Karen Bradley Portrait

Karen Bradley

Conservative - Staffordshire Moorlands

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
8th Jan 2018 - 24th Jul 2019
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
3rd Jul 2017 - 8th Jan 2018
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
14th Jul 2016 - 3rd Jul 2017
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
8th Feb 2014 - 14th Jul 2016
Administration Committee
3rd Dec 2012 - 10th Mar 2014
Lord Commissioner (HM Treasury) (Whip)
7th Oct 2013 - 8th Feb 2014
Assistant Whip (HM Treasury)
6th Sep 2012 - 7th Oct 2013
Procedure Committee
31st Oct 2011 - 5th Nov 2012
Work and Pensions Committee
12th Jul 2010 - 29th Oct 2012


Select Committee Meeting
Wednesday 1st December 2021
14:30
Procedure Committee - Oral evidence
Subject: Voting by proxy
1 Dec 2021, 2:30 p.m.
At 2.45pm: Oral evidence
Sir Charles Walker MP
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Scheduled Event
Friday 3rd December 2021
Private Members' Bills - Main Chamber
Company Transparency (Carbon in Supply Chains) Bill: Second Reading
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Select Committee Meeting
Monday 6th December 2021
16:00
Procedure Committee - Oral evidence
Subject: Voting by proxy
6 Dec 2021, 4 p.m.
At 4.15pm: Oral evidence
Rt Hon Harriet Harman QC MP
Sir Bernard Jenkin MP
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Division Votes
Tuesday 23rd November 2021
Health and Care Bill
voted No - in line with the party majority
One of 302 Conservative No votes vs 1 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 240 Noes - 304
Speeches
Monday 22nd November 2021
Channel Crossings in Small Boats

I refer the House to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests. The people responsible for this situation …

Written Answers
Monday 6th September 2021
Higher Education: Antisemitism
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to promote (a) adoption and (b) implementation …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Tuesday 19th October 2021
Company Transparency (Carbon in Supply Chains) Bill 2021-22
A Bill to require companies to prepare an annual statement on carbon in their supply chains; and for connected purposes.
Tweets
None available
MP Financial Interests
Monday 15th November 2021
8. Miscellaneous
From 25 June 2021, Member (unpaid) of the panel for the Community Foundation for Staffordshire’s We Love the Moorlands programme, …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Karen Bradley has voted in 284 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Karen Bradley 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.

View all Karen Bradley's debates

Staffordshire Moorlands Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Petitions with highest Staffordshire Moorlands signature proportion
Petitions with most Staffordshire Moorlands signatures
Petition Debates Contributed

Football is a powerful tool of which allows a range of benefits such as employment, and other important aspects of life. Football can be associated with passion, emotion, excitement and dedication across the community. With Fans attending football games a range of economic benefits are there too.

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

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


Latest EDMs signed by Karen Bradley

Karen Bradley has not signed any Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Karen Bradley, 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.


Karen Bradley has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Karen Bradley has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

13 Bills introduced by Karen Bradley

Introduced: 4th July 2019

Extend the period for forming an Executive under section 1(1) of the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation and Exercise of Functions) Act 2018 and to impose a duty on the Secretary of State to report on progress towards the formation of an Executive in Northern Ireland.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 24th July 2019 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 4th July 2019

Extend the period for forming an Executive under section 1(1) of the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation and Exercise of Functions) Act 2018 and to impose a duty on the Secretary of State to report on progress towards the formation of an Executive in Northern Ireland.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 24th July 2019 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 5th July 2016

A Bill To make provision about electronic communications infrastructure and services; to provide for restricting access to online pornography; to make provision about protection of intellectual property in connection with electronic communications; to make provision about data-sharing; to make provision about functions of OFCOM in relation to the BBC; to provide for determination by the BBC of age-related TV licence fee concessions; to make provision about the regulation of direct marketing; to make other provision about OFCOM and its functions; and for connected purposes.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 27th April 2017 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 21st March 2018

A Bill to make provision about the regional rate in Northern Ireland for the year ending 31 March 2019; and amend the Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 28th March 2018 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 20th March 2018

A Bill to Authorise the issue out of the Consolidated Fund of Northern Ireland of certain sums for the service of the years ending 31 March 2018 and 2019; to appropriate those sums for specified purposes; to authorise the use for the public service of certain resources for those years; to revise the limits on the use of certain accruing resources in the year ending 31 March 2018; and to authorise the Department of Finance in Northern Ireland to borrow on the credit of the sum appropriated for the year ending 31 March 2019.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 28th March 2018 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 28th February 2019

