Stop traffic wardens looking like Police

The Labour Government thought it would be a great idea to give the Traffic Wardens in Britain the same uniform that the Police wear so that they would get the same respect the Police achieve.

Why is this idea important?

The Labour Government thought it would be a great idea to give the Traffic Wardens in Britain the same uniform that the Police wear so that they would get the same respect the Police achieve.

Local Authority Invasion of Private Homes

I understand that local authorities now have powers to enter my home using many new laws as an excuse.  (Unsure of the precise number, maybe over 50.)  Bearing in mind those wielding such power can be over zealous, lacking in balance and common sense and just plain stupid the householder is vulnerable.  Such laws need revisitng, the local authorities are in place to provide services, for which the taxpayer pays heavily, they are not in place to boss us around.

Why is this idea important?

I understand that local authorities now have powers to enter my home using many new laws as an excuse.  (Unsure of the precise number, maybe over 50.)  Bearing in mind those wielding such power can be over zealous, lacking in balance and common sense and just plain stupid the householder is vulnerable.  Such laws need revisitng, the local authorities are in place to provide services, for which the taxpayer pays heavily, they are not in place to boss us around.

Catholics are bad citizens

Technically it is against the laws of Great Britain for Roman Catholics to practise their religion.

Although people with strong religious convictions and practice are also liable to be law-abiding, Roman Catholics must break the law to observe the demands of their faith. The government of the time abrogated the penalties for Mass Attendance, (prison, forfeiture and exile), and for Celebration of Mass for Priests, (prison, exile and Death),  but did not repeal the laws. This is well past due a repeal. 2014 will mark the death by hanging of Fr. John Ogilvie S.J. at Glasgow Cross. It would a crying shame if the laws that demanded this are still technically in force today.

Why is this idea important?

Technically it is against the laws of Great Britain for Roman Catholics to practise their religion.

Although people with strong religious convictions and practice are also liable to be law-abiding, Roman Catholics must break the law to observe the demands of their faith. The government of the time abrogated the penalties for Mass Attendance, (prison, forfeiture and exile), and for Celebration of Mass for Priests, (prison, exile and Death),  but did not repeal the laws. This is well past due a repeal. 2014 will mark the death by hanging of Fr. John Ogilvie S.J. at Glasgow Cross. It would a crying shame if the laws that demanded this are still technically in force today.

Repeal the Murder (Abolition of the Death Penalty) Act 1965

To repeal the 1965 Act removing the right of the courts to impose the death sentence on what were previously termed capital murderers – capital murder being murder committed in the course of or furtherance of theft; murder by shooting or explosion; murder while resisting arrest or during an escape; murder of a police or prison officer or persons assisting them; or two or more murders committed on different occasions.  Aspects of EU law preventing member states from restoring or introducing capital punishment would of course also need to be addressed.

Why is this idea important?

To repeal the 1965 Act removing the right of the courts to impose the death sentence on what were previously termed capital murderers – capital murder being murder committed in the course of or furtherance of theft; murder by shooting or explosion; murder while resisting arrest or during an escape; murder of a police or prison officer or persons assisting them; or two or more murders committed on different occasions.  Aspects of EU law preventing member states from restoring or introducing capital punishment would of course also need to be addressed.

Repeal of the hunting ban

As a simple working class city person with very little spare money to purchase a horse and all the other necessary items required to go hunting, even if I wished to which I don't, but a strong belief in my right to spend my money in any way that  I like within reason and having read the comments posted here which  I have been persuaded by I can only say to all those that want to dictate to others how they spend their own hard earned money that they would do more good in the cities trying to persuade all those young thugs to give up their knives, guns etc and allow their neighbours to live in peace & not be afraid to go out of their homes without fear instead of chasing around the countryside hiding behind bushes ,trees etc trying to get photographs of people trying to do a job that is necessary to keep the balance of nature. Finally I would add that out of interest I have been to a few meets to see what happens, have been made very welcome and have yet to meet these 'toffs' some of you refer to. In fact I am left wondering if any of you that do all the shouting have ever taken the trouble to go to a 'meet' or just talk out of ignorance. IanD.

Why is this idea important?

