Votes – Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill

On 27th November 2018 the House of Lords considered amendments to the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill [HL]. Two bishops took part in a vote on an amendment from Baroness Watkins of Tavistock: Continue reading “Votes – Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill”

Bishop of Rochester supports Bill to improve fitness of homes for human habitation

On 23rd November 2018 the House of Lords considered a Private member’s Bill from Lord Best, the ‘Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Bill’. The Bishop of Rochester, Rt Revd James Langstaff, spoke in its support:

The Lord Bishop of Rochester: My Lords, I too am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Best, for his advocacy of this Bill in your Lordships’ House and for his customary detailed and lucid comments in introducing the debate. I also salute the indefatigable work of the Member for Westminster North, who has already been referred to, and look forward to what we all hope will be a positive response to this debate from the Minister.

Like many others, I am very supportive of any efforts to improve and assure the quality of accommodation in the rental sector, whether that be individual, corporate or social landlords. I did, however, have a slight moment of hesitation about speaking on this, as I became conscious that the Church of England, in its various national and local corporate guises, is a not inconsiderable landlord. Continue reading “Bishop of Rochester supports Bill to improve fitness of homes for human habitation”

Bishop of Carlisle says more should be done to encourage voluntarily organ donation before moving to an opt-out system

Carlisle141217bOn the 23rd November 2018 the Bishop of Carlisle, the Rt Revd James Newcome spoke in the second reading debate of the Organ Donation (Deemed Consent) Bill. The Bishop supported the intentions behind the Bill, but pressed for more action first to increase voluntary donations, including engaging the BAME community, increasing specialist nurses and supporting potential donors though creation of a transplant pathway.

The Lord Bishop of Carlisle: My Lords, the Church of England is wholly committed to both the principle and the practice of organ donation, believing as it does that giving oneself and one’s possessions voluntarily for the well-being of others and without compulsion is a Christian duty and that organ donation is a striking example of that.

Continue reading “Bishop of Carlisle says more should be done to encourage voluntarily organ donation before moving to an opt-out system”

Votes – Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill

On 21st November 2018 the House of Lords considered amendments to the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill [HL]. Two bishops took part in a vote on an amendment from Baroness Barker:
Continue reading “Votes – Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill”

Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill – Bishop of Newcastle raises freedom of religion and expression

On Tuesday 9th October 2018 the House of Lords debated the Government’s Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill. The Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Christine Hardman, spoke in the debate to seek assurances on freedom of thought and expression: 

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: My Lords, first I too want to say how much I am looking forward to the maiden speeches of the noble and learned Lord, Lord Garnier, and the noble Lord, Lord Tyrie. The noble ​Lord, Lord Tyrie, will be well acquainted with these Benches, having worked closely with my most reverend brother the Archbishop of Canterbury on the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards, which the noble Lord so ably chaired.

In opening this debate, the Minister spoke powerfully and movingly about the terrible consequences of terror, the effect on people’s lives, the suffering that is lifelong for people. It is in this context that I broadly welcome the Bill. I certainly recognise the difficulty of drafting and steering this kind of legislation. It is to walk something of a tightrope, as described by the noble Lord, Lord Marks. The current national security situation is complex, as is seen so sharply in our news headlines this morning. At Second Reading, I would like us to stay alert to that tightrope we walk, to proportionality and, perhaps especially, to the danger of unintended consequences. Continue reading “Counter-Terrorism and Border Security Bill – Bishop of Newcastle raises freedom of religion and expression”

Press notice: Bishop’s Bill calls on MPs to add mothers to marriage certificates

The following appeared on the Church of England website on 24th July 2018:

The House of Lords today passed a bill from the Bishop of St Albans to end the historic inequality of excluding mothers’ names from marriage certificates. The Registration of Marriage Bill, which would also introduce electronic marriage registers, passed its final stage in the House of Lords today and now moves to the House of Commons to be considered by MPs. It is the first time a Bishop’s Private Member’s Bill has proceeded to the House of Commons in more than 20 years. Continue reading “Press notice: Bishop’s Bill calls on MPs to add mothers to marriage certificates”