Make provision about the regional rate in Northern Ireland for the year ending 31 March 2020; and amend the Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2012.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Tuesday 26th March 2019 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 28th February 2019

To authorise the issue out of the Consolidated Fund of Northern Ireland of certain sums for the service of the years ending 31 March 2019 and 2020; to appropriate those sums for specified purposes; to authorise the use for the public service of certain resources for those years; to revise the limits on the use of certain accruing resources in the year ending 31 March 2019; and to authorise the Department of Finance in Northern Ireland to borrow on the credit of the sum appropriated for the year ending 31 March 2020.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Friday 15th March 2019 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 27th June 2018

To authorise the issue out of the Consolidated Fund of Northern Ireland of certain sums for the service of the year ending 31 March 2019; to appropriate those sums for specified purposes; to authorise the Department of Finance in Northern Ireland to borrow on the credit of the appropriated sums; to authorise the use for the public service of certain resources (including accruing resources) for the year ending 31 March 2019; and to repeal certain spent provisions.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Friday 20th July 2018 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 18th October 2018

To facilitate the formation of an Executive in Northern Ireland by extending the time for making Ministerial appointments following the election of the Northern Ireland Assembly on 2 March 2017; and to make provision about the exercise of governmental functions in, or in relation to, Northern Ireland in the absence of Northern Ireland Ministers.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 1st November 2018 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 21st March 2018

A Bill to confer power on the Secretary of State to determine salaries and other benefits for Members of the Northern Ireland Assembly in respect of periods when there is no Executive.

This Bill received Royal Assent on Wednesday 28th March 2018 and was enacted into law.

Introduced: 19th May 2016

A Bill to enable the United Kingdom to implement the Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict of 1954 and the Protocols to that Convention of 1954 and 1999

This Bill received Royal Assent on Thursday 23rd February 2017 and was enacted into law.


A Bill to require companies to prepare an annual statement on carbon in their supply chains; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 2nd Reading (Commons)
Friday 16th October 2020
(Read Debate)

A Bill to require companies to prepare an annual statement on carbon in their supply chains; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading (Commons)
Tuesday 19th October 2021
Next Event - 2nd Reading (Commons)
Friday 3rd December 2021
Order Paper number: 8
(Unlikely to be Debated - would require unanimous consent to progress)

Karen Bradley has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


59 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
1 Other Department Questions
10th Sep 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what financial provision he is making available to ensure that there is adequate (a) infrastructure and (b) staffing in place to enable exit checks to be carried out at all UK ports from 1 January 2021.

On 12 July, the Government announced a £705 million funding package for border infrastructure, staffing and IT to ensure GB border systems are fully operational when the UK takes back control of its border after the end of the transition period.

The £705 million will be split between £470 million for port and inland infrastructure and £235 million for new staff and IT systems. Further details will be set out in due course.

Penny Mordaunt
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
17th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether dedicated wedding venues are permitted to hold covid-secure weddings in Stage 2 of the covid-19 roadmap.

At Step 2, which will be no earlier than 12 April, weddings and civil partnership ceremonies are permitted for up to 15 people in COVID-19 Secure venues that are permitted to open or where a broader exemption applies.

Receptions can take place with up to 15 people in the form of a sit-down meal and in any COVID-19 Secure outdoor venue that is permitted to open. Such receptions must not take place in people’s private gardens or public outdoor spaces.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of providing additional financial support for the hospitality sector in areas under tier 3 covid-19 restrictions.

We are providing hospitality sector in Tier 3 with a wide package of support. This includes the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, government-backed loans, Local Restrictions Support Grants and additional funding provided to Local Authorities to support businesses. On 1 December, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister announced an additional £1,000 Christmas grant for ‘wet-led pubs’ in tiers 2 and 3.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
11th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether photography businesses specialising in pets can continue to operate during the November 2020 covid-19 lockdown provided that the business is conducted outdoors, with only the pet owner and the photographer present and ensuring social distancing is observed.

England’s new national restrictions closures guidance from Cabinet Office can be found here. This states ‘photography studios’ must close. However, it also states that businesses that provide services (rather than goods) are not required to close, unless listed in section 2 of the guide.

The Cabinet Office’s guidance states that Government cannot provide comments on individual cases of whether or not a business is permitted to open. It is for each business to assess whether they are a business required to close having considered the guidance and regulations.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
11th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken to ensure that warranties on the products of companies that become insolvent and then reopen are honoured.