As a simple working class city person with very little spare money to purchase a horse and all the other necessary items required to go hunting, even if I wished to which I don't, but a strong belief in my right to spend my money in any way that  I like within reason and having read the comments posted here which  I have been persuaded by I can only say to all those that want to dictate to others how they spend their own hard earned money that they would do more good in the cities trying to persuade all those young thugs to give up their knives, guns etc and allow their neighbours to live in peace & not be afraid to go out of their homes without fear instead of chasing around the countryside hiding behind bushes ,trees etc trying to get photographs of people trying to do a job that is necessary to keep the balance of nature. Finally I would add that out of interest I have been to a few meets to see what happens, have been made very welcome and have yet to meet these 'toffs' some of you refer to. In fact I am left wondering if any of you that do all the shouting have ever taken the trouble to go to a 'meet' or just talk out of ignorance. IanD.

Remove dental professionals from regulation by the Care Quality Commission

Background
The Dental Law Partnership is a specialist solicitors’ company which acts exclusively for dental patients, representing them in clinical negligence litigation. The Directors of the Dental Law Partnership are doubly qualified dentists and solicitors. We therefore have a special interest in the safety of dental patients and the quality of dental care. We are profoundly concerned regarding the impact of CQC regulation upon the delivery of dental care in England.

Relevant Legislation
The former Secretary of State for Health introduced the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2009 which came into force on 1st April 2010. The impact of those regulations was to widen dramatically the jurisdiction of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) which had originally been established to regulate only the large organisations involved in the delivery of health and social care – NHS Trusts, Private Hospitals etc. Just one year after the establishment of the CQC, the introduction of the 2009 Regulations brought individual health care professionals into CQC regulation including, by operation of Schedule 1, s5(4)(a) and (d) of the Regulations, the activities of all dental professionals including dentists, dental nurses, dental hygienists and therapists, dental technicians and orthodontic therapists. Following the Regulations the CQC set the date for the proposed registration and regulation of dental professionals at 1st April 2011.

Comparison of CQC regulation with existing regulation of dental professionals by the General Dental Council
Dental Professionals are currently regulated by the General Dental Council. We have considered the likely impact of proposed CQC regulation of dental professionals upon the activities of dental professionals, and in particular have compared the existing regulatory jurisdiction of the General Dental Council with the proposed jurisdiction of the CQC in order to determine whether or not additional CQC regulation of the dental profession from April 2011 is likely to improve patient safety or treatment outcomes.

The comparative analysis involved a consideration of the CQC’s own guidance regarding compliance with Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2009 and Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009 published in December 2009, and the professional guidance for dental professionals issued by the General Dental Council since May 2005. The Headings considered are those of the CQC with the relevant CQC ‘Outcomes’ recorded. It should be noted that a number of CQC ‘Outcomes’ are not relevant to individual dental professionals and have not been considered.

Involvement and Information
CQC Outcome 1 Respect for individuals
CQC Outcome 2 Consent to care and treatment
CQC Outcome 3 Fees

Our conclusion is that in the area of involvement and information, the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s3. GDC Principles of Patient Consent s1, s2, s3. GDC Principles of Patient Confidentiality s1, s2, s3.

Personalised care, treatment and support
CQC Outcome 4 Care and welfare of people who use services
CQC Outcome 6 Co-operating with other providers

Our conclusion is that in the area of personalised care, treatment and support, the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s4, GDC Principles of Dental Team Working s1, s2, s3, s4, s5

Safeguarding and safety
CQC Outcome 7 Safeguarding people
CQC Outcome 8 Cleanliness and infection control
CQC Outcome 9 Management of medicines
CQC Outcome 10 Safety and suitability of premises
CQC Outcome 11 Safety, availability and suitability of equipment

Our conclusion is that in the area of safeguarding and safety the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s3, GDC Principles of Raising Concerns s1, s2, s3.

Suitability of staffing
CQC Outcome 12 Requirements relating to workers
CQC Outcome 13 Staffing
CQC Outcome 14 Supporting workers

Our conclusion is that the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s3. GDC Principles of Dental Team Working s1, s2, s3, s4, s5, GDC Principles of Raising Concerns s4

Quality and management
CQC Outcome 16 Assessing and monitoring the quality of service provision
CQC Outcome 17 Complaints
CQC Outcome 21 Records
CQC Outcome 25 Registered person: training

Our conclusion is that in the area of quality and management the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s5, GDC Principles of Complaints Handling s1, s2, s3, s4, s5, s6, s7. GDC Principles of Raising Concerns s1, s2.

