Chris Ruane Written Questions

Questions to All Government Departments tabled by Chris Ruane


Date Title Questioner
9 Sep 2019, 6:40 p.m. Electoral Register: Sales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what steps the Electoral Commission has taken to tackle the sale by local authorities of the details of electors who have opted out of the open electoral register.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The supply of copies of the full register is limited to particular individuals and organisations prescribed in law. The Commission provides comprehensive written guidance for Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) which covers the access and supply of the electoral registers. This guidance makes clear that it is the responsibility of the ERO to be satisfied that the individual or organisation making a request is entitled to receive the register before it is supplied.

9 Sep 2019, 6:40 p.m. Electoral Register: Sales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what records the Committee holds on the income that local authorities receive from the sale of electoral registers to the private sector.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The prescribed fees for the sale of electoral registers are set out in legislation. The Commission provides comprehensive written guidance for Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) which covers the supply of the registers on payment of the relevant prescribed fee. The Commission does not hold records in relation to the sale of electoral registers by EROs.

9 Sep 2019, 6:39 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what representations the Electoral Commission has received about monitoring and improving household canvasses from (a) hon. Members and (b) other bodies and individuals in each of the past four years.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

Since 2016, the Commission has received letters from three Members of Parliament making representations about the annual electoral registration canvass of households, two in 2016 and one in 2018. The issues highlighted relate to a lack of clarity for constituents: about the purpose of the Household Enquiry Form sent during the canvass; about the wording used on the HEF; and about the purpose of a fine for failing to provide information in response to the form.

The Commission regularly receives representations from a wide range of other bodies and individuals on electoral registration matters. The issues highlighted above have also been reflected in those representations.

The Commission continues to work closely with the Cabinet Office to ensure that improvements to the current household canvass process will increase the future accuracy and completeness of the electoral registers.

9 Sep 2019, 6:38 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, pursuant to the Answer of 3 March 2015 to Question 225166, on Electoral Register, if the Electoral Commission will conduct research on the comparative success of different methods of increasing levels of electoral registration.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Electoral Commission conducts voter registration campaigns in the lead up to all major polls, adopting leading industry techniques and best practice. It evaluates the success of its electoral registration, to ensure continuous improvement. This includes tracking research to assess public reception to the campaign. Digital technology increasingly allows for testing of campaign approaches during the campaign itself, to further improve effectiveness and value for money.

The Commission has developed effective partnerships with third party organisations, which enable it to extend the reach of its campaign messaging, particularly to known under-registered groups. It shares best practice with these partners and provides support and resources to other organisations running their own activities. It works particularly closely with local authorities, which have specific knowledge of under-registered groups in their areas.

9 Sep 2019, 5:34 p.m. Mental Health Services: Prisons Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment his Department has made of the effectiveness of meditation techniques in prisoners' (a) mental health and (b) other health care.

Answer (Ms Nadine Dorries)

In March 2017, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published a guideline on mental health of adults in contact with the criminal justice system (NG66). Meditation for promoting mental health and wellbeing was considered during the development of the guideline. However, the guideline committee considered the evidence insufficient to support any specific recommendations on meditation.

NICE also published a guideline on physical health of people in prison (NG57) in November 2016, which made recommendations on the promotion of prisoners’ health and wellbeing. Meditation was not considered during the development of this guideline.

9 Sep 2019, 5:13 p.m. Mental Health Services: Expenditure Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the mental health budget was in each of the last 30 years.

Answer (Ms Nadine Dorries)

The Department holds overall yearly National Health Service budget figures, but it is not broken down into funding for specific areas such as mental health.

The Department’s budget is not spent directly on mental health services. Since 2016/17, NHS England has collated information on mental health expenditure for clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and specialised commissioned services and published this information in the Five Year Forward View Dashboard that is available following link:

www.england.nhs.uk/publication/mental-health-five-year-forward-view-dashboard/

9 Sep 2019, 4:56 p.m. Children: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of the relative position of the UK in international comparator tables on the well-being of children.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 4:56 p.m. Children: Antisocial Behaviour Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the effect of low emotional intelligence on levels of childhood delinquency.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 4:56 p.m. Children: Mental Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the effect of levels of emotional intelligence on (i) behavioural, (ii) cognitive and (iii) biological and physical development.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 4:56 p.m. Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many teachers of personal, social and health education have specific accreditation in relation to that subject.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 4:56 p.m. Children: Mental Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment his Department has made of the promotion and teaching of emotional intelligence in (a) primary and (b) secondary schools.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 4:41 p.m. Health: Disadvantaged Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment his Department has made of potential links between income inequality and health inequalities.

Answer (Jo Churchill)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 4:35 p.m. Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what statistical indices have been used to measure levels of happiness and well-being in the UK in the last 30 years.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

9 Sep 2019, 3:02 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of people have received fixed penalty notices for failing to register on the electoral register in each local authority area since July 2014.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The Cabinet Office does not hold this information. The issuing of fixed penalty notices is at the discretion of individual Electoral Registration Officers, who hold this data. It should be noted that penalties exist for failing to respond to requests for information from EROs (such as not completing a Household Enquiry Form or an Invitation to Register) rather than for failing to register to vote.

9 Sep 2019, 2:22 p.m. Employment: Stress Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment the Health and Safety Executive has made of the effect of long-term trends in workplace stress on the mental and physical health of workers.

Answer (Mims Davies)

HSE does monitor year on year statistics of work-related stress, using data gathered via the Labour Force Survey.

The overall incidence rates have remained fairly stable over the last decade but have recently shown indications of an upward trend. This data is used as evidence to inform policy and strategy development. Within the statistics there are a series of sectors that have persistently higher than average rates of stress – education, health, local and central government.

HSE has targeted these sectors more specifically, and its involvement has led to the development of practical tools and guidance to help support employers and employees in taking action to prevent and reduce the incidence of work-related stress and resulting mental health issues of anxiety and depression.

9 Sep 2019, 2:05 p.m. Unemployment: Mental Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent assessment she has made of the effect of unemployment on a person's mental health.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The Department of Health and Social Care and the Department for Work and Pensions recognise the impact unemployment can have on an individual’s mental health. An independent review* of the scientific evidence on the relationship between work and health, commissioned by the Department for Work and Pensions, found strong evidence that unemployment is generally harmful to health and linked with poorer mental health, psychological distress, and psychiatric morbidity. Our jobcentre staff work in partnership with mental health providers and services to ensure individuals experiencing unemployment receive the necessary help they need to support them in their job search, work entry and job retention.

Notes: * Waddell G and Burton AK. (2006). Is work good for your health and well-being. London: TSO.

9 Sep 2019, 10:30 a.m. Data Protection Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the effect on the free flow of commercially valuable data between the UK and EU of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

Data flows are important to consumers and businesses, including start-ups, SMEs and large corporations, as the ability to collect, share and process personal data is crucial for the digital and wider economy. The free flow of personal data is an important underpinning feature of the UK’s and EU’s future relationship for both economic and security purposes. In no deal, it is in everyone’s interests that the exchange of personal data between EU Member States and the UK continues.

In no deal, given the degree of alignment between the UK and EU’s data protection regimes, the UK will transitionally recognise all EEA states, EU adequate third countries, EU and EEA institutions, and Gibraltar, as though they have been subject to an affirmative adequacy decision by the UK. This will allow personal data to continue to flow freely from the UK to the EU. The UK would keep all of these decisions under review.

UK and EU/EEA organisations should take steps immediately to mitigate the impact by implementing alternative transfer mechanisms to send personal data from the EU/EEA to the UK. Details of what alternative transfer mechanisms are available and how to make use of them are set out in guidance from the Information Commissioner’s Office and on GOV.UK.

9 Sep 2019, 10:21 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the compatibility of software used by local authorities for electoral registration and that used by (a) the Electoral Commission and (b) his own Department.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The Government has no plans to assess the compatibility of software used by local
authorities for electoral registration and that used by the Cabinet Office and Electoral
Commission.

When Individual Electoral Registration (IER) was introduced in 2014, the Cabinet Office
worked with the Electoral Management Systems (EMS) providers to ensure they were
compatible with the Government’s IER Digital Service. Compatibility with the IER Digital
Service means that Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) can manage registration data
through their EMS by downloading applications submitted through the Register to Vote
website, uploading applications to be verified with the Department of Work and Pensions,
and notifying other EROs about electors who have moved from their area.

We continue to work with the suppliers to ensure any changes to the IER Digital Service
retain compatibility with the EMSs. In addition, the Cabinet Office is also working closely
with EMS providers to ensure that all systems used by EROs are fully prepared to manage
the changes required as part of the reforms to the annual canvass.

The Government does not hold any information on the compatibility of software used by
the Electoral Commission with that used by local authorities.

9 Sep 2019, 9:31 a.m. Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of per head of population spending on contingency plans in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal in each (a) nation and (b) region of the UK.

Answer (Rishi Sunak)

This Government would prefer to leave with a deal and will work in an energetic and determined way to get that better deal.

But the Treasury stands ready to provide funding to prepare for leaving without a deal. That is why the Chancellor and I have made over £2bn available for no deal preparations this year (2019-20) since taking office. All parts of the UK have benefitted from this funding, with the Barnett formula being applied in the usual way.

Should the UK leave without a deal, the Treasury will consider the appropriate response. The Government and the Bank of England have fiscal and monetary policy tools available, and are ready to respond as appropriate to support the economy should the circumstances require.

The government has already guaranteed that UK organisations who get EU programme funding will continue to do so should the EU cease to fund these organisations after exit.

9 Sep 2019, 8:25 a.m. Electoral Register: Internet Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, how many electors have registered online since the introduction of online registration; and what steps the Electoral Commission is taking to encourage online registration.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Electoral Commission does not hold data on how many electors have registered online; these figures will be held by the UK Government, which manages the online registration service.

The Commission promotes voter registration ahead of specific electoral events through paid-for advertising campaigns. Directing people who are not registered to the government’s online registration page is the central call to action of this campaign activity.

9 Sep 2019, 8:23 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what recent advice the Electoral Commission gave to Electoral Registration Officers on (a) maximising the registration of home movers and (b) sending voter registration forms to all households.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Commission produces comprehensive written guidance for Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) which covers the annual canvass process, including the sending of household enquiry forms. The guidance also covers targeting home movers, and the Commission also provides tools and resources to help EROs with carrying out this work.

9 Sep 2019, 8:22 a.m. Electoral Register: Advertising Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, how much the Electoral Commission spent on Facebook targeted advertisements for the purpose of increasing electoral registration on National Voter Registration Day in each of the last four years.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

National Voter Registration Day was an initiative led by Bite the Ballot, which last took place in February 2016. As part of its activity to support the project, the Commission did not place any Facebook advertising.

9 Sep 2019, 8:21 a.m. Electoral Register: Advertising Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, how much the Commission has spent on direct advertising in the last three years to increase registration of (a) young people aged 18 to 25 and (b) members of the expatriate community.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

None. Direct advertising (or marketing) does not form part of the Commission’s approach to its work encouraging voter registration.

9 Sep 2019, 8:20 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what recent assessment the Electoral Commission has made of the potential benefits of using the (a) number and (b) proportion of UK citizens who have registered to vote as a measure of Electoral Commission effectiveness.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Commission assessed the suitability of measures relating to electoral registration in preparing its Corporate Plan 2018/19 – 2022/23. The resulting document includes additions to the register as a measure of performance. We also have an impact indicator which relates to the levels of accuracy and completeness of the electoral registers in the UK.

9 Sep 2019, 8:17 a.m. Absent Voting Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what steps the Electoral Commission is taking to increase the take-up of postal votes.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Electoral Commission does not take steps to encourage the take up of particular ways people can cast their vote, but rather provides guidance to support voters in taking their own informed decision.

The only exception to this relates to overseas voters in the lead-up to a poll; where such voters are concerned that their returned postal ballot may not arrive in time, we specifically highlight the option of appointing a proxy.

9 Sep 2019, 8:15 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what the target was for each voter registration campaign for the number of electors they hoped to register in the last five years; how much was allocated for each such campaign; and how much the Electoral Commission planned to spend on each registration campaign.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The table below sets out, for the last five years and for each voter registration campaign, the targets set for additions to the electoral register, and the budget allocated to be spent on each campaign.

For 2015 to 2018, targets relate to additions to the register; for 2019, targets relate to the number of applications. Where targets are not available, this is because specific targets were not set owing to specific circumstances (for example, proximity to other polls).

9 Sep 2019, 8:12 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, if the Electoral Commission will make it its policy to gather information on electoral registration levels on an annual basis.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Commission carries out regular research studies assessing the accuracy and completeness of the registers. The most recent study, based on the December 2018 registers, will be published in the coming months. These important studies are resource intensive, and it would not be good value for money to do them annually.

The Commission, does, however, gather data from Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) on the size of the electoral registers, as well as on other aspects of their activities to register electors, on an annual basis. This data is used as part of our ERO performance standards assessments and also supports the Commission’s ongoing monitoring of the effectiveness of the electoral registration system.

4 Sep 2019, 4:05 p.m. Loneliness: Diseases Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the potential effect of loneliness and social isolation on recovery rates from (i) cardiovascular disease, (ii) cancer and (iii) mental health conditions.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The Department is investing over £1 billion a year in health research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR’s research programmes provide a flexible source of funding. Applications are welcome for research into any aspect of human health, including research on the potential effect of loneliness and social isolation on recovery from Cardiovascular disease, cancer and mental health conditions; it is not usual practice to ring-fence funds for particular topics or conditions. Applications are subject to peer review and judged in open competition, with awards being made on the basis of the importance of the topic to patients and health and care services, value for money and scientific quality.

The NIHR funds a number of research projects exploring the potential effect of loneliness and social isolation on recovery rates from cardiovascular disease, cancer and mental health conditions. Studies range in their focus, from specific vulnerable groups such as the elderly, those with mental health conditions or learning disabilities to the wider impact of social isolation and loneliness on an individual’s physical and mental health and well-being. The NIHR is funding two large studies focussing on improving the quality of life for people with serious mental health conditions, for example a £2.7 million study which includes testing a targeted, intervention to expand social networks of patients with psychosis and a £3.95 million study on immersive virtual reality as a treatment to help individuals with schizophrenia safely and confidently enter everyday situations. A current trial is testing an intervention to improve the physical and mental health outcomes for people who may be isolated due to a range of physical, psychological and social factors. Other studies, whose primary focus is not loneliness or social isolation, explore the effects of these within a broader context, for example a current study is researching the specific late effects of chemotherapy (such as hearing loss) and the associate impact on quality of life, including social isolation.

3 Sep 2019, 1:32 p.m. Veterans Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how much funding his Department has allocated and what research his Department has commissioned to measure the subjective well-being of returning veterans in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Johnny Mercer)

For personnel returning from conflict, the Ministry of Defence (MOD) continues to fund the large scale, ongoing independent study from the King's Centre for Military Health Research (KCMHR), King's College London, which has become an important source of data on the impact of deployment on the overall health and wellbeing of military personnel and veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since 2003 MOD have contributed over £9 million to this study.

A considerable number of research papers, relating to issues such as depression, alcohol abuse, and PTSD, can be accessed on the KCMHR area of the King's College London website at https://www1.kcl.ac.uk/kcmhr/pubdb/ This work continues to produce high quality evidence upon which we can make considered decisions about the way we manage and treat our personnel.

3 Sep 2019, 1:24 p.m. Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether his Department measures optimism in society.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The Cabinet Office does not routinely measure optimism in society. Occasionally questions on optimism may be included in other research studies undertaken by the Cabinet Office for contextual purposes.

3 Sep 2019, 9 a.m. Electoral Register: Students Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of (a) the University of Sheffield's initiative on voter registration for students and (b) mandating universities to promote students to register to vote.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The Government is encouraged by the University of Sheffield’s experience but has no plans to mandate a single approach across the country.

The Government is, however, committed to ensuring the electoral registration system is responsive to the needs of students. Ministerial Guidance was issued to the Office for Students (OfS) in February 2018 acting on a commitment made in Parliament during the
passage of the Higher Education and Research Act (2017), directing that they require Higher Education providers to comply with Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) requests for data and they be encouraged to work with Local Authorities to promote electoral registration amongst their student populations. The merits of working closely with EROs have been demonstrated by a number of Higher Education providers across the country.

Yet, the Government does not believe that one size fits all and instead favours an approach which allows innovation.

The Ministerial Guidance has since been used by the OfS to produce their own guidance to Higher Education providers, which advises them how they might best implement, and abide by, the requirements placed on them. The OfS guidance came into force in August. The Government is committed to ensuring everyone who is eligible to register to vote is able to do so and, in 2014, introduced online registration for the first time. Statistics show young people aged between 14 and 24 are more likely than average to use this as a means of registering to vote.

The Government believes these measures will drive up the number of applications to register from students – improving both the completeness and accuracy of the electoral register – as well as further improve the relationships between Higher Education provider and Local Authorities.

3 Sep 2019, 8:55 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of potential merits of introducing block voter registrations in (a) care homes and (b) university halls of residence.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

Block registration undermines the principles underpinning Individual Electoral Registration that individuals take ownership of their registration status, deciding when and where they want to be registered. The Government, therefore, has no plans to implement any measures, including introducing block registration that would remove this choice

The Government has taken a number of steps to improve student registration. The Higher Education and Research Act 2017 ensures that student electoral registration is a core condition of the new higher education framework and subsequent regulatory guidance for higher education providers reinforces their obligations to promote registration and provides case studies of good practice.

3 Sep 2019, 8:51 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of including information on voter registration in national insurance number notification letters.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The Government has worked closely with HMRC to identify opportunities to promote voter registration, for example in tax information products, and we are continuing to discuss how this might work in other communications, including National Insurance Number notification
letters

In addition, we publish a message reminding people to register to vote on our high traffic GOV.UK pages, such as HMRC and DVLA, in the run-up to electoral registration deadlines.

We welcome new opportunities to signpost voter registration, including to young people, and are continuing to explore physical and online spaces to place prompts with partners across government and the electoral community.

3 Sep 2019, 8:36 a.m. Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of whether there is a variation in wellbeing (a) within and (b) between regions and nations of the UK.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

3 Sep 2019, 8:36 a.m. Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent guidance he has provided to the office for National Statistics on developing indicators to monitor the well-being and happiness of (a) adults and (b) children.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

3 Sep 2019, 8:36 a.m. Health: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the trends in level of childhood happiness and well-being in the last 30 years.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

5 Aug 2019, 10:32 a.m. Electoral Registration Officers: Standards Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, if he will make an assessment of the ability of the Electoral Commission to monitor the performance of electoral registration officers in dealing with electors who (a) have low reading and writing skills, (b) are visually impaired and (c) have learning difficulties.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Electoral Commission sets standards for and monitors the performance of Electoral Registration Officers (EROs). These standards have the objective of ensuring that all eligible people are able to participate in the electoral process.

The Commission provides guidance to EROs to support them in delivering their functions and meeting the performance standards. In developing this guidance to improve the accessibility of electoral registration services, the Commission works with a variety of disability organisations – including groups representing electors with sight loss and learning difficulties – to ensure its work reflects good practice.

5 Aug 2019, 10:25 a.m. Electoral Register: Young People Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what recent assessment the Electoral Commission has made of electoral registration rates of attainers in (a) Scotland, (b) Northern Ireland, (c) Wales and (d) England.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Electoral Commission conducts research into the accuracy and completeness of the electoral registers in the UK at regular intervals. The most recent study was published in 2016 and was an assessment of the December 2015 registers.

The study provided findings on attainers for Great Britain and separately for Northern Ireland. Below the headline findings, it was not possible to report separately for England, Scotland and Wales because of the size of the sample used in the research.

In December 2015, the Commission found that 45% of attainers in Great Britain and 8% in Northern Ireland were correctly registered.

The results of the Commission’s next accuracy and completeness study will be published in autumn 2019.

5 Aug 2019, 10:24 a.m. Election Offences: Prosecutions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, how many successful prosecutions for (a) postal vote fraud, excluding by proxy voting, and (b) electoral registration fraud there have been in each of the last 15 years.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Commission has collected and published information about allegations of electoral fraud from the police since 2008.

The table below shows the number of successful prosecutions for allegations of postal vote and electoral registration fraud. It splits convictions for postal vote fraud into those relating to applications to vote by post and those relating to voting by post.

Number of successful prosecutions relating to postal vote fraud

Year

Convictions relating to applications to vote by post

Convictions relating to voting by post

Convictions relating to electoral registration

2018

0

0

0

2017

0

0

0

2016

0

0

1

2015

0

0

1

2014

0

0

0

2013

0

0

0

2012

0

0

0

2011

0

0

2

2010

1

0

0

2009

n/a

n/a

2

2008

n/a

n/a

0

The police-recorded cases of alleged personation offences in 2008 and 2009 were not broken down to record the type of personation, i.e. polling station, postal voting or proxy voting. It is for this reason these figures are not available.

30 Jul 2019, 9:06 a.m. Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many (a) male adults, (b) female adults, (c) male children and (d) female children were diagnosed with a mental illness in the latest period for which figures are available.

Answer (Ms Nadine Dorries)

The information is not available in the format requested.

29 Jul 2019, 1:19 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the electoral registration rate was in each year since 1997 in the 100 parliamentary constituencies which have had the largest decrease in the number of electors on the register from the date of the local boundary review to July 2019.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

29 Jul 2019, 9:42 a.m. Health: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to encourage health and wellbeing boards to measure and monitor children's subjective well-being as a key outcome in their local area.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

Health and Wellbeing Boards in England bring into one forum representatives from health, social services and the local community to decide what the main public health needs of the local population are, and to determine how best to meet them in an integrated and holistic manner. Health and Wellbeing Boards are required to produce Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) for their area. Based on the needs identified the Board produces a Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy (JHWS). Both the JSNA and JHWS must be taken into account by local authorities, clinical commissioning groups and NHS England when preparing or revising commissioning.

We believe that local leaders are best placed to make decisions as to the need of the population they serve, including for children and young people’s wellbeing. Places such as Greater Manchester Combined Authority have produced a dedicated Children and Young People Health and Wellbeing Framework for 2018-2022.

As health is a devolved matter in Wales, it would therefore be the responsibility of the Welsh Government to decide how to monitor children’s wellbeing.

26 Jul 2019, 1:06 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will commission research on the effect of levels of functional illiteracy on electoral registration rates.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

In its democratic engagement plan, Every Voice Matters: Building a Democracy That Works For Everyone, the Government explored key barriers to registration identified through research and face to face engagement. We are tackling these barriers, including those faced by survivors of domestic abuse, homeless electors and young people, and have reported on our progress in our follow up report, Democratic Engagement: Respecting, Protecting and Promoting our Democracy.

Although it did not emerge as a factor in its own right, we are aware of the potential contribution that lack of literacy makes to the under registration of a number of groups, such as those with learning disabilities, homeless people and those with specific language barriers.

The voter registration website is reviewed regularly to ensure it meets the Government’s service design standards to make it as easy to use as possible and we have produced easy read guides to registering to vote in partnership with Mencap. We are also working with civil society organisations to encourage engagement with those under registered groups who are more likely to experience lower levels of literacy.

26 Jul 2019, 1:06 p.m. Electoral Registration Officers: Local Government Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what additional central Government funding was made available to electoral registration officers for electoral registration in each of the last five years; and which local authorities were successful in bidding for that funding.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

Since 2015, Cabinet Office has provided five years of annual grant funding to Electoral Registration Officers in England, Scotland and Wales to cover the additional cost that Individual Electoral Registration (IER) introduced to the registration system.

Initial in-year allocations are paid to all local authorities in England and Wales, and valuation joint boards in Scotland as early in the financial year as possible. If local authorities/valuation joint boards require further additional funding, they are required to submit a justification led bid (JLB) towards the end of the financial year.
Since 2015, the Cabinet Office has provided £96M to cover these additional costs

● 15/16, £27M
● 16/17, £21M
● 17/18, £18M
● 18/19, £16M
● 19/20, £14M (initial allocations announced and payments being processed – does not include JLB funding.)
Since 2015/16, 50% of the Local Authorities and Valuation Joint Boards have received additional JLB funding on top of the initial allocation in at least one of the years of funding.

It is anticipated that plans to reform the annual canvass of electors will significantly reduce the overall cost of electoral registration and place electoral registration services on a more sustainable footing.

26 Jul 2019, 1:05 p.m. Electoral Registration Officers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many electoral registration officers have been convicted of an offence related to failure to take sufficient steps to register electors under section 9A of the Electoral Registration Act 2006.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The Cabinet Office is not aware of any convictions of electoral registration officers under section 9A of the Electoral Registration Act 2006.

26 Jul 2019, 1:05 p.m. Electoral Registration Officers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to the Answer of 20 July 2010, Official Report, column 298W, on Electoral Register, how many electoral registration officers have been convicted of an offence related to failure to take sufficient steps to register electors under section 9A of the Electoral Registration Act 2006.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The Cabinet Office is not aware of any convictions of electoral registration officers under section 9A of the Electoral Registration Act 2006.

26 Jul 2019, 1:05 p.m. Electoral Registration Officers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what (a) central Government and (b) local government databases electoral registration officers may use in undertaking their registration functions.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

Regulation 23 of the Representation of the People (England and Wales) Regulations 2001 and the Representation of the People (Scotland) Regulations 2001 gives Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) wide-ranging powers to request whatever information and data they require for the purposes of maintaining the electoral registers. EROs are therefore entitled to request datasets from organisations which would help them undertake their registration functions.

Online applications via the Register to Vote website are verified via the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service (IER DS) using Department for Work and Pensions data. EROs also use local government data in carrying out their registration duties. Commonly used datasets include council tax, housing and housing benefit data, adult social care data, and school admissions data.

26 Jul 2019, 1:05 p.m. Electoral Registration Officers: Databases Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what (a) national and (b) local authority databases may be inspected by electoral registration officers.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

Regulation 23 of the Representation of the People (England and Wales) Regulations 2001 and the Representation of the People (Scotland) Regulations 2001 gives Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) wide-ranging powers to request whatever information and data they require for the purposes of maintaining the electoral registers. EROs are therefore entitled to request datasets from organisations which would help them undertake their registration functions.

Online applications via the Register to Vote website are verified via the Individual Electoral Registration Digital Service (IER DS) using Department for Work and Pensions data. EROs also use local government data in carrying out their registration duties. Commonly used datasets include council tax, housing and housing benefit data, adult social care data, and school admissions data.

26 Jul 2019, 1:05 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what his most recent estimate is of the electoral registration rate for each region of the UK.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The Cabinet Office does not hold this information. Registration statistics, including a breakdown of the numbers of people registered in each UK region, are available from the Office for National Statistics’ (ONS) website: www.ons.gov.uk

Estimates of the completeness and accuracy – including those for regions across the UK – are published by the Electoral Commission. The latest report on register completeness and accuracy was produced by the Electoral Commission in 2016 and is available online: www.electoralcommission.org.uk.

16 Jul 2019, 12:42 p.m. Universal Credit: Terminal Illnesses Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 9 July 2019 to Question 273334, if she will make it her Department's policy to mandate her Department's assessors to record instances in which they have formally questioned a prognosis given by health professionals in DS1500 forms.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

Guidance for assessors is that they should contact the clinician who has completed a DS1500 for clarification if it contains insufficient information, or where no DS1500 is received, to confirm that the claimant is terminally ill. The assessor will record the outcome of their engagement with the clinician when providing their advice to the Department, but these records are not centrally collated.

To be clear, the DS1500 states that the clinician is not required to provide a prognosis. Rather, they are asked to provide details of their patient’s diagnosis, clinical features and current or planned treatment.

16 Jul 2019, 12:04 p.m. Pregnancy: Prisoners Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 8 July 2019 to Question 272159, what assessment he has made of the merits of the recommendations made in the Birth Companions Report entitled Birth Charter for women in prisons in England and Wales; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

No formal assessment has been made.

NHS England and NHS Improvement are responsible for commissioning healthcare services in prisons in England. It is working closely with Public Health England and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service on a review of how current practice meets the Gender Specific Standards for Women in Prison to improve health and wellbeing, published in March 2019. Standards are included around the care of pregnant and post pregnant women.

NHS England is developing a mental health perinatal service to ensure maternity services meet the needs of pregnant and post-partum women across the estate.

15 Jul 2019, 2:45 p.m. Optoelectronics Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent assessment he has made of the size of the optoelectronics industry in the UK.

Answer (Chris Skidmore)

Official statistics are not published to a sufficient level of detail to identify the size of the optoelectronics sector in the UK.

The Government does however work closely with both the Photonics Leadership Council and the Elect-Tech Council. The Council’s “UK Photonics: The Hidden Economic Engine” identifies the UK’s significant strengths in Photonics, including optoelectronics.

15 Jul 2019, 2:03 p.m. Antibiotics: Drug Resistance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to monitor antibiotic resistant bugs in seagull faeces in the UK.

Answer (David Rutley)

The Government conducts surveillance of antimicrobial resistance in animals and publishes the results annually on GOV.UK in the Veterinary Antibiotic Sales and Surveillance report. These surveillance programmes do not include wildlife.

15 Jul 2019, 12:51 p.m. Pupils: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Written Statement of 8 July 2019, Children’s health and wellbeing in schools, HCWS 1695, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of introducing a compulsory healthy schools rating scheme.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

Our healthy schools rating scheme is designed to recognise and encourage schools’ contributions to pupils’ health and wellbeing. It celebrates the positive actions that schools are taking in terms of healthy eating and physical activity and aims to help schools identify useful next steps in their provision.

The government stated in the first chapter of the Childhood Obesity Plan that this will be a voluntary scheme. We do not believe that it is appropriate to introduce a new compulsory duty on schools in this area.

The scheme focuses on 4 overarching areas that we believe are important to children’s healthy living (food education, school food standards, participation in physical education and active travel to school). We welcome feedback to help us improve the scheme during its first year.

11 Jul 2019, 1:53 p.m. Local Housing Allowance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment he has made of the proportion of single room properties that were affordable for local housing allowance claimants in each region of England in (a) 2010 and (b) the most recent period for which data is available.

Answer (Will Quince)

In 2010, Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates were set at the 50th percentile of local rents, so half of non-housing benefit properties in the private rented sector were available within the LHA rate.

The proportion of non-housing benefit single room accommodation available within the LHA rate by region in England for 2018/19 are as follows:

East Midlands

15%

Eastern

13%

London

8%

North East

14%

North West

15%

South East

14%

South West

15%

West Midlands

16%

Yorkshire & The Humber

21%

Note: figures are exclusive of housing benefit properties as the lettings data used to calculate the LHA is exclusive of tenancies where the claimant is in receipt of housing benefit.

There are no current plans to extend or maintain the LHA Freeze after March 2020. Specific decisions on how to uprate the Local Housing Allowance rates from April 2020 will form part of the discussions in support of fiscal events later this year.

11 Jul 2019, 11:17 a.m. Prisoners: Depressive Illnesses Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 8 July 2019 to Question 272160 on Prisoners: Depressive Illnesses, if he will make it his policy to centrally record that data.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

There are no plans to record this data centrally.

11 Jul 2019, 10:45 a.m. Wylfa Power Station Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent progress the Government has made on the future of the proposed Wylfa Newydd power plant.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

Wylfa Newydd remains a suitable site for nuclear new build in the future. The site is still owned by Hitachi, and the UK Government remains in discussions with them regarding its future.

We are committed to creating a broad-based resilient economy through our modern Industrial Strategy and will continue to work with the Welsh Government and local partners to ensure that North Wales prospers.

The Government remains committed to the nuclear sector, giving the go ahead to the first new nuclear power station in a generation at Hinkley Point C and investing £200m through our landmark Nuclear Sector Deal, which was signed in North Wales.

9 Jul 2019, 12:56 p.m. Stem Cells: Donors Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to increase BAME recruitment to the stem cell registry.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

Since 2011 the Department has provided over £26.8 million in financial support to NHS Blood and Transplant and Anthony Nolan to enable the establishment of a unified United Kingdom Stem Cell Registry and improve access to and outcomes of stem cell donation. This includes improving equity of access to unrelated donor stem cell transplantation for black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) patients through targeted recruitment to the UK Stem Cell Registry and the Department has set specific targets about the proportion of donors that must be from BAME backgrounds.

4 Jul 2019, 11:23 a.m. Health: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 1 July 2019 to Question 268980 on Health: Children, to which published research that Answer refers.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

There are numerous published sources on adverse childhood experiences, including:

UCL Institute of Health Equity published ‘The impact of adverse experiences in the home on the health of children and young people, and inequalities in prevalence and effects’ (2016). The report is available at the following link:

http://www.instituteofhealthequity.org/resources-reports/the-impact-of-adverse-experiences-in-the-home-on-children-and-young-people/impact-of-adverse-experiences-in-the-home.pdf

The Journal of Public Health published ‘Adverse childhood experiences: retrospective study to determine their impact on adult health behaviours and health outcomes in a UK population’. The report is available at the following link:

https://academic.oup.com/jpubhealth/article/36/1/81/1571104?searchresult=1

3 Jul 2019, 3:25 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Medical Examinations Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of (a) personal independence payments and (b) employment and support allowance assessments undertaken by (i) ATOS, (ii) Capita, and (iii) Maximus which have resulted in a complaint in each of the last six years.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

Assessment Providers have their own complaints process to deal with dissatisfaction about the service they provide. I am unable to provide figures solely about the ‘assessment undertaken’ therefore the figures below include all related complaints such as administrative, clinical, accommodation etc.

(i), (ii) Information on the number of complaints received by Independent Assessment Service (IAS), formally ATOS, and Capita are shown in the table below: -

Year

Complaints received by IAS (prev ATOS)

Complaints received by Capita

Total number of complaints received

Complaints as a percentage of assessments

2013

390

940

1320

3.5%

2014

3090

5890

8980

2.2%

2015

2690

1826

4510

0.7%

2016

3780

3000

6780

0.7%

2017

5400

3530

8930

0.9%

2018

5870

3490

9360

1.0%

Source: Provider MI, figures rounded to nearest 10.

(iii) The Health Assessment Advisory Service is delivered on behalf of DWP by Centre for Health and Disability Assessments (CHDA) which is a MAXIMUS company. Information on the number of complaints received by CHDA in relation to ESA and UC Work Capability Assessments is only available from quarter ending August 2016.

Quarter

Complaints received by CHDA

Complaints as a percentage of assessments

Aug 16

1120

0.6%

Nov 16

1170

0.7%

Feb 17

1150

0.6%

May 17

1230

0.7%

Aug 17

1190

0.6%

Nov 17

1140

0.6%

Feb 18

1010

0.5%

May 18

1020

0.6%

Aug 18

980

0.5%

Nov 18

970

0.5%

Feb 19

950

0.5%

May 19

930

0.5%

Source: Provider MI, figures rounded to nearest 10

2 Jul 2019, 2:59 p.m. Child Benefit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the effect of the two-child benefit limit on levels of domestic violence; and if she will make a statement.

Answer (Will Quince)

Domestic abuse is a huge problem in our society, with a number of contributing factors, as well as far-reaching and devastating impacts. It is an extremely complex crime which can affect anyone and this Government takes the issue very seriously. DWP is committed to doing all we can to support victims of domestic and economic abuse. All work coaches undergo mandatory training in how to support vulnerable claimants including recognising the signs of domestic abuse. By summer 2019, we will have domestic abuse specialists in every Jobcentre.

We have also been closely engaging with key domestic abuse stakeholders on a range of topics and we will continue to work closely with them on improving our services, policies and support for victims of abuse.

2 Jul 2019, 2:21 p.m. Child Benefit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of individuals affected by the two-child benefit limit are in working households in (a) Wales and (b) the UK.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department will shortly be providing updated figures to those we published in June 2018. This will show the number of claimants affected by the policy to provide support for a maximum of two children as at April 2019.

The full breakdown of the current statistics can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-tax-credit-and-universal-credit-claimants-statistics-related-to-the-policy-to-provide-support-for-a-maximum-of-2-children-april-2018

2 Jul 2019, 2:21 p.m. Child Benefit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many children have been affected by the two-child benefit limit in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department will shortly be providing updated figures to those we published in June 2018. This will show the number of claimants affected by the policy to provide support for a maximum of two children as at April 2019.

The full breakdown of the current statistics can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-tax-credit-and-universal-credit-claimants-statistics-related-to-the-policy-to-provide-support-for-a-maximum-of-2-children-april-2018

1 Jul 2019, 1:29 p.m. Dementia Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the diagnosis rates of dementia in each local authority area.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Challenge on Dementia 2020 sets out the ambition for two thirds of people with dementia to receive a formal diagnosis. This has been achieved nationally.

NHS Digital collects data on the number of patients with a recorded dementia diagnosis in their clinical record and report the estimated dementia diagnosis rate by local authority area on a monthly basis. The data is available at the following link:

https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/publications/statistical/recorded-dementia-diagnoses

1 Jul 2019, 1:23 p.m. Health: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the proportion of children who have experienced adverse childhood experiences in each National Statistics Socio-economic classification.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

No such estimate has been made. The Department is aware of published research that indicates children growing up in lower socioeconomic groups are more likely to be exposed to adverse childhood experiences compared to more advantaged peers.

1 Jul 2019, 11:44 a.m. Public Expenditure: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, with reference to the funding package announced for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, what assessment he has made of the Barnett consequential for Wales.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

The UK Government contribution to the 2022 Commonwealth Games budget is subject to the Barnett Formula which HM Treasury will apply in the normal way at the Spending Review, as set out in the Statement of Funding Policy.

27 Jun 2019, 11:15 a.m. Economic Growth Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the recommendations of the all-party parliamentary group on wellbeing economics' report entitled A spending review to increase wellbeing, published 24 May 2019; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

I have noted the All Party Parliamentary Group on Wellbeing Economics report and the Treasury regularly receive representations on all aspects of public spending. The forthcoming Spending Review will allow us to take a systematic view of all public spending and introduce reforms in line with the Government’s vision for the UK economy and public services.

This will include working closely with departments to identify priorities and inform decisions on how to direct resources to improve people’s opportunities over the long-term.

27 Jun 2019, 9:58 a.m. Homelessness: Death Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will list the 10 local authorities with the greatest number of recorded homeless deaths since 2010.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

27 Jun 2019, 9:43 a.m. Local Government Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will list the 10 local authorities with the greatest real terms reduction in central government funding since 2010.

