Police Reform Bill [Lords]

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Column Number: 32

Mr. Denham: It is a matter for later debate, but it is an important issue. The potential powers of direction will be triggered by the performance of the police service—in other words, how well it is doing in respect of key indicators such as fear of crime, tackling burglary, and so forth. Enforcing something different from this place will not be a substantive issue: if the police service is catching criminals and the public is happy with the reduction of crime, no one will interfere. It is not an input-side mechanism. If, however, performance on dealing with persistent offenders is appalling and a code of practice on that matter is obviously being ignored, the existence of that code of practice would be a material consideration to be taken into account. The process is driven by what the public receives from the policing service. That is the starting point.

Mr. Paice: I am grateful for that helpful explanation. We have not yet had the crucial debate surrounding the issue: we are debating in a vacuum. I shall not press the amendment to a vote: it was mainly a probing amendment and the Minister has responded fully, albeit without assuaging all my concerns. I beg to ask leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Mr. Denham: Unless the Opposition parties want further debate, I believe that we have covered the relevant issues. Other important points have already been put on the record in another place, so I see no need to detain the Committee.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 2 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

        Further consideration adjourned.—[Mrs. McGuire.]

        Adjourned accordingly at twenty-two minutes past Eleven o'clock till this day at half-past Two o'clock.

Column Number: 33

        Stevenson, Mr. George ( Chairman)

        Baird, Vera

        Baker, Norman

        Brooke, Annette

        Challen, Mr.

        Denham, Mr.

        Follett, Barbara

        Gillan, Mrs.

        Hawkins, Mr.

        Irranca-Davies, Huw

        Johnson, Mr. Boris

        Jones, Mr. Kevan

Column Number: 34

        Kumar, Dr.

        Lucas, Ian

        MacDougall, Mr.

        McGuire, Mrs.

        Munn, Ms

        Osborne, Mr. George

        Paice, Mr.

        Prentice, Bridget

        Stinchcombe, Mr.

        Stoate, Dr.

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