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Summary

  1. The day in the Commons began with energy and climate change questions.
  2. Later there was be a statement from the Northern Ireland secretary.
  3. Then, MPs held debates on climate change and on cancer strategy.
  4. In the Lords, after questions, peers debate the role of trade unions and the exclusion of drugs from sport.

Live Reporting

By Aiden James, Chris Davies and Alex Partridge

All times stated are UK

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  1. Lords adjourns

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    The lords has drawn to a close for the day.

    They meet again at 10:00 GMT tomorrow to debate private members' bills

  2. Government answers debate

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Verma
    Image caption: Baroness Verma

    Baroness Verma answers the debate for the government.

    She says government aid is helping people to "work their way out of poverty."

    Considering emergency relief, she argues that every £1 spent on disaster preparedness, £7 is saved in disaster response.

    She concludes that the international community sees the department as a world leader

  3. Cross party consensus

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour's Lord Collins winds up the debate for the opposition.

    He welcomes the cross party consensus on spending 0.7% of national income on foreign aid.

  4. Large fees for development projects

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Cromwell
    Image caption: Lord Cromwell

    Crossbench peer Lord Cromwell says there is a pendulum in development aid between big projects and small ones.

    He adds that large consulting companies are keen on big projects because they have "fees worth bidding for."

    He criticises large projects for being slow and inefficient.

  5. Women in the developing world

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Crossbencher Baroness Flather raises the issue of woman's rights in the developing world.

    She says that without giving women the chance to join the economic life of a country "there is no future for that country."

  6. Saint Helena

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Liberal Democrat Lord Jones of Cheltenham says that Saint Helena received more Department for International Development assistance than either Sierra Leone or Uganda, due to the construction of an airport.

    He says the UK was right to invest in this territory, but questions how cost effective the project is.

  7. Conservative peer makes maiden speech

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Barker of Battle
    Image caption: Lord Barker of Battle

    Conservative peer Lord Barker of Battle is making his maiden speech.

    The former Conservative MP for Bexhill and Battle was a minister in the Department for Energy and Climate Change. 

    He says he stands by the prime minister's "unshakeable" resolve to spend 0.7% of Britain's GDP on foreign aid.

  8. Long term development

    International development debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Judd
    Image caption: Lord Judd

    Labour's Lord Judd says there can be a contradiction between long-term development and short-term aid, and asks how it is being monitored. 

  9. Aid effectiveness

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Crossbench peer the Earl of Sandwich is introducing a short debate in international development.

    The motion asks the government what steps it is taking to make international development policies more effective.

    He says he wants the UK to "lead the world in aid effectiveness."

  10. Foreign investment vital for the UK

    UK asset sales debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Earl of Courtown
    Image caption: Earl of Courtown

    Answering the debate for the government, the Earl of Courtown says high quality foreign investment is vital for the UK.

    He says the UK attracts the third highest quantity of foreign investment in the world, behind only the USA and China. 

  11. Problems with high-tech business in the UK

    UK asset sales debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour's Lord Mendelsohn winds up the debate for the opposition..

    He argues that Britain lacks high technology businesses.

    He says 40% of UK patents are foreign owned, compared to a European average of 14%, which could mean British innovation being exploited abroad. 

  12. Commons adjourns

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    That's it for the Commons for today.

    MPs will meet tomorrow from 09.30 GMT to debate private members' bills.

  13. 'Minded to find a solution'

    Adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Defence Minister Mark Lancaster says he is "extremely sympathetic" to the case put by his fellow Conservative David Mackintosh.

    Quote Message: I am minded to find a solution and minded to do so quickly."
  14. Mesothelioma compensation

    Adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    David Mackintosh

    David Mackintosh says the Mesothelioma Act 2014 allows those diagnosed "on or after 25 July 2012 to apply for compensation".

    However, he says that service personnel, such as naval engineers who worked in boiler rooms on ships, are unable to sue for illnesses predating the Crown Proceedings (Armed Forces) Act 1987.

    The Conservative MP regards this as discrimination.

    Government information about mesothelioma compensation is available here.

  15. Foreign ownership brings 'higher productivity'

    UK asset sales debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour's Lord Haskel says productivity in foreign owned companies in the UK is higher than their British owned equivalents. He says foreign ownership brings greater knowledge of a wider variety of working practices.

    But he also raises concerns about foreign ownership of the country's "strategic" assets, which only happens because of what he calls the government's "desperation" for cash.

  16. Adjournment debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Conservative MP David Mackintosh leads the final, short debate of the day, which is on mesothelioma compensation for military veterans.

    Mr Mackintosh says the asbestos-related illness is often associated with people who have worked in the construction industry but it also affects armed forces veterans.

  17. National security considerations

    UK asset sales debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Falkner of Margravine
    Image caption: Baroness Falkner of Margravine

    Liberal Democrat Baroness Falkner of Margravine says that national security must be taken into account when considering the foreign ownership of UK assets.

    It is not just passive investment, she says, when we are allowing China to invest in nuclear power plants. Particularly the proposed Chinese built reactor at Bradwell in Essex.

    However, she says, she doesn't believe foreign or British ownership in general is any more or less beneficial to the country or to the communities that companies operate in. We shouldn't hark back to a supposed "golden age" of British ownership.

  18. Minister: 'We perform badly in terms of cancer'

    Cancer strategy debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    "Although we perform very well in many clinical areas in this country, we perform badly, in terms of cancer, compared with other countries," Health Minister Ben Gummer concedes.

