Baroness Hodgson of Abinger Portrait

Baroness Hodgson of Abinger

Conservative - Life peer


Scheduled Event
Friday 9th September 2022
Legislation - Main Chamber
Women, Peace and Security Bill [HL] – second reading
View calendar
Select Committee Meeting
Monday 12th September 2022
16:00
Select Committee Meeting
Monday 17th October 2022
16:00
Division Votes
None available
Speeches
Tuesday 12th July 2022
International Development Strategy: Volunteering
My Lords, I think we all recognise the benefits to young people of going abroad in a volunteering capacity, the …
Written Answers
Tuesday 2nd August 2022
Coroners: Isle of Wight
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether there is a backlog for inquests in the Isle of Wight; and if so, …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Wednesday 8th June 2022
Women, Peace and Security Bill [HL] 2022-23
A Bill to support women in UK sponsored and supported conflict prevention, peace processes, mediation and diplomatic delegations; to ensure …
Tweets
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Baroness Hodgson of Abinger has voted in 304 divisions, and 13 times against the majority of their Party.

23 Feb 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 33 Conservative Aye votes vs 188 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 367 Noes - 214
2 Feb 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 40 Conservative Aye votes vs 165 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 359 Noes - 188
7 Dec 2020 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 16 Conservative Aye votes vs 143 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 287 Noes - 161
1 Dec 2020 - Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (All Tiers) (England) Regulations 2020 - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 27 Conservative Aye votes vs 178 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 64 Noes - 246
20 Oct 2020 - Agriculture Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 4 Conservative Aye votes vs 205 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 282 Noes - 244
22 Sep 2020 - Agriculture Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 6 Conservative Aye votes vs 185 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 307 Noes - 212
23 Jun 2020 - Corporate Insolvency and Governance Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 7 Conservative Aye votes vs 191 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 155 Noes - 326
10 Jun 2021 - Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development etc.) (England) (Amendment) Order 2021 - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 1 Conservative Aye votes vs 202 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 260 Noes - 229
14 Dec 2021 - Charities Bill [HL] - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 3 Conservative Aye votes vs 80 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 18 Noes - 81
16 Mar 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 3 Conservative Aye votes vs 102 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 112 Noes - 107
16 Mar 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 15 Conservative Aye votes vs 19 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 75 Noes - 35
5 Apr 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 6 Conservative Aye votes vs 146 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 187 Noes - 151
5 Apr 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Baroness Hodgson of Abinger voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 8 Conservative Aye votes vs 132 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 177 Noes - 135
View All Baroness Hodgson of Abinger Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Conservative)
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
(8 debate interactions)
Baroness Sugg (Conservative)
(7 debate interactions)
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (Conservative)
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
(5 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Department of Health and Social Care
(10 debate contributions)
Home Office
(8 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Baroness Hodgson of Abinger's debates

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Baroness Hodgson of Abinger, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Baroness Hodgson of Abinger has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Baroness Hodgson of Abinger has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Baroness Hodgson of Abinger


A Bill to support women in UK sponsored and supported conflict prevention, peace processes, mediation and diplomatic delegations; to ensure systematic gender consideration and responsiveness in UK foreign and defence policy; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading
Wednesday 8th June 2022
(Read Debate)
Next Event - 2nd Reading
Friday 9th September 2022

Baroness Hodgson of Abinger has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


208 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
8 Other Department Questions
27th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answers by Baroness Stedman-Scott on 20 June (HL780) and 23 June (HL1082), what were the range of factors taken into account when considering whether to nominate a candidate to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW); and what led to them to their decision not to nominate a candidate this time.

Ministers considered a range of factors when deciding whether to nominate an independent candidate for election to the CEDAW Committee, including the time and resources to mount a campaign, the potential benefits and the impact on other international elections. Following analysis of these factors Ministers decided not to nominate candidate for the 2022 election.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
20th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Stedman-Scott on 20 June (HL780), why they have not nominated a candidate for the forthcoming election to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women; and whether they will consider putting forward a candidate for the election in 2024.

The UK strongly supports the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and it is committed to advancing women’s rights. We are committed to the CEDAW process and regularly engage with the UN and the Committee. Ministers consider a range of factors when deciding whether to nominate an independent candidate for election to an international body such as the CEDAW Committee, including the time and resources to mount a campaign, the potential benefits and the impact on other international elections. The Government will decide whether to nominate a candidate for the 2024 election closer to the time, taking these factors into account once again.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will be nominating someone for next year’s elections to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women.

The next election for members of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women will take place later this month. The Government has not put forward a candidate. The election after this will be in 2024 and the Government will decide nearer the time whether to nominate a candidate.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Jun 2022
To ask the Parliamentary Works Sponsor Body how much money they have spent so far on drawing up plans for the Restoration and Renewal of the Houses of Parliament.

Since the creation of the Sponsor Body in April 2020 to the end of March 2022, the Sponsor Body and Delivery Authority spent an estimated £212 million on the Restoration and Renewal Programme. This includes costs for design work, surveys, preparation of the detailed and costed plan (also known as business case development), programme management, staffing the two organisations, and data and digital services. All of the spend to date has been in accordance with the Restoration and Renewal Programme remit to progress the work required under the Parliamentary Buildings (Restoration and Renewal) Act 2019.

A further £87 million of R&R funding for 2022/23 has been agreed by the Commissions of both Houses and the Parliamentary Works Estimates Commission.

10th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park on 8 March (HL13434), how they are selecting women’s civil society organisations to be consulted in relation to COP26; and whether they will publish a list of all those consulted.

We recognise that progress on gender equality can drive progress on climate action and vice versa. This is why the COP26 unit’s dedicated civil society and youth engagement team is working with diverse individuals and groups to amplify the voices of those most impacted by climate change in the run up to COP26, including women and girls. The team welcomes engagement with organisations that have an interest in gender-responsive climate action.

The COP President-Designate has regular engagements with the Friends of COP and Civil Society and Youth Advisory council. When selecting the membership of these groups, inclusivity was at the centre of our approach. We have strived to ensure they have global representation, expertise and influence, as well as gender balance. The membership of both of these groups is publicly available as deposited papers in the UK Parliament's Libraries. The 6 weekly calls the COP26 unit runs with civil society and youth organisations is an open invite to ensure that we are consulting the broadest range of groups in the run-up to COP26, and we encourage, in particular, those from the global south and most marginalised groups to join.

To mark International Women’s Day on 8 March, the COP26 unit profiled the pioneering work of women climate actors from across the world on COP26 social media channels and through a panel event.

The COP President-Designate is committed to meeting with civil society and youth during his international visits and in February, met with inspiring women climate leaders in Nepal. The UK COP26 presidency is aware that we cannot tackle climate change effectively without ensuring inclusion is placed front and centre of our climate action.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
1st Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the relationship between the Government Equalities Office and the Equality Hub.

The new Equality Hub, in the Cabinet Office, brings together the Disability Unit, Government Equalities Office, Race Disparity Unit and, from 1 April, the sponsorship of, and secretariat to, the Social Mobility Commission. The Government Equalities Office’s remit related to gender equality, LGBT rights and the overall framework of equality legislation for Great Britain. The Equality Hub reports to Ministers who have other portfolios outside of the Cabinet Office, led by the Minister for Women and Equalities Liz Truss.

The Equality Hub has a key role in driving Government priorities on equality and opportunity. The Hub has a particular focus on improving the quality of evidence and data about disparities and the types of barriers different people face, ensuring that fairness is at the heart of everything we do.

Key to this is looking beyond a focus solely on statutory protected characteristics to ensure we understand how different issues interact, including in socio-economic and geographic inequality. In this way, the Equality Hub is key to driving progress on the Government’s commitment to levelling up opportunity and ensuring fairness for all.

1st Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they are meeting the UK's responsibilities under the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women; and how they are ensuring that women can participate in non-governmental and civil society organisations.

The CEDAW Committee published their concluding observations in March 2019, following submission of the UK’s eighth periodic report and examination. We are grateful to the Committee for their consideration. We take our CEDAW responsibilities seriously and will be reporting our progress to the Committee in due course.

Non-governmental and civil society organisations play an important role in the reporting and examination process, and representatives from the Government Equalities Office meet with them regularly.

The Government has invested over £750 million in the charity sector so that they can continue their vital work through the COVID-19 outbreak. This includes £10 million funding for charities providing safe accommodation for victims of domestic abuse and £15 million for 2020/21 from the Tampon Tax Fund.

13th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to highlight the importance of ensuring women’s participation in peace negotiations, in particular in Afghanistan, at the G7 summit on 11 to 13 June.

Gender equality is at the heart of our Presidency of the G7 this year, centred around the themes of ending violence against women, women’s economic empowerment, and education for women and girls. To support this the Prime Minister has reconvened the Gender Equality Advisory Council.

The UK has championed women’s meaningful participation in peace processes, including in Afghanistan, South Sudan and Yemen and supported grassroots women building peace and countering violent extremism. The UK remains committed to supporting Afghanistan on its path to a more peaceful and positive future. Only a negotiated and inclusive settlement will safeguard the rights and freedoms that Afghans want and deserve. We will continue to make clear to all sides that any Afghan-led political settlement must preserve progress, including protection for women and minorities.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to make a statement at the G7 summit on (1) the safety of women engaged in peace processes, and (2) the provision by G7 countries of funding (a) bodyguards, and (b) other security measures for women involved in global peace processes.

Gender equality is at the heart of our Presidency of the G7 this year, centred around the themes of ending violence against women, women’s economic empowerment, and education for women and girls. To support this the Prime Minister has reconvened the Gender Equality Advisory Council.

The UK has championed women’s meaningful participation in peace processes, including in Afghanistan, South Sudan and Yemen and supported grassroots women building peace and countering violent extremism. The UK remains committed to supporting Afghanistan on its path to a more peaceful and positive future. Only a negotiated and inclusive settlement will safeguard the rights and freedoms that Afghans want and deserve. We will continue to make clear to all sides that any Afghan-led political settlement must preserve progress, including protection for women and minorities.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
1st Feb 2021
G7
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether members of the Women 7 will be asked to participate in the G7 summit; and, if so, how their views will feed into the discussions.

The Government is engaging regularly with UK civil society and other organisations, including the Women 7, to inform our Presidency policy agenda. We look forward to this dialogue continuing as we prepare for the G7 Leaders’ Summit. Details on the Advisory Council will be set out in due course.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
1st Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether UK civil society organisations have put forward a representative for the G7 Gender Equality Advisory Committee.

The Government is engaging regularly with UK civil society and other organisations, including the Women 7, to inform our Presidency policy agenda. We look forward to this dialogue continuing as we prepare for the G7 Leaders’ Summit. Details on the Advisory Council will be set out in due course.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
1st Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how the UK members of the G7 Gender Equality Advisory Committee will be selected.

The Government is engaging regularly with UK civil society and other organisations, including the Women 7, to inform our Presidency policy agenda. We look forward to this dialogue continuing as we prepare for the G7 Leaders’ Summit. Details on the Advisory Council will be set out in due course.

Lord True
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
25th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government why covered arenas in riding schools have been included in the same category as indoor gyms and sports halls when prohibiting their reopening following their closure as part of the restrictions in place to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Government has published guidance on GOV.UK on the phased return of sport and recreation, in line with the latest medical advice. The guidance for the public on outdoor sport and recreation has recently been updated to clarify that equestrian covered arenas can be used, provided social distancing guidelines can be followed. These facilities are not considered ‘indoor’ for the purposes of this guidance as they are large, open and well-ventilated structures. The guidance can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and-recreation.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
25th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they will lift the restrictions in place to address the COVID-19 pandemic on the use of covered arenas in riding schools.

The Government has published guidance on GOV.UK on the phased return of sport and recreation, in line with the latest medical advice. The guidance for the public on outdoor sport and recreation has recently been updated to clarify that equestrian covered arenas can be used, provided social distancing guidelines can be followed. These facilities are not considered ‘indoor’ for the purposes of this guidance as they are large, open and well-ventilated structures. The guidance can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and-recreation.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
25th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) the ongoing restrictions in place to address the COVID-19 pandemic on the use of covered arenas in riding schools; and (2) the risk that riding schools will be at risk of closure if those restrictions remain in place over the summer months.

The Government has published guidance on GOV.UK on the phased return of sport and recreation, in line with the latest medical advice. The guidance for the public on outdoor sport and recreation has recently been updated to clarify that equestrian covered arenas can be used, provided social distancing guidelines can be followed. These facilities are not considered ‘indoor’ for the purposes of this guidance as they are large, open and well-ventilated structures. The guidance can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and-recreation.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
16th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to reinstate the practical 4-year apprentice scheme for the building industry in light of the reduction in skilled workers in this sector since the UK’s departure from the EU.

This is a matter for the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education. I have asked its Chief Executive, Jennifer Coupland, to write to the noble Lady and a copy of her reply will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
14th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to provide teaching and mentoring in English language and culture to recently arrived Afghan refugees; and how they plan to deliver this.

We know that language skills are crucial to help people integrate into life in England, as well as to break down barriers to work and career progression. This is why we want to support all new arrivals to England to secure the English language skills they need.

All Afghans being resettled through both the Afghan Relocation and Assistance Policy and the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme will be granted ‘indefinite leave to remain’ and therefore are eligible from arrival for funding through the Adult Education Budget, including English language courses. They will also receive a package of integration support to help them acclimatise, learn English and find work, which will enable rapid self-sufficiency and social integration. We will be working with the private, voluntary and community sectors to harness a whole of society effort to address this challenge.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether teachers are prioritised to receive a COVID-19 vaccination regardless of age; and if not, what plans they have to prioritise teachers to receive such vaccinations.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are the independent experts who advise the government on which vaccine/s the UK should use and provide advice on who should be offered them. The JCVI advises that the first priorities for the COVID-19 vaccination should be the prevention of mortality and the maintenance of the health and social care systems. As the risk of mortality from COVID-19 increases with age, prioritisation is primarily based on age.

For phase 1, this will capture all those over 50 years of age and all those 16 years of age and over who are clinically extremely vulnerable or have certain underlying health conditions. This captures almost all preventable deaths from COVID-19 and will include thousands of staff in the education, childcare and children’s social care workforce.

The JCVI has been asked by the Department for Health and Social Care to give its advice on the optimal strategy to further reduce mortality, morbidity and hospitalisation from COVID-19 disease for phase 2 of the vaccine rollout. The JCVI have advised that the second phase of vaccine prioritisation should continue to be based on age. They advise that an age-based approach remains the most effective way of reducing death and hospitalisation from COVID-19 and will ensure more people are protected more quickly. The second phase of the vaccine rollout will begin from mid-April and will aim to offer every adult aged 18 and over a first dose of the vaccine by 31 July 2021.

21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether special provision is made to help children with special needs of military serving personnel.

All teachers in state-funded schools across England and Ministry of Defence (MoD) schools overseas are teachers of children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), with duties to identify and meet these needs as they arise.

The Children’s Education Advisory Service within the MoD provides advice and guidance to Service parents, educational establishments and local authorities on educational issues relating to Service children, including issues relating SEND.

For those Service families living in England, the SEND Code of Practice has a specific section covering ‘Children of Service personnel’ (pages 219-221) that recognises that those SEND children whose parent(s) are Service personnel may face difficulties that are unique to the nature of their serving parent’s employment, namely service induced mobility and deployment. This section reiterates the requirement to have regard to this Code of Practice and to meeting the aspirations of the Armed Forces Covenant, which attempts to eliminate or mitigate some of the potential disadvantages faced by Service families.

UK legislation does not generally apply to Service families living outside the UK. Nevertheless, for those Service families based overseas, the MoD seeks to mirror so far as is reasonably practicable the support that would be normally be available in the UK. The MoD also undertakes a thorough assessment to determine whether families’ support needs can be met in overseas locations before an overseas assignment is agreed.

The MoD employs a team of educational psychologists, and other professionally qualified individuals, to assess need and provide support for children with SEND. MoD schools overseas routinely support children with SEND, in line with the statutory guidance contained in the Department for Education’s 2015 SEND Code of Practice. In overseas locations without MoD schools, assessments are made to ensure that host nation schools are able to provide any required SEND support before an overseas assignment is agreed.

9th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they plan to introduce legislation to prevent the sale in the UK of international holidays which steer tourists towards visiting attractions involving animals that have been treated cruelly.

This Government takes the welfare of all animals seriously and as set out in the Government's Action Plan for Animal Welfare, we are committed to promoting high animal welfare standards both at home and abroad.

Tourists, here, are being offered holiday packages overseas involving unacceptably low-welfare animal activities, attractions, and experiences. Animals that are part of tourist attractions with high levels of human interaction are often subjected to cruel and brutal training practices to ensure their compliance. Reputable and responsible tour operators should not be offering activities that create animal welfare issues. The Association of British Travel Agents has published guidelines and lists activities which have been classified as unacceptable. Holidaymakers should be encouraged to do research and be informed to make the right choices that benefit wildlife.

