Rachael Maskell Portrait

Rachael Maskell

Labour (Co-op) - York Central

First elected: 7th May 2015


Hunting Trophies (Import Prohibition) Bill
18th Jan 2023 - 25th Jan 2023
Employment Relations (Flexible Working) Bill
30th Nov 2022 - 7th Dec 2022
Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill
15th Jun 2022 - 20th Oct 2022
Charities Bill [HL]
19th Jan 2022 - 25th Jan 2022
Marriage and Civil Partnership (Minimum Age) Bill
5th Jan 2022 - 12th Jan 2022
Shadow Minister (Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Apr 2020 - 14th Dec 2021
Shadow Secretary of State for Employment Rights
7th Jan 2020 - 6th Apr 2020
Shadow Minister (Transport)
3rd Jul 2017 - 7th Jan 2020
Ecclesiastical Committee (Joint Committee)
31st Oct 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Ecclesiastical Committee (Joint Committee)
28th Oct 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
27th Jun 2016 - 1st Feb 2017
Shadow Minister (Defence)
18th Sep 2015 - 27th Jun 2016
Health and Social Care Committee
8th Jul 2015 - 26th Oct 2015


Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Rachael Maskell has voted in 804 divisions, and 5 times against the majority of their Party.

17 Jun 2020 - Health and Personal Social Services - View Vote Context
Rachael Maskell voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 3 Labour No votes vs 135 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 253 Noes - 136
27 Apr 2021 - Delegated Legislation - View Vote Context
Rachael Maskell voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 3 Labour No votes vs 189 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 431 Noes - 89
14 Dec 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Rachael Maskell voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Labour No votes vs 124 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 385 Noes - 100
30 Mar 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Rachael Maskell voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 4 Labour No votes vs 125 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 215 Noes - 188
22 Jun 2022 - Health and Personal Social Services - View Vote Context
Rachael Maskell voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 1 Labour No votes vs 99 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 215 Noes - 70
View All Rachael Maskell 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
Marcus Jones (Conservative)
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
(59 debate interactions)
Alex Norris (Labour (Co-op))
Shadow Minister (Home Office) (Policing)
(56 debate interactions)
Jacob Rees-Mogg (Conservative)
(47 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Department of Health and Social Care
(170 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(70 debate contributions)
Department for Education
(68 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Rachael Maskell's debates

York Central 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).

Petition Debates Contributed

We want suicide spoken about in schools in a safe and age-appropriate way. Speaking about suicide saves lives
The Dept for Education are conducting a review of the RSHE curriculum; this petition calls on the DfE to include suicide prevention within the statutory guidelines of the new curriculum.

The Government should prohibit the sale, use and manufacture of free-running snares under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, putting them in the same category as self-locking snares, which are already illegal.

Ensure any ban fully includes trans people and all forms of conversion therapy.

For the most recent hunting season, Forestry England gave hunting licences for 34 fox & hare “trail hunts”. Despite hunting wild mammals with dogs being illegal, two of the licensed/previously licensed trail hunts have been associated with convictions under the Hunting and Animal Welfare Acts.

In March 2021 Mini the cat was chased and killed by hunting hounds in a quiet residential area.
The Government should back Mini’s Law (Public and Animal Safety Bill 2021) to ensure safety to the public and animals from hunting activity, such as trail hunts and exercise of hunting hounds.

Ensuring statutory adoption pay is available to a self-employed parent in the same way that maternity allowance is available for self-employed new mums would promote an equal and fair society inclusive of all routes to parenthood.

Join other nations in providing a route to safety for refugees. Waive all visa requirements for Ukrainian passport holders arriving in the UK.

The Government needs to change the law so laboratory animals are included in the Animal Welfare Act. Laboratory animals are currently not protected by the Act and are therefore victims of 'unnecessary suffering' (see section 4 of the Act: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2006/45/section/4).

Make it illegal for any employer to mandate vaccination for its employees. This should apply to all public sector (including the NHS, armed forces, care workers), third sector and all private sector.

Current legislation allows for public use of fireworks 16 hours a day, every day, making it impossible for vulnerable groups to take precautions against the distress they can cause. Better enforcement of existing law is insufficient; limiting their sale & use to licensed displays only is necessary.

I would like the UK Government to make it law that nightclubs must search guests on arrival to prevent harmful weapons and other items entering the establishment. This could be a pat down search or metal detector, but must involve measures being put in place to ensure the safety of the public.

Endometriosis and PCOS are two gynaecological conditions which both affect 10% of women worldwide, but both are, in terms of research and funding, incredibly under prioritised. This petition is calling for more funding, to enable for new, extensive and thorough research into female health issues.

Call on the government to consider holding debates in Parliament between MPs and university students to raise/discuss issues that affect them. It will allow students to voice their opinions and concerns about tuition fees of £9250 a year which are too high, particularly as grants have been removed

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.

We ask Government to significantly increase targeted research funding for motor neurone disease (MND).

A new investment of £50m over 5 years could kickstart a pioneering MND Research Institute.

This would lead to better, faster and more definitive research outcomes and hope for those with MND.

The government is helping private firms to protect jobs by paying up to 80% of staff wages through this crisis. If it can do this why can it not help key workers who will be putting themselves/their families at risk and working extra hard under extremely challenging and unprecedented circumstances.

During the pandemic government workers have delivered vital public services and kept our country safe and secure. After ten years in which the real value of civil service pay has fallen, many face hardship. The Government must start to restore the real value of their pay with a 10% increase in 2020.

12 kids in the UK are diagnosed with cancer daily. 1 in 5 will die within 5 years, often of the deadliest types like DIPG (brainstem cancer) - fatal on diagnosis & other cancers on relapse. Yet there has been little, or no, funding for research into these cancers and little, or no, progress.

The threat of covid19 is real. Children can’t be expected to maintain sufficient social distancing to keep this virus from spreading. They are social creatures. Allowing them back to school could cause a new spike in cases. They could bring it back home, even if they are a-symptomatic.

The Government should cancel GCSEs and A Levels in 2021 due to the disruption of Covid-19. By the time students go back to normal learning, 6 months will have passed since schools were closed to most pupils. This has already had a huge impact on the studying of so many.

