Paris – no knee-jerk responses, but no cop-outs either

The worst terrorist attack in western Europe for a decade has left us all feeling numb. Our thoughts go out to the bereaved and injured. But inevitably our minds look to the consequences. What we must avoid is any knee-jerk responses. Two such responses we must avoid are: first, a rush by governments to remove yet more of our hard-won freedoms; and second, a rush to close our borders to refugees coming from the Middle East.

Our freedoms of speech, expression and religion, and our rights to privacy and to live our lives as we want were hard won over many centuries and we must defend the honour of those who fought and sometimes died to secure them for us. When it comes to refugees from the Middle East, the first thing we should remember is that this type of horrific slaughter is exactly what the refugees are fleeing from. The terror we saw in Paris should make us more acutely understanding of why the refugees are fleeing, because attacks like this have been going on in Syria and Iraq now for a decade.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 39 Comments

Lib Dem Lords’ maiden speeches: Jonny Oates on international trade and on running away to Ethiopia at 15

We like to cover our Lords’ maiden speeches. Nick Clegg’s former chief of staff, Jonny Oates made his last week. He talked about international trade and particularly about encouraging trade with Africa, and told us something about his life that may well become one of those Lib Dem trivia questions for fundraising quizzes. I think we need to know the full story.

My Lords, it is an honour to make my maiden speech, albeit necessarily briefly, in this debate. I want first to thank everybody who made my introduction to your Lordships’ House so easy—in particular, Black Rod and his staff, the doorkeepers, attendants and police officers, who have been an unfailing source of directions, advice and, above all, patience. I also want to thank my two supporters, my noble friends Lady Parminter and Lady Suttie, who have been great friends to me over many years.

I have taken the geographic part of my title, Denby Grange, in tribute to my late uncle Lawrence, who was a miner at Denby Grange colliery in West Yorkshire all his life. My title is not only a tribute to him; it is a wider acknowledgement that my good fortune is built on the shoulders of my grandparents and parents, uncles and aunts. They all faced much tougher challenges than I ever have and, through the sacrifices they made, they opened up a whole world of opportunities to their children and grandchildren that they never had themselves.

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We must hold back on military action against ISIS

Even in a world in which we see tragedy every day on the news, one where twenty four hour coverage of the many battles currently raging in different corners of the globe makes it easy to become numb to humanitarian disaster, the Paris attacks last week were shocking. Amongst the heartening displays of solidarity and defiance, people are angry, and rightly so. Those who committed the attacks displayed such a level of callous cruelty that it is completely understandable that many across Europe want revenge against patrons of the twisted ideology that leads people to carry out such horrific acts.

Now, however, is not the time to act on this anger. Emotions are running far too high for sensible decisions about foreign policy to be made. It is not heartless or unpatriotic to point this out, and of course we all want to see an end to ISIS, but the growing pressure on the British government to join the bombing campaign in Syria must be resisted. For now, anyway.

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Invest in infrastructure, back enterprise and think long term: key principles in Tim Farron’s first major speech on the economy

In just over an hour’s time, Tim Farron makes his first major speech on the economy at the IPPR in London. We’ll have coverage of the whole thing later, but here are the key principles he’s setting out. He also sets out a challenge to Labour to support the Liberal Democrats in stopping the cuts to tax credits, not just putting in transitional relief which would do nothing to help new claimants on low pay.  I suspect that the stuff on venture capitalism shows the influence of Susan Kramer and her professional knowledge in the field.

Here are some of the key points he will make:

The Liberal Democrat economic principles

So today I intend to set out the three principles that will govern Liberal Democrat economic policy for the next five years. They are:

Invest now in infrastructure
Back enterprise
Take the long view

It’s a clear prospectus – just ten words – but it sums up very simply where we need to take this country and how my vision for the future differs from those of George Osborne and Jeremy Corbyn.

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Updated: Votes at 16: Paul Tyler’s speech in the Lords debate – and Government defeated 293-211

The Liberal Democrat members of the House of Lords have done some fabulous work. It’s not just the tax credits vote recently, but the work they did in very difficult circumstances during the last government to challenge terrible Tory ideas. Add to that their campaigning work in the run up to the General Election and their constant visits to local parties (over 100 since the General Election) to help with the #libdemfightback.

