Baroness Hayman of Ullock Portrait

Baroness Hayman of Ullock

Labour - Life peer

Opposition Whip (Lords)

(since October 2020)

Shadow Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)

(since October 2020)

Shadow Spokesperson (Levelling Up, Housing, Communities and Local Government)

(since December 2021)
Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
9th Feb 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) (Flooding and Coastal Communities)
10th Oct 2016 - 9th Feb 2017
Opposition Whip (Commons)
18th Sep 2015 - 10th Oct 2016
Justice Committee
6th Jul 2015 - 26th Oct 2015


Scheduled Event
Tuesday 12th July 2022
Orders and regulations - Main Chamber
Building etc. (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2022 - motion to regret
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Department Event
Thursday 14th July 2022
Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities
Orders and regulations - Grand Committee
Draft Business and Planning Act 2020 (Pavement Licences) (Coronavirus) (Amendment) Regulations 2022
View calendar
Note: This event involves a Department with which this person is linked, and does not guarantee their actual attendance.
Division Votes
Tuesday 5th July 2022
Sitting Times
voted No - in line with the party majority
One of 44 Labour No votes vs 22 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 158 Noes - 124
Speeches
Wednesday 6th July 2022
Procurement Bill [HL]
My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Wallace of Saltaire, for tabling these amendments in the first place, and …
Written Answers
Wednesday 29th June 2022
Tenancy Agreements: Pets
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the uptake of the revised Model Tenancy Agreement to …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available
EDM signed
Monday 4th March 2019
Medicines
That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, praying that the Human Medicines (Amendment) Regulations 2019 (S.I., 2019, No. …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Baroness Hayman of Ullock has voted in 260 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Baroness Hayman of Ullock 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
Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Conservative)
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
(40 debate interactions)
Lord Benyon (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
(34 debate interactions)
Lord Greenhalgh (Conservative)
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
(30 debate interactions)
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View all Baroness Hayman of Ullock's debates

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Baroness Hayman of Ullock, 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.


Baroness Hayman of Ullock has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Baroness Hayman of Ullock has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

Baroness Hayman of Ullock has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Baroness Hayman of Ullock has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


64 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
5 Other Department Questions
15th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking, if any, to support individuals who rent and have a pet (1) dog, or (2) cat, find suitable accommodation.

Everyone has the right to make the house they rent a home and responsible pet owners should not be discriminated against. This is why the Government have outlined legislative plans in our recently published White Paper, 'A Fairer Private Rented Sector', to ensure that private landlords do not unreasonably withhold consent when tenants request to have a pet in their home. We will also give tenants a right to challenge unreasonable decisions.

Alongside this, we will make it easier for landlords to accept pets by amending the Tenant Fees Act 2019 to include pet insurance as a permitted payment. This means landlords will be able to require pet insurance, so that any damage to their property is covered.

Currently landlords can use the Model Tenancy Agreement (MTA), the government's recommended contract for assured shorthold tenancies in the private rented sector, which aims to make it easier for tenants with pets to find private landlords who will accept them.

Lord Greenhalgh
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
15th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the uptake of the revised Model Tenancy Agreement to support more pet-friendly accommodation.

The Government has not made any specific assessment of the uptake of the revised Model Tenancy Agreement (MTA) in relation to supporting more pet-friendly accommodation. The most recent report from the English Private Landlord Survey (EPLS 2021) showed that 52% of landlords who responded said they used the MTA for assured shorthold tenancies. The same report also showed that less than half (45%) of private landlords are unwilling to let to tenants with pets.

The revision of the MTA aimed to make it easier for tenants with pets to find private landlords who will accept them. While the use of the MTA and adherence to its contents is optional, we set out in our White Paper, ‘A Fairer Private Rented Sector’, that we will go further by legislating to ensure that private landlords do not unreasonably withhold consent when tenants request to have a pet in their home. Tenants will be able to challenge unreasonable decisions. Alongside this, we will make it easier for landlords to accept pets by amending the Tenant Fees Act 2019 to include pet insurance as a permitted payment. This means landlords will be able to require pet insurance, so that any damage to their property is covered.

Lord Greenhalgh
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
23rd Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities is taking to address the High Court judgment of 3 May 2019 which found the arrangements for (1) blind, and (2) partially sighted, voters were unlawful.

The changes in the Elections Bill aim to strengthen the support for all voters with disabilities in the polling station, including those that are blind or partially sighted, and to improve the way that this support is delivered. Rather than a blanket provision, we want voters with any form of disability to get the support that is right for them and for Returning Officers to tailor their approach to suit the needs of disabled electors in their area - including blind and partially sighted voters.

We are working with the Electoral Commission to support guidance being produced to assist Returning Officers in carrying out their new duty. Whilst greater emphasis will be placed on meeting local disabled electors’ needs, including those who are blind and partially sighted, in a way which is tailored and targeted to their individual needs, the guidance will set clear baseline expectations and standards to support equal access to equipment and resources.

The 2019 Judicial Review showed that the existing legislation is no longer fit for purpose and the changes in the Elections Bill will address this.

Lord Greenhalgh
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
23rd Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they will ensure that (1) blind, and (2) partially sighted, voters have equal access to voting aids under the Elections Bill.

The changes in the Elections Bill aim to strengthen the support for all voters with disabilities in the polling station, including those that are blind or partially sighted, and to improve the way that this support is delivered. Rather than a blanket provision, we want voters with any form of disability to get the support that is right for them and for Returning Officers to tailor their approach to suit the needs of disabled electors in their area - including blind and partially sighted voters.

We are working with the Electoral Commission to support guidance being produced to assist Returning Officers in carrying out their new duty. Whilst greater emphasis will be placed on meeting local disabled electors’ needs, including those who are blind and partially sighted, in a way which is tailored and targeted to their individual needs, the guidance will set clear baseline expectations and standards to support equal access to equipment and resources.