    He says this was why the independent cancer taskforce was set up.

  19. Labour calls for funding guarantees

    Cancer strategy debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Shadow health minister Justin Madders calls for assurances from the government that "funding for the strategy will be provided as part of the comprehensive spending review".

    He acknowledges that Health Minister Ben Gummer, due to reply to the debate, may not be able to "pre-empt" the chancellor's statement next week, but urges him to convey "the mood of the House" to George Osborne.

  20. Financial sector not doing its job

    UK asset sales debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Viscount Hanworth
    Image caption: Viscount Hanworth

    Labour's Viscount Hanworth says "our financial sector is no longer devoted to raising capital for investment."

    He argues that most financial activity is motivated by "short term concerns", including "their own salaries."

    He says he would like to see the financial sector "restricted."

  21. 'Strategy across these islands'

    Cancer strategy debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Mark Durkan

    SDLP MP Mark Durkan makes a contribution to the debate, while acknowledging that the cancer strategy "refers to England".

    However, he argues that many of the principles can "apply to the devolved areas as well". Health policy and budgets are devolved in Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland.

    Mr Durkan says there may be an argument for a "UK-wide funding pool" or even one across the British-Irish Council, which includes the Republic of Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

    He ends by calling for "a combined cancer strategy across these islands".

  22. Debate on foreign ownership begins

    UK asset sales

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour's Viscount Hanworth is introducing a debate on the sale of UK assets to foreign owners. 

    The motion asks the House to " take note of the sale of United Kingdom assets to foreign ownership and of the effects on such sales of the laws of corporate governance."

    He says that the UK is trying to avert a balance of payments crisis by selling UK assets to foreign owners, and this is "clearly to our disadvantage".

  23. Need for 'overarching stategy'

    Cancer strategy debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Jo Churchill

    The third MP to sign the motion, the Conservative Jo Churchill, says there is a need for an "overarching" cancer strategy, she backs previous calls to emphasise early diagnosis.

    Quote Message: Some 20% to 40% of people arrive at A&E as their first time when they actually find out they have cancer. By then, it's usually too late."
  24. "Cleanest championships ever"

    Drugs in sport

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Viscount Younger
    Image caption: Viscount Younger

    Government spokesperson Viscount Younger of Leckie says we must ensure "we are never complacent in the fight against doping."

    He adds, in 2017 London hosts the world athletics championships, and the organisers are aiming to put on "the cleanest championships ever".

    He argues it is important for coaching and support staff to be held to account for cheating, as well as the athletes involved.

  25. Surprise at drugs cheats

    Exclusion of drugs in sport

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Collins of Highbury
    Image caption: Lord Collins of Highbury

    Responding to the debate for the opposition, Lord Collins of Highbury, says he was surprised how easily cyclist Lance Armstrong was able to get away with drug cheating. He says he sees similarities with the recent athletics doping scandal.

    He says Lord Coe will need to make sure he has a competent team around him at the International Association of Athletics Federations to clean up the sport.

    Read more here.

  26. Pancreatic cancer research 'lags behind'

    Cancer strategy debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Labour MP Nic Dakin focuses on pancreatic cancer patients in his speech.

    He says research in this area "lags behind" that for other cancers.

    He adds that the cancer strategy calls for access to new cancer drugs" but it "could have gone further" in raising awareness of the symptoms of this form of the disease.

  27. MP supports 'complementary therapies'

    Cancer strategy debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    David Tredinnick

    David Tredinnick, who signed today's motion alongside fellow Conservative MPs John Baron and Jo Churchill, speaks up for "complementary therapies for long-term, chronic illness".

    He says there are options to "expand patient choice [and] holistic care".

    Mr Tredinnick says former national cancer director Professor Sir Mike Richards has said "a substantial number of cancer patients choose to receive complimentary therapies alongside their mainstream cancer treatment".

  28. Conflict of interest

    Exclusion of drugs in sport

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Conservative Lord Moynihan notes that every recent doping scandal has been exposed by the press and not by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada).

    He says Wada suffers from a "conflict of interest" because it is joint owned by governments and the International Olympic Committee. 

    He says "IOC members see Russia's electoral power in sports administration", and don't want to lose political support from Russia by going after doping in that country.

  29. Drugs in sport

    Drugs in sport

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Liberal Democrat Lord Addington is introducing a debate on the exclusion of drugs in sport.

    The motion asks the government what action they are taking at an international level to maintain high standards by all countries and international sporting organisations in order to ensure the exclusion of drugs from sport.

    He tabled this debate after Russia was suspended by the International Association of Athletics Federations for suspected doping.

    Read more here.

    Lord Addington
    Image caption: Lord Addington
  30. Cancer taskforce report

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The motion for debate calls on the government to publish an action plan on implementing the new cancer strategy, following a report by an independent cancer taskforce published in July 2015.

    Among the report's recommendations were prioritising prevention and earlier diagnosis.

  31. Trade union bill will protect consumers

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Neville-Rolfe
    Image caption: Baroness Neville-Rolfe

    Responding to the debate for the government, Baroness Neville-Rolfe says that any decision on the future funding of the Union-learn scheme will be subject to the outcome of the spending review.

    The Baroness says that people should think of the "consumer view" when considering forthcoming trade union legislation, and calls for a "balance" between consumers and producers. She says that when workers like teachers or healthcare workers strike, the public suffers, and this is "not fair and not right."

    She argues the trade union bill will provide a "modern industrial relations framework."

  32. Cancer strategy debate begins

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Conservative MP John Baron opens the second of today's backbench debates, on a new cancer strategy.

