Last night in the House I spoke in the debate on the Police, Crime, Sentencing & Courts Bill.
I spoke on the Bills new penalties for child sex offenders, the management of high-risk terror offenders and violence against women.
There are other provisions that I welcome:
- Doubling the maximum length of sentence for assaults on emergency workers
- Ensuring serious offenders serve at least 2/3 of their sentences and increasing maximum sentences for rapists and child murderers
- New provisions to keep young offenders out of custody and into 16-19 academies that will give them a real chance of developing skills to enable them to get a job in the outside world.
Some of you have contacted me about this Bills ramifications for protests. I want to reassure you that the Bill does not stop people from holding or participating in protest and this remains a cornerstone of our democracy. However it does give the police more powers to impose conditions when the protest causes “serious disruption to the life of the community.” This was prompted by a protest in 2019 in London when bridges were blocked across the Thames and ambulances returning to St Thomas Hospital could not get patients across. It does not affect the ordinary right to protest.