The 2019 Judicial Review showed that the existing legislation is no longer fit for purpose and the changes in the Elections Bill will address this.

Lord Greenhalgh
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government (1) whether, and (2) to what degree, they have quantified what proportion of an entire building’s embodied carbon can be attributed to nature-based insulation materials.

Embodied carbon can account for a significant proportion of the total carbon emissions over the lifetime of a building, and reducing the carbon emitted during the construction of homes and buildings is an important part of our net zero transition. This particular aspect has not been quantified, but my Department is actively considering what can be done to reduce embodied carbon in buildings, and as part of that will be exploring a maximum level for new builds in the future.

Lord Greenhalgh
Minister of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
1st Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether breathable nature-based insulation is more appropriate for insulating older homes in the existing housing stock than synthetic products.

The Government has not made an assessment of the circumstances in which nature-based insulation products would deliver better outcomes in older homes. The Government remains committed to ensuring that all insulation products sold on the UK market are safe and perform to the required standard.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of using breathable nature-based insulation on the comfort, health and well-being of occupants.

The Government has not made an assessment of the potential for nature-based insulation products to contribute to the decarbonisation of the built environment, the 2050 Net Zero Carbon target, or the impact on the residents of homes in which these products are use. The Government has also made no assessment of the benefits of showing consumers the potential relationship between individual products and energy savings.

To improve energy and heat efficiency in buildings usually requires a number of interventions, including improving insulation. Therefore, the focus of Government programmes that deliver this, such as the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, is on developing approaches to whole house retrofit, rather than on identifying the contribution individual products can make.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made, if any, of showing potential consumers the relationship between energy savings and operational carbon versus stored biogenic carbon of insulation materials.

The Government has not made an assessment of the potential for nature-based insulation products to contribute to the decarbonisation of the built environment, the 2050 Net Zero Carbon target, or the impact on the residents of homes in which these products are use. The Government has also made no assessment of the benefits of showing consumers the potential relationship between individual products and energy savings.

To improve energy and heat efficiency in buildings usually requires a number of interventions, including improving insulation. Therefore, the focus of Government programmes that deliver this, such as the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, is on developing approaches to whole house retrofit, rather than on identifying the contribution individual products can make.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of proposals for a mechanism to inform consumers (1) how much embodied carbon an insulation product contains, and (2) whether, and if so how much, it stores biogenic carbon, through Environmental Product Declarations at the specifier level.

The Government has not made an assessment of the potential for nature-based insulation products to contribute to the decarbonisation of the built environment, the 2050 Net Zero Carbon target, or the impact on the residents of homes in which these products are use. The Government has also made no assessment of the benefits of showing consumers the potential relationship between individual products and energy savings.

To improve energy and heat efficiency in buildings usually requires a number of interventions, including improving insulation. Therefore, the focus of Government programmes that deliver this, such as the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, is on developing approaches to whole house retrofit, rather than on identifying the contribution individual products can make.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st Feb 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) the potential for carbon storing nature-based insulation products to decarbonise the built environment, and (2) the impact such products could have on reaching the 2050 Net Zero target.

The Government has not made an assessment of the potential for nature-based insulation products to contribute to the decarbonisation of the built environment, the 2050 Net Zero Carbon target, or the impact on the residents of homes in which these products are use. The Government has also made no assessment of the benefits of showing consumers the potential relationship between individual products and energy savings.

To improve energy and heat efficiency in buildings usually requires a number of interventions, including improving insulation. Therefore, the focus of Government programmes that deliver this, such as the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, is on developing approaches to whole house retrofit, rather than on identifying the contribution individual products can make.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
27th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the 2050 Net Zero target, whether they have assessed the amount of (1) energy required for, and (2) the global warming potential of, the manufacture of insulation materials.

The Government has not undertaken as assessment of the amount of energy required for the manufacture of insulation products, or the impact this may have on global warming. The Government remains committed to ensuring that all insulation products sold on the UK market are safe and perform to the required standard.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
27th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the 2050 Net Zero target, whether they have assessed the levels of embodied carbon contained in (1) synthetic, and (2) nature-based, insulation materials.

The Government has not undertaken such an assessment. The Government continues to take forward work to mitigate carbon emissions through measuring and reducing the embodied and operational carbon of the buildings and infrastructure it funds, and within the construction supply chain.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the (1) quantity, and (2) mix, of insulation that will be needed for typical homes to enable the UK to hit its 2050 Net Zero target in respect of the built environment.

The Government has not made a public assessment of the quantity and mix of insulation required to reach Net Zero. There are multiple pathways to achieving Net Zero, all with varying degrees of insulation installed. In pathways where less insulation is installed, more heat demand must be met by low carbon heat. The optimal mix will depend on a number of factors, such as the cost of low carbon heating technologies, and the ability for the electricity grid to meet peak heat demand.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) existing UK manufacturing capacity, and (2) associated supply chains, in relation to the capacity required to insulate the entirety of the UK’s building stock in time to meet the 2050 Net Zero target.

Government recognises the need for a skilled, competent and robust supply chain to deliver the improvements to buildings necessary to meet our net zero targets. We are continuing to work with the industry to support training in key skills shortage areas and new routes of entry to increase capacity.

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) published research in 2021, ‘Building Skills for Net Zero’, that used the Climate Change Committee’s data to define a skills route map for the UK construction industry. This identifies the roles and expertise teams need to meet the requirements for the UK, Wales and Scotland and can be found here: https://www.citb.co.uk/about-citb/construction-industry-research-reports/search-our-construction-industry-research-reports/building-skills-for-net-zero/

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the quantity of insulation material needed to insulate the entirety of the UK’s building stock in time to meet the 2050 Net Zero target.

