March 3, 2014

Handout Bill

Finally, a small bit of good news.  Many thanks to Ants, who contacted the Home Office and was informed that the government have planned for our situation to be corrected through a handout bill.  The only catch is that when the ballot is drawn for the Private Members' Bill (PMB), if one of the winners chooses our handout bill, the government will definitely end the discrimination.  

The downside to this is that we have to have an MP who is interested in taking the bill.  Julian has persuaded the Government to help out if someone wants to present a PMB.

Here is a bit of information from the Home Office on the protocol of Private Members and Handout Bills.

I have researched the information that is published on the process for Government Handout Bills, and think that you may find this Cabinet Office guide helpful: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/210917/Guide_to_Making_Legislation_July_2013.pdf.
There is a specific section on Handout Bills.

To answer your question, a number of private members will bid in the bill ballot; some will have a specific bill they want to pursue, others will not.

The option of taking forward a bill to provide a citizenship route for children of unmarried British fathers will be offered to an MP who has not got a Bill of their own they want to introduce and has scored highly in the ballot. 

As you suspect, this doesn’t give an absolute guarantee of success, but the fact that this Bill has government support, and is seen to correct a longstanding inequality in current law, would presumably make it attractive to members. 
I plan on contacting the MPs who are successful in the ballot to persuade them to take on the government handout bill that is in our favor.  If you'd like to help, please contact me through the link in the top right hand side of the site.

Immigration Bill

Unfortunately (again), due to our issue not being within scope, our situation will not be resolved in the upcoming immigration bill that is currently making its way through Parliament.  Yes, it is extremely sad and disappointing, and I am beside myself with a range of emotions, but I have to give the utmost respect to Dr. Julian Huppert MP, who worked tirelessly to try and have us included in this bill. 

I also have to thank Meg Hillier MP, for her words in the debate, as she is aware of our issue through dealing with this anomaly with some of her own constituents, and would also like to see an end to this discrimination. 

Dr. Julian Huppert MP -

9 May 2013 : Column 188

22 Oct 2013 : Column 16WH

22 Oct 2013 : Column 248

5 Nov 2013 : Column 176  

Meg Hillier MP  -

5 Nov 2013 : Column 178

March 2, 2014

Crime and Courts Bill

I have to give a massive amount of thanks to Baroness Hamwee and Dr. Julian Huppert MP, who both worked to have our situation resolved in the upcoming Crime and Courts Bill. The reasoning for the unusual placement was because the bill deals with immigration and nationality issues, and it was their hope that we could be included in one of the amendments. Unfortunately, our issue was considered too out of scope to be included in the bill, but it's great to know we have people trying their best to end the discrimination we are facing.

As a reference, here are the links to the debates:

Baroness Hamwee - House of Lords - 28 May 2012 : Column 985

Dr. Julian Huppert MP - House of Commons - 14 Jan 2013 : Column 697