Jesse Norman Cycling minister
Thursday 5 October 2017 14.24 BST
Laura Laker accuses me of “headline-grabbing hypocrisy” in relation to the safety of cyclists. That’s quite an extreme reaction to my announcement of a review whose specific purpose is to improve the safety of all road users, especially in relation to cyclists.
As I made clear, the review will address two key issues. The first is legal: whether the law is defective in the case of bodily harm or death from a cyclist, and specifically whether, as the rule of law demands, there is an adequate remedy here. Our aim is to complete this work early in the new year.
The second issue is broader: how to make the roads safer for all users. After the legal review there will be a public consultation, and road user groups and the general public will be invited to submit their views and evidence then.
To be clear: I am a keen cyclist myself, and I am absolutely aware of the number of cyclists killed and injured every year. The purpose of the review is to make our roads safer for all users, and the safety of cyclists will be a key element of that.
Far from “ignoring the bigger problem”, we are shining a light on it. Far from “rushing to judgment”, we are moving forward in a phased and measured way.
It’s never good when a journalist accuses someone unfairly, let alone (as in this case) without making any effort to contact them and get their views. As a cyclist herself, Laker should be welcoming this initiative, not denouncing it.
Jesse Norman, cycling minister