By David Hanson MP / Latest News / 0 Comments

Delyn MP David Hanson has welcomed the decision to update the law on assisting suicide. It is to be simplified to increase public understanding and reassure people that it applies as much on the internet as it does off-line.  

Following a review of the Suicide Act 1961, the government has decided to reframe it in new, modern language that will make it easier for individual internet users and internet-based businesses, such as Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to understand.

UK ISPs already take down any websites under their control when notified that they contain illegal material and are free to restrict access to harmful or tasteless material in accordance with their ‘acceptable use’ policies. Simplifying the law should help them in doing this.

The Law Commission has also proposed that the language of section 2 should be updated.

Later this year, the government will work with the UK Council on Child Internet Safety to consider the practicalities of restricting access to websites that are not in accordance with UK law and how enforcement mechanisms can and should be applied to online activity.

David Hanson said:

“Protecting young and vulnerable people online must be a priority. There is no magic solution to protect people online but simplifying the language of the Act will help to reassure people that the Internet is not a lawless environment.

“Earlier this year Dr Tanya Byron’s review identified websites promoting suicide as an area where there is some confusion about the application of the law to online activity.

“The decision to simplify the language shows that the Government is committed to delivering the reports recommendations.

“I will be working with Government to ensure that it continues to empower parents and protect children and the vulnerable when they go online.”

By David Hanson MP / Latest News / 0 Comments

Delyn MP David Hanson has welcomed a new consultation, published today, seeking views on increasing the fixed penalty from £30 to £60 for failure to comply with seat belt legislation.

It is hoped the increase will deter those who still risk injury or death to themselves and others by not wearing one.

Whilst educational campaigns and publicity have made considerable differences in behaviour, some drivers and passengers are still ignoring the risks. In a crash from 30 to 0 mph, seat belts reduce the risk of dying by 60 per cent.

Views are also being sought on increasing the fixed penalty for the misrepresentation of vehicle registration marks from £30 to £60. The use of illegal number plates can have a significant impact on criminal investigations and crime detection – in particular the effective use of Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras in helping the police fight crime.

David Hanson said:

“I welcome the proposals in this consultation and hope that they will deter the small minority of people from not putting on their seatbelts.

“Wearing a seat belt is a key factor in avoiding death or injury in a car crash. Around 350 lives in 2006 could have been saved if people had belted up.

“If people would like to comment on the proposals or get more information about the issues, then please contact me on 01352 763 159; hansond(at)parliament.uk; or write to David Hanson MP, House of Commons, London SW1A OAA.

ENDS

The consultation document can be found at

http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/consultations.

By David Hanson MP / Latest News / 0 Comments

Delyn MP David Hanson has welcomed the new £1bn energy saving package.

From this week, everyone in Delyn will be eligible for at least 50% off loft and cavity wall insulation, with everyone on low incomes and all pensioners over 70 able to get these for free, and cold weather payments for the most vulnerable will be increased from £8.50 to £25 a week.

David Hanson MP said:

“We’ve all been hit by high energy prices, so I am determined that people in Delyn get as much help as possible to save energy and cut their bills. That’s why I’m backing a new £910m Government levy on energy companies that will mean people in Flintshire get much cheaper insulation.

“Thanks to the extra help this will provide, people could save as much as £250 to £300 a year, every year, on their fuel bills. Insulation is now free for pensioners over 70 and people on certain benefits, and is half price for everyone else. I think this kind of practical help will make a huge difference.

“So I’m asking all my constituents to call 0800 512 012, and ask what help is available for them.”

ENDS

Notes for editors:

1. Proposed new money from the energy companies and generators:

  • £910 million towards the National Home Energy Saving Programme – £560 million directly into the existing home insulation and energy efficiency programme (CERT) and £350 million for Community Energy Saving Programme.

New money from the Government:

  • An estimated £16 million for cold winter payments.
  • In addition £800 million was announced as part of the Budget deal (£575 million in winter fuel payments and an additional £225 million from the energy companies to be spent on their social programmes) which will bring the total new spending this winter to £1.8 billion.

2.  £300 pounds is an approximate figure saved through installing loft and cavity wall insulation plus replacement of all ordinary lamps with low energy lightbulbs, as well as switching appliances off standby. Based on estimated benefits to people on an average  tariff rate  in a standard three-bedroom semi detached house with a standard heating pattern and a mixture of gas (dominant) and electric heating.

3. The Community Energy Saving Programme is a proposed new legal obligation on the energy companies on which the Government will consult to achieve further investment in energy efficiency measures targeted on area based activity, particularly in areas of high deprivation. The aim of the programme would be to raise the take-up and efficient delivery of energy efficiency measures through street-by-street approaches.    We envisage area-based schemes being carried out through partnerships for example between local authorities, community organisations and social enterprises:

·         Some energy companies may wish to join or establish such partnerships; others may wish to sub-contract their obligation to them.

·        Warm Zones, EAGA and other organisations could be used.  In addition, suppliers could work through the Green Neighbourhoods Scheme.

4. The CERT (Carbon Emissions Reduction Target) scheme, which came into effect on 1 April 2008, doubled the previous obligation on energy companies to help people make their homes more energy efficient and reduce household carbon emissions.  Prior to today’s announcement the total investment required by the energy companies was around £2.8 billion over three years to 2011.  Today’s announcement about the intention to raise the CERT target by 20% increases this by £560 million.  On top of this the new Community Energy Saving Programme will require a further investment of around £350 million.  The total energy company contribution will therefore be more than £3.7 billion between now and March 2011.

5.  Those eligible to receive Cold Weather Payments are pensioners, disabled people and families with a child under five or a disabled child receiving Pension Credit, Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, and income-related Employment and Support Allowance.

By David Hanson MP / Latest News / 0 Comments

Delyn MP David Hanson has welcomed the Government’s new strategy for the UK’s manufacturing sector – ‘New Challenges, New Opportunities’ – to help UK firms take advantage of changing global trends in manufacturing.

The strategy brings together almost £150 million of medium term support for UK manufacturing, and sets out a framework to enable manufacturers to continue creating jobs and generating wealth into the future – including by seizing the opportunities of the low carbon economy, supporting skills, realising overseas opportunities, and improving the perceptions and understanding of manufacturing. It updates the manufacturing strategy first published in 2002.

David Hanson said:

“Manufacturing is central to the success of the UK economy and the Government is determined to help ensure the sector has the right foundations to endure the current economic slowdown and emerge stronger and fitter than ever.

“The UK is the sixth largest manufacturer in the world – the industry accounts for over half our exports, contributes £150 billion to the economy and around three million jobs.

“Following extensive consultation with manufacturing firms and trade unions, the government has published a new strategy for the manufacturing sector to help UK firms take advantage of changing global trends in manufacturing.

 

“These are demanding times, but despite the current challenging global economic climate, and recent downturns in the sector, there is reason to be confident. This strategy will help set the right framework to help businesses emerge from these challenging conditions and remain competitive in an increasingly globalised sector.”