Schools should move to online learning from 9 December so that all students and school staff have a chance to isolate for two weeks and then can safely meet older relatives.

Close down schools and colleges due to the increase in COVID-19 cases. We are seeing cases of students and teachers catching the virus since schools have reopened.

The University and College Union has repeatedly called on its members to strike. However, strikes are ineffective if students, not employees are the main source of revenue. For this to change, government needs to step in and require universities to reimburse tuition fees lost due to strike action.

All students should be reimbursed of this years tuition fees as universities are now online only due to COVID-19, with only powerpoints online for learning materials which is not worthy of up to £9,250. Furthermore, all assessments are being reconsidered to ‘make do’ and build up credits.

As students are unable to access facilities or continue with their eduction at their university setting in the following semester, we would like to request that the government considers refunding tuition payments for Semester 3.

The quality of online lectures is not equal to face-to-face lectures. Students should not have to pay full tuition fees for online lectures, without experiencing university life. The Government should require UK universities to partially refund tuition fees while online teaching is implemented.

Students across the UK have returned to University to be told our learning will be predominantly online for the foreseeable future. The Government should therefore lower our tuition fees and we should receive a partial refund for the effects this will have on our learning and university experience.

Weddings take months and even years of intricate planning. Myself and many others believe the maximum number of guests authorised at wedding ceremonies should be increased. The number of guests permitted at weddings should be calculated according to venue capacity.

Extend funding to nightclubs, dance music events and festivals as part of the £1.57bn support package announced by the government for Britain's arts and culture sector to survive the hit from the pandemic. #LetUSDance

We want the Education Secretary and the Government to step in and review the exam board’s decision on how GCSE and A-Level grades will be calculated and awarded due to the current coronavirus crisis. We want a better solution than just using our previous data to be the basis of our grade.

A significant number of students will sit their final 2021 examinations. The outcome of which undoubtedly will be their passport, for many of their future life chances and successes. In order for this to be done fairly, it is imperative that the amount of content they are tested on is reduced.

In light of the recent outbreak and lock down, those on maternity leave should be given 3 extra months paid leave, at least. This time is for bonding and social engaging with other parents and babies through baby groups which are vital for development and now everything has been cancelled.


Latest EDMs signed by Rachael Maskell

23rd April 2024
Rachael Maskell signed this EDM as the primary signatory on Tuesday 23rd April 2024

Drug and alcohol treatment services for women

Tabled by: Rachael Maskell (Labour (Co-op) - York Central)
That this House acknowledges that women’s substance use often results from trauma and abuse; notes that women’s access to trauma-informed, safe spaces has been limited, as cuts and contract competition have driven service provision to concentrate on its majority male user-base; welcomes the Centre for Justice Innovation’s guide to commissioning …
1 signatures
(Most recent: 23 Apr 2024)
Signatures by party:
17th April 2024
Rachael Maskell signed this EDM as a sponsor on Wednesday 17th April 2024

The cost of private rent in England and rent controls

Tabled by: Caroline Lucas (Green Party - Brighton, Pavilion)
That this House notes the huge cost of private rents in England and increase in private rents since private tenancies were deregulated and section 21 no-fault evictions were introduced under the Housing Act 1988; recognises the challenges with accurately estimating average private rents but further notes historical data points to …
11 signatures
(Most recent: 22 Apr 2024)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 7
Independent: 2
Green Party: 1
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
View All Rachael Maskell's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Rachael Maskell, 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.


1 Urgent Question tabled by Rachael Maskell

Monday 24th October 2022

2 Adjournment Debates led by Rachael Maskell

5 Bills introduced by Rachael Maskell


A Bill to give local authorities the power to require licences for the conversion of domestic properties into short-term and holiday-let accommodation; to give local authorities the power to issue fines and to remove such licences when safety, noise and nuisance conditions have not been met; to make provision about banning the licensing of such properties in defined geographical areas; to give local authorities the power to vary the rates of local taxes in relation to such properties; to give local authorities the power to restrict the number of days per year for which such properties can be let; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 40%

Last Event - 2nd Reading
Friday 9th December 2022
(Read Debate)

A Bill to provide for a statutory definition of bullying at work; to make provision relating to bullying at work, including to enable claims relating to workplace bullying to be considered by an employment tribunal; to provide for a Respect at Work Code to set minimum standards for positive and respectful work environments; to give powers to the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to investigate workplaces and organisations where there is evidence of a culture of, or multiple incidents of, bullying and to take enforcement action; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading
Monday 11th December 2023
Next Event - 2nd Reading
Friday 7th June 2024
Order Paper number: 1
(Certain to be Debated)

A Bill to give the Monarch powers to remove titles; to provide that such removals can be done by the Monarch on their own initiative or following a recommendation of a joint committee of Parliament; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading
Monday 20th June 2022

A Bill to prevent certain non-statutory payments being made by the Government to former Prime Ministers; to abolish the payment of grants to persons ceasing to hold ministerial offices; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading
Wednesday 26th October 2022

A Bill to provide for a statutory definition of bullying at work; to make provision relating to bullying at work, including to enable claims relating to workplace bullying to be considered by an employment tribunal; to provide for a Respect at Work Code to set minimum standards for positive and respectful work environments; to give powers to the Equalities and Human Rights Commission to investigate workplaces and organisations where there is evidence of a culture of, or multiple incidents of, bullying and to take enforcement action; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading
Tuesday 11th July 2023
(Read Debate)

Latest 50 Written Questions

(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
50 Other Department Questions
4th Mar 2024
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Commissioners have had discussions with the Department of Work and Pensions on the potential impact of the migration of claimants of Child Tax Credit to Universal Credit on the financial position of members of the clergy.

The Ministry Development Team of the Archbishops’ Council estimates that around 1,800 clergy families are currently in receipt of child tax credits. As has been reported, some of these may stand to lose up to £10,000 a year as a result of the planned migration to Universal Credit.