Extended warranties form a binding contract between the party offering the extended warranty and the consumer. Under UK law, guarantees and warranties are not required to be given, but are benefits in addition to consumers’ rights under the Consumer Rights Act 2015. Where the business of an insolvent company is sold, the purchasing entity is under no statutory requirement to honour a warranty provided by the insolvent company. Imposing such an obligation could impact on the prospects for the sale of viable parts of a business, reducing the returns to creditors, as well as harming the chances of saving jobs through a successful business sale.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
1st Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he has taken to support community radio stations during the covid-19 outbreak.

We have worked with Ofcom to release emergency funding, through the Community Radio Fund, to help community radio stations continue to provide programming and outreach projects for the communities they serve. A total of 112 awards have been made by Ofcom across two rounds.

We are continuing to liaise with stakeholders across the industry regarding ways in which the Government can support the ongoing sustainability of the community radio sector through Covid-19 and beyond.

15th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether the rule of six applies to holiday cottages; and whether exemptions are available to allow more than six people from different support bubbles to visit self catering holiday cottages.

Since 14 September, people must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than 6. This applies indoors and outdoors, including in private homes and self-catered holiday accommodation.

If people are planning to go on holiday to a holiday home, self catered cottage or any other guest accommodation with more than 6 people who are not in one family group or bubble, they will need to make arrangements to reduce the size to 6.

Nigel Huddleston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
22nd Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to promote (a) adoption and (b) implementation of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance working definition of antisemitism across higher education institutions.

There is no place in our society, including within higher education (HE), for antisemitism. The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition is an important tool in tackling antisemitism. Adopting the widely recognised definition sends a strong signal that HE providers take these issues seriously.

My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, wrote to the sector in October 2020, calling upon leaders to adopt the IHRA definition. He repeated this message in May, reinforcing the government's expectation that providers adopt the IHRA definition, stressing the even greater importance of doing so in light of increased number of antisemitic incidents recorded (as a result of the conflict in the Middle East). We are aware of over 100 HE providers which have now adopted the IHRA definition. This includes over 80 universities.

In his February 2021 strategic guidance letter, the Secretary of State also asked the Office for Students (OfS) to undertake a scoping exercise, to identify providers who are reluctant to adopt the definition. On 29 July 2021, the OfS announced they intend to publish a list of HE providers who have adopted the IHRA working definition of antisemitism in autumn 2021 alongside resources for providers.

The decision on adoption of the definition rests with individual providers, but the government will continue to urge them to adopt the definition and ensure that HE is a genuinely fulfilling and welcoming experience for everyone.

Adoption of the IHRA definition is only a first step, and while the government considers that adoption of the definition is crucial, it is not enough on its own. That is why I will continue to work with the sector to ensure it better understands antisemitism and does more to end it.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Department for Education) (Higher and Further Education)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what additional support he will provide to BTEC students (a) sitting examinations over winter 2020-21 and (b) more generally during the covid-19 outbreak.

Ofqual’s Extended Extraordinary Regulatory Framework (EERF) has been in operation since October for vocational and technical qualifications. This covers all vocational and technical qualifications, including BTECs which are owned by the awarding organisation Pearson. The EERF allows awarding organisations, including Pearson, to adapt qualifications to free up teaching time and respond to public health measures. Given the large numbers of vocational and technical qualifications taken by students and their varying sizes and natures there is not a one-size-fits-all approach that can be applied, and the adaptations will vary by qualification.

Overseen by Ofqual, all awarding organisations have been working with centres over the past few months to make permitted adaptations to qualifications, and students should now be aware of how these adaptations affect their courses, assessments, and exams. For example, some BTEC students will benefit from additional windows in which to complete their assessments to recognise that adhering to social distancing requirements can increase the time needed to complete some assessments.

The Department has also confirmed that all awarding organisations can reduce the number of optional units that are assessed for vocational and technical qualifications included on performance tables. Internal assessments can take up to 30 hours of teaching time, so this means that for students, including BTEC students, the remaining time available can focus on teaching students the knowledge and skills they need to progress.

10th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether schools will receive automatic funding from his Department to cover the cost of personal protective equipment.

