Andrew Bridgen Portrait

Andrew Bridgen

Independent - North West Leicestershire

First elected: 6th May 2010


Public Order Bill
25th May 2022 - 21st Jun 2022
Regulatory Reform
6th Nov 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Liaison Committee (Commons)
21st Oct 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Regulatory Reform
12th Oct 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Regulatory Reform
21st Oct 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Regulatory Reform
26th Jul 2010 - 30th Mar 2015
Draft Deregulation Bill (Joint Committee)
10th Jul 2013 - 11th Dec 2013


Oral Question
Monday 26th February 2024
14:30
Home Office
Topical Question No. 8
If he will make a statement on his departmental responsibilities.
Save to Calendar
Division Votes
Tuesday 20th February 2024
Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill
voted No
One of 1 Independent No votes vs 6 Independent Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 226 Noes - 287
Speeches
Thursday 22nd February 2024
Post Office Horizon Scandal
The Minister is a perceptive man: he must see the problem of his reassuring the House from the Dispatch Box …
Written Answers
Friday 9th February 2024
Illicit Tobacco Taskforce: Police
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has made an assessment of the potential merits of including representatives …
Early Day Motions
Monday 12th March 2018
INVESTIGATION INTO THE CONDUCT OF MR SPEAKER
That this House calls for an independent investigation into the allegations of bullying made against Mr Speaker.
Bills
Tuesday 24th October 2023
Parliamentary Sovereignty (Referendums) Bill 2022-23
A Bill to prohibit Ministers of the Crown from making or implementing any legal instrument which is not consistent with …
MP Financial Interests
Monday 30th October 2023
2. (b) Any other support not included in Category 2(a)
Name of donor: Jeremy Hosking
Address of donor: private
Amount of donation or nature and value if donation in kind: …
EDM signed
Tuesday 9th January 2024
Sub-postmasters
That this House notes the increased awareness of the life-changing injustices experienced by sub-postmasters throughout the Horizon scandal; further notes …
Supported Legislation
Wednesday 2nd May 2018
Victims of Terrorism (Pensions and Other Support) Bill 2017-19
The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Andrew Bridgen has voted in 751 divisions, and 13 times against the majority of their Party.

22 Mar 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 29 Conservative Aye votes vs 318 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 300 Noes - 318
22 Mar 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 26 Conservative No votes vs 318 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 319 Noes - 297
9 Feb 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative No votes vs 318 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 318 Noes - 303
19 Jan 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 34 Conservative No votes vs 319 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 319 Noes - 308
1 Dec 2020 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 53 Conservative No votes vs 290 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 291 Noes - 78
10 Mar 2020 - Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 36 Conservative Aye votes vs 301 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 282 Noes - 306
30 Nov 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 19 Conservative No votes vs 268 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 434 Noes - 23
30 Nov 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 32 Conservative No votes vs 259 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 431 Noes - 36
14 Dec 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 38 Conservative No votes vs 271 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 441 Noes - 41
14 Dec 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 97 Conservative No votes vs 224 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 369 Noes - 126
14 Dec 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 60 Conservative No votes vs 258 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 385 Noes - 100
22 Jun 2022 - Health and Personal Social Services - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 61 Conservative No votes vs 106 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 215 Noes - 70
18 Oct 2022 - Public Order Bill - View Vote Context
Andrew Bridgen voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 103 Conservative No votes vs 113 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 297 Noes - 110
View All Andrew Bridgen Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

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

Sparring Partners
Penny Mordaunt (Conservative)
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
(46 debate interactions)
Kevin Hollinrake (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
(16 debate interactions)
Jacob Rees-Mogg (Conservative)
(14 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Leader of the House
(37 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(32 debate contributions)
Department for Business and Trade
(28 debate contributions)
Home Office
(23 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Andrew Bridgen's debates

North West Leicestershire Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Petitions with highest North West Leicestershire signature proportion
Petitions with most North West Leicestershire signatures
Petition Debates Contributed

We are concerned that Parliament has not discussed and will not have a say on the 307 proposed amendments to the International Health Regulations, AND the amendments to 5 Articles of the IHR that were ADOPTED by the 75th World Health Assembly on 27 May 2022.

We want the Government to commit to not signing any international treaty on pandemic prevention and preparedness established by the World Health Organization (WHO), unless this is approved through a public referendum.

There has been a significant increase in heart attacks and related health issues since the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccines began in 2021. This needs immediate and full scientific investigation to establish if there is any possible link with the Covid-19 vaccination rollout.

We ask Parliament to repeal the High Speed Rail Bills, 2016 and 2019, as MPs voted on misleading environmental, financial and timetable information provided by the Dept of Transport and HS2 Ltd. It fails to address the conditions of the Paris Accord and costs have risen from £56bn to over £100bn.


Latest EDMs signed by Andrew Bridgen

8th January 2024
Andrew Bridgen signed this EDM on Tuesday 9th January 2024

Sub-postmasters

Tabled by: Kate Osborne (Labour - Jarrow)
That this House notes the increased awareness of the life-changing injustices experienced by sub-postmasters throughout the Horizon scandal; further notes it is now known as the most widespread miscarriage of justice in British history; notes with concern that sub-postmasters have served custodial sentences, suffered bankruptcy for offences they did not …
89 signatures
(Most recent: 6 Feb 2024)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 41
Scottish National Party: 16
Liberal Democrat: 12
Independent: 9
Democratic Unionist Party: 4
Plaid Cymru: 3
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 2
Alliance: 1
Alba Party: 1
Conservative: 1
Green Party: 1
29th November 2023
Andrew Bridgen signed this EDM on Tuesday 5th December 2023

Verification of gestational age for at-home abortions

Tabled by: Carla Lockhart (Democratic Unionist Party - Upper Bann)
That this House welcomes the introduction of the At Home Early Medical Abortion (Review) Bill [HL] that seeks a review into the risks to women of at-home abortion under current law; expresses its support for the Bill; calls on the Government to reinstate in-person medical appointments before abortion pills may …
20 signatures
(Most recent: 21 Feb 2024)
Signatures by party:
Democratic Unionist Party: 8
Conservative: 6
Independent: 3
Scottish National Party: 2
View All Andrew Bridgen's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Andrew Bridgen, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

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


Andrew Bridgen has not been granted any Urgent Questions

3 Adjournment Debates led by Andrew Bridgen

Friday 20th October 2023
Friday 17th March 2023
Tuesday 13th December 2022

2 Bills introduced by Andrew Bridgen


The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will make no further progress.

Commons - 40%

Last Event - 2nd Reading: House Of Commons
Friday 11th February 2011

A Bill to prohibit Ministers of the Crown from making or implementing any legal instrument which is not consistent with the sovereignty of the United Kingdom Parliament, unless it has been approved by a referendum; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading
Tuesday 24th October 2023
(Read Debate)

160 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
4 Other Department Questions
1st Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if her Department will make an assessment of the potential merits of requesting that the Gambling Commission list knowledge of the gambling industry as a formal requirement in job adverts for Commissioners.

Appointments to the Gambling Commission are made in accordance with the Governance Code for Public Appointments. The Code states that Ministers must be consulted before a competition opens to agree the job description for the role. The requirements of all roles are carefully based on the needs of each organisation and the existing skills and experience on boards, while ensuring that roles attract applications from the broadest range of suitable candidates possible.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
27th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether any Gambling Commissioners have left the Board (a) on expiry of their term of office and (b) through resignation in the last two months.

No Commissioners have left the Gambling Commission in the last two months.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when she plans to publish the gambling white paper; and which Minister in her Department will be responsible for that white paper.

The Gambling Act Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure gambling regulation is fit for the digital age. We will publish a White Paper setting out our vision and next steps in the coming weeks. The minister responsible for gambling will be announced soon.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
19th Feb 2021
To ask the hon. Member for Perth and North Perthshire, representing the House of Commons Commission, whether the Commission holds details of the pension entitlements for former Speaker John Bercow.

The Commission does not hold details of the pension entitlement of former Speaker John Bercow.

Pension entitlements in relation to a Member’s service as an MP, Minister or Office Holder are held by the Trustees of the Parliamentary Contributory Pension Fund (PCPF).

The pension entitlement available for MPs under the PCPF is set out in a House of Commons Library briefing note available at:
MPs' Pension Scheme - House of Commons Library (parliament.uk)

The annual pension entitlements for Ministers and Office Holders and the separate arrangement for former Speakers are set out in a House of Commons Library briefing note available at:
Pensions of ministers and senior office holders - House of Commons Library (parliament.uk)

Pension entitlement in respect of service as a former Speaker prior to the Public Service Pension Act 2013 are paid from the Consolidated Fund. Details of these pension payments are in the Consolidated Fund accounts, available at:
CF_Annual_Accounts_2019-20.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk)

12th Jun 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, on how many occasions (a) ministers and (b) officials held meetings with Bill Gates in each year since 2010; and what the reasons were for those meetings; and who was present at each of those meetings.

Details of Ministers’ and Permanent Secretaries' meetings with external individuals and organisations are published quarterly in arrears on GOV.UK. Published declarations include the purpose of the meeting and the names of any additional external organisations or individuals in attendance.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
6th Mar 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many deaths by suicide there were in (a) North West Leicestershire constituency, (b) the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland NHS trust, (c) the East Midlands and (d) England and Wales in each month of each of the last five years.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 6 March is attached.

22nd Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what was the average age of death from all causes, broken down by month, for each of the last 5 years for which figures are available.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 22 February is attached.

22nd Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many stillbirths were recorded, broken down by month, for each of the past five years for which figures are available.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 22 February is attached.

24th Jan 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, when mortality by vaccination status data will be issued for (a) all of 2022 and (b) January 2023.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 24 January is attached.

9th Jan 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the age standardised mortality rates were by covid-19 vaccination status for children aged 10 to 14 per 100,000 people in the period since January 2021.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 9 January 2023 is attached.

17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, how many times her Department has instigated an investigation into breaches of the regulators code under the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Act 2006 in the last five years.

The Regulators Code is established under the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Act 2006, sections 21 to 24. The Act does not make provision for investigations into adherence by a regulator with the principles of the Code. No data is therefore available.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether Ofgem has taken recent steps to encourage companies to sell (a) solar and (b) other forms of renewable energy back to the grid.

The Government encourages companies and members of the public to sell solar energy back to the grid in many ways. Smaller scale energy generators can export renewable electricity to the grid under the Smart Export Guarantee, while larger scale generators can apply for a Contract for Difference.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps she is taking to ensure that access to the electricity grid through Distribution Network Operators is consistent.

As set out in the Connections Action Plan published in November 2023, Government and Ofgem are working with Distribution Network Operators to ensure consistency and standardisation across distribution networks. This includes a review by Ofgem of the incentives, obligations and requirements that apply to the electricity network connection process, and work to standardise the approach to connections.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
18th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment her Department has made of the potential (a) merits and (b) costs of linking the UK's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) to the EU's ETS.

The Government recognises the importance of international co-operation on carbon pricing, and is keen to work with European partners to understand better the interactions between the UK Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) and the EU Emissions Trading System as they expand and develop in parallel. In this context, the Government remains open to the possibility of linking the UK ETS internationally.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology what information her Department holds on the number of shares in Eutelsat that are owned by the Chinese government.

The Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) is the lead department for OneWeb and its associated policy and is responding in place of the Department for Business and Trade.

According to last available data from June 2023, the Chinese Investment Corporation (CIC) held 7,561,000 shares, equivalent to c. 1.6% of Eutelsat Group’s total shares. Eutelsat Group is a publicly traded company and the number of shares held by CIC may have changed since June. The CIC has never been represented on its Board nor has it had access to any privileged information on Eutelsat or OneWeb’s operations.

13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, how much funding her Department has provided to Oneweb; and how that funding has been used.

The Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) is the lead department for OneWeb and its associated policy and is responding in place of the Department for Business and Trade.

HM Government made an equity investment of $500 million in OneWeb in 2020, securing a strategic investment stake and preferential UK rights to OneWeb manufacturing and supply chains on a commercial basis. This was drawn down over the period July 2020 to August 2023 to meet company cash requirements ahead of OneWeb’s merger with Eutelsat. These funds supported the successful delivery of OneWeb’s first-generation constellation – completed earlier this year – and establishing provision of associated services.

27th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with representatives of energy companies on the use of smart meters that have ceased to operate in smart mode and are underestimating future energy bills.

Smart meters, which are temporarily operating in traditional mode continue to accurately record energy consumption. With manual meter readings provided to the energy supplier, customers will continue to receive accurate bills.

Energy suppliers are required by their licence conditions to take all reasonable steps to ensure their customers’ smart meters are fully functional, which includes providing automatic meter readings. The Government works closely with energy suppliers and other industry parties, so that that households across Great Britain can realise the benefits of smart meters.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
31st May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to help ensure that people who live on mobile home sites receive energy grants rather than the site owner.

