Salutations and greetings. Yesterday I surveyed (or attempted to) the Queen’s speech in the state opening of Parliament. True, I did take a light hearted approach. Today, I am all about the bass…I mean business. So, lets get down to brass tacks shall we? So this happened…
In brief, the Queen’s speech is sort of a ‘to do’ list for Parliament. To do lists…we all have them. Specifically, the Queen delivered her 65th speech to Parliament setting out the government’s legislative program for the next session. Yes. The key points were: (BTW my thoughts are in italics and the proposed bill is in bold.) Ok, let’s do this.
- New powers for prison governors and more independence for prisons-in short, a complete overhaul of practices in order to reduce reoffending. About time. (Prison and Courts Reform Bill).
- Academies will be expanded in the poorest local areas and will set the foundations for a system in which all schools are academies. This is a terrible idea. I am not a fan of academies. (Education for all bill).
- New fair funding formula for schools to even out differences in urban and rural education. Yikes. This is hard. It would be easier to send a rocket to the moon. Just sayin’. (Education for all bill).
- Stronger powers to disrupt extremists and protect the public (including a civil order regime) Ofcom regulation for internet -streamed TV and intervention in unregulated religious schools. Yes. I agree. (Counter-extremism and safeguarding bill).
- Prioritising permanent adoption over short-term placements. Yes. Yes. Yes. (Children and social work bill).
- Bill of Rights to replace Human Rights. Gosh. I could wax lyrical about the Bill of Rights. I am so down with Constitutional/Public Law. Not sure about a replacement option though. Currently we do have the Human Rights Act 1998. (Consultation…meaning…wait and see approach…no bill in place)
- Duty on police, ambulance and fire services to collaborate to improve efficiency. Ok, fine. This will require extra training and money. Green light from me. (Policing and crime bill)
- Police chiefs allowed to give policing powers to volunteers and backroom staff so they can make use of the workforce. Nope. Who came up with this? This is a terrible idea. (Policing and crime bill).
- The right to broadband connection for every household and automatic compensation if the connection goes wrong. Oh yes, please. Very good. (Digital economy bill).
- Protection of children from online pornography by requiring age verification on the internet for adult material. Fantastic. Why has this not been done sooner? (Digital economy bill).
So of course, there is much more-but you have things to do and so do I. So until next time…
One last thing. Check out Camilla sitting up there next to Charles-is she asleep? How rude. I wish it was Diana up there instead. Sigh.