THIS week the major piece of legislation in Parliament was the Data Protection Bill which, although sounding rather dull, had significant potential to impact the ‘Fourth Pillar’ of the State – otherwise known as the media’s ability to be free from influence by the Government.
There was an amendment to the Bill support by the opposition which would have seen another Leveson-style inquiry set up and significant consequences for all media outlets if any individual decided to take them to court. Regardless of the outcome in the courts, the outlet would have had to pay the legal fees for the accuser. More on this can be read here.
Thankfully these amendments were voted down and journalists can continue to report and investigate issues in a manner free of external influence.
Back home, Glascote has become one of nine areas across the West Mids to get a share of £4million, as part of the West Midlands Combined Authority’s (WMCA) new three-year Employment Support Pilot Schemes, to help people get into work. As well as helping people find work, the pilot also aims to equip low paid workers with the skills needed to land better jobs.
Overall, the programme is targeting around 4,500 people across the nine areas, with a particular focus on young people, disabled people and other vulnerable groups. The money is being made available to the WMCA by the Department for Work and Pensions as part of the transfer of powers and funding from Whitehall to the West Midlands following the region’s decision to form a combined authority, led by an elected mayor.
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