Last night I attended the Annual Tawney Lecture at Westminster Central Hall, although to be fair the word "Lecture" is perhaps inaccurate. What it consisted of was a discussion between Ed Balls, Elaine Storkey, and Ann Holt on the issue of families and their importance.
What was good about the discussion is that where there was disagreement there were the expected platitudes, but also the understanding of other views, a respect for those views, and indeed taking them into account. Ed Balls (seen here in the white shirt in the photos) spoke on families being the No 1 priority for his Department and that whilst the DCSF might not have helped poorer families as much in the past that is certainly changing. There was also the assertion, contradicting Elaine Storkey slightly that teenage pregnancies were falling not rising and that, contrary to media speculation, most single parents tended to be over thirty as opposed to being teenagers.
I am not sure what will entirely come out of this, but there is the reassurance that family values are a top priority for Labour, albeit coupled with a refusal to stigmatise those who do not fall into that category and that those individuals/groups are just as valued.