The Government is aware that not all households have electricity provided through a domestic electricity supply contract, such as mobile home residents. The Government raised this in its technical consultation on the Energy Bills Support Scheme. Households without a domestic electricity supply contract are not eligible for the scheme and the Government is exploring options for other ways in which they might receive similar support. The responses to this consultation are being analysed and a response will be published later in the summer.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
25th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is planning to take to support fish and chip shops; and what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the finding by the National Federation of Fish Friers that one third of those shops are likely to close in the coming months.

We recognise the impact the pandemic and inflation is having on businesses of all sizes and the Government is in regular contact with business groups and suppliers to understand the challenges they face and explore ways to protect businesses.

This Department is working closely with Defra, who lead on food supply chain and is in regular discussions with the National Federation of Fish Friers to understand better the impacts on hospitality businesses including fish and chip shops.

2nd Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with (a) the electric vehicles industry and (b) local authorities on provision for electric vehicle charging points for properties with no off-street parking provision.

The Government continues to work closely with vehicle manufactures on the transition to zero emission vehicles.

Ministers regularly engage with industry, including vehicle manufacturers, energy companies and chargepoint operators as well as local authorities (LAs) regarding electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure. For example, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister hosted an event at the Global Investment Summit on 19 October which was attended by leading British and global companies involved in the UK’s electric vehicle revolution. The meeting was attended by my Rt. Hon. Friends the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the Secretary of State for Transport, and the Secretary of State for International Trade, and by my Hon. Friend the Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury.

The Secretary of State for Transport wrote to the chief executives of all UK LAs in February this year to update them on the funding available to them. My Hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under Secretary for Transport also wrote to the Chief Executives and Leaders of 20 councils that had a lower than average chargepoint per head of population to encourage them to engage with OZEV officials. Since this letter, officials have hosted several meetings with members of these councils, providing support and advice. Officials from the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV) have a programme of activities to engage and support LAs, to help mainstream local capability and leadership and ensure LAs are working to support chargepoint rollout in their areas.

Lee Rowley
Minister of State (Minister for Housing)
20th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he plans to implement further measures to prevent the use of postcode location centroids that are determined on private property.

BEIS has responsibility for the Arms Length Bodies who collect, curate, and maintain the foundational data that underpins the use of post codes and addressing.

Ordnance Survey (working in a consortium of members including Royal Mail, Office for National Statistics, Ordnance Survey Northern Ireland, National Records of Scotland) publishes 1.7m centroids for postcodes across the UK.

The location of the postcode centroid is automatically generated by averaging more granular address data and 'snapping' to the nearest address – which includes residential properties – in order to ensure it sits on a building, rather than potentially in the middle of a road, a lake or a field. This was designed to support the primary use case for post code and address-based navigation (i.e. getting to the right approximate location). Ordnance Survey are currently exploring how they locate the centroid for postcodes in their Code Point products and would welcome engagement from any interested parties.

Ordnance Survey also publishes the location of every individual address in its AddressBase products, which is used by emergency services and delivery companies to navigate to the correct property more efficiently and effectively.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much the special shareholder approved in the Post Office Horizon litigation; and whether the special shareholder took into account the amount claimants were asking for in the settlement mediation.

The Government is pleased that a resolution has been reached between the parties to settle this long-running litigation and the steps they have taken through the mediation talks. Postmasters are the backbone of the Post Office, and their branches are vital to communities across the country. That is why Government takes Post Office Limited's (POL) relationship with its postmasters very seriously.

On 11 December following mediation talks, the parties to the litigation agreed a settlement figure of £57.75m. Government was not party to the mediation discussions. The agreed settlement included all legal and other costs, The settlement was funded entirely by POL’s commercial revenues. The Government as shareholder specifically required that government funding was not used for this purpose.

Given the nature and scale of the settlement payment, the Government did approve the final figure.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the Horizon software litigation, whether the Government has provided Post Office Ltd with funds in addition to the £57 million cost of that litigation.

The Government is pleased that a resolution has been reached between the parties to settle this long-running litigation and the steps they have taken through the mediation talks. Postmasters are the backbone of the Post Office, and their branches are vital to communities across the country. That is why Government takes Post Office Limited's (POL) relationship with its postmasters very seriously.

On 11 December following mediation talks, the parties to the litigation agreed a settlement figure of £57.75m. Government was not party to the mediation discussions. The agreed settlement included all legal and other costs, The settlement was funded entirely by POL’s commercial revenues. The Government as shareholder specifically required that government funding was not used for this purpose.

21st Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has made an assessment of the reasons for which the the Gambling Commission contracted with the National Institute of Economic and Social Research to research the costs and benefits of gambling, with a focus on gambling-related harm; and what the cost of that contract was to the Gambling Commission.

I apologise for the delay in responding to this question.

The Gambling Commission did not sign a contract with the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NiESR). In this case, NiESR was a recipient of £140,050 in regulatory settlement funding.

Regulatory settlements are a possible outcome of Gambling Commission enforcement action and may include a financial amount paid by the operator for socially responsible purposes which address gambling-related harms. The Commission does not take possession of regulatory settlement funds at any time and the money is paid directly from the operator(s) to the organisation delivering the approved project.

More information on this process and the destinations of regulatory settlement funding is available at the Commission’s website.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
24th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has had discussions with the (a) British Horseracing Authority and (b) Gambling Commission on the impact of (i) affordability checks and (ii) personal data requirements on the horse racing levy.

In preparing the gambling white paper, the government is giving full consideration to the impact of proposals, including on the Horserace Betting Levy, and ministers and officials have held regular meetings with both the British Horseracing Authority and the Gambling Commission. The white paper which we will publish in the coming weeks, and any subsequent consultations, will include the necessary assessments of impacts. Government has also committed to review the Horserace Betting Levy by 2024 to ensure the sport is suitably funded for the future.

6th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Answer of 3 October 2022 to Question 51665 on Gambling: Addictions, if she will ask the Gambling Commission to publish its assessment of the Public Health England report on social and economic costs associated with gambling-related harms.

The Gambling Commission is not required to produce an assessment of the work of other public bodies, and, unless formally requested to do so, it is not required to provide formal advice to the Department on its views regarding particular pieces of research or evidence. However, DCMS officials have regular discussions with the Commission on a range of issues relating to gambling regulation and the evidence on gambling, and this has included the Public Health England evidence report.

6th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to her Answer of 3 October 2022 to Question 51665 on Gambling: Addictions, for what reasons the Gambling Commission did not inform her Department that it considered Public Health England’s estimate of the number of suicides in England associated with problem gambling to be inaccurate.

The Gambling Commission is not required to produce an assessment of the work of other public bodies, and, unless formally requested to do so, it is not required to provide formal advice to the Department on its views regarding particular pieces of research or evidence. However, DCMS officials have regular discussions with the Commission on a range of issues relating to gambling regulation and the evidence on gambling, and this has included the Public Health England evidence report.

20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Government response to the Fan-Led Review of Football Governance, published on 25 April 2022, CP 658, whether she still plans to implement the recommendations of that review; and if she will make a statement.

The Government published its response to the recommendations made by the Independent Fan Led Review of Football Governance in April 2022. We absolutely recognise the need for football to be reformed to ensure the game’s sustainability in the long term. We are now taking the time to consider the policy, but we remain committed to publishing a White Paper setting out our detailed response to the fan led review of football governance, and will set this out in due course.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the potential merits of implementing a levy on bookmakers' profits from football bets to distribute to (a) the English Football League and (b) grassroots football.

The Government currently has no plans to introduce a requirement for gambling operators to pay a fee or levy to football or other sporting bodies. The Government invests millions into grassroots sport facilities via the Football Foundation alongside the Football Association and the Premier League. In addition to the £18m of government support this provides annually, in 2021 the government announced a further £25m investment to improve and upgrade grassroots facilities across the UK to ensure that every community in the country has access to the sports pitches they need by 2030.

The recent Fan Led Review of Football Governance stressed the importance of greater financial redistribution throughout the football pyramid. We are working with the football authorities to ensure an appropriate solution on financial distributions is found, which will protect the financial health of all football clubs throughout the football pyramid.

8th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has instructed the Gambling Commission to impose rules or guidance on betting operators to subject their customers to affordability checks.

The Gambling Commission is the independent regulator for the gambling industry. As part of its responsibilities it issues a social responsibility code, including the requirement that operators identify and interact with customers who are experiencing or at risk of experiencing harm.

In 2021, the Gambling Commission closed a consultation and call for evidence on Remote Customer Interaction, including the specific issue of affordability checks. In its consultation response, the Commission confirmed it will conduct a further consultation on specific steps operators should take to tackle three key risks associated with financial harm. The response can be found here.

The Government cannot issue instructions to the Commission on how it fulfils its statutory duties or what to include in its guidance and codes, but we have worked closely on this issue in the run up to publishing our white paper on the Review of the Gambling Act 2005 to make sure any proposed changes are joined up.

27th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions officials in her Department have had with representatives of sports governing bodies on awareness of colour blindness and steps to differentiate team colours.

My department has not had any recent discussions with representatives of sports governing bodies on awareness of colour blindness and steps to differentiate team colours. However, I welcome the English Football League’s (EFL) recent decision to allow clubs to wear away kits at home games next season in order to aid colour-blind people in differentiating teams. This will benefit players, staff, officials and spectators.

The Government recognises there are barriers which exist and prevent some people from taking part and we want to continue to do all that we can to tackle these. We will continue to work with our arms length bodies, Sport England and UK Sport, and sector partners to encourage sport bodies to make sport more accessible to spectators, participants and the workforce.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
25th Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has made an assessment of the relative impact of a statutory levy to fund research, education and treatment into gambling addiction on land-based operators who carry fixed costs and support large numbers of local jobs in their venues, as compared to online operators.

The Government’s Review of the Gambling Act called for evidence on how best to recoup the regulatory and societal costs of problem gambling. We will publish a white paper outlining our proposals for reform and vision for the sector in the coming weeks.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
25th Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has made an assessment of the potential merits of alternatives to a statutory levy on casinos to fund research, education and treatment of gambling addiction.

The Government’s Review of the Gambling Act called for evidence on how best to recoup the regulatory and societal costs of problem gambling. We will publish a white paper outlining our proposals for reform and vision for the sector in the coming weeks.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
25th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department plans to review the regulation of Prize Draws as part of the Gambling Review.

The framework for society lotteries is set out in the Gambling Act 2005 (the Act). Section 14 of the Act generally defines a lottery as requiring payment to participate, an outcome determined wholly by chance, and the allocation of prizes.

Large society lotteries are subject to strict sales and prize limits, and operate under a licence issued by the Gambling Commission. They are also required to provide a minimum return to good causes.

Some products, such as prize competitions and free draws may resemble lotteries but do not meet the definition of a lottery under section 14 of the Act. This might be due to a free entry route or because there is an element of skill involved. Since free draws do not meet the definition of a lottery, they are not considered gambling for the purposes of the Act and the Gambling Commission has no regulatory responsibilities for these products, but it does monitor the boundary between them and society lotteries to ensure that products are regulated when required by the Act.

The Government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 in December 2020 with the publication of a Call for Evidence. We received over 16,000 responses, and we are considering all the evidence carefully. The Review is wide-ranging and evidence-led, and aims to make sure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. We are currently carefully considering all submitted evidence and a white paper will be published in the coming weeks.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
25th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if her Department will make a comparative assessment of the regulation of Society Lotteries and Prize Draws.

The framework for society lotteries is set out in the Gambling Act 2005 (the Act). Section 14 of the Act generally defines a lottery as requiring payment to participate, an outcome determined wholly by chance, and the allocation of prizes.

Large society lotteries are subject to strict sales and prize limits, and operate under a licence issued by the Gambling Commission. They are also required to provide a minimum return to good causes.

Some products, such as prize competitions and free draws may resemble lotteries but do not meet the definition of a lottery under section 14 of the Act. This might be due to a free entry route or because there is an element of skill involved. Since free draws do not meet the definition of a lottery, they are not considered gambling for the purposes of the Act and the Gambling Commission has no regulatory responsibilities for these products, but it does monitor the boundary between them and society lotteries to ensure that products are regulated when required by the Act.

The Government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 in December 2020 with the publication of a Call for Evidence. We received over 16,000 responses, and we are considering all the evidence carefully. The Review is wide-ranging and evidence-led, and aims to make sure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. We are currently carefully considering all submitted evidence and a white paper will be published in the coming weeks.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
10th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether (a) she, (b) Ministers or (c) officials in her Department have met with representatives of the Horseracing Bettors Forum to discuss the forthcoming Gambling white paper.