The English Housing Survey provides estimates[1] of the extent of different insulation measures in the English housing stock. These estimates suggest that 6.3m solid walls remain uninsulated, 5.4m cavity walls remain uninsulated, and 3.2m lofts have less than 100mm of insulation (this figure excludes homes that do not have a loft – for example, homes with a loft conversion). Only 1.9m homes currently have floor insulation.

It should be noted, particularly for higher cost measures like solid wall insulation, that not all these untreated properties need to be improved, as some of these improvements would not be considered cost effective, practical or affordable on an individual property basis. Energy efficiency is a matter for the devolved administrations, who will have equivalent estimates for their countries.

[1]https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/898342/Energy_Chapter_2_Figures_and_Annex_Tables.xlsx, tabs: AT2.10, AT 2.11, and AT2.12

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
27th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government over what period was the £71 million funding invested in research by the National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research; how much of this funding has been spent on administrative costs; and how much of this funding has been spent on projects where refinement of the use of animals in research was the primary focus.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before Prorogation. I will correspond directly with the noble Baroness.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the number of UK holidaymakers who take more than two dogs when travelling abroad.

The Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill proposes reducing the number of pet dogs, cats and ferrets that can travel to Great Britain in one non-commercial movement to five pets per vehicle. This was informed by research and engagement with various stakeholders, including authorised pet checkers, carriers, animal welfare organisations and veterinary bodies, to determine a suitable limit that would disrupt the illegal trade abusing the non-commercial pet travel rules while minimising the impact of genuine owners travelling with their pets. While we have information on the number of pets owned by families, we do not hold detailed data on how many pets people actually choose to take with them when going abroad.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
15th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking, if any, to reduce the number of animals that can be brought into the UK in non-commercial vehicles.

We have introduced the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill into Parliament. This Bill includes a provision to reduce the number of pet dogs, cats and ferrets that can travel in one non-commercial movement from five per person to five per vehicle, or three per person if they are a foot passenger.

The Bill also includes a power to make regulations about the importation of pet animals into Great Britain for the purpose of promoting animal welfare. This will allow us to bring in new restrictions on the commercial import and non-commercial movement of pets on welfare grounds such as: increasing the minimum age that dogs can be moved for non-commercial purposes, or commercially imported, into Great Britain; prohibiting the importation of heavily pregnant dams, and dogs which have been subjected to low welfare practices such as ear cropping or tail docking. Under our proposals volumes would drop further if animals can no longer travel into Great Britain if they are not compliant with these new restrictions.

The Bill was successful in obtaining a carry-over motion on 25 April and was reintroduced in Parliament on 11 May 2022 following the Queens speech. We are preparing for Commons report stage which will take place as soon as parliamentary time allows.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
15th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to commemorate the 200th anniversary in July of the Cruel Treatment of Cattle Act 1822.

The introduction of the 1822 Cruel Treatment of Cattle Act was an important milestone. The UK was the first country in the world to pass legislation to protect animals and two years after this Act was passed, the organisation that would become the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was formed.

In 1875, we were the first country to introduce measures to improve conditions in slaughterhouses. In 1876, we were the first country to pass legislation regulating experiments on animals and passed the landmark Protection of Animals Act in 1911, an Act emulated by many other countries around the world. The Animal Welfare Act 2006 introduced a robust framework and powers for protecting all kept animals in England and Wales.

The UK has a strong track record for raising the bar when it comes to farm animal welfare standards, such as banning the use of battery cages for laying hens, close confinement stalls for pigs and veal crates for calves, and making CCTV mandatory in slaughterhouses in England. More recently we have introduced the Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Act 2021, which increases the maximum sentence for the worst animal cruelty offences from six months to five years in England and Wales, and most recently, the Animals (Penalty Notices) Act and the Animal Welfare (Sentience) Act 2022.

We continue to mark the achievement of this landmark 1822 Act through delivery of our Action Plan for Animal Welfare and by launching in its bi-centenary year the Animal Health and Welfare Pathway to drive even higher standards of health and welfare for farmed animals.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the decision by the Scottish Government to introduce mandatory welfare inspections for farmed fish by APHA Scotland; and what plans they have, if any, to introduce mandatory inspections for farmed fish in England.

The Animal Welfare Act 2006 makes it an offence to cause unnecessary suffering to any protected animal, or to fail to provide for the welfare needs of an animal, including fish, for which that person is responsible. Current regulations (1009/2009) require that farmed fish are spared avoidable pain, distress or suffering during their killing and related operations. Any allegations of welfare or health issues will be investigated by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) and Cefas, and where there are non-compliances with the regulations, appropriate action will be taken.

Visits to fish farms in Scotland are carried out by trained APHA inspectors in liaison with Marine Scotland Fish Inspectors in accordance with the requirements of Scottish Government (SG). APHA has been instructed by the SG to carry out inspections of farmed salmon slaughter facilities and based on these findings SG will then assess the need for future planned inspections. In England and Wales, there is no routine animal welfare inspection programme at farmed fish processing premises. However, as part of our Action Plan for Animal Welfare, we are carefully considering issues raised in the review of the Welfare of Animals at the Time of Killing (England) Regulations 2015, including detailed protections for the welfare of farmed fish. We are also asking the Animal Welfare Committee to update its 2014 Opinion on the welfare of farmed fish at the time of killing.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
8th Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of report by Panorama into animal abuse and neglect on dairy farms; and what steps they are taking, if any, to ensure stronger enforcement of animal welfare legislation.

All farm animals are protected by comprehensive and robust animal health and welfare legislation: The Animal Welfare Act 2006 makes it an offence either to cause any captive animal unnecessary suffering or to fail to provide for the welfare needs of the animal; and The Welfare of Farmed Animals (England) Regulations 2007 set down detailed requirements on how farmed livestock, including dairy cattle, must be kept.