Today is no exception. They are playing a blinder in the EU Referendum Bill debate arguing for votes at 16 and as such showing themselves to be far more in touch with reality than their counterparts on the government benches.

Update: And it worked! The Government was defeated by 293 votes to 211.

Tim Farron commented:

The Liberal Democrats have been fighting for this for decades, and we are winning the argument.

This is a victory for democracy, we will give over a million people a voice on their future.

In Scotland 16 and 17 year olds proved that they have they not only have the knowledge but also the enthusiasm to have a say on their own future. Taking that away now would do them an injustice.

The Government must now listen and act, Cameron cannot turn his back on 1.5 million young adults.

Paul Tyler led for us today and he added:

We cannot deny interested and engaged young adults such an important vote. This is a say in their future, and with Cameron ruling out future referendums, they won’t get a voice for a long time coming.

Today I am proud that we have taken a small step to improve our democracy following a campaign that the Liberal Democrats have led for decades.

Some of the arguments made by Tory peers were beyond ridiculous. Adolescents’ brains were still developing apparently. It’s vaguely reminiscent of the arguments about women’s brain size during debates on votes for women.

It’s up to the Government now to decide whether to keep this in . If it’s removed when the Bill goes back to the Commons, our peers will call a vote to reinstate it. If there is a stalemate, then the bill could be delayed by up to a year.

Here is Paul’s speech in full:

In Committee I thought that one of the most persuasive contributions – made from the Conservative benches opposite – was from the Noble Lord Lord Dobbs:

“ … the question I am struggling with is; How can it be right to allow 16 and 17 year-olds to vote in a referendum on Scotland but not in a referendum on Europe? There has to be some sort of consistency.”

And he rubbished the official explanation that the extension of the franchise in the Scottish independence referendum did not originate with Conservative Ministers: “… although the coalition Government and the Prime Minister did not specifically approve votes for 16 year-olds, they did acquiesce in votes for 16 year-olds.”

He and others – notably an increasing number of Conservative MPs – have warned that we cannot pretend that Scottish young people are somehow more mature, well-informed and capable of exercising common-sense than their English, Welsh and Northern Irish counterparts. I dare the Minister to repeat that absurdity.

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Bombing Daesh in Syria?

The possibility of a vote in Parliament on bombing Daesh (also known as ISIL/ISIS/IS) in Syria is coming with talk in the news of which Labour MPs might back it, in a potentially close vote. I think we need to debate this too. It is likely to be a free vote or one with significant rebellions on all sides. Should our MPs be whipped?

The difference between attacking Daesh in Iraq and Daesh in Syria seems to be a legal one not a moral one. The former is in support of Iraq/Kurdish Iraq at their request, and the latter would arguably require a UN Security Council resolution which may be unlikely. And practically there are Iraqi ground forces to support from the air. In Syria, this is less clear, and bombing alone never seems to achieve anything.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 42 Comments

Votes at 16: Jonathan Court: 16 and 17 year olds are affected by Governments – we should have a say

Ahead of tonight’s vote in the House of Lords on giving 16 and 17 year olds the vote in the EU Referendum, Liberal Youth member Jonathan Court, who’s 17, explains why the issue is so important to him.

I missed the 2015 election by 15 months. Though all my friends around me could vote in the last election, I was stuck without a say. During the campaign I listened to debates, campaigned with other locals and met numerous politicians like Sadiq Khan and Nick Clegg.

16 and 17 year olds aren’t stereotypical drug-taking layabouts that have no interest in the things around them. Things like the education maintenance cuts, tuition fees rise and proposed child tax credit cuts really permeate into people’s discussions. 16 and 17 year olds aren’t stereotypical hard-left extremists either, however they are concerned about public funding cuts that affect them. And why shouldn’t they be? Everyone votes in their interest but young-disenfranchised people without a vote are being squashed by the baby boomers that can vote in their droves. Young people are being continuously robbed of responsibilities by this government, a mixture of cuts in grants to those who go to sixth forms while raising the school leaving age has left too many in limbo.

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Let’s get some national campaigns going on issues the voters care about

Our Party is all about campaigning. It is what saved the old Liberal Party from extinction and what sustains us in difficult times. I know local parties up and down the country are running campaigns on many different issues, but we lack some important national ones.
What about Europe I hear you say, or the Human Rights Act?

Well, yes, the EU and human rights are important issues and we do have to campaign for them, but they are not high on people’s list of concerns.

