Alan Meale

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Joseph Alan Meale is the Labour MP for Mansfield. He entered Parliament in 1987.



Alan Meale was one of 206 MPs to sign the March 2007 Early Day Motion 1240 calling for the positive recognition of NHS homeopathic hospitals[1].

In June 2010, Meale signed Early Day Motions 285: Effect of Homeopathic Remedies on Breast Cancer Cells[2], 286: Homeopathic Medicines in the Treatment of Moderate to Severe Depression[3], and 287: Homeopathy and Chronic Primary Insomnia[4]. A few days later he signed the additional EDM 342: British Medical Association Motions on Homeopathy[5].

In May 2011, Alan Meale signed Early Day Motion 1820 which welcomed a campaign to "place homeopathy research on the national agenda as a credible scientific field of inquiry" and called for the Government to facilitate research into homeopathy[6].

In July 2013, Alan Meale signed EDM 323: Successful Use of Homeopathy in Farming[7] which noted "positive results from the homeopathic remedies" used on sheep and called for "a study into the level of homeopathic usage by farmers, what results have been achieved and what potential homeopathy offers for prevention of disease amongst livestock".

Herbal Medicines

Alan Meale has signed a number of Early Day Motions that support the use of herbal medicines. These include EDM 1103: Traditional Herbal Medicinal Products Directive (2005)[8], EDM 1549: Herbal Clinic at The Royal London Homeopathic Hospital (2008)[9], EDM 2080: Herbal Remedies (2008)[10], and EDM 295: Statutory Registration of Herbalists (2009)[11].

In May 2013 Alan Meale proposed EDM 148: Statutory Regulation of Practitioners of Traditional and Herbal Medicine which stated:

"That this House is aware that the statutory regulation of traditional herbal medicines practitioners and acupuncturists has been supported for many years by the Health Care Professional Council and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency who believe that, like osteopaths and chiropractors, they should be subject to statutory guidance; notes that the Department of Health has over the last eight years set up three working groups to examine the introduction of such guidance; and calls on the Government to take, without delay, such measures as are necessary to ensure that the supply and delivery of these many useful traditional medicines and practices are brought into line for the benefit of patients who are prescribed them."[12]


In May 2008 in the abortion amendments to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill (now Act), Alan Meale voted to keep the current time limit of 24 weeks in line with the scientific and medical consensus[13].

Mitochondrial Donation

Mitochondrial donation or mitochondrial transfer (or, in newspaper headlines, "three-parent babies") covers a number of related medical procedures carried out as part of IVF to allow women who carry mitochondrial diseases to give birth to children whose cells contain mitochondria from a donor and hence would not inherit the disease. Some religious groups had said that such procedures should not be allowed[14].

Mr Meale was one of the signatories to an October 2013 declaration that said "the creation of children with genetic material from more than two progenitor persons, as is being proposed by the United Kingdom Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, is incompatible with human dignity and international law."[15]

Mr Meale subsequently voted against allowing mitochondrial donation in February 2015[16]. If allowed, mitochondrial donation would be regulated by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) meaning that there would be ongoing assessment of the safety and efficacy of such procedures. An October 2014 briefing report by the HFEA, which had been investigating the issue for three years, stated that there was no evidence to show that mitochondrial donation was unsafe[17].The majority of MPs voted in favour of allowing mitochondrial donation.

Faith based Adoption Agencies

In 2007, Alan Meale signed Early Day Motion 742 calling on the government to exclude "faith based" adoption agencies from the Equality Act to avoid such agencies being forced to consider gay couples.[18]

Climate Change

In January 2010, Alan Meale signed Early Day Motion 524: Recognising Climate Change which states that "this House agrees that climate change is happening and is man-made" and calls this statement a "fact, which has the support of the overwhelming majority of the scientific community"[19].

Science Research

Science Funding

In September/October 2010, Alan Meale signed Early Day Motions 707: Government Funding for UK Science[20], and 767: Science is Vital Campaign[21]. Both motions supported investment in science in the face of cuts anticipated in the coalition government's forthcoming spending review.

Note that Alan Meale also proposed Early Day Motion 829: Government Funding of the Arts[22].

Animal Experiments

In June 2012 Alan Meale proposed Early Day Motion 216: Use of Stray Cats and Dogs in Laboratory Experiments. The motion stated:

That this House is aware that consideration is currently being given by the Government to adopt an EU-wide law permitting the use of stray dogs and cats in laboratory experiments for what are described as `essential studies relating to the health and welfare of animals or serious threats to the environment or to human health'; understands that in 2010 in the UK 3,727 dogs and 152 cats specifically bred for scientific testing were used in experiments in UK laboratories, with such testing also carried out on 10,138 rabbits; believes such practices to be both abhorrent, barbaric and unjustifiable under any circumstances; and calls on the Government to cease giving any consideration to these practices whilst at the same time giving notice to the scientific community that it intends to move quickly towards a total ban on animal experimentation throughout the UK.[23]

Some background on the EU/stray part of this EDM:

Same-Sex Marriage

Alan Meale voted in favour of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill at both its second reading in February 2013[24] and its third reading in May 2013[25].



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