Bishop of Chester responds to Spring Budget Statement

On 20th March 2019, the House of Lords debated the Government’s Spring Budget Statement. The Bishop of Chester, Rt Revd Peter Forster, spoke in the debate:

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Offensive Weapons Bill – Bishop of Newcastle asks Government to think again on Knife Crime Prevention Orders

On 6th February 2019 the House of Lords considered the Government’s Offensive Weapons Bill in its third day of Committee. The Bishop of Newcastle, Rt Revd Chrisine Hardman spoke against Government amendments to create new Knife Crime Prevention Orders. The amendments were withdrawn following the debate, but the Minister indicated they were likely to be returned to again at a later stage:

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle: Before becoming Bishop of Newcastle, I was an archdeacon in south-east London. In my archdeaconry, sadly, was Eltham, where Stephen Lawrence died. I do not, therefore, underestimate the sheer heartbreak and devastation of knife crime, particularly when young people are involved. This crime is growing and growing. I have sat with families whose children have been victims of knife crime. I have officiated at a funeral where that has been the case. The circles of devastation and heartbreak just go on and on. I do not underestimate the seriousness of this problem; nevertheless, I object to this amendment and hope that it will be withdrawn, so that there is more time to reflect on it. Continue reading “Offensive Weapons Bill – Bishop of Newcastle asks Government to think again on Knife Crime Prevention Orders”

Bishop of Chichester speaks in debate on work of Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

On 20th December 2018 the House of Lords debated a motion tabled by Lord Campbell-Savours, “To move that this House takes note of the remit of, and arrangements for the handling of evidence by, the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.” The Bishop of Chichester, Rt Revd Martin Warner, spoke in the debate. That speech and extracts from others is reproduced below. The full debate can be read here.

The inquiry has had from the start, and continues to have, the unequivocal support of the institutions of the Church of England.

Bishop of St Albans asks Government about church and grassroots efforts to tackle violent crime

On 15th November 2018 Lord Bach asked the Government ‘what steps they intend to take to strengthen the ability of police forces in England and Wales to tackle knife and other serious and violent crime in addition to funding provided by the Early Intervention Youth Fund.’ The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow up question:

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Bishop of St Albans asks Government about tackling rise in knife crime

StAlbansRoMB1On 5th November 2018, the Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Dr Alan Smith, tabled a Private Notice Question ‘To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the light of four fatal stabbings in London in the last week, what action is being taken to address the dramatic rise in knife crime in that city and in the rest of the United Kingdom.’ The exchanges and supplementary questions from other members can be found below: Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about tackling rise in knife crime”

Bishop of Ely asks Government about funding for more women’s centres

On 11th June 2018 Baroness Fall asked Her Majesty’s Government “what percentage of women in prison have dependants under 16 years old; and what is the average length of stay in prison for such women.” The Bishop of Ely, Rt Revd Stephen Conway, asked a follow-up question:

The Lord Bishop of Ely: My Lords, the Ministry of Justice has produced clear evidence that women’s centres are effective at reducing reoffending, provide joined-up community services to support physical and mental health needs and give more opportunities to women to have access to their children. What assessment does the Minister make of the need for increased funding to sustain and open more women’s centres? Continue reading “Bishop of Ely asks Government about funding for more women’s centres”

Bishop supports Bill to raise legal age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 12

On 8th September 2017 the House of Lords debated the Age of Criminal Responsibility Bill [HL], a private members’ bill from Lord Dholakia that would raise the age of criminal responsibility in England and Wales from 10 to 12. The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, supported the Bill:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, I add my thanks to those of other noble Lords to the noble Lord, Lord Dholakia, for his tireless work in this area, bringing it before the House. These issues have been debated pretty exhaustively and many of the main points have already been raised, so I will not repeat them. The criminal offending of children is of course a gravely important issue that has profound implications for the child and their future but also more widely for the victims, and of course we have to balance that, as has been pointed out, with their communities. Continue reading “Bishop supports Bill to raise legal age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 12”