Representations have been made to the Department of Work and Pensions about the impact on clergy who have savings or property for retirement, of the ineligibility for Universal Credit for those with assets or savings over the £16,000 threshold. A key concern is that this will not only affect living standards for clergy families reliant on stipendiary income but will have an adverse effect on all people in tied accommodation seeking to make adequate provisions for their retirement.

The Ministry Development Team also estimates that around 400 of the 1,800 clergy families receiving child tax credits have more than two children and are therefore also likely to be affected by the two-child cap on Universal Credit.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
1st Mar 2024
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, whether she has taken recent steps with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to recruit more (a) people and (b) people from ethnic minority communities onto clinical trials.

In the final report to the Prime Minister on Covid-19 health disparities, published in December 2021, the Minister for Women and Equalities recommended that the National Institute for Health Research and the NHS Race and Health Observatory work to increase ethnic minority representation in research projects and clinical trials. This became action 24 in Inclusive Britain, our response to the Commission on Race and Ethnic disparities, published in March 2022.

In April, we published a report to Parliament on the progress we have made in delivering this and the other 73 actions in Inclusive Britain. We will publish a further update to Parliament in due course.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
19th Oct 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what support the Church of England has provided to (a) churches and (b) other people in (i) Israel and (ii) Gaza since 7 October 2023.

Following the events of 7th October, the Archbishops of York and Canterbury called on Christians, and people of all faiths and none, to pray for the victims of the terrorist attacks by Hamas and for the innocent affected by the conflict.

The Archbishop of Canterbury visited Jerusalem, from 19th – 22nd October 2023, to stand in prayerful solidarity with the Anglican Diocese of Jerusalem following damage to the Al-Ahli Hospital and to show pastoral care and support to all those affected by the war. During the visit, the Archbishop met with those who had lost loved ones as a result of the 7 October attacks. Several dioceses are supporting humanitarian appeals to support the ongoing work of the Al–Ahli Hospital.

The Archbishop of Canterbury’s most recent comments on the issue of Israel and Gaza can be found here: https://www.archbishopofcanterbury.org/news/news-and-statements

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what discussions the Church Commissioners have had with stakeholders on (a) their spending priorities and (b) how these align with the mission of the church.

The budget of the Archbishops' Council is debated at the General Synod, and members can question the chair of the Council’s Finance Committee about spending plans.

The spending plans are designed to align with the five Marks of Mission and the Vision and Strategy of the Church of England. The Five Marks of Mission were developed by the Anglican Communion and adopted at its meeting in 1984 (ACC-6) to draw the global family of Churches together around points of unity. You can find more information about this here: https://www.anglicancommunion.org/mission/marks-of-mission.aspx

For more information about how the Church of England applies the Five Marks of Mission, see here: https://www.churchofengland.org/resources/deeper-god-mission-theology

For more information about the Church of England's Vision and Strategy set out in 2020, see the latest papers here: https://www.churchofengland.org/about/vision-and-strategy

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, whether he has had recent discussions with local dioceses on the potential merits of devolving budgets.

Parishes already have autonomy over their finances. The Church of England has a devolved structure with operational budgets managed at the parish, diocese and national levels. Each level makes day-to-day and long-term spending decisions appropriate to its activity. There are no plans to devolve further budgetary functions.

The Church Commissioners make significant money available each year through the Archbishops' Council to support various initiatives at the diocesan and parish levels. Recent funds have included money to increase opportunity for those with a vocation to train for ministry, supporting clergy posts of first responsibility, funding parish churches upgrading heating systems and giving hardship grants to dioceses to support clergy in need.

The Church Commissioners are now working with a new Strategic Mission and Ministry Investment Board to oversee the distribution of its lowest-income communities and strategic development project funding. The latest report from the Strategic Mission and Misntry Board can be found here: https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2023-06/gs-misc-1348-final-version-2022-sib-annual-report-for-synod.pdf


You can find more about the work of both the Archbishops' Council and the Church Commissioners to support parish and diocesan ministry in their Annual Reports here:

The Archbihsops' Council: https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2023-06/gs-2308-2022-archbishops-council-annual-report.pdf

The Church Commissioners: https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2023-06/gs-misc-1342-church-commissioners-for-england-annual-report-2022-final.pdf

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what assessment the Church has made of the potential merit of separating the funding of upkeep of the material fabric of buildings and of ministers for the cure of souls.

While no specific assessment has been made of separating the upkeep of buildings from the ministers’ cure of souls, the National Church Institutions regularly review the pressure on parishes and clergy in public ministry and are committed to reducing the burdens of administration, operation, and management. The National Church Institutions continue to explore the opportunities to support parishes, and the Church Commissioners have recently launched the £14 million 'Buildings for Mission' fund, which includes funding for Church Building Support Officers and minor fabric repairs. The Church would like to thank the Government for introducing an amendment to the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill to clarify the law around churches being able to receive grant funding from local authorities.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what recent discussions he has had with the Church Commissions on the role of charitable trusts in upkeep of church buildings.

I have not discussed with the Board of the Church Commissioners the role of charitable trusts. The Church Buildings Division of the national Church institutions are available to all parishes, diocese and cathedrals to offer advice and support about grants or maintenance. Parish Resources provides a list of grant funders. Details can be found here: https://www.parishresources.org.uk/resources-for-treasurers/funding/

No major heritage funder, such as the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NHLF), has retained a ring-fenced fund to support the repair and maintain religious buildings and ecclesiastical heritage. However, the NLHF new ten-year strategy will include places of worship alongside other heritage assets.

The Church of England is therefore grateful to the local philanthropists and charitable trusts, large and small, that support the maintenance of our churches and Cathedrals alongside the support from the congregations. Without their support, our nationally and internationally important church architecture and the living heritage of our parish churches and cathedrals would be at even greater risk.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Church has made representations to the Chancellor of the Exchequer on VAT relief for the upkeep of (a) newer and (b) all church buildings.

The most recent discussions between the National Church Institutions and the Treasury about VAT on building repairs took place in 2021-2022 around the regular review of the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme.

Representations were also made in 2022 by the Cathedral and Church Buildings Division of the National Church Institutions to the Secretary of State for Brexit Opportunities suggesting that VAT on repair and restoration of religious buildings be zero-rated as part of the review of EU legislation. This request was supported by the Historic Building Alliance and the wider sector. The Brexit Opportunities Department declined to take the suggestion further at the time.

