tv The Week in Parliament BBC News June 24, 2017 2:30am-3:01am BST
this is bbc news. the headlines: thousands of people are being evacuated from five tower blocks in north london, so that urgent fire safety work can be carried out. the buildings in camden have the same type of cladding that contributed to a huge blaze last week at grenfell tower. qatar's neighbours have called for the closure of aljazeera as the gulf‘s political crisis escalates. the broadcaster says it's a bid to "silence freedom of expression". the white house says the tension between qatar and other gulf nations is a family issue which should be resolved locally. europe's most senior official has criticised the uk's offer to eu nationals after brexit, claiming it could "worsen the situation" for them. european council president donald tusk said the plan was "below expectations" — and german chancellor angela merkel said there had been "no breakthrough". now on bbc news. the week in parliament.
plymouth hello and welcome to the programme. in the week that the queen came to westminster for the state opening of parliament and set out the plans of the government for the next two years, starting with brexit. my government will seek to maintaina deep brexit. my government will seek to maintain a deep and special partnership with the european allies and to forge new trading relationships across the globe. theresa may sets out what action the government is taking following the grand felt how fire that reveals other high—rise blocks could be at risk. mr speaker, shortly before it came to the chamber i was informed that a number of these tests have come back as combustible. and all
mps come back as combustible. and all m ps start come back as combustible. and all mps start their life in parliament by taking an oath of allegiance to the monarch. is it time for a change? i think the cream is a wonderful woman and does great work that i'm here to represent the people and that was not an option. -- i think people and that was not an option. —— i think the queen is a wonderful woman. it has been a dramatic couple of weeks since we were last year with an election result we did not predict and to reason may return in barely the largest party in parliament. cue jubilation for labour after a better—than—expected performance by jeremy corbyn. labour after a better—than—expected performance byjeremy corbyn. the deal between the dup and to reason may is up in the air and with the top clock ticking on brexit it was time for the state opening of brexit. because no one was expecting a general election at the start of june, there was no time to prepare for the traditional pomp and ceremony with coaches, horses and massed ranks of guardsmen. so it was
a very scaled—back procession that set off from buckingham palace with the queen of travelling by car to westminster, accompanied by the prince of wales. there was no duke of edinburgh either. he was recovering from an infection. when the queen, without a ceremonial robes and prince charles arrived they they walked behind the crown and took their seats. then it was time to summon mps to hear the speech. and with that, the mps left the commons, processing out of their chambers through the central lobby and on into the house of lords. normally the prime minister and the leader of the opposition exchanged pleasantries but there was little chitchat between theresa may and jeremy corbyn. and when mps had arrived at the bar at the back of the lords, the queen read out the contents the lords, the queen read out the co nte nts of the lords, the queen read out the contents of the speech. the 64th time she had performed the role, beginning with the government's
plans for brexit. my government's priority is to secure the best possible deal as the country leaves the european union. establishing new national policies on immigration, international sanctions, a nuclear safeguards, agriculture and fisheries. there was no word on grammar schools but, instead... my government will continue to work to ensure that every child has the opportunity to attend a good school. and that all schools are fairly funded. and as for the conservative's controversial ma nifesto conservative's controversial manifesto policy on social care? conservative's controversial manifesto policy on social care 7m my will work to improve social care and will bring forward proposals in consultation. there were had been a public enquiry into the grenfell tower block fire. to ascertain the causes and to assure that the appropriate lessons are learned. to support victims, my government will ta ke forward support victims, my government will take forward measures to introduce
an independent public advocate who will act with brive to families after a public disaster. in the light of the terrorist attacks in manchester and london, my government's counterterrorism strategy will be reviewed to ensure that the police and security services have all the powers they need and that the length of custodial sentences to terrorism related sentences are sufficient to keep the population safe. so, a nine minute speech, stripped of many of the controversial ideas in the conservative manifesto. with a day's ceremony over it was the turn of mps to discuss what had been proposed. after a one—minute silent to remember those killed and injured in the recent terror attacks and how fire, it was over tojeremy corbyn for labour‘s response. he began by reflecting on the disaster grenfell tower. the fire has killed at least