    He highlights the importance of early diagnosis of cancer and the effect on survival rates.

    "Still our outcomes continue to lag behind other European counterparts," Mr Baron says.

    He claims this means that up to "10,000 lives a year are needlessly lost because cancers are diagnosed too late".

    John Baron
  33. Government response

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    "We are ambitious for getting a deal in Paris," says Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd.

    She denies the claim, made by Green MP Caroline Lucas among others, that the government is not making sufficient progress in limiting climate change.

    Amber Rudd
  34. "Shame on a government"

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town
    Image caption: Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town

    Responding to the debate for Labour, Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town says it is hard to understand why the government "wants to shackle trade unions."

    She says the government is trying to "undermine the Labour Party" by changing the way unions can donate money.

    She says "shame on a government which fears it can't defeat its opponents politically, and therefore seeks to clobber it."

  35. 'Critical threshold'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Shadow energy and climate change secretary Lisa Nandy says "the world is already halfway to this critical threshold" of a rise of two degrees in global temperatures.

    "With the exception of 1998, the ten warmest years on record ever have all happened since the turn of the century."

    "Humanity's greatest scientific minds have warned us time and time again that the warming trend is now unmistakable."

    She accuses the government of "unravelling all the policies at home", such as subsidies for renewables, that can contribute to limiting climate change.

    Lisa Nandy
  36. Lib Dem claims unions "saved the Labour Party"

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Stoneham of Droxford
    Image caption: Lord Stoneham of Droxford

    Liberal Democrat Lord Stoneham of Droxford says the Liberal Democrats will oppose the trade union bill, which they see as both industrially and politically "partisan."

    He says the Liberal Democrats will "fight to defend freedom of association." and adds that the involvement of people in their workplace is an important act of civic engagement. 

    Lord Stoneham argues that the union movement "saved the Labour Party in the 80's." and  changed Labour's view of Europe.

  37. 'Rubicon that we must not cross'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Callum McCaig

    SNP energy and climate change spokesman Callum McCaig says a rise in global temperatures of two degrees is "the Rubicon that we must strive not to cross"

    Quote Message: The impact upon life on this planet if we get things wrong almost doesn't bear thinking about."
  38. Trade unions "a positive force in society"

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour peer Lord Young of Norwood Green says the forthcoming trade union bill will be a "lost opportunity." He urges the government to "think very carefully" about the bill.

    He says that the trade union movement has been a "positive force in society" and played a key role in fighting for racial and gender equality. 

  39. Fossil fuel reserves 'unburnable'

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The Green Party's Caroline Lucas says that "between 60% and 80%" of the coal, oil and gas reserves recorded in the world are "unburnable" if global temperatures are to be controlled.

    She argues that a "green economy" can provide economic benefits as it is "far more labour intensive" than the fossil fuel industry.

    She also calls for "the fossil fuel lobby to be kicked out of the UN climate negotiations". 

  40. Winter of discontent

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Suri
    Image caption: Lord Suri

    Conservative Lord Suri says "in too many cases, militant unions are damaging society."

    He adds that he is old enough to remember the winter of discontent, and that we "can see examples of the same militancy today."

    He says the trade union bill "will go some way to addressing these problems."

  41. 'Climate justice'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Patrick Grady

    SNP MP Patrick Grady says the opportunity presented by the Paris climate change conference "should not be overlooked".

    He adds that by the end of the year, the French capital should not only be remembered as a "target of terror", but as the "cradle of a climate deal that cares for our communities and, indeed, our common home."

    He says the SNP Scottish government has "championed the concept of climate justice", arguing that the poorest are often the most affected by climate change, yet have often done little to cause it.

    Climate change is also a human rights issue, he says. 

  42. Help for the disabled

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour's Lord Hoyle says it is unsatisfactory that 50% of disabled people are still seeking work.

    He says trade unions can help create the conditions for disabled people to come into the workplace. 

    Lord Hoyle
    Image caption: Lord Hoyle
  43. Need for five-year review clause

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Labour MP and former shadow energy secretary Caroline Flint says she "couldn't agree more" with Rebecca Pow on the need to link climate change to the issue of poverty. 

    She says there is a need for developed countries to look beyond their borders, given that events occurring elsewhere in the world "are going to have a knock-on effect here".

    She tells MPs that the climate deal to be negotiated in Paris must include a commitment for it to be reviewed every five years after it comes into force. 

    She says this is so that "ambition can be ramped up as progress is made". 

    Caroline Flint
  44. Praise for Pontiff from 'good convent girl'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Conservative MP Rebecca Pow tells the House that as a "good convent girl", she takes the Pope's views on climate change very seriously. 

    "When the Pope speaks, we listen", she adds, before noting that the Pope has done much to raise the profile of the "inextricable links to poverty" posed by the climate change issue. 

    She says that the UK "has made progress" on improving the share of its energy that comes from renewable sources. 

    She adds that efforts to encourage the development of offshore wind farms could be a "really, really valuable" addition to the UK's energy mix. 

    Rebecca Pow
  45. Maiden speech

    Trade unions debate

    Another former MP, Andrew Robathan makes his maiden speech.

    Lord Robathan was a defence minister in the last government and served 23 years in the Commons on the Conservative benches.

    A former soldier he says in the SAS they used to have things called "Chinese parliaments" where everyone had their say and said what they thought.

    He readily accepts that trade unions have improved the lot of workers, but says many of his former constituents were not attracted to trade unions and didn't see their relevance.

