Lord Porter of Spalding Portrait

Lord Porter of Spalding

Conservative - Life peer

Became Member: 15th October 2015


Lord Porter of Spalding is not a member of any APPGs
5 Former APPG memberships
Darts, Fire Safety and Rescue, Illicit Trade, Pancreatic Cancer, Race Equality in Education
High Speed Rail (West Midlands - Crewe) Bill Select Committee (Lords)
30th Oct 2019 - 5th Nov 2019


Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Lord Porter of Spalding has voted in 437 divisions, and 5 times against the majority of their Party.

9 Nov 2020 - United Kingdom Internal Market Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Porter of Spalding voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 44 Conservative No votes vs 147 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 165 Noes - 433
26 Oct 2021 - Environment Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Porter of Spalding voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 18 Conservative Aye votes vs 59 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 213 Noes - 60
28 Feb 2022 - Nationality and Borders Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Porter of Spalding voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 10 Conservative Aye votes vs 85 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 112 Noes - 89
16 Mar 2022 - Health and Care Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Porter of Spalding voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 15 Conservative Aye votes vs 19 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 75 Noes - 35
26 Apr 2022 - Nationality and Borders Bill - View Vote Context
Lord Porter of Spalding voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 3 Conservative Aye votes vs 202 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 220 Noes - 219
View All Lord Porter of Spalding 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
Baroness Scott of Bybrook (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
(7 debate interactions)
Lord Sharpe of Epsom (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
(4 debate interactions)
Lord Markham (Conservative)
(3 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Department of Health and Social Care
(3 debate contributions)
Home Office
(3 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
Legislation Debates
Coronavirus Act 2020
(356 words contributed)
View All Legislation Debates
View all Lord Porter of Spalding's debates

Lords initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Lord Porter of Spalding, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.


Lord Porter of Spalding has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Lord Porter of Spalding has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


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
9th Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the adequacy of Trading Standards' powers to regulate the sale of vaping products and tackle illicit vaping tobacco products.

Vapes are regulated through the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016 and the Nicotine Inhaling Products (Age of Sale and Proxy Purchasing) Regulations 2015. The Government continues to work with enforcement agencies to ensure these regulations are enforced in England.

Suspected illegal activity should be reported in the first instance to the Citizens Advice consumer service on 0808 223 1133 (www.citizensadvice.org.uk/).

24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they have taken to ensure that (1) electricity networks have capacity to facilitate the mass rollout of electric vehicles, and (2) the process of connecting electric vehicle charging points to those networks is effective and efficient.

Mechanisms are in place to ensure networks are prepared for the significant new demand for electricity from the transition to electric vehicles (EVs). Ofgem, as the independent regulator, use the price control framework to ensure that the network companies provide the required infrastructure to deliver the capacity to meet both current and future demand on the network.

EVs also offer new opportunities for consumers to be part of a smarter and more flexible energy system. Smart charging can help reduce the need for additional network investment by shifting charging to off-peak periods. In 2019, the Government consulted on mandating that all private charge points sold or installed in the UK must have smart functionality and meet device level requirements. We intend to lay the relevant legislation later this year.

Ensuring a smooth process for connecting EV charging points to the electricity networks is the responsibility of network operators at both the distribution and transmission levels, and they are incentivised to do so through the regulatory framework, also set by Ofgem. Officials from BEIS and the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles regularly meet both network operators and connection customers, such as fleet operators, from across the country to discuss the connection process and ensure that the needs of consumers are placed at the heart of the EV transition.

19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the resources local authorities will need to replace fossil fuel heating in their buildings and housing stock to meet the Government's net zero carbon emission targets.

The Government recognises that Local Authorities have an important part to play in tackling climate change, including in heat and buildings decarbonisation. Meeting our net-zero target will require virtually all heat in buildings to be decarbonised, and heat in industry to be reduced to close to zero carbon emissions. Local Authorities can play a number of important roles in heat and buildings decarbonisation, including decarbonising heat in their own buildings and raising awareness of the support available to increase voluntary uptake of low carbon heat and energy efficiency measures. Local Authorities are able to apply for funding to decarbonise heat in their buildings through the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme.

We also work closely with Local Authorities to support heat pump and heat networks deployment through schemes such as the Local Authority Delivery scheme and Local Energy Hubs, as well as providing funding through the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund to improve the energy performance of social homes. In addition, the Government is providing funding and prioritising support for councils to tackle climate change as part of the annual Sector Support Programme delivered by the Local Government Association in 2021/22.

The upcoming Heat and Buildings Strategy will set out further details on how we plan to work with local authorities to meet our ambition on heat and buildings decarbonisation.