We support measures which ensure that money from tourists from this country is not channelled towards animal experiences abroad that involve the unacceptable treatment of animals.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to seek to progress legislation to make provision about the welfare of certain kept animals that are in, imported into, or exported from Great Britain, in (1) the current, and (2) the next, parliamentary session.

In May 2021 we published the Action Plan for Animal Welfare, which sets out the Government's ambitious programme of legislative and non-legislative measures to further improve our high standards of animal welfare. As a key part of delivering this plan, we introduced the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill in June 2021. The Bill provides enhanced protections for pet, farmed and kept wild animals in Great Britain.

The Bill completed Commons Committee Stage in November. Since introduction, the Government has added a new pet abduction offence to the bill and extended the primates measure to Wales. We have also consulted on the use of powers in the Bill to tackle puppy smuggling. The Government is committed to this Bill and it will progress in its current form as soon as Parliamentary time allows.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to make illegal the baiting of electric fences with honey and other substances designed to attract wildlife.

In England, wildlife is protected by law through legislation such as the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017.

Section 11 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 prohibits certain methods of killing or taking wild animals. Under subsection 2(c), a person will be guilty of an offence if they set in position any electrical device for killing or stunning, calculated to cause bodily injury to any wild animal included in Schedule 6 of that Act, such as badgers and hedgehogs. It is also an offence under regulation 45 of the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 to use electrical and electronic devices capable of killing or stunning, for the purpose of capturing or killing a European protected species, or for any of the protected species listed on Schedule 4 of those Regulations.

The Government has no current plans to introduce further legislation to prohibit conduct involving the 'baiting' of electric fences with honey and other substances designed to attract wildlife.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
13th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will be extending the time to register historic footpaths and rights of way beyond 1 January 2026 to reflect the interruption in this work due to (1) Brexit, and (2) the COVID-19 pandemic.

Deferring the 2026 cut-off date for registration of historic rights of way is a possibility, which would create more time for the reforms to rights of way legislation to be implemented effectively. However, we must weigh this against the desire for certainty around where rights of way exist, which implementing the cut-off date will bring. Officials will continue to keep this under review in consultation with the Stakeholder Working Group.

Lord Benyon
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they take when they identify that new buildings or developments interrupt historic footpaths, bridlepaths or rights of way; and whether those steps include the creation of diversions to ensure such paths and rights of way are not lost.

Public rights of way are a local issue and this matter is the responsibility of local highway authorities, usually the County Council. It is for the local authority to take the necessary action to resolve conflicts between building and the rights of way network, such as creating orders to extinguish, divert or create a new path.

The Planning Inspectorate (PINS) administers rights of way cases on behalf of Defra, including confirming orders and dealing with cases where the decision has been challenged. If an order is confirmed, then it is for the authority to decide the appropriate action to take regarding any obstruction. PINS does not have the power to make orders itself to overcome planning issues or to direct a local authority to make one.

Lord Benyon
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
10th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the danger that cyclists can pose to horse riders; and what plans they have to mitigate this danger on shared routes.

Public rights of way are a local matter and are handled by individual local highway authorities.

Local authorities are required to keep a Rights of Way Improvement Plan (ROWIP) to plan improvements to their network, which is usually available on the authority’s website. I would hope local authorities, whenever possible, would look at the needs of all users, including walkers, cyclists and horse-riders. Safety must be a consideration in this process.

Local authorities receive most of their rights of way funding from central Government through the Revenue Support Grant to deliver various duties, including ROWIPs. It is not ring-fenced and we cannot say how much authorities should spend on ROWIPs. It is up to local authorities to manage their own budgets and decide how much they should spend on their different duties, and for local people to hold them to account.

Lord Benyon
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
10th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to open more farmland and off-road areas for horse riders.

Public rights of way are a local matter and are handled by individual local highway authorities.

Local authorities are required to keep a Rights of Way Improvement Plan (ROWIP) to plan improvements to their network, which is usually available on the authority’s website. I would hope local authorities, whenever possible, would look at the needs of all users, including walkers, cyclists and horse-riders. Safety must be a consideration in this process.

Local authorities receive most of their rights of way funding from central Government through the Revenue Support Grant to deliver various duties, including ROWIPs. It is not ring-fenced and we cannot say how much authorities should spend on ROWIPs. It is up to local authorities to manage their own budgets and decide how much they should spend on their different duties, and for local people to hold them to account.

Lord Benyon
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
10th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that bridle-paths are prevented from being tarmacked.

Public rights of way are a local matter and are handled by individual local highway authorities.

Local authorities are required to keep a Rights of Way Improvement Plan (ROWIP) to plan improvements to their network, which is usually available on the authority’s website. I would hope local authorities, whenever possible, would look at the needs of all users, including walkers, cyclists and horse-riders. Safety must be a consideration in this process.

Local authorities receive most of their rights of way funding from central Government through the Revenue Support Grant to deliver various duties, including ROWIPs. It is not ring-fenced and we cannot say how much authorities should spend on ROWIPs. It is up to local authorities to manage their own budgets and decide how much they should spend on their different duties, and for local people to hold them to account.

Lord Benyon
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the peer review for the Review of the Evidence for Sentience in Decapod Crustaceans and Cephalopod Molluscs report has been completed; and when the accompanying Seafish Report into welfare risks facing these sea creatures will be published.

Defra has commissioned an independent external review of the available scientific evidence on sentience in decapods and cephalopods. This review and the Seafish Report are both expected to be published shortly.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what legislation is in place that expressly recognises animals as “sentient beings” and requires Government to pay full regard to animals as sentient beings in formulating and implementing policy, now that Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU no longer applies in UK law.

Now that we have established a new relationship with the European Union, we have a unique opportunity to shape future animal welfare policy in the UK to ensure our already high animal welfare standards are maintained and enhanced.

There has never been any question that this Government's policies on animal welfare are driven by the fact that animals are sentient beings. We have committed to bringing in new laws on animal sentience. Any necessary changes required to domestic legislation will be made in an effective and credible way and will be brought forward when parliamentary time allows.

The Government will ensure that animal sentience is not only recognised in domestic law, but that we will have an effective and proportionate means of taking animal sentience into account in policy making.

Here in the UK, we are already improving animal welfare standards without EU input and beyond the scope of Article 13. The Government is committed to taking action to improve animal welfare at home and abroad, including by increasing maximum sentences for animal cruelty, banning third party sales of puppies, and introducing one of the world's toughest bans on ivory sales. We have also made CCTV mandatory in slaughterhouses and we are planning other reforms. These steps show how seriously this Government gives regard to animal welfare.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
21st Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they insist on animals being raised in a way that conforms to animal welfare standards in the UK when they fund international projects involving farming.

The Government closely monitors the application of environmental, social and governance standards in the multilateral institutions in which it is a shareholder. We are committed to upholding high animal welfare, food safety and environmental standards in all our international projects involving farming. The policies implemented are bespoke to each country, but we are clear that we will seek to raise animal welfare standards wherever possible.

The Government also plays an important role in ensuring that multilateral institutions focus on animal welfare in their work. For example, the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office has worked with the World Bank's International Finance Corporation on its "IFC Good Practice Note on improving animal welfare", which is now being used by many development finance and private sector investors.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of COVID-19 on reaching the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 both in the UK and globally.

COVID-19 is the biggest crisis of a generation and has a wide range of primary and secondary impacts, as set out in a recent UN report on the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19.

The crisis is ongoing and therefore a full assessment of its impacts on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) both domestically and globally is not possible at this stage. The COVID-19 crisis poses real risks for eroding progress on the SDGs, and the associated economic slowdown will increase the challenge of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, especially in light of the challenges highlighted prior to the COVID-19 outbreak in the UN SDGs Report 2019.

The UK remains committed to the achieving the SDGs both domestically and globally. The SDGs will play a key role in post-COVID-19 recovery, recognising the connection between healthy lives, healthy societies and a healthy environment. It is more important than ever that we work to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they have taken to ensure that gender-based violence will be a strategic priority in the COVID-19 Global Humanitarian Response Plan.

The UK is deeply concerned about the surge in gender-based violence (GBV) during the COVID-19 pandemic. We have consistently encouraged the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs to prioritise GBV within the Global Humanitarian Response Plan (GHRP) through bilateral channels and joint advocacy with other donors. Revising the GHRP to explicitly include a standalone objective on GBV will prove lifesaving for women and girls.

Whilst we are pleased to see improvements in how GBV is being addressed overall in the GHRP, the UK will continue to champion a standalone objective on GBV in future versions. All UN agencies and international actors must demonstrate that the shadow pandemic of GBV is taken seriously in the global response to COVID-19 and be held accountable for addressing GBV.

6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to increase the amount of funding allocated to the Rapid Response Facility to an amount commensurate to the delivery capacity and reach of non-governmental organisations.

Decisions on allocating funds through the Rapid Response Facility (RRF) are being made in relation to the wider DFID COVID19 response. We have no current plans to increase the amount of funding allocated to the RRF, but will keep the funding under review as we do with all our humanitarian interventions. DFID is also adapting its programmes across its country network to respond to COVID-19 and has committed significant new funding through the multilateral system. We expect NGOs to play a key role in delivery through both these channels, and indeed recognise that in many places NGOs will be best placed to meet the needs of those most vulnerable, at risk and hard to reach. In addition, extra funding has been allocated to NGOs through the DFID Unilever COVID-19 Hygiene and Behaviour Change Coalition.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that UK aid donated bilaterally and through the UN is reaching Rojava in north east Syria.

UK aid continues to reach communities in North East Syria. DFID support is distributed via a number of UN agencies and Non-Governmental Organisations, and targets those in acute need across the North East. It balances provision of vital, life-saving supplies such as food, water, shelter and healthcare, with helping communities recover from life under Daesh occupation, for example, by providing grants to small businesses. DFID has rigorous and robust checks to monitor partners’ activity and ensure aid goes to those in acute need across the North East.

Between April and September 2019, DFID support to Al-Hasakeh, Al-Raqqa and Deir Ez-Zor governorates and provided: over 325,000 medical consultations, over 5,000 food rations; clean drinking water to over 41,000 people, access to education to over 30,000 pupils, and has helped over 5,000 people with business development.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are currently granting licences for arms exports to Turkey; and what plans they have, if any, to suspend the issue of new licences.

Licences for arms exports continue to be issued to Turkey, but only where they are consistent with the Oral Statement to Parliament on 15th October 2019 made by my right hon. Friend the then Foreign Secretary, which clarifies that no export licences are currently being issued to Turkey for items that might be used in military operations in Syria.

All export licence applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria, taking into account all Relevant factors at the time of the application, including how the goods will be used.

HM Government publishes official statistics (on a quarterly and annual basis) about export licences on GOV.UK including detailed information on the type of export licences issued, refused or revoked, by destination, type (e.g. military, other) and a summary of the items covered by these licences.

19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what safeguards are in place to ensure that arms sold by the UK to other countries are not used on civilian populations.

British arms sales are subject to an export licence. All export licence applications are assessed against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria (the ‘Consolidated Criteria’).

The Consolidated Criteria take into account our obligations under the Arms Trade Treaty and other relevant rules of international law. They provide a thorough risk assessment framework and require us to think hard about the possible impact of providing equipment and its capabilities.

HM Government will not grant an export licence if to do so would be inconsistent with the Consolidated Criteria.

14th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what safeguards exist to ensure that weapons sold to other countries are not used on civilian populations.

British arms sales are subject to an export licence. All export licence applications are assessed against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria (the ‘Consolidated Criteria’).

The Consolidated Criteria take into account our obligations under the Arms Trade Treaty and other relevant rules of international law. They provide a thorough risk assessment framework and require us to think hard about the possible impact of providing equipment and its capabilities.

HM Government will not grant an export licence if to do so would be inconsistent with the Consolidated Criteria.

5th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether non-use against civilians is a condition of UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

British arms sales are subject to an export licence. All export licence applications are assessed against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria (the ‘Consolidated Criteria’).

The Consolidated Criteria take into account our obligations under the Arms Trade Treaty and other relevant rules of international law. They provide a thorough risk assessment framework and require us to think hard about the possible impact of providing equipment and its capabilities.

HM Government will not grant an export licence if to do so would be inconsistent with the Consolidated Criteria.

5th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the current status of UK arms supply arrangements with Saudi Arabia; and whether changes have been made to these arrangements in the light of the ongoing conflict in Yemen.

British arms exports are subject to an export licence. All export licence applications are assessed against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria (the ‘Consolidated Criteria’).

As set out in my Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for International Trade’s Written Statement of 7th July 2020, we have developed a revised methodology in respect of all allegations that it is assessed are likely to have occurred and to have been caused by fixed wing aircraft, reflecting the factual circumstances which court proceedings concerned and this revised methodology is in place for international humanitarian law (IHL) assessments when assessing such exports against Criterion 2c of the Consolidated Criteria.

Criterion 2c provides that HM Government will not grant a licence if there is a clear risk that the items might be used in the commission of a serious violation of IHL. Indeed, HM Government will not grant an export licence if to do so would be inconsistent with any part of the Consolidated Criteria.

23rd Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government when Hammersmith Bridge will reopen to motor vehicles.

The London Borough and Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF) owns and is responsible for the maintenance of and repairs to Hammersmith Bridge.

As stated in my response to your previous question [HL6799], the next stage of the project is to reopen the bridge to motor vehicles. London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF) is currently reviewing delivery options and developing a business case for this stage. Providing a schedule for the full reopening is part of this development process.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
9th Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Vere of Norbiton on 9 March (HL6483), when they expect Hammersmith Bridge to re-open.

The London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham (LBHF) owns and is responsible for the maintenance of and repairs to Hammersmith Bridge.

LBHF reopened the bridge to pedestrians, cyclists, and river traffic on 17 July 2021. It commenced work to stabilise the bridge for pedestrians, cyclists, and river traffic on a permanent basis in early March 2022.

The next stage of the project is to reopen the bridge to motor vehicles. LBHF is currently reviewing delivery options and developing a business case for this stage. Providing a schedule for the full reopening is part of this development process.

Whilst the responsibility for maintaining the bridge and making decisions on its repair lies with the LBHF, the Government has taken concrete steps to find a resolution that ensures the permanent reopening of the bridge to all users. A Government-led taskforce, chaired by Baroness Vere, was set up by the Department for Transport (DfT) in September 2020, to work towards the safe reopening of the bridge.

As part of the Extraordinary Funding and Finance Agreement announced on 1 June 2021, the Government has committed to directly contributing up to one-third of the total funding for the project, but no more. This is subject to a commitment from Transport for London (TfL) and the LBHF to do the same.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
28th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many pedestrians were knocked over by cyclists in each of the last three years; and of those, how many sustained serious injuries.

The Secretary of State for Transport has committed to tackling dangerous cycling by making sure the process for prosecuting dangerous cyclists is more straightforward.

The number of reported pedestrian casualties, including seriously injured (adjusted) casualties, in collisions where the pedestrian is hit by a pedal cyclist in each of the last 3 years is shown in the table. The Department does not hold any data on uninjured pedestrians knocked over by pedal cyclists.

Year

Serious (adjusted)

Total pedestrian casualties hit by a pedal cyclist

2018

154

482

2019

134

408

2020

103

308

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
28th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much money they have spent constructing cycle lanes in each of the last five years.

Local highways authorities are responsible for constructing cycle lanes in their areas. On 7 February 2020, the Department published a detailed breakdown of annual investment in cycling and walking from 2016/17 to 2018/19 alongside the first report on progress made towards delivering the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy (CWIS). This includes information on how much funding each local authority received over that period for active travel schemes including cycle lanes. The Department aims to publish shortly an update including a breakdown of annual investment in 2019/20 and 2020/21. Copies of the previous report to Parliament and funding breakdowns by local authority covering the years up to 2018/19 are available in the House libraries as well as on gov.uk.

Some of the information, such as a breakdown of how much capital funding was provided to each local authority for active travel schemes in 2020/21 under the Active Travel Fund, is already available on gov.uk.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
28th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the fourth extraordinary funding settlement for Transport for London includes funding for the repair and reopening of Hammersmith Bridge.

The repair and reopening of Hammersmith bridge to all users, including motor vehicles, remains a government priority.

The fourth extraordinary funding settlement reaffirms this position and includes a commitment from the government, Transport for London (TfL) and London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham (LBHF) to take forward a share of the costs for the repair and reopening of Hammersmith Bridge. Any government funding for the bridge will be subject to the approval of a business case submitted by LBHF to Department for Transport (DfT) and TfL.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many (1) complaints e-scooter trial companies have received, and (2) journeys have been taken in total, since the start of the trials.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of motoring offences in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. However, information on the type of vehicle issued with a motoring offence, including a fine or penalty points is not collected. The Department for Transport does not hold information on any fines issued by the courts. Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) were replaced by Civil Injunctions and Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) in 2014. The Ministry of Justice holds data on CBOs.