79 people. what makes it both a tragedy and an outrage is that every single one of those deaths could have been avoided. turning to the speech its self and he argued there was very little in it. a threadbare legislative programme from a government that has lost its majority and apparently run out of ideas altogether. this would be a thin legislative programme even if it were for one year but for two yea rs ? it were for one year but for two years? two years? there is not enoughin years? two years? there is not enough in to fill up one year. he turned to what was not in the speech including means testing the winter fuel payment for pensioners. and older people and their families may also be keen for some clarity around the government's policy on social care. whether it is still what was originally set out in the conservative manifesto or whether it is what was later amended to or
whether it is now something else entirely. and then it was on to brexit. we need full access to the single market and the customs arrangements that provides a written, as the brexit secretary has pledged and i quote "with the exact same benefits as now." neither must either treat targets for emigration be prioritised over thejobs and living standards of the people of this country. theresa may began her speech by speaking about the g re nfell tower speech by speaking about the grenfell tower fire. one lady i met rain from the fire wearing no more than a t—shirt and a pair of knickers. she had lost everything. let me be absolutely clear. the support on the ground for families in the initial hours was not good enough. people were left without belongings, without a roof over their head, without basic information about what had happened, what they should do and where they could seek help. that was a failure of the state, local and national, to help people when they needed it
most. as pro— minister, i apologise for that failure. she reflected on the election. our country is divided, red versus blue, young versus old, lee versus remain. as i said here last week, the test for all of us is whether we choose to reflected divisions will help the country overcome them. with humility and resolve, this government will seek to do the latter. she concluded that recent weeks and the terror attacks had been unsettling time. the queen ‘s speech on its own will not solve every challenge our country faces. not every problem can be solved by an act of parliament. but it is... but it is a step forward. it is a step forward to building a more compassionate and,
more united and more confident nation. that's what this government willaim to nation. that's what this government will aim to achieve. it's what this queen ‘s speech will deliver and i commend the queen speech to the house. after that, it was over to other party leaders and backbenchers to have their say on the content of the speech, with many focusing on brexit. the prime minister's gamble has backfired. she stumbled into no brexit negotiations on monday morning, regardless of her team equipped with no credible plan, no mandate and no function able government. i can see the prime ministerfloundering but government. i can see the prime minister floundering but when where is the stable government we were promised? we don't know the basis upon which we are negotiating brexit. i think have to be carried. what i think is an extremely sensible cross— party what i think is an extremely sensible cross—party majority that this house could easily command if we we re this house could easily command if we were able to produce and put into
place some process to achieve it. the prime minister has pursued and continues to pursue, that is clear from recent statements, that she seeks to pursue an extreme version of brexit, having failed to gain any mandate to do so. there is no plan to keep britain in the single market as the right honourable member mentioned earlier, or, indeed, the customs union. we will therefore seek to customs union. we will therefore seekto amend customs union. we will therefore seek to amend the queen's speech to add in membership of the single market and of the customs union. both the remain and leave campaigns agreed that we could not stay in the customs union and single market providing of good reasons. we want free trade agreements with other countries around the world and you cannot do that in the single market. two, they make it very clear that you have to pay budget contributions and accept freedom of movement which we have no intention of doing. it is one of the few things are both campaigns agreed about. we told the
british marker we would leave the customs union and the single market. we will work with the government over the course of the next period in parliament to ensure that we do deliver prosperity, do deliver greater spending on hills and education and that we do see an end to the dark tunnel of austerity. this queen '5 speech does not herald any hope for my constituents. this government and the once before, have knocked out the rungs of the ladder of opportunity for so many of my constituents. the reach for the first rung is now quite high. constituents. the reach for the first rung is now quite high! constituents. the reach for the first rung is now quite high. a new mp used the first day of the debate to make her maiden speech. many of my constituents work in financial services. other key 21st set three sectors like medical innovation, the tech centre in advanced manufacturing, also prioritise access to the single market and such access to the single market and such a ccess m ust access to the single market and such access must be underpinned by principles of mutual recognition based on trust and cooperation.