    Lord Robathan points out that union membership has declined from 13m in the late 1970s to 6 or 7m now.

    Lord Robathan
  46. Criticism of tax relief changes

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Labour MP Ben Bradshaw has some criticism for a surprise withdrawal of tax relief for community energy schemes included in the recently-passed Finance Bill. 

    He says many schemes, including one in his own constituency in Exeter, have been rushing to secure funding before eligibility ends at the start of next month.

    He adds that people involved in many schemes feel they have had "the rug pulled from underneath them" due to the speed with which the policy is being implemented. 

    Ben Bradshaw
  47. 'Benefits to union membership'

    Trade Unions debate

    Another former union leader, Bill, now Lord Morris speaks in the debate.

    Lord  Morris was the General Secretary of the Transport and General Workers Union.

    He says union members have higher pay, better sickness records and better in-work benefits.

    Lord Morris
  48. EU target 'unambitious'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Conservative David Mowat questions whether the UK's commitment to reducing greenhouse gases is being reflected in other EU countries. 

    He says that under the terms of the Climate Change Act, the UK is already legally obliged to a "significantly" more stringent reduction target than the EU-wide target. 

    He adds that, next to the legislation already passed in the UK, the EU's target looks "unambitious".

    "I wonder why that is, I really do", he adds.  

    David Mowat
  49. Background on Paris conference

    Almost 200 countries have agreed to come up with a binding agreement on greenhouse gas emissions, which should come into force after 2020.

    147 of the countries have submitted their carbon emissions pledges – known asIntended Nationally Determined Contributions(INDCs) – by the deadline at the start of this month.

    As an EU member state, the UKis committed to a binding target of at least 40% domestic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, compared to 1990 levels.

    The EU-wide target was submitted back in March. 

    However, some initial analyses have suggested the pledges so far will not be enough to meet the headline 2°C reduction target. 

    Power plant
  50. Maiden speech

    Trade Unions debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Former Liberal Democrat MP, Lorely Burt, uses the debate to make her maiden speech in the Lords.

    She says that she has been impressed by the civility of the Lords and points out that politics, in her experience, has been a "brutal business".

    On the trade union bill she says that in her view it seeks to diminish union power when there is no evidence that the number of strikes is on the increase and the number of union members is the lowest for 20 years, but she adds it is also the case that trade unions serve their members badly when they seek to push employers too far.

    Lady Burt
  51. 'Not successful'

    Trade unions debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Former General Secretary of the print union SOGAT, Labour peer, Lady Dean says the union she led was older than any political party.

    Turning to the trade union bill currently before Parliament, she says this government has a pretty poor record of looking after ordinary men and women.

    She adds that economies without trade unions are not successful.

    Baroness Dean of Thornton Le Fylde
  52. 'Hottest year on record'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Former Labour leader and energy secretary Ed Miliband says we need an agreement In Paris that is as close as possible to what the science tells us is necessary.

    He adds we should all be worried by what the science now tells us with 2015 set to be the hottest year on record.

    He tells MPs that the national commitments submitted by participating countries are currently only halfway between "business as usual" and "where we need to be". 

    However, he says this should not lead MPs to give up completely on the prospects of a deal, which he notes is the first to get "anywhere near" the ambition of a 2°C reduction in global temperature.   

    Ed Miliband
  53. "Overpriced corporate elite"

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Monks
    Image caption: Lord Monks

    Labour's Lord Monks describes this debate as a "trailer for some of the positive features of trade unions", in advance of the trade union bill.

    He argues that trade unions promote equality and economic growth, by ensuring workers have more money to spend.

    He says that in Britain, "a combination of an overpriced corporate elite and weakened unions" has fostered inequality and been a brake on growth.

  54. 'We should respect nature'

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The motion for debate seeks to draw attention to the Pope’s Encyclical, entitled "Laudato Si’, Our Common Home" in which Pope Francis set out the papacy's views on climate change.

    Conservative MP Sir Edward Leigh says the document is, like many papal encyclicals, "very subtle, very profound, and very long".

    It is about humanity's relationship with nature, he says.

    Quote Message: We are part of nature and we should respect nature."
  55. 'Political patronage'

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Bernard Jenkin

    Committee chair Bernard Jenkin ends the hearing. 

    In summing up he says that the Cabinet Office is not the right place to be handing out grants due to it's close proximity to the centre of power. 

    "This smacks of political patronage, the way this money was being handed out" he says.

  56. Paris conference

    Climate change debate

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The 2015 climate change conference will be held in Paris between 30 November and 11 December.

    Labour MP Helen Goodman, opening the debate, says the views of international bodies such as the World Trade Organisation and the International Monetary Fund should be "subordinate" to what is agreed at the conference.

  57. 'Right person' to deal with Kids Company

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Bernard Jenkin refers to Oliver Letwin calling Camila Batmanghelidjh his "hero" and suggests he may not have been the right minister to make a call about funding the charity. 

    Earlier Mr Letwin told the committee that he had supported Kids Company since 2002. Should he have removed himself from the decision making process?

    Mr Letwin says his knowledge of the charity made him the perfect person to make decisions about its funding.

    You can watch the committee here

  58. Tory trade unionists

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Balfe
    Image caption: Lord Balfe

    Conservative peer Lord Balfe says that 30% of trade union members vote for the Conservative party.

    He praises the "union learn" programme, and he says it is to the government's credit that it supports the scheme, and asks if this support will continue.

    He notes the scheme benefits employers and employees.

    The scheme provides adult education in english, maths and technical courses.