Overall
Our analysis indicates the regulation of the dental profession by the CQC would create widespread duplication of existing areas of regulation both in terms of coverage and substantive requirements.
 

Why is this idea important?

Background
The Dental Law Partnership is a specialist solicitors’ company which acts exclusively for dental patients, representing them in clinical negligence litigation. The Directors of the Dental Law Partnership are doubly qualified dentists and solicitors. We therefore have a special interest in the safety of dental patients and the quality of dental care. We are profoundly concerned regarding the impact of CQC regulation upon the delivery of dental care in England.

Relevant Legislation
The former Secretary of State for Health introduced the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2009 which came into force on 1st April 2010. The impact of those regulations was to widen dramatically the jurisdiction of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) which had originally been established to regulate only the large organisations involved in the delivery of health and social care – NHS Trusts, Private Hospitals etc. Just one year after the establishment of the CQC, the introduction of the 2009 Regulations brought individual health care professionals into CQC regulation including, by operation of Schedule 1, s5(4)(a) and (d) of the Regulations, the activities of all dental professionals including dentists, dental nurses, dental hygienists and therapists, dental technicians and orthodontic therapists. Following the Regulations the CQC set the date for the proposed registration and regulation of dental professionals at 1st April 2011.

Comparison of CQC regulation with existing regulation of dental professionals by the General Dental Council
Dental Professionals are currently regulated by the General Dental Council. We have considered the likely impact of proposed CQC regulation of dental professionals upon the activities of dental professionals, and in particular have compared the existing regulatory jurisdiction of the General Dental Council with the proposed jurisdiction of the CQC in order to determine whether or not additional CQC regulation of the dental profession from April 2011 is likely to improve patient safety or treatment outcomes.

The comparative analysis involved a consideration of the CQC’s own guidance regarding compliance with Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2009 and Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009 published in December 2009, and the professional guidance for dental professionals issued by the General Dental Council since May 2005. The Headings considered are those of the CQC with the relevant CQC ‘Outcomes’ recorded. It should be noted that a number of CQC ‘Outcomes’ are not relevant to individual dental professionals and have not been considered.

Involvement and Information
CQC Outcome 1 Respect for individuals
CQC Outcome 2 Consent to care and treatment
CQC Outcome 3 Fees

Our conclusion is that in the area of involvement and information, the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s3. GDC Principles of Patient Consent s1, s2, s3. GDC Principles of Patient Confidentiality s1, s2, s3.

Personalised care, treatment and support
CQC Outcome 4 Care and welfare of people who use services
CQC Outcome 6 Co-operating with other providers

Our conclusion is that in the area of personalised care, treatment and support, the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s4, GDC Principles of Dental Team Working s1, s2, s3, s4, s5

Safeguarding and safety
CQC Outcome 7 Safeguarding people
CQC Outcome 8 Cleanliness and infection control
CQC Outcome 9 Management of medicines
CQC Outcome 10 Safety and suitability of premises
CQC Outcome 11 Safety, availability and suitability of equipment

Our conclusion is that in the area of safeguarding and safety the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s3, GDC Principles of Raising Concerns s1, s2, s3.

Suitability of staffing
CQC Outcome 12 Requirements relating to workers
CQC Outcome 13 Staffing
CQC Outcome 14 Supporting workers

Our conclusion is that the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s2, s3. GDC Principles of Dental Team Working s1, s2, s3, s4, s5, GDC Principles of Raising Concerns s4

Quality and management
CQC Outcome 16 Assessing and monitoring the quality of service provision
CQC Outcome 17 Complaints
CQC Outcome 21 Records
CQC Outcome 25 Registered person: training

Our conclusion is that in the area of quality and management the CQC proposals duplicate existing regulations set out in General Dental Council’s Standards for Dental Professionals May 2005 s1, s5, GDC Principles of Complaints Handling s1, s2, s3, s4, s5, s6, s7. GDC Principles of Raising Concerns s1, s2.