vicki ‘s ford making her maiden speech. i'm delighted to say that she and chris williamson, an mp until 2015 and has just been re—elected for labour, join me now. vicki, can we start with you? you have been keen. yourfirst out of the block to make your maiden speech. your background is as a member of the european parliament. did they give you an advantage? as a former mep, we have a huge amount of work to do in the next two years. the negotiations for brexit, we do not control the timing scale. we have 27 other countries we need to get agreement with and we need to get agreement with and we need to get on with the process. so i was quite keen to get started myself. it isa quite keen to get started myself. it is a little like standing on top of the diving board and looking down and thinking at some point i've got to make my first speech, why not do it straightaway? chris, a different experience for you because you were
in parliament until 2015. what do you think the two years away from westminster taught you ? what you think the two years away from westminster taught you? what did you learn from being away on what you learn from being away on what you learn from being defeated?m learn from being away on what you learn from being defeated? it was a bitter pill to swallow, i must say. lama bitter pill to swallow, i must say. i am a local lad and it was a great privilege to represent my home city. i suppose it taught me that you can never take anything for granted. even though you are a local individual, in that sense, a you are always subject to the vagaries of the democratic process. having gone through that process it does make you stronger. it does make you stronger and hopefully will make me a better representative this time. vicki, you mention brexit already and it was the big item in the queen ‘s speech. it seems that the position on brexit is being played out publicly in the conservative party. what do you think your former collea g u es party. what do you think your former colleagues in europe make of what's going on? if you look back at the white paper which came out before the election, it was clear about wanting to have a long—term
strategic partnership... but do they look at britain at the moment and think this isjust look at britain at the moment and think this is just chaos? look at britain at the moment and think this isjust chaos? no. i had meetings with many of them before the action and have continued to talk sense. this is never been done before, they want an orderly process , before, they want an orderly process, and they know it is in the interest of their economy as well as our economy to find that partnership. it is incredibly important that we get together, we get focused, if the labour party is serious about wanting to keep the access to the market as well, we need to work together. chris, let's bring you wind. what will labour do? will you disrupt or traded defeat the government at every single turn over the next two years? we want to make certain that the brexit process works for everyone. we do not want to see britain turned into a deregulated offshore tax haven. the government need to acknowledge that they do not have a majority and they need to recognise that theirjob is to represent the british people, not
just the faceless corporations. we are determined to make certain that the brexit is processed works for everyone. it is no good having a situation where we end up with a brexit that will enrich millionaires. we need to make sure we collaborate to create decent jobs for people. that is completely unreasonable. the conservative party and the government want to make sure this process works for ordinary people. for everybody. that is why we need to get working together and stop this rhetoric that somehow you say we are not focused on making it work. why can't you sign up? why can't you say we need to get this done, let's work together and get it through and not just done, let's work together and get it through and notjust vote down everything that comes our way? is if only life were that simple. i hope vicky's view prevails in the conservative party because they are clearly ridden on the issue of europe. but one just has to look at the conservative record over the last 40 years, where they have sought to deregulate easyis
the labour market, they have brought in the trade union act, we have seen rights of workers being diminished, living standards deteriorating for lots of ordinary people. brexit will give the chance for government to intervene. but how does holding up the parliamentary process achieve that? surely just achieves nothing, everything stops. but ball is very firmly in the government's court. we want to make sure this brexit process works for ordinary people and of the government signs up to that, there will not be a problem. stop scaremongering. the conservative party have published a plan for brexit, it does work for all the issues that you have mentioned, it does keep workers' rights, keeps consumers' rights, that will keep parts of our fire safety that are governed by european law. that has been published and set out by the conservative party and in the meantime, i have seen no detailfrom labour. just reply to that. it is unfair to say we are scaremongering.