Potential breaches of animal health and welfare legislation are taken very seriously indeed. Defra’s Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) inspectors and local authorities conduct inspections on-farm to ensure compliance with the law and with the relevant statutory farm animal welfare code. Appropriate action is taken against anyone who breaks the law when non-compliances are disclosed. This may include a follow-up, unannounced, inspection by APHA at a later date to confirm compliance. The local authority, as the appropriate enforcement agency, may initiate prosecution action for animal welfare offences where there is sufficient evidence.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
26th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park on 12 April (HL14638), when they intend to publish the Review of the Evidence for Sentience in Decapod Crustaceans and Cephalopod Molluscs; and whether the date of publication will allow its findings to be incorporated into the Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill [HL].

There is clear evidence that animals with a backbone (vertebrates) are sentient and this is reflected in the Government’s Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill introduced to the House of Lords on 13 May 2021. However, the Bill also gives the Secretary of State a power to extend the recognition of sentience to particular invertebrates in future on the basis of evidence.

Defra has commissioned an independent review of the available scientific evidence on sentience in decapod crustaceans such as crabs and lobsters, as well as sentience in the class, Cephalopoda, which includes octopus, cuttlefish and squid. The review will report shortly. We look forward to receiving its conclusions, which we will respond to as part of our ongoing work to protect the welfare needs of animals.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government (1) what progress they have made strengthening legal protections for farmed aquatic animals at the time of slaughter, and (2) what plans they have to introduce (a) specific protections in Welfare of Animals at the Time of Killing regulations, or (b) any other legislation in this area.

Regulation 1099/2009 on the protection of animals at the time of killing requires that farmed fish are spared avoidable pain, distress or suffering during their killing and related operations. Now we have left the EU we have the opportunity to consider whether detailed regulation is needed.

We have recently concluded a review of the welfare of animals at the time of killing legislation and this identified potential improvements that might be made, including on the welfare of farmed fish at slaughter. We are carefully considering issues raised in the review.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
21st Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to set a timetable for establishing a regulatory mechanism for imposing extended producer responsibility on the tobacco industry.

New research conducted by Eunomia for Defra and the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) indicates that cleaning up littered cigarette butts currently costs litter authorities in the UK around £40 million per year, rising to £46 million when including those disposed of in public bins.

We have recently announced our intention to explore regulatory options to ensure that the tobacco industry takes sufficient financial responsibility for the toxic litter created by its products. Supported by the Department of Health and Social Care, Defra is now actively exploring the suitability of regulatory options to reduce tobacco litter and we plan to conduct further research this year.

This research will help inform next steps and we therefore cannot yet confirm a timescale. The Government will continue to work closely with stakeholders to address the issue. Government policy in this area must be developed in accordance with the World Health Organisation Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) and its guidelines.

The Environment Bill will allow us to legislate for extended producer responsibility schemes, which could include requiring cigarette producers to pay the full disposal costs of products or materials that they place on the market, including littered cigarette butts.

Cigarette and tobacco product packaging will already be covered by the reforms to the packaging producer responsibility scheme, which are currently open for consultation.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
21st Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to establish regulatory mechanisms for imposing extended producer responsibility on the tobacco industry; and how any such plans will ensure the industry takes financial responsibility for the costs associated with discarded cigarette butts.

New research conducted by Eunomia for Defra and the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) indicates that cleaning up littered cigarette butts currently costs litter authorities in the UK around £40 million per year, rising to £46 million when including those disposed of in public bins.

We have recently announced our intention to explore regulatory options to ensure that the tobacco industry takes sufficient financial responsibility for the toxic litter created by its products. Supported by the Department of Health and Social Care, Defra is now actively exploring the suitability of regulatory options to reduce tobacco litter and we plan to conduct further research this year.

This research will help inform next steps and we therefore cannot yet confirm a timescale. The Government will continue to work closely with stakeholders to address the issue. Government policy in this area must be developed in accordance with the World Health Organisation Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) and its guidelines.

The Environment Bill will allow us to legislate for extended producer responsibility schemes, which could include requiring cigarette producers to pay the full disposal costs of products or materials that they place on the market, including littered cigarette butts.

Cigarette and tobacco product packaging will already be covered by the reforms to the packaging producer responsibility scheme, which are currently open for consultation.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to recognise animal sentience in law.

This Government has a manifesto commitment to introduce new laws on animal sentience, which we will do as soon as parliamentary time allows.

We can be rightly proud that the UK already has world-class animal welfare standards, but the Government is committed to strengthening these further, including increasing maximum sentences for animal cruelty, banning third party sales of puppies, and introducing one of the world's toughest bans on ivory sales.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they plan to provide for animal sentience in law; and if so, whether the definition of animals in that law (1) will be the same as that for vertebrates in the Animal Welfare Act 2006, and (2) will include decapods and cephalopods.

This Government has a manifesto commitment to introduce new laws on animal sentience, which we will do as soon as parliamentary time allows.

The current science is clear that vertebrates can experience pain and suffering. It is on that basis that the definition of "animal" in the Animal Welfare Act 2006 is limited only to vertebrates. Defra has commissioned an independent external review of the available scientific evidence on sentience in decapods and cephalopods. This review is expected to report shortly.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
23rd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to provide legal protections for aquatic animals.

There is a range of legislation already in place to protect aquatic animals including the Salmon & Freshwater Fisheries Act 1975, Eels Regulations 2009, Conservation of Seals Act 1970, the Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2017 and the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

The Joint Nature Conservation Committee has recently commenced the seventh Quinquennial Review of Schedules 5 and 8 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Later this year, JNCC will make evidence-based recommendations to the Secretary of State as to which species warrant additional legal protections to secure their future conservation. The Government will consider any recommendations to add species to Schedule 5 or 8, at this point, once these recommendations have been submitted.