Ministers and officials have meetings with various stakeholders to support ongoing work and policy development. There has also been a wide-ranging series of meetings to support the ongoing Gambling Act Review which was launched in December 2020 with a Call for Evidence. Records of ministerial meetings are published quarterly and are available on gov.uk.

Ministers have not had meetings with representatives of the Horseracing Bettors Forum. However, officials will be meeting the organisation to discuss the Gambling Act Review in the coming weeks.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions the Gambling commission has had with the information commissioner's office on the legality of requesting personal financial statements by licensed bookmakers for affordability checks.

The Gambling Commission takes care to ensure it operates within all relevant data protection rules and engages with the Information Commissioner’s Office when necessary. Its consultation and call for evidence on Remote Customer Interaction sought to build on existing requirements for how operators identify and intervene where customers may be at risk of harm, including by spending more than they can afford, and called for evidence specifically on the important issue of balancing data protection and consumer protection.

The Commission published an interim update setting out its next steps in this area and committed to engage stakeholders on concerns around consumer privacy in a further consultation on more detailed proposals. The interim update is available at:

https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/news/article/update-on-remote-customer-interaction-consultation

18th Aug 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will commit to supporting the introduction of a registration and licensing regime for gambling affiliates.

All gambling adverts, wherever they appear, must be socially responsible and are subject to strict controls on content and placement to protect children and vulnerable people from harm. Codes are published by the Committee of Advertising Practice (CAP), which covers online and non-broadcast spaces, and by the Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP), and these are administered by the Advertising Standards Authority. The standards set by the CAP apply to gambling affiliates, and operators are liable to enforcement action from the Gambling Commission if their affiliates’ marketing activities do not comply with the rules. The Commission has worked closely with the ASA on the issue of affiliates in recent years and has tightened its Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice (LCCP).

I also refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Shipley on the 24th June to Question 18509.

29th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the report by the House of Lords Select Committee on the Social and Economic Impact of the Gambling Industry, entitled Gambling Harm: Time for Action, what assessment his Department has made of the implications for its policies of the recommendations in that report on reviewing the restrictions placed on land-based casinos operating under the Gaming Act 1968.

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of a Call for Evidence. This closed on 31 March and received approximately 16,000 submissions from a broad range of interested organisations and individuals, including representatives of the land-based casino sector. We are considering all the evidence received carefully and aim to publish a white paper by the end of the year outlining conclusions and next steps.

29th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what evidence his Department holds on the potential effect of the opening of land-based casinos as a result of the passing of the Gambling Act 2005 on levels of problem gambling.

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of a Call for Evidence. This closed on 31 March and received approximately 16,000 submissions from a broad range of interested organisations and individuals, including representatives of the land-based casino sector. We are considering all the evidence received carefully and aim to publish a white paper by the end of the year outlining conclusions and next steps.

29th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans the Government has to bring forward legislative proposals to modernise regulation of land-based casinos as part of the wider review of gambling laws to ensure they are fit for the digital age.

The government launched its Review of the Gambling Act 2005 on 8 December with the publication of a Call for Evidence. This closed on 31 March and received approximately 16,000 submissions from a broad range of interested organisations and individuals, including representatives of the land-based casino sector. We are considering all the evidence received carefully and aim to publish a white paper by the end of the year outlining conclusions and next steps.

26th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what progress the Gambling Commission has made on its recent call for evidence on Remote Customer Interaction; and what steps the Government plans to take to consider the findings from that call for evidence in its review of the Gambling Act 2005.

The Gambling Commission’s consultation and call for evidence on Remote Customer Interaction closed on 9 February and received over 13,000 responses. The Commission is reviewing that evidence and intends to publish an interim update on progress and to set out the next steps in due course.

Government remains in close contact with the Commission as this progresses, and the Commission is sharing key evidence with the Department on this and other topics which may be relevant to our Review of the Gambling Act 2005. Our call for evidence closed on 31 March 2021, and we are currently carefully considering all the evidence submitted.

28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to tackle the grey market in gambling; and if he will make a statement.

Jurisdictions in which there are not clear rules about the legality of gambling, particularly online gambling, are often referred to as grey markets. There is no grey market in Great Britain, where operators are forbidden by law from providing gambling facilities to British consumers unless they are licensed by the Gambling Commission and abide by strict requirements intended to keep gambling fair and crime free and to protect children and vulnerable people. Any operator offering facilities to gamble without the appropriate licence from the Gambling Commission is committing an offence under the Gambling Act 2005.

Ministers and officials engage regularly with stakeholders and details of ministerial meetings are available at https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/905167/DCMS_Ministerial_meetings__1st_January_to_31st_March_2020.csv/preview

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions his Department has had with the Gambling Commission on the effect of the grey market in gambling on the gambling industry.

Jurisdictions in which there are not clear rules about the legality of gambling, particularly online gambling, are often referred to as grey markets. There is no grey market in Great Britain, where operators are forbidden by law from providing gambling facilities to British consumers unless they are licensed by the Gambling Commission and abide by strict requirements intended to keep gambling fair and crime free and to protect children and vulnerable people. Any operator offering facilities to gamble without the appropriate licence from the Gambling Commission is committing an offence under the Gambling Act 2005.

Ministers and officials engage regularly with stakeholders and details of ministerial meetings are available at https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/905167/DCMS_Ministerial_meetings__1st_January_to_31st_March_2020.csv/preview

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what information her Department holds on the number of books that discuss critical race theory in school libraries.

All pupils deserve to be taught a knowledge-rich curriculum that promotes the extensive reading of books and other texts, both in and out of school. School libraries complement public libraries in allowing pupils to do this. It is for individual schools to decide how best to provide and maintain a library service for their pupils, including which books the library stocks, or whether to employ a qualified librarian.

Given this autonomy, which is granted to schools, the department does not collect information about book stocks.

​In February 2022, the department published guidance to help schools understand their legal duties regarding political impartiality. The law is clear that schools must remain politically impartial, not promote partisan political views and should ensure the balanced treatment of political issues.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
14th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps her Department is taking to reduce waiting times for Education, Health and Care plan assessments in (a) North West Leicestershire constituency and (b) the UK.

The department has invested £1 million through the ‘Delivering Better Value’ programme to support the ‘Transforming SEND and Inclusion in Leicestershire’ programme, which aims to improve how the Leicestershire Area Partnership (LAP) supports children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and their families. Following the Ofsted inspection published in January 2023, the LAP was required to produce an Accelerated Progress Plan to address systemic weaknesses in the quality of their Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans. The department monitors progress against this plan at regular intervals. In addition, the department has commissioned specific support and challenge for the LAP, targeted at improving both the timeliness and quality of EHC plan assessments.

Within the SEND and Alternative Provision Improvement Plan, the department has set out its proposals for EHC plan reform. The department has co-produced an EHC plan template and supporting guidance, which will shortly be piloted in the Change Programme for local authorities, which, alongside the other measures described in the Improvement Plan, will help create a nationally consistent EHC plan process which makes greater use of digital technology, with the aim to improve the quality, consistency and experience of getting EHC plans.

David Johnston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
1st Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, the number of legal claims that have been submitted against the Education and Skills Funding Agency by private providers since its formation.

Complaints made about the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman are published in the ESFA’s Annual Report and Accounts on GOV.UK, and can be found through the following links:

2017-18: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-2017-to-2018.

2018-19: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2018-to-2019.

2019-20: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2019-to-2020.

2020-21: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2020-to-2021.

2021-22: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2021-to-2022.

On the number of legal claims submitted against the ESFA by private providers, there is no central record of legal cases held by the department.

1st Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many complaints her Department has received on the conduct of the Education and Skills Funding Agency since its formation.

Complaints made about the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman are published in the ESFA’s Annual Report and Accounts on GOV.UK, and can be found through the following links:

2017-18: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-annual-report-and-accounts-2017-to-2018.

2018-19: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2018-to-2019.

2019-20: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2019-to-2020.

2020-21: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2020-to-2021.

2021-22: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/education-and-skills-funding-agency-esfa-annual-report-and-accounts-2021-to-2022.

On the number of legal claims submitted against the ESFA by private providers, there is no central record of legal cases held by the department.

20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of assessments carried out by (a) full-time regulatory Ofsted and (b) contract non-Ofsted employed inspectors were Inadequate or Needs Improvement judgments in the Early Years sector in each of the last five years.

This is a matter for His Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman. I have asked her to write to the hon. Member and a copy of her reply will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether he is planning to review the methods of assessing the financial health of training providers in receipt of funding from the ESFA.

We continue to keep our approach to managing the sector’s financial position under review and update our guidance to reflect changing financial standards and prevailing economic conditions. Our guidance is freely available for public scrutiny.

A small team of highly experienced contract managers has been set up to focus on delivering enhanced monitoring and oversight of the top, approximately, 30 largest and most complex independent training providers. This work includes a more in-depth understanding and monitoring of these providers’ future strategy and financial position so that the likelihood and impact of large-scale provider failure is reduced.

As part of the flagship apprenticeship provision, organisations new to apprenticeship delivery are subject to an early monitoring regime. To maximise successful provision overall, we offer enhanced financial monitoring to organisations we perceive may be in financial difficulty.

Access to apprenticeship delivery is strictly controlled and targets not only an organisation’s financial status, but also its assessed ability to deliver and the grades awarded by Ofsted.

Ofsted inspects further education providers in line with its published ‘frequency of inspection guidance’ determined by the provider’s previous grade. Ofsted also uses a broad range of information to assess risk and performance when selecting providers for inspection.

The ESFA sets out in its guidance and removal from the register of apprenticeship training providers guidance what action may be taken if there is a poor Ofsted outcome.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
18th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department has taken to help prepare the UK fishing fleet for the transfer of EU quotas to the UK by June 2026 in the context of the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement.

The UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement secured the UK an increase in its share of quota for jointly managed fish stocks. This increase in fishing opportunities for the UK fleet has been gradually implemented across the duration of the transition period for fisheries to allow for the necessary adjustments by the UK fishing fleet, and in 2023 this uplift of quota was worth around £100m in additional fishing opportunities based on historic landing price. Increases in the UK quota share will continue annually until the adjustment period ends on 30 June 2026.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
27th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the potential impact of the work of (a) the National Plant Collections and (b) Plant Heritage on biodiversity; and if he will take steps to help support the work of these organisations.

The conservation work carried out by Plant Heritage to ensure the resilience of garden plants to environmental and societal change, makes an important contribution to HM Government’s plans to tackle biodiversity loss. There are currently over 650 registered and documented plant collections containing around 95,000 specimens under the auspices of Plant Heritage. Defra supports Plant Heritage alongside other organisations that hold plant collections, such as the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, which is a Defra non-departmental public body whose work aligns closely with the objectives of Plant Heritage. The National Collections held at Kew include species and cultivars grown for scientific research as well as ornamental display. They include genera such as bananas, important for their potential to safeguard food security through genetic diversification, and Betula, one of our most attractive garden trees. These collections form the basis for innovative interpretation and a vast programme of training and education. They come from a range of global locations and may offer valuable indications of which species could be fit and functional in the long term, in the face of biotic and abiotic threats. For example, incorporation of the genus Nothofagus (southern beech) into our tree planting programmes could help to ensure well-functioning future woodlands. With biodiversity disappearing at an unprecedented rate, the National Plant Collections and organisations such as Plant Heritage have an important role to play in the achievement of HM Government’s biodiversity ambitions.

10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the potential contribution of gardens to the Government's environmental objectives.

HM Government fully recognises the contribution of gardens, alongside the other natural features and spaces making up green infrastructure networks in towns and cities. Green infrastructure contributes to nature recovery and wider environmental benefits as well as making places more attractive to live and work. The 25 Year Environment Plan includes a commitment to introduce stronger new standards for green infrastructure. Natural England is delivering this Green Infrastructure Framework to help local authorities, developers and communities to improve provision in their area.

1st Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when he expects universal food waste collections to be implemented by local authorities.

Food waste is already collected from some or all households by 53% of local authorities in England. Our recycling consistency reforms mean that new powers, included in the Environment Act last year, will require all local authorities in England to arrange for the separate collection of food waste for recycling. We recently published our second consultation on recycling reforms, including proposed dates for these requirements. We are currently analysing responses to the consultation and intend to publish our response, including dates by which food waste collections will be required from households, in due course.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans the Government has to (a) reduce the quantity of unused paint being sent to landfill or for incineration and (b) help ensure the necessary recycling infrastructure is in place to facilitate reuse and remanufacture of unused paint.

The law at present encourages reuse and recycling through waste hierarchy obligations on all waste handlers. We welcome the voluntary action being taken by industry, such as the British Coatings Federation (BCF)'s PaintCare proposals, and community initiatives, supported by local authorities, to allow donations to local community repaint schemes. I will be meeting with the BCF in early March to find out more about their proposed scheme.

