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Andrea Leadsom, the Leader of the House of Commons, tabled the motion for the debate following a statement (made on 8 February 2018) on the Report from the Cross-Party Working Group on an Independent Complaints and Grievance Policy.

The motion endorses the Working Group’s recommendations and provides for the establishment of a Behaviour Code for Parliament, and procedures and support to give the recommendations effect:

That this House endorses the recommendations of the Working Group on an Independent Complaints and Grievance Policy; and asks the House of Commons Commission to authorise House officials, reporting regularly to a steering group of Members and others, to undertake the work necessary to establish:

1. a Behaviour Code for Parliament that covers bullying and harassment, and sexual harassment, and applies to all persons working for or with Parliament, or who are lawfully on the parliamentary estate;

2. an independent complaints and grievance scheme to underpin the Code, together with associated policies, appropriate sanctions and the contractual arrangements necessary for delivering the scheme;

3. particular procedures to deal with reports of sexual harassment, including the provision of a specialist Independent Sexual Violence Advocate;

4. a system of training to support the Code;

5. a human resources support service for staff employed by Members of Parliament or jointly by political parties, delivered by a third-party provider, and a handbook for these staff; and to identify any amendments that may be necessary to Standing Orders and the Code of Conduct, for the approval of the House.

The motion has been signed by all the Commons members of the Working Group.

The Working Group’s Report was published on 8 February 2018.

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