Tuesday, 26 May 2015

The Queen's speech should highlight social responsibility and protecting the climate.

Tomorrow amidst the pomp and ceremony of the state opening of parliament the Queen will deliver the first speech written for her by a Conservative government for almost twenty years.

North Staffs Green Party activist Sean Adam said this should be 'an opportunity of this new government to set a social responsible agenda and highlight progress in the need for environmental protection'

Amongst the legislation expected to be announced are bills for a referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union and devolution of more powers to English cities.

There will also be legislation to end the use of police cells to provide emergency detention for people with mental health problems, to create more apprenticeships and to give parents of three and four years olds access to fifteen hours free childcare a week.

The speech will also contain controversial measures to change strike laws, requiring industrial action to be supported by at least 40% of eligible union members; to repeal the Human Rights Act and replace it with a Bill of Rights and to revive the Communications and Data Bill giving the security services greater access to information about individuals phone and internet usage.

Speaking about his concerns regarding the legislation likely to be announced Sean Adam said 'I believe that what we are going to see is an opportunity for greater tax relief opportunities for those who least need them and once again further austerity inroads into the disabled which I feel will also include taxing the Personal Independent Payment,. This has been a support service to help disabled people with additional costs to achieve a semblance of quality of life dependent on their condition and should be effectively ’ring fenced’

He added that 'What worries me most will be the exclusion from the Queens’ speech on Climate Change and yet this need to achieve global climate balances is an opportunity here in North Staffordshire to build on an already renewable energy sector to bring in additional employment,  development and research'

A spokesperson for North Staffs Green Party said 'Sean's comments demonstrate that the austerity agenda put forward by the government has real consequences for vulnerable people and ignores key areas of concern.'

Adding that 'while some measure such as ending the detention of people with mental health problems in police cells for no reason other than that they are ill and improving access to free childcare are welcome other areas, the repeal of the Human Rights Act and the expansion of the power of the government to spy in citizens are worrying.'

They provide, he said, 'further evidence that David Cameron's government has priorities that do not match the concerns of most people.'

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