Answer (Rishi Sunak)

Due to changes in the finance and function of local government, there is no consistent measure of central government funding since 2010. The Department’s preferred measure of local government funding is Core Spending Power. Core Spending power is comparable over the period 2015-16 to 2019-20 and published in cash terms on the Department's website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/core-spending-power-final-local-government-finance-settlement-2019-to-2020

The 10 local authorities with the greatest reduction in Core Spending Power over the period 2015-16 to 2019-20 are listed below:

Basingstoke and Deane

Brentwood

East Cambridgeshire

Epsom and Ewell

Forest Heath

Gedling

Huntingdonshire

North Dorset

St Albans

Watford

24 Jun 2019, 12:39 p.m. Incapacity Benefit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the amount of funding allocated to incapacity benefit as a proportion of (a) GDP and (b) the GDP average of OECD member states, excluding the UK.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

According to latest OECD data, the UK spent 1.85% of its GDP to support disabled people and those with health conditions. The OECD average is 1.93%.

UK

OECD Average (including UK)

Total (share of GDP)

1.85%

1.93%

Source: https://stats.oecd.org/Index.aspx?datasetcode=SOCX_AGG, OECD 2015 data (latest data point).

24 Jun 2019, 10:09 a.m. Economic Situation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the IPPR report Measuring the benefits of integration: The value of tackling skills underutilisation, published 18 June 2019, what assessment he has made of the effect on the economy of migrants employed in positions for which they are overqualified.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

The Treasury has not conducted analysis on the specific question of overqualification of migrants.

The future immigration system will support the UK economy to access the talent it needs. The Government has initiated an extensive programme of engagement to capture views, and ensure that we design a future system that works for the whole of the UK.

20 Jun 2019, 3:59 p.m. Personal Income: Sheffield Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if her Department will take steps to monitor the roll out of a universal basic income pilot by Sheffield City Council; and if she will make a statement.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

We are aware of experiments in universal basic income (UBI) around the world and we do not believe there is a case for UBI. We believe Universal Credit is the right approach for the UK because it simplifies the benefit system, promotes and incentivises work, including progression in work, and provides targeted support to those in most need in a way that is affordable.

In February 2018 the OECD concluded in its survey of the Finnish Economy that the complexity of the current benefits system in Finland was an obstacle to stepping into work and that the basic income experiment, whilst possibly enhancing work incentives, may increase poverty and would require increasing income taxation by nearly 30%. More recently, findings from the evaluation of the Finnish basic income experiment show some improvement in perceived wellbeing, but that it did not increase the employment level of the participants in the first year of the experiment. The OECD also developed a scenario for Finland inspired by the UK’s Universal Credit (UC). They found that this ‘would consistently improve work incentives and reduce complexity, with limited changes to the income distribution and limited fiscal cost.

This OECD blog post is particularly useful on the OECD’s work to compare UBI and UC.

18 Jun 2019, 1:39 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 10 June 2019 to Question 262260 and with reference to the Written Statement of 24 July 2018, HCWS927 on local growth, if he will publish an updated timescale for the public consultation on the design of the UK Shared Prosperity.

Answer (Jake Berry)

The Government recognises the importance of reassuring local areas on the future of local growth funding and will consult widely on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

We believe leaving the European Union with a deal is the best outcome and remain focused on ensuring a smooth and orderly withdrawal. It is right, however, that we also continue to prepare for all scenarios. Therefore, we continue to review our approach to consulting on the Fund.

18 Jun 2019, 1:23 p.m. Hate Crime Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the effect of (a) political discourse, (b) the print media and (c) social media on the level of hate crime in the UK in the last five years; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Victoria Atkins)

The Home Office and key partners continue to build understanding of the drivers of hate crime through research and evaluation of hate crime programmes, and consultation with subject matter experts including the Independent Advisory Group and local practitioners.

Alongside the Hate Crime Action Plan refresh in October 2018 the Government published a thematic review of the current evidence base – this can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/hate-crime-action-plan-2016. The review highlighted the complex nature of the drivers and harms of hate crime, including the impact of political and other events, such as the 2017 terrorist attacks, in triggering ‘spikes’ in offending.

In recognition that political discourse, the print media and social media may have a role in hate crime, the Action Plan set out a number of commitments, including work with the Society of Editors and the Independent Press Standards Organisation. More broadly the Government published the Online Harms White Paper on 8 April 2019, and delivered a communications campaign to increase public awareness of the different forms hate crime can take.

17 Jun 2019, 3:51 p.m. Ministry of Defence: Statistics Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, on how many occasions her Department has received representations from the UK Statistics Authority on her Department's presentation and use of statistics in each year since 2010.

Answer (Mr Tobias Ellwood)

Details on the UK Statistics Authority's interventions are published in the correspondence[1], publications[2], and issues log[3] sections of their website since 2010.

The Authority's Office for Statistics Regulation (OSR) also carry out regular assessments and systemic reviews, details of which can also be found on the Authority's website[4].

In September 2018, the Authority published the first annual summary of its interventions for the financial year 2017-18[5]. The report for 2018-19 will be published in the autumn.

[1] https://www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/correspondence-list/

[2] https://www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/publications-list/

[3] https://www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/reports-and-correspondence/issues-log/

[4] https://www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/osr/

[5] https://www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/publication/annual-casework-review-20172018/

17 Jun 2019, 2:48 p.m. Digital Technology: Denbighshire Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 11 June 2019 to Question 261114 on Digital Technology: North Wales, which public buildings in Denbighshire have (a) received fibre upgrades and (b) are in the process of receiving fibre upgrades.

Answer (Margot James)

Due to the commercially sensitive information, it would be inappropriate to disclose the exact figures. However, officials at Building Digital UK are working closely with their Welsh counterparts, and have identified a large number of public sector sites within the North Wales Local Full Fibre Networks project that are suitable for gigabit capable upgrades. All sites are subject to survey and as such, the number of final sites is subject to change.

17 Jun 2019, 2:47 p.m. Digital Technology: North Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 11 June 2019, to Question 261114 on Digital Technology: North Wales, what assessment he has made of the proportion of the Superfast Cymru programme funded by the EU.

Answer (Margot James)

To date, £100,340,636 of European funding has been allocated to Superfast Cymru for the purpose of superfast broadband rollout.

17 Jun 2019, 2:22 p.m. Pension Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 11 June to Question 257471 on Department for Work and Pensions: Metro Newspaper, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of an advertorial campaign to (a) promote awareness of pension credit eligibility and (b) encourage the take-up of pension credit.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

We already use a variety of different channels to communicate information about Pension Credit to potential customers including GOV.UK, the online Pension Credit calculator and the Pension Credit toolkit, which is an on-line tool for agencies and welfare rights organisations to use in order to encourage Pension Credit take-up.

17 Jun 2019, 2:14 p.m. Prime Minister: Statistics Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Prime Minister, on how many occasions her office has received representations from the UK Statistics Authority on her office's presentation and use of statistics in each year since 2010..

Answer (Mrs Theresa May)

The information is not held.

17 Jun 2019, 8:56 a.m. Wales Office: Statistics Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, on how many occasions his Department has received representations from the UK Statistics Authority on his Department's presentation and use of statistics in each year since 2010.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

Details on the UK Statistics Authority’s interventions are published in the correspondence, publications, and issues log sections of their website since 2010.

The Authority’s Office for Statistics Regulation (OSR) also carry out regular assessments and systemic reviews, details of which can also be found on the Authority’s website.

In September 2018, the Authority published the first annual summary of its interventions for the financial year 2017/18. The report for 2018/19 will be published in the autumn.

13 Jun 2019, 1:57 p.m. Television: Licensing Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the number of pensioners who will be affected by the BBC's decision to charge people aged over 75 for tv licences.

Answer (Margot James)

The BBC is responsible for the collection and enforcement of the licence fee. It estimates that 4.5 million pensioner households are eligible for the existing over 75 licence fee concession. It estimates that 900,000 households will continue to receive a free TV licence from 2020/21, rising to 1.5 million households if all pensioners eligible take up Pension Credit.

13 Jun 2019, 1:56 p.m. Television: Concessions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions the Government held with pensioner groups prior to his Department's decision to transfer responsibility for funding TV licences for people aged over 75 to the BBC.

Answer (Margot James)

The Government agreed with the BBC at the 2015 funding settlement that responsibility for the concession will transfer to the BBC in 2020. The future of the concession was a decision for the BBC. Following a public consultation, including with pensioner groups, it has decided to maintain the concession for the poorest pensioners.

13 Jun 2019, 11:32 a.m. Hate Crime Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate he has made of the number of recorded hate crimes by each protected characteristic defined in the Equality Act 2010 in each year since 2010.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office collects and publishes statistics on the number of hate crimes recorded by the police in England and Wales since 2011/12 in Table 2 of the Hate Crime data tables available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/hate-crime-england-and-wales-2017-to-2018. Such data was not collected prior to 2011/12 and data for 2018/19 are due to be published later this year.

12 Jun 2019, 3:43 p.m. Poverty: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment he has made of the effect of housing costs on the level of child poverty; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Will Quince)

The Department looks at rates of child poverty both before and after housing costs. Absolute child poverty after housing costs has reduced from 28% in 2009/10 to 26% in 2017/18. However, this is higher than the absolute child poverty rate before housing costs which was 18% in 2017/18, suggesting that housing costs have an effect on rates of children in low income households.

12 Jun 2019, 11:56 a.m. Poverty: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment he has made of trends in the level of child poverty (a) before and (b) after housing costs have been taken into account in each local authority in Wales in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Will Quince)

National statistics on the number of people in relative and absolute low income are set out in the annual "Households Below Average Income" publication. The number and proportion of children in low income is not available at local authority or constituency level in this publication because the survey sample sizes are too small to support the production of robust estimates at this geography.

3-year estimates for the proportion of children in before and after housing cost low income in the Wales region are available using the link below, in the file “children-hbai-timeseries-1994-95-2017-18-tables.ods”.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/789816/hbai-2017-2018-tables-ods-files.zip

Table 4.16ts shows child relative low income estimates and table 4.22ts shows child absolute low income estimates.

11 Jun 2019, 3:02 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of personal independence payment and employment and support allowance decisions made by (a) ATOS, and (b) Maximus were overturned on appeal in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

Assessment Providers do not make the benefit decisions which are appealed to Her Majesty's Court and Tribunal Service (HMCTS). They provide assessment reports to the department’s decision makers who use that as evidence to make the actual benefit decision. It is that decision which is appealed.

PIP assessments are delivered by IAS (formally known as Atos) and Capita. Information on the proportion of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) decisions following an IAS assessment that are overturned on appeal is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

ESA Work Capability Assessments (WCA) are delivered by the Centre for Health and Disability Assessments (CHDA), operated by Maximus. CHDA began delivering WCAs from March 2015. Experimental statistics on the number of ESA (WCA) completed and the number where the decision was overturned on appeal by period of claim start are available in Table 17 of the publication “ESA: outcomes of Work Capability Assessments including mandatory reconsiderations and appeals: March 2019”, available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/esa-outcomes-of-work-capability-assessments-including-mandatory-reconsiderations-and-appeals-march-2019

11 Jun 2019, 11:43 a.m. Social Security Benefits: Medical Examinations Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to her Written Statement of 5 March 2019, HC WS1376, if she will place in the Library a copy of the contract terms for the extension of the Health and Disability Assessment Service.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The negotiations to extend the Health and Disability Assessment Service contract for 17 months until 31 July 2021 are still to be concluded. There are currently no plans to publish a redacted version of the contract which supports this extension in the House of Commons library.

10 Jun 2019, 2 p.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the proportion of universal credit claimants who have had payments reduced because they had previously received advances.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Universal Credit (UC) new claim advances provide access to a payment for those in financial need, which can be accessed on the same day, until their first UC payment is due. Claimants can access up to 100% of the total expected monthly award, for which they can pay back over a period of up to 12 months.

The Department has taken a number of steps to ensure that advances meet the needs of claimants and that recovery arrangements are personalised and reasonable. From October 2019 we are reducing the maximum rate of deductions to 30 per cent and from October 2021 we are increasing the maximum recovery period for advances from 12 to 16 months.

The latest available data is for eligible claims to UC Full Service that are due a payment in February 2019. Of these claims 44% had a deduction to repay a UC advance.

Notes:

  1. Data has been sourced from UC Full Service.
10 Jun 2019, 12:49 p.m. Poverty Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 5 June 2019 to Question 257500, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of formally adopting a definition for destitution.

Answer (Will Quince)

This Government is committed to broadening our understanding of people’s living standards. New experimental statistics to measure poverty are being developed, based on the work undertaken by the Social Metrics Commission (SMC) which was presented in the SMC’s ‘A New Measure of Poverty’ report last year. This development work includes consideration of groups of people previously omitted from poverty statistics, like rough sleepers and those just above the low income threshold but in overcrowded housing, as well as consideration of a wider measurement framework of poverty covering the depth, persistence and lived experience of poverty.

There is no agreed way of defining destitution. External organisations (most notably the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF)) have attempted to define and measure destitution. The JRF’s definition of destitution, however, is complex, and challenging to measure with accuracy. The JRF admit that there is a wide margin of uncertainty about the numbers they identify as destitute. The government therefore has no plans to adopt this definition as any official definition of destitution should be measurable and accurate.

5 Jun 2019, 2:56 p.m. Armed Forces: Loneliness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent assessment he has made of the prevalence of social isolation and loneliness in the armed forces community.

Answer (Mr Tobias Ellwood)

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) values the work of the Royal British Legion (RBL) and its report "Loneliness and Social Isolation in the Armed Forces Community". Officials have engaged with the RBL on the recommendations of this report which is assisting us shape our work on the Strategy for our Veterans and the development of a new transition policy to better prepare our Service leavers for life after leaving the Armed Forces. This includes work on developing resilience for the future and identifying those who may need additional help.

The MOD continues to engage with the Service Families Federations and is actively engaged with the welfare and issues of families in isolated locations. A question on loneliness has been introduced into the annual Families Continuous Attitude Survey. This will give the Department a better understanding of the prevalence of loneliness, and whether there are any factors associated with the risk of loneliness. The data will also contribute to cross-Government understanding of the prevalence of loneliness across society.

5 Jun 2019, 2:56 p.m. Armed Forces: Loneliness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether her Department plans to respond to the recommendations made by the Royal British Legion in their report entitled Loneliness and social isolation in the armed forces community.

Answer (Mr Tobias Ellwood)

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) values the work of the Royal British Legion (RBL) and its report "Loneliness and Social Isolation in the Armed Forces Community". Officials have engaged with the RBL on the recommendations of this report which is assisting us shape our work on the Strategy for our Veterans and the development of a new transition policy to better prepare our Service leavers for life after leaving the Armed Forces. This includes work on developing resilience for the future and identifying those who may need additional help.

The MOD continues to engage with the Service Families Federations and is actively engaged with the welfare and issues of families in isolated locations. A question on loneliness has been introduced into the annual Families Continuous Attitude Survey. This will give the Department a better understanding of the prevalence of loneliness, and whether there are any factors associated with the risk of loneliness. The data will also contribute to cross-Government understanding of the prevalence of loneliness across society.

5 Jun 2019, 1:33 p.m. Poverty Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what criteria her Department uses to assess whether people are (a) destitute and (b) living in destitution.

Answer (Will Quince)

There is no official definition of destitution. The Department for Work and Pensions annually publishes Households Below Average Income (HBAI) statistics, based on the Family Resources Survey, which sets out four official measures of relative and absolute low income before and after housing costs. The closest measure in HBAI to a measure of destitution is the number of children in “severe low income” (50% of median before housing costs). HBAI also provides measures of material deprivation based on questions to parents and pensioners about their ability to afford the basics in life such as heating homes and paying bills. In addition, new questions have been added to the Family Resources Survey to develop a food insecurity measure from 2021.

New experimental statistics to measure poverty will be developed, and published by DWP in 2020. The new analysis will be based on the work undertaken by the Social Metrics Commission (SMC) which was presented in the SMC’s ‘A New Measure of Poverty’ report last year.

4 Jun 2019, 4:16 p.m. Health Services: Autism and Learning Disability Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to Written Statement of 21 May 2019, Care Quality Commission Thematic Review of Restrictive Practices, Seclusion and Segregation, HCWS 1569, what additional resources his Department plans to allocate to scrutinise cases of exclusion and long term segregation; and what assessment he has made of the timeframe required to review each such case.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

On 21 May 2019, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) published its ‘Interim Report: Review of restraint, prolonged seclusion and segregation for people with a mental health problem, a learning disability and or autism.’ The Government has accepted all five of the recommendations in the CQC’s interim report including the recommendation that over the next 12 months, there should be an independent and an in-depth review of the care provided to, and the discharge plan for, each person who is in segregation on a ward for children and young people or on a ward for people with a learning disability and/or autism.

The Department is committed to working with partners across the health, education and care system to ensure that all of the recommendations are implemented effectively.

We will ensure the care of each and every person detained in seclusion or long term segregation is thoroughly scrutinised. The timeframe required to review each case will be case-specific but each review will be conducted efficiently. We are working with the CQC, NHS England and other partner organisations on the arrangements for the reviews and their oversight and will publish further details shortly.

4 Jun 2019, 2:38 p.m. Poverty: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 20 May 2019 to Question 254154 on Poverty: Children, what assessment she has made of the reasons for the decline in the number of children in absolute low-income households between 2004-5 and 2009-10.

Answer (Will Quince)

Absolute low income takes the 60 per cent of median income threshold from 2010/11 and moves this in line with inflation. This is designed to assess how low incomes are faring with reference to inflation. The percentage of individuals in absolute low income will decrease if individuals with lower incomes see their real incomes rising (increasing by more than inflation).

Trends in the number of children in absolute poverty can be found using the link below, in table 4.4tr, in the file “children-trends-hbai-1994-95-2017-18-tables.ods”.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/789816/hbai-2017-2018-tables-ods-files.zip

Between 2004/05 and 2009/10 the number of children in absolute low income households before housing costs fell, indicating that children in lower income households saw their real incomes rise by more than inflation. However, the number of children in absolute low income households after housing costs was 3.8m in both 2004/05 and 2009/10. This suggests that for low income households with children, these real rises in income were offset by increasing housing costs during this period.

4 Jun 2019, 2:27 p.m. Poverty: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of children in absolute poverty in each year between 1989 and 1997.

Answer (Will Quince)

National statistics on the number of children living in absolute low income are published annually in the “Households Below Average Income” publication.

HBAI data is unavailable before 1994/95 and are for the United Kingdom from 2002/03 onwards. Earlier years are for Great Britain only. The number of children in absolute poverty from 1994/95 can be found using the link below, in table 4.4tr, in the file “children-trends-hbai-1994-95-2017-18-tables.ods”.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/789816/hbai-2017-2018-tables-ods-files.zip

4 Jun 2019, 7:56 a.m. Natural Gas: Prices Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent comparative assessment he has made of the cost of gas to British consumers relative to the cost to consumers in each of the other member states of the EU.

Answer (Chris Skidmore)

The Department is committed to regular and transparent reporting on the price of gas for UK consumers and currently publishes a price comparison with EU member states on a bi-annual basis. The latest statistical reports from this series are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/international-domestic-energy-prices

The UK has some of the lowest domestic gas prices in the EU. Average prices paid by consumers for the period January to June 2018 were the second lowest in the EU15 and were 31 per cent lower than the median average price.

Recent figures also show that gas prices for UK consumers has been consistently cheaper than the median average for all EU member states (EU28) since 2016 currently peaking at 15.5% cheaper in the first half of 2018.

These figures are for average domestic gas prices including taxes paid for by UK domestic consumers, with a consumption level of the EU’s definition of a ‘medium’ amount of gas per annum (5,557 – 55,557 kWh).

4 Jun 2019, 7:56 a.m. Energy: Consumers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to promote awareness of Ofgem's priority services register.

Answer (Chris Skidmore)

Ofgem requires energy companies to promote and maintain a Priority Services Register (PSR), to provide non-financial help to certain groups of vulnerable consumers. Ofgem is responsible for ensuring compliance with these requirements.

In 2016, Ofgem introduced new requirements that companies take all reasonable steps to identify customers who may benefit from PSR services and introduced a broad “Vulnerability Principle” in 2017, which clarifies that suppliers need to make an extra effort to identify and respond to the needs of consumers in vulnerable situations, which can help identify those who could benefit from PSR services.

The number of consumers on PSRs has risen from 1.7 million electricity and 1.4 million gas consumers in 2010, to nearly 6 million electricity and 4.8 million gas consumers in 2017. Ofgem publish information on energy company performance, available online at:

https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/system/files/docs/2018/11/vulnerability_report_2018.pdf

Ofgem is also working to promote PSR data sharing between energy and water companies in England and Wales (with the customer’s consent) following a successful pilot in Spring 2018.

3 Jun 2019, 12:46 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Disqualification Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many three year sanctions were issued by her Department to social security benefit recipients in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Information on the number of three years’ sanctions is recorded on our systems and we centrally collate some Management Information. However, the total number cannot be calculated as it is collected across different benefits on different systems and is not centrally collated in a way that allows analysis to be undertaken easily. An extensive interrogation of our systems would be required in order to provide the information requested, which would incur disproportionate cost.

Nevertheless, from the Department’s quarterly sanctions publication, in table 1.7 of the supporting data tables, 2,904 individuals have received three (or more) high level JSA sanction failures, from October 2012 to January 2019. It is not possible to readily unpick how many of these were 3 year sanctions (if two high level sanctions received by an individual were more than a year apart then that would mean they would not have been escalated up to a 3 year sanction duration after their 3rd high level failure). The published data on individuals that received a third high level JSA sanction cannot be split by year. This is because the data is not structured in a way to readily analyse this.

23 May 2019, 3:17 p.m. North Wales Police: Expenditure Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 20 May 2019 to Question 254750, how much and what proportion of core grant funding for territorial police forces was allocated to North Wales Police in each of the last four years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The 2019/20 police funding settlement provides the biggest increase in police funding since 2010, with more money for local police forces, counter terrorism and tackling serious and organised crime.

Total funding is increasing by over £1 billion in 2019/20, including council tax, extra funding for pensions costs, and the serious violence fund.

Each Police and Crime Commissioner receives the same percentage change in core grant funding each year.

Core grant funding figures are published each year in the annual police funding settlement: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/police-finance

Figures for the years 2015/16 to 2018/19 are also published in a statistics publication on police funding here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-funding-for-england-and-wales-2015-to-2019
The North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner’s (PCC) total funding is £155.8 million in 2019/20, an increase of £9.4 million compared to 2018/19.

23 May 2019, 11:12 a.m. Horses: Animal Welfare Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure horse owners comply with his Department's tethering guidelines.

Answer (David Rutley)

Following representations from some equine bodies, I will be meeting a number of groups, including the British Horse Council who coordinate the views of the sector, to discuss the issue of tethering. Information on how to tether a horse is contained within the statutory Code of Practice for the Welfare of Horses, Ponies, Donkeys and Their Hybrids, which sets out guidance to keepers on how to provide for the welfare needs of their equidae, as required by the Animal Welfare Act 2006. The RSPCA, World Horse Welfare and local authority inspectors carry copies of the Code of Practice with them when called out to investigate complaints about the welfare of horses. They inform owners, by referring to the relevant part of the code, how to care for their animals including in relation to tethering.

16 May 2019, 4:47 p.m. Cabinet Office: Retirement Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what support his Department provides to staff in his Department (a) in their transition to retirement and (b) to (i) maintain and (ii) increase the physical and mental wellbeing staff planning for retirement.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The Cabinet Office has a retirement policy on how employees should prepare for
retirement. It also provides pensions awareness sessions, supported by a member help
centre which is run by MyCSP, and plans to run financial education sessions in November
2019

The Cabinet Office wellbeing action plan enables support for all staff, including those near
retirement. A number of key initiatives which support people transitioning to retirement
include: running leadership wellbeing training for all Senior Civil Servants, updating line
manager training to ensure wellbeing is included in all conversations, embedding wellbeing
into the Senior Civil Service leadership objective and including wellbeing in performance
management monthly conversation tools

There are a number of support services available in Cabinet Office that provide support or
advice to all employees, and would be of benefit to those nearing retirement. These
include the Cabinet Office alumni network, the Cabinet Office listening service and the
employee assistance programme

Civil Service Learning also offers learning opportunities for all Civil Servants planning for
retirement, including a day-long workshop on this subject.

16 May 2019, 12:31 p.m. Treasury: Retirement Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what support his Department provides to staff in his Department (a) in their transition to retirement and (b) to (i) maintain and (ii) increase the physical and mental wellbeing staff planning for retirement.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

In their transition to retirement staff are invited to attend a Civil Service pre-retirement course focusing on many topics including wellbeing, activities, pension and other finances. They also have access to an Employee Assistance Programme free of charge that can provide information and support relating to retirement including preparation, change, relationships, staying active, benefit entitlement and wills. They may also be able to take partial retirement in order to reduce their working hours and ease them into retirement.

HM Treasury encourages staff throughout their careers to maintain good physical and mental wellbeing and work life balance. Much information, support and activities are available to them including:

  • Mental health awareness training;
  • Various Networks including a Mental Wellbeing Network and an Age Network that champions older workers;
  • Occupational Health (providing information on healthy lifestyle and eating);
  • On-site gym and activity classes;
  • Sports and Social Club offering a wide variety of sport activities that can be accessed following retirement.

HM Treasury also encourages volunteering that can continue into retirement, which can give those approaching retirement a sense of purpose going forward.

16 May 2019, 11:24 a.m. Department of Health and Social Care: Retirement Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what support his Department provides to staff in his Department (a) in their transition to retirement and (b) to (i) maintain and (ii) increase the physical and mental wellbeing staff planning for retirement.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

Departmental support for staff transitioning into retirement includes a Pre Retirement learning event, provided via Civil Service Learning, which raises awareness of available information and resources, supports proactive planning for making the most of retirement and awareness of how to claim Civil Service and state pensions.

All staff in the Department who are part of the Civil Service Pension Scheme, have access to MyCSP, the Civil Service pension provider, which provides online resources and tools, such as the Retirement Modeller and a Pension Portal and also provides individual pension advice over the phone.

The Department also offers and wherever possible, supports staff requests for partial retirement to support individual needs and also as a transition to future retirement.

14 May 2019, 4:52 p.m. Funerals: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what recent discussions he has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues, (b) Welsh Government ministers and (c) Scottish Government ministers on the implementation of the children's funeral fund in England.

Answer (Edward Argar)


I have had discussions on implementation of the Children’s Funeral Fund with the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Family Support, Housing and Child Maintenance and the Minister of State for Immigration. I have not had discussions with Welsh or Scottish Government ministers. However, Ministry of Justice officials have had detailed discussions with officials in these Administrations.

9 May 2019, 5:07 p.m. Ministry of Justice: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

The number of staff seconded to either a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last 3 years is as follows:

Department for Exiting the European Union

2019 – 1

2018 – 0

2017 – 0

Department for International Trade

2019 – 0

2018 – 0

2017 - 0

9 May 2019, 4:02 p.m. Opiates: Prescriptions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 2 May 2019 to Question 248592 on Opiates: Prescriptions, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of her Department centrally recording information on the prevalence of opioid prescriptions,

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

We have made no such assessment. Prescription information is taken from the Prescription Cost Analysis system, as supplied by NHS Digital, and is based on a full analysis of all prescriptions dispensed in the community. The data is not collected on a local authority basis.

9 May 2019, 3:39 p.m. Social Mobility Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the dates on which he has met with ministers or officials from the (a) Department for Work and Pensions, and (b) Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy on the Opportunity Areas Programme in the last two years; and what the outcomes of each of those meetings were.

Answer (Anne Milton)

My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education met my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions on 27 March 2019 to discuss the progress of the Opportunity Areas programme, amongst other matters. Across our 12 Opportunity Areas, the department is enabling a range of partners including Local Enterprise Partnerships, through work with the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, job centres, and through work with the Department for Work and Pensions, to help teachers remove barriers to learning and boost aspiration, for the most disadvantaged pupils and parents.

9 May 2019, 3:36 p.m. Pension Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 15 April 2019 to Question 243355 on Pension Credit, for what reason information on Departmental budgets for promoting pension credit take-up rates are unavailable; and if she will make a statement.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The DWP uses a wide variety of different channels and partners to communicate information about Pension Credit and other welfare entitlements to potential and existing customers. Specific information on how much is spent on increasing take-up rates for Pension Credit is not available. I also refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave on 29 April 2019 to Question UIN 246944.

9 May 2019, 3:12 p.m. Ministry of Defence: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many civil servants in her Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Mr Tobias Ellwood)

The number of Ministry of Defence civil servants loaned to the Department for Exiting the European Union and the Department for International Trade in the last three years is shown below:

Year

Department for Exiting the EU

Department for International Trade

2016

~

~

2017

10

~

2018

~

~

2019

~

~

In line with Departmental policy ~ represents five or fewer, values have been rounded to the nearest five.

9 May 2019, 3:11 p.m. Pension Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 30 April 2018 to Question 247596, what assessment he has made of the factors influencing the decline in views of the Pension Credit toolkit: landing page from 2014 to 2018.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The Pension Credit toolkit is an on-line tool aimed at agencies and welfare rights organisations to help them encourage Pension Credit take-up. The toolkit landing page can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pension-credit-toolkit

The advice and guidance for stakeholders toolkit page can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pension-credit-toolkit/pension-credit-toolkit-advice-and-guidance-for-stakeholders

An assessment of the viewings of these web pages has not been undertaken.

9 May 2019, 3:08 p.m. Treasury: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

The number of people loaned to each of these two departments in the last three years can be found in the following table:

Department

April 2016 to March 2017

April 2017 to March 2018

April 2018 to March 2019

DExEU

17

14

16

DIT

7

0

0

9 May 2019, 2:36 p.m. Opiates: Prescriptions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many investigations relating to the over-prescription of opioids have been undertaken by the Care Quality Commission in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) does not undertake investigations relating to the over-prescription of controlled drugs. The CQC looks at the arrangements for controlled drugs as well as all other medicines as part of its inspection process. This can include prescribing, particularly where concerns have been raised. This information is then published as part of the CQC’s inspection report.

As well as following up regarding controlled drug prescribing at an individual service level, the CQC also reports on national prescribing trends through its controlled drugs annual report to the Government, these reports are publicly available on its website.

9 May 2019, 1:56 p.m. Department of Health and Social Care: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

Overall, there have been four secondments to the Department for International Trade and 11 to the Department for Exiting the European Union. A full break down by year for the past three years is below.

Year

Department for International Trade

Department for Exiting the European Union

2016

0

5

2017

1

4

2018

3

1

2019

0

1

9 May 2019, 1:12 p.m. Opiates: Death Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many death certificates contained references to opioids in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

9 May 2019, 9:46 a.m. Children: Day Care Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the number of childcare workers in receipt of (a) tax credits and (b) universal credit.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

9 May 2019, 9:46 a.m. Employment: Disability Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the percentage of employed individuals with long-term disablities who are employed in (a) higher managerial, administrative and professional occupations and (b) routine occupations.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

9 May 2019, 9:44 a.m. Cabinet Office: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to a) DexEU, and b) DiT in each of the last 3 years

Answer (Sir David Lidington)

The number of civil servants seconded/loaned to a) the Department for Exiting the European Union from my Department in each of the last three years is shown in the table below:

2016

2017

2018

2019 to date

51

34

43

27

No civil servants were seconded/loaned to b) the Department for International Trade from my Department in any of the last three years.

EU Exit is an all-of-government operation. DExEU, who share the Cabinet Office HR system, do not employ permanent staff. All civil service staff are loaned from other Government Departments or on fixed-term contracts. The Department for Exiting the European Union is responsible for overseeing negotiations to leave the EU and establishing the future relationship between the UK and EU. The Department for International trade works to secure UK and global prosperity by promoting and financing international trade and investment, and championing free trade.

Departments continually review workforce plans, reprioritise and assess changing needs, which includes identification and cessation of non-priority work where appropriate. We have accelerated our plans, and at the same time, the Civil Service as a whole is working to ensure that EU Exit Implementation is carried out to high quality without impacting public service delivery across the whole of government.

9 May 2019, 8:58 a.m. Railways: Per Capita Costs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent estimate he has made of the average price-per-mile to consumers for rail travel in each (a) nation and region of the UK and (b) rail franchise.

Answer (Andrew Jones)

The Office of Rail and Road publishes information on passenger income per passenger kilometre in UK Rail Industry Financial Information 2017-18. Passenger income refers to income received by franchised train operators from passengers through ticket sales but does not include other passenger income from catering and car parks.

The following table sets out passenger income per passenger kilometre for the nations of Great Britain in 2017-18. Figures for Northern Ireland and the regions are unavailable:

England

Scotland

Wales

GB total

Passenger income per passenger km (£s)

0.15

0.10

0.14

0.15

The following table sets out passenger income per passenger kilometre for each rail
franchise in Great Britain in 2017-18:

Passenger income per passenger km (£s)

Essex Thameside

0.14

Chiltern

0.13

Cross Country

0.14

East Coast

0.14

East Midlands

0.16

East Anglia

0.16

Great Western

0.16

Northern

0.12

South Eastern

0.17

South Western

0.15

Thameslink, Southern & Great Northern

0.17

TransPennine Express

0.12

Wales & Borders

0.12

West Coast

0.15

West Midlands

0.12

London Overground

0.17

Merseyrail Electrics

0.08

ScotRail

0.12

TfL Rail

0.16

Caledonian Sleeper

0.12

GB total

0.15

8 May 2019, 4:04 p.m. Department for Transport: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Jesse Norman)

The information requested for all three years can only be provided at disproportionate cost.

However, of the information that is more readily available, the Central Department and its Executive Agencies does hold information for the previous year which is as follows:

Department for Exiting the European Union (DExEU)

Department for International Trade (DIT)

1 April 2018 – 31 March 2019

7

5 or fewer

8 May 2019, 3:37 p.m. Department for International Development: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Harriett Baldwin)

The below table details the number of DFID staff who have been seconded to the Department for Exiting the European Union and the Department for International Trade in each of the last three financial years.

OGD

2016/17

2017/18

2018/19

DEXEU

3

1

28

DIT

4

5

26

Total

7

6

54

8 May 2019, 2:55 p.m. Developing Countries: Vaccination Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of her Department's spending on improving global vaccination rates in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Harriett Baldwin)

Vaccination represents one of the most cost-effective health interventions. The UK is a global leader in ensuring children across the world benefit from the life-saving power of one of humankind’s greatest achievements. For every US$1 spent on immunisation in the world’s lowest-income countries, there is an estimated saving of US$16; from reduced health care costs for the individual and from the resulting increase in that individual’s contribution to the economy and to society.

Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (DTP) vaccination rates are a key indicator of immunisation performance. Through UK support to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, DPT vaccination rates in the world’s poorest countries have now increased from 66% in 2000 to 80% in 2017. These efforts have helped vaccinate over 700 million children, saving over 10 million lives against vaccine-preventable diseases. The UK will not rest on its laurels. The UK will host the Gavi replenishment conference in 2020 where we will lead efforts to drive even greater vaccination coverage; including for children in the most fragile, hardest to reach countries.

8 May 2019, 2:04 p.m. Vaccination: Disinformation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to tackle the misinformation on vaccination on digital and social media platforms.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Romford (Andrew Rosindell MP) on 26 March 2019 Question 233488.

We want to ensure that parents have the right information when making important choices such as vaccinations for their children – as well as for people of all ages eligible for vaccines against diseases such as meningitis and shingles. The Department is working with Public Health England to help remind people about the dreadful diseases vaccines protect against.

We have also been in discussion with major social media companies such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram about the issue of misinformation and proliferation of harmful content and its impact on people’s mental health, holding a summit on Monday 28 April, where vaccines were also raised. We intend to follow this with another meeting in the summer.

8 May 2019, 2 p.m. Preventive Medicine Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to publish the prevention is better than a cure Green Paper; and whether that Green Paper will include provisions to improve vaccination rates in the UK.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

Last November, we published ‘Prevention is Better than Cure’; the Government vision on prevention. This set out a clear Government position on why prevention matters, and the role we all have to play in living healthier, happier lives. This year, we will publish a prevention Green Paper, setting out our plans in greater detail; drawing from evidence on the main causes of ill-health and disability.

8 May 2019, 2 p.m. Vaccination: Disinformation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on the sharing of misinformation about vaccines on digital and social media platforms.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

We take the matter of misinformation about vaccines very seriously. That is why we are working with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and media companies, as outlined in the Online Harms White Paper, as part of wider work in challenging online misinformation

8 May 2019, 1:02 p.m. Bus Services: Per Capita Costs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent estimate he has made of the average price-per-mile for bus travel in (a) each region of the UK and (b) each bus franchise operating in the UK.

Answer (Ms Nusrat Ghani)

The Department has not made a recent assessment of the average price per mile for bus travel. The bus market outside London is deregulated and decisions regarding setting the level of fares, is primarily a commercial matter for bus operators.

Bus Open Data powers in the Bus Services Act 2017 will require bus operators in England to open up route and timetable, fares and tickets and real time information for passengers from 2020. These improvements aim to remove uncertainty in bus journeys, improve journey planning and help passengers secure best value tickets.

8 May 2019, 11:57 a.m. Northern Ireland Office: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, how many civil servants in her Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (John Penrose)

There have been no civil servants seconded from the Northern Ireland Office to either the Department for Exiting the European Union or the Department for International Trade, in each of the last three years.

7 May 2019, 4:47 p.m. Opiates: Misuse Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 30 April 2019 to Question 247598, on opioids: misuse, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of monitoring dependence and addiction rates in relation to commonly prescribed opioids; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

No assessment has been made of the potential merits of monitoring dependence and addiction rates in relation to commonly prescribed opioids.

Public Health England is undertaking a public health evidence review of available data and published evidence on the problems associated with some prescribed medicines, including dependence and withdrawal, including opioids. The review is due to report in summer 2019.

7 May 2019, 4:20 p.m. Adult Education: Admissions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of trends in the number of students enrolling in adult education in each year since 2010.

Answer (Anne Milton)

We recognise that participation in adult (19+) further education has decreased. The latest full year statistics are published on GOV.UK here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/further-education-and-skills-statistical-first-release-sfr.

