HC Deb 15 December 1993 vol 234 cc1172-84

Again considered in Committee.

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

10.15 pm
Mr. Dewar

Before the interruption I was making one or two short points, and I do not intend to prolong them, but perhaps it is worth reminding those who were here then that I was praising the hon. Member for Bury St. Edmunds for the quality of his argument, but disagreeing with his conclusions. There is still time to put the matter right before we vote on clause stand part, but my brief message to Ministers is that no substantial case has yet been made to persuade us that the Bill should be supported or given a fair wind.

I shall briefly mention a couple of other specific matters. Regulations under the clause will be introduced at some point, and it is easy to miss the introduction of regulations in the House. As the Committee will know, to some extent we are in the hands of the Government. If I remember rightly, the regulations will be made under the negative resolution procedure, so we shall have to pray against them. In such cases we are not even guaranteed a debate —I am delighted to see that the Leader of the House is again loyally in his place to listen to the debate.

I am sure that the Minister of State will give us an assurance that he will use his good offices, although I realise that the matter is not entirely in his gift, to try to ensure that if there are prayers against any such orders—I promise him that there will be—there will be a debate, preferably on the Floor of the House.

It is not a partisan argument to say that we are being offered a package deal, and that the offset arrangements will be crucial. We have a breathing space between now and the introduction of the regulations, during which we can pursue the arguments not only with Ministers but with many of the interest groups involved. I suspect that the citizens advice bureaux and several of the welfare organisations will want to enter the lists.

I admit that we have all been doing a textual job on the nuances of what the CBI said, and what lay behind the typescript, but I am not always greatly enthused when someone says that their support for me amounts to a decision not to oppose me. That is probably a significant cooling, compared with the CBI's normal approach.

If there is a debate on the regulations, and it is held on the Floor of the House, no doubt the organisations themselves will have time to consult their members. I may regret my request; those organisations may even offer the Government warmer support, but at least the situation will have been clarified. Not only will we be able to measure their attitude to the Bill, but they may give us more clarification about the caveats, and about the reassurances that they want. It is not worth while for me to press the Minister too far, because I suspect that he is a prisoner of convention. He is a man of discretion, and I doubt whether he will kick over the traces.

As I said earlier, what worries the organisations is the thought that the Secretary of State, or the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, may have his way, and the big transfer will continue.

The Statutory Sick Pay Act 1991 got off to a standing start, we have suddenly seen the pace quicken with this Bill and we shall suddenly go down the road with the brakes off and the whole thing will be out of control. We need more clarification and more expert opinion in that area, as well on the subject of national insurance contributions.

Will the Minister say when the regulations are likely to appear? Presumably it will be well before April. After all, we are told that it is absolutely essential that we get the Bill through in the draconian fashion that has been chosen, because April approacheth and all sorts of preparations must be made. Presumably the same argument applies to the adjustments to employers' contributions and, therefore, I presume, we may begin anxiously looking for those regulations shortly after the turn of the year in January.

I know that the Under-Secretary, the hon. Member for Richmond, Yorks (Mr. Hague) was trying to be helpful by saying that the fears that I was suggesting—not endorsing —may arise over the change in the point at which entitlement of statutory sick pay ends and that my fears over the translation from retirement age to 65 were not well grounded. I am happy to accept his word and I hope that it is true. When the Minister replies, perhaps he will say something about the cost of that change.

In the financial memorandum, if I remember correctly, the cost to employers of that change in retirement age is estimated at about £10 million. That strikes me as a small sum, but it may reflect the fact that we expect fewer women between the age of 60 and 65 to be drawing retirement pension and statutory sick pay. That estimate lasts until 2020. One of the most extraordinary changes that we have seen in the labour market and in social practice has been the way in which women have become economically active. It is a welcome development. About 45 or 46 per cent. of the work force are women and in a number of areas —my hon. Friend the Member for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley (Mr. Foulkes) will be interested to know that Lothian is one of them—such as the Borders, which is good Liberal territory at the moment, the majority of the work force are women.