Further, the Fisheries Act's ecosystems objective contains a requirement to "minimise, and where possible eliminate bycatch of sensitive marine species". We will set out policies that will help to achieve this objective in the Joint Fisheries Statement, which is a UK-wide document.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to investigate any differences reported in the application of Higher Level Stewardship extensions on common land.

We are offering extensions of one year to suitable expiring Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) agreements, as an alternative to entry into the Countryside Stewardship Scheme, ahead of the introduction of new schemes such as Sustainable Farming Incentive, Local Nature Recovery and Landscape Recovery.

The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) published the criteria used to offer HLS extensions which can be found on the GOV.UK website.

We understand that some may not agree with the decision so we have included an opportunity to review decisions not to offer an extension formally. We know that the position on common land is more complex and RPA is working closely with Natural England and commoners to resolve any differences of opinion.

16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what support they intend to provide to Higher Level Stewardship agreement holders to ensure a smooth transition to the Environmental Land Management Scheme.

There are a range of options being provided to help farmers continue to manage their land sustainably and prepare to take part in new schemes as they are introduced.

Defra will be offering certain Higher Level Stewardship (HLS) agreement holders the opportunity to extend their agreements as their existing agreements expire, if they wish to do so and meet the extension criteria. The criteria ensure that the agreements continue to deliver positive environmental outcomes and protect our Priority Habitats and SSSIs.

Additionally, it is now possible for HLS agreement holders to apply for the Countryside Stewardship Capital grants offer alongside their HLS agreement, where they wish to undertake new works. Alternatively, agreement holders can apply for a new five-year Countryside Stewardship agreement if they want to make changes to their land management options.

These opportunities will help to bridge the gap between current agreements and the start of the Sustainable Farming Incentive, Local Nature Recovery and Landscape Recovery schemes, ensuring a continuation of both environmental benefits, and funding for agreement holders.

16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of their decision to delay the requirement for export health certificates for Products of Animal Origin on the ability of the British Veterinary Association’s members to prevent disease incursion to the UK.

There are no biosecurity risks from delay. The agreement reached with the EU means the UK and EU have highly similar animal and plant health measures, now the transition period has ended.

Moving forward, we are committed to maintaining high biosecurity, food safety and animal welfare standards. This includes the introduction of the staged SPS controls.

In advance of the implementation of the new regime of checks, we already have controls in place on high risk goods. This includes Products of Animal Origin that are subject to additional safeguard measures, and the Government remains able to take emergency safeguard action at very short notice to prohibit or restrict the importation of certain products from certain countries following an outbreak of disease or a public health issue, such as avian influenza.

16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what compensation they provide, if any, to commoners when Natural England make a decision that curtails economic activity on a common on the basis that it contains a site of special scientific interest.

Natural England must notify all owners and occupiers where it considers an area to be of special interest (notification of Sites of Special Scientific Interest – SSSIs). This will usually follow informal discussion, including discussion about management. Consensus between regulators, land managers, users and other stakeholders is generally required to deliver positive conservation outcomes for SSSIs. Countryside Stewardship currently provides the principal mechanism to help private land managers meet the cost of any positive management needed to restore SSSIs to, or maintain them in, favourable condition.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they will publish (1) the conclusions of their consultation, and (2) any proposed changes in policy, following the call for evidence on the non-elephant ivory trade.

The summary of responses to the call for evidence on non-elephant ivory trade was published on 10 November 2020. We are currently considering this evidence and plan to consult on potential policy options later in the year.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
16th Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ban (1) sales, and (2) imports, of foie gras.

The Government has made clear that the production of foie gras from ducks or geese raises serious welfare concerns.

Production is banned in the UK as it is incompatible with domestic legislation including the Animal Welfare Act 2006 which makes it a criminal offence not to provide for an animal's welfare needs and to allow an animal to suffer unnecessarily.

Now our future relationship with the European Union has been established the Government is considering the further steps it could take in relation to foie gras.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what specific tests they plan to use to determine whether or not tobacco industry plans for a voluntary approach to preventing littering of cigarette filters will be sufficient; and what plans they have to assess such plans against the potential benefits of a mandatory extended producer responsibility scheme.

We believe that the tobacco industry must take responsibility for the litter created by its products. Our most recent composition survey found cigarette butts represent 66% of all littered items.

Preliminary research has shown an estimated cost to UK local authorities and other duty bodies of £40m per annum for the collection and disposal of littered cigarette butts, rising to £46m when including those disposed of in public bins. This has been drawn from an analysis of local authority spend on litter using local authority revenue outturns, litter composition studies across the UK and local authority surveys and interviews. This research is undergoing quality assurance and will be published in due course.

We have made clear that we will continue to monitor the available evidence on smoking related litter and that if it continues to be a significant environmental concern we will reflect on the steps Government can take to ensure that the tobacco industry takes more responsibility. Measures in the Environment Bill will allow us to legislate for an extended producer responsibility scheme for tobacco products, if such an intervention was considered necessary.

Cigarette and tobacco product packaging will be covered by the upcoming reforms to the packaging producer responsibility scheme.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Mar 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the costs incurred by local authorities in dealing with cigarette butts when littered or disposed of in public bins; what that cost is estimated to be; and what is the basis on which any such cost has been calculated.

We believe that the tobacco industry must take responsibility for the litter created by its products. Our most recent composition survey found cigarette butts represent 66% of all littered items.

Preliminary research has shown an estimated cost to UK local authorities and other duty bodies of £40m per annum for the collection and disposal of littered cigarette butts, rising to £46m when including those disposed of in public bins. This has been drawn from an analysis of local authority spend on litter using local authority revenue outturns, litter composition studies across the UK and local authority surveys and interviews. This research is undergoing quality assurance and will be published in due course.

We have made clear that we will continue to monitor the available evidence on smoking related litter and that if it continues to be a significant environmental concern we will reflect on the steps Government can take to ensure that the tobacco industry takes more responsibility. Measures in the Environment Bill will allow us to legislate for an extended producer responsibility scheme for tobacco products, if such an intervention was considered necessary.

