Steve Brine MP spoke in the House of Commons during a debate on the renewal of the Coronavirus Act and on putting the roadmap into law.
Winchester’s MP has voiced his concerns about certain sections of the Act which can only be extended for 6 months or not at all.
As well as voicing issue with Section 8, 24 and 14, Steve joined with the Member of Parliament for Wycombe in criticising Schedule 21 and 22, which give powers relating to potentially infectious persons and powers to issue directions relating to events, gatherings and premises.
But he identified several sections which, having consulted with local NHS leaders and national professional bodies, he said were needed for a period longer.
The MP gave a balanced conclusion to his speech, saying; “I think we’re rather hoisted by our own petard on the renewal of this act. Six months is too long, it doesn’t fit the roadmap, but that’s what the Act says.
“So, it’s take it or leave it territory and ‘leave it’ would have consequences too, even if it left behind some parts of the Act, I’ve said I don’t like.
“There is no perfect here and I can’t, in all good sense, allow this to be a binary good vs evil choice. It’s not.
“Government should deliver on its roadmap, it should keep on retiring parts of the act, which it can do on the two-monthly schedule and make very sure we’re not back here in 6 months’ time because I think they’ll get a very different answer from this House of Commons.”
The Coronavirus Act was extended a further six months, following an overwhelming vote in Parliament. Steve Brine did not support the renewal; choosing to abstain along with many of his Conservative colleagues.