We are considering adult skills more widely as a department and will therefore be considering trends in the take-up of adult education as part of this. In addition, we are looking carefully at further education funding in preparation for the Spending Review. We are considering how effective our funding and regulatory structures are in supporting high quality provision, and in line with the aims of the Post-18 Review, to ensure a coherent vision for further and higher education.

7 May 2019, 3:47 p.m. Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Jake Berry)

No staff from this department have been seconded to the Department for Exiting the European Union or the Department for International Trade during the last three years.

There have been eighteen outward loans to the departments in question during the last three years as shown in the table below.

Number of outward loans by host department and the year commenced

2016/17

2017/18

2018/19

Total

Department for Exiting the European Union

3

11

1

15

Department for International Trade

0

3

0

3

Total

3

14

1

18

7 May 2019, 3:26 p.m. Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Andrew Stephenson)

BEIS does not hold centrally the records of every Department loaned staff have joined. However, according to reports from BEIS’ two Shared Services providers during this period, the total number of BEIS staff loaned out in each year is as follows:

2016 – 47

2017 – 53

2018 – 48

2019 – 27

This data only reflects the loans fully recorded on Shared Services and so may not reflect all loans out of the Department.

7 May 2019, 3:20 p.m. Department for International Development: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, pursuant to the Answer of 29 April 2019 to Question 245944, on Department for International Development, Wales, how many companies based in each region and nation of the UK secured contracts from her Department in (a) 2017-18 and (b) 2018-19; and what the value of each contract was.

Answer (Harriett Baldwin)

In 2017-2018, 95% of awarded contracts were to companies based in England with 5% going to companies based in Scotland. In 2018-19, 97% of awarded contracts were to companies based in England with 3% going to companies based in Scotland.

DFID is undertaking a schedule of regional Open for Business events across the country to help local businesses make the most of opportunities to deliver UK aid. Last year we held ‘Open for Business’ events in Birmingham, Leeds, London and Cardiff, Belfast, Newcastle and Edinburgh which were attended by over 600 business people. These events are an opportunity for two-way communication to encourage companies to compete for DFID business to share their vital skills and expertise and understand the simplified process for contract applications.

7 May 2019, 3:19 p.m. Department for International Development: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, pursuant to the Answer of 29 April 2019 to Question 245944 on Department for International Development: Wales, how many organisations based in Wales bid for (a) contracts and (b) grants from her Department in the 2018-19 fiscal year.

Answer (Harriett Baldwin)

In 2018-19, two companies registered in Wales bid for DFID’s International Multi-Disciplinary Programme (IMDP) framework contract.

DFID is undertaking a schedule of regional Open for Business events across the country to help local businesses make the most of opportunities to deliver UK aid. An Open for Business event took place in Cardiff last year and was attended by 52 Welsh companies. These events are an opportunity for two-way communication to encourage companies to compete for DFID business to share their vital skills and expertise and understand the simplified process for contract applications.

7 May 2019, 10:50 a.m. Wales Office: Secondment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many civil servants in his Department have been seconded to (a) the Department for Exiting the European Union and (b) the Department for International Trade in each of the last three years.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

None.

7 May 2019, 10:49 a.m. Wales Office: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many companies based in (a) Wales, (b) the UK, (c) the EU and (d) the rest of the world had contracts or grants awarded by his Department in each of the last three years; and what the value of those contracts or grants was.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales does not issue contracts directly. The Office buys goods and services under Government frameworks agreements and receives procurement services from the Ministry of Justice. The Office has not awarded any grants.

3 May 2019, 1:20 p.m. Opiates: Prescriptions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will place in the library a copy of the definition his Department uses for the term discontinuation syndrome in relation to opioid prescriptions as used by Public Health England.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

Public Health England (PHE) has not used the term ‘discontinuation syndrome’ to refer to opioid dependence. The term was used in the early stages of the Prescribed Medicines Review in relation to antidepressant medication as that was the only term recognised by some stakeholders at the time the review started.

PHE’s final report on the review will clarify the use of the term. This is due to be published in summer 2019.

2 May 2019, 3:42 p.m. Opiates: Prescriptions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the level of opioid prescription rates per 100,000 people in each local authority area in England in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

Information is not available in the format requested.

2 May 2019, 3:10 p.m. Pension Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 15 April 2019 to Question 243355 on Pension Credit, how many times was the online pension credit toolkit accessed in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The Pension Credit toolkit is an on-line tool aimed at agencies and welfare rights organisations to help them encourage Pension Credit take-up. It can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pension-credit-toolkit

The toolkit contains resources for anyone working with pensioners and includes guides to Pension Credit. It also contains publicity material and guidance designed to help older people understand how they could get Pension Credit and help organisations support someone applying for Pension Credit as well as ideas for encouraging take-up. The toolkit also provides links to information about disability and carers benefits.

The Information available on the number of times the Pension Credit toolkit was accessed is in the table below. This includes data on the number of viewings of the Pension Credit overview page on www.gov.uk which is considered the most likely initial starting point for the public obtaining on line information about Pension Credit.

Page views

Page

2019 to 25 April

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

Pension Credit toolkit: landing page

1,466

2,078

3,399

4,133

4,527

12,909

Pension Credit toolkit: advice and guidance for stakeholders

5,791

9,884

18,336

21,363

27,644

10,755

Pension Credit guidance for customers overview page

406,024

1,134,852

1,307,562

1,412,375

1,318,770

1,306,531

Notes:

1. Data is for calendar years

2. Data refers to the following webpages

3. Data shows the number of times these webpages were accessed.

2 May 2019, 2:03 p.m. Social Services Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to his oral contribution of 7 January 2019, Official Report, column 69, for what reasons the Social Care Green Paper was not published before April 2019; and what his Department's timescale is for the publication of that document.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The Green Paper remains a priority for the Government and will address a longstanding policy problem. The Green Paper will be published at the earliest opportunity.

30 Apr 2019, 3:41 p.m. Mental Illness: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the prevalence of diagnosed mental health conditions in children in each National Statistics socio-economic classication in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The most recent prevalence survey of children and young people was commissioned by the Department. It took place in 2017 and was published by NHS Digital in November 2018. This information is not collected annually and the previous survey was published in 2004.

The survey looked at the extent of mental ill health in the 5-19 year old population and considered a range of demographic, socioeconomic, relationship, and health-related characteristics. It did not use National Statistics Socioeconomic classifications.

NHS Digital made an assessment of the 2017 survey, in ‘Mental Health of Children and Young People in England, Trends and characteristics’, which reported on associated demographic factors, including family functioning, household income, receipt of benefits, and neighbourhood deprivation. This is available at the following link:

https://files.digital.nhs.uk/A0/273EE3/MHCYP%202017%20Trends%20Characteristics.pdf

This assessment of the survey reported that living in a low-income household or with a parent in receipt of income-related benefits was associated with higher rates of mental disorder in children.

30 Apr 2019, 1:43 p.m. Opiates: Misuse Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the addiction rates of the 10 most commonly prescribed opioid drugs in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

No estimate has been made of the addiction rates of the 10 most commonly prescribed opioid drugs in each of the last 10 years.

30 Apr 2019, 12:34 p.m. Pension Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate he has made of the number of times the online pensioner toolkit was accessed in each of the last six years.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The Pension Credit toolkit is an on-line tool aimed at agencies and welfare rights organisations to help them encourage Pension Credit take-up. It can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pension-credit-toolkit

The toolkit contains resources for anyone working with pensioners and includes guides to Pension Credit. It also contains publicity material and guidance designed to help older people understand how they could get Pension Credit and help organisations support someone applying for Pension Credit as well as ideas for encouraging take-up. The toolkit also provides links to information about disability and carers benefits.

Information available on the number of times the Pension Credit toolkit was accessed is in the table below. For comparative purposes it includes data on the number of viewings of the Pension Credit overview page on GOV.UK, which is considered the most likely initial starting point for the public obtaining on line information about Pension Credit.

Page views

Page

2019 to 25 April

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

Pension Credit toolkit: landing page

1,466

2,078

3,399

4,133

4,527

12,909

Pension Credit toolkit: advice and guidance for stakeholders

5,791

9,884

18,336

21,363

27,644

10,755

Pension Credit guidance for customers overview page

406,024

1,134,852

1,307,562

1,412,375

1,318,770

1,306,531

Notes:

1. Data is for calendar years

2. Data refers to the following webpages

3. Data shows the number of times these webpages were accessed.

29 Apr 2019, 4:45 p.m. Council Tax: Non-payment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number of people who have served custodial sentences due to non-payment of council tax in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The number of people admitted to prison for non-payment of council tax to December 2018 can be viewed in Table A2.12 at the link below:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/796916/receptions-2018.ods

29 Apr 2019, 4:22 p.m. Pension Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 15 April 2019 to Question 243355, what assessment he has made of the merits of a formal policy monitoring spending aimed at increasing take-up rates of pension credit.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

Since 2010, the DWP have increased the annual level of the basic State Pension by £1,450. In 2018/19 we will spend £121.5 billion on benefits for pensioners and by 2023/24 this rises to £143.5 billion. The DWP's policy and essential information to a broad range of customers and other key audiences and provides services to around 22 million people either directly or using a multitude of partners from the third sector. Given that the DWP uses a variety of different channels to communicate information about Pension Credit to potential customers, there are no plans to change the existing arrangements beyond monitoring actual Pension Credit expenditure and the amount of Pension Credit that goes unclaimed. However, the DWP does monitor the take-up of income related benefits, including Pension Credit.

29 Apr 2019, 4:19 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: Sick Leave Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the number of work days lost due to absence and absenteeism as a result of (a) stress, (b) anxiety and (c) depression in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

29 Apr 2019, 4:17 p.m. Infant Mortality Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the child infant mortality rate in each National Statistics socio-economic classification category in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Kevin Foster)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

29 Apr 2019, 2:30 p.m. Opiates: Misuse Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress Public Health England has made on its pledge to review the use of the phrase discontinuation syndrome as a means of describing opioid dependence.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

Public Health England (PHE) has not used the term ‘discontinuation syndrome’ to refer to opioid dependence. The term was used in the early stages of the Prescribed Medicines Review in relation to antidepressant medication as that was the only term recognised by some stakeholders at the time the review started.

PHE did agree to review the use of the term and has done so. It persists in some older review documents but is not being included in current documents. Information and documents on the review are published at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/prescribed-medicines-an-evidence-review

29 Apr 2019, 2:27 p.m. Prescription Drugs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to publish Public Health England's Prescribed medicines: an evidence review.

Answer (Seema Kennedy)

Public Health England plans to publish ‘prescribed medicines: an evidence review’ in summer 2019.

29 Apr 2019, 2:07 p.m. Sick Leave: Mental Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the effect on the economy of employment absences and absenteeism as a result of (a) stress, (b) anxiety and (c) depression in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Will Quince)

Analysis in the independent review, “Thriving at Work, The Stevenson/Farmer Review of Mental Health and Employers”, published in October 2017, indicates a cost to the economy of mental health related employment absences and absenteeism of £49.1 to £64.5 billion per annum. This includes £37.0 to £52.4 billion costs of lost output due to worklessness, £8.8 billion costs of absenteeism of employees and the self-employed, and £3.3 billion NHS costs. Costs are not available by condition or by year.

29 Apr 2019, 1:48 p.m. Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he made of the prevalance of diagnosed mental health conditions in each National Statistics socio-economics classification category in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

Public Health England assessed the prevalence of common mental health disorders in the population by age group, sex and deprivation quintile. Estimates are based on data from the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey, a survey of mental health problems taken every seven years and last undertaken in 2014.

Estimates show an increase of common mental disorders in men and women with increasing deprivation, across all age groups (16-24, 25-65 and 65 and over).

The analysis by Public Health England is published by NHS Digital and can be viewed at the following link:

https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/find-data-and-publications/supplementary-information/2019-supplementary-information-files/supplementary-analysis-of-prevalence-of-common-mental-health-disorders-by-age-group-gender-and-deprivation

29 Apr 2019, 11:46 a.m. Unemployment: Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the unemployment rate of people with diagnosed mental health conditions in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The requested information is not held by the Department and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

29 Apr 2019, 10:07 a.m. Mental Health Services Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of trends in the level of prescription rates of (a) mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and (b) anti-depressants as a means to treat and prevent mental ill health.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

Data on prescribing mindfulness-based cognitive therapy is not collected. However, NHS England reports that the number of people accessing psychological therapies is rising, with 1.01 million people starting treatment in 2017-18.

NHS Digital published data in March 2019 which indicated that the levels of prescriptions for antidepressants has risen in recent years.

It is important that increasing numbers of antidepressant prescriptions are not automatically seen as a bad thing, as research has shown they can be very effective drugs when used appropriately.

It is the responsibility of all prescribers to prescribe responsibly and appropriately, to meet the individual needs of their patients. There is a place for both drugs and psychological therapies in the treatment of mental health conditions.

4 Apr 2019, 4:39 p.m. Probation: Private Sector Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how much his Department spent on contracts with private probation service providers in each (a) nation and (b) region of the UK in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The spend data below is the total spend by HM Probation and Prison Services to the Community Rehabilitation Companies in England and Wales for the years shown.

2015/16

£528,700,000*

2016/17

£394,100,000*

2017/18

£373,300,000*

Figures for 2018/19 have not been ratified and as such are not currently available.

*Figures rounded up to the nearest £100,000

The MoJ does not hold this information for Scotland or Northern Ireland as probation services are devolved.

4 Apr 2019, 3:27 p.m. Detention Centres: Minimum Wage Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the merits of revising policies which exempt detention centres from minimum wage legislation.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

Individuals detained in immigration removal centres are exempt from national minimum wage requirements by virtue of section 153A of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 and section 45B of the National Minimum Wage Act 1998. There are no current plans to change the law.

2 Apr 2019, 4:07 p.m. Life Expectancy: Females Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with (a) the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and (b) other Cabinet colleagues on trends in female life expectancy.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

My Rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care regularly engages with colleagues on matters of common concern.

1 Apr 2019, 4:50 p.m. Opiates Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will list the name and manufacturer of the opioids approved by NICE; and the number of prescriptions for each of those drugs in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has published technology appraisal guidance recommending the use of methadone and buprenorphine for the management of opioid dependence. As this was a multiple technology appraisal, multiple companies were involved - MSD Ltd, Martindale Pharmaceuticals, Mylan, Rosemont Pharmaceuticals, and Thornton and Ross Ltd.

The Department does not hold data on the number of opioid prescriptions. However, NHS Digital holds data based on prescriptions written in the United Kingdom and dispensed in the community in England. This data is available as prescription item level data by presentation for opioid analgesics as listed in the British National Formulary (BNF), which is attached. We do not hold data which identifies the manufacturer of each item dispensed.

There is no central National Health Service collection of information on medicines issued and used in NHS hospitals in England.

1 Apr 2019, 4:16 p.m. Department for Transport: Ministerial Powers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many ministerial directions have been issued by Ministers in his Department in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Jesse Norman)

In the last eight years, ministers have issued the following number of ministerial directions:

Year

Number of ministerial directions issued

2015

2

2016

1

2017

1

1 Apr 2019, 3:50 p.m. Social Security Benefits Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will make it her policy to restore inflation-linked up-rating to working age social security benefits.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016 froze the majority of working-age benefits for four tax years from 2016-17.

The relevant provisions will lapse in 2020 and the pre-existing statutory arrangements will come back into force.

1 Apr 2019, 3:19 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: Departmental Responsibilities Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Prime Minister, when she plans to name a new Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work.

Answer (Mrs Theresa May)

The appointment will be announced in the usual way

1 Apr 2019, 2:01 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of social security benefit recipients who will be transferred to universal credit in each local authority area of Wales in each year from 2019 to 2023.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Forecasts for Universal Credit below national level are not available. However, our latest estimates following the Spring Statement 2019 indicate that nationally 4.3 million claimants will move to Universal Credit from legacy benefits in total. Of these:

1.8 million claimants will move to Universal Credit by the Department and

2.5 million will be as a result of a change of circumstances

1 Apr 2019, 12:28 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: Written Questions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when she plans to answer Question 209292 asked on 16 January 2019 by the hon Member. for Vale of Clwyd.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

I replied to the hon. Member’s Question on 28th March 2019.

1 Apr 2019, 10:39 a.m. Stronger Towns Fund: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what estimate he has made of the Barnett consequentials for Wales of the Stronger Towns Fund.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

The UK Government will seek to ensure that towns in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland can benefit from the Stronger Towns Fund and we will announce further details in due course.

1 Apr 2019, 10:21 a.m. Elections: Advertising Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the Government's budget is for advertising on (a) social and (b) other media to increase people's awareness of voter registration deadlines for forthcoming local elections.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The Electoral Commission (EC) has a statutory responsibility to promote awareness of elections, including registration. In this capacity the EC leads public awareness campaigns on voter registration, notably ahead of elections.

The Government works in partnership with the EC to coordinate cross-government support for these campaigns. This includes sharing public awareness campaign materials through government social media accounts, such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as wider networks. The Government, however, does not have an allocated budget for advertising voter registration deadlines.

28 Mar 2019, 5:53 p.m. Employment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the proportion of employment growth which can be attributed to (a) agency work, (b) self-employment and (c) zero-hours contracts in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Data from the independent Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that since the 2010 election employment has grown, by over 3.6 million, to a record high of 32.714 million. Over 75% of this has come from full-time, permanent employment. And over 75% of the growth since 2010 has come from higher-skilled occupations, which generally command higher wages.

The latest ONS data shows that agency temporary workers represent 1.0% of people in employment.

Self-employed people make up 14.8% of people in employment – up 1.3% points from when comparable records began in 1992.

In October-December 2018 2.6% people in employment had a zero hours’ contract – down from 2.8% the previous year.

Alongside this answer we provide a table showing the requested trends in different forms of employment. The following points should be noted:

  • The ONS publish some of the requested data only in quarterly rather annual format. Annual comparisons are made using quarterly data.
  • In some years it is not possible to provide the proportion of net employment growth, as employment in the requested categories of employment fell. For consistency we therefore only provide the net changes in employment levels.

Data on the numbers of people working in agency temping jobs is available quarterly. Oct-Dec 2018 is the most recent data; therefore, this quarter has been used to calculate the requested change on year.

Change on year in agency temping level

Change on year in employment level

Oct-Dec 2011

36,831

17,604

Oct-Dec 2012

12,019

565,759

Oct-Dec 2013

-12,604

382,666

Oct-Dec 2014

26,361

653,578

Oct-Dec 2015

15,570

595,671

Oct-Dec 2016

-19,207

305,424

Oct-Dec 2017

-26,884

308,505

Oct-Dec 2018

19,854

443,687

Data on the numbers in self-employment is quarterly. Nov-Jan 2019 is the most recent data, therefore this quarter has been used to calculate for the change on year.

Change on year in self-employment level

Change on year in employment level

Nov-Jan 2012

102,251

-44,853

Nov-Jan 2013

79,384

544,571

NovJan 2014

294,505

437,994

Nov-Jan 2015

40,775

674,611

Nov-Jan 2016

120,358

537,415

Nov-Jan 2017

146,389

306,505

Nov-Jan 2018

-34,995

393,697

Nov-Jan 2019

65,138

472,665

Comparable zero hours contracts data is available annually until 2013, then for Apr-Jun and Oct-Dec each year thereafter. Apr-Jun 2018 is the most recent data; therefore, this quarter has been used for the change on year.

The figures in this analysis are calculated from responses to the Labour Force Survey (LFS). As part of the survey the LFS asks people in employment if their job has flexible working and if so to choose from a list of employment patterns those which best describe their situation. The number of people who are shown as on a zero-hours contract will therefore be affected by whether people know they are on a zero-hours contract and will be affected by how aware they are of the concept. The increased coverage of zero-hours in the latter half of 2013 may have affected the response to this question. Therefore, please do not compare data before 2014, with data from 2014 onwards.

Change on year in zero hours contracts level

Change on year in employment level

2011

22,514

107,000

2012

61,993

251,000

2013

333,033

255,000

Oct-Dec 2014

n/a

n/a

Oct-Dec 2015

104,959

595,671

Oct-Dec 2016

103,022

305,424

Oct-Dec 2017

-5,100

308,505

Oct-Dec 2018

-57,489

443,687

Apr-Jun 2014, the time period changes from annual to quarterly data, these are not directly comparable periods. It would also not be accurate to compare these periods, as ONS advise there was a rise in awareness of zero hours contracts in late 2013 which caused the numbers to rise.

28 Mar 2019, 5:30 p.m. Housing Benefit: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 22 March 2019 to Question 234158 on Public Sector: Pensions, what estimate she has made of the average amount of benefit payment not received per household in each local authority area in Wales as a result of the imposition of the benefit cap.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

Households can have their benefits capped either under Housing Benefit, or under Universal Credit. The latest statistics were published in February 2019, covering households capped to November 2018.

Under Housing Benefit, statistics on the number of households capped in the geographical areas requested by banded, weekly cap amount, is published and available at:

https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk (‘Benefit Cap’, ‘Point in Time caseload’ table). Guidance for users is available at:

https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Getting-Started.html

Under Universal Credit, statistics on the number of households capped by banded, weekly cap amount can be found in the February 2019 official statistics release (Table 9, https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/benefit-cap-number-of-households-capped-to-november-2018).

28 Mar 2019, 4:05 p.m. Pupil Exclusions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many exclusions per head of population there have been in each local authority area in each of the last nine years.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

The National Statistics release ‘Permanent and fixed-period exclusions in England 2016 to 2017’ includes information on the number and rate of permanent and fixed period exclusions. Exclusion rates are calculated as a percentage of the total headcount of the sole and dual main registered pupil population on roll as at January census day.

The full release is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/permanent-and-fixed-period-exclusions-in-england-2016-to-2017.

Information at a national level, by local authorities and by schools for each academic year from 2006/07 to 2016/17 is available in the Underlying data section of the release, in the file “national_region_la_school_data_exc1617.csv”.

The Department does not publish exclusion figures as a proportion of the total population. Population estimates at a local authority level are published by the Office for National Statistics, available here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/populationandmigration/populationestimates.

28 Mar 2019, 3:51 p.m. Knives: Death and Injuries Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which local authorities have had the highest incidence of knife-related (a) deaths and (b) injuries in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office collects data on (a) homicide and (b) assault with injury offences involving a knife or a sharp instrument recorded by the police in England and Wales at the Police Force Area only. It is not possible to disaggregate these data to a local authority level.

The most recently published information for offences involving knives or sharp instruments by Police Force Area is for the year to September 2018 and is available here:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/773074/prc-knife-open-data-march2009-onwards-tables.ods.

25 Mar 2019, 1:31 p.m. Mental Illness: Children and Young People Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to NHS Digital publication Mental Health of Children and Young People in England 2017, what assessment he has made of the factors influencing the upward trend of 5-15 year olds reporting at least one mental health disorder.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Mental Health of Children and Young People in England (2017) prevalence survey shows a slight rise in the prevalence of mental health conditions in children and young people, from 10.1% in 2004 to 11.2% in 2017.

Protecting the mental health of our children and young people is a top priority for this Government and is a core part of the NHS Long Term Plan. The recent Children and Young People’s Mental Health Green Paper aims to improve provision of mental health support for all children and young people, and the proposals are based on evidence of what we know is driving the rising demand for children and young people’s mental health services. We will test, monitor and evaluate the implementation of the core proposals to ensure we learn from what works.

25 Mar 2019, 11:53 a.m. Broadband: North Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 19 March 2019 to Question 232532 on Broadband: North Wales, what steps his Department is taking to monitor the progress of Local Full Fibre Networks Wave three projects in each quarter until March 2021.

Answer (Margot James)

As is the case with all of our Local Full Fibre Network (LFFN) projects, DCMS has assigned a Project Director to work with the Local Body project teams. The project will firstly be assured through the formal BDUK assurance process via a series of gateway review points. As the project progresses into delivery, this will be reviewed through weekly updates into the LFFN Programme Office on delivery progress, finances/grant claims, change management, and risks/issues - in line with the North Wales project consortia project plan. We use an online Portfolio Management system called Cora PPM to facilitate this. All of this is in line with our overall DCMS Governance model and includes reporting up from the LFFN Programme Board to the DCMS portfolio board which is chaired by our Permanent Secretary. Additionally LFFN is categorised as a Government Major Projects Portfolio (GMPP) Programme and is therefore monitored by the Infrastructure and Projects Authority (IPA).

25 Mar 2019, 11:50 a.m. Internet: Regulation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what the planned publication date is of the internet regulator White Paper.

Answer (Margot James)

The Government's White Paper on internet safety will be published in the coming weeks.

22 Mar 2019, 2:48 p.m. Chronic Illnesses Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the proportion of the population living with a limiting long term illness in (a) Denbighshire, (b) Wales and (c) the UK.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

22 Mar 2019, 2:26 p.m. Civil Service: Stress Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 18 March 2019 to Question 231901, whether he has made an assessment of the potential benefits of mindfulness-based interventions in the reduction of work-based stress.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The Civil Service does not collect data on the practice of mindfulness on the reduction of work-based stress and positive influence on well-being.

We are aware that mindfulness training can have a positive impact on wellbeing. Mindfulness interventions, including face-to-face sessions and digital wellbeing apps, are used across the Civil Service.

21 Mar 2019, 3:32 p.m. Visas: Overseas Students Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many prospective PhD students were (a) granted and (b) refused a visa to study in the UK in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

The available information relates to total Tier 4 visas granted and refused, published in the quarterly Immigration Statistics, Visas volume 1, table vi_01_q, latest edition a

t https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-december-2018/list-of-tables#visas.

For the calendar year 2018, 98% of cases were granted.


Corresponding information relating to the level of course is not available from centrally collated statistical databases.

21 Mar 2019, 2:55 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Medical Examinations Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the Written Statement of 5 March 2019, Health and Disability Announcement, HCWS1376, what the proposed (a) timescale and (b) location is for the no conditionality test.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department is finalising the design of the Proof of Concept and seeking input from key representatives from the sector. It is a small scale test which will be run in 2-4 jobcentres. We will use the Proof of Concept to test whether we can increase engagement with claimants through Work Coaches starting at no mandatory requirements and then tailoring conditionality up based on an individual’s circumstances.

21 Mar 2019, 10:10 a.m. Marine Protected Areas Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate he has made of the cost of enforcing marine protected areas per sq km in (a) the UK and (b) UK overseas territories in each of the last four years.

Answer (Dr Thérèse Coffey)

a) We do not currently hold the requested data, however, the Marine Management Organisation (MMO) estimates compliance costs for each Marine Protected Area (MPA) byelaw it makes. These estimates are documented in the impact assessment (IA) accompanying each byelaw, which are available on GOV.UK. These estimates include compliance activity such as monitoring and boardings to detect and deter offences, but do not include costs related to any prosecutions for offences committed. These figures relate to England only. There are additional costs arising from the enforcement of Inshore Fisheries Conservation Authorities (IFCA) byelaws but these are not currently centrally compiled.

b) Under the Blue Belt programme, £2 million per year over the past 4 years has been allocated to the MMO to support surveillance and enforcement of designated MPAs, and to support the development of legal frameworks and surveillance and enforcement strategies for further MPA designations.

At the start of the Blue Belt programme, there was 2.5 million km² of MPAs around the UK overseas territories and by 2020, there will be over 4 million km². Additional funding support for enforcement of Pitcairn Island was provided by Pew Charitable Trusts during years 2015-present.

6 Mar 2019, 5:12 p.m. Teachers: Training Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he has taken to ensure that (a) people on teacher training courses are trained in dealing with children with additional learning needs and (b) sufficient on-going training is offered to qualified teachers to ensure that an adequate level of training is maintained.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Initial teacher training (ITT) providers must design their courses to enable trainees to meet The Teachers’ Standards. These Standards set out the key elements of effective teaching and the minimum expectations for professional practice. In order to become a qualified teacher, trainees must satisfy the Standards, which include a requirement that they have a clear understanding of the needs of all pupils, and are able to use and evaluate distinctive teaching approaches to engage and support them.

The Department published the Framework of Core Content for ITT in July 2016 to further support effective training. The Framework advises that, “ITT providers should ensure Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) training is integrated across the ITT programme”. The Department is currently undertaking an audit of SEND provision across ITT providers, which it will use to produce a best practice guide.

On 28 January 2019, the Department published the Recruitment and Retention strategy and the Early Career Framework (ECF). The ECF provides a two-year improved support package for newly qualified teachers, providing them with support they need to help all pupils succeed and widen access for all - including pupils identified within the four areas of need set out in the SEND code of practice.

Schools and headteachers are best placed to make specific decisions about how to support and improve their teachers, but the Department is assisting schools with this through the national network of teaching schools and the Standard for Teachers’ Professional Development.

6 Mar 2019, 5:10 p.m. Pupils: Per Capita Costs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the average of real terms per pupil funding for 5-16 year olds in England in (a) 2000-2010, and (b) 2011-2018.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

School funding for 5-16 year olds is set to be more than 50% higher in 2020 than in 2000, and the core schools budget will be £43.5 billion by 2019/20.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) estimate that between 1999/00 and 2009/10, school spending grew by around 5% each year, in real terms per pupil. Funding was protected in real terms per pupil between 2010/11 and 2015/16. It was protected in real terms overall between 2015/16 and 2017/18. The Department is committed to protecting funding in real terms per pupil between across 2018/19 and 2019/20, following an additional £1.3 billion in July 2017, over and above plans set out at the 2015 Spending Review.

4 Mar 2019, 5:26 p.m. Urban Areas Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of a comprehensive review of the town centre first policy.

Answer (Kit Malthouse)

The town centre first policy approach has been in place for two decades and has helped to give confidence to many town centre regeneration projects across the country.

The revised National Planning Policy Framework, which was published last year, reaffirms our commitment to the town centre first approach by stating that main town centre uses should, where possible, be located in town centres.

4 Mar 2019, 5:16 p.m. Home Shopping: Taxation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of a online sales tax.

Answer (Mel Stride)

I recently discussed the merits of an online sales tax in evidence to a joint session of the House of Commons Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee and Treasury Select Committee, to inform an inquiry into High streets and town centres in 2030.

This evidence is available at the following link: http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/housing-communities-and-local-government-committee/high-streets-and-town-centres-in-2030/oral/94442.pdf

The government keeps all tax policy under review as part of the normal policy making process and will share any relevant announcements at the appropriate fiscal event.

4 Mar 2019, 2:58 p.m. Leisure: Young People Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the number of local authorities in England and Wales that have been unable to meet their statutory duty to provide user-led recreational leisure activities for young people in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Mims Davies)

My department is responsible for Section 507b of the 1996 Education Act that states that: “every local authority in England must, so far as reasonably practicable, secure for qualifying young persons in the authority’s area access to sufficient educational and recreational activities.”

During the last eight years no one has sought to make the case to me or my Department that any local authority is in formal breach of this duty. The guidance, which sets out how this this statutory duty could be discharged, has not been revised since 2012 and in the Civil Society Strategy published last August we committed to review it. We will make a further announcement about our plans to do that in due course.

4 Mar 2019, 2:36 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Fraud Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 25 February 2019 to Question 223480 on Social Security Benefits: Fraud, what estimate her Department has made of the cost to the public purse of recording that additional data.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

To provide a costing for adding this functionality the Department would need to analyse this change in more detail, assess the amount of effort required to develop and test it, review the priority against other work that is already committed to, and assess any potential impact it could have on current operational procedures. This assessment process is resource intensive; therefore the Department cannot justify the use of this resource as there is no business reason to add this functionality.

4 Mar 2019, 10:16 a.m. Personal Income Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the proportion changes in income for each income quintile from the financial year 2017 to financial year 2018.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

28 Feb 2019, 10:31 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the number of pending electors in each constituency in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

There is no single definition of a ‘pending elector’ in legislation or elsewhere. Any data on pending electors would therefore be defined and held at a local level. Given this, the Government is not able to make an estimate of the number of pending electors in each constituency.

26 Feb 2019, 2:27 p.m. Tyres: Recycling Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what due diligence his Department undertakes relating to used tire exports to India for recycling purposes.

Answer (Dr Thérèse Coffey)

The UK and India are both parties to the Basel Convention which provides the system for controlling movements of hazardous and other wastes between countries. It is fully implemented in UK law through Regulation (EC) 1013/2006 on the shipment of waste and the UK Transfrontier Shipment of Waste Regulations 2007. Under Regulation (EC) 1013/2006, most exports of non hazardous wastes destined for recycling to non-Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries are subject to light touch international export controls known as ‘green-list’ controls. The European Commission asks non-OECD countries, including India, to indicate where more stringent controls are required. India has indicated that exports of tyres from the UK can be exported under green-list controls and must also meet the requirements of Indian regulations.

The UK environmental regulators take an intelligence led approach to checking compliance with waste export regulations. They carry out proactive and intelligence led inspections to stop waste shipments that breach these regulations before they leave our ports. Where concerns are raised about a recycling facility in other countries, further information is requested from the relevant authorities in that country to confirm sites are permitted and regulated according to their national laws.

In our recently published Resources and Waste Strategy, we set out plans to introduce Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) for more waste streams, including tyres. This will increase the responsibility on tyre producers regarding their end of life. We are also further developing a range of measures including: increased monitoring of international waste shipments, improved provision for waste repatriation, and charging higher fees to improve compliance. These changes aim to ensure any waste we do send abroad is fit for recycling, and that it is recycled to equivalent standards as required in the UK. This should create a more level playing field for domestic recyclers as well as reducing the chances of exported tyres being mishandled.

25 Feb 2019, 4:53 p.m. Pupils: Per Capita Costs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the level of per pupil funding in England by his Department in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

The Department has protected the core schools budget overall in real terms since 2010. School funding in England is at its highest ever level, rising to £43.5 billion in 2020. Figures from the Institute for Fiscal Studies show that real terms per pupil funding for five to 16 year olds in 2020 will be more than 50% higher than it was in 2000.

The Department recognises that schools have faced cost pressures in recent years. The Department has announced a strategy (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/supporting-excellent-school-resource-management) setting out the range of support, current and planned, that it is making available to help schools reduce costs. This outlines the extensive support the Department is providing for schools and includes guidance to improve how they buy goods and services.

25 Feb 2019, 3:13 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Fraud Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether her Department has any (a) formal and (b) informal sharing agreements with police forces in relation to referrals relating to suspected benefit fraud.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) National Disclosure Unit provides a service for the whole of the UK, handling all requests to disclose information to police forces and other law enforcement agencies. This service is provided under the Data Protection Act, Section 29 (3) for the purposes of preventing and detecting crime, and is done to a standard set out in a Memorandum of Understanding agreed with the Association of Chief Police Officers.

If, during the course of a Police investigation there is a suggestion of a DWP related offence, as with any third party, there is an established gateway in place for the Police to refer this information to DWP.

Evidence received from a 3rd party can be used as a starting point for an investigation. However, DWP takes great care to corroborate any information received to substantiate (or otherwise) any allegation to ensure DWP is directing its resources appropriately.

25 Feb 2019, 2:52 p.m. Microbiology Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect of microbiota assessments as an adjunct to (a) physical examinations, and (b) mental health examination on the accuracy of medical diagnoses.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The Department funds research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR welcomes funding applications for research into any aspect of human health, including on the microbiome/microbota. It is not usual practice to ring-fence funds for particular topics or conditions. Applications are subject to peer review and judged in open competition, with awards being made on the basis of the importance of the topic to patients and health and care services, value for money and scientific quality.

The evidence on the use of microbiota to improve diagnosis for a range of conditions is currently the subject of active research. The NIHR has directly funded and supported research studies on the microbiota and microbiome totalling £23.8 million in since 2011/12.

25 Feb 2019, 12:40 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Fraud Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 18 February 2019 to Question 220104 on Social Security Benefits: Fraud, if she will make it her policy to record which police forces her Department has received information from.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The system employed by the Department to manage fraud and compliance referrals does not have the facility to capture this information. Making alterations to this system would incur a cost to the taxpayer which the Department cannot justify as it has no business reason to add this functionality.

14 Feb 2019, 5:20 p.m. Prison Sentences: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the factors contributing to the average length custodial sentences in Wales relative to England.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

Sentencing decisions are a matter for the independent courts.

When deciding what sentence to impose the courts take into account all the facts of each case. This will include the seriousness of the offence, the culpability of the offender and aggravating and mitigating factors, in line with any relevant sentencing guidelines issued by the Sentencing Council, which cover England and Wales.

The Ministry of Justice publishes criminal justice statistics, including sentencing and average custodial sentencing length, on a quarterly and annual basis. The latest quarterly statistics, to June 2018 are available at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/criminal-justice-system-statistics-quarterly-june-2018

14 Feb 2019, 4:53 p.m. Prison Sentences: Females Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many female offenders have been given immediate custodial sentences at magistrates courts in Wales in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Edward Argar)

Data for sentencing broken down by age, sex and location has been published up to December 2017 and can be found in the ‘Court outcomes by Police Force Area data tool’, available at the following link: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/733996/court-outcomes-by-pfa-2017-update.xlsx.

For Wales, filter the Police Force Area to Dyfed-Powys, Gwent, North Wales, South Wales.

For England, remove the above locations and ‘special/miscellaneous and unknown police forces’ from the Police Force Area filter.

For the number of young adults sentenced to less than 12 months custody:

  • Select ‘All’ in the ‘Court type’ filter
  • Select ’02: Young adults’ in the ‘Age Group’ filter
  • Select the relevant sentence lengths using the ‘Custodial Sentence Length’ filter

For the number of females given immediate custodial sentences at magistrates’ court:

  • Select ’02: Magistrates’ Court’ in the ‘Court type’ filter
  • Select ’02: Female’ in the ‘Sex’ filter
  • Select ’15: Immediate custody’ in the ‘Outcome’ filter
  • Select the four Welsh police forces in the Police Force Area
14 Feb 2019, 4:53 p.m. Sentencing: Young People Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of trends in the number of young adults sentenced to less than 12 months custody in (a) England and (b) Wales in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Edward Argar)

Data for sentencing broken down by age, sex and location has been published up to December 2017 and can be found in the ‘Court outcomes by Police Force Area data tool’, available at the following link: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/733996/court-outcomes-by-pfa-2017-update.xlsx.

For Wales, filter the Police Force Area to Dyfed-Powys, Gwent, North Wales, South Wales.

For England, remove the above locations and ‘special/miscellaneous and unknown police forces’ from the Police Force Area filter.

