Parliamentary Partnership Assembly

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Wednesday 8th December 2021

(5 months, 2 weeks ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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To resolve that this House:

(1) takes note of the provision in Article 11 of the UK–EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement for the establishment of a Parliamentary Partnership Assembly (PPA) consisting of Members of the European Parliament and of Members of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which:

(a) may request relevant information regarding the implementation of that agreement and any supplementing agreement from the EU–UK Partnership Council established by Article 7 of that agreement, which shall then supply the EU–UK PPA with the requested information;

(b) shall be informed of the decisions and recommendations of the EU–UK Partnership Council; and

(c) may make recommendations to the EU–UK Partnership Council;

(2) agrees that a delegation from the UK Parliament consisting of 35 members drawn from both Houses should participate in such an Assembly; and

(3) takes note of the first report from the House of Lords Commission, EU–UK Parliamentary Partnership Assembly (1st Report, HL Paper 114) and confirms that the procedures currently applying to the nomination, support and funding of delegations to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly should apply to the delegation to the EU–UK PPA.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, before I speak to the Motion, I extend my condolences to the family and friends of my late noble friend Lord Denham who, as the Lord Speaker announced earlier, died at the weekend. Lord Denham served this House with great distinction for more than 70 years, including as Government Chief Whip for 12 years.

The Motion standing in the Leader’s name invites the House to agree in principle to its participation in the EU-UK Parliamentary Partnership Assembly, or PPA. The House of Commons agreed a Motion in the same terms on Monday this week, and the European Parliament decided its intention to participate on 5 October. The House of Lords Commission discussed the participation of this House at its meeting on 16 November and in its first report of this Session set out some background to help inform the House’s decision today. That report was published on 25 November.

The Motion is the culmination of many months of careful and patient dialogue between the two Houses and with the European Parliament, much of which has been carried out on behalf of this House by the noble Earl, Lord Kinnoull. I would like to put on record my thanks for the work that he and his team have done to help get the PPA off the ground. I beg to move.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Thursday 16th September 2021

(8 months, 1 week ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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That, in the event of the Health and Social Care Levy Bill having been brought from the House of Commons, Standing Order 44 (No two stages of a Bill to be taken on one day) be dispensed with on Monday 11 October to allow the Bill to be taken through its remaining stages that day.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move the Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper.

Health and Social Care

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Thursday 9th September 2021

(8 months, 2 weeks ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait The Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Evans of Bowes Park) (Con)
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I thank the noble Lord and the noble Baroness for their comments, but I am slightly surprised that they have not welcomed our announcement of a new £36 billion package to help tackle NHS backlogs, reform adult social care and bring the health and social care system together on a long-term, sustainable footing. That is a hugely significant amount of money to help our precious NHS and to solve a problem that all across this House have acknowledged for many years.

We have indeed held many discussions throughout the year with leading members of the sector, specifically on reform, and will of course continue to do so. We have committed to spending an additional £5.6 billion on social care in England, across the next three years. As the noble Baroness rightly says, the deferred payments agreement remains in existence to enable people to use the value of their home, if they need to, without selling it. Both the noble Baroness and the noble Lord asked why this involves national insurance. To raise the sums needed for this significant investment in the NHS and to reform social care, only a broad-based tax, such as VAT, income tax or NICs, is able to do so. NICs already ring-fences funds for the NHS and successive Governments have increased it, so there is precedent for our belief that this is the best and fairest way.

The noble Lord is absolutely right: the levy will be ring-fenced for health and social care. HMRC will send funds to the health bodies in all four nations of the UK and, by 2023, to social care funding bodies, such as MHCLG, which will deliver it through local authorities. As I say, part of the reason for using NICs is that the more you earn, the more you pay. I am sure noble Lords are aware that a typical base-rate taxpayer, earning £24,100, will contribute roughly £180 a year, whereas a typical higher-rate taxpayer, earning £67,100, will contribute £715 a year. The highest-earning 14% of people will pay around half the revenues. The 6.2 million lowest earners will be kept out of the levy. The use of NICs also means that the cost of the levy will be shared between individuals and businesses; however, 40% of all businesses will pay nothing extra.