we have seen the tories' record over the last 40 years, we know where they are coming from in terms of workers' rights, they have sought to support corporations and wealthy and powerful individuals at the expense of ordinary people. that has been their record. people only have to look at the record to see that. if they have had a damascene conversion, and delighted by that, we are more than happy to cooperate to ensure the brexit process works for ordinary people in this country. let's see. thanks so much. attention has focused on the cladding on the outside of the recently refurbished building. on thursday theresa may returned to the
commons to mps. the house should of course be careful on speculating what caused this fire. but as a precaution, the government has arranged to test cladding in all relevant tower blocks. mr speaker, shortly before i came to the chamber, i was informed that a number of these tests have come back as combustible. the relevant local authorities and local fire services have been informed and as i speak, they are taking all possible steps to ensure buildings are safe and to inform affected residents. mrs may repeated that the government response to the disaster had not been adequate. now, though, help was available, from health care to replacement driving licences and emergency funds. it is absolutely essential, mr speaker, that people understand they can keep the money they receive. these grants are not loans and they will not be expected to repay a single penny. i would like to reassure people that we will not use this tragic incident as a reason to carry out immigration checks on those involved or on those providing vital information to identify victims or those assisting with
the criminal investigation. at least 79 people are dead. it is both a tragedy and an outrage, because every single one of those deaths could and should have been avoided. the grenfell tower residents themselves have raised concerns about the lack of fire safety in the block. the grenfell action group have warned, and i quote, it is a truly terrifying thought, but the grenfell action group firmly believes that only a catastrophic event will expose the ineptitude and incompetence of our landlord, the kensington and chelsea tenant management organisation. the local mp said she spoke on behalf of a traumatised and frightened community with little trust in authority. she called for cuts in fire services to be reversed. "these people have quite literally our lives in their hands." in short, where is the funding? when brand—new properties
are empty for many years, does the prime minister think it is right to discuss with her honourable friend the chancellor of the exchequer changing the taxation regime so that as in new york city, these people face punitive taxation? my wife, principally, and i, mentored, employed and encouraged a young woman called khadija saye, who lost her life with her mother on the 20th floor of grenfell tower. she has talked about the public enquiry. but she understands that most people see this as a crime, and they know that rich and powerful organisations get away with crime. the response to the string of recent terror attacks is to be examined by the former independent reviewer of terrorism legislation, david anderson.
the recent attacks in london and manchester have claimed more than 30 lives. there was outrage after an attack on an ariana grande concert in manchester at the end of may, which happened as thousands of youngsters were streaming out of the venue. the suicide bomber blew himself up by detonating a device in the foyer of the manchester arena. the home secretary, amber rudd, told mps mr anderson would be reviewing the government's counterterrorism strategy, to make sure the police and the security services had the tools to keep people safe. we must do more to defeat ideologies of hatred, by turning people's minds away from violence and towards pluralistic british values. we must make sure that these ideologies are not able to flourish in the first place. in light of the terrorist attacks in london and manchester, britain's counterterrorism strategy will be reviewed, to make sure that the police and the security services have what they need to keep us safe. in addition to this, there will be a review of the handling of recent terror attacks, to look at whether lessons can be learned about our approach.
i'm pleased to announce that david anderson, former independent reviewer of counterterrorism legislation, will be overseeing it. i noted the actions the government has taken in the home secretary's statement, and largely on this side of the house, we support them. but we would warn against an emphasis on more legislation, rather than looking at the issue of resources. we will look at all the legislative proposals that the government brings forward on their merits, but we believe that resources is at the heart of this, not just new legislation. will she confirm that there is absolutely nothing in the human rights act, or the european convention and uphold the standards of this society without ripping up human rights? a point ms rudd did not answer directly, saying simply that the government would provide the resources necessary to keep the country safe.
