Bill Etherington

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Bill Etherington was the Labour MP for Sunderland North until standing down in 2010.

In December 2006, Etherington announced he would not stand again at the next general election when his constituency will be abolished.[1]

Healthcare

Homeopathy

Etherington was one of 206 MPs to sign the March 2007 Early Day Motion 1240 calling for the positive recognition of NHS homeopathic hospitals[2].

Abortion

In May 2008 in the abortion amendments to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill (now Act), Bill Etherington voted for the abortion time limit to be lowered to 16 weeks against scientific and medical consensus which is currently 24 weeks[3]. After four separate parliamentary votes on varying time limits, the majority of MPs voted to keep the abortion time limit at 24 weeks, in keeping with scientific and medical consensus, hence no abortion amendments were added to the bill.

MMR Vaccine

Bill Etherington signed the February 2009 Early Day Motion 754: MMR Vaccine and the Media supporting the use of the MMR vaccine. The motion expressed disappointment with the reporting of the vaccine by Jeni Barnett on her LBC radio show in January 2009, and expressed the hope that future reporting of the issue of MMR would be less sensationalist and more evidence-based.[4]

Animals in Medical Research

In 2006, Bill Etherington signed Early Day Motion 1850: Animals in Medical Research which noted that "animal research is only permitted where there is no better alternative and that pain and suffering are minimised and balanced against the potential benefit to humans and animals", supported "the building of the new state of the art biomedical research laboratory at Oxford University", condemned "unlawful animal rights extremism, including any violence, harassment or intimidation of those associated with lawful animal research", and supported "the well-regulated use of animals in medical research".[5]

Miracle Cures

In June 2008, the MP signed Early Day Motion 1770, protesting the uncritical promotion by the media of Dore, a claimed miracle cure for dyslexia, in the absence of scientific proof of its value. [6]

Religion

Freedom of Religion

Bill Etherington signed the March 2007 Early Day Motion 1770 supporting freedom of religion and welcoming the launch of the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain[7].

Creationism

Bercow signed Early Day Motion 2708 calling for schools to treat with caution creationist literature sent by the religious group 'Truth in Science'.[8]

Charles Darwin

Bill Etherington was one of 79 MPs who signed Early Day Motion 377 noting the achievements of Charles Darwin, and calling for Darwin's birthday to be designated a public holiday to honour "one of the fathers of modern science and one of Britain's greatest, if not the greatest, scientific minds."

Libel Law Reform

In January 2010, Bill Etherington signed Early Day Motion 423 calling for a reform of the English libel law[9]. The motion noted that human rights activists, scientists, writers and journalists are currently prevented from publishing, and the public prevented from reading, matters of strong public interest due to the chilling effect of the law.

Climate Change

In January 2010, Bill Etherington 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"[10].

References

  1. http://www.sunderlandtoday.co.uk/ViewArticle2.aspx?SectionID=1107&ArticleID=1923137 retrieved 2006-12-06
  2. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2006-07/1240
  3. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200607/cmselect/cmsctech/1045/104502.htm
  4. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2008-09/754
  5. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2005-06/1850
  6. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2007-08/1770
  7. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2006-07/1770
  8. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2005-06/2708
  9. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2009-10/423
  10. http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2009-10/524

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