Backbench Bills: Fur Bill set to become law

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The Independent Online
NEW LEGISLATION including moves to prevent the keeping of animals only for the commercial value of their fur is likely to become law this parliamentary session after several backbench Bills received government support.

The Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill introduced by Maria Eagle, the Labour MP for Liverpool Garston, was the second in the top seven of Private Members' Bills. It received its first formal reading this week.

Usually backbench Bills have little chance of becoming law because of lack of parliamentary time if opposed but this session many have government support.

A Bill to tighten protection of children by drawing up a list of people unsuitable to work with them heads the queue of proposed laws, introduced by Debra Shipley, the Labour MP for Stourbridge.

Labour's Eric Clarke (Midlothian) seeks, through his Mental Health (Amendment) (Scotland) Bill, to clarify powers of hospital managers to hold or dispose of patients' property.

The Referendums Bill, introduced by Tory Andrew Robathan (Blaby), aims to ensure public money and broadcasting time are fairly divided between the two sides in such poll campaigns .

Labour's Gordon Prentice (Pendle) wants a Right to Roam Bill, and Tory Simon Burns (Chelmsford W) calls for a tighter clamp on soccer hooliganism. The Liberal Democrat Mark Oaten (Winchester) is introducing an adoption Bill for children and parents in more than one country.