Neither the Department for Transport nor the Department for Health and Social Care hold data on e-scooter accidents which have led to admissions.

The Department for Transport has made no assessment based on the Berlin data. Safety of this new mode of transport is very important and a key part of our trials and evaluation. The Department has in place a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation programme for the trials. A final report will be published in spring 2022. Any future rules for e-scooters may not be exactly the same as the rules in trials, but they will be based on the evidence gathered. This evaluation includes a range of data sources and approaches including data sharing arrangements with operators, surveys, interviews and focus groups with users and non-users and interviews with key local and national stakeholders. It will also take account of relevant international evidence.

Approximately three million journeys have been completed by trial participants. Local authorities are responsible for running the trials and information on customer service engagement is not held by the Department.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made as to whether the findings in the Emergency Medical Journal report E-scooter incidents in Berlin: an evaluation of risk factors and injury patterns, published on 7 June, that one in five riders were over the legal drink limit and only one in 100 were wearing a helmet, would be comparable in the UK.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of motoring offences in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. However, information on the type of vehicle issued with a motoring offence, including a fine or penalty points is not collected. The Department for Transport does not hold information on any fines issued by the courts. Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) were replaced by Civil Injunctions and Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) in 2014. The Ministry of Justice holds data on CBOs.

Neither the Department for Transport nor the Department for Health and Social Care hold data on e-scooter accidents which have led to admissions.

The Department for Transport has made no assessment based on the Berlin data. Safety of this new mode of transport is very important and a key part of our trials and evaluation. The Department has in place a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation programme for the trials. A final report will be published in spring 2022. Any future rules for e-scooters may not be exactly the same as the rules in trials, but they will be based on the evidence gathered. This evaluation includes a range of data sources and approaches including data sharing arrangements with operators, surveys, interviews and focus groups with users and non-users and interviews with key local and national stakeholders. It will also take account of relevant international evidence.

Approximately three million journeys have been completed by trial participants. Local authorities are responsible for running the trials and information on customer service engagement is not held by the Department.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many drivers' licence penalty points have been issued in relation to the use of (1) trial e-scooters, and (2) private e-scooters, since the trials began.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of motoring offences in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. However, information on the type of vehicle issued with a motoring offence, including a fine or penalty points is not collected. The Department for Transport does not hold information on any fines issued by the courts. Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) were replaced by Civil Injunctions and Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) in 2014. The Ministry of Justice holds data on CBOs.

Neither the Department for Transport nor the Department for Health and Social Care hold data on e-scooter accidents which have led to admissions.

The Department for Transport has made no assessment based on the Berlin data. Safety of this new mode of transport is very important and a key part of our trials and evaluation. The Department has in place a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation programme for the trials. A final report will be published in spring 2022. Any future rules for e-scooters may not be exactly the same as the rules in trials, but they will be based on the evidence gathered. This evaluation includes a range of data sources and approaches including data sharing arrangements with operators, surveys, interviews and focus groups with users and non-users and interviews with key local and national stakeholders. It will also take account of relevant international evidence.

Approximately three million journeys have been completed by trial participants. Local authorities are responsible for running the trials and information on customer service engagement is not held by the Department.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many anti-social behaviour orders have been issued connected to the use of (1) trial e-scooters, and (2) private e-scooters, since the trials began.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of motoring offences in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. However, information on the type of vehicle issued with a motoring offence, including a fine or penalty points is not collected. The Department for Transport does not hold information on any fines issued by the courts. Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) were replaced by Civil Injunctions and Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) in 2014. The Ministry of Justice holds data on CBOs.

Neither the Department for Transport nor the Department for Health and Social Care hold data on e-scooter accidents which have led to admissions.

The Department for Transport has made no assessment based on the Berlin data. Safety of this new mode of transport is very important and a key part of our trials and evaluation. The Department has in place a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation programme for the trials. A final report will be published in spring 2022. Any future rules for e-scooters may not be exactly the same as the rules in trials, but they will be based on the evidence gathered. This evaluation includes a range of data sources and approaches including data sharing arrangements with operators, surveys, interviews and focus groups with users and non-users and interviews with key local and national stakeholders. It will also take account of relevant international evidence.

Approximately three million journeys have been completed by trial participants. Local authorities are responsible for running the trials and information on customer service engagement is not held by the Department.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many fines have been given out in relation to offences involving (1) trial e-scooters, and (2) private e-scooters, since the trials began.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of motoring offences in the ‘Police Powers and Procedures, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. However, information on the type of vehicle issued with a motoring offence, including a fine or penalty points is not collected. The Department for Transport does not hold information on any fines issued by the courts. Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) were replaced by Civil Injunctions and Criminal Behaviour Orders (CBOs) in 2014. The Ministry of Justice holds data on CBOs.

Neither the Department for Transport nor the Department for Health and Social Care hold data on e-scooter accidents which have led to admissions.

The Department for Transport has made no assessment based on the Berlin data. Safety of this new mode of transport is very important and a key part of our trials and evaluation. The Department has in place a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation programme for the trials. A final report will be published in spring 2022. Any future rules for e-scooters may not be exactly the same as the rules in trials, but they will be based on the evidence gathered. This evaluation includes a range of data sources and approaches including data sharing arrangements with operators, surveys, interviews and focus groups with users and non-users and interviews with key local and national stakeholders. It will also take account of relevant international evidence.

Approximately three million journeys have been completed by trial participants. Local authorities are responsible for running the trials and information on customer service engagement is not held by the Department.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
17th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether disabled persons' (1) railcards, and (2) bus passes, are only valid for use after 9.30am; and if so, (a) why, and (b) what assessment they have made of the impact of such time restrictions on the use of those passes to commute to work.

Unlike most railcards, the disabled persons railcard can be used before 09.30am, with no peak time restrictions on its use.

With regard to bus travel, the English National Concessionary Travel Scheme offers concessionary pass holders free bus travel from 09.30am on weekdays and all day at weekends and on Bank Holidays. The times of the concession were set out in the Transport Act 2000. This allows pass holders to take advantage of the increased operational capacity available after the morning peak travel time.

Under the Concessionary Travel Act 2007, local authorities in England have the power to offer additional local concessions, such as extending the hours of the concession, and three quarters of authorities already do so. This policy area is kept under review.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
22nd Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have held with Transport for London on plans for a Chelsea station on King's Road in proposals for Crossrail 2; and whether such plans are still included in the latest proposals.

Given current affordability constraints, TfL have confirmed that they are not in a position to prioritise investment in Crossrail 2. In the funding agreement reached with the Mayor and TfL on 31 October 2020 it was agreed to prioritise safeguarding activity for the project. The Department for Transport and TfL are now in discussion on updating the safeguarding of the route for the project.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
7th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with Crossrail Limited and Transport for London about plans for a Chelsea station on the Kings Road in the latest Crossrail 2 proposal.

Department for Transport officials have regular discussions with Transport for London (TfL) about Crossrail 2 as joint sponsors for the project. No discussions have taken place with Crossrail Limited, who are a subsidiary of TfL and are responsible for delivering the Elizabeth line only.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
7th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they intend to hold a full-route public consultation for the latest Crossrail 2 proposal.

The next steps for Crossrail 2 will need to be considered in light of the Government led review on TfL’s future financial sustainability and the forthcoming Spending Review.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
6th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answers by Baroness Vere of Norbiton on 16 September (HL7652) and (HL7653), when their review of Transport for London's future financial sustainability is due to report.

The review of TfL’s future financial sustainability has now completed and reported to Government. The outputs of this review are informing ongoing discussions between Government, TfL and the Greater London Authority.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have made a decision on the Crossrail 2 Strategic Outline Business Case; and if not, when they intend to do so.

Crossrail 2 is a jointly sponsored project between my Department and Transport for London (TfL). We need to collectively ensure that Crossrail 2 is affordable before a decision can be taken about the future of the project.

Following the emergency funding package agreed with the Mayor in May 2020 a Government led review on TfL’s future financial sustainability is being undertaken. The next steps for Crossrail 2 will therefore need to be considered in light of this review and the forthcoming Spending Review.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
2nd Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the role of the Department for Transport in (1) managing, and (2) setting the budget of, the Crossrail 2 project; and what other organisations will be responsible for the delivery of that project.

Crossrail 2 is jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport (DfT) and Transport for London (TfL). Both organisations therefore fund the development of the project and as part of this agree annual budgets.

As joint sponsors DfT and TfL oversee an integrated project team tasked with the development of the project. This team comprises of TfL and Network Rail staff

In July this year, TfL published a revised budget. This acknowledged that there were some difficult choices on future major transport schemes such as Crossrail 2 and that they needed to be realistic about its affordability over the next decade. Government continues to discuss next steps for Crossrail 2 as a consequence.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
22nd Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Afghan refugees aged 16 to 24 who have arrived since January will be eligible for the Kickstart Scheme.

All refugees brought to the UK through the Afghanistan Citizens' Resettlement Scheme (ACRS) and the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) have the right to work and will have support in finding employment as part of a comprehensive integration package.

The Department for Work and Pensions will support Afghan refugees who are eligible for the Kickstart Scheme to access it if it is appropriate to their needs.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
14th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to help recently arrived Afghan refugees find employment.

Those coming from Afghanistan to the UK on the resettlement programmes will have the right to work here from day one, as well as immediate access to the benefit system and our existing employment offer, including our £30 billion Plan for Jobs.

Direct, personalised support is available from experienced work coaches in the temporary hotel accommodation where Afghans are staying across the country. Work coaches are there to help with any claims or queries and to provide tailored employment support. Resettling Afghans will also have access to our Refugee Leads Network, which links Jobcentres and organisations working with refugees and those on resettlement programmes, to help them integrate and find employment in local areas. We will also work to ensure that English as a Second or Other Language provision, and other support, is available to those that need it.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether complaints about GPs in England can go to mediation.

The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 governs the National Health Service complaints system. Under the Regulations, those who wish to raise a complaint should raise it with the provider or the commissioner of that service. If the complainant is unsatisfied with the response received, they can escalate their complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman who will make a final decision. The Regulations do not describe a role for the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution or for mediation.

Patients can raise concerns directly with the General Medical Council (GMC) if the complaint relates to a doctor, including general practitioners, rather than the operation of a service such as the practice or another health care professional. The GMC’s online complaint form states which matters it can investigate.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government why in England the process to complain about GPs differs from the process to complain about doctors in hospitals.

The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 governs the National Health Service complaints system. Under the Regulations, those who wish to raise a complaint should raise it with the provider or the commissioner of that service. If the complainant is unsatisfied with the response received, they can escalate their complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman who will make a final decision. The Regulations do not describe a role for the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution or for mediation.

Patients can raise concerns directly with the General Medical Council (GMC) if the complaint relates to a doctor, including general practitioners, rather than the operation of a service such as the practice or another health care professional. The GMC’s online complaint form states which matters it can investigate.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether patients can use the services of the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution when they do not accept the findings of the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 governs the National Health Service complaints system. Under the Regulations, those who wish to raise a complaint should raise it with the provider or the commissioner of that service. If the complainant is unsatisfied with the response received, they can escalate their complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman who will make a final decision. The Regulations do not describe a role for the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution or for mediation.

Patients can raise concerns directly with the General Medical Council (GMC) if the complaint relates to a doctor, including general practitioners, rather than the operation of a service such as the practice or another health care professional. The GMC’s online complaint form states which matters it can investigate.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how patients can appeal the outcome of complaints against GPs in England.

The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 governs the National Health Service complaints system. Under the Regulations, those who wish to raise a complaint should raise it with the provider or the commissioner of that service. If the complainant is unsatisfied with the response received, they can escalate their complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman who will make a final decision. The Regulations do not describe a role for the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution or for mediation.

Patients can raise concerns directly with the General Medical Council (GMC) if the complaint relates to a doctor, including general practitioners, rather than the operation of a service such as the practice or another health care professional. The GMC’s online complaint form states which matters it can investigate.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
24th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Kamall on 22 February (HL6027), how much was spent on the 24.1 billion items of Personal Protective Equipment where China is recorded as the country of origin.

The Department estimates the total cost of the 24.1 billion items to be £10.9 billion.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government who is responsible for giving the COVID-19 booster vaccination to housebound patients; and what is their mechanism for delivery if their GPs have opted out of the COVID-19 vaccination programme.

The National Health Service is responsible for providing COVID-19 booster vaccinations to housebound patients. If a general practitioner (GP) practice is signed up to the Enhanced Service for phase three of the vaccination programme, the practice will provide booster doses to housebound patients or make alternative arrangements. If a practice is not signed up to the Enhanced Service, they will request that the local clinical commissioning group  make arrangements via another Primary Care Network (PCN) grouping or alternative provider.

Some patients may be able to attend a PCN designated site with assistance. Discussions should be held between the GP and the patient’s family and/or carer to facilitate this. For those patients who are unable to travel to a designated site, PCNs have established mobile or roving vaccination teams to deliver COVID-19 vaccines directly in an individual’s home.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether housebound patients are receiving COVID-19 vaccinations in the same timeframe as those who are able to visit vaccination centres in person; and, if not, what is the average delay.

The information is not held centrally in the format requested.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports of cerebral haemorrhage in UK women (1) below 60, and (2) 60 and above, and their link to the (a) Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccination, and (b) Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency has monitored suspected reports of cerebral haemorrhage and thrombosis following COVID-19 vaccination. No direct association between reports of cerebral haemorrhage and the AstraZeneca or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines has been identified in women or men aged either above or below 60 years old. However, a review of reports of specific types of blood clot in cerebral veins, occurring with low platelets concluded that a link with AstraZeneca vaccine is likely. Cerebral hemorrhage may occur because of these events. No link has been identified with the Pfizer vaccine.

There is some evidence that the reported incidence rate of these blood clots is slightly higher in females compared to men, although this is not seen across all age groups. A higher reported incidence rate is seen in younger adult age groups following the first dose compared to the older groups at 21.1 per million doses in those aged 18 to 49 years old and 11.0 per million doses in those aged 50 years old and over. There does not appear to be an increased risk following the second dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine. The advice remains that the benefits of the COVID-19 vaccines outweigh the risks for the majority of people.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the availability of hernia operations varies in different regions of England; and if so, how.

Hernia operations are available from National Health Service providers across England. Demand varies in different areas as not all regions are of the same size or population.

The following table shows the number of finished consultant episodes (FCE) for primary or secondary hernia operations in each region of England in 2020/21 and average waiting times.

Government Office region of residence

FCE

Average waiting time in days

North East

3,470

164

North West

8,120

197

Yorkshire and Humber

6,095

184

East Midlands

4,805

183

West Midlands

4,915

222

East of England

6,525

221

London

8,990

178

South East

10,445

187

South West

8,020

183

Source: NHS Digital Hospital Episode Statistics

Notes:

  1. A FCE is a continuous period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider.
  2. Primary and secondary hernia operations refer to first surgical procedures and secondary follow up operations if needed.
Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many hernia operations were carried out in the NHS in (1) 2018, (2) 2019, and (3) 2020.

The following table shows the number of finished consultant episodes (FCE) for primary or secondary hernia operations in England in 2018/19, 2019/20 and 2020/21.

2018/19

2019/20

2020/21

132,145

121,555

61,385

Source: NHS Digital Hospital Episode Statistics

Notes:

  1. A FCE is a continuous period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider.
  2. Primary and secondary hernia operations refer to first surgical procedures and secondary follow up operations.
Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what the average waiting time is for a hernia operation on the NHS.

The average waiting time for a hernia operation in England is 191 days.

Lord Kamall
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
16th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether a named doctor for a patient over 75 should see that patient, if requested by the patient or their close relatives, if they are very unwell.

Every patient, including those over 75 years old, can request to see a specific general practitioner (GP), including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of the 2015/16 National Health Service General Medical Services Contract practices must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests made by patients to see a particular practitioner and authorised family members have the same rights.

16th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether patients over 75, or their relatives, should be able to communicate directly with their named doctor if they wish to.

Every patient, including those over 75 years old, can request to see a specific general practitioner (GP), including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of the 2015/16 National Health Service General Medical Services Contract practices must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests made by patients to see a particular practitioner and authorised family members have the same rights.

20th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether there have been different instructions for Do Not Resuscitate Orders for (1) disabled patients, (2) dementia patients, and (3) elderly patients during the COVID-19 pandemic; and whether these have only been issued in consultation with relatives.

The Care Quality Commission’s report into how Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) decisions were made during the COVID 19 pandemic, found 508 instances where a DNACPR had been placed on a patient’s record without their agreement or agreement from their families or carers.

The Department remains clear that it is unacceptable for DNACPR decisions to be applied in a blanket fashion to any group of people and should be fully discussed with the individual and their family where possible and appropriate. Over the last year, clinical leaders have issued a number of statements which emphasise personalised approaches to care and treatment and reiterate that there has never been an instruction or directive issued by the National Health Service to put in place blanket DNACPRs due to medical condition, disability or age.