  59. Civic engagement

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Labour's Lord Foulkes says that the trade union movement is "the single biggest embodiment of civic engagement." 

    He adds Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development ( OECD) figures, show that the more unionised a country is, the higher the voter turnout at elections.

  60. Malign attack on trade unions

    Trade union debate

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    The statement on Northern Ireland ends and now Labour peer Lord Foulkes of Cumnock is moving a motion urging the house to "take note of the role of trade unions in a democracy and their contribution to the general economic wellbeing of the nation."

    He describes the Trade Union Bill as a "malign" attack on trade unions.

    Read more about the Trade Union Bill here

    Lord Foulkes of Cumnock
    Image caption: Lord Foulkes of Cumnock
  61. Letwin made 'right call' on Kids Company grant

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Oliver Letwin has repeatedly stood by his decision to make a grant of £3m to Kids Company a week before the charity collapsed.

    He says that knowing what he knew then, he made the right call.

    You can watch the committee here

  62. Climate change debate begins

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The Northern Ireland statement concludes and the Northern Ireland (Welfare Reform) Bill, which would give effect to welfare measures, is formally introduced to Parliament.

    After that, the first of today's debates begins, which concerns the forthcoming climate change conference in Paris.

    A group of backbench MPs has tabled a motion which "calls on the government to recognise the significant support for a successful outcome to the conference, which should commit to take further steps to tackle climate change effectively in the UK and around the world before 2020".

  63. Cost of the welfare dispute

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Conservative Lord Lexden asks what the welfare stand-off in Northern Ireland cost.

    Government spokesperson Lord Dunlop says he cannot provide an exact figure, but will write to Lord Lexden with as much information as he can.

    Read more about the welfare dispute here.

  64. Allegations made private donors 'flee' Kids Company

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Oliver Letwin says that allegations made to police that Kids Company mishandled sexual abuse allegations led to the charity's ultimate closure, as private donors "fled".  Without private money, the £3m government grant was not enough.

    He says the government ultimately hopes to recover some of the £3m.

    You can watch the committee here

  65. PKF report questioned

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Committee chair Bernard Jenkin asks why a Cabinet Office commissioned report into Kids Company by the accountants PKF Littlejohn didn't find the charity's biggest problems. 

    Oliver Letwin rejects the idea that PKF was intimidated by Kids Company's proximity to the Prime Minister and delivered a report that the government would have wanted to see.

    You can watch the committee here

  66. UUP: 'The IRA are still in place'

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Ulster Unionist Party MP Tom Elliott says that almost all the parties to the talks to reach a deal "accept that the IRA are still in place, but Sinn Fein do not".

    Theresa Villiers replies that all parties "are absolutely clear that there is no place for paramilitaries in Northern Ireland and they must all disband".

  67. Thriving economy "critical" to Northern Ireland

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Answering for the government, Lord Dunlop says Lord McAvoy is right about the importance of implementation. He says a thriving economy will be "critical" to Northern Ireland, and the deal unlocks £2 billion of extra spending power, as well as extra powers to set corporation tax in Stormont.

    He says a new commission will be set up to deal with the issues of flags and parades.

    He concludes that the agreement offers Northern Ireland the prospect of a "brighter future."

  68. 'Certain areas remain outstanding'

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Liberal Democrat MP Alistair Carmichael welcomes the agreement, but adds that "it is regrettable that certain areas remain outstanding".

    Alistair Carmichael
  69. Flags and parades

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Liberal Democrat peer Lord Dholakia asks how the issue of "flags, parades and the legacy of the past" will be resolved.

  70. 'Still no agreement on the past'

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    SDLP MP Mark Durkan says the UK government had told Sinn Fein, who opposed its welfare reform plans, that a deal on the legacy of Northern Ireland's past was not possible without a deal on welfare.

    However, he says, an agreement on welfare has been reached while there is "still no agreement on the past".

    He asks how this happened.

    Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers replies: "I was arguing hard to keep legacy in. I wish we had been able to."

  71. Security and disclosure

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Speaking for the Labour opposition, Lord McAvoy also pays tribute to Peter Robinson.

    He says the successful implementation of the new agreement is vital, because the people of Northern Ireland do not want to face another crisis in two years time. 

    He asks how the "clash between security and disclosure" can be resolved.

  72. 'Devolution would fail' without deal

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Nigel Dodds

    The DUP's leader in Westminster, Nigel Dodds, pays his own tribute to party leader Peter Robinson.

    He says Mr Robinson's career began "in the dark days when being in politics was a dangerous occupation" in Northern Ireland.

    "There will be those who will want to downgrade this agreement," Mr Dodds says, but argues that without it "devolution will fail".

    He adds that, if direct rule by the UK government had been reintroduced, it would have been "joint rule with Dublin", which was not acceptable to unionists.

  73. 'Veiled warnings'

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Conservative Cheryl Gillan tells Oliver Letwin he's "incredibly diligent" and asks why he didn't heed any of the "veiled warnings" in the various reports into Kids Company's finances.

    He says the evidence the government had from the auditors was not indicative of the sort of financial mismanagement that has since come to light.

    You can watch the committee here

  74. "A fresh start for devolution"

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Dunlop
    Image caption: Lord Dunlop

    Government spokesperson Lord Dunlop is repeating the statement on Northern Ireland in the Lords.

    He begins by paying tribute to First Minister Peter Robinson, who has announced he is stepping down within weeks

    He announces a deal has been reached to resolve the political crisis.

    He says the new package means "a fresh start for devolution."

