bring forward legislative proposals urgently to make it illegal for unofficial websites to solicit payment for Government services, payment for which is already freely available on the official Government websites.
824 PRESERVATION OF THE UK'S INDUSTRIAL HERITAGE 29:11:13
That this House is concerned that the future of two historic textile machines, unique examples of innovative nylon and polyester yarn-making equipment from the 1950s, may be at risk following reorganisation of exhibits at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) in Manchester; notes that the Fluflon and air-jet weaving machines are irreplaceable artefacts from the UK's hey-day of artificial fibre textile development; and calls on the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport to work with MOSI to secure their safe preservation for posterity.
825 BAKERS' ASTHMA 2:12:13
That this House notes with concern recent Health and Safety Executive statistics which demonstrate that employees in the baking industry remain approximately 40 times more likely to develop occupational asthma than the average worker due to exposure to flour and other bakery dusts; further notes that the real incidence rates are higher still, given academic data on the under-reporting of the condition in the UK; believes that every worker has the right to work in a healthy and safe workplace and is extremely alarmed that thousands of bakers could be at risk of developing an incapacitating respiratory condition; further notes that local authorities lack the resources to conduct regular inspections of exposure levels in supermarket scratch bakeries and small, independent craft bakeries; recognises the outstanding research work done over many years by Professor Paul Cullinan of the National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College, London; welcomes the agreement of supermarket chain Morrisons to work with Professor Cullinan on identifying measures to limit this exposure in its bakeries; and further calls on the Government to meet the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union in order to ensure that all relevant employers implement such control measures to protect bakers from developing asthma.
826 UK PENSIONERS' PARLIAMENT 2:12:13
That this House welcomes the support given in recent years by Government and by the devolved administrations to organisations such as the British Youth Parliament and the Scottish Youth Parliament; notes that in recent times these organisations have contributed significantly to the public debate on a number of issues such as lowering the voting age and have raised the profile of many issues of importance to young people; further notes that in Ireland the Irish Senior Citizens Parliament has had similar success raising issues such as pensions; believes that similar organisations could help highlight the issues facing pensioners living in the UK; and calls on the Government to look into creating and supporting a UK Pensioners' Parliament to help ensure that the views of pensioners are properly taken into account by Government and service providers.
827 KILBIRNIE NET WORKERS' STRIKE 1913 2:12:13
That this House pays tribute to the Kilbirnie Women Workers on the 100th anniversary of their strike in 1913; commends the determination of the women workers of these fishing net factories in Kilbirnie; acknowledges that those who took part in the 22 week dispute fought to secure improved pay and conditions and union recognition; further acknowledges the work of Kate McLean setting up the branch of the National Federation of Women Workers in the thread mill in Kilbirnie in 1912; recognises the support given by the Scottish Trades Union Congress in raising financial support and helping to settle the dispute; understands that the progress which has been made in improving equality in the workplace would not have occurred were it not for women such as the Kilbirnie Women Workers standing up for their rights; and further commends the women involved in 1913 for securing an agreement of secure pay, union recognition and non-victimisation of strikers.
828 THE T20 WORLD CUP 2014 IN BANGLADESH 2:12:13
That this House congratulates Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Ireland, Nepal, The Netherlands, United Arab Emirates and Zimbabwe for qualifying for the T20 Cricket World Cup in Bangladesh in 2014, and Ireland for winning the qualification tournament in Abu Dhabi; commiserates with Namibia, Scotland, Italy, Papua New Guinea, Canada, Kenya, Uganda, Bermuda, the US and Denmark who failed to qualify; and looks forward to Bangladesh hosting an excellent world cup in Sylhet, Chittagong and Mirpur, Dhaka between 16 March and 6 April 2014.
829 STEPHEN WARD 2:12:13
That this House notes that Stephen Ward was convicted by a jury in 1963 at the Old Bailey of living off immoral earnings; believes this to have been a miscarriage of justice brought about by an Establishment seeking to scapegoat Stephen Ward in order to deflect attention and responsibility from John Profumo; regrets that Stephen Ward was driven to suicide as a result of the witch-hunt against him; and calls on the Government to publish the transcript of the trial at the Old Bailey and the evidence provided to the Denning Inquiry into the Profumo affair, and to refer the conviction of Stephen Ward to the Court of Appeal as a potential miscarriage of justice.