28th Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the potential health benefits of an active lifestyle; what plans they have to invest in sports and leisure infrastructure; and what steps they are taking to ensure that people benefit from the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Regular exercise has been shown to treat, manage and prevent a number of physical and mental health conditions. An assessment of the health benefits along with the recommended levels of physical activity are set out in Physical activity guidelines: UK Chief Medical Officers’ report which were updated in September 2019.

On investment in sports and leisure infrastructure, the Government's Sporting Future strategy highlighted the significant role that facilities play in helping people to get more active. To support this, Government through Sport England, is already investing up to £125m from 2017 to 2021 to improve sports facilities across England.

Last year, the Government also announced significant new funding for grassroots football facilities - an additional £550m, linked to our bid for the UK and Ireland to host the 2030 World Cup.

Improving health and wellbeing is a legacy ambition for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. This will include how we maximise the impact of the new sporting facilities being delivered for the Games, such as the redevelopment of athletics facilities at Alexander Stadium, creation of a brand new aquatics centre in Sandwell and the addition of new cycle lanes across the city.

23rd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the role of local councils in preserving heritage; and what plans they have to meet with the Local Government Association and the National Trust to discuss a strategy for the future of local heritage assets.

Local government bears great responsibility for the care and conservation of the historic environment. Local planning authorities make many of the decisions regarding change to heritage assets, informed by information they curate on historic environment records (HERs). They have powers to address heritage at risk and are often owners of some of the most important heritage assets in their area.

Together with Historic England, our statutory advisors on the historic environment, we keep in close contact with relevant partners on these issues. In particular, the Heritage Council, which includes the National Trust, is chaired by the Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism and regularly attended by Ministers from the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government. This provides the opportunity to ensure that issues such as local stewardship of the historic environment are properly considered. Should this be a theme for a future meeting of the Council the Local Government Association and other relevant stakeholders will be invited to attend.

16th Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with the (1) Local Government Association, and (2) local government, about the role of councils in the upcoming Festival of Britain.

DCMS has asked the Organising Committee for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, under the leadership of its Chief Creative Officer, to develop plans for the Festival. The Organising Committee will lead on any discussions with local government.

24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to periodically review the £700 million education recovery package for children and young people, announced on 24 February, to ensure that those from the most disadvantaged backgrounds are being supported.

Understanding the impact of lost education on attainment and progress is a key research priority for the government, and an independent research and assessment agency has been commissioned to monitor progress over the course of the year and help us target support.

The department knows that the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak has been felt most heavily by disadvantaged children and young people, and so it is vital that we target support towards these pupils.

In February 2021, the department appointed Sir Kevan Collins as Education Recovery Commissioner to advise how to help pupils make up their education over the course of this Parliament. As an immediate step, we have invested a further £700 million to support education recovery measures (bringing total investment in catch up to over £1.7 billion).

The package contains a new one-off £302 million Recovery Premium (which includes £22 million to scale up evidenced approaches) for state primary and secondary schools in the 2021/22 academic year. Building on the pupil premium, the Recovery Premium will help schools to deliver evidence-based approaches for supporting the most disadvantaged pupils.

£200 million will be used to expand our successful tutoring programmes. The National Tutoring Programme was first announced in June 2020 and has increased access to high-quality tuition for the most disadvantaged young people, helping to accelerate their academic progress and tackling the attainment gap between them and their peers. This investment will fund an £83 million expansion of the National Tutoring Programme for 5–16-year-olds in 2021/22, in order to reach hundreds of thousands more pupils next academic year; a £102 million extension of the 16-19 Tuition Fund for a further year to support more students in English, maths and other vocational and academic subjects; and £18 million funding to support language development in the early years, supporting a critical stage of child development.

19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure the new £700 million education recovery package for children and young people will prioritise those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The department is aware that the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak has been felt most heavily by disadvantaged children and young people, and so it is vital that support is targeted here.

In June 2020, the department announced an initial package of support worth £1 billion, including a catch up premium worth a total of £650 million to support schools to make up for lost teaching time. Alongside this universal grant, a National Tutoring Programme worth £350 million will provide additional, targeted tuition support to disadvantaged pupils who have been hardest hit from disruption to their education as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Research shows high quality individual and small group tuition can add up to five months of progress for disadvantaged pupils.

In February 2021, the department appointed Sir Kevan Collins as Education Recovery Commissioner to advise how to help pupils make up for their lost education over the course of this Parliament. The department has provided a further £700 million to support education recovery measures, bringing total investment in catch up to over £1.7 billion. This package includes significant funding aimed at addressing the needs of disadvantaged pupils.

This package includes a one-off £302 million recovery premium for the next academic year that will be allocated to schools based on the pupil premium eligibility. Schools with more disadvantaged pupils will therefore receive larger allocations.