The noble Lord asked about tackling the backlog in the NHS. We will spend £2 billion this year, which is double our previous commitment to tackle the backlog. In addition, we plan to spend more than £8 billion in the following three years, from 2022-23 to 2024-25. On the waiting list, we do not know how many people who did not come forward for help from the NHS during the pandemic will now seek treatment, so plucking numbers out of the air about the size of the waiting list is not helpful. But I can certainly assure both the noble Lord and the noble Baroness that the funding announced will deliver 9 million more checks, scans and procedures until 2024-25. This is a significant investment and, over the next three years, will be the biggest catch-up programme in NHS history.

The noble Baroness asked about local government. She is aware that, in 2021-22, we have provided councils with access to over £1 billion of additional funding for social care, on top of the significant funding provided to help the sector. In the spending review, we are also committed to ensuring that local authorities have access to sustainable funding for core budgets. This announcement includes funding to enable local authorities to move towards paying providers a fair rate for care, which should drive up the quality of adult social care services, improve workforce conditions and increase investment. The funding package covers the costs to local government of implementing the charging reforms, including the cap, the increased capital limit moving towards paying a fair rate for care, which I just mentioned, and associated implementation costs.

The noble Lord asked about self-funders. As he knows, under the current system, individuals who fund their care often pay more than individuals who are funded through their local authority for equivalent care. Under this new system, self-funders will have a choice to ask their local authority to commission their care on their behalf, which means that individuals fully funding their own care could choose to benefit from the market power of local authorities. We will be publishing a consultation document on the details of these proposals next month.

On other issues, we are investing more in supported housing and exploring other innovative housing solutions to support more people to live independently, as the noble Baroness said. As part of the additional £5.4 billion of investment announced, we will fund an extension to the established disabled facilities grant to enable more people to live independently in their own homes.

On the integration work, the House will be looking at the Health and Care Bill shortly, before Christmas, when it begins its passage through this House. That is laying the groundwork for reform, and we will see an improved oversight of how social care is commissioned and delivered. It will facilitate a greater integration between health and care services, on which these reforms build. As we have said, we will work further with the sector and more broadly to coproduce a comprehensive national plan for supporting and enabling integration between health and social care, but I am afraid that I cannot go any further than saying that the White Paper will be published later this year.

Finally, the social care workforce has worked incredibly during this pandemic. Our investment of £500 million across three years will deliver new qualifications, progression pathways and well-being and mental health support, which is critical. We will continue to support the fantastic 5.4 million carers to have the support, advice and respite they need.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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I remind noble Lords that there will no doubt be lots of questions for the Leader, but the Companion is clear that they should be brief. This should not be the occasion for a separate debate, which I am sure will come later.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Monday 12th July 2021

(10 months, 2 weeks ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Baroness Evans of Bowes Park
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That Standing Order 44 (No two stages of a Bill to be taken on one day) be dispensed with on Thursday 15 July to allow the Supply and Appropriation (Main Estimates) Bill to be taken through its remaining stages that day.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move the Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Wednesday 16th June 2021

(11 months, 1 week ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Baroness Evans of Bowes Park
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That Standing Order 73 (Affirmative Instruments) be dispensed with to allow motions to approve affirmative instruments laid before the House under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 to be moved today, notwithstanding that no report from the Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments on the instruments will have been laid before the House.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move the Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Monday 15th March 2021

(1 year, 2 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Baroness Evans of Bowes Park
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That the National Security and Investment Bill be reported from the Grand Committee in respect of proceedings up to and including Tuesday 9 March; and that the order of commitment of 4 February be discharged and the remainder of the bill be committed to a Committee of the Whole House.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move the Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Wednesday 30th December 2020

(1 year, 4 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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That, in the event of the European Union (Future Relationship) Bill being brought from the House of Commons, Standing Orders 46 (No two stages of a Bill to be taken on one day) and 47 (Commitment of Bills) be dispensed with to allow the Bill to be taken through all its stages today and the Committee to be negatived.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move this first Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper. This Motion will allow us to take all stages of the European Union (Future Relationship) Bill later today. If the provisions in the Bill are to come into force before the end of the transition period, Royal Assent must be notified during today’s Sittings of both Houses. I am grateful to Members in the usual channels for the constructive discussions that we have had about how best to use the short amount of time available to us today. It was agreed that the priority should be to enable as many Back-Benchers as possible to take part in the Second Reading debate, which is what we have done.