Apart from Europe, we have individual initiatives launched by the leader or an MP, which is great. I am thinking in particular of Tim Farron’s prioritising of housing, and Norman Lamb on social care. However we need that little bit extra, something that really captures attention. What I am thinking of are issues where we can get out amongst the voters with a petition and potentially get lots of signature on equally important areas of policy that emphasise our social liberalism.

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Votes at 16: Isabelle Cherry: It’s our future, too

Ahead of the Lords vote on allowing 16 and 17 year olds the vote in the EU Referendum, Liberal Youth member Isabelle Cherry, who’s 17, says why this is so important to her.

A 16 year old says: “I think we should remain in the EU because membership gives us a say on how trading rules are set up”, to which a 46 year old replies: “you don’t know what you’re talking about because you’re 16”. If the 16 year old’s argument was said by an older member of the community, the point would be scrutinised and debated, and ultimately taken seriously. Does who the person is validate, or in this case, invalidate their argument?

There would obviously, and quite rightly, be outcries of blatant discrimination if the 46 year old’s response was “you don’t know what you’re talking about because you’re a woman” or “because you’re black”. How come it is acceptable to reject the argument of the 16 year old on the grounds of their age, as opposed to the credibility of what they’re saying?

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Lynne Featherstone writes… Tories’ huge backward step on climate change

A few wind turbines
Today the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Amber Rudd, will give a speech to update us all on the Government’s energy policy. What she will say has been widely trailed and it contains some seriously bad news.

The last six months have seen a relentless and systematic unravelling of the excellent work done by Ed Davey to develop the green economy. The Government is now going one step further to deprioritise decarbonisation as a main goal, in favour of making energy security its number one priority. It does not seem to realise it is possible to deliver on both.

Amber Rudd will say she plans to curb the growth of renewable industries even further, with the logical conclusion that there must be an increase in nuclear and gas to meet energy needs. This means expensive subsidies paid to other countries, rather than investment in renewables in the UK, and also fracking.

The most baffling aspect of the Government’s abandonment of the renewable sector is the fact there is such a strong business case for investing in green industries. We might understand their actions if it was just about environmental concern, which Conservatives have never been strong on, and we know of the power wielded by backbench climate-change deniers and fossil fuel lobbyists. But to ignore the long-term economic case in favour of short-term cash gains is extraordinary. The UK has been a world leader in this sector and continuing to invest and develop these job-creating industries while we have a competitive advantage and while the costs of producing renewable energy are plummeting is simply good economic sense.

photo by: vaxomatic
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Votes at 16 LibLink Special: Tim Farron: If you are old enough to fight, you are old enough to vote

Ahead of the crucial Lords vote this afternoon, Tim Farron has written for the Telegraph about why giving 16 and 17 year olds the vote in the EU Referendum is so important:

He points out the logical flaws in the Government’s stance:

It is striking that the same people who argue people that generations of Brits “haven’t had a say” on the EU are now opposed to giving 16 year olds the right to vote. They seem to want democracy, but only the kind they like – or think will get the result they want.

Sixteen and seventeen year olds will have to live with the consequences of this huge decision for many years to come and to not give them a say, is simply, anti-democratic. This is why I support increasing the franchise.

He highlights the success of the Scottish precedent:

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Help get the Oldham postal vote out

Half of people in Oldham West and Royton get their ballot papers in the next few days. Can you encourage them to cast their votes for the excellent Liberal Democrat candidate Jane Brophy?

National Campaigns Officer Steve Jolly explains why you should:

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Crucial day for Votes at 16 as Lords debate EU Referendum Bill

One of the best moments of the Scottish independence referendum last year for me was in the late afternoon on polling day. I was outside a polling station in Corstorphine watching streams of engaged 16 and 17 year olds, some of them still in school uniform, coming in to cast their votes. At the time, I thought how cruel it would be, after they had been such a positive part of the referendum, for them not to be allowed to vote on their UK Government 7 months later.

However, when it comes to the Scottish elections next May, my 16 year old will vote for the first time, for the Scottish Liberal Democrats.