I expect that revolution to continue. If £10 million is the current estimate, is there any projection of that figure into the next century towards 2020? How will that affect the rather proud claim of the Minister that the offset makes the package better than neutral? I am not sure that that claim will hold, as I made clear at the beginning. Over the next 27 years, because of inflation, or because of the social change, there may be a real escalation in that figure. It may not be of interest to the Committee, but it is to me.

The Minister should also clear up the vexed question raised by my hon. Friend the Member for East Lothian (Mr. Home Robertson), who has temporarily left the Committee and who talked as a small employer in the field of agriculture. Perhaps "the field of agriculture" is an unfortunate turn of phrase.

There has been a lot of talk about Peking flu. The Secretary of State cracked a little joke, picking up the Foreign Secretary's admonishment of those precious enough to try to pronounce Beijing in a Chinese accent. I am sure that my hon. Friend the Member for Durham, North (Mr. Radice) has travelled there on many occasions and knows the correct pronunciation. Like the Secretary of State, I will settle for Peking.

If an employer has a very small work force who are struck down by Peking flu or some other disaster, it can have substantial financial consequences in terms of statutory sick pay. It is a little like the old argument, with which Ministers will be familiar, about the effect on small firms of responsibility for maternity leave when a key employee cannot be replaced from the existing work force.

The Committee would appreciate a word or two about the stresses and strains on small firms, given the fact that about 75 to 80 per cent. of statutory sick pay relates to loss of work in the initial four-week period and must, therefore, be met entirely by the small firms. As the Committee will know, at present it is a six-week period and firms pay 20 per cent., if I remember rightly. It is now to be four weeks, but it is surprising how little difference in lost time the extension of four to six weeks makes. The vast majority of cases will still fall within that period and will have to be met entirely by the small firms. Before we move on, the Minister should make an effort to reassure us on that point.

I cannot resist saying that the Peking flu has been dramatically if rather quaintly illustrated in the life of the House of Commons in the past week or two to the hon. Members who have examined the beautifully printed letter from the manufacturer of the House of Commons mints, explaining that more than one third of its work force has been struck by the Peking flu. The supply of mints—not that to hon. Members but to those who are the ultimate recipients of the mint road that leads back to most of our constituencies—will therefore be badly affected. That struck me as a rather homely metaphor for the type of problem that can hit an aristocratic, but, I suspect, comparatively small firm with whose products at least we are all tremendously familiar. The Minister should deal with such matters because they warrant his attention.

I conclude, because I believe that one or two hon. Members wish to speak. I assure you, Mr. Lofthouse, that I shall not intervene again in the clause stand part debate. My closing point is that I do not feel especially partisan in arguing the case as I have done.

There are occasions when I have the impression that I am on the front line in a trench on the Somme in about 1916 and probably as likely to make progress. On this occasion, however, I do not feel like that, because I know that many Conservative Members—perhaps those who are not in the Chamber now, although I know that they exist—are very worried about the principle that was established in 1990 and that they will certainly not like the way in which it has been extended.

I have already mentioned quotations from the hon. Member for Batley and Spen (Mrs. Peacock) and, above all, the hon. Member for Beverley (Mr. Cran) who, to be fair, has a distinguished record of independence of thought on Europe, which I am sure has the complete approval of the Secretary of State for Social Security. I suspect that his thinking has in no way displeased the Secretary of State who, I hope, will consider equally favourably the worries about what happened in 1990, which were so robustly expressed by the hon. Member for Beverley. Of course, the hon. Gentleman understimated the energy with which the Secretary of State would continue the demolition exercise on the state's responsibility for statutory sick pay.

A further quotation that happens to come to hand is that from the hon. Member for Newark (Mr. Alexander) who said: The companies in my constituency are worried because the principle that the Government should reimburse companies 100 per cent. has been broken. At that time, we were reducing the reimbursement rate from 100 per cent. to 80 per cent. He explained, beyond argument, that the principle of 100 per cent. reimbursement was being broken. He said: Companies pay the costs of administration and they are perfectly happy to do so"— I am not sure about that— but 100 per cent. reimbursement is necessary because the principle is that companies are not in control of sickness—they do not cause their employees' sickness."—[Official Report, 26 November 1990; Vol. 181, c. 668.] 10.30 pm

I deliberately read out that extract because it reflects one of the important subjects of debate and dispute between us. I could have quoted the words of Conservative Members who merely condemn what the Bill stands for, but the hon. Member for Newark has expressed a view that I believe Ministers contest. The essence of the Government's case is that employers can do something about the sickness of their employees. If employers are brutal, they can get rid of their sick employees. Employers could buy flu vaccine on a massive scale, as one Minister suggested earlier. The general thrust of the argument was that vaccine manufacturers might be one of the few growth sectors in the British economy.