20th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Do Not Resuscitate Orders have been issued during COVID-19 pandemic without consulting either the patient or their relatives.

The Care Quality Commission’s report into how Do Not Attempt Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (DNACPR) decisions were made during the COVID 19 pandemic, found 508 instances where a DNACPR had been placed on a patient’s record without their agreement or agreement from their families or carers.

The Department remains clear that it is unacceptable for DNACPR decisions to be applied in a blanket fashion to any group of people and should be fully discussed with the individual and their family where possible and appropriate. Over the last year, clinical leaders have issued a number of statements which emphasise personalised approaches to care and treatment and reiterate that there has never been an instruction or directive issued by the National Health Service to put in place blanket DNACPRs due to medical condition, disability or age.

22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what progress they have made regarding the consultation on coronial investigations of stillbirths since it closed on 18 June 2019.

Work on analysing the responses to the consultation has been delayed during the COVID-19 pandemic but we hope to publish the response to the consultation as soon as possible.

22nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they conducted a consultation to inform their actions pursuant to section 3 of the Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration etc.) Act 2019; and if so, what the outcome of the consultation was.

The Government has not conducted a consultation to inform actions pursuant to section 3 of the Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration etc.) Act 2019. The Pregnancy Loss Review team has been speaking with women and men with lived experience of pregnancy loss, clinicians, nurses, bereavement midwives, registrars, faith leaders, charities and officials in the United Kingdom and other countries, drawing on other methods for gathering evidence.

19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the NHS England review of prosthetic services has been completed; and if so, when the findings of this review will be published.

The review of prosthetic services was paused in March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The review has now been restarted with the first meeting held at the beginning of October 2020. We expect that the revised service specification will be available for public consultation in December this year with the aim of starting implementation of a revised service model from April 2021.

19th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the NHS Accelerated Access Collaborative has supported new types of socket for prosthetic limbs.

Whilst the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) has not directly provided support specifically for new types of socket for prosthetic limbs to date, partners of the AAC have provided support in this area, including through the Small Business Research Initiative.

22nd Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have plans to use the private healthcare sector to help clear the backlog of healthcare cases caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

National Health Service patients are benefitting from an unprecedented partnership with private hospitals in the United Kingdom as we battle the COVID-19 outbreak. The Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement have worked with the independent sector to secure all appropriate inpatient capacity and other resource across England. This has increased NHS capacity and ensured that more facilities are available for patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

Throughout this period, independent providers have continued to provide urgent operations for NHS patients, as well as their private pay or insured patients.

As part of preparing for winter, the Government has provided an additional £3 billion to the NHS. This will allow the NHS to continue to use the extra hospital capacity acquired from the independent sector and also to maintain the Nightingale hospitals until the end of March.

22nd Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how long they estimate it will take to clear the NHS waiting lists caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Guidance has already been issued to the National Health Service on the process of starting to restore urgent non-COVID-19 services. We have now started to reset NHS services that were rightly suspended whilst we dealt with the initial impact of COVID-19. The approach is being flexed at local level according to capacity and demand in different parts of the country, but the reset will be gradual.

22nd Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to clear the backlog of healthcare cases caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Guidance has already been issued to the National Health Service on the process of starting to restore urgent non-COVID-19 services. We have now started to reset NHS services that were rightly suspended whilst we dealt with the initial impact of COVID-19. The approach is being flexed at local level according to capacity and demand in different parts of the country, but the reset will be gradual.

19th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, under the named GP policy, whether a general practice is allowed to consider that the role of the named GP is for administrative purposes only with the responsibilities being delegated more widely between doctors within that general practice.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP), since the introduction of the named GP scheme in April 2014, do not allow general practices to consider such a role to be for administrative purposes only. This is because patients can request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

In addition, further guidance published in March 2015 for the 2015/16 General Medical Services Contract provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. It makes clear that “Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request”.

22nd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what are the legal responsibilities of a named GP.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP) are set out in the National Health Service (General Medical Services [GMS] Contracts) Regulations 2004 (as amended). The contract (and amendments) include a requirement for all patients to be assigned a named accountable GP who has overall responsibility for that patient’s care. This does not necessarily mean that patients will see their named accountable GP for every appointment. Patients can still request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

The Department has not made a formal assessment into the impact and role of named accountable GPs.

Under the terms of the GMS Regulations, the named accountable GP must take lead responsibility for the coordination of all services required under the contract and ensure they are delivered to each of their patients where required (based on the clinical judgment of the named accountable GP). The 2015/16 GMS Contract Guidance (published in March 2015) provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. A copy is attached. The guidance states: ‘Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request’. This document provides guidance for commissioners, local medical committees and GP practices. This information is also of use to individuals because it explains how named accountable GPs should interact with their patients. The British Medical Association (BMA) has also provided guidance on how practices can fulfil the requirement to provide named accountable GPs for their patients.

Every patient can request to see a specific GP, including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of their contract (as set out in Schedule 3, Part 2 of the Regulations), the GP practice must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests of patients to see a particular practitioner. Authorised family members have the same rights.

Data is not held centrally on the percentage of named accountable GPs in England who have seen the patients they are accountable for.

22nd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the (1) impact, and (2) role, of named GPs since 2015.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP) are set out in the National Health Service (General Medical Services [GMS] Contracts) Regulations 2004 (as amended). The contract (and amendments) include a requirement for all patients to be assigned a named accountable GP who has overall responsibility for that patient’s care. This does not necessarily mean that patients will see their named accountable GP for every appointment. Patients can still request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

The Department has not made a formal assessment into the impact and role of named accountable GPs.

Under the terms of the GMS Regulations, the named accountable GP must take lead responsibility for the coordination of all services required under the contract and ensure they are delivered to each of their patients where required (based on the clinical judgment of the named accountable GP). The 2015/16 GMS Contract Guidance (published in March 2015) provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. A copy is attached. The guidance states: ‘Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request’. This document provides guidance for commissioners, local medical committees and GP practices. This information is also of use to individuals because it explains how named accountable GPs should interact with their patients. The British Medical Association (BMA) has also provided guidance on how practices can fulfil the requirement to provide named accountable GPs for their patients.

Every patient can request to see a specific GP, including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of their contract (as set out in Schedule 3, Part 2 of the Regulations), the GP practice must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests of patients to see a particular practitioner. Authorised family members have the same rights.

Data is not held centrally on the percentage of named accountable GPs in England who have seen the patients they are accountable for.

22nd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what guidance is available to (1) GP practices, and (2) individuals, on how named GPs should interact with their patients.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP) are set out in the National Health Service (General Medical Services [GMS] Contracts) Regulations 2004 (as amended). The contract (and amendments) include a requirement for all patients to be assigned a named accountable GP who has overall responsibility for that patient’s care. This does not necessarily mean that patients will see their named accountable GP for every appointment. Patients can still request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

The Department has not made a formal assessment into the impact and role of named accountable GPs.

Under the terms of the GMS Regulations, the named accountable GP must take lead responsibility for the coordination of all services required under the contract and ensure they are delivered to each of their patients where required (based on the clinical judgment of the named accountable GP). The 2015/16 GMS Contract Guidance (published in March 2015) provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. A copy is attached. The guidance states: ‘Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request’. This document provides guidance for commissioners, local medical committees and GP practices. This information is also of use to individuals because it explains how named accountable GPs should interact with their patients. The British Medical Association (BMA) has also provided guidance on how practices can fulfil the requirement to provide named accountable GPs for their patients.

Every patient can request to see a specific GP, including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of their contract (as set out in Schedule 3, Part 2 of the Regulations), the GP practice must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests of patients to see a particular practitioner. Authorised family members have the same rights.

Data is not held centrally on the percentage of named accountable GPs in England who have seen the patients they are accountable for.

22nd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what rights patients have to see their named GP.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP) are set out in the National Health Service (General Medical Services [GMS] Contracts) Regulations 2004 (as amended). The contract (and amendments) include a requirement for all patients to be assigned a named accountable GP who has overall responsibility for that patient’s care. This does not necessarily mean that patients will see their named accountable GP for every appointment. Patients can still request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

The Department has not made a formal assessment into the impact and role of named accountable GPs.

Under the terms of the GMS Regulations, the named accountable GP must take lead responsibility for the coordination of all services required under the contract and ensure they are delivered to each of their patients where required (based on the clinical judgment of the named accountable GP). The 2015/16 GMS Contract Guidance (published in March 2015) provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. A copy is attached. The guidance states: ‘Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request’. This document provides guidance for commissioners, local medical committees and GP practices. This information is also of use to individuals because it explains how named accountable GPs should interact with their patients. The British Medical Association (BMA) has also provided guidance on how practices can fulfil the requirement to provide named accountable GPs for their patients.

Every patient can request to see a specific GP, including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of their contract (as set out in Schedule 3, Part 2 of the Regulations), the GP practice must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests of patients to see a particular practitioner. Authorised family members have the same rights.

Data is not held centrally on the percentage of named accountable GPs in England who have seen the patients they are accountable for.

22nd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what rights authorised family members have to meet a dependent's named GP regarding care in protracted or complicated cases.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP) are set out in the National Health Service (General Medical Services [GMS] Contracts) Regulations 2004 (as amended). The contract (and amendments) include a requirement for all patients to be assigned a named accountable GP who has overall responsibility for that patient’s care. This does not necessarily mean that patients will see their named accountable GP for every appointment. Patients can still request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

The Department has not made a formal assessment into the impact and role of named accountable GPs.

Under the terms of the GMS Regulations, the named accountable GP must take lead responsibility for the coordination of all services required under the contract and ensure they are delivered to each of their patients where required (based on the clinical judgment of the named accountable GP). The 2015/16 GMS Contract Guidance (published in March 2015) provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. A copy is attached. The guidance states: ‘Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request’. This document provides guidance for commissioners, local medical committees and GP practices. This information is also of use to individuals because it explains how named accountable GPs should interact with their patients. The British Medical Association (BMA) has also provided guidance on how practices can fulfil the requirement to provide named accountable GPs for their patients.

Every patient can request to see a specific GP, including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of their contract (as set out in Schedule 3, Part 2 of the Regulations), the GP practice must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests of patients to see a particular practitioner. Authorised family members have the same rights.

Data is not held centrally on the percentage of named accountable GPs in England who have seen the patients they are accountable for.

22nd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what percentage of named GPs in England have seen the patients they are accountable for who are aged (1) 75 years or older, (2) 18 to 74 years old, and (3) under 18 years old.

The legal responsibilities of the named accountable general practitioner (GP) are set out in the National Health Service (General Medical Services [GMS] Contracts) Regulations 2004 (as amended). The contract (and amendments) include a requirement for all patients to be assigned a named accountable GP who has overall responsibility for that patient’s care. This does not necessarily mean that patients will see their named accountable GP for every appointment. Patients can still request to see a particular GP, although they may have to wait longer for an appointment if they do so.

The Department has not made a formal assessment into the impact and role of named accountable GPs.

Under the terms of the GMS Regulations, the named accountable GP must take lead responsibility for the coordination of all services required under the contract and ensure they are delivered to each of their patients where required (based on the clinical judgment of the named accountable GP). The 2015/16 GMS Contract Guidance (published in March 2015) provides further information on named accountable GPs for all patients. A copy is attached. The guidance states: ‘Where the patient expresses a preference as to which GP they have been assigned, the practice must make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request’. This document provides guidance for commissioners, local medical committees and GP practices. This information is also of use to individuals because it explains how named accountable GPs should interact with their patients. The British Medical Association (BMA) has also provided guidance on how practices can fulfil the requirement to provide named accountable GPs for their patients.

Every patient can request to see a specific GP, including their named accountable GP. Under the terms of their contract (as set out in Schedule 3, Part 2 of the Regulations), the GP practice must endeavour to comply with all reasonable requests of patients to see a particular practitioner. Authorised family members have the same rights.

Data is not held centrally on the percentage of named accountable GPs in England who have seen the patients they are accountable for.

16th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are currently funding women's groups inside Afghanistan.

The UK announced £286m of aid for Afghanistan this financial year. As the Foreign Secretary committed, at least 50% of those we reach with our aid should be women and girls.

We will support women's rights organisations as part of our Afghanistan Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) programme. We are exploring further ways to support women's organisations through our humanitarian programming, and strongly support the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund's work in identifying ways to support NGOs in Afghanistan at scale. We will also continue to work with partners to ensure women continue to play an active role within humanitarian organisations funded by the FCDO.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the decision by Myanmar’s courts to impose the death penalty on (1) Phyo Zeya Thaw, and (2) Ko Jimmy.

The UK Government is deeply concerned by reports that the military have sentenced pro-democracy activists and leaders, including Phyo Zeya Thaw and Ko Jimmy, to death. Both Minister Milling, and the British Embassy in Yangon, have made it clear that the UK opposes the death penalty in all circumstances. On 8 December 2021 we secured a UN Security Council Resolution which called for the release of all those arbitrarily detained. We once again call on the military regime to respect human rights and the rule of law, and will continue to use all available fora to raise our concerns.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the human rights situation in Myanmar.

Myanmar is a Human Rights Priority Country for the UK.

The February 2021 coup has exacerbated the already grave human rights situation. Security forces continued to commit atrocities throughout the country, with credible reports of torture, burning of villages, rape and sexual violence and mass killings. As of June 2022, over 690,000 people have been displaced by military operations, and 14.4 million people are now in humanitarian need. Over 10,000 people remain in arbitrary detention, and we are deeply concerned about reports that the military have sentenced pro-democracy activists and leaders to death. Identity and gender-based violence continue to be a huge problem across Myanmar. Freedom of expression and religious belief continue to be supressed.

We have raised these issues at the UN Security Council, UN Human Rights Council and G7. The UK has also provided £500,000 to the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar, which collects and preserves evidence of human rights violations for future prosecution.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the remarks by Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park on 6 June (HL Deb col 1027), when the new conflict and atrocity prevention hub will be established; where it will be based; and what its remit will be.

The FCDO is creating a dedicated department for conflict prevention and conflict related atrocity prevention within the Office for Conflict, Mediation and Stabilisation. We anticipate that this process will be complete by the end of June, and staff will be based across FCDO's UK offices. The department will design and test a comprehensive approach to upstream conflict and atrocity prevention, while engaging globally with key bilateral partners and multilateral organisations to improve prevention efforts. A new early warning system will also be developed to better identify, understand and respond to conflict and atrocity risks. The department will be the secretariat of a cross-government mass atrocities prevention hub bringing together the expert elements of atrocity prevention that sit with other departments in the FCDO.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports of chemical attacks in Northern Iraq; and what plans they have to ask the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to investigate those attacks.

The United Kingdom opposes any use of chemical weapons. We are aware of claims that Turkey has used white phosphorus (WP) in northern Iraq. WP is not a chemical weapon. Any state using WP must comply with International Humanitarian Law and the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the remarks by the Executive Director of the World Food Programme that there will be increased demand for global humanitarian assistance as a result of the conflict in Ukraine; and what plans they have to increase the UK's humanitarian assistance over the next 12 months.

Global humanitarian need and acute food insecurity is at an all-time high, driven by covid-19, climate change and conflict - with over 300 million people in need of assistance in 2022 and 43 million people living a step away from famine. Until Russia's invasion Ukraine's exports of food and fertiliser were feeding up to 400 million people worldwide. Russia's war is preventing these exports and causing food, energy and other commodity prices to rise, as well as diverting humanitarian resources from pre-existing crises. This is hitting the world's poorest hardest, and increasing global humanitarian needs.

The UK is a major humanitarian donor. We have announced a package to address critical rising food insecurity in the Horn of Africa including £25 million to Somalia, £88 million in Yemen, and pledged £286 million to meet needs in Afghanistan. The UK and our partners secured the largest ever World Bank financial commitment to developing countries affected by Russia's invasion - $170 billion over the next 15 months. The UK has also increased support through the Bank with approximately £730 million in financial guarantees so the Bank can lend more to Ukraine without taking resources from the rest of the world.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to include access to widow camps in North West Syria in their Syria Response Plan.

The UK supports improved access to reach populations in need across Syria. The UK continues to use our position at the UN Security Council to call on all parties to respect agreed ceasefires and we work closely with humanitarian partners, such as the UN and NGOs, to press for improved humanitarian access. The UK has sent a joint letter with six other donors to the UN leadership calling for a more effective response to Gender Based Violence (GBV) across the whole of Syria by ensuring greater prioritisation of critical needs, such as widows camps and more clearly articulated workplans to address them.