Cigarette and tobacco product packaging will be covered by the upcoming reforms to the packaging producer responsibility scheme.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
11th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of the new responsibilities for local authorities set out in the Environment Bill.

We have committed to fully fund all new burdens on local authorities arising from the Environment Bill in order to make our ambition a reality.

We have worked closely with local authorities to develop the Bill, and are committed to engaging with local authorities as we seek to maximise effective delivery, for example as we consult further on the implementation of measures on extended producer responsibility, deposit return schemes and biodiversity net gain.

Local authorities, as local leaders, experts, place-shapers and conveners of local communities, will play a fundamental role in delivering the environmental action needed in their areas. They will be supported in delivering this change through increased powers to take effective action, reduced financial burdens from waste management and stronger abilities to improve nature, health and social outcomes for local citizens.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
11th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether producers will be required to pay local authorities the full net cost of the waste management at end of life of the products and materials specified in the waste and resource efficiency proposals set out in the Environment Bill.

In the 2018 Resources and Waste Strategy we set out our ambitions of doubling resource productivity and eliminating avoidable waste by 2050. To help us achieve these and other ambitions, we are taking powers in the Environment Bill to enable us through regulations, to require those who place specified products or materials on the UK market to meet, or contribute to, the cost of managing these products at end of life. These powers are in addition to the resource efficiency powers in the Environment Bill.

We are starting with reforming the packaging producer responsibility regulations and will introduce extended producer responsibility for packaging. This will see packaging producers paying for the waste management costs associated with the packaging that they place on the market. This includes those costs currently borne by local authorities for managing packaging waste disposed of by households

We consulted on our initial proposals in 2019 and will be publishing a second consultation this year.

Additionally, we have committed to review and consult on measures such as extended producer responsibility and product standards for five new waste streams, by the end of 2025. These are: textiles, bulky household items (such as mattresses and furniture), construction materials, tyres, and fishing gear. Where extended producer responsibility is identified as the preferred policy approach then businesses placing products on the market can expect to be required to meet or contribute to waste management costs including costs incurred by local authorities.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that local councils scan cats collected as a result of road traffic accidents for microchips.

It is established good practice for local authorities to scan any cat or dog found on the streets so that the owner can be informed. Cats Protection report that 80% of councils in England routinely scan cats involved in accidents.

Additionally, Highways England has clear guidelines for contractors to follow when they find a deceased cat or dog. This process is designed with owners in mind, giving them the best chance of being informed of the incident to allow closure. The process is laid out in the Network Management Manual and in 2015 the necessary arrangements were made in all Highways England’s contracts to collect and identify cats and dogs killed on the strategic road network and to contact their owners.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to inform cat owners of (1) the need to be aware of (a) non-compliant, and (b) non-DEFRA-approved, microchip databases, and (2) the implications of registering their details on such a database.

Under the Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015, the Defra Secretary of State has powers to ensure database operators meet the requirements under the regulations. The Secretary of State may also authorise in writing "an authorised person", such as a local authority or police constable, to act for the purpose of enforcing these regulations. Defra can therefore work with authorised persons and enforcement agencies, such as Trading Standards, to deal with non-compliant databases.

The Government is committed to improving the welfare of cats and is committed to introducing the compulsory microchipping of cats. Cat owners can ensure that they register with a compliant database by using any of the microchipping databases listed on GOV.UK.

Defra is also conducting a Post Implementation Review of The Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015 which will consider the operation of the microchip databases.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that (1) non-compliant, and (2) non-DEFRA-approved, animal microchip databases are shut down.

Under the Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015, the Defra Secretary of State has powers to ensure database operators meet the requirements under the regulations. The Secretary of State may also authorise in writing "an authorised person", such as a local authority or police constable, to act for the purpose of enforcing these regulations. Defra can therefore work with authorised persons and enforcement agencies, such as Trading Standards, to deal with non-compliant databases.

The Government is committed to improving the welfare of cats and is committed to introducing the compulsory microchipping of cats. Cat owners can ensure that they register with a compliant database by using any of the microchipping databases listed on GOV.UK.

Defra is also conducting a Post Implementation Review of The Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015 which will consider the operation of the microchip databases.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to encourage cat owners (1) to microchip their cats, and (2) to keep registered microchip contact details up to date.

The Government is committed to improving the welfare of cats and has a manifesto commitment to introduce compulsory microchipping of cats. Defra launched a consultation in December 2020 on the compulsory microchipping and scanning of cats, and scanning of dogs in England which ended on 17 February. We are currently analysing the responses to the consultation and we will issue our response to it later this year.

The Government advises owners to follow the statutory welfare code for cats which advises that microchipping a cat gives them the best chance of being identified, and reunited with their owner if injured or lost. The code of practice for the welfare of cats can be found in the attached document.

Cat owners can ensure that they register with a compliant database by using any of the microchipping databases listed on GOV.UK.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
3rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the announcement of delays to the consideration of the Environment Bill, what assessment they have made of the impact on the proposed deadline of 31 October 2022 in that Bill for establishing long-term environmental targets; and what steps they are taking, if any, to ensure that such deadlines are met if the Bill has not been given Royal Assent by 31 October 2022.

The Environment Bill requires that Statutory Instruments setting out the targets must be brought forwards by 31 October 2022 and will come into force once approved by Parliament. Work is continuing to meet this deadline.

We will continue to develop targets through the robust, evidence-led process set out in our policy paper, published in August 2020. This timetable is unaffected by the pause to the Bill. This process seeks independent expert advice, provides a role for stakeholders and the public, as well as scrutiny from Parliament. We are working towards a public consultation that will include proposed targets and an assessment of their impacts in early 2022.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
30th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Boxing Day hunts will be allowed to take place this year; and if so, what enforcement measures will be in place to ensure compliance of such hunts with the law.