The Church of England is grateful to the Treasury for continuing the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme while the post-Brexit tax arrangements are bedding in as this gives certainty to churches undertaking repair and building work.

More information about the scheme can be found here: https://listed-places-of-worship-grant.dcms.gov.uk/

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
6th Jul 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what discussions the Church Commissioners have had with stakeholders on involving parishes in discussions over their future.

Parish ministry is central to the day-to-day life of the Church of England. The General Synod, at its July 2023 session, discussed GS 2314 a paper from the Vision and Strategy Department about revitalising parish ministry. You can find the paper here: https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2023-06/gs-2314-revitalising-the-parish.pdf

Regarding the distribution of the Church Commissioners' funds, it will be for the new Strategic Mission and Ministry Board to decide who and how they consult before making their decisions and advice regarding future investment.

The latest report from the Strategic Mission and Misntry Board can be found here: https://www.churchofengland.org/sites/default/files/2023-06/gs-misc-1348-final-version-2022-sib-annual-report-for-synod.pdf

Information about the foundation of the Board and its purpose can be found here: https://www.churchofengland.org/media-and-news/press-releases/new-board-oversee-unprecedented-church-england-investment-mission-and

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
20th Jun 2023
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent assessment she has made of trends in equal pay in (a) York and (b) the UK.

Equal pay refers to men and women performing equal work, or work of equal value. In comparison, the gender pay gap measures the difference between men and women’s average earnings across an organisation.

The Equality Act 2010 contains strong equal pay protections and many employers proactively conduct regular equal pay audits, in order to ensure that they are not acting unlawfully. In 2014, the Government strengthened equal pay protections by introducing mandatory equal pay audits for organisations that lose an equal pay claim.

The Government does not make an assessment of trends in equal pay. Individuals can bring a claim to an Employment Tribunal if they believe their employer is acting unlawfully, and figures on the number of employers doing so can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/tribunals-statistics#employment-tribunal-and-employment-appeal-tribunal-statistics-(gb)

With regard to the gender pay gap, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) publishes data on the national gender pay gap annually, this includes breakdowns by UK regions and areas. The most recent data from the ONS can be accessed here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/earningsandworkinghours/bulletins/genderpaygapintheuk/2022

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the adequacy of the availability of youth workers for meeting the objectives of the Anti-Social Behaviour Action Plan, published on 27 March 2023.

The government has committed to a National Youth Guarantee: that by 2025, every young person will have access to regular clubs and activities, adventures away from home and opportunities to volunteer. This is supported by a three-year investment of over £500 million in youth services, which the Anti-Social Behaviour Action Plan builds on. The Youth Investment Fund, an integral part of the National Youth Guarantee, will invest over £300 million in creating and refurbishing up to 300 youth facilities in levelling up priority areas. Over 80% of top tier local authority areas eligible for the Youth Investment Fund contain at least one anti-social behaviour hotspot.

The Anti-Social Behaviour Action Plan committed an additional £11 million of new funding to provide an extra one million hours of youth support in anti-social behaviour hotspots, the equivalent of around 200 youth clubs opening their doors for an extra night a week. Work is underway to deliver this initiative and further details will be announced in due course.

Additionally, The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) funds the National Youth Agency to maintain a register of qualified youth workers. DCMS is committed to supporting a skilled and trained youth sector workforce and we are working with the National Youth Agency to ensure clear qualification pathways, free training and access to financial support for qualifications. To date DCMS has awarded funding for bursaries for over 2,000 individuals to undertake youth work qualifications who otherwise may have been excluded due to cost.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
21st Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, when she plans to publish the new UK Tentative List of potential future UNESCO world heritage sites.

We are concluding the review of the UK Tentative List and expect to make a public announcement in the Spring.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
16th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what recent discussions she has had with the BBC on extending local content on BBC Local Radio.

The Government recognises the important role that the BBC’s local radio services play in terms of the provision of local news and information, and of community engagement in the local area.

The BBC is operationally and editorially independent from the Government as set out in its Royal Charter, and decisions on service delivery are a matter for the BBC. However, we are disappointed that the BBC is planning to reduce parts of its local radio output. In the Department’s regular conversations with the BBC, we have been clear that it must make sure it continues to provide distinctive and genuinely local radio services, with content that reflects and represents people and communities from all corners of the UK.

The Government also expects Ofcom, as regulator of the BBC, to ensure the BBC is robustly held to account in delivering its public service duties. The Government has already asked Ofcom about how they are considering this issue, and Ofcom has now set out its assessment of the market impact of the BBC’s proposals. I understand that Ofcom is continuing discussions with the BBC on the impact of its proposals on audiences.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
15th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to paragraph 2.28 of the Spring Budget 2023, HC1183, published in March 2023, whether restraints will be placed on the use of the £100 million of funding allocated to charities.

As announced in the recent Spring Budget, the government will provide over £100 million of support for charities and community organisations in England. This will be targeted towards those organisations most at risk, due to increased demand from vulnerable groups and higher delivery costs, as well as providing investment in energy efficiency

Further details of both aspects of the funding, including eligibility criteria and any restraints, will be announced in due course.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
15th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to paragraph 2.28 of the Spring Budget 2023, HC1183, published in March 2023, if she will make it her policy to extend energy bill support for swimming pools to whole leisure centre complexes with swimming pools.

We recognise the importance of ensuring public access to swimming pools, as swimming is a great way for people of all ages to stay fit and healthy. The responsibility of providing this access lies at Local Authority level, and the Government continues to encourage Local Authorities to support swimming facilities.

At the Budget, we announced a dedicated £63 million support package for swimming pools, which is targeted at addressing cost pressures facing public swimming pool providers. It will also help provide investment in energy efficiency measures to reduce future operating costs and make facilities sustainable in the long-term.

Details of the eligibility process will be published shortly, however, this fund will focus on those public swimming pool providers whose cost pressures are most acute, leaving them most vulnerable to closure. The Government intends for community and charitable trusts to be eligible to receive this funding. Sport England will manage a competitive application process and set out further detail on eligibility shortly.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
6th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on the digital creative sector in York; and what steps she is taking to support the growth of that sector.