I accept that good employers can do something to help the problem of sickness at work. I do not accept that they need the reform to galvanise themselves into action. Even though improvement is possible, the hon. Member for Newark is right to say that many of the problems are not created by or in the control of the employer. Different health statistics in different parts of the country are largely related to economic depravation, as well as other factors. If one operates in a community that has been victimised by economic history and circumstance, it is difficult to establish the sort of savings envisaged by Ministers who advocate the clause.

For a variety of reasons, I do not believe that the onus of proof has been discharged by those on whom it lies. Unless the Minister of State can do much more, in his patient and careful way, to remove our doubts, the clause will not measure up to the standards that the House of Commons should apply when making a judgment on what should be allowed to pass on to the statute book.

Mr. Terry Rooney (Bradford, North)

I have listened to the debate and read the documentation on the Bill that the Government have published, and the calculations on the cost—or in this case benefit—to industry are different from those submitted with the Statutory Sick Pay Act 1991. It was then suggested that there would be a cost to industy of £100 million. There seems to be a gap of about £300 million. Perhaps the Ministers can have a quick chat while they are sitting next to each other and find out where the difference in the calculations occurs.

It is being suggested that employers can improve their employees' absence record by better management techniques, but it is also being suggested that the reduction in the period to four weeks for 100 per cent. compensation for small employers will benefit them. The two suggestions are contradictory. In the past three years of deep recession, large employers may have tolerated higher sickness levels because they were a means of coping with a decrease in production requirements, but exactly the opposite is true of small employers.

In the food industry, where it is vital for people to have 100 per cent. good health, the incentive to small employers should be to ensure that their employees stay off work for the maximum period necessary to allow them to recover. Sick employees must not be allowed to affect the food production. Environmental health officers would have much to say about any pressure being placed on management to ensure that sick employees in the food industry return to work too quickly.

The impact of the Bill will vary according to the size of the employer and the way in which the employer operates. Large employers such as banks, with, say 100 people per branch, may be able to cope with any level of absence for a short period, whereas firms engaged in a continuous process cannot cope with anyone being off work. The Bill will have different impacts on different sections of the economy.

Let me cite one industry in what is still classed as our manufacturing sector. Some 25,000 companies in Britain are engaged in the printing industry, which is the third largest employer among those constituting our declining manufacturing base. Of those 25,000 companies, some 200 have more than 1,000 employees, and 19,500 have fewer than 10 employees. Those small firms are engaged in a continuous process—if the employees are not there. the work simply does not get done and cannot be left to somebody else. What will be the impact of the Bill for such employers? They will not only be worse off to the tune of 80 per cent. of the costs of statutory sick pay for the first four weeks; they will also incur in full the additional burden of having to take on temporary employees—usually through agencies and usually at premium rates of pay.

One of the problems that we face in dealing with the Bill in such a short time is that we cannot give full consideration and full weight to those issues. Instead, we have to rely on dubious evidence submitted to the Committee by the Secretary of State.

The only other point—[Interruption.] Does my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett) want to say something? If so, he should get up and say it. As I was saying—[Interruption.] I have again been interrupted from a sedentary position, Mr. Morris.

The Chairman of Ways and Means (Mr. Michael Morris)

Order. If the hon. Gentleman is lost for words, he should sit down.

Mr. Rooney

Sometimes one's friends are not at one's side, Mr. Morris.

The impact of clause 1 on a given sector, size or class of employer is very difficult to assess.

A further difficulty with primary social security legislation is that its real impact is felt through regulations that appear some months subsequently, and those regulations cannot be amended—only accepted or rejected. We can only speculate—time alone will tell—but it seems to me that errors in the calculations and the falseness of the philosophy behind the Bill will result in an significant cost to business. I note that the business compliance cost assessment contained in the Bill gives no indication of what the cost will be; it refers only to the savings. I think that the cost will be enormous. That will have implications for the employment prospects of people who are currently unemployed. It will also have employment consequences for those of less than perfect health. A little more time should be devoted to that issue.