The arrangements for consideration of this Bill are clearly not in keeping with our usual practices and I want to be clear that I do not want our proceedings today to be taken as any sort of precedent as to how legislation should be considered in future. We have jointly taken a pragmatic decision, across the main opposition parties and keeping the Convener informed, about how best to use the limited time available.

I inform the House that, in order that our main debate on the Bill can start as planned, if this debate, including any votes on the Motion or any amendments to it, extends significantly beyond 1 pm, the second Business of the House Motion will not be moved and the debate on the coronavirus regulations will not take place today.

Amendment to the Motion

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Tuesday 3rd November 2020

(1 year, 6 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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That Standing Order 72 (Affirmative Instruments) be dispensed with on Wednesday 4 November to enable a motion to approve an affirmative instrument laid before the House under section 45 of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 to be moved, notwithstanding that no report from the Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments on the instrument will have been laid before the House; and, notwithstanding the Business of the House Motion on 4 June, any debate on such an affirmative instrument shall be limited to 4 hours.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Lord Privy Seal, I beg to move the Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper. This Motion will allow the House to debate the statutory instrument containing the new national health protection measures tomorrow. The regulations will be published and laid before the House today; they are due to come into force on Thursday. The debate will be extended from the usual maximum of one and a half hours to four hours. These are significant national measures that warrant debate at the earliest opportunity and I am grateful to the usual channels for their support in making the necessary arrangements to debate them tomorrow.

Because of this decision, the consideration of the Medicines and Medical Devices Bill in Grand Committee tomorrow will need to conclude at around 4.30 pm, which is earlier than originally planned. Further dates for this important Bill will be advertised later in the week. The debate on the regulations will take place before both the Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments and the Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee have had the opportunity to consider them. I thank both committees for the important scrutiny work that they have been doing in respect of the various health protection regulations and, in particular, for the pace at which they have been doing it. The Government will, of course, take note of anything that either committee has to say when it reports.

Covid-19 Update

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Tuesday 3rd November 2020

(1 year, 6 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Baroness Evans of Bowes Park (Con)
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Of course we recognise that religious practice is of fundamental importance to millions of people across the country. That is why we are enabling individual prayer in places of worship for those who practise that way. We absolutely understand that, for people of faith who take part in communal worship, it will be extremely disappointing news that it cannot continue for the next month, and, of course, it will be difficult for those whose festivals fall during this time. We entirely understand the issue, but we are committed to ensuring that we work collectively to bring the R rate down so that in December we can, we hope, start to get back to normality once we have suppressed the virus, which is what we are all intending to do.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, I remind noble Lords that this time is meant for questions not statements, which will allow all noble Lords who want to to get in.

Lord Kakkar Portrait Lord Kakkar (CB) [V]
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My Lords, I draw attention to my registered interests. The lockdown for the coming month in England must achieve a substantial reduction in coronavirus circulation in the community so that hospitals are not overwhelmed by Covid-19 admissions and are able to continue to admit Covid-19 and non-Covid patients requiring urgent and elective care in future. How will Her Majesty’s Government use this one-month period better to prepare our National Health Service and our public health systems to secure these objectives so that further lockdowns will not be necessary?

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Tuesday 28th July 2020

(1 year, 9 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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That with effect from 2 September until further Order members may participate remotely as well as physically in sittings of the Grand Committee (“hybrid Grand Committee”), and that for the purposes of sittings of the hybrid Grand Committee:

1. The procedure shall follow, so far as practical, procedure in Grand Committee save that—

a) no member may participate unless they have signed up to the Speakers’ List,

b) speakers shall be called by the Chair, and

c) sittings may be adjourned between items or classes of business at the discretion of the Chair.

