Social Security Bill — 22 Jul 1997

Oliver Letwin MP, West Dorset did not vote.

Order for Second Reading read.

I beg to move, That the Bill be now read a Second time.

Reforming the welfare state to meet the needs of the 21st century is one of the biggest challenges facing the Government, but after fewer than three months we have already made significant progress. The Bill is another important step forward.

One of the key challenges that we face in reforming welfare is to build a modern, fair and efficient welfare service that commands the support of everyone in our society. The way in which social security is delivered at the moment is resented by the public who pay for it, the clients who use it, and the staff who run it. The Bill lays the foundations for transforming the future delivery of welfare and eradicating the failures of the past.

The Government are committed to the creation of a modern welfare state to help rebuild a strong and cohesive society--a society in which opportunities and responsibilities are common to all, a society in which everyone has a stake and no one is excluded. We are redefining welfare as an active hand-up, not just a passive hand-out of benefit. We are creating a modern welfare system, which will encourage financial independence while simultaneously promoting social cohesion and well-being; which actively supports work, saving and honesty; and which helps to tackle unjustifiable social and economic inequalities.

For too long, the welfare system has excluded people from the rest of society, writing them off to a life on benefit, and ignoring both their aspirations and responsibilities. Now we are changing the system, so that it actively helps people to meet their responsibilities to themselves and their families.

We have already made a start. We said that we would offer a new deal to help the young and long-term unemployed to get off benefits and into work. We are providing a new deal for the young and long-term unemployed. We are doing more. Lone mothers have previously been excluded from those opportunities, as have those with ill health or disabilities. We are extending opportunities to them, too--I launched the first phase of our new deal for lone mothers only yesterday. We said that we would develop a national child care strategy to help parents, especially women, to balance family and working life. We are implementing a radical programme of measures that make child care an integral part of not only our social policy but our economic policy.

We said that we would create a new framework to enable everyone--including those who are caring for people at home, perhaps an elderly or disabled relative, and those on low or intermittent incomes--to enjoy a

22 Jul 1997 : Column 784

dignified retirement. We are conducting a wide-ranging review to achieve a consensus for change, to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to enjoy a decent and secure retirement.

I hope that that will be addressed by Ministers with responsibility for such matters and that they will weigh up those concerns and reservations.

I beg to move, To leave out from "That" to the end of the Question, and to add instead thereof:

"this House declines to give a Second Reading to a Bill which, while including measures which will reduce delays in, and increase the fairness of, the appeals process in social security and related areas,

Question put, That the amendment be made:--

The House divided: Ayes 47, Noes 304.

Historical Hansard | Online Hansard |

Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 000.0%
Independent0 10100.0%
Lab301 (+2 tell) 1072.9%
LDem0 40 (+2 tell)091.3%
PC0 1025.0%
SNP0 4066.7%
UUP3 0030.0%
Total:304 47055.0%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

NameConstituencyPartyVote
Dan NorrisWansdykeLabaye

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