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House of Commons
Session 2004 - 05
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House of Commons Votes and Proceedings
Tuesday 23rd November 2004

The House met at twenty-five minutes past Eleven o'clock.


1    Message to attend Her Majesty,—A Message from Her Majesty was delivered by the Gentleman Usher of the Black Rod.

    Mr Speaker,

    The Queen commands this Honourable House to attend Her Majesty immediately, in the House of Peers.

    Accordingly, the Speaker, with the House, went up to attend Her Majesty:(And having returned;

    The Speaker resumed the Chair at half-past Two o'clock.

2    Speaker's Statement,—The Speaker made a Statement to the House, pursuant to the Resolution of 3rd November 2004.

3    Metropolitan Police,—Ordered, That the Commissioner of the Police of the Metropolis do take care that the passages through the streets leading to this House be kept free and open and that no obstruction be permitted to hinder the passage of Members to and from this House during the sitting of Parliament, or to hinder Members by any means in the pursuit of their Parliamentary duties in the Parliamentary Estate; and that the Serjeant at Arms attending this House do communicate this Order to the Commissioner.

4    Outlawries,—A Bill for the more effectual preventing Clandestine Outlawries was read the first time and ordered to be read a second time.

5    Standing Orders (Public Business),—Ordered, That the Standing Orders relating to Public Business be printed [No. 2].

6    Queen's Speech,—The Speaker reported Her Majesty's Speech and directed that it be entered in the Journal, as follows:

    My Lords and Members of the House of Commons

    My Government will continue to pursue policies which entrench economic stability and promote growth and prosperity.

    My Government will continue to reform the public services to ensure they provide more security and opportunity for all.

    My Government attaches the highest importance to extending educational opportunity so that all individuals can realise their full potential and the country can benefit from the talents of all its people. A Bill will be introduced to streamline the regime of school inspections to help raise standards for every child in every school.

    A Bill will be introduced to extend financial support for 16 to 19 year olds engaged in training and education.

    My Government recognises that we live in a time of global uncertainty with an increased threat from international terrorism and organised crime. Measures to extend opportunity will be accompanied by legislation to increase security for all.

    My Government will legislate to introduce an identity cards scheme, and will publish proposals to support the continuing fight against terrorism in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.

    Legislation will be introduced to establish the Serious Organised Crime Agency, and the powers the police and others have to fight crime will be strengthened. In particular, the Bill will introduce new measures to deal with harassment by animal rights extremists.

    My Government will introduce legislation to tackle the problem of drug abuse and the crime that flows from it, and will tackle the disorder and violence that can arise from the abuse of alcohol.

    My Government has always recognised the importance of clean and safe neighbourhoods. There will be further legislation to tackle anti-social behaviour.

    A Bill will be introduced to help to reduce further the numbers of those killed or injured on the roads.

    My Government will bring forward legislation to reduce re-offending by improving the management of offenders.

    A draft Bill will be published to tackle juvenile crime through more effective rehabilitation and sentencing.

    Legislation will be introduced to reform the criminal defence service, making better use of legal aid resources. A draft Bill will be published to support those with legitimate civil claims and reform the system of tribunals.

    A draft Bill will be published to introduce a new offence of corporate manslaughter.

    My Government will continue to take action to secure high levels of employment as it reforms the welfare state.

    My Government will continue to provide protection from discrimination and exploitation.

    Legislation will be introduced to combat discrimination in the provision of goods and services on the grounds of religion, as well as race, sex and disability. A single Commission for Equality and Human Rights will be established.

    My Government will maintain its commitment to social justice and legislate to increase the rights of disabled people.

    My Government will continue its reform of the National Health Service, offering more information, power and choice to patients, with equal access for all and free at the point of delivery.

    My Government will continue with legislation to provide a statutory framework for dealing with the financial, health and welfare decisions of those people who might lack capacity through mental illness or disability.