2. Debates on motions relating to statutory instruments and measures in the hybrid Grand Committee (including related instruments debated together) shall be time-limited to 1 or 1½ hours, and this time limit may be varied in accordance with this paragraph with the unanimous agreement of members taking part in the hybrid Grand Committee at the commencement of that sitting.

3. Motions for general debate shall be time limited to 3 hours and this time limit may be varied with the unanimous agreement of the members taking part at the commencement of proceedings;

4. No amendments to bills may be tabled after the deadline prescribed by the Procedure and Privileges Committee.

5. The provisions of this Order shall be applied in accordance with guidance issued under the authority of the Procedure and Privileges Committee from time to time, which may vary the provisions of the Companion to the Standing Orders insofar as they apply to sittings of the hybrid Grand Committee.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move the first Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Tuesday 14th July 2020

(1 year, 10 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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That Standing Order 46 (No two stages of a Bill to be taken on one day) be dispensed with on Monday 20 July to allow the Business and Planning Bill to be taken through its remaining stages that day and that therefore, in accordance with Standing Order 48 (Amendments on Third Reading), amendments shall not be moved on Third Reading.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, the Business and Planning Bill is an important part of the legislative response to Covid-19. If the Bill is to reach Royal Assent before the summer and therefore be of use to businesses, it must complete its passage through this House by the close of play on Monday next week. It had been agreed through the usual channels to take Committee yesterday and then Report and Third Reading next Monday. Because of the relatively slow progress made yesterday, the Committee stage will need to continue and conclude today. Those noble Lords involved in the Bill were notified last night. This will delay the start of our further consideration of the Agriculture Bill. Those participants have also been informed. It remains our intention to take Report and Third Reading of the Business and Planning Bill next Monday, as originally agreed through the usual channels and notified to the House on 1 July. This Motion will allow us to do that. I beg to move.

Business of the House

Debate between Baroness Evans of Bowes Park and Lord Ashton of Hyde
Thursday 9th January 2020

(2 years, 4 months ago)

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Baroness Evans of Bowes Park Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde
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That, in the event of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill having been brought from the House of Commons:

(1) Standing Order 40(1) (Arrangement of the Order Paper) be dispensed with on Wednesday 15 January and Tuesday 21 January to enable proceedings on that Bill to be taken before oral questions on those days;

(2) Standing Order 40(4) (so far as it relates to Thursdays) and (5) (Arrangement of the Order Paper) be dispensed with on Thursday 16 January to allow proceedings on that Bill to have precedence over other motions and orders that day; and

(3) Standing Order 46 (No two stages of a Bill to be taken on one day) and Standing Order 48 (Amendments on Third Reading) be dispensed with on Tuesday 21 January to allow the Report stage and Third Reading of that Bill to be taken on that day and to allow manuscript amendments to be tabled and moved on Third Reading.

Lord Ashton of Hyde Portrait Lord Ashton of Hyde (Con)
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My Lords, on behalf of my noble friend the Leader of the House, I beg to move the Motion standing in her name on the Order Paper. In doing so, I will make a brief business statement about the consideration of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill. I stress that the arrangements for the Bill were advertised before Christmas and discussed and agreed through the usual channels.

The Bill will receive its First Reading later today. Thanks to the arrangements put in place by the Legislation Office, noble Lords will be able to table amendments for the Committee stage from 10 am tomorrow. The Bill will have its Second Reading on Monday 13 January. A speakers’ list is still open, and noble Lords can sign up in the usual way until 4 pm tomorrow. The Bill will then be in Committee on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The House will sit at 11 am on Wednesday 15 January to provide some additional time. Oral Questions will take place at the usual time of 3 pm. Proceedings on the Bill will then continue the following week, with the Report stage on Monday 20 and Tuesday 21 January and Third Reading also taken on the 21st. The House will meet early, at 11 am, on Tuesday 21 January—again, to provide some additional time. The full arrangements for the tabling of amendments have been published via this week’s Forthcoming Business.