We have worked closely with Public Health England (PHE) and stakeholders on our approach and guidance throughout the Department’s COVID-19 response. In particular, we have worked with PHE to issue guidance to all schools and nurseries on a hierarchy of controls which, when implemented, create an inherently safer system where the risk of transmission of infection is substantially reduced. These include measures such as ensuring that anyone with symptoms does not attend their school or nursery, cleaning hands regularly, good respiratory hygiene, regular cleaning of touched surfaces, minimising contact and mixing and, where needed, use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

As our guidance details, the majority of staff in schools, nurseries and children’s social care settings will not require PPE beyond what they would normally need for their work, even if they are not always able to maintain a distance of 2 metres from others. PPE is only needed in a very small number of cases, which are set out clearly in our published guidance.

Schools will continue to receive their core funding allocations through which PPE should be funded.

The full guidance on safe working in schools, nurseries and children’s social care settings, including the use of PPE, can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/safe-working-in-education-childcare-and-childrens-social-care/safe-working-in-education-childcare-and-childrens-social-care-settings-including-the-use-of-personal-protective-equipment-ppe.

13th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to ensure that school children in the three tier education system are supported in their transition years of Year 4 and Year 8 given the Government's plans for Year 6 students in the two tier system to return to school from early June.

From the week commencing 1 June, at the earliest, we will be asking primary schools to welcome back children in nursery, Reception, year 1 and year 6, alongside priority groups. We will only do this provided that the five key tests set by Government justify the changes at the time.

We want to get all children and young people back into education as soon as the scientific advice allows because it is the best place for them to learn, and because we know how important it is for their mental wellbeing to have social interactions with their peers, carers and teachers. The safety of children and staff is our utmost priority.

Guidance for schools and childcare settings to prepare for wider opening from 1 June 2020 can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-educational-and-childcare-settings-to-prepare-for-wider-opening-from-1-june-2020/actions-for-education-and-childcare-settings-to-prepare-for-wider-opening-from-1-june-2020

The three year groups within mainstream primary have been prioritised because they are key transition years. Year 6 children are finishing Key Stage 2 and preparing for the transition to secondary school, in many cases, and the secondary curriculum and will benefit immensely from time with their friends and teachers to ensure they are ready. We expect all mainstream schools to follow the same approach, including middle schools.

8th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has made an assessment of public charging points in Staffordshire Moorlands for electric vehicles; and if he will ensure that there are adequate public charging points for such vehicles in the Staffordshire Moorlands ahead of the phasing out of non-electric vehicles.

Our vision is to have one of the best infrastructure networks in the world for electric vehicles (EVs), and we want chargepoints to be accessible, affordable and secure. The transition to zero emission vehicles is supported by a £2.8 billion package of measures. Of this £1.3 billion is being targeted to accelerate the roll out of charging infrastructure across the UK. Local authorities are able to take advantage of the £20 million On-street Residential Chargepoint Scheme (ORCS), which assists them with the cost of installing chargepoints on residential streets. In addition, in the recent Spending Review Government committed £90 million to fund local EV charging infrastructure, which will support the roll out of larger charging schemes and rapid hubs. Government has recognised that cost is not the only barrier facing local authorities in the provision of public charging points and will publish an electric vehicle infrastructure strategy this year to address the remaining barriers in infrastructure delivery. We are determined to work with industry to ensure that all rural areas like the Staffordshire Moorlands have a joined up and reliable public electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

The Government does not keep a record of public chargepoints as many of these are installed and operated privately. Nationally, Government and industry have supported the installation of over 19,000 publicly available charging devices. This includes over 3,500 rapid devices – one of the largest networks in Europe.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will extend the period of validity of a Theory Driving Test Certificate in response to the covid-19 lockdown restrictions that were imposed on people learning to drive.

The two-year validity period of the theory test certificate is set in legislation and the Government has taken the decision not lay further legislation to extend it. The primary reason is that the two-year validity is in place to ensure that a candidate’s theoretical knowledge remains current. Extending the validity would provide less reassurance that this is the case, particularly over a period when a candidate was also unlikely to be having driving lessons. It is important that road safety knowledge and hazard perception skills are up to date as learners prepare to take their practical test.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
21st Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 4 June 2020 to Question 52118 on Bus Services: Coronavirus, whether he plans to make additional support available to private coach companies over summer 2020 to help them during the covid-19 outbreak.

On 8 August the Government announced a new £40 million funding package for school transport. Local authorities have discretion as to which mode offers the best value for money when procuring vehicles from September, however it is expected some will procure coach support where group sizes are large enough and this is logistically possible.

The Department for Transport has been in regular contact with representatives of the coach industry and we continue to work closely with the coach sector to understand what the ongoing risks and issues are, and how these could be addressed.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
21st Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will (a) extend the temporary exemption for fee paying school children on non-Public Service Vehicle Accessibility Regulations compliant transport and (b) allow for more fare-paying passengers for children travelling to faith schools.

