Tackling illiteracy in prisons

Some 60 per cent of prisoners are functionally illiterate. An inability to read inevitably hinders the rehabilitation of thousands of prisoners, particularly when they leave prison and try to find a job.

Schools together

Alistair Lexden is a strong supporter of partnership between state and independent schools.

School children need milk

No one doubts that milk is good for children. By law milk must be available during school hours, but too many children today are not drinking it regularly with serious consequences for their health.

Political instability in Northern Ireland

On 16 January the power-sharing Executive in Northern Ireland collapsed. Fresh elections are to be held on 2 March. There are some who argue that progress could be assisted by involving the Irish Republic more closely in Ulster’s affairs.

More young voters needed

According to the Electoral Commission, three out of every ten youngsters who are eligible to vote are not on the electoral registers in Britain today. There are a number of ways in which this serious state of affairs could be remedied.

Protecting press freedom

How is the freedom of the press—a crucial element of the British way of life—to be reconciled with the individual’s right to privacy on a new, permanent basis in the aftermath of the Leveson report?

This much-discussed issue was the subject of a debate in the Lords on December 20.

Northern Ireland: Gay equality advances

On November 9 (see below) Alistair Lexden introduced amendments to a Bill under discussion in the Lords to extend to Northern Ireland a scheme for England and Wales under which homosexual men can secure official pardons for convictions under cruel and discriminatory laws that have now been abolis

Calling the police to account

On November 8, an independent report by Sir Richard Henriques QC was published on Operation Midland, the name given to the Metropolitan Police’s investigation of allegations of sexual abuse which failed to identify any wrong-doing and brought immense distress to many people, including Lord Bramal

Visa problems

Great concern has been expressed by British universities about the damaging effects of immigration policy on the country’s ability to remain highly attractive to overseas students.