This Government is committed to supporting R&D and innovation at the nexus between digital and creativity. This is why we, through UK Research and Investment (UKRI) and its bodies including the Arts and Humanities Research Council and Innovate UK, have committed over £100m to programmes supporting R&D in the creative industries over the course of this Spending Review.

We have supported the digital and creative sectors in York through the XR Stories Cluster, which is part of the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Creative Industries Clusters Programme. The XR Stories Cluster is a collaboration between the University of York, Screen Yorkshire, the British Film Institute and local industry. It provided £15 million in investment and expertise for the region’s screen industries to undertake R&D and innovation.

DCMS and UKRI also recently announced £2.6 million of further funding that will consolidate learnings from the Clusters programme, helping to inform further action to support our growth objectives for the sector, which will be set out in further detail in the forthcoming Government Creative Industries Sector Vision.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
20th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has had discussions with the Home Secretary on the potential of the creative and cultural sector in playing a role in diverting young people away from crime.

DCMS engages with the Home Office on the role universal youth services play in helping to reduce the risk factors associated with involvement in youth crime.

The government is investing over £500m in youth services over the next 3 years to deliver the National Youth Guarantee, which states that by 2025 every young person will have access to regular out of school activities, adventures away from home and opportunities to volunteer.

Arts Council England's 2023-26 national portfolio will see a 20% increase in organisations delivering creative and cultural activity for children and young people. This includes organisations which focus on working with young people at risk of becoming involved in crime, and those in young offenders institutions.

In addition, the government has made a £200 million investment over 10 years via the Youth Endowment Fund, to test what works in preventing young people from becoming involved in violence.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
20th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has had recent discussions with the Secretary of State for the Home Department on joint (a) working and (b) funding for youth services to help tackle young people being caught up in crime.

DCMS engages with the Home Office on the role universal youth services play in helping to reduce the risk factors associated with involvement in youth crime.

The government is investing over £500m in youth services over the next 3 years to deliver the National Youth Guarantee, which states that by 2025 every young person will have access to regular out of school activities, adventures away from home and opportunities to volunteer.

Arts Council England's 2023-26 national portfolio will see a 20% increase in organisations delivering creative and cultural activity for children and young people. This includes organisations which focus on working with young people at risk of becoming involved in crime, and those in young offenders institutions.

In addition, the government has made a £200 million investment over 10 years via the Youth Endowment Fund, to test what works in preventing young people from becoming involved in violence.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
20th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of establishing a statutory youth service; and if she will take steps to establish that service.

As set out in section 507B of the Education Act 1996, Local Authorities have a statutory duty to “secure, so far as is reasonably practicable, sufficient provision of educational and recreational leisure-time activities for young people”. Local authorities are required by section 507B(12) to have regard to the statutory guidance when exercising the functions in relation to the statutory duty.

DCMS is committed to completing the review of the guidance underpinning the Local Authority Statutory Duty for Youth Services, previously paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The results will be published in due course.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
20th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department take steps to help ensure equality of access to the creative and cultural assets of a location, including from people from lower socioeconomic groups.

My Department is committed to broadening the accessibility of our cultural and heritage sites across the country to everyone regardless of their background, and Arts Council England’s recent announcement of the 2023-26 National Portfolio – which sees a record number of organisations being funded in more parts of the country than ever before – will significantly improve access to creative and cultural assets.

This Portfolio will support 990 organisations across the whole of England. This is more than ever before, and in more places than ever before, with 276 organisations set to join the portfolio from all over the country. For the first time, Arts Council England collected information about socio-economic background during the application process, and this information can be viewed on the Arts Council website.

The Arts Council is committed to the development of an arts and cultural sector that is representative of modern society and in which there are no barriers to participation. To this end, Arts Councils across the UK are working together with the British Film Institute to launch a free, UK-wide arts access card by early 2024. This scheme was also announced in the new National Disability Strategy.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
20th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what mechanisms her Department uses to assess the economic benefits that creative and cultural activities may contribute to an area; and what steps her Department takes to support local authorities in developing and delivering creative and cultural strategies.

Data collection plays an integral role in how the Department for Culture, Media and Sport assesses the economic contribution of its sectors to the UK economy. DCMS publishes official statistics (DCMS Sectors Economic Estimates) including data on Gross Value Added, employment and business demographics, which are available at regional levels. These data can be found on the DCMS website here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/dcms-sectors-economic-estimates

DCMS recognises the key role that local authorities play in developing, supporting, and delivering cultural and creative services and strategies within their local areas. As the Government's response to the DCMS Select Committee inquiry into Cultural Placemaking and the Levelling Up Agenda (published February 2023) sets out, we are supporting them to do this in a number of ways, including through DCMS’s Cultural Compact initiative, jointly delivered with Arts Council England. DCMS’s arm’s-length bodies work closely with local government on strategic planning and delivery, including through five regional Area Towns Groups. These act as a co-ordinated 'single point of contact' for places in need of guidance on project development and delivery, and provide strategic planning for cultural placemaking and regeneration.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
30th Jan 2023
To ask the hon. Member for Lancaster and Fleetwood, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, whether the Committee has made an assessment of the potential merits of allowing Ukrainian refugees resident in England to vote in local elections.

Neither the Speaker's Committee nor the Electoral Commission has made an assessment of the matters raised. Changes to the franchise are for Parliament to consider, and not for the Electoral Commission.

Where Parliament decides to make changes to the franchise, the Commission will work with government and the electoral community to ensure they are implemented effectively.

26th Oct 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, if she will make an assessment of the potential correlation between the cost and availability of childcare provision and women’s incomes.

We are committed to improving the cost, choice, and availability of childcare. We continue to look at ways to make childcare more affordable and to encourage families to use government-funded support they are entitled to.

In assessing the impact of its free childcare entitlements, the department regularly reviews the impact on parents from a range of different research publications. This includes the Families and the Labour Market release (from the Office for National Statistics) and the Childcare and Early Years Survey of Parents.