    Measures to reform the law on mental health will continue to undergo pre-legislative scrutiny.

    My Government believes that the welfare of children is paramount. Draft legislation will be published to safeguard the welfare of children in circumstances of parental separation and inter-country adoption.

    Consumer credit law will be updated to provide greater protection from unfair lending practices and create a fairer and more competitive credit market.

    My Government will also introduce a Bill to improve standards of animal welfare and increase the penalties for abuse.

    My Government will continue to modernise the constitution and institutions of our country to ensure they are equipped to meet the challenges of the future.

    Legislation will be brought forward to provide a modern and comprehensive framework for statutory inquiries into matters of public concern.

    My Government will continue to take forward in this session the constitutional legislation introduced last year.

    A Bill will be introduced to give effect to the Constitutional Treaty for the European Union, subject to a referendum.

    My Government is committed to reducing bureaucracy and the costs of Government, and to promoting efficiency. A Bill will be introduced to integrate the Inland Revenue and Her Majesty's Customs and Excise.

    My Government recognises the importance of modern, effective and safe transport to meet the needs of the public and the wider economy.

    Legislation will be introduced to streamline the organisation of the national rail system to improve performance.

    A Bill will be brought forward to authorise the construction of Crossrail.

    The Government will continue to legislate to allow local authorities to provide innovative and safe school transport.

    My Government believes that the voluntary sector is a great strength of this country. Charity law will be modernised so that a vibrant, diverse and independent charitable sector can continue to flourish with public confidence.

    My Government will introduce legislation to consolidate the distribution of lottery money to good causes.

    Proposals will be published to protect the nation's rural heritage, through draft legislation to modernise the management of common land, and to create new arrangements to deliver rural policy.

    Members of the House of Commons

    Estimates for the Public Services will be laid before you.

    My Lords and Members of the House of Commons

    My Government will continue to work closely with the devolved administrations in Scotland and Wales, and will work to bring about the conditions necessary for the restoration of the political institutions in Northern Ireland.

    Legislation will be introduced to provide the Welsh Assembly with a range of transport related powers.

    Other measures will be laid before you.

    The Duke of Edinburgh and I look forward to our visit to Canada. We look forward to receiving the state visit of His Excellency the President of the Republic of Korea and receiving the state visit of His Excellency the President of Italy. To mark the centenary of Norway's independence, we also look forward to receiving Their Majesties King Harald and Queen Sonja of Norway.

    My Government will assume the Presidency of the European Union in July and will use this opportunity to work towards building an increasingly prosperous and secure Europe.

    In addition to the European Union Presidency, my Government will hold the G8 Presidency in 2005, which will include working on the important issues of Africa and climate change.

    My Government will continue to work with partners around the world to prevent terrorism and the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, and the problems of drug smuggling and international crime.

    My Government will work to strengthen commitment on both sides of the Atlantic to the transatlantic relationship and to the continued effectiveness of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, and will work with the international community to strengthen the United Nations.

    My Government will continue to support the Government of Iraq to provide security and stability and ensure that elections can be held in January.

    My Government will continue to support efforts to build peace in the Middle East, to promote democratic reform and reduce conflict and extremism.

    My Lords and Members of the House of Commons

    I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may rest upon your counsels.

7    Queen's Speech (Motion for an Address),—A Motion was made, and the Question being proposed, That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, as follows:

    Most Gracious Sovereign,

    We, Your Majesty's most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled, beg leave to offer our humble thanks to Your Majesty for the Gracious Speech which Your Majesty has addressed to both Houses of Parliament—(Mr George Howarth);

    Ordered, That the Debate be now adjourned.—(Bridget Prentice.)

    Debate to be resumed to-morrow.

8    Adjournment,—Resolved, That this House do now adjourn.—(Bridget Prentice.)

    And accordingly, the House, having continued to sit till seven minutes to Nine o'clock, adjourned till to-morrow.

[Adjourned at 8.53 p.m.

