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Point of Order

Volume 652: debated on Thursday 17 January 2019

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. Along with 32 Members of Parliament from across the House, I applied to the Backbench Business Committee last autumn for a debate on the upsurge in violent antisocial behaviour, which is happening in a number of constituencies. I understand that many applications are made. Although we were successful in ours, we were told that we had to be put on a waiting list, as time had not been allocated by the Government. Just last night, a number of my constituents came to me to inform me about delinquents throwing bricks at buses in the Orchard park part of my constituency. Obviously that is very worrying for bus drivers, passengers and other road users, and I very much hope that action is taken forthwith. My point is that this House adopted the Wright reforms to allow Back Benchers to bring forward issues of concern to them and their constituents in a timely manner, but at the moment the Government do not seem to be allocating sufficient time for Backbench Business Committee debates. I know that there are two taking place today, but I am not aware of any additional days for such debates after that. I know we are very pressed because of Brexit, but is there anything you can do to put pressure on the Government to make sure that time is allocated for us to debate these issues of real importance to our constituents?

I thank the hon. Lady for her point of order. The business statement has just taken place, and I am not sure whether this issue was aired then. I see that next Thursday we will have another Backbench Business Committee debate, along with another business statement—there may also be one in between. Perhaps she might like to raise this issue at that point. She also might like to discuss it with the Chair of the Backbench Business Committee, because I know he has fairly regular meetings to discuss the timings. In the meantime, I am sure those on the Treasury Bench will have heard her comments and will feed them back.