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Wednesday, 20 June, 2001, 11:15 GMT 12:15 UK
Queen's Speech: At-a-glance
The key points of Labour's programme for government over the next parliamentary session:


Attempt to create sound public finances to enable investment in and the reform of public services.

The government plans to keep interest rates, inflation and employment levels stable.

The Enterprise Bill will see the "radical reform" of the competition regime to end anti-competitive behaviour, with the sanction of criminal penalties.

The period of bankruptcy will be reduced.

The Office of Fair Trading will be strengthened.


Legislation will be introduced to drive up standards and increase diversity in secondary schools.

The school system will be deregulated, giving private, voluntary and faith organisations a greater role in management.

More freedom will be given to head teachers and school governors.


An NHS Reform Bill will further "modernise" the health service.

Power will be devolved from Whitehall down to "frontline NHS organisations", with the eventual aim of seeing 75% of NHS spending resting in the hands of health professionals.

Funding will be passed to local primary care trusts instead of health authorities.

Patients will be given a greater say in the way the health service is run through "democratically elected local bodies".

The General Medical Council will be "modernised" to reform professional self-regulation.

A bill will be published to reform the NHS in Wales in line with the National Assembly's Plan for Wales.


A Criminal Justice Bill will bring in the sentencing review.

It will be possible to retry someone acquitted of murder where there is compelling new evidence.

Rules governing the registration of offenders under the Sex Offenders Act will be strengthened.

Corruption law will be reformed, the public and private sector will be dealt with on the same basis and MPs and foreign public officials will be covered.

The Proceeds of Crime Bill will establish a Criminal Assets Recovery Agency.

The Football (Disorder) Act will be extended.

The police and the courts

The Police Bill will reform police powers and procedures and establish a new police complaints system.

A Criminal Courts (Reform) Bill will reform the system.

Welfare reform

A Welfare Reform Bill will require partners of those claiming benefits to attend "work-focused interviews".

Incapacity Benefit will also feature in the bill.

The bill will also increase the rate of Statutory Maternity Pay and Maternity Allowance to 100 a week, and the payment period will rise from 18 to 26 weeks.

The Pension Credit Bill will guarantee a minimum level of income. Pensioners savings will be encouraged by the system.

The Tax Credit Bill will introduce a new tax credit for families with children - the money will be paid to the main carer of the child, usually the mother.


A draft bill will be set out to create a single regulator for the media and communications industry - Ofcom.

Lords reform

The House of Lords Bill will create a partially elected upper house. The remaining hereditary peers will be removed.

Female representation

A bill will be put forward to enable political parties to "bring in more women" via all women shortlists if they desire.


A draft bill will set out the proposals in Lord Cullen's inquiry into rail safety.

A bill will bring in concessionary travel fares for men and women aged 60.

House buying

A new form of tenure for flat-owners, the "commonhold" will be created.

A bill will enable electronic conveyancing and secure better protection against squatters.

House buyers will gain "greater transparency to chains of transaction".


The Adoption and Children Bill will encourage more people to adopt.


A free vote will be held on the future of hunting with hounds.

Foreign affairs

The European Communities (Amendment) Bill will enable the UK to ratify the Nice Treaty.

The EC (Finance) Bill will make community budgeting uniform.

The Export Control & Non-Proliferation Bill will put into force recommendations on arms exports made by the 1996 Scott report, giving some parliamentary scrutiny to the process.

The UK will push for the enlargement of the UN security council to 24 members.

The government will "encourage universal observance of human rights".

An International Development Bill will put into law the UK's aim to reduce poverty in the developing world.


A Climate Change Programme will attempt to exceed the UK's commitments on climate change set out under the Kyoto Treaty.

Key stories




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