On November 7, King Charles III delivered his speech in the Palace of Westminster. He addressed the Lords and members of the House of Commons about his focus for the United Kingdom.
This was the first King’s speech in over 70 years. King Charles III outlined what his Ministers’ focus for the country moving forward was.
Cost of Living
King Charles III stated that his Ministers’ aim to increase the economic growth of Britain, as well as to focus on “safeguarding the health and security of the British people for generations to come”.
Support will be given to the Bank of England to reduce inflation to target. This will be done by “taking responsible decisions on spending and borrowing”.
The Government will also continue taking action to reduce inflation in hopes of easing the cost of living for families.
The King stated how his government will “help businesses find new jobs and investment”.
A future bill to reform the housing market was also announced in his speech. This reform would make it “cheaper and easier for leaseholders to purchase their freehold”. It would also fight the exploitation of homeowners regarding punitive service charges.
Renters and landlords will both benefit from a reform, the King stated. Renters will have a stronger security regarding tenure and better value. Landlords will be able to regain their properties when needed with certainty.
Longer jail sentences
In his speech, the King outlines a plan that will see serious offenders gain longer prison sentences. His aim is to “increase the confidence of victims”.
Legislation to give more power to the police and the criminal justice system will be brought forward. The King wants to prevent new and complex crimes, such as child sexual abuse (including grooming) and digital enabled crime.
Following the emergence of new digital crimes, “at a time when threats to national security are changing rapidly” because of emerging technology, security and intelligence services are to receive the powers they need, including stronger independent judicial oversight.
Public premises will be protected from terrorism by the introduction of new legislation in wake of the Manchester Arena attack.
King Charles III praises the UK’s security in his speech, saying that it will “continue to champion security around the world”. He wants to invest in the Armed Forces, as well as support veterans moving forward. The UK will also be taking steps to strengthen NATO and support Ukraine.
NHS support and stricter rules on vapes
Work is to be done to cut wait times and change the long-term workforce of the NHS. This plan will train doctors and nurses and include minimum service levels to prevent strikes from affecting patients’ safety.
A smoke-free Britain is in sight as the King declares the aim to restrict the sales of tobacco. This legislation will see that children aged 14 or younger today will never be able to legally buy a cigarette or tobacco in the UK.
E-cigarettes and vapes will face restrictions on sales and marketing to make them less appealing to children.
Support of emerging industries
“New legal frameworks” are to be supported by the government that will see safe commercial development of new industries, such as self-driving vehicles.
The UK will also continue leading international discussions to make sure that Artificial Intelligence is being developed safely.
New steps are to be introduced to support young people in gaining the knowledge and skills they need to succeed. The introduction of the Advanced British Standard will bring technical and academic routes to a single qualification.
Proposals are to be made that will stop young people going into “poor quality university degrees”, and “increase the number undertaking high quality apprenticeships”.
Energy security and the environment
A Bill to support the future licensing of new oil and gas fields was proposed. This bill aims to help the UK move to net zero by 2050 without adding extra burdens to households.
Britain will continue to “lead action on tackling climate change and biodiversity loss”, the King stated. The country will also aid developing countries with their energy transition.
King Charles III stated that his Government will “deliver a long-term plan to regenerate towns and put local people in control of their future”.
Legislation will include the safeguarding of football clubs, and a bill is to be introduced to deal with “the scourge of unlicensed pedicabs in London”.
Immigration and Migration
The Illegal Migration Act that was passed earlier this year has been promised to be delivered upon. The King wants to make certain that it is the government deciding who is allowed into this country, and not “criminal gangs”.
The King called these changes “difficult but necessary” for the benefit of the country.
He said: “By taking these long-term decisions, my Government will change this country and build a better future.”
He ends his speech by addressing Members of the House of Commons and his Lords, stating that estimates for public services and other measures will be set out for them.
Featured Image Credit: gov.uk