To strengthen action on reuse, we will shortly publish our new Waste Prevention Programme for England, on which we consulted in 2021, including on steps to improve local systems and services that facilitate reuse and recycling of this nature.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
8th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many EU countries have been granted derogations for the use of thiamethoxam since its ban in 2018.

EU legislation allows Member States to grant emergency authorisation for the use of a pesticide in special circumstances.  Since the EU prohibited the outdoor use of thiamethoxam in December 2018, 15 EU countries have granted emergency authorisations for products containing thiamethoxam.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
8th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the contribution that horticulture can make in helping to deliver the levelling up agenda across the UK.

Farming and food production are at the heart of the Government’s levelling up agenda. We must continue to support a vibrant and profitable food and farming industry, including horticulture, which supports the Government’s levelling up agenda and helps safeguard our food security. We are working closely with the horticulture sector to explore opportunities for economic growth and creating jobs across the country.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
8th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential role of horticulture, including national plant collections, parks and gardens in delivering the Government's levelling up agenda from a cultural perspective.

Defra is leading the £5.77 million cross-Governmental project to test and evaluate green social prescribing in seven test and learn sites and to run national research work to understand its scalability. This can include the prescribing of gardening projects and activities in parks. We have also committed to treble tree planting rates in England, and bring trees closer to people, through trees on streets, in parks and urban orchards, supported through the Urban Tree Challenge and Local Authority Treescape Funds. In addition, Defra and Natural England are working with other partners and stakeholders to develop a Green Infrastructure Framework. This will show what good green infrastructure looks like, including parks, woodlands and community food growing.

In order to support all these initiatives, we will need a thriving horticulture sector to provide the necessary plants, flowers and trees, and we are looking at the opportunities and barriers that the horticulture sector faces to support sustainable growth in the sector, so that more of our plants and flowers can be sourced from our own domestic growers.

On national plant collections, Defra has also committed to funding a £15 million project to digitise a significant proportion of the Herbarium at Kew Gardens. The Herbarium is the world’s largest collection of plant and fungal specimens, with specimens collected over 170 years, including those collected by Charles Darwin. The significant injection of government funding will protect irreplaceable samples from deterioration and allow researchers from across the country and the globe to access the historic collection, help conserve nature and find solutions to some of the most critical challenges facing humanity.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what support his Department is providing to local authorities to implement food waste collections.

The Environment Bill will require all local authorities in England to arrange for the collection of food waste for recycling. This must always be collected separately from residual waste and dry recyclable materials so that it can be recycled.

On 7 May 2021 we published a second consultation on recycling consistency. This consultation closed on 4 July 2021 and sought views on the implementation of separate food waste collections, among other policies. The consultation included questions on the materials in scope of collection and delivery dates. We are currently analysing responses to the consultation and intend to publish our Government response in due course.

Given the additional costs involved in separate food waste collection, the Government will ensure that local authorities are resourced to meet any net new burdens costs arising from this policy. We will continue to engage with local authorities on the cost estimates that we provided in the impact assessment accompanying the second consultation, as well as the appropriate timing for funding to be provided to authorities, to enable sufficient lead-in time ahead of implementation.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with the Royal Horticultural Society on the environmental impact of the Chelsea Flower Show in terms of reaching net zero.

Defra Ministers and officials undertake a wide range of discussions with stakeholders on the UK achieving its net zero ambitions. Whilst the Chelsea Flower Show is a key annual event in the horticultural calendar, its environmental impact has not been a topic covered in ministerial discussions with the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS). The RHS has recently published its sustainability strategy, which includes its target to be net climate positive by 2030.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
29th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to prevent fly-tipping on private land; and whether the Government plans to review sentencing guidelines for perpetrators of fly-tipping.

We appreciate the difficulty and cost that fly-tipping poses to landowners and we are working with a wide range of interested parties through the National Fly-Tipping Prevention Group, including the National Farmers' Union (NFU) and the Country Land and Business Association (CLA), to promote and disseminate good practice.

Our 2018 Resources and Waste Strategy set out our strategic approach to prevent, detect and deter waste crime. This included a commitment to develop a fly-tipping toolkit. The toolkit will be a web-based tool to help local authorities and others work in partnership to tackle fly-tipping.

Budget 2020 allocated up to £2 million to support innovative solutions to tackle fly-tipping. In April 2021 we commissioned a research project considering the drivers, deterrents and impacts of fly-tipping. This research project is due to be completed before the end of this year and will support informed policy making. We are exploring additional funding opportunities, including the role of digital solutions.

We are also preparing a number of legislative reforms to tackle waste crime, which should help to tackle fly-tipping. We are taking forward the commitment in the Resources and Waste Strategy to develop proposals for the reform of the waste carrier, broker, and dealer regime. We are working with industry and the regulator and we intend to consult later this year. We also intend to consult on the introduction of mandatory electronic waste tracking. Digital records of waste movements will allow regulators to detect when waste doesn't reach the next stage, which may indicate illegal activity including fly-tipping.

We are bringing forward several measures in the Environment Bill to ensure agencies and authorities can work more effectively to combat waste crime through better access to evidence and improved powers of entry. These new powers will help ensure waste criminals, such as illegitimate waste operators reliant on fly-tipping for income, are held accountable for their actions.

Sentencing guidelines are issued by the independent Sentencing Council for England and Wales, which decides its own work plan for developing/revising sentencing guidelines. The Sentencing Council has issued guidelines for environmental offences, which cover fly-tipping and other waste crimes. The Resources and Waste Strategy includes a commitment to work with the Sentencing Council to support any updates to the Environmental Offences Definitive Guideline should a review be undertaken.

In recent years we have bolstered local authorities' powers to tackle fly-tipping. We have introduced the power to issue fixed penalty notices of up to £400 to both fly-tippers and householders who pass their waste to an unlicensed waste carrier. We have also increased local authorities' powers to stop, search and seize vehicles of suspected fly-tippers.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
24th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the importance of (a) the Alcea collection and (b) other national plant collections to preserving the biodiversity of plants in the UK.

Defra values these national collections and the role they play in conservation. The Charity ‘Plant Heritage’ oversees the National Plant Collections and has a particular focus on rare cultivars, promoting the UK's horticultural heritage and engaging the public. The UK's first Alcea (Hollyhock) National Plant Collection in Lincolnshire is one of around 650 collections nationally. The Royal Botanic Gardens (RBG) Kew, which is a Defra arm's length body, is also a holder of some of these national collections. RBG Kew's Wakehurst National Collections like Nothofagus (southern beech) and Betula (birch) come from a range of global locations and may offer valuable indications of which species could be fit and functional in the long-term, in the face of biotic and abiotic threats. For instance, incorporation of the southern beech into our tree planting programmes could help to ensure functional future woodlands.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
24th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to support local authorities undertaking food waste collections.

We want to make recycling easier and ensure that there is a comprehensive, consistent service across England. This will help to reduce confusion with recycling, ensure that there is more recycled material in the products we buy and that the UK recycling industry grows. It would also constitute a significant step towards meeting our 25 Year Environment Plan commitment to eliminate avoidable waste by 2050 and contribute towards meeting recycling targets, including our commitment of 65% of municipal (household-like) waste to be recycled by 2035.

Following support at public consultation, the Environment Bill stipulates that all local authorities in England must make arrangements for a core set of materials to be collected for recycling from households. This includes a weekly separate food waste collection. On 7 May we published a second consultation seeking further views on recycling consistency, including setting out implementation timelines for food waste collection and asking questions on the provision of caddy liners to householders. Local authorities will be able to decide the end destination for food waste and garden waste, provided that the material is recycled or composted. One option is anaerobic digestion which presents the best environmental outcome for the treatment of unavoidable food waste, due to the generation of biofuel and digestate.

Any new financial burdens introduced through new statutory duties on local authorities will be assessed and the net additional cost covered by the Government. We are working to assess net additional costs to local authorities and will continue to engage with local authorities on the cost estimates that we have provided in the impact assessment accompanying the second consultation on recycling consistency, as well as the appropriate timing for funding to be provided to local authorities, ahead of introduction of recycling consistency reforms.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
3rd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans he has for (a) penalty reforms and (b) community punishments in response to increases in littering.

Littering is a criminal offence, with a maximum penalty on conviction of a fine of up to £2,500, although most enforcement is carried out by local authorities using fixed penalties.

Following consultation, with effect from April 2018, we increased the maximum fixed penalty for littering from £80 to £150, and from April 2019, the minimum fixed penalty was also raised from £50 to £65. We have also given councils in England (outside London) new civil penalty powers to tackle littering from vehicles. We have no plans to make further changes to the level of fixed penalties or fines for littering at this stage.

Community Payback is the work carried out by offenders who have an unpaid work requirement as part of a community sentence. This can already include activities involving clearing litter.

It is often recommended that those found guilty of littering should be required to participate in litter‑picking. However, community sentences are only available for imprisonable offences and are therefore not available for littering offences.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
3rd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the takeaway food industry on littering.

The Litter Strategy sets out how we intend to work with the relevant industries to tackle certain types of problematic litter, including fast-food packaging.

To this effect, I held a roundtable in September 2020 with large fast-food retailers to understand what action they are taking now to tackle the litter created by their products. It was encouraging to hear about the initiatives they are working on and, more importantly, that they are committed to delivering lasting change by working together to tackle what is an industry wide issue. We are watching closely to see how this commitment translates into action in due course.

We believe that businesses should try to reduce the amount of litter their products generate. Through our reforms to packaging producer responsibility, we aim to reduce the amount of fast-food packaging that is littered and increase the amount of ‘on-the-go’ packaging that is recycled or reused. We will continue to engage with the takeaway food industry on these reforms.

Following responses from our 2019 consultation on Extended Producer Responsibility, we will seek views on policy proposals relating to littered packaging, such as takeaway food packaging, in our forthcoming consultation this spring.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
23rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of the creation of a UK Garden City scheme to (a) promote horticulture and (b) promote and reinvigorate green spaces that are vital to physical and mental wellbeing during the covid-19 outbreak.

The merits of such a scheme were considered when responding to a select committee report on Garden Tourism in 2019. Such a scheme risks confusion with the successful City of Culture competition and other extant schemes such as Britain in Bloom. The Government did not accept the committee's recommendation.

We do of course recognise the immense benefits of being able to access green spaces, such as parks and gardens, to mental and physical well-being. Defra is collaborating with the Ornamental Horticulture Roundtable Group on a Growth Strategy for the sector to help ensure the ornamental horticulture sector continues to thrive. This is industry led and underlined by research identifying key areas of opportunity for growth in the sector, including the growing importance of outdoor green spaces to health.

The Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan includes commitments to introduce stronger new standards for green infrastructure and to support local authorities to assess provision. Green infrastructure includes greenspace such as parks and woodlands and other environmental features such as street trees, hedgerows and green walls and roofs. Natural England and Public Health England have published a Rapid Scoping Review of Health and Wellbeing Evidence to inform the standards.

Natural England is testing the standards in trials with local authorities and developers, and they are due to be launched in 2022. The aim is to embed the standards in national planning guidance and policy to ensure that good green infrastructure is secured for all communities through the planning system.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
21st Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what steps her Department is taking to increase trade with central Asian countries.

Fast growing economies such as Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan provide an abundance of opportunities for British business across a wide range of sectors.

My Department is supporting British business to grab these opportunities through trade dialogues and regular business to business exchanges, including the annual United Kingdom-Kazakhstan Inter-Governmental Commission that I co-chaired late last year in Astana.

We are working hard to remove trade barriers with Uzbekistan too.For example, an update to their Intellectual Property regime, removing barriers for British businesses could be worth over £11million per year.

5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will make an assessment of the impact of automation on entry-level (a) fork-lift truck drivers, (b) elementary storage occupations and (c) other logistics workers.

The ‘Future of Freight: A long-term plan’ sets out a cross-modal approach to a freight and logistics sector that is cost efficient, reliable, resilient, environmentally sustainable and valued by society. Priorities in the plan include investing in innovation while also supporting a diverse range of people to pursue careers in the sector.

We have established a People and Skills Delivery Group, bringing together government and industry, to address key barriers to recruitment and retention in the sector. Through this group, we will be assessing what technological advancements we can expect to see in the sector and what training provision will be required to retain and upskill the workforce, as well as how technology can be utilised to improve accessibility to the workforce.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department is taking steps to reopen the canal in Measham; and if he will take steps to provide compensation to Measham Parish Council for the loss of that amenity in recent years.

Whilst provision for the extension of the canal at Measham was made under previous plans for HS2, decisions regarding the restoration and reopening of the canal are a matter for the Ashby Canal Trust and not the Department for Transport or HS2 Ltd.