Michael J. Martin


Mr Speaker will take the Chair at half-past Eleven o'clock.


Papers presented or laid upon the Table:

Papers presented by Her Majesty's Command and delivered to the Votes and Proceedings Office during the Prorogation of Parliament pursuant to Standing Order No. 158 (Presentation of command papers):

Monday 22nd November 2004

1    Treaty Series (No. 47, 2004),—Exchange of Notes, done at Kinshasa on 25th February and 9th June 2004, between the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo concerning Certain Commercial Debts (The United Kingdom/Democratic Republic of Congo Debt Agreement No. 10 (2002) Amendment) [Cm. 6400] [Mr Secretary Straw].

Papers presented or laid upon the Table on Tuesday 23rd November 2004:

Papers subject to Negative Resolution:

2    Income Tax,—Income Tax (Exemption of Minor Benefits) (Amendment) Regulations 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 3087), dated 23rd November 2004 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Dawn Primarolo].

3    Pensions,—Occupational Pension Schemes (Minimum Funding Requirement and Actuarial Valuations) Amendment Regulations 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 3031), dated 17th November 2004 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Mr Secretary Johnson].

Other Papers:

4    Air Force (Constitution),—Amendment List 14 to Air Publication 1269 The Royal Air Force—Manual of Medical Management and Administration (Eighth Edition) [by Act] [Mr Secretary Hoon].

5    Foreign Affairs,—Government Response to the Eighth Report from the Foreign Affairs Committee, Session 2003-04, on Foreign and Commonwealth Office Annual Report 2003-04 [by Command] [Cm. 6415] [Mr Secretary Straw].

6    Foreign and Commonwealth Office,—Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minute, dated 23rd November 2004, concerning the gifting of VIP-related equipment to Pakistan [by Command] [Mr Secretary Straw].

7    Government Trading Funds,—Treasury Minute, dated 19th November 2004, on the Driving Standards Agency Trading Fund [by Act] [Mr Paul Boateng].

8    National Audit,—Report by the Comptroller and Auditor General on Department of Health: Reforming NHS Dentistry: Ensuring effective management of risks [by Act]; to be printed [No. 25] [Clerk of the House].

9    Treaty Series (No. 46, 2004),—Rotterdam Convention, done at Rotterdam on 10th September 1998, on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade [by Command] [Cm. 6390] [Mr Secretary Straw].


Reports from Select Committees

Foreign Affairs,—Minutes of Evidence taken before the Foreign Affairs Committee [Foreign Policy Aspects of the War against Terrorism]; to be printed [No. 36-i] [Mr Donald Anderson].


In pursuance of Standing Order No. 4 (Chairmen's Panel) the Speaker nominated Mrs Irene Adams, Mr David Amess, Janet Anderson, Mr Nigel Beard, Miss Anne Begg, Mr Joe Benton, Sir John Butterfill, Mr Martin Caton, Mr David Chidgey, Derek Conway, Frank Cook, Mr James Cran, Mr John Cummings, Mr Eric Forth, Mr Roger Gale, Mr Win Griffiths, Mr Mike Hancock, Mr Jimmy Hood, Mr Kevin Hughes, Mr Alan Hurst, Mr Eric Illsley, Mr John McWilliam, Mr Bill O'Brien, Mr Edward O'Hara, Mr Bill Olner, Mr Peter Pike, Dame Marion Roe, Mr Jonathan Sayeed, Mr George Stevenson, David Taylor, Miss Ann Widdecombe and Sir Nicholas Winterton to be members of the Chairmen's Panel during this Session.


In the Votes and Proceedings for Wednesday 16th November 2004, in Appendix II, item 6(2) should have read as follows:

    Regulatory Reform,—Minutes of Evidence taken before the Regulatory Reform Committee [The Operation of the Regulatory Reform Act 2001]; to be printed [No 1272-i] [Mr Peter Pike].

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