As part of the Childcare and Early Years Survey of Parents, we also regularly ask parents about the effect that 30 hours free childcare has on families, including their ability to work. Almost 2 in 5 families using the 30 hours offer said that without the entitlement they would work fewer hours.

26th Oct 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps he is taking with Cabinet colleagues to support single parents who are women into employment by removing barriers to childcare.

Over the last decade we have seen growth in the number of women in full-time work, and we are committed to ensuring that every woman is able to reach her full potential in her working life. In June to August 2022, 19.2% of people (1.7 million people) were economically inactive as a result of looking after family/home and of working age (16 to 64 years). This is part of a long-term declining trend since comparable data started to be collected June to August 1993 when it was 34.6% (3 million people). We continue to carefully monitor these figures.

We are also committed to improving the cost, choice, and availability of childcare. We continue to look at ways to make childcare more affordable and to encourage families to use the government-funded support they are entitled to.

All parents of three- and four-year-olds are eligible for 15 hours free early education per week. Parents who earn the equivalent of 16 hours per week at National Minimum or Living Wage can benefit from the full 30 hours free childcare, which can help save families around £6,000 a year per child. Working parents on Universal Credit can claim back up to 85% of childcare costs every month.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
12th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what progress the Government is making on each of the commitments it made at COP26, and whether it is on track to deliver all of them.

Delivery of the Glasgow Climate Pact is the top priority for the UK Presidency. The UK and Egypt recently convened Ministers in Copenhagen to discuss progress and heard strong commitment to deliver.

Since COP26, and following the call in the Glasgow Climate Pact, there have been 16 NDC submissions. A further eight National Adaptation Plans have been published, meaning 2 billion people are now covered by adaptation plans globally. We recently held the 5th Energy Transition Council Meeting where countries reinforced their commitment to implement tailored solutions to decarbonise their power sectors more rapidly. Over 180 countries, regions, cities, and businesses have now signed up to the Zero Emission Vehicles Declaration.

In total, six countries have endorsed the Agriculture Breakthrough, with Morocco and Sweden endorsing at Stockholm+50. On the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forests and Land Use, where 145 countries committed to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030, we are working closely with key signatories to establish a new annual meeting to drive the delivery of this goal.

We have continued the push to mobilise finance to support energy transition, including the announcement of progress on four new Just Energy Transition Partnerships at the G7 summit. We are working with international partners to meet the $100bn delivery plan for public finance and the doubling of adaptation finance by 2025.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
6th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what assessment she has made of the (a) gender, (b) ethnicity and (c) disabled person's pay gap in (i) Yorkshire and (ii) England.

The national gender pay gap has fallen significantly under this government - and by approximately a quarter in the last decade. The ONS publishes data on the national gender pay gap annually, with regional breakdowns.

On ethnicity pay gaps; in “Inclusive Britain”, the response to the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities’ report, we accepted the recommendation to publish guidance for employers to support a voluntary approach to ethnicity pay reporting. Work on this is already underway. The ONS published national ethnicity pay gap data in 2019, with additional breakdowns by region.

With regard to the disability pay gap, we recognise that one of the greatest challenges is opening up opportunity in the workplace. We recently consulted on Disability Workforce Reporting. This focused on reporting on disability employment, as opposed to pay gaps. The ONS published national disability pay gap data in 2021, broken down by UK country with regional estimates.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
30th Jun 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what progress she has made on tackling (a) gender, (b) ethnicity and (c) disabled persons pay gaps.

The national gender pay gap has fallen significantly under this government - and by approximately a quarter in the last decade. In 2017, we introduced regulations requiring large employers to publish the differences in average salaries and bonuses for men and women every year. The regulations have helped to motivate employers, and focus attention on improving equality in the workplace.

On ethnicity pay gaps; in ‘Inclusive Britain’, we accepted the recommendation to publish guidance for employers to support a voluntary approach to ethnicity pay reporting. Work on this is already underway and we are ensuring that it reflects what we have learned from gender pay gap reporting.

With regard to the disability pay gap, we recognise that one of the greatest challenges is opening up opportunity in the workplace. We recently consulted on Disability Workforce Reporting. This focused on reporting on disability, as opposed to pay gaps, for large employers; and explored both voluntary and mandated workplace transparency.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
16th Jun 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps she is taking to tackle inequalities for people from minoritized communities due to their protected characteristics.

On 17 March 2022 I published ‘Inclusive Britain’, which sets out a ground-breaking action plan to tackle negative ethnic disparities, promote unity and build a fairer Britain for all.

Work is under way to deliver the 74 actions in Inclusive Britain, which will help to close outcome gaps between ethnic groups in education, employment, health and the criminal justice system.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
26th Apr 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of establishing a principle of respect and dignity for people with protected characteristics.

Every individual has protected characteristics, so I think the hon. Member is describing the UK's commitment to the European Convention on Human Rights. In addition, the Equality Act 2010 provides protection for everyone against behaviour which unlawfully violates their dignity because of a protected characteristic, and the General Duty of the Equality and Human Rights Commission includes encouraging and supporting the development of a society in which there is respect for the dignity and worth of each individual.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
30th Mar 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what discussions he has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) relevant stakeholders on integrating divestment in Russian supply of oil and gas with COP26 objectives to cut climate degradation.

Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine demonstrates the integral link between climate change, energy security and the vulnerability caused by our dependence on fossil fuels. I have discussed these matters with stakeholders in the UK and around the world, whilst recognising that governments need to deal with their immediate and acute energy needs.

Though the United Kingdom is not heavily reliant on imports of Russian hydrocarbons, the Government has set out steps to bolster UK energy security in the recent British Energy Security Strategy.

Through the policies and targets included within the Strategy, the UK will source much more clean, home-grown power from renewables and nuclear energy, reduce demand for energy by investing in efficiency measures, while ensuring there is a fair and managed transition with respect to oil and gas reserves in the North Sea.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
10th Feb 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what progress he has made since the COP26 conference on ending the use of coal.

At COP26, all parties agreed to phase down the use of coal for the first time ever. The Global Coal to Clean Power Transition Statement gained over 70 signatures from countries, subnationals, and organisations, and the Powering Past Coal Alliance grew to 165 members.