Huw Merriman
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, for what reason the Land Registry does (a) not include a record of the sale in 2011 and (b) include a record of the sale in 2015 of the Old Rectory in Appleby Magna.

The Land Registry only records the most recent transaction unless there are previous transactions which created binding benefits and burdens. Individuals can apply to Land Registry for historic copies of the register showing previous ownership and transaction information.

Huw Merriman
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many properties were purchased by HS2 Ltd using compulsory purchase orders in (a) North West Leicestershire constituency and (b) the UK.

There have been no land or property purchased using compulsory purchase powers in the North West Leicestershire Constituency. The Secretary of State does not have compulsory powers for Phase 2b of the scheme.

It is not practicable to provide a figure for the number of properties that have been acquired via compulsory purchase order for the delivery of the HS2 project, as it is land parcels that are required for its delivery and so that is what is recorded.

Huw Merriman
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
16th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, for what reason the Land Registry does (a) include a record of the sale in 2011 and (b) not include a record of the sale in 2015 of the Old Rectory in Appleby Magna.

The Land Registry does have a record of the sale in 2015 of the Old Rectory in Appleby Magna and a copy of the Land Registry summary of title document is attached.

Anthony Browne
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to link up HS2 to the Midland Mainline through the East Midlands Hub.

The Integrated Rail Plan set out plans for a new high speed line between the West and East Midlands, connecting to an electrified Midland Main Line near East Midlands Parkway (HS2 East). Following the publication of the Integrated Rail Plan, DfT asked HS2 Ltd and Network Rail to work together to develop options on how to take forward HS2 East. This work is ongoing.

Huw Merriman
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
30th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how (a) much money and (b) many hours have been spent by (i) High Speed Two Limited and (ii) his Department on (A) the design and (B) consultation on the proposed HS2 line to Leeds from the East Midlands Hub since 21 November 2021.

Preparatory work on the study envisaged in the IRP of how HS2 services could best reach Leeds has been undertaken using existing Department for Transport staff as part of their routine work. No consultation has been launched. We intend to publish the terms of reference for the Study soon.

HS2 Ltd has not undertaken, and no money and no hours have been spent on, any proactive work (design or consultation) on the section of high speed route to Leeds from the East Midlands Hub in the period in question.

Huw Merriman
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent assessment she has made of trends in the number of HGV drivers in the UK; and what steps she is taking to address any shortages of those drivers.

The Office for National Statistics Annual Population Survey estimates that the number of HGV drivers in the twelve-month period ending March 2022 was 262,700, this is up from 253,200 in the twelve-month period ending December 2021. ONS have identified and are investigating an issue in the classification of some occupations in its statistics. While investigations are still ongoing, it is not anticipated that figures of HGV/LGV drivers will be significantly impacted.

In response the Government has taken decisive action to address the HGV driver shortage putting in place 33 short, medium and long-term interventions to date to help alleviate the existing HGV driver shortages. These interventions include investing up to £34 million to create skills bootcamps to train up to 11,000 more people to become HGV drivers. We are also supporting HGV driver training through apprenticeships, including the Large Goods Vehicle Driver and Urban Driver apprenticeships. The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Jobcentre Plus are also supporting returning to driving and helping jobseekers become HGV drivers where appropriate.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency has expanded HGV driver testing capacity and the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency has improved licencing processes in order to help get these new drivers on the road.

The Government continues to have positive engagement with the sector who report that the 33 measures are working.

Lucy Frazer
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
20th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department is providing support to canal restoration projects that have been affected by the construction of HS2.

HS2 Ltd works closely with the Canal and River Trust, and local canal groups, to mitigate impacts on the canal network and identify opportunities for improvements. Various canal projects have been supported by HS2 project funds and grants, as well as from donations provided by the HS2 supply chain. Projects have ranged from the supply of wood chippings to improve towpath surfacing, to larger schemes, such as the Trent Sow Parklands and Cannock Chase project which is supporting canal restoration works and improvements to the towpath network. HS2 Ltd is always keen to hear from those involved in local projects, including those aimed at improving community opportunities associated with the canal network.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
20th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he expects track designers to start developing the route for the new HS2 line between Birmingham and East Midlands Parkway.

Following a pause to design work on the HS2 Eastern Leg as a result of the Oakervee Review and during the development of the Integrated Rail Plan, the Department and HS2 Ltd are now considering how best to take HS2 East forward, working closely with Network Rail.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
23rd Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress he has made on identifying projects suitable for the restoring your railways funding; and what his planned timetable is for providing an update on the submission made by the Campaign to reopen the Ivanhoe Line.

The £500m Restoring Your Railway Fund is supporting over 45 schemes at different stages of development with funding and advice. A Strategic Outline Business Case for the Ivanhoe Line bid was submitted to the Department in May 2021. The Secretary of State for Transport and I are considering next steps for projects, including the Ivanhoe Line, with a decision on the next tranche to progress anticipated later this year.

19th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department will offer support to local authorities replacing conventional diesel with HVO fuel to run their vehicle fleet.

The Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) certificate trading scheme is successfully supporting a market for low carbon fuels in the UK, including biodiesel. Hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) is a type of biodiesel. Those supplying HVO for use in road vehicles in the UK, and which meets sustainability criteria, are eligible for reward under the RTFO scheme.

There is no funding programme specifically for local authorities switching to fuel their existing fleets with HVO, and there are no current plans to introduce such a programme. The primary support for the wider deployment of HVO is the RTFO scheme, which provides a competitive market for a broad range of low carbon fuels.

Local authorities are well placed to determine how best to decarbonise their vehicle fleets. The Department is supporting this through a grant provided by the Energy Savings Trust. This provides tailored outreach advice to local authorities in support of the development and implementation of their own transport decarbonisation strategies, including advice on the decarbonisation of their own vehicle fleets. Later this year the Department will also publish a transport decarbonisation toolkit for local authorities, which will provide guidance to support local areas to deliver more sustainable transport measures including decarbonising their own fleets.

15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he plans to extend the use of roadside funnel bins following the trial in 2017.

Following National Highways’ trial of roadside funnel bins in 2017 at Lymm Truckstop, a further 44 bins have been installed including at Sandbach and Maidstone Service Areas. National Highways continue to work with Motorway Service Area (MSA) operators to encourage them to install bins and trial different interventions to influence drivers to dispose of their rubbish responsibly.

More broadly, National Highways has commissioned charity Keep Britain Tidy to carry out research into littering behaviour on the Strategic Road Network (SRN). The behavioural insights and outputs from this research will be used by National Highways to implement targeted campaigns including social media campaigns, improvements to rest areas, installation of more drive-up bins, distribution of ‘pinned bins’, and engagement with families and employees.

20th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to encourage the development of electric powered HGVs.

The Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution announced that we are investing £20m this financial year in planning for zero emission road freight trials which will support UK industry to develop cost-effective, zero-emission HGVs and their refuelling infrastructure in the UK. These trials will advance R&D in the technologies of catenary electric, battery electric and hydrogen-powered HGVs, allowing us to begin the commercial roll-out of the appropriate new technologies before the end of the decade.

In addition, the recently announced plug-in truck grant reduces the purchase price of zero emission commercial vehicles for consumers. Grant rates for eligible trucks are set at 20% of the purchase price, with up to £25,000 of funding available for the largest HGVs. This grant should incentivise increased uptake in zero emission HGVs.

We will also be consulting on a date for phasing out the sale of new diesel heavy goods vehicles (HGVs), to drive innovation and development, and to increase the uptake of zero emission alternatives within the HGV sector.

20th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether the DVLA has plans to review the licence requirements for e-bikes and scooters.

In enabling e-scooter trials to begin, we were constrained by existing legislation, and could not quickly remove the driving licence requirement. We have allowed full and provisional licence holders to use e-scooters in the trials, opening trials up to the greatest number of people. It is important to note that the current regulations are designed to enable effective trials of e-scooters to be run, and therefore apply only to and for the duration of the trials. We have a national monitoring and evaluation programme in place to assess the safety and wider impacts of e-scooters. Any future decisions around licence requirements for e-scooters will be made using the evidence from this programme.

Section 32 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 provides that electrically assisted pedal cycles (EAPCs) must not be driven on a road by anyone under 14 years of age. There is no requirement to have a licence to ride an EAPC provided that it complies with the requirements in the 2015 EAPC Regulations, and EAPCs complying with those same requirements do not need to be registered, taxed or insured. The Government has no plans to change any of the above.

27th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has to reform the road user levy after the end of the transition period to ensure parity between domestic and foreign hauliers.

The HGV levy was introduced to ensure a fairer arrangement for all hauliers, and is paid equally by UK and foreign hauliers. It is currently suspended until 1 August 2021, and we are considering reforms to it for when it is reinstated.

22nd Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, on how many occasions the Child Maintenance Service requested a death certificate for a paying parent where the cause of death was defined as suicide in each of the last four years; and how many deaths of paying parents were recorded in that period.

The information requested is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

When notified of a customer death within Child Maintenance, there is a process to be followed to take the appropriate action on the case. This includes verifying the death of the customer. Requesting a copy of the death certificate is one such way of verifying a customer’s death, but if the death has been reported and verified elsewhere then the cross-government computer system called Customer Information System (CIS) will be updated, meaning further evidence is not required for Child Maintenance purposes. We cannot readily identify from data sources whether a copy of a death certificate is held on a case so providing accurate data would involve manually reviewing every case where a customer has died.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people cited vaccine harm as a factor in their claim for a Personal Independence Payment in each year since 2018.

This information is not readily available and to provide it would incur disproportionate cost.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is based on the needs arising from a long-term health condition or disability and causation is not asked for, or recorded centrally, where provided.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
9th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many applications for Personal Independence Payments were made in each region in each month of the last five years.

Data on Personal Independence Payment (PIP) applications can be found on Stat-Xplore. In particular, the ‘PIP Registrations’ dataset includes the number of applications by month, which can be broken down by region. Regions within England and Wales can be found under ‘Geography’, within the ‘DWP policy ownership’ category. Data is currently published up to, and including, October 2022.

You can log in, or access Stat-Xplore as a guest user, which still gives instant access to the main functions, and, if needed, you can access guidance on how to extract the information required.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
22nd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the guidance by NICE entitled Covid-19 rapid guideline: managing symptoms (including at the end of life) in the community, NG163, published on 3 April 2020, which medical experts were consulted during the commissioning process.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guideline NG163, published in 2020, was commissioned in accordance with an established agreement between NHS England and NICE. The focus at that time was given to providing rapid guidance on the management of affected patients with COVID-19. The following organisations were consulted on the guideline:

- Association for Palliative Medicine;

- Palliative Care Formulary;

- Wolfson Palliative Care Research Centre;

- Cicely Saunders Institute;

- NHS England;

- ICU Steps;

- Macmillan Cancer Support;

- Marie Curie;

- National Audit for Care at the End of Life;

- Palliative Care for Wales;

- Royal College of General Practitioners;

- Royal College of Physicians; and

- Sue Ryder.

The following organisations provided general practice consultation on the guidance:

- NICE GP Reference Group; and

- RCGP Network.

A number of NICE’s COVID-19 rapid guidelines were subsequently incorporated into a single guideline, NG191, for the management of COVID-19 in children and adults. The list of panel members for this guideline is available at the following link:

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng191/documents/register-of-interests-2

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 5 December 2023 to Question 3835 on Tobacco: Sales, what discussions she has had with Trading Standards on the resources required to enforce a generational smoking ban.

Smoking is responsible for around 80,000 deaths a year in the United Kingdom and causes approximately one in four cancer deaths in the UK. It also costs our country £17 billion a year and puts a huge burden on the National Health Service.

That is why we will introduce the Tobacco and Vapes Bill in this parliamentary session to create the first smokefree generation, enable us to further crack down on youth vaping and strengthen our enforcement activity, through new powers to fine rogue retailers. To ensure the law is enforced, the Government is providing an additional £30 million a year for enforcement agencies to support work on underage and illicit sales of tobacco products and vapes.

Officials are speaking regularly with trading standards about the use of the additional enforcement funding and around enforcement action more generally.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if she will make an estimate of the potential impact of the proposed generational smoking ban on police expenditure related to the implementation of that ban.

As is the case with existing age of sale legislation for tobacco products, breaches of the new law will be dealt with by local authority trading standards rather than by police forces.

To ensure the law is enforced, the Government is providing an additional £30 million a year for enforcement agencies to support work on underage and illicit sales of tobacco products and vapes.

Andrea Leadsom
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what stocks of (a) midazolam, (b) morphine and (c) fentanyl are held in (i) the essential medicines buffer stock and (ii) the UK stockpile of medicines for covid-19 preparedness.

