Armed Forces Bill Dropped

Mr_Fingerz

LE
Book Reviewer
#1
#2
The Prime Minister must be kicking himself for believing Mr Blair's throwaway remark about wishing that he had "done more in his first year". Perhaps he should have listened to Mr Jay's commentaries on ministerial duties as delivered by Sir Humphrey.

This is yet another brave decision Prime Minister.

B
 
#3
Armed forces bill dropped as ministers 'duck covenant pledge' | UK news | The Guardian (c) The Grauniad

Yes it's from the Guardian, but it does show that CMD is running away from his commitment to the Military Covenant.
The Guardian article is as good as any, but the Telegraph and the Mail have covered the story too, links here:
Government delays vote on Armed Forces Bill - British Armed Forces Federation

The Bill has not been dropped altogether. Apart from the so-called enshrining the military covenant in the legislation, according to the House of Commons website the key areas covered by the Bill are said to be:

Key areas

Renews the 2006 Armed Forces Act for a further five years
Makes provision for the Secretary of State to make an annual report to Parliament on the military covenant
Extends statutory inspections by her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary to the Service police and makes further provision for the independence of Service police investigations from the chain of command. The Bill will also improve procedures for maintaining standards within the MOD Police
Confers new powers on judge advocates to authorise entry and search of certain premises; and on the Secretary of State to make provision for Service police to access special categories of material such as bank records
Develops the procedures for the redress of complaints by Service personnel
Introduces a bespoke military scheme for the testing of Service personnel for alcohol and drugs, in line with the provisions of the Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003, from which the military is exempt
Extends the jurisdiction of the new courts and procedures, which were established in the Armed Forces Act 2006, to prisoners of war.
 
#4
All the Service Police bits are covered already in recent changes to legislation, so imagine most others have been, no need for another Act.
 

seaweed

LE
Book Reviewer
#5
Does not the 2006 Act expire this year, meaning there HAS to be a 2011 Act? And if that is the case it would seem to make sense to pull together odds and bits of legislation relating to AF policing etc, all into one place.
 
#6
Does not the 2006 Act expire this year, meaning there HAS to be a 2011 Act? And if that is the case it would seem to make sense to pull together odds and bits of legislation relating to AF policing etc, all into one place.
You are correct. The validity of the 2006 Act has been extended annually by Order of Council but would expire at the end of 2011 if the present Bill was not passed. Expiry would potentially remove parliamentary authority for the standing armed forces of the United Kingdom.

The Bill would also make various changes within the framework of the 2006 Act, those relating to Service Police and the MoD Police coming under the following headings:

Provost Marshal’s duty in relation to independence of investigations

Inspection of service police investigations

Provost Marshals: appointment

Ministry of Defence Police: performance regulations
 
#7

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