For the number of young adults sentenced to less than 12 months custody:

  • Select ‘All’ in the ‘Court type’ filter
  • Select ’02: Young adults’ in the ‘Age Group’ filter
  • Select the relevant sentence lengths using the ‘Custodial Sentence Length’ filter

For the number of females given immediate custodial sentences at magistrates’ court:

  • Select ’02: Magistrates’ Court’ in the ‘Court type’ filter
  • Select ’02: Female’ in the ‘Sex’ filter
  • Select ’15: Immediate custody’ in the ‘Outcome’ filter
  • Select the four Welsh police forces in the Police Force Area
14 Feb 2019, 2:58 p.m. Work Capability Assessment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will place in the Library a copy of the safeguarding policy used by her Department's contractors in relation to work capability assessments.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

A copy of the Centre for Health and Disability Assessment Service (CHDA) safeguarding policy will be placed in the Library in due course.

13 Feb 2019, 1:55 p.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to her Department's claimant service and experience survey 2017 to 2018, what steps her Department is taking to improve universal credit claimant satisfaction rates.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department’s claimant service and experience survey 2017/18 showed that 80 per cent of claimants are satisfied with Universal Credit. However, the Department is committed to ensuring that we provide the best experience possible for all claimants on Universal Credit, and is continuously learning and adapting to improve the service we offer our claimants.

Since this survey concluded in May 2018, we have already introduced a number of improvements, such as:

  • a new approach where established claimants who call the Universal Credit helpline are connected directly to the person or team who are dealing with their case;
  • improving our online system to allow claimants to upload their self-employed earnings, verify their childcare costs and apply for advances;
  • a service for claimants who are not able to interact with us through an online account which can remain in place throughout the claim or for a specific period of time;
  • locally developed plans to ensure that we can support claimants who have more complex needs;
  • delivering Mental Health Training nationally to our Work Coaches and by March 2020 all of our customer facing colleagues across all areas of DWP.
12 Feb 2019, 3:52 p.m. Railways: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the proportion of (a) total route length, (b) train stations, and (c) level crossings that are the responsibility of Network Rail Wales.

Answer (Andrew Jones)

Network Rail’s 2019-2024 Strategic Business Plan for the Wales route states that it operates and maintains 1,487 track miles of railway in Wales and the Border counties of England. It also states that the route includes 1,150 level crossings.

It gives a figure of 246 stations on the route, but these are not managed directly by Network Rail, and are instead the responsibility of train operating companies.

12 Feb 2019, 3:05 p.m. High Speed 2 Railway Line Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what proportion of HS2 funding (a) has been spent, (b) will be spent in the 2019-20 financial year and (c) will be spent after the end of the 2019-20 financial year in each (ii) nation and (ii) region of the UK.

Answer (Ms Nusrat Ghani)

A total of £5.5 billion has been spent between financial years 2009/10 and 2017/18, covering both HS2 Ltd and Department for Transport expenditure. We are unable to report spend beyond the end of 2017/18 financial year until the HS2 Ltd and DfT annual accounts are published. This spend includes Land & Property and HS2 Ltd core programme group expenditure.

Substantial construction spend will be seen across the whole of the UK. The Infrastructure and Projects Authority published a report in 2018* on UK transport investment allocated across regions, with analysis of where HS2 construction costs were expected to fall. The analysis takes a cost approach, apportioning spending according to the full length of route included in each region, and using industry benchmarks to weight the sections of route involving tunnels to reflect the increased cost of tunnelling.

*https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/759222/CCS207_CCS1118987248-001_National_Infrastructure_and_Construction_Pipeline_2018_Accessible.pdf

12 Feb 2019, 11:27 a.m. Employment and Support Allowance: Suicide Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to NHS Digital's Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey 2014, what assessment she has made of the factors contributing to attempted suicide rates of employment and support allowance claimants relative to the non-claimant population.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

Suicide is a tragic and complex issue which we take extremely seriously. Suicidal thoughts and behaviours cause considerable distress to those it affects, and it is therefore important that we interpret any data about these issues accurately. The Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey 2014, commissioned by NHS digital, makes no causal link between the claiming of benefit and the likelihood of suicide.

We recognise that many people claiming benefits, including Employment and Support Allowance, are particularly vulnerable and we continue to explore ways to improve the claimant journey, especially for those who have mental health conditions. We take mental health extremely seriously and have safeguards in place to ensure people are supported throughout the claiming process.

11 Feb 2019, 5:40 p.m. Prisoners: Injuries Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number of (a) male and (b) female prisoners who have suffered a traumatic brain injury at some point in their life.

Answer (Edward Argar)

The MoJ does not hold information on the number of male and female prisoners who have suffered a traumatic brain injury. NHS England commission health care services in prison and so may capture this information locally as part of their screening process.

On 6th February 2019, The Disabilities Trust published their ‘Making the Link’ Evaluation Report on their service to support female offenders with acquired brain injury in HMP Drake Hall. The report found that, of the 173 female offenders screened at HMP Drake Hall, 64% reported a history indicative of a brain injury.

In 2017-2018, The Disabilities Trust also ran a Brain Injury Linkworker pilot at six sites in the adult male estate. Findings from this pilot suggest that acquired brain injury is a key issue to be considered within the secure environment. Recent studies that have examined the prevalence of traumatic brain injury in prisons in England and Wales indicate this may affect 46% to 70% of the male population.

It is right that as a society we endeavour to better understand, diagnose and address the symptoms of brain injuries. This is equally true for the Criminal Justice System. We are working closely with NHS England and the Department of Health and Social Care to carefully consider the recommendations from both pilots, alongside other emerging evidence, to help determine next steps to better support this cohort of vulnerable offenders.

11 Feb 2019, 5:19 p.m. Business: Insolvency Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what comparative assessment he has made of year on year trends in the level of business insolvencies in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Kelly Tolhurst)

Official statistics covering company insolvencies are published quarterly, and include annual statistics on the number of company insolvencies in each of the last seven years. The latest figures, covering up to 2018Q4, are available at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/insolvency-statistics-october-to-december-2018.

11 Feb 2019, 3:50 p.m. Infrastructure Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will list the planned large-scale national infrastructure projects which have been cancelled by (a) private sector entities, (b) public sector entities and (c) public private partnerships in each of the last nine years; and what the (i) location and (ii) estimated value was of each such project.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

The National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline, published annually by the Infrastructure and Projects Authority, provides updates on the progress of the priority projects listed in the National Infrastructure Delivery Plan 2016-2021.

Please see the latest 2018 Analysis of National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline here : https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-infrastructure-and-construction-pipeline-2018

Link to the National Infrastructure Delivery Plan 2016-2021: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-infrastructure-delivery-plan-2016-to-2021

The IPA has published data on PFI / PF2 projects which are in procurement, construction or operation annually. The latest dataset is available here - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/private-finance-initiative-and-private-finance-2-projects-2017-summary-data

8 Feb 2019, 12:45 p.m. Suicide Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will list the (a) Government departments, b) executive agencies and (c) non-departmental public bodies that have contributed to the Cross-Government Suicide Prevention Plan.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

In 2018, the Department of Health and Social Care established a National Suicide Prevention Strategy Delivery Group (NSPSDG). The NSPSDG has developed the Cross-Government Suicide Prevention Workplan, which we published last month, and will be responsible for tracking, monitoring and reporting on the implementation of the Workplan. Further information is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/suicide-prevention-cross-government-plan

The NSPSDG comprises lead policy officials across Government and delivery agencies, including the voluntary and charitable sector through the National Suicide Prevention Alliance (NSPA), including:

- Department of Health and Social Care;

- Public Health England;

- NHS England/ NHS Improvement (joint representative);

- Care Quality Commission;

- Ministry of Justice;

- Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service;

- Independent Advisory Panel on Deaths in Custody;

- Office for National Statistics;

- Home Office;

- Department for Education;

- Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government;

- Department for Work and Pensions;

- Department for Transport;

- Health Education England;

- Highways England;

- Chief Coroner’s Office;

- Government Equalities Office;

- Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs;

- British Transport Police;

- Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport;

- Local Government Association;

- Association of Directors of Public Health; and

- National Suicide Prevention Alliance.

The membership of the NSPSDG will be reviewed regularly to ensure that it continues to reflect the strategic direction and priorities of the strategy. The Delivery Group will ensure that the Suicide Prevention Workplan is implemented and continues to evolve as new actions to prevent suicide are identified.

8 Feb 2019, 12:19 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Fraud Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many times her Department has received information on the activities of benefit claimants from territorial police forces in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is committed to reducing both fraud and error and considers all referrals of suspected benefit fraud. Information is received from a variety of different sources, including members of the public, local authorities, members of staff, data matching and the police.

There is no mandatory requirement for any police force within the United Kingdom to make referrals of suspected benefit fraud to DWP. Where information is received, DWP will check to see if there are grounds for further investigation, as with any potential benefit fraud allegation.

The table below shows the total volume of referrals received from 2010/11 – 2017/18 where the referral source is noted as ‘police’.

Year

2010/11

2011/12

2012/13

2013/14

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

2017/18

Police referrals to DWP

2,200

1,900

2,300

2,600

2,300

3,500

3,500

3,500

*All figures have been rounded to the nearest 100.

8 Feb 2019, 11:28 a.m. Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, how many ongoing workstreams there are throughout central Government on preparations for leaving the EU without a deal.

Answer (Chris Heaton-Harris)

Delivering the deal negotiated with the EU remains the Government’s top priority. However, the Government is accelerating no deal preparations to ensure the country is prepared for every eventuality, as this is the responsible thing to do. As part of this, we are monitoring over 300 projects being delivered by departments across Government.

7 Feb 2019, 4:19 p.m. Disability Living Allowance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the (a) number and (b) proportion of disability living allowance claimants with (i) psychiatric conditions and (ii) non psychiatric conditions who have lost their entitlement to disability living allowance following a personal independence payment eligibility assessment in each of the last five years.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

Clearance data, which can be broken down by condition for claimants who had a Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessment, by whether the claim was a reassessment or new claim and by the month the claim was cleared, is available on Stat Xplore: https://stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk

Guidance for users is available at: https://sw.stat-xplore.dwp.gov.uk/webapi/online-help/Getting-Started.html.

Latest statistics show that under PIP the proportion of recipients with a mental health condition getting the top rates of support is over five times higher compared to Disability Living Allowance (DLA): 31% under PIP compared to 6% under DLA.

7 Feb 2019, 3:40 p.m. Suicide: Young People Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what asssessment he has made of the factors affecting adolescent suicide rates in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Office for National Statistics publishes data on suicide registrations, including in children and young people. The latest suicide registrations data for 2017 was published in September 2018 at the following link:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/suicidesintheunitedkingdom/2017registrations

Although relatively rare, the number of suicides amongst children and young people remains a concern. The reasons why people take their life are often complex and may not be down to a single factor.

The National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Safety in Mental Health has published two reports into suicide in young people under 25 at the following links:

https://www.hqip.org.uk/resource/report-suicide-by-children-and-young-people-in-england/#.XFquKm3FJPZ

https://www.hqip.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/8iQSvI.pdf

We continue to fund the Multi-Centre Study of Self-harm, which is the most in-depth analysis and monitoring of self-harming trends in England. Self-harm is a key risk factor for suicide.

4 Feb 2019, 6:08 p.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of claimants who will undergo natural migration from legacy benefits into universal credit in 2019 in (a) the Vale of Clwyd, (b) Wales, and (c) the UK.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Claimants who move from existing benefits to Universal Credit do so because they have had a significant change in their circumstances that would previously have triggered a new claim to an existing benefit or tax credit.

As claimants only move when they have had a significant change in their circumstances we are unable to estimate this.

4 Feb 2019, 6 p.m. Regeneration: Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the amount of UK Government funding allocated for regeneration in (a) steel communities, (b) coal communities and (c) coastal communities in each of the last six years.

Answer (Jake Berry)

a) £192 million

b) £30 million

c) £145.65 million

4 Feb 2019, 3:15 p.m. Energy: Subsidies Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate he has made of the total amount of public subsidy made available by Government for (a) renewables and (b) fossil fuels in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Claire Perry)

Since 2010, the Government has invested £30.7 billion in renewable electricity technologies. The table below shows how much was invested in each year, through the Renewable Obligation (RO), Feed-in Tariff (FITs) and Contracts for Difference (CfD) schemes:

Cost (£m)

2010/11

2011/12

2012/13

2013/14

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

2017/18

Total over period

RO

1,285

1,458

1,991

2,599

3,114

3,743

4,511

5,371

FiTs

14

151

506

691

866

1,110

1,284

1,375

CfDs

92

544

CfD (admin)

12

13

Total

1,300

1,608

2,498

3,290

3,980

4,853

5,898

7,304

30,731

Renewables spending covered under the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme is published monthly and can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/rhi-mechanism-for-budget-management-estimated-commitments.

The UK has no fossil fuel subsidies. We’re firmly committed to tackling climate change by using renewables, storage, interconnectors, new nuclear and more to deliver a secure and dynamic energy market at the least possible cost for consumers.

4 Feb 2019, 2:08 p.m. Social Security Benefits Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether any claimants featured in her Department's promotional materials have received payment for doing so in each of the last four years.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

None of the claimants sharing their stories in the Department’s promotional materials have received payment for doing so in each of the last four years.    
4 Feb 2019, 1:10 p.m. Insolvency Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate he has made of the number of personal insolvencies in each local authority area in the UK in each year since 2014.

Answer (Kelly Tolhurst)

The Insolvency Service produces official statistics covering individual insolvencies by local authority area for each calendar year for England and Wales: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/individual-insolvencies-by-location-age-and-gender-england-and-wales-2017

The Accountant in Bankruptcy produces statistics covering individual insolvencies by local authority area for each financial year for Scotland: https://aib.gov.uk/about-aib/statistics-data/debt-solutions-local-authority

No statistics are available relating to individual insolvencies by local authority area in Northern Ireland.

4 Feb 2019, 12:14 p.m. Irish Sea: Pollution Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 8 January 2001 to Question 144163 on Irish Sea (Pollution), if he will list the pollution incidents involving discharges above 0.01 tonnes in the Irish sea in each of the last 4 years, with the (a) date of the incident, (b) the size of the incident, (c) the name of the company that reported the spill and (d) the name of the company responsible in each case.

Answer (Ms Nusrat Ghani)

The information requested is not recorded in a format that could easily be extracted from or readily available, and it could only be obtained at a disproportionate cost.

28 Jan 2019, 5:53 p.m. Cultural Heritage: Museums and Galleries Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will make an estimate of the proportion of artefacts in national museums which have never been on public display.

Answer (Michael Ellis)

It is estimated that together the fifteen DCMS-sponsored museums care for over 100 million objects. These institutions are engaged in an active programme of object loans, touring exhibitions and research programmes and in 2017/18 lent to over 1,300 venues in the UK. This allows millions of people throughout the UK to access the world class collections held by the national museums.

The department does not hold information on what proportion of objects in the national museums’ collections have never been on display and it is not possible to estimate.

The national museums provide further public access to their stored collections through their websites, publishing images, catalogue entries and interpretation and direct access.

28 Jan 2019, 4:56 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 21 January to Question 208793 on UK Shared Prosperity Fund, whether hon. Members were informed in advance of stakeholder events in their constituencies; and whether the Government plans to inform them of future events.

Answer (Jake Berry)

My officials have been holding engagement events across the UK, including in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The stakeholder events were with external stakeholders from a breadth of sectors in order to aid policy development. No ministers or political representatives have been in attendance.

28 Jan 2019, 3:35 p.m. Wylfa Power Station: Construction Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what contingency plans his Department is putting in place in the event that work on Wylfa Newydd Power Plant is not resumed.

Answer (Richard Harrington)

As my rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State said to the House on 17 January, the Government will continue to discuss with Hitachi bringing forward new nuclear at Wylfa. He also said that the Government will set out a new approach to financing new nuclear in the planned energy White paper in the summer. Furthermore, the Wylfa project was not due to be operational until the late 2020s and there are a range of options for generating this capacity over that time-frame.

28 Jan 2019, 2:51 p.m. Mental Health Services: Training Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of mental health counsellors who have undertaken Improving Access to Psychological Therapies training in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The information is not available in the format requested.

21 Jan 2019, 6:53 p.m. Prisoners Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number of prisoners per 100,000 people in (a) England and (b) Wales in each of the last six years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The Government does not publish information on the number of prisoners per 100,000 people in England and Wales as part of its statistical releases.

However, figures covering the total prison population in England and Wales as at 30 June each year, broken down by establishment, can be found in Table A1.13 of the document “Prison Population: 30 June 2018” at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/offender-management-statistics-quarterly-january-to-march-2018

In addition, the Office for National Statistics publishes mid-year population estimates at: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/populationandmigration/populationestimates

21 Jan 2019, 5:37 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 15 January 2019 to Question 207170 on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, if he will list the (a) engagement events that took place and (b) the region and nation in which they took place.

Answer (Jake Berry)

Over the past year we have held external stakeholder engagement events with representatives from a breadth of sectors. We spoke to businesses, public bodies, educational institutions, the voluntary and charity sector and rural partnership groups. Events have taken place in regions across the UK in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. These stakeholder events form part of a larger programme of engagement, which includes our public consultation which we intend to publish shortly.

To date we have held 22 engagement events which are listed below:

Four events in Belfast

Bristol

Four events in Cardiff

Coventry

Derry Londonderry

Dundee

Two events in Edinburgh

Gateshead

Glasgow

Huddersfield

London

Loughborough

Norwich

Preston

Truro

We are also continuing to engage with stakeholders across all four nations including events in St Asaph, Edinburgh and Inverness in the next month.

21 Jan 2019, 5:03 p.m. Jobcentre Plus: Labour Turnover Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many jobcentre plus staff (a) joined and (b) left employment with jobcentre plus in each of the last four years.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The information requested is not collated centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

21 Jan 2019, 4:44 p.m. Refugees: Graduates Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate he has made of the number of people with refugee status in the UK who are graduates.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

Information on the number of people in the UK with refugee status who are qualified doctors in their home country and those who are graduates are not recorded and held in a reportable format

This could only be obtained at disproportionate costs.

However, the information relating to the number of people with refugee status in the UK can be found in tab as_01_q at volume 1 of the Asylum ap-plications and initial decisions for main applicants, by country of nationality:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-september-2018/list-of-tables#asylum

21 Jan 2019, 4:44 p.m. Refugees: Doctors Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate he has made of the number of people in the UK with refugee status who are qualified doctors in their home country.

Answer (Caroline Nokes)

Information on the number of people in the UK with refugee status who are qualified doctors in their home country and those who are graduates are not recorded and held in a reportable format

This could only be obtained at disproportionate costs.

However, the information relating to the number of people with refugee status in the UK can be found in tab as_01_q at volume 1 of the Asylum ap-plications and initial decisions for main applicants, by country of nationality:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-september-2018/list-of-tables#asylum

21 Jan 2019, 4:39 p.m. Wylfa Power Station Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Prime Minister, if she will publish the minutes of her meeting with Japanese Prime MInister Shinzō Abe on 10 January 2019 on the proposed Wylfa Newydd power plant.

Answer (Mrs Theresa May)

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer, my Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy gave to the Hon. Member in the Oral Statement on the Nuclear Update on 17 January 2019, Column 1351.

21 Jan 2019, 10:27 a.m. Wylfa Power Station Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what recent discussions he has had with (a) ministerial colleagues, (b) his counterpart in the Japanese Government, and (c) representatives of Hitachi on the future of the proposed Wylfa Newydd power plant.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

I have had regular discussions with my ministerial colleagues, Hitachi, Horizon Nuclear Power and the Japanese Government regarding the proposed Wylfa Newydd power plant, as well as visiting senior executives of Hitachi in Tokyo in August 2017. I recently met with the Japanese Prime Minister and representatives of Hitachi at Downing Street last week. We fully recognise that Hitachi’s decision will be a disappointment to people in Anglesey and North Wales, especially given the efforts of many stakeholders to support this project. The UK Government continues to discuss options for Hitachi and others to take the project forward.

17 Jan 2019, 11:41 a.m. Wales Office: Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what discussions his Department had with the Prime Minister's office on the content of the Prime Minister's Brexit speech in Stoke-on-Trent on 14 January 2019.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

Ministers and civil servants in my Department have regular discussions with No 10 colleagues on a range of issues.

16 Jan 2019, 5:22 p.m. Prisoners: Alcoholic drinks and Drugs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the number of prisoners who have reported a drug or alcohol misuse problem upon arrival at prison in the latest period for which figures are available.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

Data on alcohol and drug misuse treatment in prisons and other secure settings is available from Public Health England’s national drug treatment monitoring system (NDTMS). The 2016-17 NDTMS report shows that there were 59,258 adults in contact with drug and alcohol treatment services within secure settings. Most of these (55,721) were in prisons, but there were also 3,015 in young offender institutions and 522 in immigration and removal centres. This report can be viewed at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/substance-misuse-treatment-in-secure-settings-statistics-2016-to-2017

16 Jan 2019, 4 p.m. Prisoners Release: Homelessness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number and proportion of prisoners serving sentences of less than six months who are homeless upon release in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The information requested could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.


It is vital that everyone leaving prison has somewhere stable and secure to live. Having somewhere stable to live acts as a platform for ex-offenders to be able to access the services and support needed to turn their back on crime for good. Published statistics for 2017/18 showing the accommodation status for all offenders released from custody and offenders on community sentences can be viewed here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/729062/accommodation-cirumstances-tables-2018.xlsx


As part of the Government initiative to reduce and ultimately eliminate rough sleeping across England, we will invest £6.4 million over two years in a pilot scheme to help ex-offenders into accommodation from three prisons, namely Bristol, Pentonville and Leeds. The pilots will focus on male prisoners who have served shorter sentences, who have been identified as having a risk of homelessness.


Furthermore, as of the 1 October 2018, Prisons and Probation providers have a “Duty to Refer” anyone who is homeless or at risk of becoming homeless to the Local Authority. Following a referral, Local Authorities are then required to make an assessment, meaning offenders can receive meaningful housing assistance at an earlier stage irrespective of their priority need.

16 Jan 2019, 3:58 p.m. Prison Sentences: Reoffenders Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what recent assessment he has made of the re-offending rate in relation to prison sentences of (a) less than six months and (b) more than six months.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

Adult proven reoffending data, broken down by a custodial sentence length of six months or less and a custodial sentence length of more than six months (including indeterminate sentenced prisoners), can be viewed in the table.

16 Jan 2019, 12:25 p.m. Social Services: Disability Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure the forthcoming social care green paper will address social care provision for adults of working age with a disability.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The Green Paper will cover care and support for adults of all ages, and incorporate insights from the joint work the Department of Health and Social Care has done with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government on working age adults with care and support needs.

The joint work undertaken by the Department of Health and Social Care and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government last year engaged widely with stakeholders; including local authorities, providers, national charities and system partners as well as people with lived experience, family members and organisations run by disabled people such as DRUK and Inclusion London. Officials have also collated and reviewed existing reports and evidence previously produced by voluntary sector organisations and other partners as part of this work.

15 Jan 2019, 5:54 p.m. Legal Aid Scheme: Social Security Benefits Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number of people who have been granted legal aid in welfare cases in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

Information about the volumes of people granted legal aid in welfare benefits cases is published at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/legal-aid-statistics. The latest figures (to September 2018) of Legal Help matter starts (from table 5.1) and Civil Representation granted certificates (from table 6.2) in welfare benefits cases are outlined in the below table.

Year

Legal Help Matter Starts

Civil Representation Granted Certificates

2008-09

135,751

51

2009-10

141,625

53

2010-11

116,081

23

2011-12

102,920

22

2012-13

82,554

16

2013-14

163

8

2014-15

505

6

2015-16

250

9

2016-17

442

10

2017-18

443

9

The MoJ has spent several months conducting a wide-ranging review of the reforms to legal aid and engaged with more than 100 organisations and individuals as part of the evidence-gathering phase.

Having finalised this engagement at the end of November, the review is now near completion and will be published shortly.

15 Jan 2019, 5:14 p.m. North Wales Police Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many police officers were employed by North Wales Police in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office collects and publishes statistics on the number of police officers employed by each police force in England and Wales on a bi-annual basis. These data are published in the ‘Police workforce, England and Wales’ statistical bulletins.

Data on the number of police officers in North Wales, as at 31 March each year and going back to March 2007, can be found in the accompanying Open Data Table: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/629362/open-data-table-police-workforce.ods

The next release of ‘Police workforce’ statistics is due to be published on 24th January, and will represent the picture as at 30 September 2018.

15 Jan 2019, 5:11 p.m. Babies: Mental Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what discussions he has had with educational psychologists on the effect of reception baseline assessments on infant mental health.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

The National Foundation for Education Research (NFER) are working with the department to develop and deliver the reception baseline assessment (RBA). NFER have been developing assessments for over 70 years, and all aspects of the RBA design are informed by an evidence base of early years research. As we move forward with the development and piloting of the assessment, the department will continue to work very closely with the sector to ensure we get the experience right for pupils.

The department is confident that the assessment will not be stressful or upsetting for children. It will be teacher-mediated and carried out one-to-one with the child using age-appropriate resources that they can handle and manipulate, lasting around 20 minutes. It will be similar to the on-entry assessments that schools already carry out in the reception year.

15 Jan 2019, 4:04 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 10 September 2018 to Question 170708 and the Written Statement of 24 July 2018 on Local Growth, HLWS898, if he will publish the proposed timeline for the consultation on the Shared Prosperity Fund.

Answer (Jake Berry)

We intend to publish the public consultation on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund shortly. Over the past year the Government has conducted a series of engagement events across the UK, which have provided a crucial opportunity for interested parties to provide their views on the design of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

14 Jan 2019, 5:30 p.m. Ethiopia: Overseas Aid Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how much UK aid Ethopia has received in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Harriett Baldwin)

Ethiopia has received the following amount of direct UK bilateral official development assistance (ODA) in each of the last 10 years.

UK Bilateral ODA spend in Ethiopia, £ million, 2008-2017

Year

UK Bilateral ODA

2008

140.2

2009

219.7

2010

263.5

2011

344.5

2012

265.7

2013

329.4

2014

321.7

2015

338.8

2016

334.3

2017

326.1

Source: Statistics on International Development

14 Jan 2019, 5:03 p.m. Government Departments: Social Media Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will place in the Library all social media adverts that the Government has used to promote the Prime Minister's EU Withdrawal Agreement.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

These social media adverts cannot be added to the Library as they were video assets, which the House of Commons Library does not accept/record.

14 Jan 2019, 3:45 p.m. Exports: EU Countries Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if he will set out the proportion of total exports for each region of the UK that went to the EU in each of the last three years for which data is available.

Answer (Sir George Hollingbery)

Estimates of the percentage of goods exports by UK region are published by HM Revenue and Customs in its Regional Trade Statistics release:

https://www.uktradeinfo.com/statistics/rts/pages/default.aspx

Experimental estimates of the percentage of services exports by GB region are published by the Office for National Statistics, however they do not cover all services (they exclude travel, transport and financial services) and only cover 2011-2015 and Great Britain. https://www.ons.gov.uk/businessindustryandtrade/internationaltrade/articles/estimatingthevalueofserviceexportsabroadfromdifferentpartsoftheuk/2015

The two datasets above cannot be aggregated together due to differences in methodology and coverage.

14 Jan 2019, 2:26 p.m. Civil Service: EU Nationals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate he has made of the (a) number of EU nationals who are employed by the civil service in each Government Department and (b) proportion of civil servants employed by each such Department who are EU nationals.

Answer (Sir David Lidington)

The number of non-UK EU citizens employed within the Civil Service is not consistently collected across Government, therefore it is not possible to provide the number of EU nationals employed by the Civil Service in each Government department or the proportion of civil servants employed by each department.

14 Jan 2019, 11:25 a.m. Brexit: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, with reference to the Ministers Quarterly Transparency Return July to September 2018, published on 19 December 2018, if he will publish the names of the (a) the attendees of the expert panel on 17 October 2018 to discuss EU exit issues, and (b) the outcomes of that meeting.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

My Department’s Quarterly Transparency Return for July to September 2018 recorded in error a meeting of my EU Expert Panel on 17 October. The meeting took place on 17 September and this has now been corrected.

The September meeting enabled me to engage directly with key stakeholders in Wales on the progress of EU exit work and to hear their views. We discussed a wide range of EU exit matters including the government’s white papers and technical notices.

The meeting was attended by representatives from the following organisations:

Farmers Union of Wales

National Farmers Union Cymru

South and Mid Wales Chamber of Commerce

Snowdonia Enterprise Zone

Wales Council for Voluntary Action

Country Landowners Association Cymru

Confederation of British Industry (Wales)

Welsh Local Government Association

Wales Environment Link

11 Jan 2019, 3:59 p.m. Jobcentres: Travel Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the effect of public transport provision on rates of missed job centre plus appointments.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Claimants are able to contact their local Jobcentre via the phone to notify of any difficulties they may have in attending appointments. In addition Universal Credit claimants can use their online journal to send a message direct to their Work Coach or contact the UC helpline to speak to a Case Manager.

Claimants who live in remote areas and who are unable to attend the local Jobcentre because of travel restrictions are supported through digital channels, via the phone and where appropriate postal signing. This enables claimants to continue to engage with us, receive appropriate support and satisfy the conditions of their personalised Claimant Commitment when they are unable to attend their Jobcentre. In addition we provide outreach services in partnership with national and local organisations to deliver Jobcentre services in a partner’s premises. Local jobcentres have the flexibility to work alongside organisations to help meet the needs of their communities, helping our most vulnerable, at risk, claimants to access the support they need

If a claimant misses an appointment due to public transport difficulties, this will be taken into account in deciding good reason. Sanctions are only used in a small percentage of cases, and that is when people fail to meet their agreed commitments without good reason. When considering whether a sanction is appropriate, a Decision Maker will take all the claimant’s individual circumstances, including any health conditions or disabilities, domestic emergencies and any evidence of good reason, into account before deciding whether a sanction is warranted.

No such assessment has been undertaken.

11 Jan 2019, 2:45 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 10 September 2018 to Question 170708 on UK Shared Prosperity Fund: Public Consultation, for what reason the consultation on the shared prosperity fund has been delayed.

Answer (Jake Berry)

The Government recognises the importance of reassuring local areas on the future of local growth funding once we have left the European Union and providing clarity on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF). Therefore we intend to publish the full consultation document shortly.

The Government has continued to make great progress on the design of the UKSPF over the past year and, ahead of the forthcoming consultation on the UKSPF, have held seventeen engagement events across the UK with over five hundred representatives from a breadth of sectors, in order to aid policy development.

11 Jan 2019, 2:45 p.m. Uk Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 10 September 2018 to Question 170708 on UK Shared Prosperity Fund: Public Consultation, which Departments decided to postpone the consultation on the shared prosperity fund.

Answer (Jake Berry)

The Government recognises the importance of reassuring local areas on the future of local growth funding once we have left the European Union and providing clarity on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF). Therefore we intend to publish the full consultation document shortly.

The Government has continued to make great progress on the design of the UKSPF over the past year and, ahead of the forthcoming consultation on the UKSPF, have held seventeen engagement events across the UK with over five hundred representatives from a breadth of sectors, in order to aid policy development.

11 Jan 2019, 10:51 a.m. Large Goods Vehicles: Road Traffic Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the validity of research commissioned by his Department and undertaken by UCL on the effect of vehicle goods checks on traffic levels in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

Answer (Chris Grayling)

This analysis was procured by the Department and undertaken by a third party consultant two years ago. The modelling relies on a set of stylised assumptions to assess a range of scenarios. Those scenarios were developed to examine the sensitivity of traffic flows to delays. They are not a prediction of likely events.

DfT has been fully preparing for a range of scenarios and has focused on no deal planning for some time. We continue to work closely with a range of partners on plans to ensure that trade and traffic can continue to move as freely as possible between the UK and Europe.

11 Jan 2019, 9:45 a.m. Housing Benefit: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the amount her Department has spent on housing benefit in each local authority area in Wales in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

Housing Benefit expenditure by Local Authority from 1996/97 to 2017/18 is published on GOV.uk at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/741593/hb-and-ctb-by-la-2017-18.ods

10 Jan 2019, 4:54 p.m. Prosecutions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many (a) successful and (b) unsuccessful prosecutions were made under section 130 of the Mental Health Act 1983 in each territorial police force area in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The information is not held centrally by the department, and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

10 Jan 2019, 3:02 p.m. Sleeping Rough Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what recent estimate he has made of the number of homeless people sleeping in (a) tents and (b) cars.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

National street counts and intelligence driven estimates of people sleeping rough are conducted every year in autumn. The most recent data from the autumn 2017 annual street count and estimate returned a total figure of 4,751 rough sleepers in England.

Rough sleepers are defined as people sleeping, about to bed down, or actually bedded down in the open air (such as on the streets, in tents or in bus shelters) - as well as people in buildings or other places not designed for habitation. As such, homeless people sleeping in tents or cars are captured in the total. However, whilst they are incorporated in our data, there is not a separate breakdown for these demographics.

The official street count and estimate of the number of people sleeping rough on a single night in England, between 1 October 2018 and 31 November 2018, will be published on Thursday 31 January 2019.

This Government is committed to reducing homelessness and rough sleeping. No one should ever have to sleep rough. That is why last summer we published the cross-government Rough Sleeping Strategy which sets out an ambitious £100 million package to help people who sleep rough now, but also puts in place the structures that will end rough sleeping once and for all. The Government has now committed over £1.2 billion to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping over the spending review period.

7 Jan 2019, 5:41 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Denbighshire Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many PIP mandatory reconsiderations in Denbighshire were (a) upheld and (b) dismissed in each quarter since January 2015.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The tables below provide Mandatory Reconsideration (MR) outcomes in Denbighshire by period of clearance in each quarter since January 2015 (Normal Rules).

MRs where the decision was not revised

2015

2016

2017

2018

January to March

10

#

10

#

April to June

#

10

#

#

July to September

#

10

#

#

October to December

#

20

#

n/a

MRs where the decision was revised but the award unchanged

2015

2016

2017

2018

January to March

70

130

160

80

April to June

30

250

100

80

July to September

50

220

60

70

October to December

60

260

70

n/a

MRs where the decision was revised and the award changed

2015

2016

2017

2018

January to March

30

20

60

40

April to June

10

80

40

30

July to September

20

70

20

30

October to December

20

90

20

n/a

MRs that were withdrawn or cancelled

2015

2016

2017

2018

January to March

#

10

20

10

April to June

#

20

10

10

July to September

0

20

#

#

October to December

0

20

10

n/a

Data has been rounded to the nearest 10 and includes people living in the Denbighshire Local Authority Area. ‘#’ means fewer than 5 in this category.

7 Jan 2019, 4:10 p.m. NHS and Social Services: Migrant Workers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect of the Government's Immigration White Paper on the level of staffing for (a) clinical roles in the NHS, (b) non-clinical roles in the NHS and (c) the social care sector.

Answer (Stephen Hammond)

The White Paper sets out a new immigration system that will work in the interests of the United Kingdom. The future system will focus on high skills, welcoming talented and hardworking individuals that will support the UK’s dynamic economy, brilliant National Health Service and indispensable social care services.

For skilled migrants there will be no cap on numbers. This will mean that all skilled roles – whether clinical or non-clinical – will benefit from the certainty that already exists for doctors and nurses, will give the NHS and social care providers the confidence that they will be able to bring in any suitably skilled migrant and enable the Government to process cases immediately. We will also abolish the Resident Labour Market Test for skilled workers – this will remove a month from the process of recruiting from overseas.

We will also introduce a time limited route for temporary short-term workers of all skill levels. It is likely, however, that there could be some decrease in the flow of so called lower skilled workers from abroad. We know we need to redouble our efforts to promote jobs in the NHS and social care to the domestic workforce and we have has made improving the working lives of the millions of people who work in health and social care one of our top priorities, and why we have launched recruitment campaigns for both the NHS and social care. We are also clear that we want the 167,000 European Union nationals who currently work in the health and social care sectors to stay in the UK after we leave the EU, and in December 2018 they were able to apply for settled status early as part of the testing phase of the wider scheme.

We continue to monitor and analyse overall staffing levels across the NHS and adult social care, including the impact of the proposed future immigration system.

7 Jan 2019, 1:43 p.m. Food: Manufacturing Industries Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effect of policies in the Government's Immigration White Paper on the level of staffing in the food and drink manufacturing sector.

Answer (George Eustice)

The White Paper is the beginning of a consultation with employers about possible future options. Defra is considering the latest data, and working closely with industry to understand labour demand and supply, including both permanent and seasonal workforce requirements. Existing employees will be able to stay and there will be a period where lower skilled workers will be able to continue to travel to the UK to work once the new immigration framework is implemented.

7 Jan 2019, 12:50 p.m. Wales Office: Written Questions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether his Department uses an internal system to classify written parliamentary questions according to their political sensitivity.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

No.

21 Dec 2018, 2:36 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate his Department has made of the number of personal independence payment cases appealed to HM Courts and Tribunal Service in each quarter since January 2015.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

Information about the volumes and outcomes of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) appeals to the First-tier Tribunal (Social Security and Child Support) (SSCS) is published at:

www.gov.uk/government/collections/tribunals-statistics

Latest figures (to June 2018) indicate that since PIP was introduced, 3.5 million decisions have been made, and of these 9% have been appealed and 4% have been overturned at tribunals.

We are working with the Department for Work and Pensions to understand what could be done to reduce the number of appeals being submitted to the tribunal, through their focus on improving decision-making and the mandatory reconsideration process.

We are also taking forward initiatives with potential to increase the capacity and performance of the tribunal, for instance by introducing case management “triage” sessions, with the aim of reducing the time taken for appeals to reach final determination.

21 Dec 2018, 2:36 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate his department has made of the (a) number and (b) percentage of personal independence payment cases that have been (i) upheld and (ii) overturned by HM Courts and Tribunal Service at appeal stage in each quarter since January 2015.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

Information about the volumes and outcomes of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) appeals to the First-tier Tribunal (Social Security and Child Support) (SSCS) is published at:

www.gov.uk/government/collections/tribunals-statistics

Latest figures (to June 2018) indicate that since PIP was introduced, 3.5 million decisions have been made, and of these 9% have been appealed and 4% have been overturned at tribunals.

We are working with the Department for Work and Pensions to understand what could be done to reduce the number of appeals being submitted to the tribunal, through their focus on improving decision-making and the mandatory reconsideration process.