The essential medicines buffer stock program is no longer active and there are no stocks held under this. Some medicines that were previously held for COVID-19 preparedness, including midazolam 50 milligram/10 millilitre ampoules, are in the process of being transitioned into centralised stockholdings of countermeasures for broader emerging infectious disease and pandemic preparedness. Stocks of morphine 10 milligram/millilitre and 10 milligram/2 millilitre and fentanyl 500 microgram/10 millilitre remain, but will not be retained centrally. The countermeasures programme is informed by scientific and clinical assessment of the evidence base and is kept under review, building on lessons learned from COVID-19 and other outbreaks.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the guidance by NICE entitled Covid-19 rapid guideline: managing symptoms including at the end of life in the community, NG163, published on 3 April 2020, by what process (a) that guidance was commissioned and (b) the NHS decided (i) to procure Midazolam for use in (A) end-of-life and (B) other patient care and (ii) the quantity of Midazolam it would procure in each of the last four years.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guideline NG163 published in 2020 was commissioned as part of a programme to provide rapid guidance on the management of affected patients with COVID-19. Several of NICE’s COVID-19 rapid guidelines were incorporated into a single guideline for the management of COVID-19 in children and adults (NG191), which was last updated in June 2023.

Early in the pandemic, NHS England convened a National Clinical Group comprising senior specialist clinicians and relevant specialist pharmacists to develop priority medicines lists for critical care, end of life care and antibiotics and these were kept under review as the pandemic and subsequent clinical knowledge evolved. As part of this process, midazolam was identified as a priority medicine for use in both critical care as an alternative to propofol in the sedatives category, and end of life care as a first line medicine in the anxiety category.

The following table shows the quantity of midazolam procured by the National Health Service in England using NHS England procurement frameworks for use in secondary care in each of the last four years to 2023/24:

Financial year

Quantity of packs

2020/21

587,003

2021/22

482,458

2022/23

415,512

2023/24

229,693

It is not possible to differentiate between Midazolam use in end of life and other patient care. This data excludes procurement for use in primary and community care.

In primary health care, procurement is undertaken by retail pharmacies on an individual basis, based on their perception of future demand needs or in direct response to prescriptions received from patients. There is no centralised procurement process for primary care and therefore there is no information that is relevant to the question asked.

Health is largely a devolved matter, and decisions on the procurement of medicines in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are therefore a matter for the Scottish Government, Welsh Government and Northern Ireland Executive respectively.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if she will review the safeguarding measures in place for the provision of telemedicine abortion services.

Safeguarding is an essential aspect of abortion care, including in telemedicine abortion services. The Department’s Required Standard Operating Procedures for approved independent sector abortion providers in England (RSOPs) include the requirement that all abortion providers have effective arrangements in place to safeguard vulnerable women accessing home-use early medical abortion. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspects against all of the Department’s RSOPs when it inspects an independent sector provider, and safeguarding procedures are included in the CQC’s Termination of Pregnancy inspection framework as areas to be considered during an inspection.

In addition, the Department commissioned the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health to develop new national safeguarding guidance for children and young people under 18 years old accessing early medical abortion services, which was published on 30 August 2022, to ensure that robust safeguarding processes are embedded across all abortion services.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what (a) trials and (b) tests were conducted to ensure the (i) safety and (ii) efficiency of mixing and matching covid-19 vaccines and boosters from different manufacturers; and when those trials and tests were conducted.

The Government-funded, world-first studies on the safety and efficacy of interchanging different COVID-19 vaccines include the Com-COV1, Com-COV2 and Com-COV3 studies led by the University of Oxford, and the COV-Boost study led by University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust. Com-COV1 was launched in February 2021 and completed in June 2022. Com-COV2 was launched in April 2021 and is still ongoing. Com-COV3 was launched in January 2022 and is still ongoing. COV-Boost was launched in May 2021 and completed in April 2023. More information on these studies is available at the following links:

https://comcovstudy.web.ox.ac.uk/about-com-cov1

https://comcovstudy.web.ox.ac.uk/about-com-cov2

https://comcovstudy.web.ox.ac.uk/about-com-cov3

https://covboost.web.ox.ac.uk/about

All these studies have found interchanging vaccines to be safe and, in some cases, more likely to produce a stronger immune response. These findings have helped to inform the United Kingdom’s COVID-19 vaccination programme as well as vaccine policy around the world. Preliminary data from these studies was shared with the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, Vaccine Taskforce and the Department as it became available.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding has his Department allocated to process compensation claims caused by Covid-19 vaccines; and how much of that budget has been spent as of 16 August 2023.

The Department has identified contingent liabilities relating to the COVID-19 vaccines and reports on these to Parliament on a confidential basis due to commercial sensitivities. Any spend incurred against these liabilities will be reported in the usual way in the Department’s Annual Report and Accounts.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
12th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many and what proportion of patients who were moved from hospitals to (a) care and (b) nursing homes subsequently died of (i) covid-19 and (ii) other causes within (A) 7, (B) 14, (C) 28, (D) 56 and (E) 112 days of being moved.

The information requested is not held centrally.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many patients were moved from hospitals to (a) care and (b) nursing homes to create space for anticipated covid-19 patients in England and Wales in (i) March and (ii) April 2020.

The information requested is not held centrally.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
21st Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what budget provision his Department has made for costs associated with vaccine harms in the next five years.

The Vaccine Damage Payment Scheme amount included in the Annual Report and Accounts, was £9,889,743 as of 31 March 2022. The information can be found in ‘Note 16 Provisions for liabilities and charges’ on page 353. The £9,889,743 is contained in the ‘other’ value of £4,078,443,000. As the amount is not material to the accounts, it was contained in the ‘other’ category with other provisions.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
21st Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, (a) with reference to NICE guideline NG163, published 3 April 2020, by what process that guideline was commissioned, (b) by what processes the NHS decided to procure Midazolam for use in patient care, including end-of-life care and (c) by what process the NHS decided on the quantity of Midazolam it would procure in each of the last four years.

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence’s (NICE) guideline NG163 published in 2020 was commissioned in accordance with an established agreement between NHS England and NICE. The focus at that time was given to providing rapid guidance on the management of affected patients with COVID-19. A number of NICE’s COVID-19 rapid guidelines were incorporated into a single guideline for the management of COVID-19 in children and adults (NG191).

During the pandemic there was an increase in demand for, and consequently in the United Kingdom’s purchase of a number of medicines, including midazolam, to support the care of COVID-19 patients in intensive care and at the end of life. National Health Service purchasing decisions are made by individual trusts against national procurement frameworks. Volumes are calculated based on their forecast consumption.

24th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department holds data on the vaccine status of people who died after 31 May 2022.

The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) does hold data on the vaccine status of people who died after 31 May 2022.

UKHSA uses the data on the vaccination status of people who have died to produce monthly COVID-19 Vaccine Surveillance reports which can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-vaccine-weekly-surveillance-reports

This covers an extensive range of measures of vaccine effectiveness, including demonstrating effectiveness against infection, transmission, hospitalisation and mortality.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
9th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many and what proportion of clinical NHS staff have received a covid-19 booster vaccination in the most recent period for which data is available.

The United Kingdom Health Security Agency publish monthly reports on seasonal influenza and COVID-19 vaccine uptake in frontline healthcare workers. Data published to the end of November 2022 showed that in 165 NHS trusts providing a return, 338,602 frontline healthcare workers had had a COVID-19 vaccine since 1 September 2022, an uptake of 36.3%.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much her Department has spent commissioning research into problem gambling in each of the last five years; and whether it is her policy that gambling harms are a public health issue.

We are committed to tackling gambling-related harms through a public health approach, recognising the potential impacts on individuals, their families, close associates and society. The Department funds research through the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR). The following table shows the funding allocated for research into problem gambling through the NIHR’s research programmes in each of the last five years.

2017/18

£0.00

2018/19

£0.00

2019/20

£97,535.81

2020/21

£121,439.68

2021/22

£695,254.73

In 2019, the former Public Health England conducted an evidence review of gambling-related harms. The cost of research commissioned through this review was £8,000.

20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether she has had recent discussions with industry groups on the sustainability of community pharmacies.

The Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework five-year deal commits £2.592 billion in each financial year between 2019 and 2024 for community pharmacy. On 22 September 2022, following discussions between the Department, NHS England and the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee, which represents pharmacy contractors in England, we announced an agreement for the remaining years of the Framework.

20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether her Department has had recent discussions with (a) the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and (b) clinical commissioning groups on the rollout of Libre Two sensors to manage diabetes.

There have been no recent discussions. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence updated its guidance on real-time and intermittently scanned continuous glucose monitoring, such as FreeStyle Libre 2 sensors for eligible patients. The newly established integrated care boards will take this guidance into account in commissioning services for local populations.

8th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has made an assessment of the benefits of green spaces and gardening to mental and physical health and what policies the Government is pursuing to ensure those benefits can be realised by people without access to green spaces.

An evidence review of the health effects of access to greenspace, including gardening was published by Public Health England in 2020. It found evidence that exposure to greenspaces can promote and protect good health and aid in recovery from illness and help with managing poor mental and physical health. The evidence review is available at the following link:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/904439/Improving_access_to_greenspace_2020_review.pdf

The Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan includes specific measures such a cross-Government project on tackling mental ill-health through green social prescribing and a national framework of green infrastructure standards to ensure new developments include accessible green spaces and areas with little or no green space can be improved for the benefit of the community. The Plan is available at the following link:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/693158/25-year-environment-plan.pdf

12th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies and those of NHS England of the gastroenterology Getting It Right First Time Programme National Specialty Report: Proposed Recommendations; and what steps (a) his Department and (b) NHS England plan to take in response to those recommendations in helping to ensure that people living with inflammatory bowel disease receive consistent care across the country.

The Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) national specialty report on gastroenterology was published in September 2021. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is one of the conditions covered under gastroenterological services in the report. The report sets out actions and recommendations to improve patient care in gastroenterology. The aim is to reduce unwarranted variation in treatments and services in, which will ensure consistent care is provided to IBD patients across the country.

The GIRFT programme is now embedded within NHS England and NHS Improvement’s programmes to improve quality and productivity, so that best practice is adopted throughout the NHS. NHS England and NHS Improvement are encouraging individual sites to evaluate how best to take forward these recommendations. The recommendation on IBD is estimated to reduce emergency admissions by 6,600 per year. The Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement expect National Health Service trusts and clinical teams to consider how best they can implement these recommendations for individuals to ensure the consistent and high quality care for IBD and other gastroenterological conditions.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
12th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps (a) his Department and (b) NHS England are taking to ensure that best practice set out by the Getting It Right First Time programme in areas including inflammatory bowel disease are adopted throughout the NHS.

The Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) national specialty report on gastroenterology was published in September 2021. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is one of the conditions covered under gastroenterological services in the report. The report sets out actions and recommendations to improve patient care in gastroenterology. The aim is to reduce unwarranted variation in treatments and services in, which will ensure consistent care is provided to IBD patients across the country.

The GIRFT programme is now embedded within NHS England and NHS Improvement’s programmes to improve quality and productivity, so that best practice is adopted throughout the NHS. NHS England and NHS Improvement are encouraging individual sites to evaluate how best to take forward these recommendations. The recommendation on IBD is estimated to reduce emergency admissions by 6,600 per year. The Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement expect National Health Service trusts and clinical teams to consider how best they can implement these recommendations for individuals to ensure the consistent and high quality care for IBD and other gastroenterological conditions.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
12th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment (a) his Department and (b) NHS England have made of the impact of the findings contained within the recent Getting it Right First Time national report on gastroenterology and on inflammatory bowel disease patients.

The Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) national specialty report on gastroenterology was published in September 2021. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is one of the conditions covered under gastroenterological services in the report. The report sets out actions and recommendations to improve patient care in gastroenterology. The aim is to reduce unwarranted variation in treatments and services in, which will ensure consistent care is provided to IBD patients across the country.

The GIRFT programme is now embedded within NHS England and NHS Improvement’s programmes to improve quality and productivity, so that best practice is adopted throughout the NHS. NHS England and NHS Improvement are encouraging individual sites to evaluate how best to take forward these recommendations. The recommendation on IBD is estimated to reduce emergency admissions by 6,600 per year. The Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement expect National Health Service trusts and clinical teams to consider how best they can implement these recommendations for individuals to ensure the consistent and high quality care for IBD and other gastroenterological conditions.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
10th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make an assessment of the need to increase funding for Inflammatory Bowel Disease services in line with recent prevalence figures.

The majority of services for people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are commissioned locally by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), who are allocated funding from NHS England and NHS Improvement using the CCG funding allocation formula. This formula takes into consideration attributes of local populations to assess the level of need.

NHS England and NHS Improvement commission some specialist services for patients with complex IBD. Funding decisions for these are made in line with local priorities and in the context of the interim funding regime in place during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
10th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans his Department has to develop a long-term strategy to improve services and care for adults and children with inflammatory bowel disease.