Mr. Scott

I was amazed by two aspects of the debate. The first was the flood of personal affection that seemed to flow across the House in my direction. The second was much more substantial: I was astonished that the Opposition, who have complained bitterly about the time allocated for the discussion of the Bill, should have thought it necessary to take 15 minutes out to contest the suspension of the 10 o'clock rule. That seems to me to be a rum set of priorities.

The hon. Member for Glasgow, Garscadden (Mr. Dewar) asked about regulations. We estimate that the regulations will be ready to be discussed in February. Of course I will make a commitment in that context. My right hon. Friend the Leader of the House was also present while the hon. Gentleman was making that point, and my right hon. Friend and I will stay in touch with the hon. Gentleman on it.

As I listened to the debate, I found it very difficult to detect any arguments that had not already been dealt with by my colleagues on the Front Bench in previous debates, but there are two points that I want to mention briefly. The first relates to the CBI and business reaction to the proposals.

Anyone who has read the CBI's brief knows that it says: The CBI does not wish to oppose the SSP Bill. The CBI may make detailed points on behalf of its members, but it does not oppose the Bill. Given the record of Conservative and Labour Administrations, anyone in an organisation of or for people involved in business and commerce would be out of their mind to regard Labour's record as anything other than lamentable. Right up to and including the last Budget, the Government have shown their concern for business, and for small businesses in particular. We have done so most recently with our deregulation drive to lift burdens off the backs of business, and we have more than compensated employers for the costs that they will incur as a result of reductions in national insurance contributions.

Mr. Foulkes

I was one of the hon. Members who said nice things about the Minister, so I am grateful to him for giving way. As my hon. Friend the Member for Glasgow, Garscadden (Mr. Dewar) said, all the substantive points that the CBI made were against the Bill, but, because it is a Conservative organisation, it believes that it must be loyal. The Minister of State said that the Government support small businesses and that small businesses support the Bill. He is 100 per cent. wrong, because the Federation of Small Businesses therefore urges Members of Parliament to reject this Bill". Even the Minister, despite all his sweet talk and silver tongue, cannot counteract that.

Mr. Scott

What I cannot counteract is the understanding of those who represent small businesses, who, reading the proposed plans for statutory sick pay, were unaware of the generosity of the Government's proposals for national insurance contributions, which have been slanted to help small businesses.

Mr. Flynn

Will the Minister give way?

Mr. Scott

No, I shall not give way.

I want to deal with one aspect of the Bill that has been mentioned a number of times and for which I feel a direct responsibility—the employment of people with disabilities. There is no evidence that employers discriminate against disabled people in their employment practices. As at least one Opposition Member acknowledged, the opposite tends to be true: employers are becoming increasingly aware of the skills and abilitiest that disabled people bring to their enterprises. Evidence overwhelmingly shows that disabled people take less time off because of sickness and are more committed to making a contribution to the success of businesses. The experience of the Employers Forum on Disability in encouraging employers to have positive attitudes to the employment of disabled people is spreading widely and is much to be commended.

The hon. Member for Newport, West (Mr. Flynn) briefly mentioned the employment of disabled civil servants. More disabled people are joining the civil service. I recognise the difficulties that this place presents to disabled civil servants. We have commissioned an audit of the Palace of Westminster and its accessibility to disabled people, and the report will be considered by the House authorities in the near future. I commend the clause to the Committee.

Mr. Bradley

I thank the Minister for his assurances about the regulations. We are glad to learn that he will keep the Opposition Front Bench informed of their progress, and that we shall have an opportunity to debate them—on the Floor of the House, I hope.

I find it extraordinary that the Minister should be so sure of the support of small businesses. He is living in the past. There is evidence that small businesses, certainly those in the north-west and Manchester, are turning more and more to Labour and its policies. The fact that the CBI merely said that it did not oppose the Bill is testimony to that. I think that this is the first time that that organisation has not shouted its full support for the Government from the chimney tops; the Government are incredibly complacent if they take any comfort from what it has said on this occasion.