  75. SNP backing for deal

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    SNP spokeswoman Deidre Brock gives her party's backing for the deal and commitment to help "make it work".

    She asks what differences there will be between the welfare system in Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

    Theresa Villiers tells her that the same basic system will apply but benefits will be "topped up" from Northern Ireland's own spending, provided through the system of grants for distributing public funding throughout the UK.

    Deidre Brock
  76. Labour response

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Vernon Coaker

    Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary Vernon Coaker also pays tribute to departing First Minister Peter Robinson.

    He says progress on resolving matters such as flags and parades is "both urgent and crucial".

    The display of the Union flag and the flag of the Republic of Ireland is contentious in Northern Ireland, as are parades on some public roads by both unionists and nationalists.

    Mr Coaker says "victims and survivors have to be part" of any process to deal with the legacy of Northern Ireland's past, though he acknowledges the "conflicting narratives" involved.

  77. Decisions mine alone, says Letwin

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Committee room

    Oliver Letwin says he discussed Kids Company with the prime minister and knew he was a supporter of the charity but decisions made about the charity were made by him.

    "Nobody told me" to make the two grants, he says.

    Kids Company received grants of £4.25m and £3m from the government this year. The charity collapsed in July.

    You can watch the committee here

  78. Work coaches "transforming" jobseeking

    Lords questions

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Seccombe
    Image caption: Baroness Seccombe

    Conservative peer Baroness Seccombe asks what progress is being made towards the manifesto commitment of achieving full employment in Britain.

    Minister Baroness Altmann says excellent progress is being made. She says a national network of work coaches based in Job centres are "transforming the relationship we have with claimants, and in turn the relationship they have with the labour market." 

  79. Are drones dangerous or harmless fun?

    From the BBC News website

    Drone hovering

    Footage posted online suggests people across the UK are frequently using drone cameras illegally - and incidents reported to police appear to be rising. So why have only three people been prosecuted? And are drones actually dangerous?

    Read more here.

  80. Drone safety

    Lords question

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Conservative Lord Glentoran asks what plans the government has to manage the risks posed to passenger aircraft by drones flown by private individuals.

    He says "privately owned drones are almost certain to bring a disaster into our airspace."

    Government minister Lord Ahmad says the government is working with the Civil Aviation Authority to develop an education programme on drone safety.

  81. Stormont crisis: How the story unfolded

    From the BBC News website

    Stormont

    Stormont's political crisis was sparked by allegations Provisional IRA members were involved in the murder, in August, of Belfast man Kevin McGuigan Sr.

    A row erupted after a senior Sinn Féin member was arrested as part of the inquiry into Mr McGuigan's death. He was later released without charge.

    The crisis deepened when Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson stepped aside on 10 September, along with all but one of the ministers from his Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

    Mr Robinson's announcement came after the DUP failed to get the assembly adjourned for talks to address the situation.

    Read more here.

  82. Kids Company 'chewed through' grant money

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    The SNP's Ronnie Cowan asks what happened to April's grant of £4.25m to Kids Company.

    Oliver Letwin says that the grant amount would be "chewed through" in a few months, that they needed to find additional sources of private funding, but had failed.

    You can watch the committee here

  83. Direct rule avoided

    Northern Ireland statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Theresa Villiers says the Stormont House Agreement, which parties reached after talks in December 2014, "was and remains a good deal for Northern Ireland".

    However, she said, its implementation had "stalled" over matters including welfare reform and paramilitaries.

    The new deal means that the devolved Northern Ireland Assembly can continue and direct rule from London is avoided, Mrs Villiers says.

    It also means the devolution of corporation tax to Northern Ireland can go ahead.

  84. National security

    Lords questions

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Helic
    Image caption: Baroness Helic

    Conservative peer Baroness Helic asks if the Foreign Office currently gets enough funding to promote Britain's interests overseas, and support British business interests.

    She says the recent terror attacks in Istanbul and Paris show how important security is and these problems require diplomatic solutions. 

    Speaking for the government, the Earl of Courtown says the government will soon be publishing a national security strategy, which will be properly resourced.

  85. 'Consistent pattern of behaviour'

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Labour's Kelvin Hopkins raises what the National Audit Office called a "consistent pattern of behaviour" whenever funding grants were to be renewed. The charity would warn about the problems that would be created and give stories to the media.

    Oliver Letwin says that the pattern of behaviour was one of the reasons he was trying to change Kids Company's funding structure, and why he told them April's £4.25m grant was to be the last one.

    Kids Company received another £3m from the government before it went bust,

    You can watch the committee here

  86. Statement on Northern Ireland deal

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Theresa Villiers begins her statement on an agreement that has been reached between political parties in Northern Ireland.

    The Northern Ireland Secretary pays tribute to First Minister Peter Robinson, who has announced he is stepping down from the post.

    Mrs Villiers says Mr Robinson was "key to the agreement reached this week".

  87. Automatic disciplinary process

    Lords questions

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Crossbench peer Lord Blair, who is the former Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, says that any serving officer charged with an offence would automatically be put into a disciplinary process.

  88. Hundreds of police officers convicted in past three years

    From the BBC News Website

    Two police officers

    At least 309 police officers and police community support officers in the UK have been convicted of offences in the last three years, figures show. 

    The offences that led to convictions include sex crimes, assaults and possessing indecent images of children. 

    However, only 25 of the 45 forces gave figures to the Press Association after a Freedom of Information request.

    Read more here.

  89. Police officers with convictions

    Lords questions

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Liberal Democrat Baroness Doocey asks how many serving police officers in England and Wales have been convicted of offences of violence or dishonesty in the past 10 years.