Schools will continue to receive the pupil premium every quarter. Each school’s original pupil premium strategy will not have been delivered since March 2020 and the pupils’ needs will have changed or intensified. The department recommends that, as part of the planning for needs based universal catch up, headteachers should review their pupil premium strategy and amend it to reflect the new situation from September 2020.

The department will provide £200 million in order to expand our successful tutoring programmes. This will fund an £83 million expansion of the National Tutoring Programme for 5 to 16 year olds in the 2021/22 academic year, £102 million funding extension of the 16 to 19 tuition fund for a further year to support more students in English, mathematics and other vocational and academic subjects, and £18 million funding to support language development in the early years, supporting a critical stage of child development.

The department will also make a further £200 million available to secondary schools to help deliver face to face summer schools this year, offering a blend of academic teaching and enrichment activities to support education recovery. Schools will be able to decide whether to run a summer school and how to make places available. We recommend an initial focus on incoming year 7 pupils, but schools will have the flexibility to target provision towards the pupils they feel will most benefit.

30th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Berridge on 7 December (HL10633), what assessment they have made of the impact of school exclusion on those children who are prevented from attending school due to COVID-19 infection in their support bubble.

We have commissioned an independent research and assessment agency to provide a baseline assessment of catch-up needs for pupils in schools in England and monitor progress over the course of the year to help us target support across the system, which is currently ongoing.

A new national lockdown came into effect on 6 January and schools should only allow vulnerable children and the children of critical workers to attend face-to-face education. All other pupils will learn remotely. Our get help with remote education portal provides information, guidance and support on educating pupils and students during the COVID-19 outbreak. The portal is accessible here: https://get-help-with-remote-education.education.gov.uk/.

We know that receiving face-to-face education is best for children’s mental health and for their educational achievement and we will review the restrictions on schools to ensure that children and young people return to face-to-face education as soon as the pressures are easing on the NHS. Limiting attendance at this time is about reducing the number of contacts that people have with other households given the rapidly rising numbers of cases across the country and the intense pressure on the NHS.

For those pupils and staff still attending school, the system of protective measures that we have asked schools to implement continues to mean that any risks are well managed and controlled.

23rd Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Berridge on 26 October (HL9059), what plans they have to close schools and move to online learning before the Christmas holidays to enable (1) children to be isolated in their family groups, and (2) extended family gatherings in a COVID-19 secure manner.

It continues to be the Department’s aim that all pupils, in all year groups, remain in school full time. Returning to school full time has been vital for children’s education and for their wellbeing. Time out of school is detrimental for children’s cognitive and academic development, particularly for disadvantaged children. This impact can affect both current levels of learning and children’s future ability to learn.

As set out in the Government’s COVID-19 Winter Plan, nurseries, schools and colleges should not change their Christmas holidays or close early this term. Parents should continue to send their children to school during term time. A time limited change to social restrictions over Christmas does not require any children to be taken out of school prematurely. The leaders and staff of schools have been doing an extraordinary job to remain open, keep settings safe and provide education.

Schools have implemented a range of protective measures to minimise risk of transmission. The risk to children themselves of becoming severely ill from COVID-19 is low and there are negative health impacts of being out of school. Senior clinicians, including the Chief Medical Officers of all 4 nations, still advise that school is the very best place for children to be, and so they should continue to go to school.

Closing schools early would also cause additional disruption and inconvenience to many parents, including key workers such as NHS staff, due to the additional child care arrangements required as a result of this action.

If parents have concerns about their child attending school because they consider they or members of their household may have particular risk factors, they should discuss these with their school.

12th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the restricted access to teaching and part-time employment opportunities experienced by university students in areas affected by additional COVID-19 restrictions,what plans they have to limit the charges those universities operating within such areas can make on their students.

This is a difficult time for students, as it is for people in society more widely, but we are working with the higher education (HE) sector to make sure that all reasonable efforts are being made to enable students to continue their studies.

Universities and other HE providers are autonomous and responsible for setting their own fees. In deciding what level of fee to charge in the current circumstances, HE institutions will of course want to ensure that they can continue to deliver courses which are fit for purpose and help students pursue their qualifications.

The government expects universities and other HE providers to continue delivering a high-quality academic experience. If students have concerns about their experience, they should first raise their concerns with their university. If their concerns remain unresolved, students at institutions in England or Wales can ask the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education to consider their complaint.

My hon. Friend, the Minister of State for Universities, wrote to HE institutions ?on 26 March to ask that they pay particular attention to the additional challenges being faced by staff and students who have been reliant on income from campus-based jobs at this time.

We have worked with the Office for Students, the HE regulator in England, to clarify that universities and other HE institutions can draw upon existing funding from the student premium to increase their hardship funds for students. Students can access this support if they are experiencing particular financial difficulties as a result of COVID-19.