We are also taking forward initiatives with potential to increase the capacity and performance of the tribunal, for instance by introducing case management “triage” sessions, with the aim of reducing the time taken for appeals to reach final determination.

20 Dec 2018, 1:59 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Medical Examinations Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the average waiting time for personal independence payment assessments to be completed from initial assessment to assessment being written up by the assessor in each quarter since January 2015.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

We have interpreted your reference of ‘initial assessment’ to be the face to face assessment. Specific information relating to the average time a PIP assessment report is completed from the initial assessment is not a formal contractual requirement and PIP Assessment Guidance does not make any specific reference to write up times.

In response to Paul Grays’ second independent review of PIP the DWP agreed that reports should be completed whilst the assessment remains ‘fresh’ in the mind of the health professional who completed the assessment. This allows the opportunity for further follow up work before the assessment report is finalised and sent to the Departmental decision maker.

We will continue to work closely with both assessment providers to ensure their assessment reports are to the standard that the Department expects, and are completed within an optimum timeframe. High quality and timely assessment reports will continue to be key requirements for PIP contracts.

20 Dec 2018, 1:51 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Denbighshire Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate her Department has made of the number of mandatory reconsiderations for personal independence payments in Denbighshire in each quarter since January 2015.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The information requested is provided in the table below.

Personal Independence Payment Mandatory Reconsideration registrations by period of registration (Normal Rules) - Denbighshire

-

2015

2016

2017

2018

January to March

90

240

180

120

April to June

50

400

150

120

July to September

70

360

90

120

October to December

90

320

120

n/a

Data has been rounded to the nearest 10 and includes people living in the Denbighshire Local Authority Area.

19 Dec 2018, 5:06 p.m. Government Departments: Social Media Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what proportion of the electorate in each parliamentary constituency have been targeted by social media advertising which has been paid for by the public purse and which promotes the Prime Minister's EU Withdrawal Agreement.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

Social media advertising was prompted to all adults in the UK. The requested data is therefore not available at constituency level.

19 Dec 2018, 11:33 a.m. Homelessness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will list the last 10 occasions on which his Department has responded to a request for a comment from the media on homelessness; and what his Department's response was on each such occasion.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

On Thursday 13 and Friday 14 December my Department received 10 requests for comment from the media on homeless, which were responded to as follows.

The Department provided the following statement to requests from 6 media outlets, and one further media outlet requesting an interview or statement in response to a report from Crisis on the numbers of rough sleepers in Britain:

Heather Wheeler MP, Minister for Housing and Homelessness said: “It is simply unacceptable that anyone has to sleep on the streets which is why we have set out bold plans backed by £1.2 billion to tackle all forms of homelessness, including our £100 million Rough Sleeping Strategy. This is already making a difference through additional bed spaces and support workers and new legislation means people at risk are getting the help they need more quickly. But we know more needs to be done to end rough sleeping for good and are committed to work with partners like Crisis to do just that.”

Further, the Department provided the following statement to requests from 3 media outlets in response to the publication of experimental homelessness statistics:

Heather Wheeler MP, Minister for Housing & Homelessness said: “Everyone deserves a safe and secure place to live. It is good to see our Homeless Reduction Act making a real difference but we know we need to do more. “That is why we are investing £1.2 billion to tackle all forms of homelessness, we are putting £9 billion into our affordable housing programme and we are also empowering councils to borrow to build more council homes to ensure that more people have a home of their own.”

This information was compiled on Friday 14 December.

19 Dec 2018, 10:48 a.m. Government Departments: Social Media Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people in each nation and region of the UK (a) were targeted by and (b) interacted with social media advertising promoting the Withdrawal Agreement that was paid for by the public purse.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

Public information advertising for the EU Withdrawal Agreement was targeted to all adults in Britain. Only the number of impressions (appearances of the advert) are available by region, not number of interactions (and only for twitter):

Location

Impressions

England, GB

24057420

Greater London, GB

8176676

North West England, GB

3289345

Yorkshire and The Humber, GB

1980093

East England, GB

2069548

West Midlands, GB

1860440

South East England, GB

3054779

South West England, GB

1680184

North East England, GB

1048632

East Midlands, GB

1688860

Northern Ireland, GB

674135

Scotland, GB

3293251

Wales, GB

1301466

17 Dec 2018, 5:36 p.m. Drugs and Medical Equipment: Imports Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the robustness of supply chain networks for EU supplied (a) medicines, and (b) medical equipment in (i) England, (ii) Wales, (iii) Scotland and (iv) Northern Ireland over the next two years.

Answer (Stephen Hammond)

The Government has now agreed the Withdrawal Agreement with the European Commission. As a consequence, the Department does not expect market access to medicines and medical products for the United Kingdom to change under the terms of that agreement during the implementation period, which will run from March 2019 until December 2020. The supply of medicines and medical products would remain unchanged during the implementation period.

The Department does not expect to see significant changes to existing medicine and medical product supply chains or capacity in the intervening period. However, we will be monitoring this closely.

As a responsible Government, we continue to prepare proportionately for all scenarios, including the unlikely outcome that we leave the European Union without a deal in March 2019.

Our contingency planning covers the entire UK and has been developed in partnership with the devolved administrations. The public can be confident that the UK Government and the devolved administrations are working to ensure an aligned approach to achieving our objective of ensuring a seamless supply to patients throughout the UK should we leave the EU without a deal in March 2019.

There are already teams within the Department that deal with medical supplies shortages arising both in the community and in hospitals. We have well-established operational levers and channels we use between ourselves, the Medicines and Health products Regulatory Agency and the National Health Service to mitigate supply issues.

10 Dec 2018, 2:33 p.m. Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what representations the Government has received from EU (a) officials and (b) member states on extending Article 50.

Answer (Chris Heaton-Harris)

It is a matter of firm Government policy that Article 50 will not be extended and we will be leaving the EU in a smooth and orderly way on 29 March 2019. The detailed terms set out in the Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration has been endorsed by the other EU Member States.

6 Dec 2018, 5:17 p.m. Suicide Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of people that (a) have attempted and (b) stated that they have considered suicide as a result of not being able to access mental health services.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Department does not collect data on people who have considered or attempted suicide as a result of not being able to access mental health services.

Suicide prevention is a priority for this Government, and this Government is also implementing the first access and waiting times for mental health. The National Health Service is meeting or on track to meet these first standards.

6 Dec 2018, 5:16 p.m. Mental Health Services: Waiting Lists Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what proportion of people waited six months or longer for a mental health assessment in each of the last five years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

This information is not available in the format requested.

6 Dec 2018, 12:14 p.m. World War I: War Memorials Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of a dedicated UK-based memorial to mark the Mesopotamian campaign of the First World War.

Answer (Michael Ellis)

It is important to remember that the fighting and loss of life continued in Mesopotamia beyond the Armistice of 1918. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s Basra Memorial in Iraq commemorates the more than 40,500 members of Commonwealth forces who died during the Campaign and whose graves are not known. While the current instability in the region makes the work of the Commission challenging, the Government’s centenary programme did not include the development of new memorials. Traditionally, new memorials are funded by public subscription and the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire provides a highly fitting and appropriate location for new memorials of many kinds.

3 Dec 2018, 4:13 p.m. Wales Office: Procurement Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, pursuant to the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 194070 on Wales Office: Procurement, what proportion of procurement contracts his Department awarded to SMEs in each of the last three years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) does not record the percentage of contracts awarded each financial year with Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) companies. However, the MoJ does have a commitment that a percentage of its spend each year will be with SME’s. The below table provides the spend with SME’s for 2015/2016 and 2016/2017 against the MoJ’s target percentage.

Year

Total Procurement Spend (£m)

Direct Spend with SMEs (£m)

Direct Spend with SMEs as %

Indirect Spend with SMEs (£m)

Indirect Spend with SMEs as %

Total SME Spend as %

Central Government Target Percentage

15/16

£4,362

£1,386

29.9%

£196

4.2%

34.2%

25%

16/17

£4,305

£1,257

29.2%

£317

7.4%

36.6%

33%

The figures for the MoJ spend with SME’s for 2017/2018 are currently going through the governance and approval process ahead of being published and therefore cannot be released yet. The MoJ target percentage for spend with SMEs will be set out in the MoJ Action Plan due to be published shortly. Since January 2011, details of central government contracts above the value of £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder. Contracts published prior to 26 February 2015 can be viewed at: https://data.gov.uk/data/contracts-finder-archive Those published after 26 February 2015 can be viewed at: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search”

3 Dec 2018, 12:01 p.m. Mental Illness: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 194622 on Antidepressants: Children, what estimate he has made of the number of children diagnosed with a mental health disorder in each of the last five years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

This information is not available in the format requested.

3 Dec 2018, 9:36 a.m. Wales Office: Billing Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 194068 on Wales Office: Billing, what the reasons were for the undisputed and valid invoices that were not paid within 10 days of receipt in the last 12 months.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales aims to pay all invoices within 10 days of receipt, and currently achieves this target in 90% of cases. The target is not met in a small number of cases for a variety of reasons, including invoices with incorrect or incomplete information and delays in the processing of payments by our service provider.

29 Nov 2018, 5:26 p.m. Gangs: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of trends in the level of gang-related crime in (a) North Wales and (b) Wales.

Answer (Victoria Atkins)

We do not keep information on gang related crime, but trends in knife crime, gun crime and homicide help give an indication of possible gang related crime in Wales and North Wales.

The latest year-on-year data comparing June 2018 to June 2017 show that there is a bigger rise in knife crime in Wales (30%) compared to England and Wales as a whole (12%). Knife crime in North Wales has remained broadly stable in the same period, with 268 cases in the year to June 2018 (-1%, down from 270). When looking at the 5-year trend, knife crime in Wales has almost doubled between 2013/14 and 2017/18 (61% in E&W), and this is even more in North Wales specifically, where the number of knife crime cases increased from 100 in 2013/14 to 257 in 2017/18.

Whilst gun crime in Wales has risen by 7% between 2013/14 and 2016/17, this is lower than the rise witnessed in England and Wales (31%). Gun crime in North Wales has gone down in the same period but note that these are generally low volumes (from 18 cases in 2013/14 to 13 in 2016/17).

Finally, homicides in Wales more than doubled between 2013/14 and 2017/18, from 16 to 35 cases. This is a bigger proportionate rise than England and Wales, where homicides increased by 36% in the same period. An increase in homicides is also witnessed in North Wales, but again, these are low volumes (from 3 cases in 2013/14 to 12 in 2017/18).

29 Nov 2018, 4:05 p.m. Wales Office: Sick Leave Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what estimate he has made of the number of days lost due to staff absences in his Department as a result of (a) physical ill health, (b) mental ill health, (c) stress and (d) anxiety disorders in each of the last five years.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales is not an employer in its own right. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) provides employment services on our behalf, including collection of absence data.

The physical and mental wellbeing of our staff is crucially important to the department and staff have access to all MoJ employee services that help to sustain physical and mental wellbeing, including Occupational Health and a 24-hour employee assistance helpline.

The information below outlines the number of days lost due to staff absences as a result of (a) physical ill health, (b) mental ill health, (c) stress and (d) anxiety disorders. MoJ categorise stress and anxiety disorders as mental ill health. We have therefore extracted the relevant data from (b) and recorded these in (c) and (d) below. Please note that this data is collected by calendar year and therefore data is not yet available for 2018.

Number of working days lost due to:

Calendar Year

(a) physical ill health

(b) mental ill health,

(c) stress

(d) anxiety disorders

2017

128

0

4

5

2016

27.5

0

21

0

2015

69

0

39

0

2014

135

0

0

0

2013

289

40

273

0

29 Nov 2018, 11:19 a.m. Wales Office: Nurseries Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many of his Department's offices have childcare facilities onsite.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

There are no on-site childcare facilities provided by the Office of the Secretary of State for Wales on its estate. However, the Department recognises that staff need flexible pre-school and out-of-school childcare of a type and in a location most convenient to them.

The Office is not an employer, with all staff employed by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). The MoJ offers a salary sacrifice scheme for childcare vouchers which enables staff to choose their own childcare provider (subject to meeting eligibility requirements) and have their childcare costs reduced by taking part of their salary in the form of childcare vouchers, which are exempt from tax and National Insurance contributions. We also follow MoJ polices by offering a range of flexible working options to staff, including term-time working, job shares and compressed hours, to allow staff with caring responsibilities to work in the way that best suits them.

29 Nov 2018, 11:18 a.m. Embassies: Cardiff Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what discussions he has had with overseas diplomats about the merits of locating a consulate in Cardiff.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

I have regular meetings with overseas diplomats to discuss opportunities to strengthen links between Wales and countries across the globe as the UK leaves the European Union. This engagement supports my ambition for an outward looking Wales as part of a truly global Britain.

29 Nov 2018, 11:17 a.m. Wales Office: Pensions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what percentage of staff employed in his Department make voluntary pension contributions; and whether his Department supports that practice.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales is not an employer in its own right. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) provide employment services on our behalf. As of 31 October, 100% of staff on MoJ payroll on assignment to the Department made voluntary pension contributions. MoJ supports voluntary pension contributions through Civil Service Pensions.

29 Nov 2018, 11:16 a.m. Wales Office: Data Protection Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many data breaches occurred in his Department in each of the last three years for which data is available.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

None.

29 Nov 2018, 11:15 a.m. EU Grants and Loans: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what the largest EU funded projects in Wales were in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

Details of the projects in Wales funded by the European Union in the last ten years are available at the following addresses:

2014-2020: https://gov.wales/funding/eu-funds/2014-2020/approved-projects/?lang=en

2007-2013: https://gov.wales/funding/eu-funds/previous/searchprojects1/?lang=en

29 Nov 2018, 9:10 a.m. Research: Expenditure Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much the Government has spent on R&D in each of the last five years.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

The Government has increased spending on R&D in the last five years.

Table 3 of the ONS statistical bulletin “UK Government expenditure on science, engineering and technology 2016” gives the following figures for total UK Government net expenditure on R&D, including indicative UK contributions to EU R&D, of

£ million

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

9,953

10,816

10,941

11,070

11,230

We have an ambition to raise total public and private R&D expenditure to 2.4% of GDP by 2027. As a first step to reaching the 2.4% target, we announced in the 2016 Autumn Statement, and expanded in the 2017 Budget, an additional of £7 billion for R&D over 5 years from 2017-18 to 2021-22 as part of the National Productivity Investment Fund.

We expect to see 2017 data next March.

28 Nov 2018, 3:56 p.m. Homelessness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made the number of people made homeless in each of the last 18 months.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

My Department has published quarterly statistics on statutory homelessness and homelessness prevention and relief activities in England. The latest published statistics are from January – March 2018. My Department also publishes annual counts and estimates of people sleeping rough.

The latest statistics can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/live-tables-on-homelessness.

28 Nov 2018, 8:44 a.m. Prisons: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many visits he has made to prisons in Wales.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

Most recently I visited HMP & YOI Parc, and I intend to visit HMP & YOI Berwyn in the New Year.

27 Nov 2018, 6:11 p.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when her Department plans to respond to the recommendations set out in the Work and Pensions Committee report, Universal Support.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Work and Pensions Select Committee recently published its report on Universal Support. We will respond to the Committee’s recommendations in due course.

27 Nov 2018, 5:39 p.m. Employment: Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department is taking to reduce the effect of mental ill health on the economy.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

In January 2017, the Prime Minister commissioned Lord Dennis Stevenson and Paul Farmer, the Chief Executive of Mind, to conduct an independent review into how employers can better support all employees, including those with mental ill health or wellbeing, to remain in and thrive at work. Thriving at Work: The Stevenson / Farmer review of mental health and employers was published in October 2017.


The Government responded to Thriving at Work through the joint DWP and DHSC Work and Health Unit’s (WHU) Improving Lives: The Future of Work, Health and Disability on 30th November 2017. This response welcomed key recommendations from the review for employers to adopt a set of core and enhanced mental health standards and committed WHU to oversee progress across the review’s 40 recommendations that range from short term deliverables to longer term reform.

Government is working with the authors of the review and key stakeholders across the public, private and voluntary sectors to ensure that employers of all sizes act to implement the core and enhanced standards and help them, and their employees, realise the benefits of healthy, inclusive workplaces. One of the actions we have taken is to work with partners, including employers, to develop a framework to support organisations to record and voluntarily report information on disability and mental health in the workplace. This framework was published on 22nd November 2018 and is aimed at large employers with 250 or more employees. The Government believes that transparency and reporting are effective levers in driving the culture change required to build a more inclusive society.

27 Nov 2018, 5:37 p.m. Prison Officers: Mental Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps his Department is taking to support the mental wellbeing of prison officers.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

HMPPS recognises the importance of staff wellbeing and offers a range of support that includes access to specialist Mental Health Advisers provided by our Occupational Health supplier.

HMPPS offers further staff support through its Employee Assistance Programme which includes a 24hr/365 days per year confidential helpline and access to mental health support by way of confidential counselling together with a, Structured Professional Support service which has been developed to provide individual or group sessions facilitated by Mental Health Advisers or Therapists. The aim of the sessions are to help to reduce the likelihood that staff will experience adverse effects as a result of working on programmes with offenders or on high risk cases.

27 Nov 2018, 5:14 p.m. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when his Department plans to respond to the recommendations set out in the Public Accounts Committee report, Defra's progress towards Brexit.

Answer (David Rutley)

The Department will respond fully to the recommendations set out in the Public Accounts Committee report on Defra’s progress towards Brexit in a Treasury Minute, which will be published by the Treasury Officer of Accounts on 21 January 2019.

27 Nov 2018, 5:12 p.m. Antidepressants: Children Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many children have been prescribed antidepressants in each of the last five years.

Answer (Steve Brine)

The information is not held in the format requested and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

27 Nov 2018, 1:47 p.m. Transport: Per Capita Costs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of transport spending per capita in (a) Wales, b) London and (c) the UK in each of the last five years.

Answer (Andrew Jones)

Figures on public sector expenditure at a regional level are part of the Government’s Country and Regional Analysis (CRA) statistics. These provide statistical allocations of public spending according to where the benefits of that spend are accrued, although the complexity of transport networks means that it is not always possible or appropriate to allocate transport spending on a ‘who benefits’ basis. Where this is the case, expenditure has been apportioned based on actual regional spend rather than where the benefit lies. This is particularly relevant for the rail network and highways.

When comparing expenditure across regions a number of factors should be considered. The benefits from spend on transport interventions will often accrue to people far beyond the residents of the immediate local area or region. This is particularly the case for spending on the railways which connect cities and regions across the country and deliver broader benefits beyond the region concerned. In addition, when expenditure is presented on a “per head of population” (or “per capita”) basis, it does not account for the pressure that large numbers of commuters and visitors from outside of a region can add to the transport networks.

The latest CRA statistics, published by HM Treasury on 20th November 2018, include total public expenditure on transport per capita on a regional basis from 2013-14 up to 2017-18, and are published at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/country-and-regional-analysis.

The statistics include spend on transport by all public sector organisations including the Department for Transport, Local Authorities, Public Corporations (in the case of transport, this is mainly spend by London Underground) and other Government Departments including devolved administrations.

The Department for Transport does not allocate funding to transport on a ‘per head of population’ basis. Investment decisions are based on a rigorous and fair appraisal process that ensures spending goes to the projects and programmes where it delivers greatest value-for-money for both taxpayers and passengers.

27 Nov 2018, 12:45 p.m. Wales Office: Procurement Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what proportion of procurement contracts were awarded by his Department to SMEs in each of the last three years.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales receives procurement services from the Ministry of Justice and does not issue contracts directly.

27 Nov 2018, 12:41 p.m. Wales Office: Billing Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what percentage of invoices received from his Department's suppliers were paid within 10 days of receipt in each of the last 12 months.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales paid 90% of undisputed and valid invoices within 10 days of receipt over the last twelve months.

26 Nov 2018, 5:27 p.m. Mental Health Services Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of access to mental health services for individuals who have been involved in a terror attack.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Government and its health partners recognise that it is important to ensure that people who have survived any form of critical incident have appropriate, evidence based mental health support if needed.

It is essential that the mental health response is proportionate to the situation and the specific models of service delivery are a matter for NHS England and the local National Health Service.

We are aware that health systems in London and Manchester are evaluating the response of the NHS and wider economy to their recent terrorist events. We will ensure this learning is shared with the system.

26 Nov 2018, 4:07 p.m. Wales Office: Staff Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, what proportion of employees in his Department identify as (a) male and (b) female; and what the average hourly pay was for staff identifying as (a) male and (b) female in each of the last three years.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The Office of the Secretary of State for Wales (OSSW) is not an employer in its own right. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) provide employment services on our behalf. Currently the MoJ does not collect data on the way in which staff identify their gender, only data relating to their sex.

As at 31 October 2018, 53% of MoJ employees assigned to OSSW were recorded as being female and 47% as being male.

The average hourly pay for staff recorded as (a) male and (b) female at the end of each of the last 3 financial years, is set out below:

Average Hourly Rate

2015/16

2016/17

2017/18

(a) Male

£19.55

£19.02

£20.67

(b) Female

£17.48

£17.20

£19.51

26 Nov 2018, 4:06 p.m. Wales Office: Freedom of Information Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many freedom of information requests his Department has received in each of the last three years.

Answer (Nigel Adams)

The number of freedom of information requests received by the Office of the Secretary of State for Wales is shown below:

Year

Number of FOI Requests Received

2015-16

171

2016-17

121

2017-18

176

26 Nov 2018, 3:25 p.m. Criminal Investigation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many and what proportion of crimes were investigated solely (a) by telephone and (b) online in each territorial police force in each of the last four years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office collects and publishes data on how crimes recorded by police forces in England and Wales have been resolved, which are published quarterly. Latest figures for the year ending June 2018, can be accessed here:
https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/crime-outcomes-in-england-and-wales-year-to-june-2018-data-tables

However, from data received by the Home Office, it is not possible to identify if the crime was investigated by (a) by telephone (b) online.

26 Nov 2018, 2:30 p.m. Social Security Benefits Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the proportion of benefit claimants affected by the benefits cap who are required to seek employment as a condition of their claim.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

The official statistics show that 19% of households who had their Housing Benefit capped in August 2018 were claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance and as such are required to seek employment as a condition of their benefit receipt.

The official statistics also show 51% of households who had their Housing Benefit capped in August 2018 were in receipt of Income Support. Those receiving Income Support and other benefits covered by the cap, are required to take steps towards work as part of their benefit entitlement and they are able to undertake some work. They are expected to attend regular work focussed interviews and undertake activities designed to help them prepare for and move closer to the labour market in return for the financial support they receive through the benefits system.

Between April 2013 and August 2018, 70% (140,000) of households that have previously had their Housing Benefit capped are no longer capped at August 2018. Of these households, 52,000 were exempt with an open Working Tax Credit claim at the time they moved off the cap, indicating that they moved into work. This is 39% of those no longer capped.

The department is unable to provide corresponding figures under Universal Credit. The Department published its Universal Credit experimental statistics future release strategy on the 12 June 2018 in response to the public consultation on future Universal Credit statistics, see https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/universal-credit-statistics-background-information/universal-credit-statistics-release-strategy.

12 Nov 2018, 5:29 p.m. Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: Third Sector Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to incorporate (a) big society and (b) civic society considerations into its policy formulation process.

Answer (Richard Harrington)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on 8th November to Question 186968:

https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2018-11-01/186968/

9 Nov 2018, 2:48 p.m. Prisons: Crimes of Violence and Self-harm Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many incidents of (a) self harm, (b) violence against prisoners and (c) violence against prison staff per 100 prisoners there were in each prison in each of the last five years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The tables show the numbers of self-harm incidents, assault incidents on prisoners, and assault incidents on staff, per 100 prisoners, for each prison from 2013 to 2017 inclusive.

The Government takes very seriously its responsibility to keep prisoners safe, and we are committed to reducing the incidence of self-harm across the estate. This is why we have established a prison safety programme through which we are taking forward a comprehensive set of actions to improve safety in custody. We have invested in over 3,000 additional staff in order to deliver consistent, purposeful regimes. We have also introduced the new key worker role, under which staff can give prisoners more effective challenge and support.

Our prison staff work incredibly hard and we are under no illusions about the challenges they face. We are taking urgent action to make prisons safer, and assaults on our staff will never be tolerated. That is why we are working with the Police and Crown Prosecution Service to ensure successful prosecutions of those who assault them. It is also why the Government supported the recently passed Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act, which increases sentences for those who attack emergency workers, including prison officers.

9 Nov 2018, 9:52 a.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 26 October 2018 to Question 182759 on Universal Credit: Wolverhampton North East, what estimate he has made of the cost of recording the postcode of applicants for universal credit advance payments (a) by telephone, (b) in person and (c) online.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Postcode information for Universal Credit claimants is collected as part of the process of making their Universal Credit claim. However, postcode information for advances requested in person or by telephone is not available as only advances which are paid are recorded. For these awarded advances the postcode information is available. For advances requested online, this information is recorded but is not yet available as the Department is currently quality assuring the data.

8 Nov 2018, 5:32 p.m. Universal Credit: Written Questions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, (a) how many and (b)what proportion of her Department's Answers to Written Parliamentary Questions on universal credit stated that the requested information was (a) not collected and (b) not collected centrally in each of the last three years.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

This information is publically available on the parliamentary website: https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-questions-answers/

A search conducted on the website for the time period 6 November 2015 to 6 November 2018 for answered written questions about Universal Credit that contain the search terms “not collected” or “not collated centrally” returns 29 results, where the answer was either wholly or partially given as either of those terms. This is less than 1.5% of all Parliamentary Questions relating to Universal Credit answered in that time period.

8 Nov 2018, 2:49 p.m. Sleeping Rough Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of rough sleepers in (a) towns and cities with a population above 150,000 and (b) towns and cities with a population of under 150,000 in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

Rough sleeping statistics for England are published at local authority level and are not based on population size. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government publishes this information annually and the latest statistics for autumn 2017 can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/rough-sleeping-in-england-autumn-2017.

8 Nov 2018, 2:43 p.m. Automatic Number Plate Recognition Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many successful (a) fines and (b) prosecutions have been made as a result of evidence obtained from ANPR cameras in each of the last five years.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

The information requested could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

8 Nov 2018, 10:25 a.m. Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Third Sector Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department takes to incorporate big society or civic society considerations into its policy formulation process.

Answer (Mims Davies)

We published the Civil Society Strategy in August 2018. This sets out government's vision for how it will work with and for civil society to address social challenges and create a fairer society for all. In creating the Strategy we engaged widely with central government departments and it includes statements from ten government ministers.

At a departmental level my officials work closely with civil society stakeholders when developing policy, and will continue to work with them in delivering the strategy.

6 Nov 2018, 5:47 p.m. Department of Health and Social Care: Private Finance Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of his Department's projected spend on PFI contracts in 2028.

Answer (Stephen Barclay)

For the financial year 2028/29 the total of estimated Private Finance Initiative (PFI) unitary payments for those projects in the Hospitals and Acute Health sector is £2.52 billion (or £2,515,600,000).

Information on the estimated revenue payments for the lifetime of each PFI contract can be found on HM Treasury’s website at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/private-finance-initiative-and-private-finance-2-projects-2017-summary-data

Future estimated annual PFI unitary payments for each year of a PFI contract are subject to meeting agreed performance and quality standards, contractual variations agreed between the parties, and include an annual increment for inflation, the impact of which can vary between schemes depending on the contract provisions for when it is actually applied during the year.

6 Nov 2018, 3:45 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 31 October 2018 to Question 184391 on Department for Work and Pensions: Contracts, how many contracts her Department has issued with any such clauses in each of the past three years; what proportion of those contracts have been breached; and what sanctions her Department has in place in the event that the clause is breached.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

In the last three years the Department has awarded 366 contracts. Management information on this type of provision is not readily available however the appropriate form of this type of standard provision is widely used in contracts across both the public and private sector.

In the event of any contractual breach the Department would pursue a range of remedies depending on the severity. Remedies range from formal remediation plans, through financial redress to termination of the contract.

To date the Department does not have any instances where a breach of the referenced terms has been pursued.

5 Nov 2018, 5:02 p.m. Public Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the Answer of 29 October to Question 183422 on Public Finance and with reference to his financial statement of 29 October 2018, if he will provide a formal definition of the word austerity; and by what methodology his Department measures austerity in public policy.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

The Budget showed how the hard work of the British people is paying off. Our balanced approach means that our public finances have reached a turning point and austerity is coming to an end. We are providing more support for our vital public services like the NHS, cutting income tax for 32 million people and investing for the long term to boost growth and deliver higher living standards, while remaining committed to fiscal discipline.

5 Nov 2018, 4:26 p.m. Germany: Thalidomide Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent discussions the Government has had with the German government on broadening access for other Europeans to its thalidomide fund.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

The Government is sympathetic to the care needs of UK Thalidomide survivors, who continue to benefit from the £80 million grant, to be paid over 10 years, which was announced by the Department of Health in 2012.

The FCO has helped the Thalidomide Trust to make its own representations to the German Government regarding the possibility of payments for UK Thalidomide survivors. I met representatives of the Trust to discuss this on several occasions. I raised the issue with my German counterpart Michael Roth on 9 July and with the German Ambassador on 23 July, to whom I handed a letter from Simon Hoare MP to Chancellor Merkel on behalf of the House of Commons All Party Thalidomide Group. In response to these representations, the German government has confirmed that UK Thalidomide victims are eligible to apply for compensation from the Contergan Foundation.

I hope to continue discussions with the German government on how it might be made easier for UK survivors to apply for these funds when I visit Berlin later this month.

5 Nov 2018, 3:21 p.m. Pensions: Consumer Information Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when she plans to (a) launch and (b) respond to the proposed consultation on the pensions dashboard.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

As set out in the Autumn Budget, DWP will consult on the detailed design for pensions dashboards, and on how an industry-led approach could harness innovation while protecting consumers.

This consultation will be published shortly. The government will then respond.

5 Nov 2018, 3:17 p.m. G7 Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the factors effecting the UK's position in the G7 growth table.

Answer (John Glen)

Since 2010, our economy has grown for 8 consecutive years and we’ve seen faster growth than France, Italy and Japan over this period. As a result, the UK economy is currently 17.1% larger than it was in 2010, and 10.8% larger than its pre-crisis peak.

The fundamentals of our economy are strong and the independent Office for Budget Responsibility revised up its forecast for cumulative GDP growth at Autumn Budget 2018.

1 Nov 2018, 1:38 p.m. Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will place in the Library research or analysis undertaken or commissioned by his Department on the Brexit dividend.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

Once we have left the EU we will no longer pay annual membership subscriptions and this money will be available to spend on our domestic priorities.

At Budget 2018, the OBR estimated the gap between the financial settlement and the membership counterfactual. This is set out in table 4.30 in the Economic and Fiscal Outlook.

1 Nov 2018, 1:36 p.m. Poverty Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the Answer of 25 October 2018 to Question 182119 on Poverty, what steps he is taking to empower civil servants in his Department deliver on civil service competency 8 delivering value for money in the context of policy formulation relating to poverty reduction.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

HM Treasury carefully considers the impacts of policy choices on households at different levels of income. The department publishes distributional analysis of the impacts of decisions on tax, welfare, and spending on public services at each fiscal event, and has done so since 2010.

The government has set out that it is committed to tackling the root causes of poverty, including education and worklessness. This approach is working, with 1,000,000 fewer people, including 300,000 fewer children, in absolute poverty (before housing costs) since 2010, both record lows.

31 Oct 2018, 5:49 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 25 October 2018 to Question 182118 on Department for Work and Pensions: Contracts, how her Department distinguishes between (a) legitimate statements which are critical of government policy or politicians and (b) statements which may bring the Authority into disrepute or otherwise harm the confidence of the public in Government.

Answer (Justin Tomlinson)

Contractual provisions that impose obligations on suppliers not to harm the reputation of the purchasing authority or otherwise bring it into disrepute are widely used in both the public and private sector and are transparent throughout the tendering process. These provisions ensure that contractors adhere to good working practices and governance, for example by ensuring they do not break employment law or use dangerous, unfair or unethical practices which may bring the Authority into disrepute or harm public confidence. Such provisions do not stop any contract holders or affiliates from criticising any specific government department or government policy.

30 Oct 2018, 5:52 p.m. Prisons: Crimes of Violence and Self-harm Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, with reference the report, Offender management statistics quarterly: April to June 2018, published by his Department on 25 October 2018, what assessment he has made of the factors that have contributed to the increase in recorded (a) assaults, (b) assaults on wardens, and (c) instances of self-harm in prisons.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The causes of self-harm and violence in prisons are complex. They include “imported factors”, such as the characteristics of the population coming into prison, and “custodial factors”, such as the nature of the prison environment and regime.

The Government takes very seriously its responsibility to keep staff and prisoners safe, and we are committed to reducing the incidence of self-harm, suicide and violence across the estate. This is why we have established a prison safety programme through which we are taking forward a comprehensive set of actions to improve safety in custody.

Our prison staff work incredibly hard and we are under no illusions about the challenges they face. Assaults on our staff will never be tolerated. That is why we are working with the Police and Crown Prosecution Service to ensure successful prosecutions of those who assault them. It is also why the Government supported the recently passed Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act, which increases sentences for those who attack emergency workers, including prison officers. We are taking further measures to protect our staff, including investing in 5,600 body-worn cameras and in rigid-bar handcuffs. Early next year we will begin to equip every prison officer in the adult male prison estate with PAVA incapacitant spray. PAVA can help to prevent serious harm to staff and prisoners alike, as well as being a tool to persuade prisoners in the act of violence to stop.

But the key to this must be consistent management of prisoner behaviour with clear expectations.

We have invested in over 3,000 additional staff in order to deliver consistent, purposeful regimes. We have also introduced the new key worker role, under which staff can give prisoners more effective challenge and support. We are taking action in a number of ways to identify and support prisoners at risk, including:

  • rolling out revised and improved training for staff in assessing and managing the risk of suicide and self-harm amongst prisoners (this has already reached more than 17,000 staff);
  • improving support for prisoners in their early days in custody;
  • revising the ACCT case management process for those identified as being at risk; and

renewing our partnership with the Samaritans by confirming a further three years' grant funding for their valuable Listeners Scheme.

30 Oct 2018, 5:10 p.m. Big Lottery Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 22 October 2018 to Question 180106, what the size is of the grant for each recipient named.

Answer (Tracey Crouch)

The National Lottery raises over £1.6 Billion a year for good cause projects across the UK. 40% of this funding is distributed for Big Lottery Fund.

The Big Lottery Fund is the largest funder of community activity in the UK. It funds both large and small charities across every community in the UK.Every year, around 90% of its awards to community projects are for £10,000 or less.

On the attached sheet are the top 30 recipients of the largest grants given by the Big Lottery Fund in each of the last 10 years, and the total size of the grant for each recipient.

30 Oct 2018, 1:33 p.m. Homelessness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, with reference to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation report, Providing personalised support to rough sleepers, what assessment he has made of the viability of personalised support and direct cash transfers as a policy to reduce homelessness and rough sleeping.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

We recognise the importance of providing personalised support and its role in helping people who are rough sleeping or have a history of doing so.

As this is a devolved issue, MHCLG does not cover homelessness and housing policy in Wales and therefore, the following information relates only to England.

In August, we announced funding for ‘navigators’ who will support individuals from their first contact with services through to settled accommodation and will be able to make use of personalised budgets where appropriate. We recently launched a prospectus for our Rapid Rehousing Pathway, which will include navigators and we expect early adopters to start delivering in early 2019.

We are also funding seven Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) to work with long-term rough sleepers who have multiple complex needs towards positive accommodation, employment and health outcomes. The SIB model includes a personalised budget that can be flexibly used to best support individuals to maintain their accommodation and improve their wellbeing.

29 Oct 2018, 5:34 p.m. Emergencies Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many (a) fire incidents, (b) rescue incidents (c) flood incidents and (d) any other emergency incidents have been recorded by his Department in each of the last three years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office published the latest statistics on incidents attended by fire and rescue services in England in 2017/18 on 9 August 2018. The number of fires, rescue incidents, flood incidents and other emergency incidents attended by FRSs in each year are shown in the table below:

2015/16

2016/17

2017/18

Fires

162,247

161,997

167,150

Rescue incidents1

15,619

15,994

16,369

Flooding incidents

13,710

14,111

15,611

Other emergency incidents2

337,852

368,351

365,697

All incidents attended

529,428

560,453

564,827

1 Includes rescue or evacuation from water, lift release, other rescue / release of persons

2 Includes all other non-fire incidents and fire false alarms

29 Oct 2018, 5:33 p.m. Fire and Rescue Services: Staff Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department,how many (a) wholetime, (b) retained and (c) control firefighters were employed in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office published the latest statistics on firefighter numbers in England on 18 October 2018. The number of firefighters (full time equivalent) employed by FRSs in England on the 31st March each year are shown in the table below:

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

Wholetime firefighters

28,166

27,185

26,180

25,098

23,887

22,867

22,580

On-call firefighters

11,513

11,269

10,989

10,828

10,469

9,894

9,760

Fire Control

1,371

1,319

1,232

1,120

1,055

1,043

1,061

29 Oct 2018, 3:47 p.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what her Department's policy is on in-work conditionality for (a) universal credit claimants undergoing managed migration from legacy benefits and 9b) new universal credit claimants.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Universal Credit provides us with the opportunity, for the first time, to support people with low earnings to progress in work. We are developing our understanding of what works to support people to progress through a programme of research and analysis, tests and trials. Outside of the In-work Progression Randomised Controlled Trial, which has now finished, claimants who are in work with earnings above the Administrative Earnings Threshold are not currently expected to undertake any mandatory activity. This applies equally to new Universal Credit claimants and those moving onto Universal Credit from other benefits.

29 Oct 2018, noon Fire and Rescue Services: Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the year on year changes to central government grants to the UK Fire and Rescue service in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

Overall Fire and Rescue Authorities (FRAs) will receive around £2.3 billion in 2018/19. Single purpose FRAs will see an increase in core spending power of 1.2% in cash terms in 2018/19 and an overall increase of 0.3% from 2015/16 to 2019/20.

Financial reserves held by single purpose FRAs increased by 80% to £545 million between 31 March 2011 and 31 March 2018. This is equivalent to 42% of their core spending power.

As fire services are devolved, these figures apply to England only.