The UK funds UN and NGO partners to provide food, non-food items, water, education, healthcare, trauma and psychosocial support, safe spaces for children and victims of GBV and other life-saving assistance to those most in need in north west Syria. In 2021, the UK was the second largest donor to the Syria Cross-border Humanitarian Fund (SCHF), a multi-sector, multi-donor pooled fund that has the flexibility to respond to emergency needs. The SCHF directs support towards the urgent needs of an estimated 2.8 million internally displaced persons in North West Syria, including women and children in widow camps.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what consideration they have given to including widow camps in UN humanitarian programmes.

The UK supports improved access to reach populations in need across Syria. The UK continues to use our position at the UN Security Council to call on all parties to respect agreed ceasefires and we work closely with humanitarian partners, such as the UN and NGOs, to press for improved humanitarian access. The UK has sent a joint letter with six other donors to the UN leadership calling for a more effective response to Gender Based Violence (GBV) across the whole of Syria by ensuring greater prioritisation of critical needs, such as widows camps and more clearly articulated workplans to address them.

The UK funds UN and NGO partners to provide food, non-food items, water, education, healthcare, trauma and psychosocial support, safe spaces for children and victims of GBV and other life-saving assistance to those most in need in north west Syria. In 2021, the UK was the second largest donor to the Syria Cross-border Humanitarian Fund (SCHF), a multi-sector, multi-donor pooled fund that has the flexibility to respond to emergency needs. The SCHF directs support towards the urgent needs of an estimated 2.8 million internally displaced persons in North West Syria, including women and children in widow camps.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what consultations they have had, if any, with (1) the UN, and (2) other donor countries, to advocate for humanitarian access to widow camps in North West Syria.

The UK supports improved access to reach populations in need across Syria. The UK continues to use our position at the UN Security Council to call on all parties to respect agreed ceasefires and we work closely with humanitarian partners, such as the UN and NGOs, to press for improved humanitarian access. The UK has sent a joint letter with six other donors to the UN leadership calling for a more effective response to Gender Based Violence (GBV) across the whole of Syria by ensuring greater prioritisation of critical needs, such as widows camps and more clearly articulated workplans to address them.

The UK funds UN and NGO partners to provide food, non-food items, water, education, healthcare, trauma and psychosocial support, safe spaces for children and victims of GBV and other life-saving assistance to those most in need in north west Syria. In 2021, the UK was the second largest donor to the Syria Cross-border Humanitarian Fund (SCHF), a multi-sector, multi-donor pooled fund that has the flexibility to respond to emergency needs. The SCHF directs support towards the urgent needs of an estimated 2.8 million internally displaced persons in North West Syria, including women and children in widow camps.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have made to the government of Tunisia about democracy and governance in that country.

The UK is concerned by President Saied's decision to dissolve Parliament and the possibility of politicians from the previous government facing criminal charges. At a time when Tunisia faces serious long-term challenges, the need for political engagement and dialogue is greater than ever. The UK has closely monitored the political situation in Tunisia since the changes brought in by President Saied on 25 July 2021, and we will continue to do so. We are monitoring legal cases being brought against politicians from the parliament and previous governments, including allegations of irregularities in the 2019 elections, and are concerned that these could be used to prevent opposition politicians from contesting future elections.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact on democratic governance in Tunisia of (1) the dissolution of Parliament by Tunisian President, Kais Saied, and (2) the President’s stated intent to prevent opposition politicians from standing in elections planned for December.

The UK is concerned by President Saied's decision to dissolve Parliament and the possibility of politicians from the previous government facing criminal charges. At a time when Tunisia faces serious long-term challenges, the need for political engagement and dialogue is greater than ever. The UK has closely monitored the political situation in Tunisia since the changes brought in by President Saied on 25 July 2021, and we will continue to do so. We are monitoring legal cases being brought against politicians from the parliament and previous governments, including allegations of irregularities in the 2019 elections, and are concerned that these could be used to prevent opposition politicians from contesting future elections.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made, if any, of the decision made by the Tunisian President, Kais Saied, to dissolve the Tunisian Parliament without scheduling elections within three months.

The UK is concerned by President Saied's decision to dissolve Parliament and the possibility of politicians from the previous government facing criminal charges. At a time when Tunisia faces serious long-term challenges, the need for political engagement and dialogue is greater than ever. The UK has closely monitored the political situation in Tunisia since the changes brought in by President Saied on 25 July 2021, and we will continue to do so. We are monitoring legal cases being brought against politicians from the parliament and previous governments, including allegations of irregularities in the 2019 elections, and are concerned that these could be used to prevent opposition politicians from contesting future elections.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to investigate who is responsible for reported attacks against refugee and Internally Displaced Persons camps in (1) Northern Syria, and (2) Iraq; and what steps they will take to ensure that the perpetrators do not undertake such attacks in future.

We are aware of reports of attacks carried out by Turkey in both Northern Iraq and Syria and continue to follow the situation closely. FCDO Ministers and senior officials regularly reiterate the need for dialogue and cooperation between Iraq and Turkey to combat terrorism, ensure regional security, and protect civilians. We welcome recent discussions between Iraqi and Turkish Defence Ministers regarding Ankara's military operations against the PKK in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. We welcome the fact that the ceasefire in north west Syria agreed by Turkey and Russia in March 2020 is broadly holding. We are concerned by increased violence in recent months, including frequent airstrikes and daily artillery shelling. It is essential that all parties to the conflict respect the ceasefire and allow humanitarian access. We urge all parties to increase their efforts to adhere to it.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports of bombings carried out on 1 February in (1) Iraq, and (2) Northern Syria, which targeted refugee and Internally Displaced People camps, resulting in (a) multiple casualties, and (b) destruction.

We are aware of reports of attacks carried out by Turkey in both Northern Iraq and Syria and continue to follow the situation closely. FCDO Ministers and senior officials regularly reiterate the need for dialogue and cooperation between Iraq and Turkey to combat terrorism, ensure regional security, and protect civilians. We welcome recent discussions between Iraqi and Turkish Defence Ministers regarding Ankara's military operations against the PKK in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. We welcome the fact that the ceasefire in north west Syria agreed by Turkey and Russia in March 2020 is broadly holding. We are concerned by increased violence in recent months, including frequent airstrikes and daily artillery shelling. It is essential that all parties to the conflict respect the ceasefire and allow humanitarian access. We urge all parties to increase their efforts to adhere to it.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
20th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what progress they have made with donating safe vaccines to help with the international efforts to vaccinate the world, in line with the Communique of the G7 Summit in Cornwall.

Our G7 Presidency in 2021 secured agreement from leaders to commit to sharing at least 870 million doses by June 2022. The G7 has gone further since June, and donated 770 million doses by the end of 2021 and committed to donate an additional 1.2 billion doses.

We have met the UK goal of donating 30 million doses by the end of 2021, as part of our G7 pledge to donate 100 million doses by June 2022. To date, the UK has delivered 23.3 million doses to countries in need of which 17.8 million have been delivered via COVAX and 5.5m doses donated directly. A further 7.5 million doses have been received by COVAX and will shortly be allocated and shipped in line with COVAX's fair allocation model. The Prime Minister said at the G20 in October 2021 that we will donate 20 million further Astra Zeneca doses and 20 million Janssen doses to COVAX and we remain committed to meeting our 100 million pledge in full by June 2022.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th Dec 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of allegations that the government of Turkey is deploying chemical weapons in northern Iraq; and what plans they have to support an independent inquiry into their deployment by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

The United Kingdom opposes the use of chemical weapons in all circumstances. We take any credible evidence of the use of chemical weapons very seriously. We have been monitoring the recent allegations of chemical weapons use in northern Iraq but the allegations remain unsubstantiated. Any evidence should be shared with States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention and provided through appropriate channels to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) Technical Secretariat.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports that Turkey is using chemical weapons in northern Iraq.

We take seriously all allegations of the use of chemical weapons - it is important that the full facts are established. We continue to reiterate the importance of dialogue and cooperation between Iraq and Turkey to combat terrorism, ensure regional security and protect civilians. We welcome discussions between Iraqi and Turkish Defence Ministers regarding Ankara's military operations against the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), a proscribed terrorist group, in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI). The Foreign Secretary discussed the stability of Iraq and the KRI with KRI President, Nechirvan Barzani, during his visit to London of 15-17 September.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Aug 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many officials are working on the Women, Peace and Security Agenda in the Whitehall headquarters of the (1) Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and (2) Ministry of Defence.

Officials in the FCDO and MOD, centrally and across the global network, work collectively to deliver strategic outcomes as part of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda and wider work. Given the breadth of the WPS agenda and global focus, information on the number of officials working on this issue is not held centrally.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many officials are working on the Women, Peace and Security Agenda in the (1) Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and (2) the Ministry of Defence.

As stated in my reply of 6 July, officials in the FDCO and MOD, centrally and across the global network, work collectively to deliver strategic outcomes as part of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda and wider work. Given the breadth of the WPS agenda and global focus, information on the number of officials working on this issue is not held centrally.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what the overall official development assistance reduction to (1) Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, and (2) Family Planning, will be this financial year; and whether there has been an impact assessment of the effects of these reductions.

The Foreign Secretary provided thematic ODA allocations for 2021/22 in a written ministerial statement which included £1,305 million allocated to global health. FCDO spend by sector is calculated using OECD-DAC sector codes. Details of FCDO spend by sector code for 2021 will be available in the Statistics on International Development publication in Autumn 2022 and details of FCDO spend for 2022 will be available in the Statistics on International Development publication in Autumn 2023. FCDO programme sector codes are available on DevTracker.

The impact of the global pandemic on the economy has forced us to take tough but necessary decisions, including within our global health portfolio. The aid budget has been allocated in accordance with UK strategic priorities against a challenging financial climate. Officials considered any impact on women and girls, the most marginalised and vulnerable, people with disabilities and people from other protected groups, when developing advice to Ministers.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy, what steps they are taking to develop a more strategic approach to partnering with and supporting human rights defenders globally; and, in particular, women human rights defenders.

The UK strongly supports Human Rights Defenders worldwide to enable them to carry out their work safely and without fear. We are concerned about eroding respect for human rights, including targeted discrimination of women and activists and Women Human Rights Defenders online and offline. In 2019 I, as the Minister of State responsible for Human Rights, launched the document 'UK support for Human Rights Defenders' which was drawn up with significant and important input from relevant stakeholders, including Amnesty International, and which sets out how the UK Government engages with Human Rights Defenders to advance the human rights agenda globally.

Furthermore, the UK National Action Plan for Women, Peace and Security sets out how the UK will work on tackling the obstacles to women's leadership and meaningful political participation such as lack of an enabling environment for women's rights organisations and women human rights defenders. Following the publication of the Integrated Review, the UK remains strongly committed to this agenda and will continue to support and work in partnership with Human Rights Defenders to promote open societies. The Review also commits the UK to work with women's rights organisations to tackle the discrimination, violence and inequality that hold women back. We will reflect these commitments in the various strands of strategic planning which will flow from the Integrated Review. The FCDO also monitors repression of HRDs in its annual Human Rights and Democracy Report, the most recent of which was published earlier this month. That report paid tribute to the courageous work of HRDs and listed support for them as a UK international policy priority.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
5th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to consult with civil society on the development of their plans for supporting, at an international level, (1) open societies, (2) media freedom, (3) anti-corruption efforts, (4) human rights and the rule of law.

The FCDO values civil society organisations (CSOs) as important policy and delivery partners at the forefront of delivering UK objectives. We have an ongoing policy dialogue with CSOs on open societies, and are committed to working in partnership with a diverse range of organisations across the whole of the UK and southern-based CSOs, both large and small. Civil Society plays a critical role in defending media freedom. In addition to regular consultations with CSOs, for example around the G7, we work closely with the 17 CSOs in the Consultative Network of the Media Freedom Coalition.

On anti-corruption issues we regularly engage with CSOs, for example holding civil society roundtables on our new anti-corruption sanctions regime and participating with colleagues from the Joint Anti-Corruption Unit in regular engagement with the UK Anti-Corruption Coalition. Ministers meet regularly with the Advisory Group on Human Rights, a group of 14 experts including civil society representatives. Open Societies were discussed at the most recent meeting. CSOs are also strongly represented in the UK war crimes network. Modern slavery is another important part of our human rights work. We are supporting the Home Office to review the government's modern slavery strategy and will engage external partners, including CSOs.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
30th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many people will be working on the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative agenda by October.

Information on roles undertaken by employees in the delegated grades (i.e. below Director level) is not held centrally.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
30th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what actions they expect to complete in pursuit of (1) the Women, Peace and Security agenda, and (2) the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative, by the end of the present National Action Plan pursuant to UN Security Council Resolution 1325 in 2022.

The UK continues to champion the ethos of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (WPS) through our National Action Plan (NAP) on WPS (2018-2022). We will continue to focus our work to ensure better protection and empowerment of women in conflict situations overseas through our diplomatic, development and defence engagements alongside our bilateral and multilateral partners. We will work to achieve this through the seven Strategic Outcomes of the NAP. For example, we remain committed to ensuring women have full, equal and meaningful participation in peacekeeping; providing £1.2m this financial year to the Elsie Initiative Fund to increase the number of uniformed women in peace operations. The UK will also continue to tackle gender-based violence, particularly violence against women and girls as the most prevalent form of gender-based violence.

The Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative will continue to deliver policy and programme interventions supporting its objectives of strengthening pathways to justice for all survivors of sexual violence in conflict, holding the perpetrators to account and enhancing support available to all survivors and children born of conflict-related sexual violence, including tackling the stigma they face.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
28th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether diplomatic posts will be able to apply for official development assistance funding for local projects this year.

The creation of the FCDO has brought together diplomacy and development into a single organisation.

On 21 April, the Foreign Secretary laid a Written Ministerial Statement in Parliament which outlined the allocation of FCDO ODA for 2021/22. At present, Officials are working through the implementation (and corresponding details) of these decisions with partners and suppliers.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
28th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will publish a list of the (1) organisations and projects that have had official development assistance cuts, and (2) official development assistance projects that will be funded for 2021.

FCDO Officials are continuing to work through the implementation of the budget changes set out in the Foreign Secretary's WMS, with partners and suppliers. Given we are in a one-year spending settlement, FCDO's 21/22 planned budget allocations will be published in our Annual Report later this year. We will also continue to publish our spend information by project on DevTracker as always (updated monthly).

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether programmes supporting women and girls will be disproportionately impacted by the aid cuts; and if so, what plans they have to mitigate that impact.

Promoting gender equality and advancing women and girls' rights around the world is a priority for the UK Government. Both the Integrated Review and recent G7 Leaders' Communique confirms this commitment.

The seismic impact of the pandemic on the UK economy has forced us to take the tough but necessary decision to temporarily reduce the overall amount we spend on Official Development Assistance (ODA). Despite this, the UK remains committed to advancing gender equality, as evidenced by co-hosting the Global Partnership for Education replenishment, a focus on gender at COP26 and co-leadership of a new global Action Coalition on Gender-Based Violence (GBV) as part of the Generation Equality Forum. The UK's G7 Presidency has prioritised action which places gender equality and girl's education at the centre of our COVID-19 response and recovery. We remain bound by the UK International Development Act (Gender Equality) 2014 to ensure gender equality remains at the heart of the UK's work on international development and in humanitarian crisis.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the number of jobs being put at risk due to the cuts in Official Development Assistance.

We have not made an assessment of the number of jobs at risk following the difficult decision to reduce aid spending temporarily to 0.5% of GNI. As the Foreign Secretary has said, our primary focus is on poverty reduction in developing countries and we are working closely with delivery partners to reprioritise the development portfolio to meet the priorities set out to the House on 26 November 2020. Delivery partners will consider how best to restructure their operations in order to deliver the reprioritised portfolio.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether a gendered assessment took place before the cuts to Official Development Assistance this year; and if so, (1) when this was carried out, and (2) how this was carried out.

During the 2021/22 ODA allocation process, the FCDO considered risks and impacts to inform advice to Ministers. An overarching Equalities Impact Assessment analysed impacts across bilateral country spend. The assessment was considered by Ministers before decisions were made.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the cuts to Official Development Assistance have fallen equally across the (1) multi-lateral projects, (2) Non-Governmental Organisations, and (3) bilateral projects; and if not, what was the rationale in assigning how the cuts were going to be applied?

FCDO Officials are continuing to work through the implementation of the budget changes set out in the Foreign Secretary's WMS, with partners and suppliers. Given we are in a one-year spending settlement, FCDO's 21/22 planned budget allocations will be published in our Annual Report later this year. We will also continue to publish our spend information by project on DevTracker as always (updated monthly).

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many officials are working on the Women, Peace and Security Agenda in (1) the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and (2) the Ministry of Defence.

Officials in the FDCO and MOD, centrally and across the global network, work collectively to deliver strategic outcomes as part of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda and wider work. Given the breadth of the WPS agenda and global focus, information on the number of officials working on this issue is not held centrally.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
26th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by the Minister of State (Minister for Asia) on 30 June 2020 (63339), what recommendations the strategic review of the British Council includes about its (1) geographical footprint, and (2) programme activity.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. The Minister will write directly to the Member with a response shortly.
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
26th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by the Minister of State (Minister for Asia) on 30 June 2020 (63339), whether they intend to publish the strategic review of the British Council; and if so, when.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. The Minister will write directly to the Member with a response shortly.
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to raise at the G7 summit the limited participation of women in the Afghan peace process; and what plans they have to increase the participation of women in this process and other global peace processes.