830 CARE PROCEEDINGS AFFECTING FOREIGN NATIONALS 3:12:13
That this House notes that from time to time foreign nationals are taken into care in the UK; further notes that under Article 36 of the Vienna Convention and also under Brussels II Bis revised (Council Regulation (EC) No 2201/2003) articles 15, 55 and 56, foreign authorities should be contacted when this happens; further notes that in 2011 Essex County Council stated in respect to a Freedom of Information request that it had no contact with high commissioners or embassies, notwithstanding the fact that it had 21 foreign national children looked-after in 2010-11; recognises that it is clear that Essex County Council is not properly following the Vienna Convention and Brussels II regulations; believes that there are other local authorities that are similarly lax in following international law relating to care proceedings; calls on the Government to take steps to ensure that local authorities do follow international law; and further calls on the Government to maintain records, ideally through the SSDA903 return of the nationality of foreign nationals taken into care in England.
831  EWHC 3632 (Fam) LJ v JD 3:12:13
That this House notes that on 20 May 2013 JD was given a suspended prison sentence for contempt of court by His Honour Judge John in Swansea County Court; further notes that it took until December 2013 for this to appear on the Bailii database; further notes that in contravention of the practice direction of 3 May 2013 and later comments, JD has still not been identified; and calls for the Justice Select Committee to review why it is that some judges are not following the proper practice directions and what can be done to ensure that they do.
832 CRISIS IN GAZA 3:12:13
That this House views with grave concern a United Nations report that the situation in Gaza is near the point of catastrophe; underlines that the UN special rapporteur warns that lack of fuel imports has resulted in power cuts dramatically affecting basic services, including health, water and sanitation, with the result that raw sewage is flooding into the streets; notes that residents only receive power for six hours a day after the only power plant in Gaza was shut down due to a critical fuel shortage three weeks ago; further notes that the little power that is available is not sufficient to meet the needs of specialised health services, such as kidney dialysis, operating theatres, blood banks, intensive care units and incubators, putting innocent lives at risk; concludes that the inhumane, six-year blockade erected by Israel on the tiny strip of land holding 1.7 million people is the principal cause of this widespread suffering and distress, added to recently by the Egyptian military regime's destruction of tunnels on the Rafah border which helped to breach the embargo; and calls on the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs urgently to meet with his counterparts in Cairo and Tel Aviv to persuade them to remove the blockade and allow in urgent humanitarian aid and also to raise the plight of the people of Gaza at the United Nations General Assembly.
833 IMPOVERISHED CARERS 3:12:13
That this House is concerned that more than 32,000 carers who are looking after relatives are failing to claim carer's allowance, according to a survey by the charity Carers UK; notes that some £12.6 million has not been claimed by carers in Bradford; further notes that 42 per cent of those surveyed said they had missed financial support because of lack of information; points out that not only are carers among the poorest people in the country but they are being further hit by the bedroom tax, some of whom have lost over £700, and by the benefits cap; and calls on the Government to fund an extensive publicity campaign to make carers aware of their rights and allowances and to remove the bedroom tax penalty from some of the most impoverished people in the country.
835 NEW USAGE CLASS IN PLANNING LAW FOR TRADITIONAL PUBS 3:12:13
That this House welcomes new research entitled, Young adults and the decline of the urban English pub: issues for planning by Marion Roberts, University of Westminster and Tim Townshend, Newcastle University, published in the journal, Planning Theory and Practice in October 2013 which argues that the English planning system should create a new usage class for traditional pubs and argues in support of the traditional pub as a site for restrained and responsible social interaction for young adults; notes that this is an idea that the All-Party Parliamentary Save the Pub Group has previously proposed; and calls on the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government to seriously consider the concept which would be a way of preventing the loss of many viable and wanted local pubs which is currently happening due to the weakness of the planning system.
836 UK HOSTING OF THE RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP 3:12:13
That this House congratulates the players, team staff, fans, spectators, volunteers and organisers of the Rugby League World Cup 2013 (RLWC2013) for what has been a spectacular, thrilling and hugely popular tournament; feels this demonstrates the appeal of international rugby league; embraces the true sporting values shown by all involved; is proud of England and Wales for having hosted another fantastic spectacle of international sport; applauds the England, Scotland and Wales teams for their performances on the field; thanks Australia, Cook Islands, Fiji, France, Italy, Ireland, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga and USA for creating such a compelling competition; further congratulates Australia on becoming world champions; looks forward to the Rugby League World Cup 2017; recognises RLWC2013 as the most successful World Cup to date, including a record-breaking sell-out game for the final between Australia and New Zealand; and is confident in the legacy it will create for the sport in the UK and around the world.