Organised outdoor sports and activities can take place in all tiers under the Covid-19 response tier system, and should be organised according to the rules of the tier in which the activity is taking place.

As such, trail hunting and hunting carried out under the exemptions in the Hunting Act 2004 can take place where permitted by the landowner. The enforcement of the Hunting Act is an operational matter for the police.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the latest findings by the Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU) regarding the presence of rodenticide in barn owls; and what plans they have, if any, to prohibit the purchase and use of Second Generation Anticoagulant Rodenticides (SGARs) by non-professional users who are not formally trained in their use.

Second Generation Anticoagulant Rodenticides (SGARs) were developed to address public health and other concerns arising from increasing resistance among rats and mice to the longstanding use of existing rodenticides. The approval for these substances was renewed under EU Biocidal Products Regulations (EU BPR) in 2016, and are now regulated under corresponding regulations, the Great Britain Biocidal Products Regulation (GB BPR). During the product authorisation process, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) conducts rigorous evaluations for safety and efficacy using scientific data, with restrictions placed on authorisations as appropriate.

A stewardship regime is in place in the UK for professional use of SGARs. A cornerstone of the stewardship scheme is the Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU) Code of Best Practice, which sets out guidance on the safe use of rodenticides. It is a legal requirement to comply with this code. The scheme also supports the monitoring of exposure of barn owls and red kites to SGARs (as a sentinel species) led by the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH). Alongside the stewardship scheme, restrictions are placed on non-professional (“amateur”) use of rodenticides to further limit the risks to non-target animals and birds. Rodenticide use by amateur users is restricted to use in and around buildings, with the majority of amateur use restricted to indoor use only.

The stewardship scheme is overseen by a Government Oversight Group (GOG) led by HSE with representatives of other government stakeholders. This year the GOG is conducting a review of the stewardship scheme, including the restrictions placed on amateur use, after five years of operation. HSE is aware of the key findings of the latest report from the CEH, and these will be taken into account as part of the ongoing review, the results of which will be published in due course.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Apr 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to carry out a full risk safety assessment into the use of the rodenticide Brodifacoum; and what consideration they have given to having its approval for outdoor use discontinued.

Second Generation Anticoagulant Rodenticides (SGARs), including brodifacoum, were developed to address public health and other concerns arising from increasing resistance among rats and mice to the longstanding use of existing rodenticides.

During the authorisation process, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) conducts rigorous evaluation for safety and efficacy using scientific data, with restrictions placed on authorisations as appropriate. In order to avoid secondary poisoning risks to non-target species, current product authorisations restrict the use of SGARs in open areas to farmers, gamekeepers and other trained professionals where other integrated pest management approaches fail to control rodent populations. Some SGARs, including brodifacoum, can only be used in sewers and in and around buildings. There has been no change in the authorised areas of use of brodifacoum products since the renewals of their authorisations from 2017.

A stewardship regime is in place in the UK for professional use of SGARs, including brodifacoum. A cornerstone of the stewardship scheme is the Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU) Code of Best Practice, which sets out guidance on the safe use of rodenticides. It is a legal requirement to comply with this code.

The stewardship scheme is overseen by a Government Oversight Group (GOG) led by HSE with representatives of other government stakeholders, who meet annually to assess its impact. This year the GOG is conducting a review of the stewardship scheme after five years of operation and will publish its findings in due course. The review will look at the performance of the scheme in three key areas: the governance of the supply chain, improving workforce competence and the monitoring of compliance. The latter includes considering the monitoring of exposure arrangements and looking in more detail at monitoring data.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
26th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether visitors to care homes will need to be tested for COVID-19 after 21 June 2021.

Testing is crucial to help protect the people who are the most vulnerable to COVID-19 by identifying those who may unknowingly have the virus - enabling those who test positive and their contacts to self-isolate and break the chain of transmission.

To support effective infection prevention and control in care homes, care home visitors should continue to test, using rapid lateral flow tests in line with the current policy and produce a negative COVID test prior to their visit. In accordance with the roadmap, further announcements on policy from 21st June will be made in due course. Infection prevention and control measures, including testing, will continue to be important for protecting care home residents while ensuring we allow as much visiting as possible.

26th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to encourage care homes to grant more Essential Caregiver status requests.

Our guidance for care homes on visiting and admissions, updated on 17 June, makes clear that all care home residents should be able to nominate an ‘essential care giver’ who may visit the home to attend to essential care needs. Care home managers should work with residents to allow them to nominate the care giver and visits from these individuals should always be supported, including during periods of self-isolation, for example, following an overnight stay in hospital.

If a resident or their relative feels that the care home is not following visiting guidance, they should raise the matter with the home. If they are not satisfied that the issue is resolved, the Care Quality Commission can look into any complaints.

26th May 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the changes in their guidance on the number of visitors permissible to care homes on 17 May, what steps they are taking to provide care homes with additional resources to support any increase in the number of visitors to such homes.

Throughout the pandemic, we have provided almost £2 billion in specific funding for adult social care. This consists of the Infection Control Fund, the Rapid Testing Fund and the Workforce Capacity Fund.

The Government will continue to monitor COVID-19 pressures on the sector and will keep future funding under review.

27th Apr 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the UK’s departure from the EU, what assessment have they made of regulatory guidelines for the use of a second animal species in regulatory toxicology studies.

It has not proved possible to respond to this question in the time available before prorogation. Ministers will correspond directly with the Member.

23rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they will announce a timetable for the re-introduction of close contact care home visits in England.

New visiting arrangements will start on 8 March. From then, every care home resident will be able to nominate one named person who can have regular, indoor visits. Those with highest care needs can also nominate an ‘essential family carer’.