We have no specific plans to do so. However, NHS England and NHS Improvement are working with front-line clinical experts, patient representative groups and leading charities, including Crohn’s and Colitis UK, to improve diagnosis and treatment of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). This includes a new IBD RightCare scenario, which will set out high-quality joined-up care at every point of the patient journey, as well as data packs for local commissioners.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps have been taken to ensure that specialists regularly update the Shielded Patient List in respect of clinically extremely vulnerable people during the covid-19 outbreak for people with inflammatory bowel disease.

Inflammatory bowel disease is not a condition that automatically identifies someone as clinically extremely vulnerable. However, there may be individuals with inflammatory bowel disease who are classed as clinically extremely vulnerable because of other clinical conditions, or as a result of the findings of the QCOVID predictive risk model.

Guidance on how clinicians can update the Shielded Patient List is regularly issued to the National Health Service and is available at the following link:

https://digital.nhs.uk/coronavirus/shielded-patient-list

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what criteria is being used to prioritise clinically vulnerable, moderate risk, people with inflammatory bowel disease for the covid-19 vaccine; and which healthcare professionals are responsible for identifying those patients and adding them to the appropriate vaccination list.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation current view is that inflammatory bowel disease is not in itself an indicator of increased risk of serious outcomes from COVID-19. However where an individual is, as a result of disease or treatment, immunosuppressed they may be either defined as clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) and therefore are prioritised in priority group 4 in Phase 1 of the vaccine programme or if the immunosuppression is less severe will have been included in priority group 6. Clinicians responsible for individuals’ care, whether in hospital or in primary care, are primarily responsible for ensuring they are in the appropriate priority group. Anyone who is concerned that they have not been yet offered vaccination but believe they do meet the criteria for either group 4 or 6 may wish to discuss with their general practitioner or hospital clinician.

19th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to offer people who have received the full course of covid-19 vaccines abroad the option of not having to quarantine on arrival to the UK.

We currently have no plans to do so.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
19th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the (a) support available to and (b) capacity of the breast imaging and diagnostic workforce.

Health Education England (HEE) welcomes Professor Sir Mike Richards’ report ‘Diagnostics Recovery and Renewal’, which stated that major expansion and reform of the diagnostic services is needed over the next five years to facilitate recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and to meet rising demand across multiple aspects of diagnostics.

HEE is working with system partners on the longer-term strategy that will also consider further the diagnostic and breast imaging workforce needs beyond 2021. This planning is fully aligned with the NHS Long Term Plan, the NHS People Plan and associated ambitions for further development of cancer services. This will include exploring sustainable growth beyond 2021 in key professions through continued investment in training places, with a greater focus on attracting and retaining students and improving the numbers of qualified professionals who go on to work in the National Health Service.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
13th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the rate of infection with covid-19 is for (a) young people aged 11-17 and (b) adults over 18 years old in the UK.

We do not have the rate of infection (R) of COVID-19 for different age groups. The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies publishes the R number for the United Kingdom on a weekly basis.

R is not usually a useful measure on its own and needs to be considered alongside the number of new cases. More information can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-r-number-in-the-uk

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
13th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the rate of infection with covid-19 is for (a) children aged 0-10 and (b) adults over 18 years old in the UK.

We do not have the rate of infection (R) of COVID-19 for different age groups. The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies publishes the R number for the United Kingdom on a weekly basis.

R is not usually a useful measure on its own and needs to be considered alongside the number of new cases. More information can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-r-number-in-the-uk

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
4th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment Public Health England has made of the implications for its policies of recent research that cigarette smokers are less likely to contract covid-19; and if he will make a statement.

Public Health England (PHE) is monitoring the developing evidence on smoking and COVID-19 to inform its advice to the public and local and national healthcare systems.

At the request of PHE, an independent rapid review of the evidence on smoking and COVID-19 by researchers from University College London and the Royal Veterinary College will be updated regularly as a living review. The most recent report is available at the following link:

https://www.qeios.com/read/UJR2AW.2

PHE advice remains that smokers should quit; there is no evidence to justify changing that advice.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
18th Jan 2024
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, when his Department plans to respond to the Eighth Report of the Foreign Affairs Committee of Session 2022-23 on Tilting Horizons: the Integrated Review and the Indo-Pacific, HC 172, published on 30 August 2023; and if he will make an assessment of the implications for his policies of the recommendations in the Open Doors 2024 World Watch List.

The Government will publish shortly its response to Foreign Affairs Committee report HC 172 on the Indo-Pacific. The Government welcomes the Committee's recognition of the strategic importance of the Indo-Pacific to the UK's prosperity, security and development objectives.

We note the launch of the report by Open Doors entitled World Watch List 2024. Championing freedom of religion or belief for all remains a priority for the UK. We will continue to recognise, and seek to address, the issue of persecution of Christians globally on account of their faith, as well as the persecution of those of other religions or beliefs.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Jan 2024
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, whether he has held recent discussions with his counterpart in Nigeria on the persecution of Christians in that country.

Promoting the Right to Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) is one of the UK's longstanding human rights priorities. Rising insecurity has impeded on the rights of people of all faiths in Nigeria. The UK supports Nigeria to deliver on its constitutional commitment to FoRB through ongoing development programming and security cooperation. The UK also regularly raises FoRB with the Nigerian Government and will be an active participant in the upcoming UN Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process for Nigeria which provides an opportunity to raise questions and recommendations on a country's human rights record, including FoRB.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
16th Nov 2023
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, if he will take steps with Cabinet colleagues to (a) renegotiate the UK's membership of the European Convention on Human Rights and (b) hold a referendum on remaining a member of that treaty.

The UK has a longstanding tradition of ensuring rights and liberties are protected and abiding by the rule of law, both domestically and internationally. The Government remains committed to that position and will ensure that our laws continue to be fit for purpose and work for the people of the UK. As the Prime Minister has said, if it becomes clear that our domestic laws or international conventions are frustrating our priority of stopping the boats, we are prepared to change those laws and revisit those relationships.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
14th Nov 2023
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, if he will take steps with Cabinet colleagues to (a) renegotiate adhesion to the European Convention on Human Rights and (b) hold a referendum on remaining a party to that treaty.

The UK has a longstanding tradition of ensuring rights and liberties are protected and abiding by the rule of law, both domestically and internationally. The Government remains committed to that position and will ensure that our laws continue to be fit for purpose and work for the people of the UK. As the Prime Minister has said, if it becomes clear that our domestic laws or international conventions are frustrating our priority of stopping the boats, we are prepared to change those laws and revisit those relationships.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
3rd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what progress the Government has made on distribution of the proceeds of the sale of Chelsea Football Club.

The proceeds from the sale of Chelsea FC are frozen in a UK bank account. They cannot be moved or used without a licence from the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI). An independent foundation is being established by humanitarian experts outside the UK Government to manage and distribute the funds for humanitarian purposes in Ukraine. Once the foundation has been established, a licence application will need to be made to move the funds to the foundation. The Government will assess this application against the risks of sanctions circumvention.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what support his Department is providing to the South African Government to investigate corruption in that country.

The UK's Integrated Review sets out the UK Government's commitment to fighting corruption and illicit finance as threats to democratic values and open societies around the world. We are fully committed to supporting South Africa's fight against corruption, which President Ramaphosa has identified as one of his priorities. We work closely with the South African authorities including through our law enforcement agencies to facilitate intelligence sharing, evidence gathering and the recovery of criminal proceeds.

Under the UK Global Anti-Corruption Sanctions regime, the UK imposed sanctions against Ajay Gupta, Atul Gupta, Rajesh Gupta and Salim Essa in May 2021 for their roles in serious corruption which caused significant damage to the South African economy. As a long-standing friend of South Africa, the UK will continue to partner closely with the South African authorities, business and civil society on a shared agenda of security, economic and social issues.

5th Feb 2024
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has made an assessment of the potential merits of including representatives of the police on the Illicit Tobacco Taskforce.

Although HMRC works with the police where appropriate, it is the lead law enforcement agency on tobacco fraud. HMRC has its own powers to conduct criminal investigations, make arrests and seek prosecution (via the Crown Prosecution Service).

The initial members of the taskforce will play a lead role in tackling tobacco fraud, but will also work with all law enforcement and intelligence agencies where appropriate. As the taskforce develops, the Government will regularly review the need to bring in other partners.

Gareth Davies
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
5th Jan 2024
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of bringing (a) social media and (b) telecoms firms into the scope of the mandatory advanced push payment reimbursement regime.

The government takes the issue of Authorised Push Payment (APP) fraud very seriously and is dedicated to protecting the public from this devastating crime. That is why the government legislated in the Financial Services & Markets Act 2023 to enable the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) to require banks and other payment service providers to reimburse APP fraud victims.

The Online Safety Act introduces duties on platforms and services for having processes to remove illegal content, such as fraud. Companies found in breach will face a penalty of up to £18 million or ten per cent of their annual global turnover. The government has also recently agreed an online fraud charter with the world’s biggest tech companies, who have pledged to take additional action to block and remove fraudulent content from their sites.

Bim Afolami
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential implications for his Department’s policies of the Dame Linda Dobbs Review into Lloyds Banking Group’s handling of the HBOS Reading fraud.

As you are aware, Lloyds Banking Group has appointed Dame Linda Dobbs as an independent legal expert to consider whether issues relating to HBOS Reading were investigated and appropriately reported to authorities at the time by Lloyds, following its acquisition of HBOS. The findings from this review have not yet been published.

Once the report from this review has been completed, its findings will be shared with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which will then consider what action is appropriate to take. As the FCA is an independent body, I am unable to comment further on these matters.

Bim Afolami
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Nov 2023
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when his Department plans to respond to the consultation entitled Addressing carbon leakage risk to support decarbonisation, published on 30 March 2023.

As set out in the Autumn Statement, the government is considering responses to the consultation and the evidence to inform policy decisions, and will respond shortly.

Gareth Davies
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
18th Oct 2023
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to introduce a UK carbon border adjustment mechanism; and if he will make a statement.

The government has recently consulted on potential future measures to mitigate carbon leakage risks, including the potential for a UK Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM). The consultation received more than 160 responses from the UK and overseas, including responses from a range of industry sectors and from civil society. The government is considering the evidence to inform policy decisions and will respond in due course.

Gareth Davies
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
28th Mar 2022
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of applying affordability criteria to people wishing to trade shares, commodities, currency or crypto.

The Government is committed to striking a careful balance between improving broad access to financial markets, while also ensuring that appropriate protection measures are in place. This reflects the Government’s broader ambition to ensure that the benefits of corporate growth can be broadly shared, while ensuring financial markets work effectively for all market participants.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is the UK’s independent financial markets conduct regulator and is responsible for protecting consumers. The FCA has published several statements about the potential risks of investing in securities and has warned consumers that that any losses that result from such investments are not always covered under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Similarly, the FCA has banned the sale of cryptoasset derivatives to retail consumers, and has issued a warning stating that consumers who invest in cryptoassets should be prepared to lose their money.

Furthermore, on 18 January 2022, the government set out its intention to legislate later this year to bring certain cryptoassets into financial promotion regulation.

John Glen
Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions officials in his Department have had with representatives of online retailers on online sales taxes.

The Government published a Call for Evidence on 21 July 2020, as part of its Fundamental Review of Business Rates, to gather views from stakeholders on all elements of the Business Rates system and alternatives, including an Online Sales Tax.

Officials engaged with a broad range of stakeholders including online retailers as part of that process.

The Government provided a summary of responses to the Call for Evidence in March 2021. The review will conclude later this year.

Lucy Frazer
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
15th Oct 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has modelled the potential impact on (a) tax receipts and (b) the sport and leisure sector of the Gambling Commission's proposals of affordability checks put forward as part of the Government's review of the Gambling Act 2005.

No assessment has been made. In line with its statutory duties, the independent OBR publish the fiscal impact of any government policy that is introduced as part of the Budget process.

DCMS is considering the responses to its call for evidence, along with Gambling Commission proposals, and expect to publish a response document setting out any conclusions and consulting on next steps by the end of the year.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
15th Mar 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the energy being using to mine cryptocurrency will be discussed at COP26; and whether further regulation on that matter will be on the COP26 agenda.

The Government’s private finance objective for the upcoming COP26 climate change forum is to ensure that every professional financial decision takes climate change into account. The recovery from COVID-19 will determine the mitigation and adaptation pathways for decades to come.

The finance campaign will provide the conditions for a future that is genuinely greener, more resilient and more sustainable than the past. Action on finance underpins all the other COP campaigns: adaptation & resilience, energy transition, nature and zero-emission vehicles. Without the right levels of finance, the rest is not possible.