Our system of HE tiers, as set out in guidance, intends to help universities identify the appropriate restrictions to impose on their educational provision in response to an outbreak in their area. This is particularly important when there is a change to the local COVID alert level. This guidance is available via the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/higher-education-reopening-buildings-and-campuses/higher-education-reopening-buildings-and-campuses.

HE providers should continue work with their local public health teams to control or manage any outbreak. When a university is considering moving between the HE tiers, they should engage their local director of public health and inform the Department for Education if the decision is to move to tier 3 or above.

9th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure the successful operation of the 2021 BTEC, GCSE, and A-Level examinations and the subsequent publication of results.

We are clear in our intention for exams and assessments to proceed next year. The department will continue to work with school and college stakeholders, Ofqual and the awarding organisations, to ensure that BTEC, GCSE, AS and A level exams and assessments in 2021 are fair and proceed smoothly.

Ofqual has already consulted on a range of possible adaptations to GCSE, AS and A level exams and assessments next year on a subject-by-subject basis, and has announced some changes that will reduce pressure on teaching time, and help ensure those young people taking exams next year have the same opportunities to progress as the students before them. Ofqual has also consulted and engaged with awarding organisations to agree revisions to its Extraordinary Regulatory Framework for vocational and technical qualifications (which include BTECs) and its associated guidance on how awarding organisations can adapt assessments in 2020/21. We will continue to discuss these issues with school and college stakeholders, Ofqual and the awarding organisations, to ensure that exams and assessments in 2021 are fair.

12th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the electrification of vehicles on (1) lowering the cost of motoring, and consequentially, (2) the mode shift to public transport and active travel.

While electric vehicles (EVs) currently cost more to purchase than their petrol and diesel alternatives, EV motorists benefit from their comparatively cheaper running costs. It costs from 1p/mile to run a new electric vehicle, compared to around 10p per mile for new diesel/petrol vehicles. Additionally, we have put in place a tax regime that benefits motorists who choose cleaner vehicles. We expect the upfront cost and total cost of ownership of EVs to come down and demand to grow even further as they become more commonplace.

Our ambitions for zero emission driving will be supported by an accompanying package of £2.8 billion, with up to £1 billion to support the electrification of UK vehicles and their supply chains, £1.3 billion to accelerate the roll out of charging infrastructure and £582 million for plug in vehicle grants. Accelerating modal shift to public and active transport is one of the strategic priorities for our forthcoming Transport Decarbonisation Plan and forms a key part of both last year’s cycling and walking plan “Gear Change” and the recent National Bus Strategy.

19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to provide (1) additional support to councils to electrify their vehicles, and (2) councils with advice on how they can achieve electrification of their vehicles.

Local authorities and other public sector bodies are increasingly supporting the transition to zero emission vehicles, including electrifying their own fleets. The Government funds the Energy Saving Trust (EST) to run the Local Government Support Programme, which provides impartial advice to local authorities in England on fleet electrification, and wider local policies to support zero emission vehicle uptake. EST also provides a fleet management toolkit to any public or private organisation, which offers in-depth, impartial fleet support to help them reduce costs and limit the environmental impact of their fleet.

Government’s ULEV Readiness Programme was launched in January 2015 and as well as funding charging infrastructure, supported 296 ultra-low emission vehicles across the public sector, including 90 in local authorities. It also offered fleet reviews to 35 Public Sector Bodies (including Local Authorities, NHS Trusts and Fire and Rescue Services). We will continue to work with and encourage local authorities to electrify their fleets and to apply for available funding for chargepoints in their local areas.

19th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the role of local councils in delivering electric vehicle charging infrastructure to meet the Government’s 2030 target to end the sale of new diesel and petrol cars in the UK.

Local councils have an important role to play in the transition to zero emission driving and we are working with them to phase out the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030. The Government’s On-Street Residential Chargepoint Scheme (ORCS) is available to all UK local authorities to provide charging infrastructure for those without private parking. More than 105 local authorities have already taken advantage of the scheme, funding more than 3,800 chargepoints. We encourage local authorities to apply for funding to provide chargers for their residents.

We provided £40 million of funding via our Go Ultra Low city scheme to 8 cities across the UK, to support uptake of ultra low emission vehicles in those cities. Over 3,500 chargepoints were installed as part of this scheme. Bristol, London, Milton Keynes and Nottingham have been delivering ambitious plans to become global exemplars of ultra low emission vehicle uptake.  The scheme also provided £5 million of development funding for specific initiatives in Dundee, Oxford, York and the North East region. The Government has committed £90 million at Spending Review to fund local electric vehicle charging infrastructure, in particular to support the roll out of larger, on-street charging schemes and rapid hubs in England.

Later this year, the Government will publish an electric vehicle Infrastructure Strategy, which will explore the roles and responsibilities for central government and wider stakeholders involved in the deployment of charging infrastructure. As part of this, we will be engaging with local authorities, charge point operators and other stakeholders to ensure that future charging infrastructure is practical, accessible and deliverable.

