Life outside the Equality Bill

Just to catch up on life outside the Equality Bill Committee – I thought I would just run through a few of my activities this week so far.

I had a long conversation (in lieu of a meeting) with Treehouse – our autistic school in Muswell Hill. They have withdrawn an application for an all-weather sports pitch because they need to work with concerned local residents to make sure that everyone is happy with any proposals.

I did the World at One (radio) after Prime Minister’s Questions. I was in the studio with the panel who were Lord Myners, Lord Adonis, Andrew Mitchell and me! Spot the difference! Andrew Mitchell and I are elected! The other two are Ministers in the Labour Government! We were discussing the new White Paper proposals from Alistair Darling on the banking system and cuts! On banking – to me Labour are hoping that if they use high fallutin titles for new structures like – Council for Financial Stability – which just means the same people all meeting each other but with a different label – that we will all believe they are doing something rather than moving the deckchairs around on the Titanic. I just think when we are presented with re-structuring as a solution – it means that they just don’t know what to do! It’s not rocket science. They need to stop paying themselves massive bonuses and get the banks to lend money to solvent businesses!

Spurs laid on a dinner for about 20 people in a very nice restaurant as they want to get to know a supportive group of MPs and Lords. Obviously David Lammy MP (Tottenham) and I were there as the local MPs – but it was interesting to find other MPs including Hilary Benn and Iain Duncan Smith were also Spurs mad! Behind the dinner is really the journey they are now on to make the new stadium a reality. I think the plans are fantastic and am more than happy to help them in any way I can – as were all the politicians.

Lastly – I did an interview for BBC Parliament / BBC News Chanel on Speaker Bercow’s proposal that we scrap the very quaint but in my view ridiculous language we use in the chamber like ‘Honourable, learned and brave Member’ etc. I was set against Sir Nicholas Winterton – so no marks for guessing who was the traditionalist and who was the moderniser!

UPDATE: You can watch an extract from the BBC here.