In 2022, the UK COP Presidency remains fully committed to consigning coal power to history. The Energy Transition Council will run until at least 2025, and is ensuring that countries can access investment in clean power that is more attractive than new coal plants. We are working with international partners to secure more signatories to the UN No New Coal Power Compact and the Powering Past Coal Alliance. The UK will also support the implementation of ambitious announcements made at COP26, including the South Africa Just Energy Transition Partnership, the Green Grids Initiative, and the Just Transition Declaration. We must accelerate action to cut the global new coal plant pipeline, and to retire existing coal generation capacity.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
10th Feb 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what progress he has made on securing additional funding for climate change initiatives in developing countries ahead of COP27.

By COP26, 95% of the largest developed country climate finance providers made new, climate finance commitments to support developing countries. These have delivered significant progress towards the $100 billion goal, which will be reached by 2023 and continue rising through to 2025. It is now likely that $500 billion will be mobilised over the period 2021-25.

Parties agreed to at least double their collective provision of climate finance for adaptation to developing countries from 2019 levels by 2025. Parties also made new pledges to the Adaptation Fund of over $350m, around three times the previous highest level, and contributions to the Least Developed Country Fund worth $600m. The UK, with Fiji, also initiated the Taskforce on Access to Climate Finance which will run trials with five developing countries to support faster, easier access to climate finance. The UK committed £100 million to support implementation of the Taskforce’s approach. Mobilising finance to developing countries remains a top priority for the UK COP Presidency in 2022.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what progress has been made with the Clergy Discipline Measure review.

The Lambeth Working Group on the Review of the Clergy Discipline Measure, chaired by the former Bishop at Lambeth, presented its final paper to the General Synod in July 2021. That paper recommended that the Clergy Discipline Measure be replaced by new legislation which provides for a wider approach to issues of discipline, including the creation of a system which allows for the determination of lesser types of misconduct and grievance. This work is now being taken forward by a smaller Implementation Group, chaired by the Bishop of Worcester. That Group intends to finalise their proposals over the coming months and consult with various interested bodies between February and May 2022 with a view to presenting detailed legislative proposals to General Synod in July 2022.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, when a presentation of proposals to reform the Clergy Discipline Measure will be made available to members of the Ecclesiastical Committee.

The Ecclesiastical Committee have not, as yet, been formally apprised of the recommendations made either by the Lambeth Working Group or the Implementation Group. The Implementation Group would be very happy to present their proposals to the Ecclesiastical Committee as part of the ongoing work over reforming clergy discipline. The Group envisage being in a position to do this from May 2022.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Ecclesiastical Committee has been kept informed of the progress of the review of the Clergy Discipline Measure.

The Ecclesiastical Committee have not, as yet, been formally apprised of the recommendations made either by the Lambeth Working Group or the Implementation Group. The Implementation Group would be very happy to present their proposals to the Ecclesiastical Committee as part of the ongoing work over reforming clergy discipline. The Group envisage being in a position to do this from May 2022.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
25th Nov 2021
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, whether she has plans to move civil servant jobs in (a) her Department and (b) non-departmental public bodies and government agencies associated with her Department to York.

The Cabinet Office has committed to increasing its presence from c. 400 to c. 600 in York. This will be a mix of Senior Civil Service and delegated grades covering a range of professions such as HR, Commercial, Policy, Security, Finance, Project Delivery and Operational Delivery. As part of this, the Equality Hub has commenced recruiting roles into York.

Currently there are no plans for non-departmental public bodies and government agencies associated with the Cabinet Office to move jobs to York.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
16th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what his priorities will be for COP27.

The Glasgow Climate Pact, combined with increased ambition across adaptation, finance and mitigation means that 1.5°C remains in sight, but only with concerted and immediate global efforts. So our Presidency year, which started in Glasgow and will end at COP27 in November 2022, will continue to focus on high ambition and driving ambition across our four goals: mitigation, adaptation, finance and collaboration. Through the UK’s Presidency year, we will build on the legacy of the Glasgow Climate Pact.

The Glasgow Climate Pact requests Parties to revisit and strengthen the 2030 targets in their nationally determined contributions as necessary to align with the Paris Agreement temperature goal by the end of 2022, taking into account different national circumstances. We will continue to use the year of our COP26 Presidency to keep up the pressure to deliver on the commitments made and go further and faster.

We will continue to demonstrate strong UK leadership over our Presidency year, working with our COP26 partners Italy, the incoming COP Presidency Egypt, the Chairs of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies, the UNFCCC Secretariat, parties and civil society partners to build on the momentum and high ambition from COP26.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
16th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what his priorities are for the remainder of his presidency of COP26.

The Glasgow Climate Pact, combined with increased ambition across adaptation, finance and mitigation means that 1.5°C remains in sight, but only with concerted and immediate global efforts. So our Presidency year, which started in Glasgow and will end at COP27 in November 2022, will continue to focus on high ambition and driving ambition across our four goals: mitigation, adaptation, finance and collaboration. Through the UK’s Presidency year, we will build on the legacy of the Glasgow Climate Pact.

The Glasgow Climate Pact requests Parties to revisit and strengthen the 2030 targets in their nationally determined contributions as necessary to align with the Paris Agreement temperature goal by the end of 2022, taking into account different national circumstances. We will continue to use the year of our COP26 Presidency to keep up the pressure to deliver on the commitments made and go further and faster.

We will continue to demonstrate strong UK leadership over our Presidency year, working with our COP26 partners Italy, the incoming COP Presidency Egypt, the Chairs of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies, the UNFCCC Secretariat, parties and civil society partners to build on the momentum and high ambition from COP26.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
16th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the likelihood of achieving a new global deal on coal by COP27.

At COP26, all parties agreed to phase down the use of coal. The Glasgow Climate Pact secured its specific mention for the first time ever. The Global Coal to Clean Power Transition Statement gained 77 signatures from countries, subnationals, and organisations, and the Powering Past Coal Alliance grew to 165 members. The Just Energy Transition Partnership for South Africa was also announced, which will demonstrate the strength of a just transition from coal to clean power.