I’ve always believed in votes at 16, but the case for voting in the referendum was stronger than ever. The country was making a decision that would affect it forever, not just five years. It’s exactly the same with the EU Referendum, yet the Conservative Government refuses to give these young people their say. The House of Lords could change those plans today. It goes without saying that the Liberal Democrat peers will be supporting votes at 16. The case to do so is compelling. Joanne Ferguson, who’s 17, is a Liberal Youth member who voted for the first time in the referendum. She’s written for the Common Weal site to explain what that vote meant and has led to for her:

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Tim Farron MP writes…Come and help Jane Brophy in Oldham West and Royton

Tim Farron & Jane Brophy OldhamThis party has given me so much. I joined as a 16 year old and it has given me lifelong friends and an extended family.

Today I am asking a favour from you. I hope you know me well enough to know that I only do that when it matters. I am asking for your help to support my good friend Jane Brophy and our Oldham West & Royton campaign.

I was there a couple of weeks ago to launch the campaign and to be honest you will struggle to keep me away! Our MPs and virtually all of our peers will be going too to support Jane. So I am asking you to help her too.

The energy of the campaign was brilliant. It was great!

We are campaigning on our record – the only party that actually opposed tax credits, fought the welfare changes and is standing up for small business and entrepreneurship. We have a strong message. We just need to sell it.

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The other things this FE election should make us worry about

This week has seen a lot of heated debate about the party’s governance and how well we’re implementing (or not) the recommendations from the Morrisey report. Personally, there are three other things about the election last week that should concern us, and that as a party we need to work together to address.

The first is our diversity problem. Or should we start calling it a tragedy? Our peer group is one of the more (if not the most) diverse official groupings within the party. Yet when it came to people putting themselves forward as their rep on Federal Executive, who were the only people willing to step up? Yet again it was two older white men. At every single level of the party, if this is the case it has to be questioned. There are so many talented people from underrepresented groups in our Peer group. Why aren’t they putting themselves forward? And more worryingly, why is no-one asking that question?

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Statement from Rock the Boat – Liberal Democrats against harassment

Rock the Boat – Liberal Democrats Against Sexual Harassment – today welcomed the statements from Tim Farron and Lord Rennard this morning regarding the House of Lords’ representative on the Federal Executive.

Grace Goodlad, steering group member, said:

We are saddened that it took the triggering of a Special Conference and a public plea from our Party Leader to get there, but we are pleased that good sense has now prevailed.

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Kirsty Williams’ speech to Welsh Lib Dem conference

It was with initial disbelief and then horror as I watched the events in Paris last night unfold
Our thoughts are of course with the families and communities who have been affected by this tragedy.
But we mustn’t forget that the whole point of terrorism is to intimidate and terrify
And the horrors of last night were indeed terrifying

Posted in Op-eds | 4 Comments

++Breaking: Chris Rennard’s statement as he stands down from the Federal Executive

Chris Rennard has made the following statement announcing that he has withdrawn from the Federal Executive:

A week ago, I was elected by the votes of the Liberal Democrat members of the House of Lords to be their representative on the party’s Federal Executive. Any Lib Dem peer could have stood, all of them could vote, and I was elected by 44 votes to 25. Since then a number of party members have objected to that outcome and sought to effectively overturn it by removing the right of the Lib Dem peers to have a representative on it.

I was disappointed that in a party called the Liberal Democrats there should be such a challenge to the result of a democratic election. I recognise, however, that there has been much controversy in the party and this has continued partly because it has been very poor in communicating to its members the outcomes of all the various processes investigating allegations made against me. In particular, many members have remained unaware of the key conclusion concerning me in the final report of the independent businesswoman, Helena Morrissey, who reviewed these processes.

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+++Breaking: Tim Farron calls on Chris Rennard to step down from the Federal Executive

Tim Farron has issued the following statement calling on Chris Rennard to step down from the Federal Executive position to which he was elected by Liberal Democrat Lords last week:

As you know, Chris Rennard’s election to the Federal Executive has prompted party members to call for a Special Conference.

I have not spoken out until now as I have been giving Chris time to reflect on the party’s reaction to his election.

I have decided it is time to make clear publicly that I do not believe it is in the interests of the party for Chris to take up his position on the FE.

Chris was entitled to stand for election and the Lords were entitled to elect him. That does not mean his decision to put himself forward was in the best interests of the party.

Helena Morrissey’s review threw the spotlight on our party’s culture and working practices. We have made major changes to the constitution and to the rules we use to apply its values.

For example, we have ensured that for instances of alleged discrimination, bullying, harassment or intimidation, we now operate to the standards you would expect in most modern workplaces.

