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Deregulation Bill

Volume 577: debated on Monday 17 March 2014

At the Second Reading of the Deregulation Bill on the 3 February I intervened on the hon. Member for Brighton, Pavilion (Caroline Lucas) in relation to clause 47 to say that the Newspaper Society had not provided evidence to the Joint Committee on the Draft Deregulation Bill. I have since been informed that this statement was incorrect. While the Newspaper Society was not called to provide oral evidence to the Joint Committee, it did provide written evidence. This evidence, however, was not referred to in the Joint Committee’s final report.

Media organisations were consulted previously by the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee. However, in response to concerns expressed directly to me and at the Second Reading debate, I met on 11 February representatives of both print and broadcast media groups, including lawyers and union representatives. The meeting was also attended by the hon. Member for Hayes and Harlington (John McDonnell) as the secretary of the NUJ parliamentary group. At that meeting we agreed that our objectives were in fact the same and that we would work together to find a mutually agreeable amendment to the Bill. Some additional consultation is currently under way, I hope to be able to table such an amendment at Report stage.