837 ADVERTISING OF CHILDREN'S TOYS 3:12:13
That this House is concerned that the methods used to promote and advertise children's toys are far too often gender-specific; believes this is especially noticeable in the advertising campaigns up to Christmas with separate advertisements for boys toys and girls toys; is further concerned that there is a risk that children's preferences and expectations will be channelled along out-dated traditional lines which may impact on their future educational and career choices; welcomes the progress that many retailers have made in removing unnecessary gender-specific advertising for children; and calls on all retailers to take action to end unnecessary gender-specific advertising.
838 ROSALIND FRANKLIN AND WOMEN IN SCIENCE 4:12:13
That this House recognises and commends the contribution to science by Rosalind Franklin in molecular biology; notes her outstanding work in the fields of DNA, RNA, viruses, coal and graphite; further notes her work field of X-ray crystallography and the well-known X-ray diffraction image, Picture 51, which led to the discovery of the structure of DNA; believes that as a female scientist, whose contribution to the discovery of the structure of DNA was never fully recognised, she serves as a reminder of the importance of promoting the work of great women in science; and calls on the Government to do more to ensure that young people, particularly young women, are encouraged to pursue careers in science.
839 IMPERIAL WAR MUSEUMS' PRIVATISATION OF VISITOR SERVICES AND SECURITY 4:12:13
That this House commends the excellent work undertaken by the staff in visitor services and security at the Imperial War Museums; recognises that their expertise and experience creates an informative and personalised service for visitors; is concerned that the proposals for privatisation will result in the deterioration of this service at a crucial time of increased visitor numbers during the centenary of the First World War; and believes that visitor services and security should continue to be provided in-house to ensure a continued quality of service to the public and of terms and conditions of staff.
840 THE CULTURE SECTOR 4:12:13
That this House is concerned that the Government's funding cuts to museums and galleries has led to continued privatisation of services; notes that this has resulted in reductions in staff and the increased use of zero-hours contracts and volunteer staff; believes that the cuts and casualisation create a diminished experience for visitors; and calls on the Government to increase funding for arts and culture to ensure that the UK's cultural heritage is safeguarded for future generations.
841 FEDERATION OF BRITISH HISTORIC VEHICLE CLUBS 4:12:13
That this House pays tribute to the work of the Federation of British Historic Vehicle Clubs in promoting the preservation of historic vehicles and also encouraging their use; notes that the historic vehicle movement contributes £4.3 billion annually to the UK economy and employs 28,000 people; congratulates the Federation on the occasion of its 25th anniversary in 2013; and wishes it continued success in the future.
842 EU-MOROCCO FISHERIES PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT 4:12:13
That this House notes the imminent vote on 10 December 2013 in the European Parliament on the new Protocol to the EU-Morocco Fisheries Partnership Agreement; acknowledges that the Government to date has not supported this protocol which, if approved, would be in clear violation of international law because it includes the Western Sahara (WS) territorial waters; further notes that the WS remains under illegal Moroccan occupation and no country recognises Moroccan sovereignty over it and so any agreement with Morocco should exclude the WS territories and its natural resources; recognises that the European Parliament voted against the same protocol 12 months ago; and calls on all MEPs to send a positive message to the Saharawi people and vote against the Protocol and to support the United Nations in its efforts to reach a just, lasting solution to this long-running conflict.
843 RAIL ELECTRIFICATION TO HULL 4:12:13
That this House urges the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Secretary of State for Transport to support First Hull Trains' proposals to electrify 70 miles of track between Hull and Selby; notes that under current plans, Network Rail intends only to electrify east-west rail services as far as Selby as part of a £9.4 billion package of rail infrastructure funding announced in 2012; further notes that First Hull Trains has submitted a business plan for a private finance deal to fund the £94 million project to install 70 miles of electrified overhead line equipment to cover tracks both ways from Hull to Temple Hirst junction; believes electrification is necessary to assist the millions of visitors who will be coming to Hull in 2017 when the city takes on the City of Culture title; understands that electrification will create jobs and growth and will provide a link between the city and the High Speed 2 network; acknowledges that electrification will also reduce journey times and provide opportunities for more direct services to London and other northern cities; calls on the Chancellor of the Exchequer and the Secretary of State for Transport to approve electrification on railway lines in and out of the city to support its economic regeneration and help bring the region's transport links into the 21st century; and congratulates the Hull Daily Mail on its Hook up Hull campaign which is championing the issue on behalf of its readers.