10.45 pm

I am especially saddened and surprised by the Minister's complacency about the position of people with disabilities. He may well be right in saying that when disabled people are in employment, they are recognised as hard working, diligent and valuable members of the work force; indeed, I cited evidence to support that view. However, with millions of people unemployed, it is now increasingly difficult for anyone to get work. Following these measures, and future measures involving incapacity benefit, fewer people with disabilities will be able to gain employment. I hope that the Minister will think again.

According to Lorna Reith of the Disability Alliance, we are deeply concerned that making employers take on more of the cost of SSP will make them even more reluctant to employ disabled people. There is substantial evidence available that disabled people face discrimination in the job market. This will only add to their difficulties. That sums up what the Opposition have been saying.

Mr. Ted Rowlands (Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney)

What will happen to Remploy, which has an especially high proportion of disabled employees? Will there be special provision for that company, which will inevitably experience more incidence of sickness? [HON. MEMBERS: "Why?"] The company, by its very nature, has a higher proportion of disabled employees.

Mr. Bradley

That is exactly the sort of point that we should have liked to discuss in detail in Standing Committee, had we been given the time. Clearly employers such as Remploy will experience difficulties.

Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman (Lancaster)


Dr. Spink


Mr. Bradley

I will not give way. I am trying to finish my speech.

Disability organisations throughout the country have overwhelmingly recognised the difficulties that people with disabilities will experience in trying to get into the job market. That is why the Opposition wish to divide the Committee.

Dame Elaine Kellett-Bowman

I had not intended to speak, but I cannot let what has been said go unchallenged. Opposition Members are confusing sickness with disability. People with disabilities have an outstandingly good record of faithful attendance. Remploy does not have a high degree of sickness. This is outrageous: Opposition Members are impairing disabled people's chances of getting jobs.

Mr. Rooney

For several hours, Ministers have said that there is a very generous settlement for small businesses in respect of the changes proposed in the Bill. Will a Minister confirm to the Committee that small businesses are currently reimbursed 80 per cent. of the cost of statutory sick pay in the first four weeks, but in future they will receive nothing?

Question put, That the clause stand part of the Bill:

The Committee divided: Ayes 297, Noes 226.

