A number of important proposed laws have been lost due to Boris Johnson’s suspension of Parliament.
All the work done on 13 bills is effectively now wasted as the new Parliament will have to start the process of scrutinising them from the start when it returns on October 14 – and some will not have another opportunity to get Parliamentary time.
The planned laws included legislation to bring in tougher sentences for animal cruelty, reform divorce law and protect public toilets.
The government chose to carry over only three bills. This included preparatory work for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and a law planning the second stage of the HS2 railway from West Midlands to Crewe.
It said that its new “legislative agenda” would be revealed in the Queen’s Speech when Parliament returns.
Here are some of the government bills that have been dropped:
This bill would have increased the maximum penalty for animal cruelty from six months to five years.
It would have brought the law in England and Wales in line with legislation already in place in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Battersea Dogs & Cats Home Home said on Twitter they are “very disappointed” that the bill fell and called on the government to bring it back “as soon as possible”.
This planned law would have meant couples who had drifted apart could start immediate divorce proceedings.
At the moment couples must wait two or five years to officially separate, unless there are any allegations such as cheating.
Domestic abuse bill
This law would have brought in a definition of domestic abuse in the aim of helping more people come forward.
The bill had cross-party support and aimed to help both victims and the public understand what type of behaviour constitutes domestic abuse.
Among other changes the new legislation would also stop the cross-examination of victims by their abusers in the family courts and establish a Domestic Abuse Commissioner.
The Mirror reported that Labour MP Jess Phillips said: “Domestic abuse victims are simply collateral damage of party politicking.”
Women’s Aid has now demanded a “clear, public commitment” that the legislation will be brought back after prorogation.
A government spokesperson said it is “absolutely committed to legislating to support victims of domestic abuse”.
This bill would have removed business rates for any buildings that had a public toilet.
The snappily named Non-Domestic Rating Public Lavatories Bill would have meant public toilets would be cheaper to run and potential stopping any future closures.
This change in the law would have added two voluntary questions about gender identity and sexual orientation ahead of the 2021 census.
LGBT charity Stonewall had praised the bill, stating that “Historically lesbian, gay and bi people have been a hidden population”.
A number of bills that have dropped off were Brexit related, including the Trade Bill.
This would have given the UK powers to set up new trade deals, and had been going through the parliamentary process since 2017.
It would have also set up a Trades Remedies Authroity.
The bill was close to be being passed but due to some changes made in the House of Lords, the government could have lost their vote in the Commons.
This meant the bill could not have been carried over, with the government able to only pass it or lose the vote.
This bill was seen as key post-Brexit legislation and would have allowed the UK to manage fisheries within its own territorial waters.
After Brexit, the UK will no longer be part of the EU Common Fisheries Policy and will become an “independent coastal state” with full responsible for managing surrounding waters.
The shadow fisheries minister Luke Pollard said on Twitter that the bill falling was a “a gross betrayal” of fishing and coastal communities.