Overall
Our analysis indicates the regulation of the dental profession by the CQC would create widespread duplication of existing areas of regulation both in terms of coverage and substantive requirements.
 

s.145-146 SOCPA

S.145 & S.146 SOCPA makes it an offence to interfere with a contractual relationship of an animal research organisation.

These are the core reasons I propose these sections be scrapped and for animal research organisations to remain protected under existing laws:

1. The law singles out one class of victim as deserving special protection over another. It singles out a class of protester as deserving particular penalties over others and wrongly politicizes the criminal justice system.

EG: If a person trespasses on company X due to it's links to animal research they can be sent to prison for up to five years. If hours later another person trespasses at the same company for it's links to climate change they would not go to prison or have broken this law.

2. Part of this law makes it an offence to committ actions which are already unlawful.

EG: A person committing a serious act of criminal damage can be charged with s.145 SOCPA and face up to five years in prison, instead of up to ten years if prosecuted for criminal damage. However for a less serious crime such as a public order offence a person can face prison instead of facing a financial penalty.

3. This law turns civil and tortious acts in to criminal offences.

EG: Torts are normally civil wrongs and what is and is not a tort is much less clearly defined than what is a crime – it is not easy to assess whether a statement is defamatory or not. This means that it will be much harder for members of the public protesting to gauge in advance what conduct will or will not be a criminal offence.

4. This law allows the Secretary of State to extend the class of protected organisations, and so create new criminal offences, without any Parliamentary debate.

EG: This law at a moments notice could be extended to cover environmental, anti war, anti poverty, anti GM, human rights campaigners and there would be nothing anyone could do to challenge it or open up a debate on the issue. 

Why is this idea important?

S.145 & S.146 SOCPA makes it an offence to interfere with a contractual relationship of an animal research organisation.

These are the core reasons I propose these sections be scrapped and for animal research organisations to remain protected under existing laws:

1. The law singles out one class of victim as deserving special protection over another. It singles out a class of protester as deserving particular penalties over others and wrongly politicizes the criminal justice system.

EG: If a person trespasses on company X due to it's links to animal research they can be sent to prison for up to five years. If hours later another person trespasses at the same company for it's links to climate change they would not go to prison or have broken this law.

2. Part of this law makes it an offence to committ actions which are already unlawful.

EG: A person committing a serious act of criminal damage can be charged with s.145 SOCPA and face up to five years in prison, instead of up to ten years if prosecuted for criminal damage. However for a less serious crime such as a public order offence a person can face prison instead of facing a financial penalty.

3. This law turns civil and tortious acts in to criminal offences.

EG: Torts are normally civil wrongs and what is and is not a tort is much less clearly defined than what is a crime – it is not easy to assess whether a statement is defamatory or not. This means that it will be much harder for members of the public protesting to gauge in advance what conduct will or will not be a criminal offence.

4. This law allows the Secretary of State to extend the class of protected organisations, and so create new criminal offences, without any Parliamentary debate.

EG: This law at a moments notice could be extended to cover environmental, anti war, anti poverty, anti GM, human rights campaigners and there would be nothing anyone could do to challenge it or open up a debate on the issue. 

Ammendment to the Smoking Ban

Whilst i Support a ban on smoking in workplace is a good Idea, I believe that Pubs, Member Clubs and resteraunts should be able to opt in or opt out of letting customers smoke in their premesis.

If an establishment wishes to be a non smoking environment then thats fair, but then people will have a choice as to weather to they wish to go there or a place where you can smoke enjoy a Pint of good British beer and relax after a hard days work.

Why is this idea important?

Whilst i Support a ban on smoking in workplace is a good Idea, I believe that Pubs, Member Clubs and resteraunts should be able to opt in or opt out of letting customers smoke in their premesis.

If an establishment wishes to be a non smoking environment then thats fair, but then people will have a choice as to weather to they wish to go there or a place where you can smoke enjoy a Pint of good British beer and relax after a hard days work.

Remove restrictions on village social events

The last Government  dramatically  restricted the number of events involving alcohol ( dances, parties, concerts, quizzes etc) that can be run in a village hall per year. This has affected the viability of halls which are a keystone of rural communities. It has also cut off funds to those village bodies relying on that income and also the social life of often isolated communities. IF the motive was to help village pubs it has had no benefit, because those attending events in the hall are not in the main pub "regulars". There was no public order motive as the average age of atttendees would generally render that out of the question. This was -as in so many cases- silly legislation imposed for something to do. Remove please!

