Prosperity and fairness

Mike Wood: Although I originally studied law and was called to the Bar, I never practised, so I hope I may speak in the debate without being tied to any particular interest. This debate is increasingly showing a division between those on the side of personal injury practitioners, and those on the side of the overwhelming majority of our constituents who face the costs arising from an ever-escalating number of claims, of escalating value, for relatively minor injuries. My right hon.

Mike Wood: What steps he is taking to ensure that public broadcasters reflect and provide for the whole of the UK.


Jeremy Wright The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Mike Wood: Does my right hon. Friend agree that the key human right in this case is access to a full and fair trial, and that the UK Government must do everything they can to make sure that is possible? If UK agencies and authorities were to withhold evidence they have in their possession, it would put that fundamentally at risk?


Ben Wallace Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)

Mike Wood: Given my hon. Friend’s personal interest in this matter, will he join me in supporting the Government’s “Share the joy” campaign to encourage greater take-up of shared parental leave?


Andrew Griffiths (Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy))

Mike Wood: Does my hon. Friend recognise that condition B would still leave 85% of local newspapers covered by the costs-shifting provisions, directly threatening their ability to conduct the investigative journalism that so many of them do so well?


Bill Wiggin Chair, Committee of Selection, Chair, Selection Committee

Mike Wood: Mandatory reporting requirements are an important step in eliminating the gender pay gap, but does my hon. Friend agree that it will be key for shareholders and customers, as well as employees, to hold businesses to account on those reports?


Victoria Atkins The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women

Mike Wood: What sanctions are available if companies fail to meet their legal obligations to help to close the gender pay gap?


Amber Rudd (The Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women and Equalities)

What is the law is that gender pay gap reporting takes place. The EHRC has the ability to take measures that can end up with fines and further sanctions. In terms of proposals for companies to actually close the gap themselves, we encourage them to put forward their own plans.

Mike Wood: I congratulate the hon. Gentleman on securing this debate on the closure of the offices in my constituency, which will affect many of his constituents. Does he agree that the success of the surge and rapid response team at the Waterfront demonstrates exactly the kind of modern capabilities that would add so much to delivering universal credit, and that the redeployment should be reconsidered, whether with DWP or with other bodies, to make use of the existing staff and skills at the Waterfront?


Mike Wood: I intend to speak only briefly, as this is a strong Bill that will empower people to take control of their data. I am pleased to see such broad support for it receiving its Second Reading, but I am not able to support the provisions in the Bill that would implement section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013.

Sandy Martin Labour, Ipswich