Hiring ferry companies with no ferries latest Government Brexit farce
Responding to reports that a company the government have handed a contract to to provide ferries in the event of a no-deal Brexit has no ships, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs spokesperson Ed Davey said:
That the government has reportedly signed a contract with a ferry company with no ferries pretty much sums up their farcical approach to the entire Brexit fiasco. The government could, and should, take the threat of a no-deal Brexit off the table. It is being used only to try and scaremonger people into backing their deal. It is now costing the country millions – it is inexcusable and people won’t be fooled.
People must be given the final say on the Brexit deal with a people’s vote where they have the right to choose to remain.
Rival Brexit plans reveal Govt without a course
Responding to rival Brexit plans set out by Amber Rudd and Andrea Leadsom, Liberal Democrat Brexit Spokesperson Tom Brake has said:
While people at home over Christmas will be worried about Brexit uncertainty, these rival plans reveal a Conservative Government without a course.
Theresa May is looking more and more like Captain Bligh. Her mutinous crew have lost faith in her. We even have Andrea Leadsom so lost at sea that she is speaking irresponsible gibberish about an impossible ‘managed no deal’.
Amber Rudd has land in sight by accepting a People’s Vote is ‘plausible’. Not only that, Liberal Democrats know it is the only way to break the parliamentary deadlock. It is time all parties got on board.
Govt must act to prevent deaths on our streets
Responding to Government figures that nearly 600 homeless people died on the streets last year, Liberal Democrat Housing Spokesperson Wera Hobhouse said:
These deaths are absolutely tragic. As a wealthy country, we simply cannot accept people dying on our streets.
The Conservative Government’s failure to look after these individuals is a shameful dereliction of duty. Conservative Ministers must recognise the urgent need to build more social homes. The Liberal Democrats want to see 50,000 social houses to be built every year, rising to 100,000 as soon as possible.
These figures also bring into sharp focus how homelessness services for mental health and substance abuse desperately need more funding.
The housing crisis is a human crisis. It is depriving people of a roof over their head with devastating consequences. The time for warm words and little action has long gone.
Govt must end ‘wild west’ drone market
The Liberal Democrats have demanded the Conservative Government end the ‘wild west’ drone market and tighten up laws on who can own drones following the disruption caused at Gatwick today.
Speaking after securing an urgent question in the House of Lords, Liberal Democrat Transport Spokesperson Jenny Randerson said the incident at Gatwick “illustrated the frightening ease with which drone vessels can inflict massive damage to our safety, our security and our economy”.
The Liberal Democrat peer urged the Government to set out plans for “proper controls on drones early in 2019”. In response, the Minister accepted the Government must “absolutely introduce new laws” but failed to set out in detail what that would mean and when.
Following the exchange, Jenny Randerson said:
The failure of Conservative Ministers, despite ample opportunity, to implement tighter regulation on drones has allowed an irresponsible act this morning to cause disruption to thousands of people trying to get home for Christmas.
It is estimated that hundreds of thousands of drones will be bought as Christmas presents. There is a greater risk to aircraft and public safety than ever before. The rules are ultimately too lax.
Liberal Democrats demand better. Conservative Ministers must end wild west drone market, not least by starting with a compulsory registration of drones and compulsory training for all users.
Lib Dems: Responding to the Government’s statement that confirms the reduction of money for public health by £85 million for the year 2019-20, Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Judith Jolly said:
It is outrageous that after months of the Conservatives claiming they care about health and the NHS, they have today have confirmed a further reduction in funding for public health.
This just goes to demonstrate the Tories duplicity, promising one thing and doing another. The Conservatives must stop following warm words and policies with insufficient funding.
Liberal Democrats are clear about the critical importance of public health. It is time the Government listened and prioritised public health by halting these cuts to funding and reinvest the money previously cut
Tory immigration plans would bring chaos, not control
Responding to the Government’s immigration white paper, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Ed Davey said:
These Tory immigration plans would bring chaos, not control. Does anyone really believe that the Home Office can cope with a massive new temporary worker scheme? It already can’t cope with managing non-EU migration.
Every year, tens of thousands of employers would for the first time have to apply for visas – with all the costs, bureaucracy and delay the Home Office specialises in.
Britain’s immigration system isn’t broken because of the EU, it’s broken because Home Secretaries like Theresa May pandered to populism and failed to do their day job.
The Liberal Democrats demand better. We recognise the huge benefits of immigration and would fix the system so it works for everyone, not least by scrapping the Conservatives’ shameful hostile environment.
Dropping migration target an admission Brexit won’t control immigration
Responding to reports the Government’s migration target has been left out of draft proposals for a new immigration system, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Ed Davey said:
If the Conservatives really are dropping their manifesto commitment of a net migration target, that is good news.
It’s an admission that Brexit won’t control immigration as Mrs May promised – otherwise the target would surely be kept.
This was yet another deception of the people by the right-wing nationalist Brexiteers. The truth is that it’s the needs of our economy and the NHS that drive recruitment from overseas, not membership of the EU.
But dropping the target isn’t enough to repair our broken immigration system. The Liberal Democrats demand an end to the hostile environment and investment in an accountable Border Force to secure our borders and rebuild public confidence.
Cable: Decision to ramp up no-deal is psychological warfare
Responding to the Cabinet decision to increase preparations for a no-deal, Leader of the Liberal Democrats Vince Cable said;
The decision to ramp up the no deal pressure is psychological warfare. The Conservative Government are attempting to scare MPs, businesses and the public with the threat of a no-deal.
Theresa May is irresponsibly trying to run down the clock so that the only option is to support her discredited deal.
It is time to stop playing political games with our future and take the issues at hand seriously. The only real way out of this deadlock is to hold a People’s Vote, with the option to remain in the EU.
Lib Dems: Case for a People’s Vote has spread to very top of Government
Responding to the news that the Prime Minister will use her statement in the House of Commons this afternoon to address reports that the Government are considering a People’s Vote, Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesperson Tom Brake said:
The political narrative has shifted massively and the People’s Vote campaign is now firmly knocking at the door of Number Ten.
Theresa May has a history of flip-flopping on big political decisions so we should read little into her denials. But the case for another vote has spread through Government to the very top.
The Tories may now see it as a way of clinging onto power, but we will campaign for the option to remain, giving power back to the people.