26 Oct 2018, 12:38 p.m. Universal Credit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will make an estimate of the level of funding required to cancel the debts of claimants transferred from legacy benefits to universal credit.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Where a person stops claiming Tax Credits and instead claims Universal Credit, DWP will take responsibility for Tax Credits debt that person has, which HMRC has not been able to recover at the point of transfer. This will enable recovery to continue through Universal Credit. As at the end of September 2018, £571m* of Tax Credits debt has transferred. This will increase as Tax Credits claimants move onto Universal Credit. DWP continues to work with HMRC and HM Treasury to better understand the make-up of the Tax Credits debt to be transferred. DWP’s 2017/18 annual accounts noted that £5.9 billion of tax credit debt will transfer across as part of the Universal Credit migration process.

* From DWP internal management information data

23 Oct 2018, 4:40 p.m. Employment and Support Allowance: Maladministration Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of people affected by the errors in the calculation of employment and support allowance made by her Department in each (a) parliamentary constituency and (b) local authority area.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

We are not able to make robust estimates of the numbers of cases likely to be due arrears as part of the exercise to correct underpayments of Employment and Support Allowance, at parliamentary constituency or local authority level. All estimated numbers and amounts are available at national level only.

We are focusing our efforts on contacting all potentially affected individuals to ensure they are paid as quickly as possible.

22 Oct 2018, 8:51 p.m. Big Lottery Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, who were the top 30 recipients of the largest grants given by the Big Lottery Fund in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Tracey Crouch)

The National Lottery raises over £1.6 Billion a year for good cause projects across the UK. 40% of this funding is distributed for Big Lottery Fund.

The Big Lottery Fund is the largest funder of community activity in the UK. It funds both large and small charities across every community in the UK. Every year, around 90% of its awards to community projects are for £10,000 or less.

On the attached sheet are the top 30 recipients of the largest grants given by the Big Lottery Fund in each of the last 10 years.

22 Oct 2018, 5:16 p.m. Television: Licensing Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of pensioners in receipt of free TV licences in each parliamentary constituency in Wales.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The department does not hold data on the number of households in receipt of a free television license broken down by Parliamentary constituency.

The number of households in receipt of winter fuel payment (aged 75 and over) by Parliamentary constituency can be used as a proxy for television license (assuming those in receipt of winter fuel payment have a television) and can be found in the dataset ‘Households by Parliamentary constituency and age, Winter Fuel Payment, 2017 to 2018’ via the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/winter-fuel-payment-recipient-and-household-figures-2017-to-2018

22 Oct 2018, 4:39 p.m. Employment and Support Allowance: Maladministration Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the factors that contributed to her Department's errors in calculating employment support allowance payments; and what procedures are being put into place to minimise the risk of further such errors.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The Department has strengthened its governance arrangements for the identification and management of actual or potential errors, so the impact on individuals can be understood and an appropriate response put in place.

The National Audit Office conducted an investigation into the underpayment errors in transferring people to Employment and Support Allowance from other benefits and the Public Accounts Committee published their recommendations on 18 July 2018. The Department’s response to this investigation was published on 9 October 2018 and is available here: (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/treasury-minutes-october-2018).

22 Oct 2018, 4:33 p.m. Employment and Support Allowance: Arrears Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the announcement, ESA Underpayments: Forecast Numbers Affected, Forecast Expenditure and Progress on Checking, published by her Department on 17 October 2018, what the reasons are for the delay in the estimated completion date of arrears payments to claimants of Employment and Support Allowance.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

As previously announced, those cases identified as part of the initial activity, will be completed by April 2019. The only exception to this is deceased customer cases where the time it takes to identify next of kin means it may take until the end of the year.

The decision in July to review cases back to the point of their conversion to ESA means more claimants will receive payments but requires us to review an additional 250,000 cases. We are now able to confirm that these additional cases will be completed throughout the course of 2019.

22 Oct 2018, 3:55 p.m. Revenue and Customs: Offices Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will publish the (a) location, (b) postcode and (c) number of employees of each the HMRC offices that have (i) closed and (ii) relocated in each year since 2010.

Answer (Mel Stride)

The location, postcode and number of employees of each of the HMRC offices closed in each year from 2010, are detailed in the attached table.

The information requested concerning the number of staff relocated from HMRC offices closed in each year from 2010, can only be provided at a disproportionate cost.

22 Oct 2018, 2:25 p.m. Local Government Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will publish the amount of funding per head of population his Department has allocated to each local authority in ranked order for each year since 2010.

Answer (Rishi Sunak)

Core Spending Power is a measure of the resources available to a local authority to fund its services. It includes Settlement Funding Assessment (business rates baseline funding level plus Revenue Support Grant), Council Tax and other central government grants. There is no consistent measure of Core Spending Power prior to 2015-16. Figures for the period 2015-16 to 2019-20 are available at the below link:
https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/679611/Core_Spending_Power_Supporting_Information.xlsx.

The Department does not publish Core Spending Power per capita. The Office for National Statistics has published population statistics which can be found at the below link:
https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/populationandmigration/populationestimates/datasets/populationestimatesforukenglandandwalesscotlandandnorthernireland.

22 Oct 2018, 12:13 p.m. Internet: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what the 100 wards in Wales were with the lowest proportion of people who had not accessed internet services within the last 6 months in each of the last 3 years.

Answer (Margot James)

My department does not hold the information requested.

18 Oct 2018, 4:21 p.m. Medical Records Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will publish his Department's contractual guidance on the (a) access to and (b) use of data collected by private companies that have contracts with the NHS.

Answer (Stephen Barclay)

In responding to these questions the following distinction is drawn:

- Private providers who bid for and win contracts to provide National Health Service funded health care; and

- Private providers who provide non-NHS funded health care to private patients, funded by the individual or their private health insurer.

Private companies that are awarded contracts to provide NHS services are bound by the same obligations as public providers of NHS care regarding the provision of data for secondary uses. Where a national data collection is established, all contracted providers, whether privately or publicly owned, are required to respond in accordance with the collection guidance issued for that individual collection. The NHS Standard Contract Service terms and conditions require all contracted providers to meet obligations to provide data.

Collections from private providers of NHS health care are not separately addressed, funded or accounted for. There is a specific obligation on all providers whether publicly or privately owned, to comply with data submissions required from NHS Digital. As there is no separation of approach NHS Digital cannot determine how much is spent on accessing data collected from private providers of NHS contracts.

For data collected by private health providers during non-NHS funded care episodes (i.e. privately funded by the individual or funded via private health insurance), NHS Digital do not gather any data currently. Work is under way with the Private Health Information Network to consider this.

18 Oct 2018, 4:21 p.m. Medical Records Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what his Department has spent on accessing data from (a) health authorities and (b) private sector companies that have (i) independently gathered information and data and (ii) gathered information through contracts with the NHS in each of the last three years.

Answer (Stephen Barclay)

In responding to these questions the following distinction is drawn:

- Private providers who bid for and win contracts to provide National Health Service funded health care; and

- Private providers who provide non-NHS funded health care to private patients, funded by the individual or their private health insurer.

Private companies that are awarded contracts to provide NHS services are bound by the same obligations as public providers of NHS care regarding the provision of data for secondary uses. Where a national data collection is established, all contracted providers, whether privately or publicly owned, are required to respond in accordance with the collection guidance issued for that individual collection. The NHS Standard Contract Service terms and conditions require all contracted providers to meet obligations to provide data.

Collections from private providers of NHS health care are not separately addressed, funded or accounted for. There is a specific obligation on all providers whether publicly or privately owned, to comply with data submissions required from NHS Digital. As there is no separation of approach NHS Digital cannot determine how much is spent on accessing data collected from private providers of NHS contracts.

For data collected by private health providers during non-NHS funded care episodes (i.e. privately funded by the individual or funded via private health insurance), NHS Digital do not gather any data currently. Work is under way with the Private Health Information Network to consider this.

18 Oct 2018, 3:04 p.m. Financial Services: Regulation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of amending the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Regulated Activities) Order 2001 to include unregulated financial activity.

Answer (John Glen)

The Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Regulated Activities) Order 2001 specifies the activities that fall within the scope of UK financial services regulation. The Government continues to keep those activities that fall within the scope of the Regulated Activities Order under review.

18 Oct 2018, 2:23 p.m. Financial Services: Tribunals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of establishing a financial services tribunal.

Answer (John Glen)

The Government recognises how important it is for small businesses to have access to the mechanisms they need to settle disputes fairly, should they ever need to make a complaint about their bank.

The Government welcomes the FCA’s policy statement on widening SMEs’ access to the Financial Ombudsman Service, as well as the work being conducted in this area by UK Finance and the All Party Parliamentary Group on Fair Business Banking, and will consider their conclusions this Autumn.

18 Oct 2018, 12:42 p.m. Food: Imports Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 11 October 2018 to Question 176014 on Food: Imports , what assessment he has made of the accuracy of statements made by in the paper, Feeding Britain: Food Security after Brexit on the suspension of food controls.

Answer (David Rutley)

The Government firmly believes it is in the interests of both the EU and the UK to strike a deal. That remains the goal on both sides and we are confident that this will be achieved. However, it is the job of a responsible Government to prepare for all scenarios, including the unlikely event that we reach March 2019 without agreeing a deal. We have already carried out very significant ‘no deal’ preparations and we are now stepping up the pace, including publishing a series of technical notices so that businesses and citizens have time to prepare.

In preparation for our withdrawal from the EU, work is being undertaken across the whole of Government to consider how we best manage border checks and controls in a range of scenarios without impacting the smooth flow of trade. We have been very clear that when we leave the EU, we will categorically not dilute our world leading set of standards on food safety and quality. We are committed to upholding these with robust and independent scientific and technical advice. Any products entering the UK market must meet our high standards of quality and safety.

The UK has a high degree of food security, built on access to a range of sources including strong domestic production and imports from third countries. Consumers will continue to have access to a range of different products when we leave the EU.

9 Oct 2018, 4:29 p.m. Prisons: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many Welsh-speaking staff were employed in each prison in Wales in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

Information on Welsh-speaking staff in prisons is not, and has never been, collected and so the data requested is not available.

Our Welsh Language Scheme is currently under review, and we will continue to work with the Welsh Language Commissioner to ensure that the linguistic needs of Welsh speaking prisoners are met.

9 Oct 2018, 4:02 p.m. Prisons Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, which prisons in England and Wales have operated at a level above their certified normal accommodation in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) publishes monthly individual prison population and capacity information through the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/prison-population-statistics

The following table identifies each prison in England and Wales which has operated with a population above its Certified Normal Accommodation (CNA) on the last working Friday in any month in each of the last seven years.

CNA, or uncrowded capacity, is the Prison Service’s own measure of accommodation. It represents the good, decent standard of accommodation that the Service aspires to provide all prisoners. CNA differs to the Operational Capacity of a prison which is the total number of prisoners that an establishment can hold taking into account control, security and the proper operation of the planned regime. Although CNA is ideal in practice it has in many cases not been possible for the last two decades due to the significant population growth.

Where the Operational Capacity of a prison is higher than the CNA it will be classed as having the potential to be crowded, which can mean prisoners share cells. In the financial year 2017/18, 24.2% of the prison population was being held in crowded conditions, down from 24.5% in the previous year.

We have an ambitious plan to reduce prison crowding by introducing new places that are safe, decent, and uncrowded. In February 2017 HM Prison and Young Offender Institution Berwyn was opened which, when full, will provide 2,100 uncrowded prison places. The government has also committed to building up to 10,000 decent prison places which will provide the physical conditions for Governors to achieve better educational, training and rehabilitative outcomes.

9 Oct 2018, 3:27 p.m. Police: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if he will provide the number of (a) police officers and (b) civilian staff in each territorial police force in Wales in each year since 2010.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office collects and publishes statistics on the number of police officers and police staff employed by each police force in England and Wales on a bi-annual basis. These data are published in the ‘Police workforce, England and Wales’ statistical publication.

Data on the number of police officers and police staff in England and Wales, by police force, as at 31 March each year and going back to March 2007, can be found in the accompanying Open Data Table: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/629362/open-data-table-police-workforce.ods

9 Oct 2018, 3:18 p.m. Packaging: Recycling Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what processes his Department has in place to ensure that exported packaging waste is recycled by the country of destination.

Answer (Dr Thérèse Coffey)

All businesses involved in the export of wastes are required to take all necessary steps to ensure that the waste they ship is managed in an environmentally sound manner throughout its shipment and during its recycling.

There is a system of international rules on waste shipments which must be followed by both UK authorities and those in the country of destination to ultimately ensure the environmentally sound management of waste.

Only exporters accredited by the relevant agency can issue evidence of the recycling of exported packaging waste (PERNs). PERNS can only be issued on waste sent to an approved site (that will operate to standards ‘broadly equivalent’ to those in the EU).

9 Oct 2018, 2:35 p.m. Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the Answer of 11 September 2018 to Question 171310 on Brexit, what proportion of that funding has been allocated to (a) the devolved administrations and (b) local government.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

A full breakdown of how the £1.5bn for 2018/19 was allocated can be found in my Written Ministerial Statement, HCWS540, laid on the 13th March (https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-statement/Commons/2018-03-13/HCWS540/). This includes £73.9 million for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland due to Barnett consequentials. This money will be paid out in Supplementary Estimates 18/19 later this financial year. Departments will be invited to bid for 2019/20 EU Exit preparation funding later in the year. Details of timings and process will be set out in due course.

HM Treasury does not provide funding to local authorities directly. Local authorities receive funding through MHCLG or from departments when their policy imposes costs on the local authority.

18 Sep 2018, 12:22 p.m. Packaging: Recycling Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 10 September 2018 to Question 170273, whether his Department's Waste and Resources Strategy will address the recommendations made in National Audit Office's report, The packaging recycling obligations, HC 1386, published on 23 July 2018.

Answer (Dr Thérèse Coffey)

The Government is considering the National Audit Office’s report carefully and will consult on reforms in due course.

17 Sep 2018, 3:27 p.m. Food Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to minimise the proportion of household income that is spent on food after the UK leaves the EU.

Answer (George Eustice)

The Government does not set retail food prices or comment on the day-to-day commercial decisions made by companies. We work closely with industry to promote transparency for consumers, and internationally to promote open, global markets. The UK sources food from a diverse range of countries, in addition to a strong domestic production base. This will not change when we leave the EU.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) Living Costs and Food Survey includes questions on household spend on food, including that of the lowest 20% income households. The most recent data has shown that the amount that the lowest 20% income households spend on food has fallen to 14.3% in 2016/17 compared with 16% in 2015 (Source Family Spending). These statistics show that it is important to look at all the factors which have an impact on household income such as transport, housing and energy costs.

This Government, through the Department for Work and Pensions is committed to providing a strong safety net of support through the welfare system for disadvantaged families and their children. This includes hardship payments, short term benefit advances, budgeting advances and Social Fund budgeting loans. There is a commitment to spend over £95 billion on working age welfare benefits supporting people out of work or on a low income.

17 Sep 2018, 1:44 p.m. Public Houses Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has made of an assessment of the potential merits of launching a consultation into the long-term viability of the pub industry.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

The government is committed to ensuring the long-term viability of the pub industry.

At Autumn Budget 2017 we continued the £1,000 business rate discount for small and medium pubs in 2018/19, and pubs are benefitting from wider reforms and reductions to business rates – which will provide over £10 billion in support by 2023.

We will continue to evaluate how best to support local pubs as part of the Budget process.

17 Sep 2018, 11:28 a.m. Stem Cells: Donors Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to maximise stem cell donor registration.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Department has provided more than £26 million to NHS Blood and Transplant and Anthony Nolan for stem cell donation since 2011. This funding has supported a number of improvements including: the establishment of a unified stem cell registry called the ‘Anthony Nolan and the NHS Stem Cell Registry’, the identification and recruitment of donors including from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds, and the expansion of cord blood banks.

14 Sep 2018, 1:51 p.m. Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Richard Harrington)

The Department uses a range of surveys and data on well-being when formulating and evaluating its policies. The Office for National Statistics personal well-being questions are also included as measures for the wider Measuring National Well-being programme, which began in November 2010.

The Department has introduced several policies that have a positive impact on national well-being. This includes the Industrial Strategy White Paper, published in November 2017, which aims to boost productivity by backing businesses to create good jobs and increase the earning power of people throughout the UK.

The Industrial Strategy’s Grand Challenge Missions bring government, businesses and organisations across the country together to make a real difference to people’s lives. The Ageing Society Mission is to ensure that people can enjoy at least 5 extra healthy, independent years of life by 2035, while narrowing the gap between the experience of the richest and poorest; and the Clean Growth Mission is to at least halve the energy use of new buildings by 2030.

The Good Work plan, announced in February 2018, set out how for the first time the government will be accountable for good quality work as well as the quantity of jobs, and that government recognises well-being as one of the five principles that underpin quality of work. In addition we have increased the National Living Wage to £7.83, whilst the UK has experienced the lowest unemployment rate since 1975.

14 Sep 2018, 1:48 p.m. Department for Transport: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Ms Nusrat Ghani)

The Government has allocated more than £61bn in transport capital investment over the five years to 2020/21. This is record investment that ensures communities become better connected and journeys become easier and more reliable, in recognition of the vital role that transport plays in people’s lives.

The Department takes forward a number of policies that help promote personal wellbeing, including the recently published Inclusive Transport Strategy which aims to make travel easier for disabled people, and the £1.2bn Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy that aims to make cycling and walking the natural choice for short journeys.

The Department is also supporting the Government’s plan to help tackle loneliness as announced by the Prime Minister in January in response to the Jo Cox Commission. We have contributed £1m to the Building Connections Fund and sit on the cross-government group which will take responsibility for driving action on loneliness across all parts of government and keeping it firmly on the agenda.

The Department uses a wide range of measures that help to inform policy formulation, including evidence drawn from across the ONS. As such, it is not possible to identify all specific instances where the use of ONS estimates of personal wellbeing have been used in the last 12 months.

14 Sep 2018, 1 p.m. Treasury: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

HM Treasury considers a wide range of information when formulating policy, including personal wellbeing statistics. The government has supported living standards through raising the personal allowance and introducing the National Living Wage, and supporting families through the introduction of Tax-Free Childcare.

14 Sep 2018, 11:52 a.m. Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Margot James)

My Department works closely with the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to develop policies that improve well-being.

The ONS wellbeing estimates are incorporated into the DCMS Taking Part Survey. This annual survey is commissioned to provide an evidence source on participation in culture and sport and collects data on well being. The survey is currently used to measure and inform departmental indicators, inform the formulation of DCMS policy, and to understand the drivers of participation in cultural and sporting activities.

Policy formulation also includes policy evaluation. ONS personal well-being data is used to evaluate and monitor the effectiveness of policy interventions. A recent example is the National Citizen Service. The reported personal well being of young people before and after their participation in the service has been evaluated. The results found statistically significant increases.

14 Sep 2018, 11:40 a.m. Department for Education: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

The estimates of personal wellbeing by the Office of National Statistics are an excellent source of data on a range of aspects of children and young people’s lives and we endeavour to use the most relevant information to inform policy thinking wherever it is available.

To improve the wellbeing of children, young people and adults, a number of recent policies have been introduced to make sure that all schools have access to mental health support. This includes 30 hours of free childcare for 3 and 4 year olds, the doubling of primary school’s PE and sport premium to £320 million per year since September 2017, and the investment of up to £26 million in a breakfast club programme which will establish or improve breakfast clubs in over 1,700 schools and will be targeted at the most disadvantaged areas of the country.

14 Sep 2018, 11:26 a.m. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (George Eustice)


In line with the Government’s Green Book, Defra policy is appraised and developed using an assessment of costs and benefits. This appraisal is based on improving well-being. Policy makers and analysts use a range of data sources in making this assessment, which can include ONS estimates of personal well-being.



Defra recognises that the quality of the environment underpins our well-being and prosperity. During the last 12 months we have introduced a range of actions to improve well-being, including those set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan and the Clean Air Strategy.


14 Sep 2018, 10:38 a.m. Department of Health and Social Care: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Steve Brine)

In developing policy, the Department draws on a range of analytical sources, as well as published and unpublished evidence. The Government is committed to improving the health of the population through all its policies.

14 Sep 2018, 10:33 a.m. Currency Speculation: Taxation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of introducing a Spahn tax on currency transactions.

Answer (John Glen)

The Government has made no assessment of introducing a Spahn tax on currency transactions.

As per the Exchange Equalisation Account Act 1979, the Government’s official reserves are available for checking undue fluctuations in the exchange value of sterling.

14 Sep 2018, 10:26 a.m. Child Trust Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what additional resources he is allocating to HMRC to assist parents in locating lost Child Trust Fund accounts.

Answer (Mel Stride)

HMRC allocates resource in a flexible manner to manage emerging pressures by identifying savings and reallocating resources within its overall allocations set by the Treasury. Information on the structure and organisation of HM Revenue and Customs is available at

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/hmrc-annual-report-and-accounts-2017-to-2018

13 Sep 2018, 4:56 p.m. Home Office: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Victoria Atkins)

The Home Office uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal wellbeing when formulating internal policy for Home Office employees.

The Home Office with the wider civil service conducts an annual internal people survey and the wellbeing questions are aligned with those in the Annual Population Survey (APS) conducted by the Office for National Statistics. The Home Office does a comparison of that data with the data collected by the Office for National Statistics to understand the level of wellbeing of its employees. Internal employee policies are formulated taking this into account.

The HO has introduced a range of policies designed to protect citizens and keep our country safe.

13 Sep 2018, 4:45 p.m. Students: Mental Health Services Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the number and proportion of University students who have accessed mental health services through (a) their university and (b) the NHS in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

Higher education providers (HEPs) are not required to submit information on students accessing their mental health services. Students have no obligation to disclose to their institution or any other party if they access NHS mental health services.

Research conducted last year by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) states:

  • 81% of HEPs report an increase in overall demand for student support services, while 41% of HEPs report an increase of over 25%.
  • 94% of HEPs report an increase in demand for counselling services, while 61% of HEPs report an increase of over 25%.

The IPPR research is available at: https://www.ippr.org/publications/not-by-degrees.

The University Mental Health Charter, announced in June, is backed by the government and led by the sector, and will drive up standards in promoting student and staff mental health and wellbeing.

13 Sep 2018, 4:28 p.m. Schools: Equipment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the findings of the National Education Union and Child Poverty Action Group, Child poverty and education: A survey of the experiences of NEU members, what steps his Department is taking to reduce the number of school staff who are personally purchasing equipment for students.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

School staff should not have to purchase equipment for their students. Core funding for schools and high needs is at its highest ever level, having risen from almost £41 billion in the period 2017 to 2018 to £42.4 billion this year. It will rise further to £43.5 billion in the period 2019 to 2020.

Since 2010, there are 637,000 fewer children living in workless households. 75% of children from workless families moved out of poverty when their parents entered into full-time work.

Supported by the National Living Wage, the lowest paid have seen their wages grow by almost 7% above inflation between April 2015 and April 2017. This year, the government raised the Income Tax personal allowance to £11,850.

Under the Labour government, in the period 2009 to 2010, someone working full-time on the minimum wage earned over £10,500 and had to pay £820 to the government in income tax. Under the Conservative government, in the period 2018 to 2019, they earn over £14,200 and would only pay £490.

13 Sep 2018, 4:03 p.m. Criminal Investigation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the total number of criminal investigations dropped within the first 24 hours was by each territorial police force in each of the last five years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office does not hold data on the number of criminal investigations dropped within the first 24 hours of being recorded by the police.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on how crimes recorded by the territorial police forces of England and Wales have been resolved. This data is published quarterly, as part of the “Crime Outcomes in England and Wales” Statistical Release. The latest publication can be found here https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/crime-outcomes-in-england-and-wales-2017-to-2018

In addition, open data tables containing data at police force area level can be found here for the last four years https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-recorded-crime-open-data-tables

The Government expects the police to take all reported crimes seriously, to investigate and, where appropriate, to bring the offenders to court so that they can receive appropriate punishment.

13 Sep 2018, 2:53 p.m. Ministry of Defence: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies his Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Mr Tobias Ellwood)

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) consults relevant National Statistics when formulating policy. The Department's well-being policies are designed to have a positive impact on Service personnel and MOD civilian staff.

In July 2017 the MOD launched the Defence People Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2017-2022, a copy of which can be found at the following address:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/defence-people-mental-health-and-wellbeing-strategy.

13 Sep 2018, 1:39 p.m. Child Trust Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of lost Child Trust Fund accounts by each socio-economic classification.

Answer (John Glen)

I refer the hon. Member to the Answer given on 11 September 2018 for PQ UIN 171312.

13 Sep 2018, 12:31 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: Health Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether her Department uses Office for National Statistics estimates of personal well-being when formulating policy; and what policies her Department has introduced to improve national well-being in the last 12 months.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The services provided by the Department make a positive difference to citizens’ well-being. The Department does this by helping more people into work, providing a simplified benefits system that is easier to access for those who need it most, delivering support to disabled people and providing security in later life.

The Department has used similar measures to the ONS personal well-being estimates, such as data from the Understanding Society survey which influenced the Improving Lives: Helping Workless Families policy paper. This paper published a number of indicators, including poor parental mental health, which measures the proportion of children living with at least one parent reporting symptoms of anxiety and/or depression. DWP has subsequently introduced the Reducing Parental Conflict Programme to address and measure parental conflict, as evidence shows poor relationships between parents can damage children’s outcomes, including their well-being.

In addition, within the programme of trials being delivered by the joint DWP/DHSC Work and Health Unit, well-being outcomes are being collected alongside employment and health outcomes to appraise the success of the trials and influence future policy development.

11 Sep 2018, 4:09 p.m. Child Trust Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of lost Child Trust Fund accounts in each (a) nation and (b) region of the UK.

Answer (John Glen)

HMRC does not have records of, nor have they made any estimations of, CTF accounts where the main contact of the CTF has lost their details, or where the main contact is not aware of the details of their CTF.

Although the primary relationship is between the account provider and the child’s parent, if a parent doesn’t know which provider is managing their child’s account, they can use the following online form to trace the account:

https://www.gov.uk/child-trust-funds

11 Sep 2018, 3:05 p.m. General Practitioners: Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of trends in the level of GPs experiencing mental health illness in each of the last six years.

Answer (Steve Brine)

No formal annual assessment of the trends in the numbers of general practitioners (GPs) experiencing mental health illness in each of the last six years has been made.

In January 2017, NHS England launched the GP Health Service in recognition of GPs reporting they were experiencing stress and mental illness.

The NHS GP Health Service is a nationwide, free confidential NHS service for GPs and GP trainees in England. The service can help doctors with issues relating to a mental health concern, including stress or depression, or an addiction problem, particularly where these might affect work.

Since its launch, over 1,500 GPs have accessed the service, with users consisting of a mixture of some existing patients from the London practitioner health programme and new users.

A 2018 survey of users of the service found that (of those that responded):

- 78% of GPs stated the service had a positive impact on their ability to work or train; and

- 93% of GPs are likely to recommend the service.

11 Sep 2018, 12:55 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of replicating the ring-fenced funding in EU structural funds in the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

The government will establish a UK Shared Prosperity Fund to strengthen productivity across the UK.

Details of the operation and priorities of the Fund will be announced following the Spending Review.

11 Sep 2018, 12:54 p.m. Brexit Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to Operation Yellowhammer, what assessment he has made of the effect of raising no deal contingency planning costs through internal reprioritisation on the ability of Departments to fulfil existing (a) policy and (b) other commitments.

Answer (Elizabeth Truss)

At Autumn Budget 2017 the Chancellor announced an additional £3bn of funding for EU Exit preparation. This funding was intended to cover preparations in the event of both a deal and no-deal scenario. Furthermore, as part of the normal course of business Treasury holds contingency reserves to deal with unexpected pressures.

11 Sep 2018, 12:02 p.m. Students: Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many and what proportion of university students have been diagnosed with a mental health condition.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

Any disclosure of diagnosed mental health conditions by higher education students to their institution is voluntary. The actual number of university students with diagnosed mental health conditions is therefore unknown.

Latest data available from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) for the academic year 2016/17 shows that 57,300 students enrolled at UK Higher Education Institutions had declared that they suffer from a mental health condition, which is 2.5% of all enrolments.

10 Sep 2018, 4:31 p.m. Living Wage Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will increase the national living wage to the rate recommended by the Living Wage Commission.

Answer (Kelly Tolhurst)

Through the National Living Wage, since it was introduced in 2016, the Government has boosted incomes for the lowest paid by £2,000.

We have asked the Low Pay Commission (LPC) to recommend the rate of the National Living Wage such that it reaches 60 per cent of median earnings in 2020, subject to sustained economic growth. In making their recommendations, the LPC draw on a wide range of independent research and stakeholder evidence – including an assessment of the affordability to businesses.

The Government is responsible for setting minimum pay thresholds - and strongly supports employers that choose to pay in excess of the statutory minima.

10 Sep 2018, 4:15 p.m. UK Shared Prosperity Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Written Statement of 24 July 2018 on Local Growth, HLWS898, what the timeframe is for the start of the consultation on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Answer (Jake Berry)

We continue to work on the design and priorities of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund ahead of an intended public consultation later this year, as announced in the Industrial Strategy.

10 Sep 2018, 3:36 p.m. Constituencies Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, when the Government plans to lay the Boundary Commission's recommendations before the House.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The Government received the reports of the four Boundary Commissions on 5 September 2018 and we expect that the reports will be laid before Parliament and made publicly available on Monday 10 September 2018 to allow for the reports to be printed.

24 Jul 2018, 4:02 p.m. EU Grants and Loans Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much each nation and region of the UK received per capita in EU structural funding for the (a) 2007-13 and (b) 2014-2020 reporting periods.

Answer (Kelly Tolhurst)

(a) In the 2007-13 period, the UK was allocated the following amount from EU Structural Funds:

Total allocation

Equivalent per capita allocation

England

£4,344m

£84.5

Scotland

£557m

£107.8

Northern Ireland

£321m

£182.5

Wales

£1,509m

£502.2

(b) In the 2014-20 period, the UK was allocated the following amounts from EU Structural Funds:

Total allocation

Equivalent per capita allocation

England

£5,410m

£99.6

Scotland

£698m

£130.5

Northern Ireland

£400m

£217.4

Wales

£1,881m

£608.5

The level of support for each nation and region depends on its position in relation to the average GDP per capita of all EU member states.

Population data used derived from ONS Population estimates for 2007 and 2014. The foreign exchange rates used were the ones valid at the time of the allocations, i.e. €1=£0.68 for 2007 and €1=£0.78 for 2014.

24 Jul 2018, 2:58 p.m. EU Grants and Loans Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will place in the Library a copy of the consultation process on proposed funding mechanisms which will replace EU structural funding after the UK leaves the EU.

Answer (Jake Berry)

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government continues to develop the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF), a domestic programme of investment to reduce economic inequalities across our four nations following our departure from the European Union.

We will consult widely on the design of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund in 2018, as announced in the Industrial Strategy white paper. The Government has committed to engage with the devolved administrations on the design of the UKSPF prior to this public consultation.

24 Jul 2018, 9:27 a.m. EU Grants and Loans: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, if he will list all the consultation events or meetings he has had with (a) the Welsh Assembly, (b) Welsh local authorities, (c) Welsh businesses, (d) Welsh hon. Members and (e) any other Welsh stakeholders on the proposed UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Answer (Alun Cairns)

I have regular meetings with stakeholders across Wales on matters related to the UK’s Exit from the EU, including on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. It is important we take time to consider the legitimate concerns of businesses, the voluntary sector and communities around the excessive bureaucracy of the current system, and use them to design a fund that works for the whole of the UK, as well as its constituent parts.

23 Jul 2018, 4:52 p.m. Air Force: Alcoholic Drinks and Drugs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the (a) drug and (b) alcohol testing rules are for RAF pilots.

Answer (Mr Tobias Ellwood)

The general requirement for all RAF personnel to be fit for duty is underpinned by the Service Offence of Unfitness or Misconduct through Alcohol and Drugs as set out in Section 20 of the Armed Forces Act 2006, as amended by the Armed Forces Act 2011.

RAF pilots are subject to the same drug and alcohol testing rules as all other RAF personnel with the addition of lower prescribed alcohol limits.

23 Jul 2018, 1:50 p.m. Skilled Workers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether he has made an assessment of the key skills that the UK work force will need over the next (a) 10 and (b) 20 years; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Anne Milton)

The UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) commissioned a series of long-term projections of labour market and skills demand called ‘Working Futures’. The most recent study (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-labour-market-projections-2014-to-2024), published in 2016, covers the UK’s anticipated skills demand up to 2024. Following the closure of UKCES, the Department for Education is currently commissioning the next set of Working Futures projections.

The department will also be publishing the results from the latest Employer Skills Survey this summer. The survey gathers information on the types of skills that employers need now and over the next 12 months.

In addition, the Skills Advisory Panels programme is being rolled out across England. The programme is working with Mayoral Combined Authorities and Local Enterprise Partnerships to give them the capability and tools to produce high-quality skills analysis so that current and future skills provision better meets employer demand at the local level.

23 Jul 2018, 1:39 p.m. Aviation: Alcoholic Drinks and Drugs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what rules are in place for the testing of (a) drugs and (b) alcohol consumption by commercial pilots.

Answer (Jesse Norman)

The Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003 sets out a prescribed alcohol limit for people involved in aviation activities, including flight crew. The Act authorises the police to test flight crew for drugs and alcohol after accidents or incidents, or with due cause at any other time.

Under European aviation safety regulations, all UK Air Operator Certificate (AOC) holders should have a drug and alcohol policy, as part of their Safety Management System. Trained staff carry out screening tests usually by mouth swab, breath, blood, hair or urine sample. A confirmed positive result should be reported to the Civil Aviation Authorities medical department. The Civil Aviation Authority publishes guidance for AOC holders on drug and alcohol policies, including testing, which can be found at www.caa.co.uk/cap1686.

18 Jul 2018, 4:34 p.m. Home Office: Working Conditions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to improve the (a) physical and (b) mental wellbeing of staff employed in her Department.

Answer (Victoria Atkins)

In July 2017 the Home Office launched their health and wellbeing strategy which is aligned with the Civil Service 5 strategic priorities to ;

1. Provide visible leadership for health and wellbeing 2. Encourage an open dialogue leading to action on mental health 3. Promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle 4. Promote national wellbeing campaigns 5. Support people to stay at work or return to work

The strategy incorporates best practice approaches from: World Health Organisation, Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS), National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and Public Health England. The strategy adopts a pragmatic approach to implement actions that are evidence and risk based as research shows this makes the most significant difference in improving health and wellbeing.

For Physical Health we follow the HSE guidelines on 5 steps to risk assessment:

  1. Identify the hazards
  2. Identify who might be harmed
  3. Evaluate the risks
  4. Record our findings
  5. Regularly review risk assessments

Our procedures including a suite of training across the workforce, governance by publication of policies and guidance notes and assurance by way of a schedule of assurance visits and action plans for improvement.

For Mental Health we provide:

  • An Employee Assistance Programme with a 24/7 helpline for employees. Employees can talk to qualified counsellors and this includes talking about any mental health issues affecting relatives or friends
  • ‘Stress Management for Managers’ training and guidance - enabling our managers to identify and manage stress employees may experience in workplace. This is aligned to the ‘HSE Stress Management Standards’.
  • Stress risk assessments - carried out to identify causes and implement agreed solutions and measures to eliminate or reduce the stressors in the workplace
  • ‘Building Organisational Resilience’ training for senior management teams to build their business unit’s resilience at times of changes, traumas and disturbances
  • Trained Mental Health First Aiders - support employees across the business
  • Mental health awareness e learning - for all employees to access
  • Sustaining Resilience at Work - a peer support network, which provides support and assistance to colleagues in times of challenge, stress and pressure.
  • Trauma Risk Management (TRiM) assessors - For parts of our business were there may be a higher risk of traumatic incidents. After a traumatic incident trained TRiM assessors are deployed. They work with HR and line managers to ensure those who need additional immediate support get it. They monitor those whose initial reactions are not severe and provide advice to all employees.
  • The ‘Big White Wall’ - An NHS approved system for employees to have a safe and confidential space to talk about issues they may be facing at work, and how it is affecting them.
  • Employees and line managers are regularly advised to refer to external publications from expert organisations such as:

o Mind – How to support staff who are experiencing a mental problem

o Mental Health Foundation - Bespoke publications which cover a range of mental illnesses

Number 10 commissioned a review of mental health in the workplace. The subsequent report: Thriving at Work: the Stevenson/Farmer review of mental health and employers has made a number of recommendations for the civil service. The Home Office is working with the cross-government group to identify the improvements to be made across the civil service. The Home Office has set up a ‘Mental Health - Thriving at Work Project’ to ensure all the improvements are implemented.

16 Jul 2018, 12:16 p.m. Recycling Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate he has made of the proportion of the cost of recycling borne by (a) manufacturers and producers and (b) consumers.

Answer (Dr Thérèse Coffey)

The Department does not currently hold this information on the proportion of the costs of all recycling borne by manufacturers, producers and consumers. However, under the current Packaging Waste Regulations packaging producers and manufacturers financed £72.6 million in 2017 towards the costs of recycling packaging waste.

In the 25 Year Environment Plan we have committed to reform the producer responsibility system (including the Packaging Waste Regulations) to incentivise producers to take greater responsibility for the environmental impacts of their products. More detail will be announced in the Resources and Waste Strategy, which will be published later this year.

6 Jul 2018, 12:30 p.m. Endometriosis Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many women have been diagnosed with endometriosis in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

No data is held centrally on the number of women diagnosed with endometriosis.

2 Jul 2018, 4:33 p.m. Nuclear Power and Renewable Energy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the reliability of electricity generation by (a) nuclear, (b) wind, (c) solar and (d) tidal energy sources.

Answer (Claire Perry)

In considering the reliability of all generating technologies, the Department draws on content from National Grid. The latest National Grid Electricity Capacity Report (31 May 2017) can be found at:

https://www.emrdeliverybody.com/Lists/Latest%20News/Attachments/116/Electricity%20Capacity%20Report%202017.pdf.

2 Jul 2018, 4:33 p.m. Tidal Power: Swansea Bay Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which dates he or representatives of his Department met Tidal Lagoon Power to discuss the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon project in the last two years.