2nd Jul 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether employment programmes could be targeted to support the economic recovery of local authority areas from COVID-19.

The economic recovery package will have a number of components, at both national and local levels. Although contracted provision is often delivered more effectively at national level, we recognise the key role local areas will have in supplementing that provision with the best possible support offer, tailored more specifically to local needs.

The Department offers significant support to unemployed people across Great Britain, through our network of Jobcentres. Our Jobcentres are using digital technology to host virtual jobfairs, working with employers to deliver online mentoring circles and facilitating sector based work academies. In addition, Work Coaches are conducting customer support calls with new Universal Credit and New Style Jobseekers Allowance claimants, providing support with finding a job, help with retraining or skills advice, CVs and job applications, and access to the new vacancies.

20th Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government whether, as was announced in the 2021 Spending Review, the public health grants for 2023–24 and 2024–25 will increase in line with inflation.

We will announce the 2023/24 Public Health Grant allocations to local authorities shortly.

20th Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to strengthen regulatory powers in respect of the sale of vaping products to children.

The Government is clear that vaping should only be used to help people quit smoking and vapes should not be used by people under the age of 18 or non-smokers.

We have regulations in place to discourage underage vaping. The law protects children through restricting sales of vapes to people over the age of 18 only, limiting nicotine content, refill bottle and tank sizes, labelling requirements and through advertising restrictions. The Department continues to work with enforcement agencies to ensure these regulations are enforced in England. There are no current plans to strengthen the regulatory powers in respect of the sale of these products to children, but we will keep this under review.

9th Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the adequacy of the level of funding of the public health grant to local authorities.

At the Spending Review 2021, we considered the need for local authority public health funding and confirmed that the public health grant to local authorities would increase over the settlement period. In 2022/23, the Grant increased by 2.81% to £3.417 billion. This is in addition to targeted investment through local Government in start for life support and drug and alcohol treatment services.

We will announce 2023/24 Public Health Grant allocations to local authorities shortly, and in doing so will consider the impact of changes to pay and inflation trends and forecasts since the Spending Review.

9th Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with local authorities regarding the £250 million of funding allocated to speed up hospital discharge.

The Minister of State for Social Care (MS(C)) (Helen Whately MP), and Department officials engage regularly with local authorities (LAs) and their representative organisations. This has included calls hosted by MS(C) and Lee Rowley MP, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State in the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. The Chief Executives and Directors of Adult Social Services of all LAs were invited to these calls to discuss the latest situation on hospital discharge into adult social care; and to share insights on the challenges facing different local authorities and how these challenges are being addressed. This has included discussions of the funding where relevant.

2nd Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what discussions they have had on the level of funding required from the public health grant in order to ensure that local authorities are able to fulfil their statutory public health responsibilities.

The Department meets frequently with local government representatives on a range of public health issues. Most recently, the Minister for Primary Care and Public Health met with the Local Government Association on 17 January and the Association of Directors of Public Health on 24 January to discuss matters relating to public health, including future public health grant allocations.

At the 2021 Spending Review, we considered the need for local authority public health funding and confirmed that the public health grant to local authorities would increase over the settlement period. In 2022/23, the grant increased by 2.81% to £3.417 billion. This is in addition to targeted investment through local government in start for life support and drug and alcohol treatment services.

We will announce 2023/24 public health grant allocations to local authorities shortly, and in doing so will consider the impact of changes to pay and inflation trends and forecasts since the Spending Review.

2nd Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government whether the forthcoming NHS workforce strategy will include specific projections of workforce needs with respect to (1) health visiting, (2) school nursing, (3) sexual health services, and (4) drug and alcohol treatment.

The Government has commissioned NHS England to deliver a high-level National Health Service Long Term Workforce Plan (LTWP).

This plan is currently being developed and we have committed to publishing it this year.

26th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the analysis by the Local Government Association that £13 billion needs to be delivered into social care so that councils can deliver on all their statutory duties so that (1) people of all ages can live an equal life, and (2) the need for hospital treatment is reduced.

Whilst we have not made a specific analysis of the figure referenced by the Local Government Association, we have assessed the level of funding made available to local authorities for this purpose through the Autumn Statement delivered on 17 November 2022. The Government is providing up to £7.5 billion of additional funding over two years to support adult social care and discharge, which represents a higher than real terms increase and will enable local authorities to deliver tangible improvements in adult social care services. These improvements aim to address discharge delays, social care waiting times, low fee rates, and workforce pressures.

26th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government when they will inform local authorities of their provisional public health grant budgets for 2023–24.

We will announce the 2023/24 Public Health Grant allocations to local authorities shortly.