now, back to the queen's speech, which was also being debated in the lords. the first speaker was a seasoned conservative and former cabinet minister. it looked like a good election for labour. indeed, they are behaving as if they had won it, despite being 56 seats behind the tories. and the new rapturous enthusiasm on the benches opposite forjeremy corbyn is only matched by their relief that he is not running the country. laughter peers, too, turned to brexit. i suspect there are a number of issues on which a conservative—dup government might not find all the mps of their respective parties in total agreement. should the house of commons send this house legislation that has been amended from the government's original intentions, then ministers should not seek to use your lordships' house to thwart the mandate of a democratically elected house. what makes this such an exceptional
time is that for perhaps only the second or third time in a couple of centuries, we find ourselves needing, as we come to brexit, to redefine our whole approach to foreign policy, and what our place should be in the world. trade deals, customs unions, people markets, financial passports, all are without use unless they are seen as a means to serve individuals, communities and our society. finally, is it time to rewrite the traditional oaths and affirmations made by mps at the start of a new parliament? every member has to pledge their allegiance to the queen, but this year, some have proved keen to customise their contributions. as a republican by conviction, and under protest, i swear by almighty god that i will be faithful and bear true allegiance to her majesty queen elizabeth, her heirs and successors, according to law, so help me god. i, richard burgon, was elected
by the people of leeds east to represent the interests of the people of leeds east, and therefore i make the following affirmation in order to enable me to do that. i, laura pidcock, was elected by the people of north west durham to represent their interests. i therefore take this affirmation in order to do that. layla moran is the new lib dem mp for oxford west and abingdon. i was surprised that i didn't have the option of pledging loyalty to the people, given that i've spent the last eight years, you know, campaigning to try and be an mp, to help raise the concerns of the people, then when you get to the point when you are swearing allegiance, you have the choice of either god or the queen. now, i don't have an issue with either, in fact i'm a greek orthodox in my background, i think the queen is a wonderful woman and does great work, but i'm here to represent the people, and that wasn't an option. i do solemnly, sincerely and truly declare and affirm... as a new mp, it's quite hard to know
which rules you can bend and which you can't. so, i think perhaps in future years, i will be able to ad lib a little more. you're quite concerned about getting it right or wrong at this point, so ijust did as i was told. and nonetheless, i mean, while it is broadly ceremonial, what you're doing, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, it's what i do while i'm here that matters, not who i've pledged allegiance to at the beginning. the new mp for oxford west and abingdon, layla moran, bringing us to the end of this edition of the programme. dojoinjoanna shin on monday night at 11 for another full round—up of the day at westminster. but for now, from me, alicia mccarthy, goodbye. there's no heat wave on offer this
weekend and for most of us it's actually going to be fairly cool.l little bit of rain in the forecast as well but not too much. there's a lot of cloud rolling across the uk right now, this is a weather front that's bringing spits and spots of rain. to the north of it, fairly chilly, so first things that of a morning temperatures around ten. to the south of that it is warm, 17 in norwich, around 16, 15 or 16 there counties. looks fairly cloudy across most of the uk first thing in the morning, bit of a breeze out there, the wind will be strongest in north—western scotland, gusts up to gale force wind so fairly chilly with showers, the best of the weather across east anglia and the south—east, 23. another blustery day across scotland on sunday with a few showers. overall across the uk the sunshine will come out so not a bad
day but i think feeling relatively fresh. whatever you're doing, have a great weekend. hello. thousands of people are being evacuated from five tower blocks in north london, so that urgent fire safety work can be carried out. the buildings in camden have the same type of cladding that contributed to a huge blaze last week at grenfell tower. at least 79 people are known to be dead or missing after the blaze and authorities are now looking at criminal offences including manslaughter. tom symonds reports. there was no warning, just a request. we need you to move out because we can't be sure you are safe. i just don't want to go now. i feel bad to just suddenly i have to leave my flat.