Division No. 45] [10.49 pm
Ainsworth, Peter (East Surrey) Atkinson, David (Bour'mouth E)
Alexander, Richard Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)
Alison, Rt Hon Michael (Selby) Baker, Nicholas (Dorset North)
Allason, Rupert (Torbay) Banks, Matthew (Southport)
Amess, David Banks, Robert (Harrogate)
Arbuthnot, James Bates, Michael
Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham) Batiste, Spencer
Arnold, Sir Thomas (Hazel Grv) Bellingham, Henry
Ashby, David Bendall, Vivian
Aspinwall, Jack Beresford, Sir Paul
Biffen, Rt Hon John Gallie, Phil
Blackburn, Dr John G. Gardiner, Sir George
Bonsor, Sir Nicholas Garnier, Edward
Booth, Hartley Gill, Christopher
Boswell, Tim Gillan, Cheryl
Bottomley, Peter (Eltham) Goodson-Wickes, Dr Charles
Bottomley, Rt Hon Virginia Gorman, Mrs Teresa
Bowden, Andrew Gorst, John
Bowis, John Grant, Sir A. (Cambs SW)
Boyson, Rt Hon Sir Rhodes Greenway, Harry (Ealing N)
Brandreth, Gyles Greenway, John (Ryedale)
Brazier, Julian Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth, N)
Bright, Graham Grylls, Sir Michael
Brooke, Rt Hon Peter Gummer, Rt Hon John Selwyn
Brown, M. (Brigg & Cl'thorpes) Hague, William
Browning, Mrs. Angela Hamilton, Rt Hon Archie (Epsom)
Bruce, Ian (S Dorset) Hampson, Dr Keith
Budgen, Nicholas Hannam, Sir John
Burns, Simon Hargreaves, Andrew
Burt, Alistair Harris, David
Butcher, John Haselhurst, Alan
Butler, Peter Hawkins, Nick
Butterfill, John Hawksley, Warren
Carlisle, John (Luton North) Hayes, Jerry
Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln) Heald, Oliver
Carrington, Matthew Heathcoat-Amory, David
Carttiss, Michael Hendry, Charles
Cash, William Hicks, Robert
Channon, Rt Hon Paul Higgins, Rt Hon Sir Terence L.
Chapman, Sydney Hill, James (Southampton Test)
Churchill, Mr Hogg, Rt Hon Douglas (G'tham)
Clappison, James Horam, John
Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford) Hordern, Rt Hon Sir Peter
Clarke, Rt Hon Kenneth (Ruclif) Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey Howarth, Alan (Strat'rd-on-A)
Coe, Sebastian Howell, Rt Hon David (G'dford)
Colvin, Michael Howell, Sir Ralph (N Norfolk)
Congdon, David Hunt, Rt Hon David (Wirral W)
Coombs, Anthony (Wyre For'st) Hunt, Sir John (Ravensbourne)
Coombs, Simon (Swindon) Hunter, Andrew
Cope, Rt Hon Sir John Jack, Michael
Cormack, Patrick Jenkin, Bernard
Couchman, James Jessel, Toby
Cran, James Johnson Smith, Sir Geoffrey
Currie, Mrs Edwina (S D'by'ire) Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)
Curry, David (Skipton & Ripon) Jones, Robert B. (W Hertfdshr)
Davis, David (Boothferry) Jopling, Rt Hon Michael
Day, Stephen Kellett-Bowman, Dame Elaine
Deva, Nirj Joseph Key, Robert
Dickens, Geoffrey Kilfedder, Sir James
Dicks, Terry King, Rt Hon Tom
Dorrell, Stephen Kirkhope, Timothy
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord James Knapman, Roger
Dover, Den Knight, Mrs Angela (Erewash)
Duncan, Alan Knight, Greg (Derby N)
Duncan-Smith, Iain Knight, Dame Jill (Bir'm E'st'n)
Dunn, Bob Knox, Sir David
Durant, Sir Anthony Kynoch, George (Kincardine)
Dykes, Hugh Lait, Mrs Jacqui
Eggar, Tim Lang, Rt Hon Ian
Emery, Rt Hon Sir Peter Lawrence, Sir Ivan
Evans, David (Welwyn Hatfield) Legg, Barry
Evans, Jonathan (Brecon) Leigh, Edward
Evans, Nigel (Ribble Valley) Lennox-Boyd, Mark
Evans, Roger (Monmouth) Lester, Jim (Broxtowe)
Evennett, David Lidington, David
Fabricant, Michael Lilley, Rt Hon Peter
Fairbairn, Sir Nicholas Lloyd, Peter (Fareham)
Fenner, Dame Peggy Lord, Michael
Field, Barry (Isle of Wight) Luff, Peter
Fishburn, Dudley Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
Forman, Nigel MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Forsyth, Michael (Stirling) MacKay, Andrew
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman Maclean, David