Answer (Claire Perry)

Over the last two years Tidal Lagoon Power have had meetings with BEIS ministers on 19 April 2016 and 28 September 2016, with Special Advisers on 13 January 2017 and with officials on 5 October 2017. However, across that period there has been other frequent engagement between the company Chair and Chief Executive and senior BEIS officials.

2 Jul 2018, 4:33 p.m. Energy: Prices Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the strike prices were of all major energy projects in the UK since 2012.

Answer (Claire Perry)

The strike prices for all energy projects awarded a Contract for Difference in the UK since 2012 are published on the Government’s website.

The strike prices awarded in CFD Allocation Round 2 are published at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/643560/CFD_allocation_round_2_outcome_FINAL.pdf.

The strike prices awarded in CFD Allocation Round 1 are published at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/407059/Contracts_for_Difference_-_Auction_Results_-_Official_Statistics.pdf.

The strike prices awarded to FIDER enabled CFD projects are published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/record-investments-of-40-billion-in-renewable-electricity-to-bring-green-jobs-and-growth-to-the-uk and the details of the projects awarded those contracts are published at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/305781/Successful_Projects.pdf.

The strike price awarded to Hinkley Point C is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hinkley-point-c.

2 Jul 2018, 1:46 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many posts there have been from official Governmental social media accounts on (a) Facebook, (b) Twitter and (c) any other social media platform to raise awareness of voter registration deadlines in each of the last four years.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The Government recognises that social media can be an effective tool in increasing democratic awareness in all groups, particularly amongst those groups who are less likely to be registered to vote, such as young people.

The primary legal responsibility for maintaining complete and accurate registers lies with Electoral Registration Officers; the Electoral Commission (EC) also has a statutory duty to promote awareness of elections, including registration. In this capacity the EC leads public awareness campaigns on voter registration, notably ahead of elections.

Working in partnership with the EC, Cabinet Office has coordinated cross-Government support for these campaigns. This includes sharing campaign materials through government social media accounts, such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as wider networks. No central record is kept of the volumes of these activities.

In addition to cascading messages on social media, the Government has also funded local authorities and civil society organisations such as Mencap, Bite the Ballot and Operation Black Vote to promote voter registration ahead of polls. Register to vote reminder messages were also added to high traffic GOV.UK pages, such as DVLA and HMRC.

2 Jul 2018, 1:25 p.m. Floods: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an estimate of the total cost of flooding in Denbighshire and Conwy to (a) the private sector, (b) the public sector, and (c) householders over the past 30 years.

Answer (Dr Thérèse Coffey)

Flood management in Wales is a matter for the Welsh Government.

25 Jun 2018, 2:49 p.m. Farmers: Income Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information his Department holds on the average income per farm in (a) Wales, (b) England, (c) Scotland, (d) Northern Ireland and (e) the UK.

Answer (George Eustice)

Defra produces annual estimates of Farm Business Incomes in England with corresponding figures produced by the Welsh Government, Scottish Government and Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs in Northern Ireland.

Farm Business Incomes represent the financial return to all unpaid labour on their capital invested in the farm business, including land and buildings and in essence is the same as Net Profit.

Farm Business Incomes compare the financial position and physical and economic performance of commercial farm businesses.

Average income per farm by country and farm type in 2016/2017 (a) £ per farm

March/February year

England

Wales

Scotland

Northern Ireland

United Kingdom

All farms (incl horticulture)

38,000

24,500

26,500

22,000

33,000

by type: Cereals

43,000

..

20,500

16,500

41,000

General cropping

70,000

..

47,000

27,500

65,000

Dairy

50,000

31,500

34,500

23,500

40,000

Grazing livestock (lowland)

16,000

22,500

18,500

16,500

17,000

Grazing livestock (LFA)

27,000

23,000

23,500

21,500

24,000

Specialist pigs

58,000

..

..

58,500

58,000

Specialist poultry

54,000

..

..

..

54,000

Mixed

29,000

..

24,000

27,500

28,000

. . means 'not available' or 'not applicable'.

(a) Figures rounded to nearest £500

Source: Agriculture in the United Kingdom 2017

25 Jun 2018, 12:58 p.m. Agriculture: Subsidies Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many single farm payments with a value of (a) £500,000-£1,000,000 and (b) over £1,000,000 were delivered via the Common Agricultural Policy in each of the last ten years in each (i) constituent part and (ii) region of the UK.

Answer (George Eustice)

The Rural Payments Agency make payments under CAP within England. Payments to those who claim in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland is a matter for the devolved administrations. A list of UK CAP beneficiaries in the last two years is available on the Defra website.

The data below is for the last full ten scheme years and provides the totals for England, and by NUTS region. Constituency level data can be found on the attached document.

Table 1. Total number of claims >£500k for England

Year

(a) £500k-£1m

(b) >£1m

2016

28

11

2015

24

3

2014

29

5

2013

35

7

2012

33

6

2011

33

11

2010

31

9

2009

35

10

2008

18

8

2007

13

6

Table 2. Payments by region (NUTS)

NUTS Regions

Year

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

East Midlands

£500k-£1m

2

4

4

6

6

6

5

6

2

3

>£1m

4

2

2

2

1

2

2

2

2

1

East of England

£500k-£1

13

11

12

14

14

12

12

14

9

5

>£1m

3

0

1

2

2

5

3

4

2

2

London

£500k-£1m

0

1

2

1

1

1

1

0

0

1

>£1m

1

0

0

1

1

1

1

1

1

0

North East England

£500k-£1m

1

1

1

1

1

0

0

1

1

0

>£1m

1

0

0

0

0

1

1

1

1

1

North West England

£500k-£1m

0

0

0

0

0

1

1

1

1

1

>£1m

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

South East England

£500k-£1m

3

0

1

2

1

3

2

2

1

1

>£1m

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

South West England

£500k-£1m

4

3

4

5

5

4

4

4

1

0

>£1m

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

West Midlands

£500k-£1m

1

1

2

3

3

3

3

3

1

0

>£1m

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Yorkshire & Humber

£500k-£1m

4

3

3

3

2

3

3

4

2

2

>£1m

0

0

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

25 Jun 2018, 11:29 a.m. Personal Independence Payment: Multiple Sclerosis Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of PIP claimants with multiple sclerosis who have had their claims (a) accepted, and (b) rejected since the introduction of PIP.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

As of April 2018, 35,490 claims have been awarded PIP whose main disabling condition was recorded as ‘multiple sclerosis’, whilst 7,080 claims have been disallowed post referral to the Assessment Provider. These figures are based on the initial DWP decision only.

Notes:

  1. This is unpublished data. It should be used with caution and it may be subject to future revision.
  2. Data is based on main disabling condition as recorded on the PIP computer system. Claimants may often have multiple disabling conditions upon which the decision is based but only the primary condition is shown in these statistics.
  3. Claimants’ main disabling condition is only recorded for collation by the Department at assessment. It is not recorded at the point of application. The figures therefore are only for those who have had a disability assessment determination decision.
  4. Figures are based on initial DWP decision only.
  5. Data includes normal rules and special rules for the terminally ill claimants, and is for both new claims and DLA reassessment claims.
  6. Data taken from the PIP computer system’s management information.
  7. Data has been rounded to the nearest 10.
  8. Figures are for Great Britain only.
22 Jun 2018, 11:44 a.m. Home Office: Social Mobility Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department has taken to improve social mobility in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Victoria Atkins)

One of the Government’s key priorities is tackling social mobility. Individuals in our society should be able to progress as far as their talents will take them.

The Home Office plays its part in achieving this by working to create a safe and prosperous environment in the UK, through working to cut crime and the harm that it causes, and by protecting vulnerable people and communities, so that individuals are not prevented from realising their potential.

Full details of our goals and how we are working to achieve them are in our Single Departmental Plan which is available on Gov.uk.

18 Jun 2018, 11:09 a.m. Social Security Benefits: Religious Orders Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the take-up of (a) pension credit, (b) attendance allowance and (c) other social security benefits by people who have served in or are maintained by a religious order.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The information requested is not available.

National Statistics on income-related benefit take-up (including Pension Credit) is published and available at:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/645577/income-related-benefits-estimates-of-take-up-2015-16.pdf

15 Jun 2018, 3:02 p.m. Foetal Alcohol Syndrome Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 11 June 2018 to Question 150586 on foetal alcohol syndrome, what localised data his Department holds on that syndrome.

Answer (Steve Brine)

Only information on individuals with severe cases of foetal alcohol syndrome – those identified at birth - is collected and reported by Public Health England. Therefore there is a significant underestimation of the overall prevalence.

The figures currently available relate to births in 2012-2016, and cover five regions in England: the South West, East Midlands and South Yorkshire, Wessex, Thames Valley, and Northern England (including North East and Cumbria). Prevalence tables by region and year can be found at the following link:

http://www.eurocat-network.eu/prevdata/resultsPdf.aspx?title=A5&allanom=false&allregf=true&allrega=true&anomalies=83&winx=1256&winy=677

A copy of the prevalence tables covering five regions in England is attached.

15 Jun 2018, 1:41 p.m. Tribunals: Costs Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the average cost to the public purse of administering a (a) social security and child support tribunal and (b) a PIP appeal tribunal.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

The information requested is not held centrally. The cost of personal independence payment hearings is included in the overall cost of the First-tier Tribunal (Social Security and Child Support Appeal).

15 Jun 2018, 1:36 p.m. Personal Independence Payment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the allocation of funding is for GP reports on medical records for PIP cases in each year since its inception.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The spending on GP reports of further evidence on medical conditions for PIP cases in each year since the inception of PIP is as follows:

-

13/14

14/15

15/16

16/17

17/18

Total

Total PIP Clearance Volumes

94,091

651,404

706,060

995,841

888,096

3,335,492

GP Further Evidence Volumes

7,905

73,305

100,483

61,383

71,394

314,470

GP further Evidence Cost (£)

264,818

2,455,718

3,366,181

2,056,331

2,391,699

10,534,745

12 Jun 2018, 1:34 p.m. Agriculture Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with representatives of (a) the Welsh Government and (b) other devolved administrations on the farming industry after the UK leaves the EU.

Answer (George Eustice)

Ministers and officials are in regular contact with ministers and officials from all of the Devolved Administrations. The Secretary of State last met Ministers from the Scottish and Welsh governments and senior officials from Northern Ireland on 14 May 2018.

I have also met stakeholder representatives from the Devolved Administrations on 21 March, at one of a series of roundtable meetings held during our agriculture consultation, “Health and Harmony: the future for food, farming and the environment in a Green Brexit” which ended on 8 May.

Agriculture is a devolved responsibility, and it is the government’s intention that each administration has the freedom to design policies that support the individual characteristics of their agricultural sector and their environment. The government has committed to work closely with the Devolved Administrations to deliver an approach that works for the whole of the UK and reflects the needs and individual circumstances of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

11 Jun 2018, 3:50 p.m. NHS: Negligence Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of deaths attributed to medical negligence in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Stephen Barclay)

Open and honest reporting of patient safety incidents is a fundamental pillar of a good patient safety culture. Information on patient safety incidents, including serious incidents which result in severe harm or death, is recorded on the National Reporting and Learning System (NRLS). The primary purpose of the NRLS is to enable learning to continuously improve the safety of patient care.

Data is not collected at a national level on whether reported deaths are due to medical negligence, but NHS Resolution, the body which manages claims against National Health Service organisations and independent sector providers of NHS care in England, has provided the following information:

The number of clinical fatality claims received between 1 April 2000 and 31 March 2017 (by Incident Year) and the number of those which has been successful as at 31 May 2018. The values below five are represented by a ‘*’ symbol:

Incident Year

Number of Claims Registered

Number of Successful Claims

1955/56

*

*

1973/74

*

0

1975/76

*

0

1976/77

*

0

1977/78

*

*

1978/79

*

*

1979/80

*

0

1981/82

*

0

1982/83

*

0

1984/85

*

*

1985/86

*

*

1986/87

5

*

1987/88

*

*

1988/89

9

*

1989/90

10

6

1990/91

14

8

1991/92

25

11

1992/93

28

11

1993/94

27

17

1994/95

55

29

1995/96

65

45

1996/97

91

55

1997/98

186

116

1998/99

344

194

1999/00

470

277

2000/01

590

335

2001/02

677

384

2002/03

679

414

2003/04

707

451

2004/05

750

502

2005/06

824

541

2006/07

872

604

2007/08

942

683

2008/09

1,074

740

2009/10

1,069

696

2010/11

1,216

745

2011/12

1,123

561

2012/13

1,278

384

2013/14

1,157

239

2014/15

909

101

2015/16

614

25

2016/17

149

*

Total

15,986

8,190

Notes:

These numbers only represent claims reported to NHS Resolution; they do not represent an estimate of the total number of deaths attributable to clinical negligence.

This data is for England only and does not include claims made against primary care providers.

11 Jun 2018, 3:15 p.m. Personal Independence Payment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Written Statement of 5 June 2018, on Personal Independence Payments, HCWS733, what the timetable is for the commencement of (a) a pilot scheme and (b) a full rollout of the proposed policy of video recording personal independence payment assessments.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

As part of our commitment to improve the PIP assessment process we are exploring options to video record PIP face to face assessments.

We are starting the test this summer, which will inform wider rollout decisions.

11 Jun 2018, 3:01 p.m. Foetal Alcohol Syndrome Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will list the 20 health authorities in England with the highest incidences of foetal alcohol syndrome in ranked order in (a) 2010 and (b) 2017.

Answer (Steve Brine)

Data is not collected in the format requested.

11 Jun 2018, 1:50 p.m. Department for Work and Pensions: ICT Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Written Statement of 5 June 2018, on Personal Independence Payments, HCWS733, what the timescale is for completion of a DWP-owned IT system.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The current term of the PIP assessment contracts ends in July 2019. It was announced on 6 June 2018 that the DWP would explore options to extend these contracts by approximately two years. Work is already progressing to develop a DWP owned IT capability which will be available to support future provision at that time.

11 Jun 2018, 11:10 a.m. National Institute for Health Research Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding allocated to (a) physical ill health and (b) mental ill health was coordinated through the National Institute for Health Research in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

Information on funding coordinated through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) relating to physical ill-health and mental ill-health is not held in the format requested.

The following data have been supplied by the following NIHR coordinating centres:

- NIHR Central Commissioning Facility

- NIHR Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre

- NIHR Trainees Coordinating Centre

- NIHR Clinical Research Network Coordinating Centre

These centres hold data by Research Activity Classification but do not all disaggregate ill-health, either physical or mental, from normal biological functions and processes, and health service provision. The years for which data are available also vary between centres. Therefore, the following tables show NIHR research spend on mental health research and physical health research since 2014/15, when data is available for all coordinating centres.

Mental health spend

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

Total

£77,872,474

£74,308,876

£77,943,383

Physical health spend (All other spend, i.e.: all spend with mental health spend removed)

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

Total

£761,739,539

£764,314,955

£761,231,502

7 Jun 2018, 9:54 a.m. Electoral Commission Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to the Answer of 21 May 2018 to Question 144210 on Electoral Commission: Fines, on what date the last contact between the Electoral Commission and his Department took place.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

My department has regular contact with the Electoral Commission on a range of issues, including its powers, and keeps those matters under review.

6 Jun 2018, 10:51 a.m. Members Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the right hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington, representing the House of Commons Commission, how many and what proportion of room bookings made by hon. Members were cancelled with less than three sitting days' notice in each of the last three parliamentary sessions.

Answer (Tom Brake)

The House of Commons does not hold this information as there is no facility within the booking system to search for and draw off this information. I have asked officials to contact the hon. Member to discuss any particular concerns he has.

5 Jun 2018, 4:26 p.m. Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Travel Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of the procurement of an aircraft for use when discharging the duties of his office; and if he will provide details of his Department's travel policy.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

There are currently no plans to procure a new aircraft.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office's travel policy is that all staff should travel by the most appropriate means and class of travel according to the demands of their job and to ensure maximum efficiency, remembering that it is public money being spent. Staff must also consider if the journey is necessary and if their aims can be achieved by other means such as video conference, teleconference, or WebEx facilities.

5 Jun 2018, 8:19 a.m. Living Wage: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent estimate he has made of the (a) number and (b) proportion of people in (i) Vale of Clwyd constituency, (ii) North Wales and (iii) Wales who are paid less than the Living Wage Foundation's living wage.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

4 Jun 2018, 4:45 p.m. Personal Independence Payment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many and what proportion of personal independence payment assessments carried out by (a) her Department and (b) other assessors that were rated as (i) acceptable, (b) acceptable with amendments, (c) acceptable with feedback, and (d) unacceptable in each of the last five years.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

PIP assessments are completed by third-party providers rather than the Department itself. We do not rate assessments but we do independently audit assessment reports to ensure that the advice provided to the Department’s Case Managers is of suitable quality, fully explained and justified.

PIP Assessment Provider performance by audit grading can be accessed using the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/work-and-pensions-select-committee-pip-and-esa-assessments-inquiry-supporting-statistics

4 Jun 2018, 3:34 p.m. Electoral Register: Finance Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much central Government funding has been allocated for the purpose of increasing individual electoral registration in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The Government has made a substantial financial commitment to maximising voter registration. This has supported almost 33 million people making an application to register to vote since Individual Electoral Registration was introduced in 2014, ensuring the electoral register is more accurate than ever before.

Since the 2013/2014 financial year, the UK Government has made over £27m available to maximise the number of people on the electoral register. This includes £14 million across 2013/14 and 2014/15 to support the costs of activities at a local and national level. Further to this, £2.5m was allocated to target different audiences in the run-up to the 2015 General Election; along with £3m of additional funding for all EROs in Great Britain to target their non-IER registered carry forward electors in 2015. More recently, up to £7.5m was made available across 2015/16 and 2016/17 for a range of voter registration activities – including funding for local authorities and civil society organisations – in the run up to the EU Referendum.

This figure does not include funding made available to support wider democratic engagement programmes, like those associated with the Suffrage Centenary.

As set out in the Government’s Democratic Engagement Plan, we are continuing to invest in a range of activities and improvements to broaden participation, including the first ever National Democracy Week which will take place this summer (2-8 July).

4 Jun 2018, 2:19 p.m. Pregnancy: Mental Health Services Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 22 May 2018 to Question 143768, what the average waiting time was for women to be treated for mental illness during pregnancy or within the first year of giving birth for each year for which data is available.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The information requested could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

4 Jun 2018, 11:35 a.m. Social Security Benefits: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number of outstanding Social Security and Child Support Tribunals in (a) Caernarfon County Court and Family Court, (b) Prestatyn Justice Centre, (c) Chester Magistrates' Court, (d) Chester Civil and Family Justice Centre and (e) Welshpool County Court and Family Court.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

The information requested is set out in the tables below.

HMCTS VENUES

. Average time (weeks) receipts HMCTS to Outcome1 Personal Independence Payment Appeals2

April - June (Quarter 1) 2017_2018 3

July- September (Quarter 2) 2017_2018 3

October to December (Quarter 3) 2017_2018 3

April to December (Quarter 1-3 ) 2017_2018 3,4

Caernarfon

21

37

40

37

Chester5

19

23

27

22

Prestatyn

33

37

48

39

Welshpool

21

25

31

26

HMCTS VENUES

Outstanding load of all SSCS appeals as at 31st December 2017 3,4

Caernarfon

258

Chester

944

Chester Magistrates' Court

23

Prestatyn

658

Welshpool

46

1 Includes cases cleared with and without a tribunal hearing.

2 Personal Independence Payment (New Claim Appeals) which replaces Disability Living Allowance was introduced on 8 April 2013, also includes Personal Independence Clams (Reassessments).

3 Provisional data

4 The latest period for which data are available

5 Chester venue is Chester Civil Justice Centre. For the period April-December (Quarter 1-3) 2017_2018 there were no PIP clearances for appeals listed for Chester Magistrates Court.

Although care is taken when processing and analysing the data, the details are subject to inaccuracies inherent in any large-scale case management system and are the best data that is available.

The data may differ slightly to that of the published stats as theses data were run on a different date.

Clearance times, and caseload, are dependent on several factors, such as hearing capacity at the venue closest to the appellant, or the local availability of Tribunal panel members. Other factors might include the availability of the appellant or their representative, or the provision of further evidence. Additionally, a decision on the appeal may be reached after a hearing has been adjourned (which may be directed by the judge for a variety of reasons, such as to seek further evidence), or after a hearing has been postponed (again, for a variety of reasons, often at the request of the appellant). An appeal may also have been referred back to the First-tier Tribunal by the Upper Tribunal for disposal.

HMCTS has been working with the Tribunal’s judiciary both to appoint additional judges and panel members and take forward initiatives with potential to increase the capacity and performance of the Tribunal. These include reviewing current listing practices to increase the number of cases being listed on a Tribunal session, and introducing case management “triage” sessions, with the aim of reducing the time taken for appeals to reach final determination. All these measures will increase the capacity of the Tribunal with the aim of reducing waiting times for appellants.

4 Jun 2018, 11:35 a.m. Personal Independence Payment: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the average waiting time for personal independence payments appeals at tribunal in (a) Caernarfon County Court and Family Court, (b) Prestatyn Justice Centre, (c) Chester Magistrates' Court, (d) Chester Civil and Family Justice Centre and (e) Welshpool County Court and Family Court.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

The information requested is set out in the tables below.

HMCTS VENUES

. Average time (weeks) receipts HMCTS to Outcome1 Personal Independence Payment Appeals2

April - June (Quarter 1) 2017_2018 3

July- September (Quarter 2) 2017_2018 3

October to December (Quarter 3) 2017_2018 3

April to December (Quarter 1-3 ) 2017_2018 3,4

Caernarfon

21

37

40

37

Chester5

19

23

27

22

Prestatyn

33

37

48

39

Welshpool

21

25

31

26

HMCTS VENUES

Outstanding load of all SSCS appeals as at 31st December 2017 3,4

Caernarfon

258

Chester

944

Chester Magistrates' Court

23

Prestatyn

658

Welshpool

46

1 Includes cases cleared with and without a tribunal hearing.

2 Personal Independence Payment (New Claim Appeals) which replaces Disability Living Allowance was introduced on 8 April 2013, also includes Personal Independence Clams (Reassessments).

3 Provisional data

4 The latest period for which data are available

5 Chester venue is Chester Civil Justice Centre. For the period April-December (Quarter 1-3) 2017_2018 there were no PIP clearances for appeals listed for Chester Magistrates Court.

Although care is taken when processing and analysing the data, the details are subject to inaccuracies inherent in any large-scale case management system and are the best data that is available.

The data may differ slightly to that of the published stats as theses data were run on a different date.

Clearance times, and caseload, are dependent on several factors, such as hearing capacity at the venue closest to the appellant, or the local availability of Tribunal panel members. Other factors might include the availability of the appellant or their representative, or the provision of further evidence. Additionally, a decision on the appeal may be reached after a hearing has been adjourned (which may be directed by the judge for a variety of reasons, such as to seek further evidence), or after a hearing has been postponed (again, for a variety of reasons, often at the request of the appellant). An appeal may also have been referred back to the First-tier Tribunal by the Upper Tribunal for disposal.

HMCTS has been working with the Tribunal’s judiciary both to appoint additional judges and panel members and take forward initiatives with potential to increase the capacity and performance of the Tribunal. These include reviewing current listing practices to increase the number of cases being listed on a Tribunal session, and introducing case management “triage” sessions, with the aim of reducing the time taken for appeals to reach final determination. All these measures will increase the capacity of the Tribunal with the aim of reducing waiting times for appellants.

4 Jun 2018, 11:30 a.m. Landlords Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how many banning orders for landlords were (a) issued and (b) accepted in each nation and region of the UK in each of the last five years.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

The regulations made under the Housing and Planning Act 2016 introduced banning orders for private landlords and property agents who have been convicted of serious housing, immigration and other criminal offences. The regulations came into force on 6 April 2018 and apply to England only.

A relevant offence must have been committed on or after 6 April 2018 for a local housing authority to be permitted to apply for a banning order. A notice of intent must be made by the local authority within 6 months of the landlord being convicted of the offence followed by an application to the First Tier Tribunal which has the power to issue the banning order.

To date no banning orders have been made by the First Tier Tribunal.

4 Jun 2018, 8:25 a.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the hon. Member for Houghton and Sunderland South, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what steps the Electoral Commission its taking to monitor the effectiveness of electoral registration officers in promoting individual electoral registration.

Answer (Bridget Phillipson)

The Electoral Commission sets performance standards for Electoral Registration Officers (EROs), relating to their duty to maintain accurate and complete electoral registers.

The Commission uses a risk-based approach to inform its monitoring of performance, and provides support and challenge to EROs as needed. It provides guidance and other resources to EROs to support them in promoting electoral registration; this includes examples of innovative tactics used by EROs to encourage applications to register to vote.

29 May 2018, 2:16 p.m. Universal Credit: North Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what progress has been made on the roll-out of universal credit at (a) Rhyl Job Centre and (b) throughout North Wales.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Rhyl Jobcentre rolled out Universal Credit in April 2018. Welsh jobcentres are in the latter part of the rollout schedule and the rollout dates can be viewed in the Universal Credit Transition Rollout Schedule:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/693928/universal-credit-transition-rollout-schedule.pdf

As part of the implementation activities DWP are working closely with local stakeholders including the Welsh Local Government Association and the Welsh Universal Credit Advisory Group to ensure a safe and secure delivery across Wales

We made a written ministerial statement on 22 March 2018 about changes to the Universal Credit rollout schedule (primarily for Welsh speaking sites) to allow for introduction of a Welsh language capability. The written ministerial statement can be accessed at: https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-statements/?page=1&max=20&questiontype=AllQuestions&house=commons%2clords&dept=29&keywords=welsh

25 May 2018, 12:05 p.m. Electoral Register: Fixed Penalties Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many fixed penalty notices local authorities have issued to individuals who have failed to register to vote in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The Cabinet Office does not hold this information. The issuing of fixed penalty notices is at the discretion of individual Electoral Registration Officers. It should be noted that penalties exist for failing to respond to requests for information from EROs (such as not completing a Household Enquiry Form or an Invitation to Register) rather than for failing to register to vote.

25 May 2018, 12:03 p.m. Electoral Register Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many times the Electoral Commission has used its statutory power to make recommendations to central Government to require electoral registration officers to engage in door-to-door canvassing in each year since that power came into effect.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

None.

23 May 2018, 4:45 p.m. Fire And Rescue Services: Procurement Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many (a) powered rescue boats, (b) non-powered rescue boats, (c) wading teams, (d) water incident managers, and (e) high volume pumps have been purchased by fire services in England through Government grants in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (George Eustice)

We do not hold centrally the asset registers of individual Fire and Rescue Authorities. 46 High Volume Pumps were provided by 2016 to FRAs in England under the Home Office New Dimension Programme. Annual grants to support the national resilience HVP capability are paid to 38 authorities under the New Burdens arrangements. Some fire and rescue services have procured their own HVP to facilitate a local response.

The government maintains a national register of over 130 specialist flood rescue teams with associated equipment on standby to be deployed across the country to aid rescue efforts during a flood incident. This includes the voluntary sector and FRAs

When the register was set up in response to the Pitt Review (2008), Defra launched a one-off grant scheme of £2.5m to purchase new flood rescue boats, support the establishment of flood rescue teams and train tactical advisors.

In 2017/18, a total grant of £750,000 was provided to help maintain the assets on the register and for training.

22 May 2018, 1:04 p.m. Temporary Accommodation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made on the amount spent by each local authority on temporary accommodation in each of the last five years.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

The Department publishes data on local authority revenue expenditure and financing. Data is provided to the Department by local authorities, and this collection brings together all documents relating to local authority revenue expenditure and financing. The collection of data can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/local-authority-revenue-expenditure-and-financing

Between 2012/13 and 2016/17 the Revenue Outturn Housing Services (RO4) tables provide information on temporary accommodation income and expenditure for each local authority in England. Figures for each authority can be obtained using a tool built in to each RO4 table.

22 May 2018, 1:03 p.m. Temporary Accommodation Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the average length of stay for people placed in temporary accommodation in each local authority area in each of the last five years.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

Time spent in temporary accommodation means people are getting help and it ensures no family is without a roof over their head.

MHCLG publishes regular statistics on rough sleeping, statutory homelessness, temporary accommodation and homelessness prevention and relief. These are published at national, London and local authority level . The latest statistics can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/homelessness-statistics

We are overhauling the statutory homelessness data collection, as part of the implementation of the Homelessness Reduction Act, to give us better insights into the causes of homelessness and the support people need.

21 May 2018, 4:51 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment she has made of trends in the level of turnover of the membership of personal independence payment appeal tribunals.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) monitors the number of panel members required for Social Security and Child Support appeals. As a result, in 2017/18 and 2018/19 the Judicial Appointments Commission has been recruiting extra judicial office holders to the Social Security and Child Support Tribunal, where Personal Independent Payment appeals are heard, resulting in the following appointments: -

  • 250 fee paid judges (across the First-tier Tribunal)
  • 16 salaried judges
  • 125 disability qualified members
  • 226 medical members

Panel members who sit on Social Security and Child Support appeal panels hear appeals on a range of benefits, one of which is Personal Independence Payment. Information is not held centrally on levels of turnover specific to that benefit.

21 May 2018, 4:49 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, pursuant to the Answer of 11 September 2017 to Question 8402, what assessment he has made the reasons for the increase in the average waiting times for a personal independence payment appeal to be heard between 2013-14 and 2016-17.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) was introduced in 2013 by the Department for Work and Pensions, and extended incrementally over subsequent years. In 2013-14 1,107 appeals were received by Her Majesty’s Courts & Tribunals Service – 104,205 were received in 2016-17. As would be expected, the average age of cleared PIP appeals has increased over this period and performance during 2013-14 cannot be regarded as typical.

17 May 2018, 2:36 p.m. Fires: Domestic Appliances Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many and what proportion of accidental fires in England and Wales were caused by faulty appliances and leads in each of the last last ten years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

The Home Office publishes data on accidental primary fires by cause of fire in table FIRE0605 here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/fire-statistics-data-tables#cause-of-fire

These data are only available from 2010/11 onwards and are for primary fires (excluding secondary and chimney fires) in England only. Fire statistics data for Wales are published by the Welsh government here:

http://gov.wales/statistics-and-research/fire-statistics/?lang=en

Year

Number of accidental primary fires causes by faulty appliances and leads

Proportion of accidental primary fires caused by faulty appliances and leads

2010/11

12,228

19%

2011/12

11,465

19%

2012/13

11,411

21%

2013/14

10,683

19%

2014/15

10,372

19%

2015/16

9,711

18%

2016/17

9,603

18%

9 May 2018, 10:44 a.m. Life Expectancy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what comparative assessment he has made of the UK's ranking in life expectancy at birth for (a) males and (b) females over the last eight years against that of other EU member states.

Answer (Steve Brine)

In 2010, among the 28 European Union countries, the United Kingdom was ranked seventh highest for life expectancy in males at 78.6 years, 1.7 years higher than the EU average (76.9 years). For female life expectancy, the UK was ranked seventeenth highest for life expectancy at 82.6 years, 0.2 years lower than the EU average (82.8 years).

By 2016, for male life expectancy the UK had reduced in rank to tenth highest at 79.4 years, 1.2 years higher than the EU average (78.4 years). For female life expectancy, the UK remained ranked seventeenth highest at 83 years, 0.6 years lower than the EU average (83.6 years). Data on life expectancy by EU country can be accessed via EUROSTAT database. Further information is available here:

http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/data/database?node_code=tps00150

8 May 2018, 3:34 p.m. Life Expectancy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of local authority areas saw a decline in life expectancy for (a) males at birth, (b) females at birth, (c) males at 65 years and older and (d) females at 65 years and older in the reporting period 2001-03 to 2004-06.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

8 May 2018, 10:30 a.m. Welfare State: Reform Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent discussions Ministers of her Department have had with Ministers of the Department of Health and Social Care on the effect of welfare reforms on (a) physical health and (b) mental health.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The DWP and DHSC established the joint Work and Health Unit in 2015 to oversee the Government’s work and health agenda. Our ambition is that we develop a sustainable welfare and employment support system that operates in tandem with the health system and as part of strong wider local partnerships to move people into work when they are ready. The unit is made up of staff from both departments and is accountable to ministers from both departments, and they meet frequently to discuss welfare reform and the wider work and health agenda.
2 May 2018, 3:22 p.m. Home Office: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many and what percentage of employees in her Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Victoria Atkins)

Home Office staff can work from more than one location and can be required to work in a variety of other accommodation not owned or leased by the Department. The Home Office only records the main building staff are assigned to, this shows that 96% (30,247) were assigned to a Home Office Building. The information on where people work is not held centrally and could only be collated at disproportionate cost.

30 Apr 2018, 5:05 p.m. UK Membership of EU: Referendums Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent discussions he has had with representatives of the Electoral Commission on (a) additional funding and (b) additional powers required by the Commission to investigate potential breaches of electoral law during the 2016 European Union Referendum campaign.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The Electoral Commission is an independent organisation. It is funded via Parliament (Speaker’s Committee).

The Government has regular discussions with the Electoral Commission on a range of issues, including its powers, and keeps these matters under review.

30 Apr 2018, 4:14 p.m. Educational Psychology Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many educational psychologists were employed in the (a) public sector and (b) private sector in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

In November 2016, there were 1,368 educational psychologists (EP) that were reported as being directly employed by local authorities in England. This excludes local authorities where EP provision has been outsourced or shared with other local authorities. In addition, individual academies and free schools do obtain private provision.

Information regarding the number of educational psychologists employed in the private sector is not held centrally.

30 Apr 2018, 3:46 p.m. Mental Illness: Children and Young People Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made on the effect of (a) poverty and (b) material deprivation on child and adolescent mental ill health.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The most recent study on the prevalence of the mental health of children and young people in Great Britain was carried out in 2004 and shows that the prevalence of mental disorders was greater among children in families with a gross weekly household income of less than £100 (16%) compared with those with an income of £600 or more (5%). Prevalence rates in the 2004 published full survey are shown in relation to family’s employment status, gross weekly household income, receipt of disability benefits, socio-economic classification, and ACORN classification, a system of segmenting households by levels of prosperity. The survey was carried out by the Office for National Statistics and can be found here:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/aboutus/transparencyandgovernance/freedomofinformationfoi/statisticsonchildhoodandadolescentmentalhealth

The Department has commissioned a new survey on the prevalence of mental disorders among children and young people, due to be published in autumn 2018 by NHS Digital. The survey is planned to include information on mental disorder prevalence in relation to household income quintiles and by the Index of Multiple Deprivation quintiles.

27 Apr 2018, 2:30 p.m. Homelessness: Death Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of the Government recording homeless death statistics at a national level.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

No one should ever have to sleep rough and the death of any rough sleeper is a tragedy. As part of our Rough Sleeping Strategy, we will be considering a wide range of options to support rough sleepers to meet our commitment, which will include the data we gather on them.

27 Apr 2018, 1:19 p.m. Life Expectancy: Males Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to Office for National Statistics data on life expectancy, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the change in life expectancy at birth for males between 2009-11 and 2014-16 in the local authority areas of (a) Torridge, (b) Brentwood, (c) Exeter, (d) Bromsgrove, (e) Denbighshire and (f) Vale of Glamorgan.

Answer (Steve Brine)

Life expectancy for males at birth, in each of these six local authorities was lower in 2014-16 than in 2009-11. The smallest decrease was in Vale of Glamorgan (0.5 years) and the largest in Bromsgrove and Torridge (both 0.9 years). None of these changes were statistically significant.

Between these two time points, male life expectancy at birth for both England and the United Kingdom as a whole increased by 0.8 years.

Life expectancy for females at age 65, in each of these eight local authorities life expectancy was lower in 2014-16 than in 2009-11. The smallest decreases were in Poole, Southampton and Fermanagh and Omagh (all 0.4 years) and the largest was in Stevenage (0.8 years). However, none of these changes were statistically significant.

Between these two time points, female life expectancy at age 65 for both England and the UK as a whole increased by 0.3 years.

Care needs to be taken when analysing and interpreting local authority data as their small populations mean their life expectancy is subject to fluctuations from year to year.

Public Health England (PHE) is working with academic partners to produce a model to help determine underlying trends in life expectancy for all English local authorities. This model will take into account the revised population estimates recently issued by the Office for National Statistics. PHE expects to be able to report on the results of this analysis later in 2018.

27 Apr 2018, 1:19 p.m. Life Expectancy: Females Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the change in life expectancy for females at age 65 between 2009-11 and 2014-16 in the local authority areas of (a) Poole, (b) Southampton, (c) Cheltenham, (d) Lancaster, (e) South Holland, (f) Woking, (g) Stevenage, (h) Fermanagh and (i) Omagh.

Answer (Steve Brine)

Life expectancy for males at birth, in each of these six local authorities was lower in 2014-16 than in 2009-11. The smallest decrease was in Vale of Glamorgan (0.5 years) and the largest in Bromsgrove and Torridge (both 0.9 years). None of these changes were statistically significant.

Between these two time points, male life expectancy at birth for both England and the United Kingdom as a whole increased by 0.8 years.

Life expectancy for females at age 65, in each of these eight local authorities life expectancy was lower in 2014-16 than in 2009-11. The smallest decreases were in Poole, Southampton and Fermanagh and Omagh (all 0.4 years) and the largest was in Stevenage (0.8 years). However, none of these changes were statistically significant.

Between these two time points, female life expectancy at age 65 for both England and the UK as a whole increased by 0.3 years.

Care needs to be taken when analysing and interpreting local authority data as their small populations mean their life expectancy is subject to fluctuations from year to year.

Public Health England (PHE) is working with academic partners to produce a model to help determine underlying trends in life expectancy for all English local authorities. This model will take into account the revised population estimates recently issued by the Office for National Statistics. PHE expects to be able to report on the results of this analysis later in 2018.

25 Apr 2018, 1:39 p.m. Unemployment: North Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of households were classified as without work in each local authority area in north Wales in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

24 Apr 2018, 3:35 p.m. Life Expectancy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will place in the Library all reports and data analyses his Department has produced which relate to life expectancy in each of the last eight years; and whether his Department plans to publish such data and analyses in the future.

Answer (Steve Brine)

A record of all Departmental publications reports and data analyses relating to life expectancy in the eight years is not held centrally and to collate all relevant documents would incur disproportionate cost.

Public Health England is planning to publish analyses of life expectancy in the future, including in the next Health Profile for England which will be released in September 2018.