Why is this idea important?

The last Government  dramatically  restricted the number of events involving alcohol ( dances, parties, concerts, quizzes etc) that can be run in a village hall per year. This has affected the viability of halls which are a keystone of rural communities. It has also cut off funds to those village bodies relying on that income and also the social life of often isolated communities. IF the motive was to help village pubs it has had no benefit, because those attending events in the hall are not in the main pub "regulars". There was no public order motive as the average age of atttendees would generally render that out of the question. This was -as in so many cases- silly legislation imposed for something to do. Remove please!

Repeal of immigration quotas

Repeal the immigration quotas recently announced, and reform the immigration system to appear more welcoming to foriegners wishing to create or invest in UK business and marry UK born citizens.

Why is this idea important?

Repeal the immigration quotas recently announced, and reform the immigration system to appear more welcoming to foriegners wishing to create or invest in UK business and marry UK born citizens.

Fair Treatment for Israel

Especially towards the end of the last administration the sovereign nation of Israel has received unfair treatment. My idea would be to reversal thre o of the policies and treat the sovereign country like any other country. The first policy to stop the use of the term, "occupied terroritory" for the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Israel did not enter Gaza or the West Bank in the same manner that Sadaam Hussein enterd Kuwait or the Russian entered Afghanistan. Instead the West Bank and Gaza came into being as terrority, rightfully caputred during the Six Day, in which Egypt, Jordan, and Syria tried to destroy Israel. As a result of the war the terrorities became a part of Israel. This means Israel has a right to the land just like the US has a right to the land caputured from the Native Americans.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/middle_east/03/v3_israel_palestinians/maps/html/six_day_war.stm

Second reversal would be to seek the reversal of the labelling of products that come from Israel. It serves no purpose other than to inflame feeling on the subject and it works contrary to public policy. Furthermore it seeks to further divide the public and as a consumer it will make me seek out products from Israel so that I can support the country.  

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/3371576/Britain-seeks-block-on-EU-imports-from-Israeli-settlements.html

http://www.defra.gov.uk/foodfarm/food/pdf/labelling-palestine.pdf

Third would the removing the of war crime warrants and fear of being prosecuted for war crimes for Israeli diplomats entering the UK.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article6977002.ece

http://www.haaretz.com/news/dichter-cancels-u-k-trip-over-fears-of-war-crimes-arrest1.234670

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article5908235.ece

Why is this idea important?

Especially towards the end of the last administration the sovereign nation of Israel has received unfair treatment. My idea would be to reversal thre o of the policies and treat the sovereign country like any other country. The first policy to stop the use of the term, "occupied terroritory" for the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Israel did not enter Gaza or the West Bank in the same manner that Sadaam Hussein enterd Kuwait or the Russian entered Afghanistan. Instead the West Bank and Gaza came into being as terrority, rightfully caputred during the Six Day, in which Egypt, Jordan, and Syria tried to destroy Israel. As a result of the war the terrorities became a part of Israel. This means Israel has a right to the land just like the US has a right to the land caputured from the Native Americans.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/middle_east/03/v3_israel_palestinians/maps/html/six_day_war.stm

Second reversal would be to seek the reversal of the labelling of products that come from Israel. It serves no purpose other than to inflame feeling on the subject and it works contrary to public policy. Furthermore it seeks to further divide the public and as a consumer it will make me seek out products from Israel so that I can support the country.  

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/israel/3371576/Britain-seeks-block-on-EU-imports-from-Israeli-settlements.html

http://www.defra.gov.uk/foodfarm/food/pdf/labelling-palestine.pdf

Third would the removing the of war crime warrants and fear of being prosecuted for war crimes for Israeli diplomats entering the UK.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article6977002.ece

http://www.haaretz.com/news/dichter-cancels-u-k-trip-over-fears-of-war-crimes-arrest1.234670

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article5908235.ece

Repeal the laws restricting photography

Repeal Section 58A of the Terrorism Act 2000 to prevent abuse by police preventing members of the public from photographing police, and repeal section 43 and Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 that has been abused to harras photographers.

Why is this idea important?