30th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what percentage of COVID-19 patients in hospitals are diagnosed with the virus (1) before being admitted, or on (2) day 1, (3) day 2, (4) day 3, (5) day 4, (6) day 5, (7) day 6, (8) day 7, (9) day 8, (10) day 9, (11) day 10, (12) day 11, (13) day 12, (14) day 13, (15) day 14, (16) day 15, of being admitted.

The data is not collected in the format requested.

Trusts are advised to follow guidance on testing patients on admission and repeat testing at the advised intervals.

1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether councils will be given discretion over the payment of the £500 self-isolation Test and Trace support grant so that councils can pay those claimants who do not submit their claim within two weeks, providing a legitimate reason is given for the delay in the application.

Individuals can apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment up to 28 days after their first day of self-isolation. This cut-off period is the same across all local authorities. In the event a local authority believes there is a legitimate reason an applicant has not been able to apply within the 28-day application period – for example, because they were ill in hospital and could not reasonably have been expected to make an application – they should use their discretion on a case-by-case basis in deciding whether to accept an application.

23rd Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what data they collect on the number of (1) homecare workers, and (2) people who receive care in their own homes, who have tested positive for COVID-19.

The information is not available in the format requested.

12th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that women are able to attend breast screening appointments, following reports from Breast Cancer Now that up to 986,000 women in the UK missed their mammograms due to breast screening programmes being paused as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

All National Health Service breast screening providers are operational and working to ensure that all eligible women are invited and attend breast screening appointments. Services have been advised to prioritise women aged 53 who have not yet been screened and women aged 71 or over awaiting a breast screening invitation, together with women assessed as being at very high risk of developing breast cancer.

NHS England and NHS Improvement have also made funding available to trusts to support the adaptation of mobile breast screening units in order to enhance their safe use and so maximise the number of units available to screen women.

5th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that the programme of flu vaccinations is delivered successfully for this autumn and winter.

NHS England and NHS Improvement are working with local areas to ensure that regional teams have plans in place to increase coverage of the flu vaccination programme this winter. New models of delivery have been shared with regional commissioning teams to encourage innovation, such as mobile and mass vaccination models, and allow for increases in uptake safely, whilst observing social distancing and personal protective equipment requirements.

NHS England and NHS Improvement have introduced an enhanced call and recall system, so that those who are eligible are reminded to attend a vaccination session.

Alongside this, additional trained workforce is being made available to local providers to help them vaccinate more eligible people. Public Health England have also launched new marketing campaign to encourage uptake of flu vaccination amongst eligible groups.

Additional flu vaccine has been purchased by the Department, which will be available to providers from November to increase uptake in existing groups and facilitate expansion of the programme.

5th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that the NHS has secure access to Priadel for the treatment of bipolar disorder.

Supplies of Priadel (lithium carbonate) are currently available.

Ensuring patients have access to the medicines they need is vital. The Department brought the supply of Priadel to the attention of the Competition and Markets Authority which has now opened an investigation.

Essential Pharma has now agreed to continue supplying Priadel to the National Health Service whilst we work to agree a fair and appropriate price for this medicine.

We continue to work closely with the supplier and wholesalers to maintain the availability of Priadel and to ensure supply remains available for patients. We are aware that Essential Pharma have quotas in place with wholesalers to reduce the risk of stockpiling but have confirmed that ordering mechanisms are in place to ensure all prescriptions for Priadel can access this treatment.

We have also added lithium carbonate to the parallel export restriction list (8 September 2020) to ensure supplies remain available for the United Kingdom.

9th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to keep public health functions within local government responsibilities; and how they plan to ensure that such functions are sustainably funded.

Local government has a vital role in improving the public’s health, both through securing services and through promoting local policies that act on the wider determinants of health. Future funding for local government public health responsibilities will be considered as part of the 2020 Spending Review.

9th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the governance of the National Institute for Health Protection will include representatives from both national and local government.

We are currently developing the transition process to support full and formal establishment of the National Institute for Health Protection. Future governance arrangements will be determined as part of this process over the coming months.

9th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that cancer survival rates are not adversely impacted by the cancellation or delay in cancer screening, diagnostic testing, and cancer treatments.

Although some appointments for cancer screening, diagnostics and treatments have been rescheduled during the COVID-19 pandemic to protect vulnerable patients, NHS England and NHS Improvement have taken a robust approach to ensuring that people at highest risk are seen as a matter of priority. NHS England and NHS Improvement have minimised the impact on those most at risk of dying of cancer by ensuring that urgent and essential cancer treatments continue throughout the pandemic.

Restoring full operation of all cancer services is a key commitment and is well underway, as set out in NHS England’s letters dated 10 June and 31 July 2020. The number of people waiting in screening pathways is reducing and there is a continued focus on sending out invites for routine screening appointments that were previously delayed.