24 Apr 2018, 3:33 p.m. Life Expectancy: Females Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to Office for National Statistics data on life expectancies, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the change in life expectancy at birth for females between 2009-11 and 2014-16 in (a) Uttesford, (b) Cheltenham, (c) Castle Point, (d) Purbeck, (e) East Staffordshire, and (f) Tendring.

Answer (Steve Brine)

Public Health England (PHE) is working with academic partners to produce a model to help determine underlying trends in life expectancy for all English local authorities. This model will take into account the revised population estimates recently issued by the Office for National Statistics. PHE expects to be able to report on the results of this analysis later in 2018.

Care needs to be taken when analysing and interpreting local authority data as their small populations mean their life expectancy is subject to fluctuations from year to year.

23 Apr 2018, 2:46 p.m. UK Men's Sheds Association Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much funding her Department has given to the UK Men's Sheds Association in each of the last five years.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department does not centrally collate data on funding for the UK Men’s Shed’s Association. This information could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

23 Apr 2018, 11:02 a.m. UK Men's Sheds Association Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many referrals her Department made to the UK Men's Sheds Association from (a) jobseekers allowance and (b) employment and support allowance claimants during the latest period for which data is available.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department does not routinely record data on referrals to UK Men’s Shed’s Association for (a) Jobseeker’s Allowance (b) Employment and Support Allowance. Therefore this information could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

16 Apr 2018, 9:36 a.m. Written Questions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish a ranked list of Departments in order of the proportion of Named Day Questions which they answered on that Named Day excluding holding answers in each of the last three years.

Answer (Sir David Lidington)

The Commons Procedure Committee monitors performance on departments’ response rates to Parliamentary Questions and publishes results on a sessional basis. The latest report for Session 2016-17 was published on the Committee’s website on 15th December 2017. Similar reports are available for previous Sessions.

9 Apr 2018, 10:27 a.m. Cabinet Office: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what organisations his Department has outsourced functions to since 2011.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

All contracts over £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder, which you can find here; https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search

29 Mar 2018, 4:41 p.m. Free School Meals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many children were (a) entitled to, and (b) applied for free school meals in each local authority area in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

The number of pupils eligible for and claiming free school meals is published in the annual ‘Schools, pupils and their characteristics’ statistical release is available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2017.

For 2017, the number and percentage of pupils eligible for and claiming free school meals by local authority can be found in Tables 8a to 8e, in the ‘Local authority and regional tables: SFR28/2017’ section of the annual ‘Schools, pupils and their characteristics: January 2017’ statistical release.

Information for earlier years (from 2010 onwards) is available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-school-and-pupil-numbers.

29 Mar 2018, 2:55 p.m. Personal Independence Payment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of procedures in place to ensure that personal independence payment claimants claiming under special rules receive the correct entitlement of the enhanced rate of the daily living component.

Answer (Sarah Newton)

The award rate for successful claims under the Special Rules for the Terminally Ill can be found within the published date table 3A at, https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/personal-independence-payment-april-2013-to-january-2018. On average these claims are being cleared within 6 working days. These figures show that the current procedures that are in place are working well. Up to the end of January 2018 there are 24037 Personal Independence Payments SRTI claimants entitled to the enhanced rate of the Daily Living Component.

29 Mar 2018, 11:38 a.m. Health Professions: Training Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what training is provided to medical professionals on the effect of (a) diet and (b) lifestyle on (i) diabetes, (ii) obesity, (iii) heart disease, and (iv) mental ill health.

Answer (Stephen Barclay)

Curricula for undergraduate level medical training is set by individual medical schools and are designed to develop the skills and attributes required of doctors to deal effectively with whatever is presented to them.

The training curricula for postgraduate trainee doctors is set by the relevant medical Royal College. Whilst curricula do not necessarily highlight specific conditions for doctors to be aware of, they instead emphasise the skills and approaches that a doctor must develop in order to ensure accurate and timely diagnoses and treatment plans for their patients.

The General Medical Council has the general function of promoting high standards of education and co-ordinating all stages of education to ensure that medical students and newly qualified doctors are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes essential for professional practice.

The majority of health problems are encountered by doctors through routine access to primary care by general practitioners (GPs), whose training curriculum for postgraduate trainee doctors is set by the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP). The curriculum set by the RCGP educates GP trainees in identifying and managing those conditions most common to primary care, and includes clinical modules on promoting health and preventing disease, cardiovascular health and care of people with mental health problems.

28 Mar 2018, 2:03 p.m. Employment Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many (a) men, and (b) women have been in precarious employment in each year since 2011.

Answer (Andrew Griffiths)

The Government does not have a formal definition for precarious employment.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) provides data on various working patterns and contract type (e.g. temporary employees) as part of its Labour Market Statistics, and this data is available by gender:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/uklabourmarket/march2018

27 Mar 2018, 4:17 p.m. General Practitioners: ICT Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment his Department has made of GP’s satisfaction levels with GP clinical IT systems.

Answer (Steve Brine)

The GP Systems of Choice (GPSoC) is a contractual framework to supply IT systems and services to general practitioner (GP) practices and associated organisations in England. It makes sure GPs and practice staff can have access to the best technology to support patient care.

The Framework requires suppliers of GP clinical IT systems in England to implement a service review mechanism. This allows for the conduct of customer satisfaction surveys and the preparation of service reports to provide information on the success of the GPSoC Services from the point of view of the end-user. We have not requested any satisfaction surveys or reports recently.

Further satisfaction surveys of end users of GP clinical IT systems may be undertaken by suppliers or by clinical professional groups representing user groups. As these are not initiated by the Department, no data is held on these.

27 Mar 2018, 4:10 p.m. General Practitioners: ICT Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make an estimate of the cost per patient of the NHS migrating IT clinical systems to a new supplier.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

In England the clinical commissioning group (CCG) fund practice migrations and place the order for the IT systems on behalf of the practice while the Government pays for the essential parts. The CCG or the practice will then pay for additional features. General practitioner (GP) practices can apply to NHS England for reimbursement of costs including the purchase, upgrading and maintenance of IT used by the practice in relation to the delivery of GP services. CCGs are paid a contribution of £2,000 from NHS Digital to support a practice migration. That contribution provides central funding of 25p per patient towards the cost of the average practice migrating to a new supplier.

26 Mar 2018, 3:30 p.m. General Practitioners: ICT Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what support his Department provides to GP practices to help with data migration when transitioning to new IT clinical systems.

Answer (Steve Brine)

As independent contractors, individual general practitioner (GP) practices can choose any IT clinical system that best suits their needs from a range of four principal system suppliers approved by NHS Digital.

While NHS Digital is responsible for the accreditation of any IT clinical system chosen by the GP practice, NHS England expects the supplier to assist GP practices with the migration of data from one system to another.

26 Mar 2018, 3:01 p.m. Personal Independence Payment: Appeals Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the satisfaction levels of claimants during the tribunal stage of the Personal Independence Payments claims process in each of the last two years.

Answer (Lucy Frazer)

HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) does collect data on various types of issue that may be disputed in an appeal before the First-tier Tribunal (Social Security and Child Support) (SSCS). These include entitlement to, or rate of payment of, a particular benefit, such as personal independence payments. However, data on satisfaction levels of claimants is not currently collected centrally.

The Government is investing in the modernisation of our courts and tribunals. The SSCS Track My Appeal project will provide users appealing a social security decision through a tribunal with a digital service which allows them to track their appeal through SMS, email, and an online platform. The digital process will give appellants clear, accessible and regular updates on the progress of their appeal. The new service is due to roll out nationally later this year and HMCTS will collect user satisfaction data on the service.

20 Mar 2018, 5:28 p.m. Schools: Police Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the effect of school police liaison officers on (a) pupil's behaviour, (b) truancy rates and (c) youth crime rates in areas where such officers are deployed.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

The Department has not conducted an assessment and does not hold statistics about the effect of school police liaison officers on pupils’ behaviour, truancy rates and youth crime rates in areas where such officers are deployed.

It is a matter for local police forces to decide their strategy for working with schools. However, we do recognise that police working with schools through initiatives such as the Safer School Partnerships are a proven method for achieving effective joint working between schools and police.

20 Mar 2018, 4:57 p.m. Life Expectancy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the change in the level of local government finance on the geographical variation in life expectancy.

Answer (Rishi Sunak)

Life expectancy is higher now than it has ever been, and is generally increasing in most areas. This Government has made available over £200 billion to councils between 2015/16 and 2019/20 to invest in services including those that support improved life expectancy, such as public health and social care, and we are currently conducting a review of councils’ relative needs to deliver an up-to-date, responsive distribution methodology that will ensure future funding goes to the right places.

20 Mar 2018, 2:41 p.m. Life Expectancy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what information his Department holds on changes in the level of life expectancy of living (a) males and (b) females in each local authority area in the last 10 years.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

15 Mar 2018, 5:10 p.m. Prisoners: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many (a) male and (b) female people ordinarily resident in Wales served custodial sentences in England in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The table below sets out the number of sentenced prisoners held in English prisons with an origin address in Wales since 2009. No data is available for 2008.

Quarter

Sentenced prisoners in English prisons with origin addresses in Wales

Male sentenced prisoners in Welsh prisons with origin addresses outside Wales

Total Population

Female

% of Total Population

Male

% of Total Population

Total

% of Total Population

Total

% of Total Population

2009

173

0.21%

1,568

1.89%

1,741

2.10%

360

0.43%

82,772

2010

191

0.22%

1,722

2.03%

1,913

2.25%

385

0.45%

85,009

2011

193

0.23%

1,509

1.77%

1,702

2.00%

453

0.53%

85,137

2012

209

0.24%

1,597

1.84%

1,806

2.08%

428

0.49%

86,980

2013

200

0.24%

1,769

2.11%

1,969

2.35%

396

0.48%

83,842

2014

201

0.24%

1,709

2.00%

1,910

2.23%

412

0.48%

85,509

2015

215

0.25%

1,660

1.93%

1,875

2.18%

482

0.56%

86,193

2016

220

0.26%

1,610

1.89%

1,830

2.15%

475

0.56%

85,134

2017

221

0.26%

1,567

1.83%

1,788

2.08%

866

1.01%

85,863

The data are based on snapshots and do not provide an indication of all prisoners with origin addresses in Wales who have served/are serving custodial sentences between 2009 and 2017. Furthermore, the data should not be taken to be representative of prisoners who identify as Welsh/English. When allocating prisoners to suitable establishments closeness to home is one of a number of factors considered. We also consider other factors such as length of sentence, security category and offending behaviour requirements. On occasion the offence itself may dictate location, with (for example) sex offenders mainly being held in prisons where they can receive specialist treatment.

All data shown are based on the prison population at either May or June of each representative year. This tool has been designed for high level analytical purposes only. The detail collected is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large-scale recording system. While the figures shown have been checked as far as practicable, they should be regarded as approximate and not necessarily accurate to the last whole number shown in the tables. They are fit to be used for comparing the relative magnitude of components.

Around 97% of prisoners have origin locations. Those with no origin are typically foreign nationals or recently received into custody and have been excluded from this table.

15 Mar 2018, 4:30 p.m. Police Custody: Mental Illness Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many police detentions there have been under section 130 of the Mental Health Act 1983 in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Mr Nick Hurd)

Details of any police involvement in prosecutions instigated by local authorities under section 130 of the Mental Health Act 1983 are not held centrally by the Home Office.

15 Mar 2018, 2:25 p.m. Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster: Written Questions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of his Department's Answers to Written Parliamentary Questions in the 2017-18 Session to date have referred to the information requested not being (a) collected or (b) collated centrally.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer given to PQ120311 on 21st December 2017.

15 Mar 2018, 11:45 a.m. Agriculture: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what proportion of funding available to the Welsh agricultural sector came from (a) the UK Government (b) the European Union and (c) other sources in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (George Eustice)

Defra does not hold information on funding made available to the Welsh agricultural sector as this is a devolved issue. This information is held by the Welsh Government.

14 Mar 2018, 2:24 p.m. Cabinet Office: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The Cabinet Office does not collect and retain information on trade union membership within the department.

14 Mar 2018, 2:23 p.m. Cabinet Office: Fairtrade Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what proportion of his Department's spend on day-to-day goods has comprised fair trade products in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

The information requested is not held centrally.

14 Mar 2018, 11:57 a.m. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: Statistics Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made on the potential merits of data visualisation training to improve his Departmental's analysis of complex statistical data.

Answer (George Eustice)

Defra recognises the merits of data visualisation tools and techniques in the analysis of the range of complex statistical data that informs the department’s work and its formal published statistics.

A range of training courses are currently available to staff, including ‘An introduction to data visualisation’ and ‘Communicating statistics’, which are both offered by the Government Statistical Service Learning Academy. The Royal Statistical Society offers a ‘Foundation level course on data visualisation’.

In addition, the Data Science Accelerator offers the opportunity to develop data science skills including advanced visualisation (like R Shiny, Leaflet and D3).

13 Mar 2018, 3:36 p.m. Local Government Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will meet with Ministers in the devolved administrations to discuss (a) geographical and (b) gender disparity in life expectancy in local authority areas of the UK.

Answer (Steve Brine)

Ministers are always willing to discuss matters of common concern with their colleagues in the devolved administrations.

We recognise that the causes of health inequalities are multi-faceted and highly complex. We take a comprehensive and strategic approach to reducing health inequalities that addresses the root social causes, promotes healthier lifestyles for all and improves the consistency of NHS services.

13 Mar 2018, 12:24 p.m. Life Expectancy Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the projected life expectancy rates for (a) males and (b) females in each 10 year cohort from birth.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

12 Mar 2018, 5:56 p.m. General Elections: Dementia Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many votes cast (a) in person, (b) by proxy and (c) by postal vote were declared void due to the voter being judged to suffer from dementia in each of the last four general elections.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

There are no grounds for rejecting a vote on the basis that the vote was cast by a voter who had dementia and therefore, the Government does not hold any data relevant to this question. It is not possible to determine whether a vote has been cast by a voter with dementia.

12 Mar 2018, 5:26 p.m. Prisoners: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate he has made of the number of (a) male and (b) female people ordinarily resident in England who were serving custodial sentences in Wales in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The table below sets out the number of sentenced prisoners held in Wales with an origin address in England since 2009. No data is available for 2008. As there are no female prisons in Wales the table only shows the number of male sentenced prisoners.

Quarter 1

Male sentenced prisoners in Welsh prisons with origin addresses outside Wales

Total Prison Population

Percentage of total population made up of male sentenced prisoners in Welsh prisons with origin addresses outside Wales

2009

360

82,772

0.43%

2010

385

85,009

0.45%

2011

453

85,137

0.53%

2012

428

86,980

0.49%

2013

396

83,842

0.48%

2014

412

85,509

0.48%

2015

482

86,193

0.56%

2016

475

85,134

0.56%

2017

866

85,863

1.01%

The data are based on snapshots and do not provide an indication of all prisoners with origin addresses in England who have served/are serving custodial sentences between 2009 and 2017. Furthermore, the data should not be taken to be representative of prisoners who identify as Welsh/English. When allocating prisoners to suitable establishments closeness to home is one of a number of factors considered. We also consider other factors such as length of sentence, security category and offending behaviour requirements. On occasion the offence itself may dictate location, with (for example) sex offenders mainly being held in prisons where they can receive specialist treatment.

All data shown are based on the prison population at either May or June of each representative year. This tool has been designed for high level analytical purposes only. The detail collected is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large-scale recording system. While the figures shown have been checked as far as practicable, they should be regarded as approximate and not necessarily accurate to the last whole number shown in the tables. They are fit to be used for comparing the relative magnitude of components.

Around 97% of prisoners have origin locations. Those with no origin are typically foreign nationals or recently received into custody and have been excluded from this table.

The Ministry of Justice is undertaking a programme of large scale prison reform which includes modernising the prison estate, closing older prisons that are not fit for purpose and creating in their place high-quality, rehabilitative establishments. As part of this programme we have started to redevelop the prisons at Glen Parva (Leicestershire) and Wellingborough (Northamptonshire); and we are building a new houseblock at Stocken prison (Rutland).

12 Mar 2018, 4:51 p.m. Compulsorily Detained Psychiatric Patients: Ethnic Groups Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many people were detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 by each ethnic grouping in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Department does not hold the information in the format requested.

12 Mar 2018, 2:21 p.m. Occupational Pensions: Private Sector Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many private sector final salary schemes have been declared failed in every year for which data is available.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

Following a qualifying employer insolvency event, a pension scheme undergoes a Pension Protection Fund ‘assessment period’, where the Pension Protection Fund determine whether it must assume responsibility for the scheme.

The table below lists the number of pension schemes that went into a Pension Protection Fund ‘assessment period’ in the last 12 years.

Year

Number of Schemes that entered PPF assessment

2005-06

73

2006-07

160

2007-08

118

2008-09

136

2009-10

135

2010-11

170

2011-12

129

2012-13

101

2013-14

100

2014-15

58

2015-16

47

2016-17

46

12 Mar 2018, 2:01 p.m. Cabinet Office: Zero Hours Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many (a) full-time staff, (b) part-time staff, (c) temporary staff and (d) any other staff were directly employed on zero-hours contracts by his Department in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

There are no employees in my department who are currently, or have previously been, employed on zero-hours contracts in the last eight years.

The report can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/people-in-employment-on-a-zero-hours-contract-mar-2017

12 Mar 2018, 1:46 p.m. Cabinet Office: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what percentage of employees in his Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Oliver Dowden)

Between January 2017 and December 2017, 20 (0.3%) Cabinet Office staff are registered home workers. 4342 (71%) Cabinet Office staff worked in Cabinet Office accommodation across the country. 1750 (28.7%) of Cabinet Office staff work in another location.

12 Mar 2018, 12:26 p.m. Social Security Benefits: Agriculture Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent assessment she has made of trends in the levels of benefit claims made by people who work in the agricultural sector.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

The Department for Work and Pensions does not hold or collect data on the sector of the economy that its claimants have worked in or currently work in.

12 Mar 2018, 12:19 p.m. Common Agricultural Policy: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate he has made of the percentage of funding for the agricultural sector in Wales that was derived from the common agricultural policy in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (George Eustice)

Information on farming statistics and CAP payments in Wales is a devolved issue and Defra does not hold this data. This information is held by the Welsh Government.

12 Mar 2018, 12:16 p.m. Agriculture: Subsidies Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate he has made of the proportion of UK Common Agricultural Policy funds which was allocated to Wales in each year for which data is available.

Answer (George Eustice)

The proportion of funds allocated to Wales from the UK’s 2014 to 2020 Common Agricultural Policy budget for Direct Payments is 9% and for the Rural Development Programme is 14%.

12 Mar 2018, 11:58 a.m. Cold Weather Payments Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many cold weather payments have been issued to people in (a) Vale of Clwyd constituency, (b) Wales excluding Vale of Clwyd constituency and (c) the UK excluding Wales in each of the last five years.

Answer (Kit Malthouse)

The Cold Weather Payment scheme is administered at weather station level rather than any other standard GB geography such as constituency level. The coverage area for each weather station is determined by the Met Office which assesses the most appropriate weather station for each postcode area. Cold Weather Payments are triggered when the average temperature recorded at the weather station has been recorded as, or is forecast to be, 0oC or below over seven consecutive days.

The estimated numbers of Cold Weather Payments are produced at a weather station level and cannot be broken down further. As a result, estimates given in the tables below are subject to a margin of error when matching to the specified areas.

The postcode areas within (a) Vale of Clwyd constituency are covered by the Hawarden Airport and Rhyl weather stations. Table 1 gives the total estimated number of Cold Weather Payments issued to people in coverage of these weather stations in each of the last five years.

Table 1: Cold Weather Payments in each of the last five years, weather stations covering Vale of Clwyd constituency

Year

2012/13

2013/14

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

Estimated Cold Weather Payments

26,300

0

0

0

0

The weather stations linked solely, or partly, to postcode areas located in Wales are: Aberporth, Capel Curig, Filton, Hawarden Airport, Hereford-Credenhill, Lake Vyrnwy, Mona, Pembrey Sands, Rhyl, Llysdinam (replacing Sennybridge from 2015/16 onwards), Shawbury, St. Athan, Trawsgoed, and Tredegar.

Table 2 gives the total estimated number of Cold Weather Payments issued to people in coverage of these weather stations, excluding any estimated payments for Hawarden Airport and Rhyl weather stations. This gives an approximation of payments issued in (b) Wales excluding Vale of Clwyd constituency.

Table 2: Cold Weather Payments in each of the last five years, weather stations covering Wales excluding Hawarden Airport and Rhyl weather stations

Year

2012/13*

2013/14*

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

Estimated Cold Weather Payments

466,300

0

8,000

0

0

*See note 3.

The Department for Work and Pensions does not produce estimates for Cold Weather Payments issued in Northern Ireland. Cold Weather Payments in Northern Ireland are administered by the Department for Communities.

Table 3 gives the total estimated number of Cold Weather Payments issued to people in England and Scotland in each of the last five years.

Table 3: Cold Weather Payments in each of the last five years, England and Scotland

Year

2012/13*

2013/14*

2014/15

2015/16

2016/17

Estimated Cold Weather Payments

5,352,400

1,100

407,000

155,000

131,000

*See note 3.

Notes

  1. The number of payments given here is an estimate as information on the exact number of payments made is not readily available. These figures are produced by determining the volume of eligible recipients in each weather station area at the start of the winter season and using these figures throughout the winter to estimate payments and expenditure based on the actual triggers recorded.

  1. The number of payments made is not necessarily the total number of individuals benefitting from a Cold Weather Payment. Any individuals making a joint claim for one of the qualifying benefits, such as a couple living together, will receive one payment between them rather than one payment each.

  1. Before 2014/15, estimates of Cold Weather Payments issued by country were not adjusted to take account of weather stations with postcode coverage spanning country borders.
12 Mar 2018, 11:45 a.m. Pension Protection Fund Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will set out the total payments made by the Pension Protection Fund in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The Pension Protection Fund publishes the level of compensation payments made each year in their Annual Report and Accounts.

The table below lists the total compensation payment made in the last 10 years.

Year

Amount

2016 /17

£661m

2015 /16

£616m

2014 /15

£564m

2013 /14

£445m

2012 /13

£332m

2011 /12

£203m

2010 /11

£119m

2009 /10

£82m

2008 /09

£38m

2007 /08

£17m

7 Mar 2018, 5:44 p.m. Department for International Trade: Fair Trade Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what proportion of his Department's spend on day-to-day goods has comprised fair trade products since it was established.

Answer (Greg Hands)

The Department for International Trade is fully committed to ethical procurement, but does not hold information at the level of detail required to answer the question.

7 Mar 2018, 5:12 p.m. Supply Teachers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much money was spent by (a) primary and (b) secondary schools in employing supply teachers in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

The Department publishes the amount spent by schools on supply teaching staff annually for:

Local authority maintained schools on the Department’s School and College Performance website at: https://www.gov.uk/school-performance-tables available for 2010-11 to 2016-17; and

Academies in the Department’s Statistical First Release ‘Income and expenditure in academies in England’ at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-local-authority-school-finance-data#academy-spending available since 2011/12, when they were first collected in this format, up to 2015/16. Data for 2016/17 will published in the summer of 2018.

The Department is working with Crown Commercial Service to develop a commercial framework for agency supply teachers to support schools with ensuring value for money when using agency staff. The framework is expected to be available for schools to use from September 2018.

7 Mar 2018, 4:59 p.m. Supply Teachers Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the names of all supply teacher agencies registered with his Department in each year for which data is available.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

The Department does not register supply teacher agencies. However, the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) do have a list of agencies that currently hold the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) Audited Education status. This is available on line and maintained by REC: https://www.rec.uk.com/business-support/audited/audited-members-directory.

To support schools to achieve value for money when using supply agencies, we are working with CCS to develop a commercial framework for agency supply teachers. The framework will bring transparency to agency margins and require agencies to adhere to standard levels of practice, including the use of temp-to-perm fees. The framework is expected to be available for schools to use from September 2018.

7 Mar 2018, 4:26 p.m. Classroom Assistants Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of trends in the use of (a) higher level teacher assistants and (b) cover supervisors to cover teaching absences.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

The Department collects information on the number of higher level teaching assistants and cover supervisors employed in schools. However, no information is available on the amount of time these staff spend covering teaching absences.

The full-time equivalent number of contracted staff whose role is defined as that of ‘higher level teaching assistant’ or of ‘cover supervisor’, employed by state funded schools in England, November 2010 to 2016 is provided in the table below.

State Funded Schools

Higher Level Teaching Assistant

Cover Supervisor

November

2010

11,040

..

2011

12,150

7,490

2012

13,380

8,010

2013

14,650

8,000

2014

15,850

8,100

2015

16,410

7,970

2016

17,140

7,640

Source: School Workforce Census
Figures are rounded to the nearest 10.

6 Mar 2018, 2:49 p.m. Orthopaedics: Diabetes Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many (a) diabetes-related limb removal procedures and (b) non-diabetes-related limb removal procedures took place in each of the last 10 years.

Answer (Steve Brine)

NHS Digital was able to provide the following data that details the count of finished consultant episodes (FCE) with a primary diagnosis of diabetes and a main procedure of amputation, for the financial years between 2007-08 and 2016-17.

Due to clinical coding limitations, NHS Digital was unable to provide data for non-diabetes related limb removal procedures that took place in each of the last 10 years as it is not possible to determine if an amputation is not related to the diagnosis of diabetes in some way.

Year

FCEs

2007-08

2,001

2008-09

2,070

2009-10

2,070

2010-11

2,238

2011-12

2,253

2012-13

1,686

2013-14

1,544

2014-15

1,682

2015-16

1,790

2016-17

2,042

Source: Hospital Episode Statistics, NHS Digital

Note:

A FCE is a continuous period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider. FCEs are counted against the year in which they end. Figures do not represent the number of different patients, as a person may have more than one episode of care within the same stay in hospital or in different stays in the same year.

6 Mar 2018, 1:28 p.m. Department for International Trade: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each year since his Department's formation.

Answer (Greg Hands)

The Department for International Trade (DIT) was established in July 2016. The percentage of workers who are trade union members is not held by DIT.

6 Mar 2018, 1:12 p.m. Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many and what proportion of staff in her Department worked in (a) departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) in any other location in each of the last five years for which figures are available.

Answer (George Eustice)

The proportion of where staff are located in the department is shown in the table below:

Financial Year (31 March)

Departmental Accommodation

From Home

Other Locations

2014/15

96.7%

2.4%

1.0%

2015/16

96.2%

3.4%

0.4%

2016/17

95.8%

3.6%

0.6%

2017/18 (31 Jan 2018)

97.4%

2.3%

0.3%

Data has only been collected centrally since the 2014/15 financial year and is based on those payroll staff receiving the Home-Based allowance.

The department supports flexible working and work-life balance allowing employees to fulfil their roles and responsibilities while working remotely. These flexible working arrangements are agreed locally and would likely result in some employees working from home at times but their main location of work would be recorded as “Departmental Accommodation”. These arrangements are not factored into the data provided in the above table.

5 Mar 2018, 5:04 p.m. Supply Teachers: Training Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the (a) adequacy and (b) extent of the provision of safeguarding training provided by supply teacher agencies in the UK.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Schools are responsible for ensuring that all staff, including supply staff, are aware of their safeguarding responsibilities. ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ statutory safeguarding guidance makes clear that all staff should read ‘Part One - Safeguarding information for all staff at induction’. It also requests that governing bodies/proprietors ensure that mechanisms are in place to support staff to understand and discharge their role and responsibilities as set out in Part One. The guidance states that all staff should receive safeguarding and child protection training at induction.

Before placing a member of staff a supply agency must request sufficient information, including the experience, references, training, and qualifications the school needs for the post or that are required by law.

To help schools achieve best value when using supply agencies the Department is working with the Crown Commercial Service to develop a commercial framework for agency supply teachers. Together with other requirements the framework will ensure that agencies adhere to standard levels of practice. The framework is expected to be available for schools to use from September 2018.

5 Mar 2018, 4:46 p.m. Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Answer (Jake Berry)

The Department does not have a complete set of data for this information as we are not notified of individuals who may choose to pay their trade union membership via direct debit and as such is unable to answer your question.

5 Mar 2018, 4:43 p.m. Minimum Wage: Wales Chris Ruane

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate his Department has made of the number of employers in Wales who paid national minimum wage arrears in each of the last seven years.

Answer (Mel Stride)

The government is clear that everyone who is entitled to the National Minimum and Living Wage (NMW) should receive it. Anyone who feels they have been underpaid NMW should contact the Acas helpline on 0300 123 1100. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) review all complaints that are referred to them.

HMRC does not record statistics on complaints or investigations by reference to countries of the United Kingdom, Government regions, constituencies or counties.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) undertook a more detailed analysis of NMW enforcement by workplace regions over the 2015/16 and 2016/17 financial years for the government evidence to the Low Pay Commission (LPC). Information on NMW enforcement by workplace regions for earlier years is not readily available. The data included in the LPC regional analysis is limited to the arrears identified in HMRC investigations. Furthermore, the workplace regions in the analysis relate to the employer’s registered trading address, and not necessarily where the NMW arrears occurred or where the affected workers were based.

Further information can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/561779/beis-16-37-national-minimum-wage-government-evidence-for-lpc-autumn-2016-report.pdf

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/630197/nmw-nlw-lpc-evidence-compliance-enforcement-2017.pdf

5 Mar 2018, 4:22 p.m. Suicide Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of people who have committed suicide who had (a) visited their GP, (b) visited a general hospital, and (c) accessed NHS psychiatric services in the 3 months before their death in each of the last 5 years.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

This information is not held centrally.

5 Mar 2018, 4:15 p.m. NHS: Private Companies Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will publish his Department's contractual guidance on the (a) access and (b) use of big data collected by private companies contracted to the NHS.

Answer (Jackie Doyle-Price)

The Department recently published the updated standard National Health Service Terms and Conditions which reflect the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The NHS Terms and Conditions require suppliers to the NHS to comply with the Procurement Policy Note 03/17 Changes to Data Protection Legislation and General Data Protection Regulation (PPN) published by the Government Crown Commercial Service. This PPN places an obligation on the contracting authority to take certain steps to ensure suppliers are compliant with GDPR (ensuring security of personal data) in existing contracts and for contracts awarded after 25 May 2018.

5 Mar 2018, 9:48 a.m. Personal Income Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will publish the year-on-year changes to average weekly incomes in each constituency in each of the last 5 years.

Answer (Chloe Smith)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

2 Mar 2018, 2:59 p.m. Department for Transport: Zero Hours Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many (a) full-time staff, (b) part-time staff, (c) temporary staff and (d) any other staff were directly employed on zero-hours contracts by his Department in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Ms Nusrat Ghani)

The Department (including Central department and Executive Agencies) has had no full-time, part-time, temporary or any other staff employed on zero-hours contracts during the last eight years.

2 Mar 2018, 2:55 p.m. Ministry of Justice: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, to which organisations his Department has outsourced functions since 2011.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The requested information is not stored centrally. The MoJ would be required to write to each business within MoJ to advise what works has been outsourced since 2011 and the information requested could therefore only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

2 Mar 2018, 2:55 p.m. Ministry of Justice: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The only data held on this is at December 2014 when the number of staff within the MoJ (including HMPPS) that were members of trades unions was 43,286 which equated to 63.21% of staff numbers. Following the removal of check-off as a method of payment for members to pay for union subscriptions, it is no longer possible for the department to verify the numbers of staff that are currently trade union members.

2 Mar 2018, 2:54 p.m. Department for International Trade: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, to which organisations his Department has outsourced functions since 2011.

Answer (Greg Hands)

The Department for International Trade has not outsourced any core internal functions since it was formally established in 2016 but we did inherit some outsourced contracts from UK Trade and Investment and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

These included some contracts related to Trade promotion work in the UK, and overseas, and corporate services such as HR, IT and Finance functions.

A portion of these contracts have been re-negotiated or re-let since the Department was formed.

2 Mar 2018, 2:54 p.m. Ministry of Justice: Zero Hours Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many (a) full-time staff, (b) part-time staff, (c) temporary staff and (d) any other staff were employed directly by his Department on zero-hours contracts in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The table below shows the number of individuals working in MOJ and HMPPS who were placed on zero hours contracts over the specified time period. Currently those individuals on zero hours contracts within MOJ are scheduled court ushers who are working within HMCTS.

Snapshot date

Total

MOJ

HMPPS2

31/1/2017

21

21

0

31/12/2016

26

25

1

31/12/20151

30

27

3

31/01/2015

73

66

7

31/12/2013

120

120

0

31/12/2012

140

140

0

31/12/2011

172

172

0

  1. MOJ Snapshot of data taken in 12 month intervals on the 31st of December each year other than 2014 which is a snapshot on the 31st of January 2015. This is because of missing data.
  2. HMPPS data taken as a snapshot at 31st March of each year.
2 Mar 2018, 2:47 p.m. Department for International Trade: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, how many and what percentage of employees in his Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Greg Hands)

The table below sets out the number of employees of the Department for International Trade (DIT), including UK Export Finance, and on payroll, as at 31 January 2018. The total also includes those people working for DIT, based overseas, and paid via the FCO payroll.

Number of employees

%

(a)

Departmental accommodation

1724

54%

(b)

Home workers (UKEF)

23

1%

(c)

Other location

1434

45%

Departmental accommodation is defined as locations occupied and assigned to DIT within the UK. Other location is defined as accommodation that DIT uses principally for overseas staff, which include Embassies and other consular accommodation.

The department operates a range of flexible working arrangements available to employees including home working. Those who have a formal home worker contract are shown above.

2 Mar 2018, 2:39 p.m. Department for Education: Zero Hours Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many (a) full-time staff, (b) part-time staff, (c) temporary staff and (d) any other staff were directly employed on zero-hours contracts by his Department in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Anne Milton)

The department does not directly employ any staff on zero hours contracts, and has not done so in any of the last eight years.

2 Mar 2018, 2:27 p.m. Department for Education: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Answer (Anne Milton)

The information requested is not held centrally.

2 Mar 2018, 2:20 p.m. Ministry of Justice: Fair Trade Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what proportion of his Department's spend on day-to-day goods comprised fair trade products in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Rory Stewart)

The information requested could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

2 Mar 2018, 2:01 p.m. Department for Education: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many and what percentage of employees in his Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Anne Milton)

The information requested is not held centrally.

All department employees have access to a number of flexible working arrangements dependent on the role, which are agreed locally with line managers.

2 Mar 2018, 1:58 p.m. Department for Education: Fairtrade Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of his Department's spend on day-to-day goods has comprised fair trade products in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Anne Milton)

The information requested is not held centrally.

2 Mar 2018, 1:56 p.m. Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many and what percentage of employees in his Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

We do not centrally hold details of the numbers of employees working from home or another remote location. Staff are able to agree flexible working arrangements with their line managers. To provide this would require us to gather information from individuals in the United Kingdom and across the world. The cost of doing this would be disproportionate and would exceed the appropriate limit.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office supports efficient flexible working for all its employees.

2 Mar 2018, 1:55 p.m. Department for Education: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what organisations his Department has outsourced functions to since 2011.

Answer (Anne Milton)

Since 2011, the department has entered shared services arrangements for two functions – the management of its estate and its human resources casework support. These are both with the Ministry of Justice. It has also outsourced two activities. The first was the analysis of 2016 key stage 2 science sampling test outcomes. This is a biennial activity and was outsourced to the National Foundation for Educational Research in 2016. The second activity is the administration of student support programmes for young people. This was contracted to Capita in 2015. The contract is currently out for re-tendering again with a start date of 2019.

2 Mar 2018, 1:55 p.m. Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Zero Hours Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many (a) full-time staff, (b) part-time staff, (c) temporary staff and (d) any other staff were employed directly by his Department on zero-hours contracts in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

Our centrally held records do not enable us to differentiate between staff on zero hours contracts and other fee paid officers where a fixed number of hours has been specified in their contracts. We are therefore unable to state how many staff were employed on zero hours contracts over the past eight years.

2 Mar 2018, 1:47 p.m. Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

​This information is not held by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Staff pay subscriptions themselves to their trade union.

2 Mar 2018, 1:45 p.m. Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, to which organisations his Department has outsourced functions since 2011.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has outsourced the service integration and management of its Global IT providers via BAE Systems since 2013.

More individual overseas posts might also have put local outsourcing arrangements in place, but we do not hold the data for this centrally, and it would incur disproportionate cost to provide an answer on that basis.

2 Mar 2018, 1:36 p.m. Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Private Finance Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what proportion of his Department's spend on day-to-day goods comprised fair trade products in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Sir Alan Duncan)

​The Foreign and Commonwealth Office does not centrally hold data on the proportion of expenditure on fair trade products.

2 Mar 2018, 1:35 p.m. Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many and what percentage of employees in his Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Margot James)

At 1st January 2018 the breakdown of DCMS staff is as follows:

Departmental accommodation

880

Satellite offices and Government hubs*

29

Percentage

3.3%

These figures include permanent staff, those staff on fixed term contracts, those staff on loan/secondment into DCMS, those staff on paid maternity leave, and temps and interim staff.

*Includes staff working from home

2 Mar 2018, 1:18 p.m. Treasury: Fairtrade Initiative Chris Ruane

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what proportion of his Department's spend on day-to-day goods comprised fair trade products in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

We cannot aggregate day-to-day spend comprised of fair trade products due to not holding this data centrally. Our accommodation and stationery products are purchased through a third-party supplier.

2 Mar 2018, 1:17 p.m. Treasury: Trade Unions Chris Ruane

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what percentage of workers employed directly by his Department belonged to a trade union in each of the last five years for which data is available.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

The information requested is not available.

2 Mar 2018, 1:15 p.m. Treasury: Zero Hours Contracts Chris Ruane

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many (a) full-time staff, (b) part-time staff, (c) temporary staff and (d) any other staff were employed directly by his Department on zero-hours contracts in each of the last eight years.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

The department has not employed anyone on a zero hours contract in the last 8 years

2 Mar 2018, 1:11 p.m. Treasury: Flexible Working Chris Ruane

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many and what percentage of employees in his Department worked (a) in departmental accommodation, (b) from home and (c) at any other location in the most recent 12-month period for which data is available.

Answer (Robert Jenrick)

HM Treasury does not hold the information requested. The Department operates a Flexible Working policy which allows employees to work remotely subject to line manager appro