Fox, Dr Liam (Woodspring) McLoughlin, Patrick
Fox, Sir Marcus (Shipley) McNair-Wilson, Sir Patrick
Freeman, Rt Hon Roger Madel, David
French, Douglas Maitland, Lady Olga
Fry, Peter Malone, Gerald
Gale, Roger Mans, Keith
Marland, Paul Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield)
Marlow, Tony Soames, Nicholas
Marshall, John (Hendon S) Speed, Sir Keith
Marshall, Sir Michael (Arundel) Spencer, Sir Darek
Martin, David (Portsmouth S) Spicer, Michael (S Worcs)
Mates, Michael Spink, Dr Robert
Mawhinney, Dr Brian Spring, Richard
Mellor, Rt Hon David Sproat, Iain
Merchant, Piers Squire, Robin (Hornchurch)
Milligan, Stephen Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John
Mills, Iain Steen, Anthony
Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling) Stephen, Michael
Mitchell, Sir David (Hants NW) Stern, Michael
Moate, Sir Roger Stewart, Allan
Monro, Sir Hector Streeter, Gary
Moss, Malcolm Sumberg, David
Needham, Richard Sweeney, Walter
Nelson, Anthony Sykes, John
Neubert, Sir Michael Tapsell, Sir Peter
Newton, Rt Hon Tony Taylor, John M. (Solihull)
Nicholls, Patrick Taylor, Sir Teddy (Southend, E)
Nicholson, David (Taunton) Temple-Morris, Peter
Nicholson, Emma (Devon West) Thomason, Roy
Norris, Steve Thompson, Sir Donald (C'er V)
Onslow, Rt Hon Sir Cranley Thompson, Patrick (Norwich N)
Oppenheim, Phillip Thornton, Sir Malcolm
Ottaway, Richard Thurnham, Peter
Page, Richard Townend, John (Bridlington)
Paice, James Townsend, Cyril D. (Bexl'yh'th)
Patnick, Irvine Tracey, Richard
Patten, Rt Hon John Tredinnick, David
Pattie, Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey Trend, Michael
Pawsey, James Trotter, Neville
Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth Twinn, Dr Ian
Pickles, Eric Vaughan, Sir Gerard
Porter, Barry (Wirral S) Viggers, Peter
Porter, David (Waveney) Waldegrave, Rt Hon William
Portillo, Rt Hon Michael Walden, George
Powell, William (Corby) Walker, Bill (N Tayside)
Rathbone, Tim Waller, Gary
Redwood, Rt Hon John, Ward, John
Renton, Rt Hon Tim Wardle, Charles (Bexhill)
Richards, Rod Waterson, Nigel
Riddick, Graham Watts, John
Robathan, Andrew Wells, Bowen
Roberts, Rt Hon Sir Wyn Whitney, Ray
Robertson, Raymond (Ab'd'n S) Whittingdale, John
Robinson, Mark (Somerton) Widdecombe, Ann
Roe, Mrs Marion (Broxbourne) Wiggin, Sir Jerry
Rowe, Andrew (Mid Kent) Willetts, David
Rumbold, Rt Hon Dame Angela Wilshire, David
Ryder, Rt Hon Richard Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Sackville, Tom Winterton, Nicholas (Macc'f'ld)
Sainsbury, Rt Hon Tim Wolfson, Mark
Scott, Rt Hon Nicholas Wood, Timothy
Shaw, Sir Giles (Pudsey) Young, Rt Hon Sir George
Shepherd, Colin (Hereford)
Shersby, Michael Tellers for the Ayes:
Sims, Roger Mr. Robert G. Hughes and
Skeet, Sir Trevor Mrs. Derek Conway.
Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)
Abbott, Ms Diane Benn, Rt Hon Tony
Adams, Mrs Irene Bennett, Andrew F.
Ainger, Nick Benton, Joe
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE) Berry, Dr. Roger
Allen, Graham Betts, Clive
Anderson, Ms Janet (Ros'dale) Blair, Tony
Armstrong, Hilary Blunkett, David
Ashton, Joe Boateng, Paul
Austin-Walker, John Boyes, Roland
Banks, Tony (Newham NW) Bradley, Keith
Barnes, Harry Bray, Dr Jeremy
Barron, Kevin Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)
Battle, John Burden, Richard
Bayley, Hugh Byers, Stephen
Beckett, Rt Hon Margaret Caborn, Richard
Beggs, Roy Callaghan, Jim
Beith, Rt Hon A. J. Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V) Jackson, Glenda (H'stead)
Canavan, Dennis Jackson, Helen (Shef'ld, H)
Cann, Jamie Janner, Greville
Chisholm, Malcolm Jones, Barry (Alyn and D'side)
Clapham, Michael Jones, Ieuan Wyn (Ynys Môn)
Clark, Dr David (South Shields) Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)