23rd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to invest additional resources into public health to help public health teams meet any backlog in the demand for services which had to be stopped due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Government has provided £3.2 billion of additional funding for local government to help them respond to COVID-19 pressures across the services they deliver. Local authorities will take spending decisions based on local priorities and the Government is keeping the position under review.

Funding beyond 2020/21 will be set out at the next spending review.

23rd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether their plans to reform care and support will consider adults of all ages and unpaid carers, as well as older people.

Putting social care on a sustainable footing, where everyone is treated with dignity and respect, is one of the biggest challenges we face as a society. The Government will bring forward a plan for social care this year. The Government will seek to build cross-party consensus and will outline next steps shortly.

23rd Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the White Paper on the Mental Health Act 1983 will include measures that prioritise prevention and early intervention, as proposed by the Local Government Association in its Bright Futures campaign and in its submission to the review of the Mental Health Act 1983.

We will publish our White Paper in the next few months. This will set out the Government’s response to Sir Simon Wessely’s Independent Review of the Mental Health Act.

Our intention is that this White Paper will pave the way for reform to the Mental Health Act 1983, and tackle issues addressed by the Review. We will ensure that people subject to the Act receive better care and have a much greater say in that care.

We will consult publicly on our proposals and we will bring forward a Bill to amend the Act when parliamentary time allows.

16th Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they plan to bring forward their proposals to reform adult social care and support; and whether they intend to work closely with the Local Government Association to take forward those proposals.

Putting social care on a sustainable footing, where everyone is treated with dignity and respect, is one of the biggest challenges we face as a society. The Government will bring forward a plan for social care this year. The Government will seek to build cross-party consensus and will outline next steps shortly. The Department engages with stakeholders on a regular basis, including the Local Government Association, and will work with them and others as we take forward proposals.

2nd Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the average daily savings in pension contributions employers have made on days lost to strike action in the public sector, including strike action in the rail and postal sectors.

For members of public service pension schemes, strike days count as unpaid leave, and employer and member contributions are based on actual pay. Part of the reduction in paybill caused by industrial action in the public sector, as well as rail and postal sectors, will thus be due to reductions in employer pension contributions. The Government has not made a central assessment of this figure, which will depend on a number of factors such as the exact number of staff within a given workforce who are on strike on a given day and the typical amount of pensionable earnings foregone.

26th Jan 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SDIL).

The Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SDIL) has been successful at encouraging the reformulation of soft drinks, with over half of all drinks that would have otherwise been in scope reducing their sugar content.

The Government will continue to monitor the impact of the SDIL in line with public health objectives, such as tackling obesity.

As with all taxes, the Government keeps SDIL under constant review and welcomes representations from stakeholders to inform policy development.

5th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they plan to announce the Comprehensive Spending Review; and what plans they have to put in place a programme of support to mitigate financial pressures on local authorities while that Review is undertaken.

The Chancellor launched the Comprehensive Spending Review in July and it will be published this autumn. To date, the Government has provided a comprehensive package of support for Councils to help them respond to financial pressures resulting from Covid-19. This includes over £3.7bn in additional grant funding to be used across all services. The Government continues to engage with Councils to understand the pressures that they are facing and assess the need for further support.

18th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that future lending terms for the Public Works Loan Board do not restrict councils' access to borrowing, in particular for projects to support economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic in areas such as (1) housing, (2) infrastructure, and (3) regeneration.

Local government invests billions of pounds every year to advance local priorities including economic recovery, housing, infrastructure and regeneration. The Government supports this local investment, in part by offering low cost loans to local authorities through the Public Works Loan Board (PWLB).

Local government borrowing has grown substantially in recent years, led by a minority of local authorities borrowing from the PWLB to buy investment assets primarily for yield. The Government is clear that this is not an appropriate use of PWLB loans.

The Government is therefore consulting on a limited intervention to stop this activity, while preserving the ongoing availability of PWLB loans to support economic recovery and other core local priorities such as housing, infrastructure and regeneration. The Government hopes to receive responses to this consultation from across the sector.

29th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will meet with the family of Collette Gallacher to discuss changing the law to ensure that those convicted of committing violent sexual offences against children before 1997 can be included on the sex offenders register.

The UK has some of the toughest powers in the world to deal with sex offenders and those who pose a risk.

In addition to the notification requirements for registered sex offenders (“sex offenders’ register”), where someone poses a risk of sexual harm, the courts can impose Sexual Harm Prevention Orders on individuals convicted of certain sexual or violent offences (including murder), and Sexual Risk Orders, on any individual who poses a risk of sexual harm, even if they have never been convicted. Both orders can place a range of restrictions on individuals, and breach is a criminal offence punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment.

We are strengthening these orders through the Policing and Crime Bill, including enabling the imposition of positive requirements.

