All 1 Lindsay Hoyle contributions to the Public Houses (Electrical Safety) Bill 2021-22

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Mon 1st Nov 2021

Public Houses (Electrical Safety) Bill

Lindsay Hoyle Excerpts
1st reading
Monday 1st November 2021

(2 years, 8 months ago)

Commons Chamber
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Afzal Khan Portrait Afzal Khan (Manchester, Gorton) (Lab)
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On a point of order, Mr Speaker. Today marks the beginning of Islamophobia Awareness Month, a call to tackle this insidious hatred. This time last year, to mark this month, I wrote to the Prime Minister raising concern over Islamophobia and urging him to better safeguard British Muslims and to fulfil his promise to carry out an independent investigation into his party. A year on, the Prime Minister still has not responded. That is wholly unacceptable and an insult to British Muslims. Mr Speaker, is it in order for the Prime Minister to ignore Members’ correspondence? If it is not, what action can I now take? Perhaps the Prime Minister could come to this Chamber to make a statement on Islamophobia Awareness Month.

Lindsay Hoyle Portrait Mr Speaker
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I thank the hon. Member for giving me notice of his point of order. I can confirm that I have had notice on this subject and a statement about it. I would of course expect the Prime Minister, and any Minister, to respond to Members from all parts of the House. That is what Ministers are there for; as I have said before, they are answerable to this House and to MPs. We need to support Members of Parliament to carry out their duties, so I would expect that all correspondence is answered in a timely way. I am sure that that message will have got through, via those on the Government Benches, and back to the Prime Minister. If the hon. Member does not receive a response quickly following his point of order, he is welcome to discuss with the Table Office in what way he might pursue that question, but I genuinely believe that people do get a lot, and I would not expect any Member not to be answered, so I can only presume—and hope—that there has been a genuine mistake.

Michael Gove Portrait The Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (Michael Gove)
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Further to that point of order, Mr Speaker. The hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton (Afzal Khan) is quite right to raise, in Islamophobia Awareness Month, the importance of countering anti-Muslim hatred. I know that he has secured a Westminster Hall debate later this week, which the Minister for Equalities and Minister for Levelling Up Communities, my hon. Friend the Member for Saffron Walden (Kemi Badenoch), will be responding to. There is an anti-Muslim hatred working group in my Department and, indeed, an independent adviser on Islamophobia. There is direct governmental responsibility, which rests with my Department, to deal with the issues that the hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton quite rightly raises. On the related question of matters within the Conservative party, I will make sure that his correspondence is replied to in a timely way.

Lindsay Hoyle Portrait Mr Speaker
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Thank you, Minister Gove.