    Government minister Lord Bates says the Home Office does not hold this data, it is held by individual police forces.

    He adds that he shares the Baroness's concern about the issue.

  90. Kids Company's 'clinical' expertise

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Committee chair Bernard Jenkin asks what evidence the government had that Kids Company was a "bona fide clinical organisation".

    Oliver Letwin says just 400 people were receiving "clinical interventions" from Kids Company so it was a small part of their overall work. 

    He adds that the April 2015 grant included conditions that outcomes would start to be measured.

    You can watch the committee here

  91. Baroness Rock introduced

    House of Lords

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Baroness Rock
    Image caption: Baroness Rock

    The Conservative peer Baroness Rock is being introduced to the House of Lords. She is Vice-Chair of the Conservative Party.

  92. Public Administration Committee

    BBC Newsnight Policy Editor tweets...

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    You can watch the committee here

  93. Lord Bruce of Bennachie introduced

    House of Lords

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Lord Bruce of Bennachie
    Image caption: Lord Bruce of Bennachie

    Liberal Democrat Lord Bruce of Bennachie is being introduced to the House of Lords. 

    Previously known as Malcolm Bruce, he served as the member of parliament for Gordon from 1983 - 2015, and was the deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats from January 2014 - March 2015.

  94. Letwin 'never believed' Kids Company figures

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Labour's Paul Flynn asks Oliver Letwin how many people he thought Kids Company was working with.

    Mr Letwin says he "never believed" Kids Company's claimed numbers, which were somewhere in the region of 36,000.

    He says the number of vulnerable children they were working with across their centres in South London, Bristol and Liverpool was closer to 1,900.

    Chair Bernard Jenkin says anyone putting such false figures into a company prospectus would be prosecuted.

    Oliver Letwin clarifies and says that "in some sense or other" Kids Company had 36,000 clients, but he never believed there were 36,000 clients using the charity "day by day".

    You can watch the committee here

  95. 'Voice of Tony Blair coming from the PM'

    Business statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Pete Wishart

    SNP Commons business spokesman Pete Wishart says he heard "the voice of Tony Blair coming from the prime minister" when David Cameron called for air strikes on Islamic state targets in Syria.

    Mr Wishart accuses Mr Cameron of "not giving a care about UN resolutions" and calls for debate on the matter.

    On Tuesday, the prime minister told MPs the Paris attacks had strengthened the case for air strikes, suggesting there could be a fresh vote on the issue.

  96. Oliver Letwin faces the committee

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Oliver Letwin

    The Committee is now hearing from Oliver Letwin MP, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and current minister responsible for the Cabinet Office.

    He signed off a £3m grant to Kids Company a week before it collapsed this summer.

    He tells the committee he was a long term supporter, had been "immensely moved" visiting Kids Company in the early 2000s and still thinks there was "something valuable" being done by the charity.

    You can watch the committee here

  97. 'No contact' with anyone else from the charity

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Committee chair Bernard Jenkin says it is "striking" that Tim Loughton has repeatedly equated Kids Company with Camila Batmanghelidjh herself. What contact did he have with other people from the charity?

    The former children's minister says apart from meeting Alan Yentob, the chair of the trustees, he never had one to one contact with anyone from the charity except the founder.

    You can watch the committee here

  98. Lack of searching questions

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Paul Flynn
    Image caption: Paul Flynn

    "Why on earth were prime ministers impressed by [Camila Batmanghelidjh]?" asks Labour's Paul Flynn

    Tim Loughton says politicians should have asked more searching questions but didn't. He has previously said the prime minister was "mesmerised" by the Kids Company founder.

    You can watch the committee here

  99. Business statement

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    MPs now turn to the leader of the House's announcement of forthcoming business.

    Chris Grayling says he expects there to be a statement on Monday on the national security strategy and the defence review.

    In his response, shadow Commons leader Chris Bryant claims that police cuts pose a risk to the public, in the light of the Paris terror attacks.

    Mr Grayling pays tribute to the police, including those who guard the Houses of Parliament.

  100. The UK's last deep pit coal mines

    From the BBC News website

    Coal mine

    The UK's very last deep pit coal mine is about to close. The BBC's former labour and industrial correspondent, Nicholas Jones, reflects on the end of an era.

    Coal heated our homes, fuelled the industrial revolution, and over the centuries provided millions of jobs in coalfields across the UK, but soon deep mining will be no more, and a way of life is about to end. 

    Read more here.

  101. Today in the Lords

    House of Lords

    Parliament

    Hello and welcome to today's coverage of the House of Lords.

    The day begins at 11:00 with the introductions of Lord Bruce of Bennachie and Baroness Rock.

    Peers will then move on to questions about the convictions of police officers, funding for the Foreign Office, the risk posed to passenger aircraft by drones, and full employment.

    The main business will comprise four debates:

    • The role of trade unions in a democracy
    • Exclusion of drugs in sport
    • Sale of UK assets to foreign ownership
    • Making Government international development policies more effective   
  102. 'Scandal' of coal imports

    Energy and climate change questions

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Dennis Skinner

    "At the beginning of December the last deep-mine pit will close under this Tory government," says Labour MP Dennis Skinner.

    He says it is a scandal "to import 40 million tonnes of year from countries we don't even trust" while cutting UK miners' jobs.

    Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd agrees there is a problem with coal imports, but because she doesn't think "it is right for coal to have a long-term future in this country".

  103. 'Big society' poster child or media pressure?