We will continue to look carefully at the latest data and set out plans for the next phase of visits for people in residential care.

23rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the current occupancy rates of care homes in England.

The Department receives data on spare capacity on a voluntary basis from care homes. However, this data is not sufficiently accurate to provide a comprehensive assessment of national spare capacity.

11th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to extend the indemnity on visits that has been granted to designated care homes which care for patients recovering from COVID-19 to all care settings; and whether this indemnity will be made permanent.

The Designated Settings Indemnity Support (DSIS) was introduced specifically to enable those care homes assured, or intending to be assured, by the Care Quality Commission as Designated Settings and which are unable to obtain sufficient insurance, to overcome this barrier to accepting infectious COVID-19 positive patients from the National Health Service. It is a targeted, temporary measure to boost capacity in these settings and support wider NHS discharges in response to current pandemic pressures. The support will run until the end of March 2021, with a review point in mid-February. The DSIS is not, therefore, a permanent or sector-wide intervention.

We recognise that the wider adult social care insurance market is changing in response to the pandemic and that some care providers may encounter difficulties as their policies come up for renewal. We are working closely across Government, with care providers and insurance representatives to understand the breadth and severity of these wider issues, including those related to visiting and whether there is any further action the Government should take.

4th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to include family members of care home residents in Category 6 of their COVID-19 vaccination first phase priority groups.

The Government has no current plans to revise the phase one priority groups to include all family members of care home residents. Family members and other care home visitors will continue to be prioritised following the wider Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation advice.

4th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the concerns expressed by the Alzheimer’s Society on 1 February about the impact of delaying the second dose of COVID-19 vaccination on care home residents.

Both the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccines provide a high degree of protection after the first dose. The decision to update the dosing interval is based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) and Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and is designed to save lives. It was made following a thorough review of the data and was in line with the recommendations of the UK’s four Chief Medical Officers. The JCVI advised that we should prioritise giving as many people in at-risk groups their first dose, rather than providing two doses in as short a time as possible.

4th Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to lay before Parliament the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) (Amendment) Regulations 2021 drafted by the Joint Committee on Human Rights.

The Government acknowledges the drafted regulations and responded to the Joint Committee on Human Rights regarding them on 22 February 2021. Although we have considered using these regulations to help allow care home visiting, we have decided to pursue non-legislative routes, which allow us to move more swiftly in changing circumstances and to accommodate all care homes.

We recognise the very significant impact that restricting visiting in care homes and mental health settings has had on residents, their family and loved ones.

We are taking a carefully balanced, step-by-step approach to opening up more visiting opportunities. New visiting arrangements started on 8 March and every care home should enable each resident to nominate one named person who can make regular, indoor visits.

Those residents with the highest care needs can also nominate an “Essential Care Giver” who will be able to visit more often in order to provide essential care. They will have the same testing and personal protective equipment arrangements as care home staff.

Our guidance makes clear that care homes should support this visiting as the default. We are working with the care home sector to encourage and enable care homes to do so.

1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of Methodist Homes' care home visitor policy.

On 1 December, we published updated online only guidance to enable more meaningful indoor visits to take place for care home residents across all tiers. This is enabled by providing testing to visitors, which will be available before Christmas. It is a matter for care providers to make decisions about their visiting policy, based on the national guidance.

The guidance enables care home providers, families and local professionals to work together to find the right balance between the benefits of visiting on wellbeing and quality of life, and the risk of transmission of COVID-19 to vulnerable residents and social care staff.

When developing this policy, we have engaged with a range of stakeholders from across the sector including the Methodist Home Association.

1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what financial support they intend to provide to care homes to enable such homes to offer twice weekly tests to two visitors for each care home resident.

The Department is providing a tailored training and guidance package for care homes in order to support them to establish effective testing regimes. We have made £4.6 billion available to local authorities so they can address pressures on local services caused by the pandemic, including in adult social care.

In addition, the Infection Control Fund, set up in May, has been extended until March 2021, with an extra £546 million for the care sector to take key steps to improve infection prevention and control. As per the grant conditions, this funding may be used for supporting safe visiting in care homes.

1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they estimate that family members and friends of care home residents will be provided with twice weekly testing to enable them to visit; and whether they still plan to implement that policy before 25 December.

We want to bring an end to the pain of separation and help care homes bring families and loved ones together. The launch of visitor testing is a crucial step to making that happen.

Testing is only one way of minimising the risk of visiting a care home. If a visitor has a negative test, is wearing appropriate personal protective equipment and following other infection control measures, then it will be possible for family and friends to visit care homes.

Following a successful trial in 20 care homes, we have started the phased rollout of new rapid tests to all care homes across England to support visiting. The first 385 care homes are now able to begin testing visitors and we aim to roll this out to all care homes by Christmas.

1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to offer COVID-19 vaccinations to family carers of care home residents.

Work has taken place to ensure we have the logistical expertise, transport, and workforce to rollout a vaccine, at the speed at which it can be manufactured. In line with the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), the vaccine will be initially rolled out to priority groups, including care home residents and staff, people over 80 years old, and health and care workers. The vaccine will then be prioritised amongst the rest of the population in order of age and risk, including those who are clinically extremely vulnerable and all individuals aged 16-64 years old with underlying health conditions.

The JCVI appreciates that operational considerations, such as minimising wastage, may require deviation from the prioritisation order as outlined in the statement, where decisions are taken in consultation with national or local public health advice. We will follow the advice of the JCVI on clinical prioritisation, which supports vaccinating those most at risk of death from COVID-19.

1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what progress they have made in ensuring that care homes are granted insurance indemnity under the same terms as provided for the NHS under the Coronavirus Act 2020.

We recognise that the adult social care insurance market is changing in response to the pandemic. We are working closely across Government, with care providers and insurance representatives to understand the breadth and severity of the issues, and whether there is any action the Government should take to support the sector.