However, I also believe that the call for a Special Conference shows we still have some way to go to convince our members that the party’s culture has changed.

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New Liberator magazine out

This issue’s free sample online content is the Commentary on how the party might react to the election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader, and why the campaign to stay in the European Union should not allow itself to be dominated by business leaders with little popular appeal.

Also as a free sample, former Devon North MP Nick Harvey exposes how Liberal Democrat polling during the general election showed the party losing almost every seat and that its messages were unpopular, yet those in charge of the campaign refused to change their plans.

Elsewhere the issue has news and gossip in Radical Bulletin, book reviews, Lord Bonkers’ latest thoughts and among the articles:

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Scratch and sniff: The reek or alluring scent of our values

The medium is the message. So often as people it’s not so much what we do as how we do it, that leaves the greater impression.

The passive aggressive person makes you regret asking even when they help you. So it is important to reflect not just on are we doing the right thing but are we doing it in the best way.

As Liberal Democrats we signed up to three core values Liberty, Equality and Community – how are we building these or indeed communicating these values? The twist is that most people prefer to talk about real things they can …

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Africa Liberal Network undertakes first ever election observation mission in Zanzibar

Zanzibar 4
International Office_with textWhite sandy beaches, glamorous resorts, history and beautiful architecture. These are some of the things that come to mind when we think of the exotic island of Zanzibar. But for the Africa Liberal Network (ALN), Zanzibar was – and is – much more than that.

For the ALN, Zanzibar was the destination for our first-ever election observation mission. Following the unanimous decision taken by the network’s executive committee, the ALN Secretariat arranged and coordinated this mission in partnership with the LibDem International Office and the Friederich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (FNF). The mission was led by our East Africa Vice President, Rosemary Kariuki (Orange Democratic Movement, Kenya).

Arriving in Zanzibar, the team and I quickly realised that we were truly the ‘’guinea pigs’’ of this new ALN project, and what an exciting challenge it was!

Posted in Europe / International | Tagged and | 1 Comment

Tim Farron MP writes…If we allow fear to win, then really we have lost


In the aftermath of the atrocities on Friday, my thoughts remain with the families of those killed and injured. As the world watches on in collective horror and mourning, the families and friends of those who are lost will be dealing with their own private grief, and among the discussions of international response and foreign policy consequences we must not forget that each of the 129 who have died is a personal tragedy as well as a global one.

As events unfolded over the weekend the political stage was crowded, in most cases with people simply responding to events, but also with those desperately using it to justify their own positions or forward their own agendas.

It is critical that political leaders here in the UK fight the temptation to do the same, and instead work together to understand the facts before attempting to state with confidence what should or shouldn’t be done, at home and abroad, in response to the attacks.

Posted in News | Tagged and | 74 Comments

LibLink: Shirley Williams tells George Osborne that he has 10 days to save the NHS


Writing in the Guardian, Shirley Williams picks up the baton passed on by Nigel Crisp, the former chief executive of the NHS, who four years ago wrote about his experiences in his book 24 Hours to Save the NHS.

Shirley explains that many of the financial woes in the NHS have been inherited from past schemes:

For example, the number of funded places for young men and women training in this country as nurses was cut by 12% – 2,500 places – in 2012. The consequent shortage of newly qualified nurses has been filled by people recruited by employment agencies. The cost of agency staff is one of the main reasons for overspending by NHS trusts. In 2014/15, agency staff cost the NHS £1,770m, a year-on-year increase of 29%.

Posted in LibLink | Tagged , and | 16 Comments

Boris’ Israel visit proves he is unsuitable to represent us on the world stage


Many can be forgiven for finding Boris Johnson’s manner affable and quite comical. However, his conduct during his visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories this week has been no laughing matter. A frontrunner to be our next Prime Minister has clumsily bounced around the region making an offensive remark here and reciting anti-Palestinian propaganda there.

The Mayor of London said:

I cannot think of anything more foolish than to say that you want to have any kind of divestment or sanctions or boycott against a country that, when all is said and done is the only democracy in the region. is the only place that has, in my view, a pluralist, open society…

…The supporters of this so-called boycott are really just a bunch of corduroy-jacketed academics from lefty, not that there’s anything wrong with wearing a corduroy jacket I hasten to say, but they are by and large lefty academics who have no real standing in the matter and I think are highly unlikely to be influential on Britain. And this is a very, very small minority in our country who are calling for this.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 12 Comments

I became a Lib Dem member this weekend – Why?


