Legislation / Legal

Defra: A ban on using wild animals in travelling circuses in England is now a significant step closer after the draft Wild Animals in Circuses Bill was introduced in Parliament last week.  Under the proposals all travelling circuses in England must stop using wild animal acts by December 2015.
Press release & links
 
HO: The Home Office was successful in defending Immgiration Rules changes introduced to test migrants English language capabilities. The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal by Mrs Saiqa Bibi and Mrs Saffana Abdulla Mohammed Ali in their Judicial Review challenging the lawfulness of part of the family Immigration Rules.
Press release & links
 
Ofcom:  Ofcom has fined TalkTalk £750,000 for making an excessive number of abandoned & silent calls to potential customers in 2011, through two of its call centre operators. This follows an investigation as part of Ofcom’s monitoring & enforcement programme aimed at reducing harm caused by abandoned & silent calls.
Press release & links
 
HO: The Home Office supported a conference held last week (on National Stalking Awareness Day) to help frontline practitioners get to grips with 2 new stalking offences

It comes after the law was changed in November to make stalking a specific crime in England & Wales for the first time. The new legislation is part of a range of government action to help victims, including funding the Suzy Lamplugh Trust to operate the National Stalking Helpline.
Press release & links ~ HO:  Turning the ‘hunters’ into the ‘hunted’ (3rd item)
 
ScotGov: A new bill introduced to the Scottish Parliament recently could see Scotland adopt a new tax to replace UK Landfill Tax and tackle illegal waste disposal while bringing benefits to community and environmental groups.  The Landfill Tax (Scotland) Bill will see Scotland take responsibility from the UK Government for administering landfill tax. 
 
If passed, the Bill will help tackle the problem of unauthorised dumping activity and encourage the proper disposal & recycling of materials. The Bill also introduces a Scottish Communities Fund which will support environmental organisations and provide assistance to communities living in close proximity to landfill sites. 
 
This announcement comes on the same day the Scottish Government launched its Resource Efficient Scotland programme to bring together expertise on managing energy, water & materials costs into a single service for the first time.
Press release ~ Landfill Tax (Scotland) Bill ~ Resource Efficient Scotland
 
ScotGov: 3 & 4 year old children in Scotland will be entitled to 600 hours of funded early learning & childcare through the Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill, published recently. 

The Bill proposes a range of measures, which also include:
* Looked after 2 year olds & those with a kinship care order will receive the same entitlement as 3 & 4 year olds
* A named person for every child & young person from birth to safeguard & support their wellbeing, working with other bodies as required
Press release & links ~ Children and Young People (Scotland) Bill
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