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Division Details - Lords House of Lords

17:05, 11 October 2017, Division 1: Armed Forces (Flexible Working) Bill [HL]

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My Lords, first I thank all those who contributed to this important debate. In his defence, the Minister has returned very frequently, as he did in Committee and earlier, to describing what is going to happen for the individual. That is all very important and very worthy, and I am not questioning that—none of us is. That is not where we are coming from. The issue is about the use of “part-time” in primary legislation when the phrase has no legal meaning and has, over the years, changed in its interpretation. How will it remain absolutely the same as it is today in 10 or 15 years’ time, as he suggested, when it will by then be part of the Armed Forces Act 2006, where it will remain as a term of service? I accept that there are criticisms, which need to be looked at, as to exactly what we have proposed. But I was sincerely hoping that there would be a further chance to examine between us the way in which this extra type of flexible working can be provided for in law. Clearly he is not prepared to move even in that direction so, with reluctance, I intend to test the opinion of the House.

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