Clarke, Eric (Midlothian) Jones, Lynne (B'ham S O)
Clarke, Tom (Monklands W) Jones, Martyn (Clwyd, SW)
Clelland, David Jones, Nigel (Cheltenham)
Clwyd, Mrs Ann Jowell, Tessa
Coffey, Ann Keen, Alan
Cohen, Harry Kennedy, Jane (Lpool Brdgn)
Cook, Frank (Stockton N) Khabra, Piara S.
Corbett, Robin Kilfoyle, Peter
Corbyn, Jeremy Leighton, Ron
Corston, Ms Jean Lestor, Joan (Eccles)
Cousins, Jim Lewis, Terry
Cox, Tom Litherland, Robert
Cryer, Bob Livingstone, Ken
Cummings, John Llwyd, Elfyn
Cunliffe, Lawrence Loyden, Eddie
Cunningham, Jim (Covy SE) McAllion, John
Cunningham, Rt Hon Dr John McAvoy, Thomas
Dafis, Cynog McCartney, Ian
Darling, Alistair McCrea, Rev William
Davidson, Ian Macdonald, Calum
Davies, Bryan (Oldham C'tral) McKelvey, William
Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli) Mackinlay, Andrew
Davies, Ron (Caerphilly) McLeish, Henry
Davis, Terry (B'ham, H'dge H'I) McMaster, Gordon
Denham, John McWilliam, John
Dewar, Donald Madden, Max
Dixon, Don Mahon, Alice
Donohoe, Brian H. Mandelson, Peter
Dowd, Jim Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Dunnachie, Jimmy Martlew, Eric
Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth Meacher, Michael
Eagle, Ms Angela Michael, Alun
Eastham, Ken Michie, Bill (Sheffield Heeley)
Enright, Derek Michie, Mrs Ray (Argyll Bute)
Etherington, Bill Milburn, Alan
Evans, John (St Helens N) Miller, Andrew
Fatchett, Derek Moonie, Dr Lewis
Faulds, Andrew Morgan, Rhodri
Field, Frank (Birkenhead) Morley, Elliot
Fisher, Mark Morris, Rt Hon A. (Wy'nshawe)
Flynn, Paul Morris, Rt Hon J. (Aberavon)
Forsythe, Clifford (Antrim S) Mowlam, Marjorie
Foulkes, George Mudie, George
Fraser, John Mullin, Chris
Gapes, Mike Murphy, Paul
Garrett, John Oakes, Rt Hon Gordon
Gerrard, Neil O'Brien, Michael (N W'kshire)
Gilbert, Rt Hon Dr John O'Hara, Edward
Godman, Dr Norman A. Olner, William
Godsiff, Roger Orme, Rt Hon Stanley
Golding, Mrs Llin Parry, Robert
Graham, Thomas Patchett, Terry
Grant, Bernie (Tottenham) Pickthall, Colin
Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S) Pike, Peter L.
Grocott, Bruce Pope, Greg
Gunnell, John Powell, Ray (Ogmore)
Hall, Mike Prentice, Ms Bridget (Lew'm E)
Hanson, David Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Hardy, Peter Prescott, John
Hattersley, Rt Hon Roy Primarolo, Dawn
Heppell, John Purchase, Ken
Hill, Keith (Streatham) Quin, Ms Joyce
Hinchliffe, David Radice, Giles
Hogg, Norman (Cumbernauld) Randall, Stuart
Home Robertson, John Raynsford, Nick
Hoon, Geoffrey Redmond, Martin
Howells, Dr. Kim (Pontypridd) Reid, Dr John
Hoyle, Doug Rendel, David
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N) Roche, Mrs. Barbara
Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen N) Rogers, Allan
Hughes, Roy (Newport E) Rooney, Terry
Hughes, Simon (Southwark) Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)
Hutton, John Ross, William (E Londonderry)
Ingram, Adam Rowlands, Ted
Ruddock, Joan Tipping, Paddy
Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert Turner, Dennis
Short, Clare Walker, Rt Hon Sir Harold
Simpson, Alan Walley, Joan
Skinner, Dennis Wareing, Robert N
Smith, Andrew (Oxford E) Watson, Mike
Smith, C. (Isl'ton S & F'sbury) Wicks, Malcolm
Smith, Rt Hon John (M'kl'ds E) Williams, Rt Hon Alan (Sw'n W)
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent) Winnick, David
Snape, Peter Wise, Audrey
Spearing, Nigel Worthington, Tony
Spellar, John Wray, Jimmy
Squire, Rachel (Dunfermline W) Wright, Dr Tony
Steinberg, Gerry Young, David (Bolton SE)
Stevenson, George
Stott, Roger Tellers for the Noes:
Strang, Dr. Gavin Mr. Jack Thompson and
Taylor, Rt Hon John D. (Strgfd) Mr. Eric Illsley.

Question accordingly agreed to.

Clause 1 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

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