Although I am unable to comment on specific cases, I thank my Noble Friend for raising this case, and I will look into this matter to see what appropriate actions can be taken.

30th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what percentage of fires since 2012 in buildings over (1) 18 metres or six storeys high, and (2) 11 metres or four storeys high, have had (a) non-combustible insulation, (b) combustible cavity insulation, and (c) no cavity insulation.

The Home Office does not collect this information. Data on fires in high-rise and medium-rise purpose-built flats are available in Table 0205 here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/fire-statistics-data-tables#dwelling-fires-attended but we do not collect information on cavity insulation in the property in which the fire took place.

29th Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what consideration they have given to allowing the addition of a separate set of Model Standards to those provided in 1983 under the Caravan Sites Control and Development Act 1960, which would recognise the distinction between caravans and motorcaravans.

Section 5(6) of the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960 gives the Secretary of State powers to from time to time specify model standards with respect to the lay-out and the provision of facilities, services and equipment for caravan sites or particular types of caravan site.

The planning permission for many holiday and touring caravan sites permit motorhomes to be stationed on those sites. The model standards for those sites make provision for motorhomes. We do not consider that additional model standards are necessary.

24th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to work with local government to deliver national strategies for carbon reduction.

The Government is committed to tackling climate change, and local authorities have a vital contribution to make. Their unique insight into local opportunities and priorities, their role as place-shapers, and their convening power enable them to drive carbon emissions reductions and develop climate resilient services across their whole area, with co-benefits for better public health and thriving local economies.

Tackling emissions at a local level will make an important contribution to the decarbonisation of transport, energy and buildings. As such, many parts of Government work closely with local government to deliver national strategies for carbon reduction effectively at the local level.

In 2020 the Government launched the Greenhouse Homes Grant Local Authority Delivery Scheme, the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme and the Public Sector Low Carbon Skills Fund.

The Local Energy programme also supports Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), local authorities and communities in England to play a leading role in decarbonisation and clean growth. The Government's wider plan to work with local government to deliver national strategies for carbon reduction will be set out in our forthcoming net zero strategy.

In Spring 2021 we will be publishing a bold and ambitious Transport Decarbonisation Plan which will set out how to achieve net zero emissions across all modes of transport. Different decarbonisation solutions will be required and will work best in different places across the UK, and we have engaged with local government at all levels in developing this Plan


The Government will continue to work closely with local authorities, now and over the course of the net zero transition.

23rd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to give councils long-term, devolved infrastructure and public transport budgets.

The Government is committed to levelling up the country and giving communities more control over how investment is spent so that they can decide what is best for them. The forthcoming White Paper on devolution will set out the framework for future local growth funding, ensuring budgets are devolved to the right spatial level to unleash the potential of our regions and deliver on levelling up. In 2020/21, the Government is allocating over £1.7 billion for local highways maintenance and improvements to local highways authorities in England, outside London, through the Transport Infrastructure Investment Fund. We will also provide £4.2 billion from 2022-23 for five-year funding settlements for eight Mayoral Combined Authorities, building on the success of the Transforming Cities Fund, as set out in the Budget earlier this year.

18th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the role of council-run recreational facilities such as leisure centres, parks, and green spaces in tackling obesity; and what plans they have to invest in these services to support their continued financial viability.

Exposure to the natural environment and green space is associated with lower levels of obesity and higher levels of physical activity, but there is unequal access across the population, with those living in the most deprived areas less likely to live in the greenest areas. The Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan promotes a sustainable natural environment as a pathway to good health and wellbeing. In the last 2 years Government has also invested £16.3 million on various initiatives to support parks and green spaces, including the Local Authority Parks Improvement Fund; Pocket Parks and Pocket Parks Plus programmes; and the Future Parks Accelerator programme to test and pilot new management and funding models for parks.

Grassroots sports facilities like leisure centres are also important parts of their communities and deliver vital health and wellbeing benefits. Sport England announced a £195 million package of support to help community clubs through this crisis. It recently boosted its Community Emergency Fund by a further £15 million to meet the demand, taking the total up to £210 million. The government are continuing to work closely with the sector to understand the issues they face and discuss how we can support them further.

18th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what consideration they have given to extending the timeframe in which local authorities must spend retained Right to Buy receipts from three years to five years.

We have listened to concerns raised by local authorities about the effects of Covid 19 on their house building programmes and the difficulties of spending Right to Buy receipts to the three year deadlines. On 12 June, we agreed to a temporary extension of the next expenditure deadline of 30 June by six months, and wrote to local authorities to inform them of this change. More broadly, the Government has consulted on ways we can change the Right to Buy receipts system to help councils build more homes. The proposals included extending the period for local authorities to spend their receipts from three to five years, and the Government’s response to this consultation will be published in due course.