Repeal Section 58A of the Terrorism Act 2000 to prevent abuse by police preventing members of the public from photographing police, and repeal section 43 and Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 that has been abused to harras photographers.

Minimum demand for a referendum on any topic.

Should a petition manage to attain either a minimum number of signatories, or a minimum percentage of the voting population in support of a referendum on a specifically worded topic, a national referendum must legally be provided by the acting government within an agreed timeframe (e.g. 270 days.)

This would empower the nation to make its own key decisions and repeal those where the elected officials have failed to represent the views of the majority.

Influential decisions should be controlled by volumes of votes and not by the wealth of lobbyists.

Any government failing to provide a referendum, when the minimum demand is met, within an agreed timeframe, whilst the nation is not in a state of emergency, should be considered forfeit and an immediate general election should be called.

Why is this idea important?

Should a petition manage to attain either a minimum number of signatories, or a minimum percentage of the voting population in support of a referendum on a specifically worded topic, a national referendum must legally be provided by the acting government within an agreed timeframe (e.g. 270 days.)

This would empower the nation to make its own key decisions and repeal those where the elected officials have failed to represent the views of the majority.

Influential decisions should be controlled by volumes of votes and not by the wealth of lobbyists.

Any government failing to provide a referendum, when the minimum demand is met, within an agreed timeframe, whilst the nation is not in a state of emergency, should be considered forfeit and an immediate general election should be called.

Repealing (or radically amending) the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

It is time that the UK government finally admitted that the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 is a failure. It fails to prevent drug use, it fails to adequately distinguish between the relative harms of drugs and it fails to protect society from the negative consequences of the illegal drug trade.

 

The Act does not make sense from any scientific perspective. Ecstasy 'mdma' (class A) is not as dangerous as heroin or cocaine. In fact the science shows that ecstasy is a relatively benign drug, with very few deaths compared to most Class A drugs and even alcohol and tobacco. Statistically ecstasy is safer than horse riding. Pretending that it is deserving of Class A status sends out the wrong message and makes a mockery of attempts to control drug use in a meaningful way. This is just one example of how the Act fails to adequately classify drugs. There are many more.

 

Criminalizing drugs does not prevent or deter use. This is a fact. What it does do is criminalize people who would otherwise be perfectly law-abiding citizens. Those drug users who do currently steal to fund their habits do so because of the fact that drugs are illegal and therefore expensive. Criminalizing drugs actually generates more crime.

 

Criminalizing drugs makes drugs even less safe by pushing production underground and denying regulation. This is one of the most worrying aspects of the Act. Governments should take responsibility for ensuring that if people do take drugs, those drugs are made by proper companies and subject to regulation.

 

The Act also denies the treasury huge sums of potential tax reciepts. The money raised through tax can be used to fund the NHS. Benefitting even non users.

 

Criminalizing drugs is highly punitive. It may seem normal now for drugs to be illegal, but actually its quite a new phenomenon. Human beings have used recretional drugs for millenia. Putting people in cells as 'punishment' for drug use is illiberal, whatever arguments are given for doing so.

 

I am not suggesting that drug use should not be regulated. That would be a silly position to take. Drugs can be dangerous, they can turn lives upside down. Thats why we need to make sure that we have a sensible system of control in place that does not force users underground into the hands of criminals. The Netherlands is a good template for how a new system may take shape. Or we could look at alcohol and tobacco. These are drugs, and the are regulated.

 

This is a matter of civil liberties. It is about us realising that drug users do not belong in prison. They are ordinary people who should be treated as such. Allowing alcohol and tobacco, and then incarcerating somebody for another drug, is plain hypocrisy. It is wrong.

 

If we dont change the law….there is only one winner….organised crime.

 

I would suggest recategorizing drugs into 'hard' and 'soft' categories according to scientifically proven evidence. The Advisory Council should be given authority over this.

 

Soft drugs should be legalised and regulated for sale in licensed premises.

 

Hard drugs should be available on the NHS through a GP.

 

 

 

Why is this idea important?

It is time that the UK government finally admitted that the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 is a failure. It fails to prevent drug use, it fails to adequately distinguish between the relative harms of drugs and it fails to protect society from the negative consequences of the illegal drug trade.

