Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.
e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.
If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.
If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).
These initiatives were driven by Gagan Mohindra, 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.
The private sector has an absolutely vital role to play in implementing the Glasgow Climate Pact, building on the success it helped achieve at COP26 itself.
In particular, through taking immediate action to deliver on their commitments and supporting initiatives that were launched in Glasgow.
Over 98% of premises in South West Hertfordshire can access superfast speeds (>=30Mbps). This compares with a UK average of 97%, and includes coverage provided by the Connected Counties superfast broadband project as part of the government’s Superfast Broadband Programme, which provided superfast access to over 50,000 premises in Hertfordshire.
The Government is now investing £5 billion through Project Gigabit to support gigabit broadband coverage at the same time as commercial rollout so that rural communities are not left behind. The regional supplier procurement for Hertfordshire, along with Buckinghamshire and the East of Berkshire, is scheduled to commence between May and July 2022, with a contract commencement date of April - June 2023.
67 premises in Hertfordshire have also gained gigabit coverage through the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme (GBVS), which helps communities and businesses in rural areas not in line for commercial rollout or other government-funded projects to get more immediate help with the costs of installing gigabit broadband. A further 147 premises are awaiting connection, giving a combined total value of £440,445.
We are investing £5 billion to ensure gigabit-capable broadband is delivered for residents in those hardest to reach parts of the country.
Alongside this £5 billion, we are also removing barriers to make it quicker, easier and cheaper to deploy new gigabit-capable broadband networks across the country.
For example, we have introduced legislation to make it easier for operators to deploy broadband in blocks of flats and will be legislating to mandate gigabit connectivity in new homes.
The police and local authorities have powers to enforce against vehicles that have been modified, or are driven in a way, to create excessive noise. However, barriers exist to effective enforcement. Following encouraging initial research, the Department is conducting further trials of the latest “noise camera” technology to understand if it can be used to automatically detect excessively noisy vehicles.
As the research develops, the Government will keep under review the way “noise cameras” can be used to tackle noise pollution from vehicles.
As the pandemic is changing travel habits, operators are reassessing their services to ensure they provide rail timetables that meet new passenger travel patterns and carefully balance cost, capacity and performance. New timetables will be flexible enough to deliver the right services where they are needed most, and operators will work with their local markets wherever possible to achieve this.
Our aim is to make all journeys accessible for all passengers. The Department has, extended the Access for All programme until 2024 at a cost of almost £400 million. So far, over 200 stations have benefitted from step-free accessible routes and over 1500 from smaller scale access improvements.
In addition, the Department continues to support initiatives, such as the Passenger Assist app, and is using the rail contracting process to make the network more accessible by introducing new requirements on train and station operators, such as the introduction of an enhanced disability awareness training for all customer-facing staff, and those with management responsibilities.
A new National Rail Accessibility Strategy is currently being developed by the Great British Railways Transition Team which will set out how we and the rail industry can work towards accessibility for all passengers.
Multiple chemical sensitivity is currently not a recognised condition. Anyone presenting to primary or secondary care services with symptoms associated with multiple chemical sensitivity such as nausea, headache, and dizziness will receive appropriate support, treatment and advice according to clinical need.
We have protected jobs by extending the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and Self-Employment Income Support Schemes out to September 2021.For those people who unfortunately lose their jobs, we are helping them to find new jobs by doubling work coaches, and with additional tailored support such as our flagship Kickstart and Restart programmes.
To further support employment and retraining, at Budget we announced an additional £126 million for traineeships in England to enable more than 40,000 places over the next academic year, and we are increasing payments (to £3,000) for employers who hire new apprentices.
There will always be outstanding cases in the Crown Court as these figures include cases that are being prepared to be heard in the courts.
The outstanding caseload in the Crown Court reduced from around 61,000 cases in June 2021 to around 58,993 cases at the end of January 2022.
The Government is committed to supporting the recovery of the courts. We have extended 30 Nightingale courtrooms beyond the end of March 2022 and removed the limit on the number of days the Crown Court can sit in the 2021/22 financial year. To secure enough capacity to sit at the required levels in 2022/23 and beyond we are expanding our plans for judicial recruitment.
To provide additional capacity in the Crown Courts we are extending magistrates’ court sentencing powers from 6 to 12 months’ imprisonment for a single Triable Either Way offence to allow more cases to be heard in the magistrates’ court and help to drive down the backlog of cases over the coming years.
These measures are already working, and as a result we expect to get through 20% more Crown Court cases this financial year than we did pre-Covid. Following an increase in funding as part of the Ministry of Justice’s Spending Review settlement, we aim to reduce the number of outstanding cases in the Crown Court to 53,000 by March 2025.