The UK is committed to promoting women's full, equal and meaningful participation in all aspects of peace and security. The UK is committed to making gender equality a cross-cutting theme in its G7 Presidency and plans to discuss Afghanistan, including the importance of an inclusive peace process, at the G7 Foreign and Development Ministers meeting. An inclusive peace settlement between Afghans is the only way of achieving lasting peace. The UK is supporting efforts to achieve this. Within Afghanistan, the UK provides technical advice to the Afghan Ministry of Peace, training for the Afghan negotiating team, and capacity building support to the Afghan women's network and civil society organisations. The UK's partnership with the Catholic Organization for Relief and Development Aid (CORDAID) provides mentoring to a diverse cadre of 30 female peacebuilders and promotes peace discussions across 15 provinces. At the UN, the UK is co-host of the Group of Friends of Women in Afghanistan, and recently hosted a high-level event on 19 March to discuss how the international community can more effectively ensure Afghan women's safety, and their meaningful participation at all levels of the peace process.

The UK National Action Plan on Women Peace and Security shows how the UK aims to increase women's meaningful participation in peace processes globally. The UK continues to support the International Civil Society Action Network's Protection Framework for women peacebuilders, to ensure women's safety is not a barrier to their participation. We will also continue to support the Women Mediators across the Commonwealth network, having provided over £2 million since 2018.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to raise awareness at the G7 summit of (1) the impact of the underrepresentation of women in politics on girls' education, and (2) the impact of the underrepresentation of women in peace processes and peace building on girls' education, in conflict zones.

Women's participation in public and political life yields benefits across society. The UK is committed to promoting women's full, equal, and meaningful participation and leadership in all decision-making structures, including peace and security. We will make gender equality a cross-cutting theme for our G7 Presidency. We are also using the G7 to promote our two ambitious global targets to get 40 million more girls in school, and 20 million more girls reading by age 10, over the next 5 years.

When women meaningfully participate in peace processes, the resulting agreement is almost two thirds less likely to fail. The UK is a world leader in Women, Peace and Security, supporting enhanced global stability and breaking down the barriers to education faced by children living in conflict.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
23rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they plan to make representations to other governments to encourage them to sign the international political declaration to avoid the use of explosive weapons in populated areas.

The political declaration can best protect civilians through the promotion of International Humanitarian Law and the sharing of best practice. The UK will continue to engage fully with the process and will take a view on endorsement as well as the merit of making representations to other governments once the declaration's final form is known.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
23rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the international political declaration to avoid the use of explosive weapons in populated areas; and whether they plan to endorse it.

The political declaration can best protect civilians through the promotion of International Humanitarian Law and the sharing of best practice. The UK will continue to engage fully with the process and will take a view on endorsement as well as the merit of making representations to other governments once the declaration's final form is known.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether particular support will be offered through Official Development Assistance spending to women in developing countries affected by climate change to help protect the environment; and what plans they have to address this issue at COP26.

The UK Government remains committed to helping developing countries tackle climate change. We are doubling our International Climate Finance (ICF) to £11.6 billion over the next five years, of which at least £3 billion will be invested to protect and restore nature and biodiversity. Climate change disproportionately affects women and girls, and gender equality is a required consideration for ICF, as for all Official Development Assistance.

The UK is committed to hosting an inclusive COP. As part of our COP26 Presidency, we are stepping up work to fulfil the UK's commitments under the Gender Action Plan agreed at COP25, including by implementing gender-responsive domestic climate policies.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the reduction in Official Development Assistance spending will affect funding for (1) climate change, (2) poverty eradication, (3) tackling disease, and (4) conflict; and whether these issues will be raised when the UK hosts (a) COP26, and (b) the G7 summit.

The Foreign Secretary has set out seven core priorities for the UK's aid budget in the overarching pursuit of poverty reduction: climate and biodiversity; Covid and global health security; girls' education; science and research; defending open societies and resolving conflict; humanitarian assistance; and promoting trade and economic growth. We are working through our internal business planning process which will allocate the ODA budget across these priorities and geographies. While final decisions on ODA allocations for 2021/22 have not yet been made, we will honour our commitment to spend £11.6 billion on climate change over the next 5 years.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the reduction in Official Development Assistance spending will affect funding for (1) family planning, or (2) sexual and reproductive health and rights; and if so, how.

The UK is proud to defend comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights, including family planning; these are fundamental to the empowerment of girls and women.

The Foreign Secretary has completed the cross-government review of how Official Development Assistance (ODA) will be allocated against the government's priorities for 2021. The aim is to ensure UK ODA is focused on strategic priorities, where it will have the maximum impact, enable greater coherence and deliver the most value for money. Officials are now working through the implications of these allocations. No decisions on individual sectoral budgets have been taken yet by Ministers.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
1st Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what gender policies they plan to take forward as part of the foreign and development track at the G7.

Gender Equality will be central to our G7 Presidency and will be reflected across multiple strands of G7 work. Within the Foreign and Development track, we aim to secure G7 agreement on ambitious new access and learning targets for girls' education, as well as G7 policy and financial commitments, including a successful replenishment of the Global Partnership for Education. The track will also seek to strengthen the G7's commitment to women's political and economic empowerment and to ending violence against women and girls.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
26th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether diplomatic posts overseas are able to apply to provide funding for (1) local charities and (2) NGOs; and whether there is a maximum time limit on any such funding.

FCDO has run competitive funding schemes through its UK Aid Match and UK Aid Direct programmes since 2013 and 2015 respectively that civil society organisations have been able to apply for. Future funding levels for these are dependent on the outcome of the current spending review process. Similarly, Diplomatic Posts overseas are also in the process of business planning and through that process will make decisions about whether to allocate funding to local charities or NGOs.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to fund local charities in (1) developing, and (2) conflict, countries.

The FCDO is committed to working in partnership with a diverse range of civil society organisations and recognises the unique role of in-country local organisations. A key aim of our funding for civil society is to support the capacity of local civil society organisations (in developing and conflict countries) so they can become strong, self-reliant and powerful development actors.

In addition to funding provided to local organisations through our country programmes, our 10-year partnership with Comic Relief focusses on building the capacity and sustainability of local charities in Ghana, Zambia and Malawi. Local charities based in country are also eligible for funding for project activities through UK Aid Direct.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 10 December 2020 (HL10766), whether the cross-Government process to review, appraise and finalise the UK's Official Development Assistance allocations has now concluded; and what plans they have to publish the findings of that review.

The Foreign Secretary has concluded the process and has set out the conclusion in Written Ministerial Statement (HCWS735) to the House today. https://questions-statements.parliament.uk/written-statements/detail/2021-01-26/hcws735

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 10 December 2020 (HL10811) and further to their cross-Government review into the allocation of UK Official Development Assistance, what proportion of the £821 million provided to the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund in Spending Review 2020, published on 25 November 2020, will be allocated (1) to the women, peace, and conflict agenda, and (2) to preventing sexual violence in conflict.

The Foreign Secretary is currently in the process of concluding the cross-Government review which will agree Official Development Assistance (ODA) allocations for all government departments. The process will drive coherence across the entire UK ODA budget and ensure the UK acts as a force for good across the globe. The Foreign Secretary will communicate the outcome shortly. Following this, the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund will seek cross-ministerial approval of its allocations for Financial Year 2021/22.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to replace the role of Special Envoy on Gender Equality; and, if so, when will that be announced.

Gender equality is a core part of the FCDO's work as a force for good in the world. The UK is committed to promoting every girl's right to 12 years of quality education, by working to accelerate progress towards getting marginalised girls into schools, staying there, and staying safe. Between 2015 and 2020, we supported 8.1 million girls gain access to a decent education. The Strategic Vision for Gender Equality reflects and responds to the UK Government's ambitions, and works alongside our National Action Plan (NAP) on Women, Peace and Security. We will update on the Envoy in due course.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
9th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to replace the role of Special Envoy on Girls Education; and, if so, when will that be announced.

Gender equality is a core part of the FCDO's work as a force for good in the world. The UK is committed to promoting every girl's right to 12 years of quality education, by working to accelerate progress towards getting marginalised girls into schools, staying there, and staying safe. Between 2015 and 2020, we supported 8.1 million girls gain access to a decent education. The Strategic Vision for Gender Equality reflects and responds to the UK Government's ambitions, and works alongside our National Action Plan (NAP) on Women, Peace and Security. We will update on the Envoy in due course.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the risk that the agreement reached on 9 October between the government of Iraq and the Kurdish Regional Government about the Sinjar district poses to Yezidi people; and what action they are taking as a result.

The UK continues to closely monitor the recent agreement between the Government of Iraq (GoI) and Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) over governance sharing in Sinjar. We are committed to supporting the rights of the Yazidi community and other minority groups in Iraq. HMA Baghdad has recently discussed this matter with GoI and KRG leadership, as well as senior representatives of the Yazidi community, urging for representation of minority groups. The UK's Minister for the Middle East and Minister for the Armed Forces travelled to Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region of Iraq on 30 November, and discussed security cooperation with GoI and KRG leadership. The UK will continue to engage closely with all relevant parties in order to support the rights of the Yazidi community and other minority groups through this agreement.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the agreement reached on 9 October between the government of Iraq and the Kurdish Regional Government about the Sinjar district and, in particular, of the views of the local community about that agreement.

The UK continues to closely monitor the recent agreement between the Government of Iraq (GoI) and Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) over governance sharing in Sinjar. We are committed to supporting the rights of the Yazidi community and other minority groups in Iraq. HMA Baghdad has recently discussed this matter with GoI and KRG leadership, as well as senior representatives of the Yazidi community, urging for representation of minority groups. The UK's Minister for the Middle East and Minister for the Armed Forces travelled to Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region of Iraq on 30 November, and discussed security cooperation with GoI and KRG leadership. The UK will continue to engage closely with all relevant parties in order to support the rights of the Yazidi community and other minority groups through this agreement.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
27th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what proportion of the £821 million provided to the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund in Spending Review 2020, published on 25 November, will be allocated (1) to the women, peace, and conflict agenda, and (2) to preventing sexual violence in conflict.

To ensure coherence and maximum value for money from the UK's ODA spending, the Foreign Secretary will run a short cross-government process to review all discretionary allocations for the next financial year. This is planned to conclude before Christmas.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office is retaining the Department for International Development's commitment to maintaining poverty reduction as the primary objective of UK spending.

The Government will prioritise the bottom billion, the very poorest around the world, as part of our core mission. This is in our national interest and it will project the UK as a force for good in the world. For example, during the coronavirus pandemic, the UK has provided £15 million to UNICEF to protect vulnerable children, and a further £5 million to the Education Cannot Wait fund, supporting emergency education in conflict countries. Furthermore, the UK has allocated £119 million of aid to provide relief to over 6 million people and help prevent famine in countries hit by conflict and COVID-19.

2nd Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office will continue to target UK aid to the poorest countries and people.

Reducing poverty will be at the beating heart of the FCDO. The Foreign Secretary has appointed Nick Dyer as the first ever envoy on famine prevention and humanitarian affairs, and we have allocated a new £119 million package to look at the threat of the coronavirus and of famine more generally across the bottom billion.

2nd Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office is retaining the Department for International Development's (1) commitment to 'leave no one behind', and (2) strategies on gender and disability.

Leaving no-one behind is an essential element of the mission of the FCDO, alongside building shared global prosperity, eradicating extreme poverty, tackling climate change, strengthening the international rule of law and global security, and promoting universal human rights and free, open societies.

As part of the creation of FCDO as a new Department we are refreshing and building on existing strategies, as well as developing new approaches where appropriate. We do not see the core ambitions of the Strategic Vision for Gender Equality nor the Disability Inclusion Strategy changing. Advancing gender equality and women's and girls' rights are a core part of this Government's mission, including fulfilling every girl's right to 12 years of quality education. The advancement of the inclusion of persons with disabilities is as important now as when the strategy was published in 2018 - the new department will strive to ensure the aims of the strategy are realised. The Government remains steadfast in its commitment to these agendas.

27th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they plan to appoint another Special Envoy for Gender Equality; and, if so, when any such appointment will be announced.

Gender equality is a core part of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office's work as a force for good in the world. Promoting gender equality and advancing women and girls' rights on the international stage remains a priority for the UK Government including fulfilling every girl's right to 12 years of quality education.

I was appointed by the Prime Minister as the UK Special Envoy for Girls' Education in March 2020. I am committed, in my role, to promoting every girl’s right to attend and stay in school, and to receive a quality education, I am driving the issue forward internationally, pushing for increased coordination and investment in girls education, and for greater global ambition. The UK Government continues to build on our Strategic Vision for Gender Equality alongside our National Action Plan (NAP) on Women Peace and Security.

21st Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have made to the International Finance Corporation concerning the farm animal welfare standards of livestock projects that it funds.

The UK Government monitors the International Finance Corporation (IFC)'s application of the Social and Environmental Performance Standards which apply to all IFC projects. Performance Standard 6 covers Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Management of Living Natural Resources. This includes guidance on animal welfare in livestock projects. For each proposed project, IFC publicly discloses summary project information, environmental and social implications, and expected development impact. Where projects present particular environmental and social risks, IFC sets out a time-limited Action Plan that the project must deliver. The UK Government uses its seat on the IFC Board to ensure that these procedures are followed.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on 25 November.

The UK is proud to be a world leader on efforts to prevent Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) as part of our broader ambitions on gender equality. We strongly support the UN International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and plan to mark it with events across our networks, including engaging with international partners and women's rights organisations in our role as co-leader of the Generation Equality Action Coalition on Gender-based Violence. Details of the events will be publicised in due course.

14th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of recent attacks in northern Iraq and Syria by Turkish warplanes.

The British Ambassador in Ankara has raised the issue of Turkish military actions in northern Iraq with the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including the reports of civilian casualties. British diplomats have also discussed this with the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. We continue to urge dialogue and cooperation between Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region, and Turkey to combat terrorism, ensure regional security and protect civilians.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
14th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports that airstrikes by Turkish warplanes in Northern Iraq have hit internally displaced people and refugee camps in Sinjar; and what steps, if any, they intend to take in response to such reports.

The British Ambassador in Ankara has raised the issue of Turkish military actions in northern Iraq with the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including the reports of civilian casualties. British diplomats have also discussed this with the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. We continue to urge dialogue and cooperation between Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region, and Turkey to combat terrorism, ensure regional security and protect civilians.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
14th Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of statements by the government of Turkey that they have 40 “military points” in the Kurdistan region of Iraq; and what steps, if any, they intend to take in response to this.

The British Ambassador in Ankara has raised the issue of Turkish military actions in northern Iraq with the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including the reports of civilian casualties. British diplomats have also discussed this with the Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government. We continue to urge dialogue and cooperation between Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region, and Turkey to combat terrorism, ensure regional security and protect civilians.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that there is sufficient civil society consultation and involvement in the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

The Government paused its Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy in April due to the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We have formally recommenced the Review, building on the work done since February.

Our aim continues to be for an ambitious and bold Integrated Review that is guided by the UK's foreign policy and national security objectives.

We will be engaging with Parliament, the Devolved Administrations, external experts and wider stakeholders with an interest in our nation's security and prosperity. This includes our allies and partners, building on our ongoing dialogue on COVID-19 response and recovery.

The Government will conduct targeted engagement that will bring crucial external voices and expertise to bear in defining our ambition for the UK's role in the world and setting the country on the best possible trajectory to recovery from COVID-19.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how civil society views will be taken into account in the outcome of the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

The Government paused its Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy in April due to the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We have formally recommenced the Review, building on the work done since February.

Our aim continues to be for an ambitious and bold Integrated Review that is guided by the UK's foreign policy and national security objectives.

We will be engaging with Parliament, the Devolved Administrations, external experts and wider stakeholders with an interest in our nation's security and prosperity. This includes our allies and partners, building on our ongoing dialogue on COVID-19 response and recovery.

The Government will conduct targeted engagement that will bring crucial external voices and expertise to bear in defining our ambition for the UK's role in the world and setting the country on the best possible trajectory to recovery from COVID-19.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they will ensure that gender equality is taken into account in the outputs and policies of the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

The UK remains fully committed to advancing gender equality and women's rights, including every girl's right to 12 years of quality education. The UK International Development (Gender Equality) Act makes consideration of gender equality in all UK Official Development Assistance (ODA) a legal requirement.