Social media is awash with similar responses to this weekend’s tragedy:

“At an awful, heartbreaking time like this, while we pray for Paris, it is important that we ”

Fair enough. Shock focuses the mind, and compassion demands action.

Unfortunately, we live in times where liberalism is no longer so mainstream.

What we may have shrugged off before as mild, parochial xenophobia, is turning nasty. Mr Cameron will accept less Syrian refugees in five years than Germany accepted in a week. Those of us who sympathise with all victims of IS, find this totally unacceptable.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 24 Comments

Chris Maines elected as London Chair

Chris MainesCongratulations to Chris Maines who was elected as Chair of London Region on Saturday!

He succeeds Mike Tuffrey, who had come to the end of his term of office and was not eligible for re-election.

Chris has been a councillor for a total of 28 years, and has served as Leader of Bromley Council and Leader of the Opposition in Lewisham.  He has run for Parliament, and has been closely involved with party conferences as Chief Steward and currently on the Federal Conference Committee.

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Top of the Blogs: The Lib Dem Golden Dozen #439

Welcome to the Golden Dozen, and our 439th weekly round-up from the Lib Dem blogosphere … Featuring the seven most popular stories beyond Lib Dem Voice according to click-throughs from the Aggregator (8 -,14 November  2015), together with a hand-picked quintet, you might otherwise have missed.

Don’t forget: you can sign up to receive the Golden Dozen direct to your email inbox — just click here — ensuring you never miss out on the best of Lib Dem blogging.

As ever, let’s start with the most popular post, and work our way down:

Posted in Best of the blogs | 1 Comment

Towards a family friendly House of Commons

There was a Commons debate this week on making the Houses of Parliament more family-friendly. We’ve already covered the breastfeeding angle but it’s worth looking at some of the other issues raised.

Jo Swinson, in an article for the New Statesman, talked about what she thought was necessary to make Parliament more accessible for parents.

Lots of positive suggestions were put forward in the debate, including better scheduling of Parliamentary recesses to coincide with school holidays, more predictability of debates and votes, a drop-in crèche facility to complement the nursery, introducing maternity cover for MPs and compassionate carers’ leave for staff facing family emergencies. Rightly, the debate included family responsibilities beyond parenting, whether for elderly relatives or for partners who become ill. Professor Sarah Childs, the respected expert on gender and politics from Bristol University, is currently preparing recommendations for reform of Parliament to make it more accessible to people from under-represented groups, so it was a timely discussion.

She talked about the history-making change that had made a real difference to her and her husband when their son was born:

Posted in News | Tagged , and | 3 Comments

LDV’s Sunday Best: our 7 most-read articles this week

7 ver 4 fullMany thanks to the 11,400  visitors who dropped by Lib Dem Voice this week. Here’s our 7 most-read posts…

Chris Rennard elected to the Federal Executive by Lib Dem peers (105 comments) by The Voice

Alistair Carmichael case rumbles on (38 comments) by The Voice

HS2: Who cares about an old pear tree standing in its way (71 comments) by John Whitehouse

Posted in Site news | 2 Comments

Recent Comments

  • User AvatarHuw Dawson 26th Nov - 11:37pm
    I am deeply unhappy about our likely involvement in the oncoming campaign in Syria - but given that Labour is about to eat its own...
  • User AvatarGeorge Kendall 26th Nov - 11:34pm
    @Jonathan Brown Me too. I like being in a broad church. At the moment, I'm describing myself as a Social Democrat, because I think that...
  • User AvatarPeter Hayes 26th Nov - 11:09pm
    A question he might ask, can the Prime Minister confirm that expanding the air war will not reduce the air support to the Kurds who...
  • User AvatarJayne Mansfield 26th Nov - 10:26pm
    @ a social liberal, Obviously I didn't make myself clear in my post.I have always been opposed to British involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq. I...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 26th Nov - 9:53pm
    PS, I know you can achieve a no-fly zone diplomatically, but it isn't explicitly said and it looks like the equivalent at this stage of...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 26th Nov - 9:42pm
    We don't necessary need to defeat Daesh anytime soon. Airstrikes are right in principle, so I think the argument that airstrikes alone won't defeat Daesh...