The Government has already taken actions to signal a commitment to green technology, including a pledge to make Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) aligned financial disclosures mandatory across the economy by 2025, making the UK the first G20 nation to make such a commitment.

Additionally, the Government has committed to the implementation of a green taxonomy. This will allow us to accelerate our work towards a greener financial sector, by providing a common definition for environmentally sustainable economy activities

The Cryptoasset Taskforce, comprising HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority , and the Bank of England, considers the impact of cryptoassets and assesses what, if any, regulation is required in response. The Government stands ready to respond to emerging risks or changes in the market and will continue to monitor developments in cryptoassets.

John Glen
Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many complaints have been received through the FCA Complaints System; and how many complaints in relation to the conduct of the FCA Supervision team have been recorded in the last five calendar years.

Information relating to the number of complaints received by the FCA was published in the FCA’s response to the Complaints Commissioner’s Annual Report in July 2020. This information is available on the FCA’s website.

John Glen
Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
14th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the UK-Rwanda Migration and Economic Development Partnership, whether his Department has held recent negotiations on a similar deal with other countries.

We are unable to comment on discussions or negotiations that may be being held with other countries at this time.

14th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on including student visas for Indian nationals in a future free trade agreement with India.

It is not government policy to comment on live negotiations. Trade and immigration are separate policy areas. Any trade agreement we conclude with other countries must be consistent with the UK’s points-based immigration system and the government’s commitment to bring down net migration to sustainable levels.

20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she will take steps to provide further Safer Street funding for investment in CCTV.

Since the Safer Streets Fund was established in 2020, we have invested £70 million through three rounds – funding a range of evidence-based situational crime prevention measures, including CCTV.

Through Round Four of the Fund, which launched in March, we are investing a further £50 million to tackle and prevent not only neighbourhood crime, but also violence against women and girls and anti-social behaviour. 111 successful projects were announced at the end of July and projects, which include delivery of improved and increased CCTV, will run over the 2022/23 and 2023/24 financial years.

18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what analysis her Department has undertaken to support its position that the seasonal worker visa route may no longer be needed past 2024.

The Seasonal Worker visa route has been extended until the end of 2024, at which point the position will be reviewed. This does not mean we expect there to be no reliance on overseas labour at this point, but the sector cannot be in the same position as it is now.

The number of visas will begin to taper down from 2023, as the government is encouraging all sectors to adapt and make employment more attractive to UK domestic workers through offering training, career options, wage increases and to invest in increased automation technology.

To help with these efforts, Defra is working with industry and DWP to raise awareness of career opportunities within the horticulture sector among resident workers.

This year will see up to 30,000 temporary visas available, but this will be kept under review with the potential to increase by 10,000 if there is strong evidence to do so. Releasing additional quota places does not require a legislative change.

There are no plans to extend the grant period for Seasonal Workers to nine months.

18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent assessment she has made of the potential merits of extending the seasonal worker visa scheme from six to nine months.

The Seasonal Worker visa route has been extended until the end of 2024, at which point the position will be reviewed. This does not mean we expect there to be no reliance on overseas labour at this point, but the sector cannot be in the same position as it is now.

The number of visas will begin to taper down from 2023, as the government is encouraging all sectors to adapt and make employment more attractive to UK domestic workers through offering training, career options, wage increases and to invest in increased automation technology.

To help with these efforts, Defra is working with industry and DWP to raise awareness of career opportunities within the horticulture sector among resident workers.

This year will see up to 30,000 temporary visas available, but this will be kept under review with the potential to increase by 10,000 if there is strong evidence to do so. Releasing additional quota places does not require a legislative change.

There are no plans to extend the grant period for Seasonal Workers to nine months.

18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what criteria need to be met for her Department to bring into effect the additional 10,000 visas in 2022 under the seasonal worker visa scheme.

The Seasonal Worker visa route has been extended until the end of 2024, at which point the position will be reviewed. This does not mean we expect there to be no reliance on overseas labour at this point, but the sector cannot be in the same position as it is now.

The number of visas will begin to taper down from 2023, as the government is encouraging all sectors to adapt and make employment more attractive to UK domestic workers through offering training, career options, wage increases and to invest in increased automation technology.

To help with these efforts, Defra is working with industry and DWP to raise awareness of career opportunities within the horticulture sector among resident workers.

This year will see up to 30,000 temporary visas available, but this will be kept under review with the potential to increase by 10,000 if there is strong evidence to do so. Releasing additional quota places does not require a legislative change.

There are no plans to extend the grant period for Seasonal Workers to nine months.

18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department has taken to make available the additional 10,000 visas under the seasonal worker visa scheme.

The Seasonal Worker visa route has been extended until the end of 2024, at which point the position will be reviewed. This does not mean we expect there to be no reliance on overseas labour at this point, but the sector cannot be in the same position as it is now.

The number of visas will begin to taper down from 2023, as the government is encouraging all sectors to adapt and make employment more attractive to UK domestic workers through offering training, career options, wage increases and to invest in increased automation technology.

To help with these efforts, Defra is working with industry and DWP to raise awareness of career opportunities within the horticulture sector among resident workers.

This year will see up to 30,000 temporary visas available, but this will be kept under review with the potential to increase by 10,000 if there is strong evidence to do so. Releasing additional quota places does not require a legislative change.

There are no plans to extend the grant period for Seasonal Workers to nine months.

13th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Office, how many UK companies have a licence to supply firearms.

Data on how many UK companies have a licence to supply firearms is not available. The Home Office publishes statistics on the number of firearm dealers that are registered with the police in England and Wales. The latest figures on the number of firearm dealers is available from table 6 of the Firearm and Shotgun Certificates in England and Wales Statistics - Financial Year 2018/19publication.

Information on future Home Office statistical release dates can be found in the ‘Research and statistics calendar’.

Statistics on Firearm Certificates on issue in Scotland are published by Police Scotland.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland lists its statistical outputs on the Statistics page of its website, but there are no series that are directly comparable to those for England and Wales.

5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, if he will make an assessment of the effectiveness of the National Planning Policy Framework for providing sufficient land for (a) warehouses and (b) other logistical infrastructure.

No.

Lee Rowley
Minister of State (Minister for Housing)
20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, if he will make a comparative assessment of the potential economic merits of a (a) six and (b) four county and city deal for the East Midlands.

We are committed to ensuring that every part of England that wants a devolution deal will have one by 2030. Our recently announced devolution agreement with the four upper tier authorities of Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire covers an area of over two million people who will benefit from a mayor. The directly elected mayor will take important decisions for their area on transport, skills, and housing, with a new long-term investment fund totalling £1.14bn over 30 years. Devolution must be locally-led, rather than top-down. We will be happy to consider other devolution opportunities in the East Midlands where there is local support.

15th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what support his Department is providing to councils to meet the cost of achieving carbon zero.

The Net Zero Strategy sets out our commitments to enable local areas to deliver net zero. This includes setting clearer expectations on how central and local government interact in the delivery of net zero.

We have published a landing page to help local authorities navigate the large amount of information from all departments and identify initial contact points for officers. In the longer term we have committed to continue working with the local sector towards effective delivery of common goals on the path to net zero

24th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what plans he has to make it easier and cheaper for existing leaseholders to extend to 999 years or purchase the freehold.

Under the current system, too many leaseholders find the process for extending their lease or buying their freehold (a process known as enfranchisement) too complex, lacking transparency and prohibitively expensive.

Through our reforms, the length of a statutory lease extension will increase to 990 years, from 90 years (for flats) and 50 years (for houses). Leaseholders will be able to extend their lease with zero ground rent on payment of a premium.

We will also reform the process of enfranchisement valuation that leaseholders must follow to calculate the cost of extending their lease or buying their freehold. The Government will abolish marriage value, cap the treatment of ground rents at 0.1% of the freehold value, and prescribe rates for the calculations at market value. The Government will also introduce an online calculator, further simplifying the process for leaseholders and ensuring standardisation and fairness for all those looking to enfranchise. These changes to the enfranchisement valuation process will result in substantial savings for some leaseholders, particularly those with less than 80 years left on their lease.

Our leasehold reform measures will be translated into law as soon as possible, starting with the Leasehold Reform (Ground Rents) Bill, which was introduced into Parliament on 12 May. This Bill will be the first part of major two-part legislation to implement leasehold and commonhold reforms in this Parliament.

27th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, when he plans to publish his Department's response to the consultation entitled Mobile homes: A fit and proper person test for park home sites.

We are in the final stages of considering the responses to the “Mobile homes: A fit and proper person test for park home sites” consultation and the engagement with key stakeholders.

We expect to publish the response in spring.

Esther McVey
Minister without Portfolio (Cabinet Office)
14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, , in what circumstances a death certificate will describe a suicide as being related to gambling.

The information recorded by the coroner in the Record of Inquest is dependent on the circumstances of the individual case and is at the coroner’s discretion as an independent judicial office holder in the exercise of their statutory functions. The register is completed by the Registrar using the coroner’s certificate after inquest, and will record the medical cause of death and the conclusion of the inquest. A death certificate contains the same information as the register entry.

The Government recognises that quality information on the circumstances leading to self-harm and suicide, including issues relating to gambling addiction, can support better interventions. However, whilst coroners may be made aware of information about the motivation or contributory factors in a suicide, it cannot be guaranteed that consistent and comprehensive information on a deceased person’s background will be made available to the coroner in every case.

In addition, expecting coroners to routinely assess the motivation for individual suicides would take the coronial role fundamentally beyond its legal parameters, which are to determine who died, and how, when and where they died.

However, in addition to the inquest conclusion, coroners have a statutory duty to make a Prevention of Future Deaths (PFD) report to a person where an investigation gives rise to a concern that future deaths will occur, and the coroner considers that action should be taken to reduce that risk. PFD reports are about learning and improvements to public health, welfare and safety and could, for example, raise concerns relating to gambling addiction where the circumstances of an individual case give rise to a concern. To promote learning, all PFD reports and the responses to them must be provided to the Chief Coroner, and most are published on the judiciary website.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, in what circumstances a coroner will register a suicide as being related to gambling.

The information recorded by the coroner in the Record of Inquest is dependent on the circumstances of the individual case and is at the coroner’s discretion as an independent judicial office holder in the exercise of their statutory functions. The register is completed by the Registrar using the coroner’s certificate after inquest, and will record the medical cause of death and the conclusion of the inquest. A death certificate contains the same information as the register entry.

The Government recognises that quality information on the circumstances leading to self-harm and suicide, including issues relating to gambling addiction, can support better interventions. However, whilst coroners may be made aware of information about the motivation or contributory factors in a suicide, it cannot be guaranteed that consistent and comprehensive information on a deceased person’s background will be made available to the coroner in every case.

In addition, expecting coroners to routinely assess the motivation for individual suicides would take the coronial role fundamentally beyond its legal parameters, which are to determine who died, and how, when and where they died.

However, in addition to the inquest conclusion, coroners have a statutory duty to make a Prevention of Future Deaths (PFD) report to a person where an investigation gives rise to a concern that future deaths will occur, and the coroner considers that action should be taken to reduce that risk. PFD reports are about learning and improvements to public health, welfare and safety and could, for example, raise concerns relating to gambling addiction where the circumstances of an individual case give rise to a concern. To promote learning, all PFD reports and the responses to them must be provided to the Chief Coroner, and most are published on the judiciary website.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
30th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what discussions he has had with the Courts and Probation Service on ensuring that community sentences handed out since the covid-19 pandemic will be fully enforced.

As with other public services, probation had to find alternative ways of working during the pandemic.

Where offenders fail to engage with requirements, we take robust steps to enforce sentences and return them to court for breach.

For unpaid work, one of the key community sentence requirements, we are investing an additional £90m over this and the next 2 years to increase staffing levels and delivering significantly more hours of work – a target of 8 million a year compared to 5 million before the pandemic.

We have also invested £195m to procure over 120 contracts across England and Wales with charities and private sector organisations to deliver specialist services in partnership with probation, to support rehabilitation. These services include:

  • accommodation support,

  • education,

  • training and employment,

  • finance, debt and benefits, and

  • support to address drug dependency.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
20th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many people were sent to prison for non-payment of the TV licence in each of the last ten years.

A person cannot receive a custodial sentence for non-payment of the TV licence fee as the maximum penalty is a fine.

The number of people admitted to prison for failing to pay fines in respect of the non-payment of a TV licence in England and Wales in each of the last ten years can be viewed at the following link: https://questions-statements.parliament.uk/written-questions/detail/2022-07-15/37589.

22nd Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, what steps his Department is taking to support veterans and help tackle the legacy of the Troubles.

The Northern Ireland Troubles (Legacy and Reconciliation) Bill will establish a process that focuses on information recovery, delivering for victims and survivors, providing certainty for veterans and helping Northern Ireland to move forward.