The Government paused its Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy in April due to the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We have formally recommenced the Review, building on the work done since February, and it is expected to conclude later in the year. Both the Review and the merger of Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Department for International Development are evidence of the Prime Minister's commitment to a unified British foreign policy that will maximise our influence around the world, including on gender equality and women's empowerment. Our aim continues to be for an ambitious and bold Integrated Review that is guided by the UK's foreign policy, national security and development objectives.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government which work streams were identified for the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy before it was paused.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, aligned with the CSR, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to commemorate the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict on 19 June.

The UK plans to mark the sixth annual International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict by announcing the launch of the draft Murad Code of Conduct for documenting conflict related sexual violence for global consultations. The Code will uphold international standards and best practice by donors, international organisations, and civil society when documenting conflict-related sexual violence, and prevent the re-traumatisation of survivors. As the Prime Minister's Special Representative on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict I will also attend a UN virtual event hosted by the Special Representative of the Secretary General on Sexual Violence in Conflict to raise awareness of the impacts of the global COVID-19 pandemic on survivors of conflict-related sexual violence.

The UK remains at the forefront of the global efforts to tackle conflict-related sexual violence through our Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative. We are committed to strengthening justice and accountability for all survivors of conflict-related sexual violence.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to reschedule the International Conference on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict that was postponed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the Prime Minister's Special Representative on Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict I issued a statement on 14 April that the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative (PSVI) International Conference, Time for Justice: Putting Survivors First had been postponed in light of the international COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure that the event had the inclusive, global impact which the issue demands. This was a difficult decision to make. The Foreign Secretary and I will revisit dates when the international situation allows.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to mark the 20th Anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325.

2020 is an important year for the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda. This government is committed to marking the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, calling for renewed commitment by the international community to implement all of the WPS UN Security Council resolutions. Our priorities for this year are to promote women's meaningful inclusion in peace processes; and increase support and protection for women resolving conflict, countering violent extremism and building peace at the grassroots level. As COVID-19 impacts on communities, the knowledge, perspectives and skills that these women bring are even more important.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to inform civil society about how to participate in the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy as soon as work on it recommences.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, aligned with the CSR, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether work streams have already been identified for the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy and, if so, what are they.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, aligned with the CSR, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they think that work will recommence on the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy and, if undecided, whether they will announce when this recommences.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, aligned with the CSR, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of COVID-19 on the situation in Afghanistan.

We are deeply concerned about the spread of COVID-19 in Afghanistan. The pandemic and its secondary effects will create significant challenges for Afghanistan as it aims to overcome the legacy of over 40 years of conflict and become a more stable and prosperous state. We remain committed to working closely with the Afghan Government to improve the country's security, development and governance and will continue to provide diplomatic support to help push for a sustainable and inclusive peace process.

On the immediate response to COVID-19 in Afghanistan, the UK contributes significantly to the Afghanistan Humanitarian Fund - providing 75% of its funding - which has allocated $1.5 million to the World Health Organisation to implement their response plan and $27m towards the multi-sector response in country. We will continue to assess the need for further assistance as the situation develops.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
29th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they will ensure that there is adequate civil society consultation and involvement in the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
29th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how civil society views will be included in the outcome of the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
29th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether civil society in the focus countries of the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security 2018–22 will be consulted as part of the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
29th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Ministry of Defence and the Department for International Development will incorporate equality into the upcoming Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
29th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether (1) the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, (2) the Ministry of Defence and (3) the Department for International Development, will ensure that all equalities, including gender equality, are included in the outputs and policy of the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy; and if so, how.

Following the Chancellor's announcement that the Comprehensive Spending Review is being delayed, the Integrated Review has been paused given the pressing need to focus on COVID-19. We will return to the Integrated Review when appropriate to do so, ensuring that we engage with all relevant stakeholders.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
6th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when the Comprehensive Spending Review will conclude.

As the Chancellor confirmed in July, the 2020 Comprehensive Spending Review will be published in the Autumn. Further details will be set out in due course.

16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how long Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs takes to process inheritance tax account forms and return IHT421 forms as a receipt of tax paid; and whether there is a service-level agreement for this.

HMRC’s published target for processing the IHT400 account form (establishing tax liability) and, if appropriate, issuing the IHT421 to HM Courts and Tribunal Service is 80% within 15 days. In 2018/19 HMRC met this target, and they continue to do so. HMRC regularly monitor their cases so that the small number that fall outside this target are processed.

In light of the impact of Covid-19, HMRC are monitoring demand and resource across all workloads and there may be fluctuations in performance over the coming months.

16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how long Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs takes to refund overpaid inheritance tax; and whether there is a service-level agreement for such refunds.

There are different types of work that will lead to repayments of overpaid tax. However, HMRC do not record this information specifically for Inheritance Tax.

10th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had, if any, with the government of India, regarding the introduction of the Youth Mobility Scheme between that country and the UK.

Her Majesty’s Government maintains regular dialogue with the Government of India on the introduction of the Youth Mobility Scheme (branded the India Young Professionals Scheme), a joint commitment included in the Migration and Mobility Partnership agreement signed between the UK and India on 4 May 2021. In addition, the agreement established an official channel for dialogue on all matters concerning implementation of the partnership agreement, the Joint Working Group.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many cyclists who knocked over pedestrians in London in each of the last three years were fined.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) and other outcomes for motoring offences on an annual basis as part of the ‘Police Powers and Procedures’ statistical publication. However, information on the type of vehicle is not available. The most recent data for FPNs issued for motoring offences covers the years 2011-2020, are available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-powers-and-procedures-other-pace-powers-england-and-wales-year-ending-31-march-2021

The Department for Transport publish statistics on road casualties, including accidents involving cyclists, these data can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/reported-road-casualties-great-britain-annual-report-2020

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many cyclists were (1) apprehended, and (2) fined, for riding on pavements in London for each of the last three years.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) and other outcomes for motoring offences on an annual basis as part of the ‘Police Powers and Procedures’ statistical publication. However, information on the type of vehicle is not available. The most recent data for FPNs issued for motoring offences covers the years 2011-2020, are available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-powers-and-procedures-other-pace-powers-england-and-wales-year-ending-31-march-2021

The Department for Transport publish statistics on road casualties, including accidents involving cyclists, these data can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/reported-road-casualties-great-britain-annual-report-2020

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many cyclists were (1) apprehended, and (2) fined, for going through red traffic lights in London for each of the last three years.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) and other outcomes for motoring offences on an annual basis as part of the ‘Police Powers and Procedures’ statistical publication. However, information on the type of vehicle is not available. The most recent data for FPNs issued for motoring offences covers the years 2011-2020, are available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-powers-and-procedures-other-pace-powers-england-and-wales-year-ending-31-march-2021

The Department for Transport publish statistics on road casualties, including accidents involving cyclists, these data can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/reported-road-casualties-great-britain-annual-report-2020

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
24th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are making special provision for visas to the UK for Afghan doctors and nurses who wish to be evacuated, to help address the NHS staffing gap in the UK.

The Government responded swiftly to the fast-moving and challenging events in Afghanistan, including supporting the largest and fastest evacuation in recent history. We can be proud as a country we helped over 15,000 people to safety from Afghanistan in August 2021 and we continue to do all we can to enable those who are eligible to relocate to the UK through the Afghan Relocation and Assistance Policy and Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme.

The Department of Health and Social Care is also working with DWP to develop pathways to support Afghans who are already in the UK to access roles in the health and social care sector.

On the issue of NHS staffing gaps, the Government has done a number of things to ensure the NHS has suitable resources. We are on schedule to deliver 50,000 more nurses by the end of this Parliament to deliver a sustainable long term workforce supply. With the National Health Service and Health Education England, we have established a programme to improve retention and support return to practice, invest in and diversify training and increase ethical and sustainable international recruitment. We have also made £2 billion made available in 2021/22 and a further £8 billion from 2022 to 2025 to increase activity, tackle backlogs in elective care and reduce waiting times for patients.

In August 2020, the Government launched the Health and Care Visa which provides for fast-track entry, reduced application fees and dedicated support. Health and Care Visa applicants are also exempt from paying the Immigration Health Surcharge. These benefits also extend to Health and Care Visa applicants dependents.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have made regarding negotiating bilateral agreements for the Youth Mobility Scheme Visa to (1) any EU member state, and (2) any other countries, who are not already members of the scheme.

We remain open to negotiating Youth Mobility Scheme (YMS) arrangements with other countries and territories including the EU or nations within it. However, as each YMS is subject to a bilateral, reciprocal agreement which also provides benefit to UK nationals with the detail negotiated and agreed between the relevant parties, we are unable to disclose the status of negotiations as they occur. Further details of additional YMS agreements will be announced once they are concluded.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what representations they have received regarding negotiating bilateral arrangements for the Youth Mobility Scheme Visa from (1) any EU member state, and (2) any other countries, who are not already covered by the scheme.

We remain open to negotiating Youth Mobility Scheme (YMS) arrangements with other countries and territories including the EU or nations within it. However, as each YMS is subject to a bilateral, reciprocal agreement which also provides benefit to UK nationals with the detail negotiated and agreed between the relevant parties, we are unable to disclose the status of negotiations as they occur. Further details of additional YMS agreements will be announced once they are concluded.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have a cap on the total number of visas they will allocate through the Youth Mobility Scheme.

Quotas are set annually in line with Memoranda of Understanding negotiated with individual countries and territories, and in non-pandemic times linked to the number of UK nationals travelling overseas to take advantage of the reciprocal arrangements. The allocations for each year are published in the Immigration Rules.

There is no overall cap on the number of visas available on the scheme as a whole, and we remain open to negotiating new agreements with other countries and territories.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
16th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the remarks by Baroness Williams of Trafford on 8 November (HL Deb, col 1441), which two new countries will be added to the Youth Mobility Scheme Visa next year; and on what date.

The Youth Mobility Scheme visa route will be open to 18-30 year olds from Iceland from 1 January 2021. In line with the Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement signed on 4 May 2021 between the UK and the Government of India, the scheme will be opening to Indian Young Professionals aged 18-30. Further details of implementation arrangements will be provided in due course.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
4th Nov 2021
PKK
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the ruling by Belgium's Court of Cassation that the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) is not a terrorist organisation; and what plans they have, if any, to remove the PKK from their register of terrorist organisations.

It is Government policy not to comment on whether a group is under consideration for proscription or deproscription.

Partiya Karkeren Kurdistani (PKK) has been proscribed as a terrorist organisation in the UK since 2001. It is listed internationally, including by the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

The Terrorism Act 2000 allows the Home Secretary to proscribe a group, if she has a reasonable belief that the group is currently concerned in terrorism, and it must be a proportionate action to take. It is this statutory test which the Government applies when considering whether to proscribe an organisation or maintain an extant listing.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they will announce details of the Afghan Citizen’s Resettlement Scheme; and whether there will be any special provisions for women.

The Government has worked at pace to develop and launch the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme (ACRS), which will provide a safe and legal route for up to 20,000 Afghans in the region over the coming years, with 5,000 in the first year –one of the most generous schemes in British history.

On Monday 13 September the Government published a policy statement which set out further details on the policy and operation of the ACRS, and the package of integration support that will be offered to those arriving through the Scheme.

This statement confirmed that the ACRS will provide those put at risk by recent events in Afghanistan with a route to safety. This will include prioritising vulnerable people such women and girls, and members of minority groups at risk (including ethnic and religious minorities and LGBT+).

Further details on the scheme are published on the ACRS webpage: Afghan citizens’ resettlement scheme - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Afghan refugees who have recently arrived in the UK will be given mental health support.

The safety and wellbeing of Afghan refugees is of the utmost importance and we will work closely with accommodation providers and other partners to prioritise their safety and wellbeing. We are providing £3 million to ensure Afghan refugees receive the healthcare they need. This includes access to prescriptions, wound care and dressings, maternity care, mental health support, and screening for infectious diseases. We will also offer the protection of a COVID-19 vaccination as they settle and rebuild.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to work with (1) charities, and (2) local communities, to support refugees from Afghanistan; and what steps they are taking to (a) encourage, and (b) coordinate, charitable donations in support of this cause.

Under Operation Warm Welcome, we are taking a cross-government approach to ensuring Afghans arriving in the UK are able to rebuild their lives, find work, pursue education and integrate with their local communities.

The challenge of integrating such a large number of people at pace and supporting them to rebuild their lives in safety cannot be met by central and local government alone. We will be actively working with the private, voluntary and community sectors to harness a whole of society effort to address this challenge.

As part of this, we are creating a portal where people, organisations and businesses can register offers of support. This could include volunteering, offers of employment or to provide professional skills pro bono, including helping those arriving deal with trauma, or offering donations of mobile phones, mobile credit or data, laptops, access to training, clothes and toys. This will complement the Afghanistan housing portal which has been set up to collect offers of additional housing support.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Sep 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to help recently arrived Afghan refugees culturally acclimatise and assimilate into the British population.

All those brought to the UK under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) and the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme (ACRS) will have the right to work, access to education and healthcare and be able to apply for public funds. They will also receive comprehensive integration support as they start their new lives in the UK. The support provided for them will be similar to the commitments in the Syrian Resettlement Programme, with a complete package covering health, education and English Language support costs, and including cultural orientation to the UK.

We will be actively working with the private, voluntary and community sectors to harness a whole-of-society effort to address this challenge.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the UK's departure from the EU on au pairs; and whether au pairs who are EU citizens will still be able to work in the UK for one year.

As has been the case since 2008, the UK’s points-based immigration system will not offer a dedicated route for au pairs.

Those who wish to employ an au pair can either look to offer a package which makes it attractive to those arriving in the UK with general rights to work, such as our Youth Mobility Schemes, or use the wide range of childcare options in the UK relied upon by most families.

EU citizens who arrived prior to 31 December 2020, including au pairs, are eligible to apply for status under this government’s EU Settlement Scheme which grants a general right to work in the UK.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the role of au pair schemes (1) in creating ties with young people from EU countries, (2) in promoting UK values to au pairs arriving in the UK, and (3) in providing affordable childcare.

As has been the case since 2008, the UK’s points-based immigration system will not offer a dedicated route for au pairs.

There are other immigration routes which will exist for people who may wish to take up these roles, such as those on the Youth Mobility Scheme (YMS). The YMS results in around 20,000 young people from around the world, with capacity for more, to experience life in the UK. Each YMS is based on a reciprocal agreement giving benefits to UK Citizens as well.

Immigration cannot be seen as the sole solution to providing cheaper childcare, there are a wide-range of childcare options available in the UK which are relied upon by most families.

2nd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they plan to issue guidance to local councils regarding the recommencement of birth registrations; and whether all registry offices in England will reopen at the same time.

The local registration service in England has been advised that birth registrations can recommence where these can be safely delivered in line with Public Health and local authority guidelines. It will be for individual local authorities to determine when it is safe for them to open.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
2nd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the rule that a baby’s birth must be registered within 42 days has been relaxed due to the closure of registry offices to register births caused by COVID-19.

The requirement for births to be registered within 42-days of the date of birth is not currently being enforced.

Baroness Williams of Trafford
Minister of State (Home Office)
22nd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many military personnel are on placements in (1) international non-governmental organisations, (2) civilian organisations, and (3) academic institutions.

The information requested is not held centrally and to obtain it would incur a disproportionate cost.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether (1) foreign and commonwealth serving military personnel, and (2) foreign and commonwealth veterans, have a special point of contact in the Ministry of Defence.

All serving personnel, regardless of their nationality, have access to a comprehensive system of advice and support from their Chain of Command, welfare staff and Padres. If the issue cannot be resolved at that level, it may be referred to the relevant Ministry of Defence policy owner, and where specialist advice or support is required, individuals will be sign posted to the appropriate organisations.

During transition from and after leaving the service, the Defence Transition Service (DTS) delivers a full range of transition support for individuals, as a service leaver or family member, working directly with the service leaver to provide tailored information and guidance. DTS will facilitate access to the support they need, whether that be from other Government departments, local authorities, the NHS or trusted charities. The Veterans UK Welfare Service provide support to all veterans both overseas and in the UK, regardless of nationality. This includes helping them to access the relevant information and advice they need about their individual circumstances.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
21st Jan 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they communicate with, and understand the needs of, the spouses and families of military personnel to enable them to offer appropriate support.

The Government maintains regular communication with the three single Services, the Armed Forces Families Federations, and Service Charities. These organisations represent and promote the needs of families to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and central Government by engaging in cross-sector fora, under the agreed principles of the Armed Forces Covenant.

The views of partners, spouses, and families of military personnel are gathered on an annual basis through the Families Continuous Attitudes Survey. The results of this survey influence policy making across Government. The MOD is also committed to capturing the opinions of young people, establishing a youth voice working group and hosting local youth fora. Young people attend and present on issues affecting them at senior Board meetings as well as being represented on the Youth Parliament British Forces Overseas.

The single Services ensure that families receive timely information via their HiVE service and provide a wide range of guidance and support to personnel, their families, veterans, and reservists. This is complimented by the British Forces Broadcasting Service, which regularly holds interviews with key individuals on subjects of interest to families.