Consigning coal to history remains a priority for the UK in our COP Presidency year. The UK Presidency will work alongside the Powering Past Coal Alliance, Energy Transition Council, and other international mechanisms to ensure that there is more progress on moving from coal to clean power by COP27. This includes a strategic partnership between the Energy Transition Council and the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet, a $10 billion fund aiming to deliver clean, renewable energy to 1 billion people in developing countries. Clean power is already cheaper than coal in most of the world, generating more jobs, and giving people cleaner air as well as a safer climate. We want to help all countries access those benefits as soon as possible.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
3rd Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he has taken to ensure that children and young people have been able to participate in COP26.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer to PQ 61212 on 1 November.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he plans to take to help ensure that environmental and climate charities are facilitated in supporting the outcomes of COP26.

With their links to on-the-ground communities, environmental and climate charities drive change. Their knowledge and leadership is necessary to deliver effective local climate solutions. This is why the COP Unit has a dedicated civil society and youth engagement team which works with environmental and climate charities to amplify the voices of those most impacted by climate change.

The COP President also established an International COP26 Civil Society and Youth Advisory Council. This group met regularly in the run up to COP26. Its insight was fundamental to the planning and delivery of the summit.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he will take to include civil society in the delivery of COP26 outcomes.

With their links to on-the-ground communities, environmental and climate charities drive change. Their knowledge and leadership is necessary to deliver effective local climate solutions. This is why the COP Unit has a dedicated civil society and youth engagement team which works with environmental and climate charities to amplify the voices of those most impacted by climate change.

The COP President also established an International COP26 Civil Society and Youth Advisory Council. This group met regularly in the run up to COP26. Its insight was fundamental to the planning and delivery of the summit.

3rd Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps the Government is taking to help ensure transparent accountability of (a) businesses and (b) public sector bodies on their delivery of COP26 objectives.

We have been encouraging all businesses to set science-based emission reduction targets by joining the Race to Zero. This has been one of the requirements for businesses to participate in UK-managed spaces of COP26. Race to Zero members commit to report publicly both progress against interim and long-term targets, as well as the actions being taken, at least annually.

The government has also recently announced three distinct new policies that can help public procurers fully embed net zero into their work. One of these requires suppliers who are bidding on central government contracts (over £5 million p/a in value) to commit to achieving net zero by 2050 and to publish a Carbon Reduction Plan. We are sending a clear signal to the market: data on carbon impact - and immediate ambition to reduce it - will be increasingly important in how we choose to do business.

10th Sep 2021
To ask the hon. Member for Broxbourne, representing the House of Commons Commission, if the Commission will publish the (a) available data on carbon dioxide levels in locations in the House of Commons and (b) risk assessment of the effect of levels of carbon dioxide in the House of Commons on the transmission of covid-19.

Guidance has been published by the Health and Safety Executive on ventilation and air conditioning during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This, along with the latest Government guidance has been incorporated into the Parliamentary Covid risk assessment.

Carbon Dioxide monitoring has been carried out across the estate in recent months. No readings on the estate have met or exceeded Government thresholds, which would recommend further action be taken. Should any readings exceed recommended levels these would then be managed and mitigated against, in line with other risks, and consulted on in the normal way.

6th Sep 2021
To ask the President of COP26, if he will ensure that the potential merits of a carbon border tax or carbon border adjustment mechanism is discussed at the COP26 summit.

Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanisms (CBAM) are not on the agenda for discussion at COP26. The agenda at COP26 will be determined by mandates as agreed by Parties at previous COPs and adopted by consensus.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
15th Jul 2021
To ask the President of COP26, if the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism is on the agenda for COP26.

The Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanisms (CBAMs) are not on the agenda for COP26. The agenda at COP26 will be determined by mandates as agreed by Parties at previous COPs and adopted by consensus.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
8th Jul 2021
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what provisions will be put in place for people who remain concerned about covid-19 infection as singing is reintroduced in churches.

The National Church Institutions as part of the DCMS and MHCLG Places of worship Task Force has produced fresh guidance for Parishes to help navigate the current situation. It reflects Government guidance as we move to step 4 of their roadmap as well as that from public health bodies and will continue to be updated as that evolves.

The guidance provided by the National Church Institutions it is hoped will inform local clergy and PCC’s in their decision-making. The circumstances in each parish may differ due to space, age and heath demographic, ability to ventilate the building or a variety of other concerns.

The full guidance can is available here: https://www.churchofengland.org/resources/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
1st Jul 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he is taking to engage school age children in the lead up to COP26.

On 10 June, we published the Together for our Planet Schools Pack which was sent to schools across the UK. The pack is designed to encourage conversations about climate change, engage students on COP26, and help schools celebrate students who are going “One Step Greener” by recycling, walking to school, or taking other steps to tackle climate change. In April, we partnered with Blue Peter to launch a writing competition which asked children to submit a story about something that is affecting our planet today. We will transform the winning work into an animated film which will premiere at COP26 to inspire urgent climate action.

The COP Unit has a dedicated youth engagement team who are working to ensure youth voices are heard at COP26 and in its legacy. I have set up a Civil Society and Youth Advisory Council so that young activists are informing our planning for an inclusive COP26. The UK is also working in partnership with the Italian government Government, who will host the Pre-COP and Youth4Climate event, bringing together 400 young climate leaders from across the world.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
1st Jul 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent discussions he (a) has had and (b) plans to have to halt deforestation on the planet; and what estimate he has made of when that will be achieved.

As incoming President of COP26 and recently as President of the G7, the UK is putting nature and forests at the heart of our response to tackling climate change.

In the recently published G7 Leaders’ ‘2030 Nature Compact’, we set out a G7 ambition to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030 and to tackle deforestation, including by supporting sustainable supply chains and demonstrating clear domestic action. To achieve this, the UK has brought together agricultural commodity consumer and producer countries in the Forest, Agriculture and Commodity Trade (FACT) dialogue. The UK is also helping to build the LEAF coalition, which aims to mobilise $1 billion in financing, and is expected to become one of the largest ever public-private efforts to protect tropical forests and support sustainable development.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)