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This week's top stories

GM crops should not be assumed to be dangerous

It is likely that Genetically Modified (GM) crops will need to be used to meet the challenge of feeding a growing Global population, says the Science and Technology Committee.

The report ‘Advanced Genetic Techniques For Crop Improvement: Regulation, Risk And Precaution’ (HC 328) also finds that the EU’s current regulations threaten to prevent GM crops from reaching the market.

How does it affect me?

If you are employed in the agriculture industry, if you are concerned about how science should drive policy decisions or have concerns about genetically modified foods, this will be of interest to you.

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More progress can be made on Universal Credit

The Public Accounts Committee finds that little progress has been made in the implementation of Universal Credit in its report ‘Universal Credit: Progress Update’ (HC 810).

Since the programme began in 2010, £700 million has been spent on Universal Credit, but fewer than 18,000 people were claiming it by October 2014, although this is expected to rise by February 2015.

How does it affect me?

If you are employed in the employment sector, if you receive benefits that may be changed by the ntroduction of Universal Credit or if you have concerns about the fficiency of Government programmes, this will be of interest to you.

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Free childcare places must not come at extra cost to parents

Free places offered to parents for the care of younger children often come with extra costs, says ‘Affordable Childcare’ (HL 117).

The report, by the Select Committee on Affordable Childcare examines the Government’s provision of early years education and childcare for younger children.

How does it affect me?

If you work in education or childcare for younger children, are the parent of a younger child or if you are concerned about the free provision of childcare, this will be of interest to you.

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