844 BANNING OF JOURNALISTS FROM FOOTBALL GROUNDS 4:12:13
That this House condemns the decision of Newcastle United FC Chairman, Mike Ashley, to withdraw all report facilities for journalists working on the Newcastle Chronicle, Newcastle Journal and Sunday Sun; notes that the denial of access to the St James' Park stadium press box, training ground and interviews with players and manager leaves reporters unable to report on events which are of great interest to the local community; further notes that this follows the temporary banning of a Daily Telegraph reporter by the same club last season and similar actions by Nottingham Forest, Crawley Town, Port Vale and Rotherham United; supports the National Union of Journalists in believing that journalists working for a free press in a democratic society must be able to express themselves as they see fit within the law, without fear of petty and vindictive corporate sanctions; welcomes the broad support that supporters of the club have given to reporters trying to do their professional best in reporting the affairs of football clubs; and therefore calls on the Premier League and Football Association to implement a code of conduct in respect of the treatment of working journalists.
845 FUTURE OF THE MAPLES RESPITE CENTRE IN HARLOW 4:12:13
That this House acknowledges that the Maples children's respite centre in Harlow is an integral part of the community that provides comfort and security to families and children with special needs; notes that Councillor Madden, Cabinet member for Essex County Council, has said that no final decision about the centre's future will be taken unless alternative services that meet local needs are in place; strongly believes however that the Maples respite centre should be kept open as it is unlikely that similar alternative provisions will be found and that its closure would be detrimental to its hard-working staff, volunteers, parents and children for which the Maples acts as a lifeline; commends the petition (www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/essex-county-council-ensure-the-future-of-the-maples-respite-centre) that has been signed by 1,076 people; and urges Essex County Council to take note of the strong feelings of Harlow residents.
846 RETIREMENT OF FOOTBALLER DAVID HEALY 4:12:13
That this House notes the retirement from football of David Healy MBE; recognises the outstanding contribution he has made at a number of clubs, but particularly his Northern Ireland career where he is the country's highest ever goal-scorer with 36 goals in 95 international appearances; further recognises that he is one of the few players in the world to score a hat-trick against Spain, also smashing the European record with 13 goals in a single European qualifying campaign; and wishes him and his family every success for the future in the knowledge that his goal-scoring exploits will live long in the memory of football fans across the UK but especially in his birthplace, Northern Ireland.
847 UNION FLAG 4:12:13
That this House rejects the need for a new flag for Northern Ireland; stands four-square behind the Union Flag as the flag of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; demands that the National Flag is treated with respect and is appropriately recognised throughout Northern Ireland and especially in Belfast; and further rejects all efforts to dilute the status of the National Flag.
848 COUNTRY SPORTS 4:12:13
That this House acknowledges that shooting sports' true value to the UK is worth £1.6 billion; further acknowledges that it creates approximately 60,000 jobs for the economy; and believes that it improves the environment and benefits all.
849 POLICING OF MINIMUM WAGE 4:12:13
That this House views with concern that only two employers in four years have been prosecuted for paying below the minimum wage; understands that HM Revenue and Customs has investigated 10,777 firms since 2009, collected £15.8 million in arrears and imposed £2.1 million in fines; points out that the unit which pursues firms costs £8 million a year to run whereas it collects just £4 million a year in arrears; notes that an estimated 300,000 people in the UK are earning less than the minimum wage; and demands a zero-tolerance policy so that all companies discovered to be paying below the minimum wage are named and shamed and that fines are increased by at least 10 times the present paltry ceiling of £5,000.
850 PUBLIC CONSULTATION ON THE PRIVATISATION OF EAST COAST MAIN LINE SERVICES 4:12:13
That this House notes that rail services on the East Coast Main Line have been publicly and successfully run since November 2009; further notes the record levels of passenger satisfaction; believes that the Government's plans to re-privatise East Coast Main Line services by February 2015 is motivated by rigid ideology and not in the best interests of taxpayers or passengers; and calls on the Government to hold a full public consultation before any final decision is made.
851 FRANK GORMILL 4:12:13
That this House notes with sadness the death of former Labour councillor, Frank Gormill, who celebrated his 95th birthday only in March 2013; also notes that he was first elected to Lanark County Council and the Seventh District Council on 5 December 1945 to represent the people of Allanton and Shotts and subsequently represented the same ward on Motherwell District Council and North Lanarkshire Council until he retired in 2007; further notes that his long career as a representative of his community serving as a councillor for over 61 years, which made him the longest-serving councillor in the UK; further notes that he was a strong trade unionist and became Assistant General Secretary of the Scottish Colliery, Enginemen, Boilermen and Tradesmen's Association in 1956 and General Secretary in 1966; believes that his contribution to local government and civil society in Scotland was an example to everyone; and posthumously thanks him for the hard work and dedication that he has showed in serving his country, his community, his fellow workers and the people of Lanarkshire.