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Labour's Kelvin Hopkins asks if Kids Company continued to be funded because it was a prominent part of the government's "big society" plans, or if it was because the government was worried about adverse media publicity.

    Tim Loughton says it was a bit of both. He says Alan Yentob, BBC Creative Director and chair of the charity's board of trustees, was "dispatched" to meet him to lobby for continued funding for the charity.

    You can watch the committee here

  104. 'Unconventional' charity

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Conservative Oliver Dowden asks Tim Loughton what he means when he says Kids Company was an "unconventional" charity.

    Tim Loughton says that a conventional charity would be commissioned to do work by a local authority, while Kids Company was not. As such, it's work was not measured.

    He says the treatments and therapists employed by the charity were also questionable, as were charity founder Camila Batmanghelidjh's own qualifications.

    You can see the hearing here

  105. Kids Company warns of 'huge ramifications'

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Tim Loughton quotes from a letter written by Kids Company head Camila Batmanghelidjh to the Prime Minister in 2011. It warned of "huge ramifications" if the charity had to shut down its operations and appeared to threaten the government with bad publicity.

    Tim Loughton has repeatedly said that Camila Batmanghelidjh used her media connections to threaten the government.

    You can watch the committee here

  106. Charity's 'precarious' position

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Conservative MP David Jones asks about an early grant made to the charity during Tim Loughton's time as Children's Minister. Did Kids Company say it would go bust without government help?

    Tim Loughton says "they were certainly in a precarious short term position" for his whole time as a minister "and beyond".

    Kids Company "always seemed to muddle through somehow", though.

    You can see the hearing here

  107. Claim of '£145bn nuclear bill'

    Energy and climate change questions

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Caroline Lucas

    "I do wish the government would apply its horror of subsidies to the nuclear sector as well," Green Party MP Caroline Lucas says.

    She claims that a new nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point in Somerset could mean "an eye-watering £145bn bill for householders and taxpayers" and calls for a Commons debate on the project.

    "Hinckley Point offers low-carbon, affordable energy," argues minister Andrea Leadsom, claiming that people "will not have to pay a penny until it is actually generating".

    In October, EDF Energy reached an agreement with China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN) for a nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point.

  108. Labour queries policy on subsidies

    Energy and climate change questions

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Alan Whitehead

    Shadow minister Alan Whitehead welcomes a government announcement that the use of coal in power generation "will be phased out by 2025".

    However, he asks why subsidies for renewables are to end while "permanent subsidies for the far higher carbon alternative, gas, are to be maintained".

    Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd says the government's policy is that subsidies should be "temporary".

  109. First bailout request in 'July 2010'

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Tim Loughton says that Kids Company constantly asked the government for more funds. He says they first asked him for a bailout in July 2010.

    Camila Batmanghelidjh was hoping to change the "balance of funding" from relying mainly on private donors to the public. He says she hoped to get as much as £10m a year from the government, up from the £4m they were paid.

    You can see the hearing here

  110. Children 'a missing element' at Kids Company

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    Tim Loughton
    Image caption: Tim Loughton

    Tim Loughton says meeting the children who Kids Company was helping was "a missing element" of any visit to the charity.

    He says he had a meeting in the tent in Camila Batmanghelidjh's office. "It was an unconventional office" he says.

    The former Children's Minister says he regularly met children helped by other charities, but never Kids Company.

    You can see the committee here

  111. Kids Company's links with government

    Public Administration Committee

    Select Committee

    Parliament

    The Public Administration Committee is beginning its latest  hearing into the relationship between the charity Kids Company and the government. 

    Today's witnesses are Tim Loughton MP, former Children's Minister and Oliver Letwin MP, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and minister responsible for the Cabinet Office.

     Mr Letwin was one of the ministers who signed off on a £3m grant to the charity a week before Kids Company collapsed.

    Earlier this week, the committee heard from the people responsible for auditing the charity as well as from a former Deputy Children's Commissioner. Newsnight's Chris Cook summarised what they told the committee here.

    You can see the hearing here

  112. Question time in the Commons

    Energy and Climate change questions

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Amber Rudd
    Image caption: Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd at the despatch box
  113. Energy and climate change questions

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Questions to Energy and Climate Change Secretary Amber Rudd and her ministerial team begin with one from Labour's Rachael Maskell, asking what is being done to ensure that the UK meets its EU renewable energy target by 2020.

    Ms Rudd says UK is making "good progress" to meet the target of 15% of energy from clean power by 2020.

    Ms Maskell asks if the secretary of state is going to the Paris climate change conference "to apologise to future generations" following "cuts" to funding in the sector.

    "We are working across government, with transport and with agriculture" to meet the target, Ms Rudd insists.

  114. Also in the Commons today

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    Once statements have concluded, the Commons turns its attention to two backbench business debates.

    The first is on the forthcoming climate change conference, which will be held in Paris between 30 November and 11 December.

    The second debate is on a motion calling on the government to implement a new cancer strategy, following a report by an independent cancer taskforce in July 2015.

    Finally today, Conservative MP David Mackintosh leads a short adjournment debate on compensation for military veterans suffering from the asbestos-related illness mesothelioma.

  115. Today in the Commons

    House of Commons

    Parliament

    The day in the Commons begins in a few moments with energy and climate change questions.

    After that, Leader of the House Chris Grayling will announce forthcoming business and take questions.

    Then, the Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers will make a statement to MPs, which follows a deal reached between Northern Ireland's political parties and the UK and Irish governments.

    After 10 weeks of talks, a way forward has been agreed on paramilitarism and welfare reform.