The Secretary of State for Defence publishes an annual Armed Forces Covenant Report which includes a chapter on the support provided to families across key areas including partner employment, healthcare, children’s education, wellbeing and housing. These reports include the Families Federations’ unedited observations of the Government’s progress in delivering its commitments under the Covenant and which inform future priorities.

An independent review into the needs of Service families ‘Living in Our Shoes’ was commissioned by the MOD in 2019 and published in June 2020. Alongside other research, its findings and recommendations are informing the refresh of the UK Armed Forces Families Strategy which the MOD expects to publish later this year. The Strategy will be supported by an Action Plan outlining targeted measures to improve outcomes for families over the course of the next two years.

During the Covid-19 pandemic it has never been more important to capture the needs of families and to make sure they feel understood and listened to. The HiVE services have played a critical role in getting the latest information to families. Over the course of the pandemic Chief of Defence People has twice written to families to thank them for their support and provide guidance and support on a range of issues including financial resilience, support for partners and spouses’ careers, and access to allowances.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
5th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to advocate for an implementation mechanism to give greater meaning and effect to the Draft Political Declaration on Strengthening the Protection of Civilians from Humanitarian Harm arising from the use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas.

The UK will take a view on the merits of an implementation mechanism for the Political Declaration on the Protection of Civilians in Urban Warfare once its final form is known.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
24th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have made any contribution to the Draft Political Declaration on Strengthening the Protection of Civilians from Humanitarian Harm arising from the use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas; and, if so, which department has made this contribution.

The Ministry of Defence and Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office are at the forefront of international discussions on the political declaration. The declaration remains in draft and we await further developments before we can assess any potential impact or implementation requirements. The use of explosive weapons in populated areas is, however, governed by International Humanitarian Law (IHL), which the UK complies fully with.

The UK will continue to take an active role in discussions to ensure that the protection of civilians is appropriately balanced with the need for responsible states to retain operational flexibility.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
24th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the likely impact of the Draft Political Declaration on Strengthening the Protection of Civilians from Humanitarian Harm arising from the use of Explosive Weapons in Populated Areas on (1) targeting of civilians, and (2) related reduction in civilian casualties.

The Ministry of Defence and Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office are at the forefront of international discussions on the political declaration. The declaration remains in draft and we await further developments before we can assess any potential impact or implementation requirements. The use of explosive weapons in populated areas is, however, governed by International Humanitarian Law (IHL), which the UK complies fully with.

The UK will continue to take an active role in discussions to ensure that the protection of civilians is appropriately balanced with the need for responsible states to retain operational flexibility.

Baroness Goldie
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
10th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether parish councils are allowed to use the names and addresses as they appear on the electoral register to contact those living in the parish.

There are two versions of the electoral register – the edited or open register and the full register. The edited register is publicly available for anyone to use – including to contact listed electors. However, whilst parish councils are also entitled to a copy of the full register, they may only use it to establish whether any person is entitled to attend and participate in a meeting of, or take any action on behalf of, the parish or community.

10th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether parish councils can access the names and addresses of parishioners held by unitary and council councils, other than those already on the electoral register, so that parish councils can contact parishioners not on the electoral register.

As parish councils are not public authorities within the Data Protection Act 2018, principal authorities are prevented from sharing personal information with parish councils beyond that available on the electoral register.

21st Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the experience of families waiting for an inquest to take place; and what bereavement support they are providing to these individuals.

The Coroner Statistics 2021: England and Wales, published on 12 May 2022, indicate that, on average in 2021, the time between the report of a death to the coroner and the completion of an inquest increased to 31 weeks (up from 27 weeks in 2020), although almost a third of coroner areas completed inquests within 24 weeks. Figures are also published by coroner area: for the Isle of Wight coroner area, the average time for completion of an inquest was 56 weeks (from 40 weeks in 2020).

Coroner services are locally based and funded and administered by the relevant local authorities. The Government recognises that local authorities have experienced a number of pressures as a result of the pandemic. During 2021, coroners dealt with both the impacts of the early stages of the pandemic and the ongoing effect of Covid, including a second lockdown and continued social distancing measures which, in particular, affected the ability to hold jury and other large and complex inquests.

We have provided £6.15 billion in unringfenced grant funding to local authorities in England to support the cost of pandemic pressures which could include additional costs incurred in the administration of coroner services. Funding for local authorities in Wales is a devolved matter. The Chief Coroner has issued guidance to coroners on how their services can best recover from the pandemic, including engagement with local authorities on any additional resources required. He is also undertaking a tour of all coroner areas to engage with them on their post-pandemic recovery plans.

In addition, we included a package of measures in the Judicial Review and Courts Act 2022 to streamline coroners’ court processes and support the coronial system with post pandemic recovery plans.

The Government’s priority is to ensure that the bereaved remain at the heart of the coroner system. In January 2020, we published a revised Guide to Coroner Services for Bereaved People which provides support and information for the bereaved about what they should expect from coroners’ investigations and inquests, and includes information on sources of bereavement support. The Guide is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guide-to-coroner-services-and-coroner-investigations-a-short-guide.

Lord Bellamy
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
21st Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the average time it takes from death to holding an inquest, where necessary.

The Coroner Statistics 2021: England and Wales, published on 12 May 2022, indicate that, on average in 2021, the time between the report of a death to the coroner and the completion of an inquest increased to 31 weeks (up from 27 weeks in 2020), although almost a third of coroner areas completed inquests within 24 weeks. Figures are also published by coroner area: for the Isle of Wight coroner area, the average time for completion of an inquest was 56 weeks (from 40 weeks in 2020).

Coroner services are locally based and funded and administered by the relevant local authorities. The Government recognises that local authorities have experienced a number of pressures as a result of the pandemic. During 2021, coroners dealt with both the impacts of the early stages of the pandemic and the ongoing effect of Covid, including a second lockdown and continued social distancing measures which, in particular, affected the ability to hold jury and other large and complex inquests.

We have provided £6.15 billion in unringfenced grant funding to local authorities in England to support the cost of pandemic pressures which could include additional costs incurred in the administration of coroner services. Funding for local authorities in Wales is a devolved matter. The Chief Coroner has issued guidance to coroners on how their services can best recover from the pandemic, including engagement with local authorities on any additional resources required. He is also undertaking a tour of all coroner areas to engage with them on their post-pandemic recovery plans.

In addition, we included a package of measures in the Judicial Review and Courts Act 2022 to streamline coroners’ court processes and support the coronial system with post pandemic recovery plans.

The Government’s priority is to ensure that the bereaved remain at the heart of the coroner system. In January 2020, we published a revised Guide to Coroner Services for Bereaved People which provides support and information for the bereaved about what they should expect from coroners’ investigations and inquests, and includes information on sources of bereavement support. The Guide is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guide-to-coroner-services-and-coroner-investigations-a-short-guide.

Lord Bellamy
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
21st Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether there is a backlog for inquests in the Isle of Wight; and if so, what steps they are taking to clear that backlog.

The Coroner Statistics 2021: England and Wales, published on 12 May 2022, indicate that, on average in 2021, the time between the report of a death to the coroner and the completion of an inquest increased to 31 weeks (up from 27 weeks in 2020), although almost a third of coroner areas completed inquests within 24 weeks. Figures are also published by coroner area: for the Isle of Wight coroner area, the average time for completion of an inquest was 56 weeks (from 40 weeks in 2020).

Coroner services are locally based and funded and administered by the relevant local authorities. The Government recognises that local authorities have experienced a number of pressures as a result of the pandemic. During 2021, coroners dealt with both the impacts of the early stages of the pandemic and the ongoing effect of Covid, including a second lockdown and continued social distancing measures which, in particular, affected the ability to hold jury and other large and complex inquests.

We have provided £6.15 billion in unringfenced grant funding to local authorities in England to support the cost of pandemic pressures which could include additional costs incurred in the administration of coroner services. Funding for local authorities in Wales is a devolved matter. The Chief Coroner has issued guidance to coroners on how their services can best recover from the pandemic, including engagement with local authorities on any additional resources required. He is also undertaking a tour of all coroner areas to engage with them on their post-pandemic recovery plans.

In addition, we included a package of measures in the Judicial Review and Courts Act 2022 to streamline coroners’ court processes and support the coronial system with post pandemic recovery plans.

The Government’s priority is to ensure that the bereaved remain at the heart of the coroner system. In January 2020, we published a revised Guide to Coroner Services for Bereaved People which provides support and information for the bereaved about what they should expect from coroners’ investigations and inquests, and includes information on sources of bereavement support. The Guide is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guide-to-coroner-services-and-coroner-investigations-a-short-guide.

Lord Bellamy
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
21st Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether there is a backlog for holding inquests as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic; and if so, how this varies across the regions of the country.

The Coroner Statistics 2021: England and Wales, published on 12 May 2022, indicate that, on average in 2021, the time between the report of a death to the coroner and the completion of an inquest increased to 31 weeks (up from 27 weeks in 2020), although almost a third of coroner areas completed inquests within 24 weeks. Figures are also published by coroner area: for the Isle of Wight coroner area, the average time for completion of an inquest was 56 weeks (from 40 weeks in 2020).

Coroner services are locally based and funded and administered by the relevant local authorities. The Government recognises that local authorities have experienced a number of pressures as a result of the pandemic. During 2021, coroners dealt with both the impacts of the early stages of the pandemic and the ongoing effect of Covid, including a second lockdown and continued social distancing measures which, in particular, affected the ability to hold jury and other large and complex inquests.

We have provided £6.15 billion in unringfenced grant funding to local authorities in England to support the cost of pandemic pressures which could include additional costs incurred in the administration of coroner services. Funding for local authorities in Wales is a devolved matter. The Chief Coroner has issued guidance to coroners on how their services can best recover from the pandemic, including engagement with local authorities on any additional resources required. He is also undertaking a tour of all coroner areas to engage with them on their post-pandemic recovery plans.

In addition, we included a package of measures in the Judicial Review and Courts Act 2022 to streamline coroners’ court processes and support the coronial system with post pandemic recovery plans.

The Government’s priority is to ensure that the bereaved remain at the heart of the coroner system. In January 2020, we published a revised Guide to Coroner Services for Bereaved People which provides support and information for the bereaved about what they should expect from coroners’ investigations and inquests, and includes information on sources of bereavement support. The Guide is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guide-to-coroner-services-and-coroner-investigations-a-short-guide.

Lord Bellamy
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
24th Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the reliability of their data on whether women leaving prison have (1) safe, and (2) sustainable, accommodation.

Our vision is that no one who is subject to probation supervision is released from prison homeless.

Women on remand are supported to meet resettlement needs and prepare for release by Probation staff in prisons. We will supplement this support from Probation staff with access to specialist accommodation support for all women on remand or sentenced in custody by the summer of this year.

We currently provide a Community Accommodation Service (CAS3), which provides temporary accommodation for sentenced women at risk of homelessness upon release from prison, in five probation regions and aim to expand this to all regions across England and Wales.

In 2021, we introduced Housing Specialists in twenty prisons, including four women’s prisons, to support prisons and probation in their strategic response to reducing homelessness. We intend to increase these to 48 across England and Wales, including across the women’s estate.

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) launched their Accommodation for Ex-Offenders (AFEO) scheme in July 2021 to support offenders at risk of homelessness into private rental tenancies. Overall, this financial year, £13 million has been allocated to 87 schemes across 145 local authorities.

To ensure consistent and accurate data recording, HMPPS, in collaboration with the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities (DLUHC) and the Welsh Government, has recently updated the Accommodation Recording Guidance to ensure Probation regions have a clear and consistent understanding of the accommodation status definitions, and how to record accurately. The Guidance defines homelessness as where an individual is rough sleeping, squatting, residing in night shelters, emergency hostels or campsites. Individuals with other forms of temporary, short-term or otherwise unstable accommodation are encompassed by the ‘unsettled accommodation’ category in published statistics.

Accommodation circumstances for offenders are reported annually as official statistics. Data for the period 01 April 2021 to 31 March 2022 will be published in July 2022 in the Community Performance Annual report.

14th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the duty to refer under the Homelessness Reduction Act 2017, with respect to vulnerable women leaving prison.

This Government is committed to ending rough sleeping this Parliament and believes everyone deserves a roof over their head. Everyone leaving prison should have somewhere safe and secure to live; accommodation enables offenders to hold down a job and reduces the likelihood of them re-offending.

Work is being done across government between the Ministry of Justice, MHCLG and the Welsh Government, to address the barriers offenders face in securing suitable accommodation and we are aware of the specific complex needs of women prison leavers.

In preparation for the launch of the new unified probation service, MoJ have published a policy framework in support of the Homelessness Reduction Act (2017) Duty to Refer process, which will mandate the roles and responsibilities of both prison and probation staff in making effective referrals. The operation of the new policy framework will be monitored and reviewed on a quarterly basis with MHCLG and any adjustments to the process incorporated into future iterations of the policy framework.

To support the oversight of its COVID-19 response, HMPPS set up seven Homelessness Prevention Teams to help find accommodation for offenders upon release. These teams have been very successful in securing temporary accommodation outcomes, including short-term rented accommodation and building new local partnerships with local authorities and housing partners.  The HPTs continue to operate.

We are investing more than £20m in supporting prison leavers at risk of homelessness into temporary accommodation. Individuals released from prison will be provided up to 12 weeks of temporary accommodation and will be supported into long-term settled accommodation before the end of that 12-week period. Initially launching in five national probation regions, the service will support around 3,000 offenders in its first year and will be commencing this Summer. It will be in operation during the next financial year 2021-22, with a view to scaling up and rolling out nationally. The service will take account of the needs of women, including those with complex needs and accommodation provision will be dedicated to single gender usage as required.

We are also introducing and testing a new specialist housing advisor role in twenty prisons, including within the female estate. The new role will seek to strengthen links between prisons, through the gate teams and local authorities to improve accommodation outcomes for those at risk of homelessness. Subject to evaluation, the intention is to scale up and roll-out nationally across all resettlement prisons.

16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how long, on average, it takes to gain grant of probate following an application for probate.

Her Majesty’s Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) internal management information (which is not subject to the rigorous quality assurance processes of official statistics) has been used to show average times from receipt of an application to a grant being issued in February 2020.

Measure

Average Weeks to issued

Median to issue

Submission to issue for all grants issued in the month (including those stopped for queries or missing documentation)

7

3

From submission to issue for grants issued in the month that were not stopped.

4

3

These figures include applications made via the online service and use the receipt date of the digital application for recording the time of issue, rather than the time the necessary supporting documentation is sent to HMCTS in order to start processing the application. The data has been extracted from the HMCTS Reform Core Case Data system, which is a new system in active development, and may not be directly comparable with figures for earlier periods.

Probate users can telephone the national Courts and Tribunal Service Centres with queries relating to Probate applications. In the month of February 2020, calls were answered within 3 minutes on average.

Official statistics are not held or published on the average length of time to grant probate after the filing of an inheritance tax form.

16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether people can telephone a probate registry to find out how their application is progressing; and what is the average length of time for such telephone calls to be answered.

Her Majesty’s Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) internal management information (which is not subject to the rigorous quality assurance processes of official statistics) has been used to show average times from receipt of an application to a grant being issued in February 2020.

Measure

Average Weeks to issued

Median to issue

Submission to issue for all grants issued in the month (including those stopped for queries or missing documentation)

7

3

From submission to issue for grants issued in the month that were not stopped.

4

3

These figures include applications made via the online service and use the receipt date of the digital application for recording the time of issue, rather than the time the necessary supporting documentation is sent to HMCTS in order to start processing the application. The data has been extracted from the HMCTS Reform Core Case Data system, which is a new system in active development, and may not be directly comparable with figures for earlier periods.

Probate users can telephone the national Courts and Tribunal Service Centres with queries relating to Probate applications. In the month of February 2020, calls were answered within 3 minutes on average.

Official statistics are not held or published on the average length of time to grant probate after the filing of an inheritance tax form.

16th Mar 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how long, on average, it takes to be granted probate after filing inheritance tax forms with Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.

Her Majesty’s Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) internal management information (which is not subject to the rigorous quality assurance processes of official statistics) has been used to show average times from receipt of an application to a grant being issued in February 2020.

Measure

Average Weeks to issued

Median to issue

Submission to issue for all grants issued in the month (including those stopped for queries or missing documentation)

7

3

From submission to issue for grants issued in the month that were not stopped.

4

3

These figures include applications made via the online service and use the receipt date of the digital application for recording the time of issue, rather than the time the necessary supporting documentation is sent to HMCTS in order to start processing the application. The data has been extracted from the HMCTS Reform Core Case Data system, which is a new system in active development, and may not be directly comparable with figures for earlier periods.

Probate users can telephone the national Courts and Tribunal Service Centres with queries relating to Probate applications. In the month of February 2020, calls were answered within 3 minutes on average.

Official statistics are not held or published on the average length of time to grant probate after the filing of an inheritance tax form.