 

The Act does not make sense from any scientific perspective. Ecstasy 'mdma' (class A) is not as dangerous as heroin or cocaine. In fact the science shows that ecstasy is a relatively benign drug, with very few deaths compared to most Class A drugs and even alcohol and tobacco. Statistically ecstasy is safer than horse riding. Pretending that it is deserving of Class A status sends out the wrong message and makes a mockery of attempts to control drug use in a meaningful way. This is just one example of how the Act fails to adequately classify drugs. There are many more.

 

Criminalizing drugs does not prevent or deter use. This is a fact. What it does do is criminalize people who would otherwise be perfectly law-abiding citizens. Those drug users who do currently steal to fund their habits do so because of the fact that drugs are illegal and therefore expensive. Criminalizing drugs actually generates more crime.

 

Criminalizing drugs makes drugs even less safe by pushing production underground and denying regulation. This is one of the most worrying aspects of the Act. Governments should take responsibility for ensuring that if people do take drugs, those drugs are made by proper companies and subject to regulation.

 

The Act also denies the treasury huge sums of potential tax reciepts. The money raised through tax can be used to fund the NHS. Benefitting even non users.

 

Criminalizing drugs is highly punitive. It may seem normal now for drugs to be illegal, but actually its quite a new phenomenon. Human beings have used recretional drugs for millenia. Putting people in cells as 'punishment' for drug use is illiberal, whatever arguments are given for doing so.

 

I am not suggesting that drug use should not be regulated. That would be a silly position to take. Drugs can be dangerous, they can turn lives upside down. Thats why we need to make sure that we have a sensible system of control in place that does not force users underground into the hands of criminals. The Netherlands is a good template for how a new system may take shape. Or we could look at alcohol and tobacco. These are drugs, and the are regulated.

 

This is a matter of civil liberties. It is about us realising that drug users do not belong in prison. They are ordinary people who should be treated as such. Allowing alcohol and tobacco, and then incarcerating somebody for another drug, is plain hypocrisy. It is wrong.

 

If we dont change the law….there is only one winner….organised crime.

 

I would suggest recategorizing drugs into 'hard' and 'soft' categories according to scientifically proven evidence. The Advisory Council should be given authority over this.

 

Soft drugs should be legalised and regulated for sale in licensed premises.

 

Hard drugs should be available on the NHS through a GP.

 

 

 

Repeal Tory Anti-Trade Union Laws- Right to Strike

Between 1980 and 1993 the Thatcher and Major Governments passed laws which are being used make legal industrial action almost impossible. The Employment Acts 1980, 1982, 1988,  1989, 1990, the Trade Union Act 1984, The Trade Union & Labour Relations Act (Consolidation) Act 1992 and the Trade Union Reform and Employment Rights Act 1993 have been used to undermine the fundamental civil right to strike.

  • All these laws should be repealed immediately. The Labour Government had promised to do just that before it was elected in 1997. Without these laws the bosses could not keep getting court injunctions making strikes illegal. The trade union movement could then fight back more effectively against the cuts in public services, pensions, pay, welfare benefits etc. Our working conditions and living standards would be a lot worse if the trade unions hadn't fought for them over the years. The anti-trade union laws are one of the main reasons why we work longer, are taxed more, have lower pay and pensions than most of the rest of Europe. The will rich get richer and the poor will get poorer unless the trade unions step up strike action. 

Why is this idea important?

Between 1980 and 1993 the Thatcher and Major Governments passed laws which are being used make legal industrial action almost impossible. The Employment Acts 1980, 1982, 1988,  1989, 1990, the Trade Union Act 1984, The Trade Union & Labour Relations Act (Consolidation) Act 1992 and the Trade Union Reform and Employment Rights Act 1993 have been used to undermine the fundamental civil right to strike.

  • All these laws should be repealed immediately. The Labour Government had promised to do just that before it was elected in 1997. Without these laws the bosses could not keep getting court injunctions making strikes illegal. The trade union movement could then fight back more effectively against the cuts in public services, pensions, pay, welfare benefits etc. Our working conditions and living standards would be a lot worse if the trade unions hadn't fought for them over the years. The anti-trade union laws are one of the main reasons why we work longer, are taxed more, have lower pay and pensions than most of the rest of Europe. The will rich get richer and the poor will get poorer unless the trade unions step up strike action.