GM Public Debate Window Dressing

tliouk office at
Tue Jun 3 23:05:37 BST 2003


The government is sponsoring a nationwide public debate on whether to 
allow GM crops to be grown in the UK. 

The public debate process, as it currently stands, is seen to be 
severly flawed. 

The process begins in June with six regional debates at the following 
locations around the country: 
Birmingham - NEC, Tuesday 3rd June, at 3pm 
Swansea - Brangwyn Hall, Thursday 5th June at 6pm 
Taunton - Holiday Inn, Saturday 7th June at 2pm 
Belfast - Kings Hall, Monday 9th June at 2pm 
Glasgow - Quality Hotel, Wednesday 11th June at 6pm 
Harrogate - Yorkshire Showground Pavilions, Friday 13th June at 2pm

After these events, local councils and interested members of the 
public will be invited to run their own debates, through June and 
July. The findings will then be drawn up and submitted to the 
government in September. What is frankly confusing is that the GM 
Public Debate Steering Board is said to be the independent body 
canvassing the views of the public.The GM Public Debate Steering 
Board are an independent steering board which has been set up to 
organise the debate at arm's length from Government. The Members of 
the GM Public Debate Steering Board have diverse backgrounds and hold 
a range of views about GM issues. The Steering Board will report to 
Government in September 2003 on public views on GM emerging from the 
debate. Government has undertaken to respond formally to the report 
from the debate and to show how it has taken into account the public 
views expressed in the debate in developing Government policy on GM. 

The GM Debates by the GM Public Debate Steering Board which are 
taking place in London:
Thursday 12 June 2003 10:30 - 13:00 
Thursday 17 July 2003 10:30 - 13:00 
Tuesday 19 August 2003 10:30 - 13:00 
Tuesday 16 September 2003 10:30 - 13:00

So how do the Regional debates fit in with this? Are they just window 

A final commercialisation decision will be made next year, after the 
results of the Farm Scale Evaluations have been published. 

You can register for tickets to the regional debates with the 
Government's Central Office of Information. Call Lee Hancock on 020 
7261 8616 or 020 7261 8528. 

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