This Government is committed to building an inclusive transport system which allows all passengers to travel on accessible modes of transport. We recognise however that the Covid19 pandemic has hit the coach industry hard and this has had an adverse impact on coach operator’s ability to invest in compliant vehicles.

We have therefore offered a further time-limited exemption for closed door home-to-school services until the end of the 2020/21 academic year. We anticipate that this will enable home to school services to continue to operate, enabling children to get to school, including private and faith schools.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will extend statutory sick pay to members of a household who are required to self-isolate and take unpaid covid-related absence due to another member of that household requiring non-covid related surgery.

Statutory Sick Pay is payable from the first day of absence from work, rather than the fourth to individuals who have been told to self-isolate by their doctor or a clinician before being admitted to hospital for planned or elective surgery. SSP eligibility conditions apply, including the requirement that an individual is sick or incapable of work for at least 4 days in a row (including non-working days).

SSP is just one part of our welfare safety net and our wider government offer to support people in times of need. Those who are not eligible for SSP may be able to claim Universal Credit and new style Employment and Support Allowance, depending on their personal circumstances, to support them when they are unable to work during a period of isolation.

Employers can choose to furlough employees through the CJRS if they are eligible to do so. Employees are able to be furloughed if they are unable to work because they have caring responsibilities resulting from coronavirus.

18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether self-employed musicians can submit music for use on her Department's helplines.

DWP has a procurement framework with a list of suppliers whom we can purchase from. The Department must ensure that any music used is licence-free and adheres to accessibility standards. There are also set parameters regarding audio frequencies to ensure a quality experience for callers, particularly when using a mobile telephone.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
14th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to align the separate national digital proof of covid-19 vaccination status systems of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland so that information on vaccine status can be shared throughout the UK, in particular for people who are registered with a GP in one nation and due to work received the covid-19 vaccination in a different nation.

We are continuing to work closely with the devolved administrations to ensure that a United Kingdom-wide approach is developed where possible. The adoption of a UK-wide COVID Pass letter has been agreed with the devolved administrations, which includes each nation’s health service logo. England and Wales launched the letter in early July, with Northern Ireland and Scotland to follow by late July.

Information for those vaccinated in England but registered with a general practitioner (GP) in Wales or Scotland is already in place. We are working with officials to ensure the cross-border data is in place for those vaccinated in Wales and Scotland but registered with a GP in England by late July. Work is underway to find a solution for cross border vaccinations with Northern Ireland.

Nadhim Zahawi
Secretary of State for Education
19th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of bringing forward the rollout of the covid-19 vaccine to (a) internet and phone engineers and (b) other key workers who need to enter residential premises to carry out their work.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) is the independent body made up of scientists and clinical experts who advise the Government on prioritisation of vaccines at a population level. For phase one, the JCVI has prioritised nine priority groups primarily based on age and clinical risk factors in order to meet the Government’s aim of continuing to reduce morbidity, mortality and to protect the National Health Service and social care system.

For phase two of the COVID 19 vaccination programme, the JCVI published its interim advice on 26 February, setting out that the most effective way to minimise hospitalisations and deaths is to continue to prioritise people by age, rather than by occupation. Age is assessed to be the strongest factor linked to mortality, morbidity and hospitalisations and because the speed of delivery is crucial as we provide more people with protection from COVID-19. If internet and phone engineers and other key workers who need to enter residential premises to carry out their work are captured in phase one due to age or clinical need, then they will be vaccinated accordingly. However, there are currently no plans to specifically vaccinate by occupation.

Nadhim Zahawi
Secretary of State for Education
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will permit hospitality businesses in areas with tier 3 covid-19 restrictions to operate with the same restrictions as those in tier 2 areas.

The Government is keeping the restriction measures under continual review and will only make changes if the data and science supports it.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
9th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if will make an assessment of the potential merits of extending the scope of support bubbles to allow elderly couples to form a support bubble with their family.

The eligibility criteria for support bubbles were extended when the local restriction tiers were re-introduced on 2 December include households with a child under one year old; households with a disabled child under five years old who requires continuous care; or a household with a single adult carer or a child carer looking after someone who requires continuous care. As such, unless a member of an elderly couple is the only adult in their household who does not need continuous care as a result of a disability, they are currently unable to form a support bubble.

We recognise that not everyone who would like to form a support bubble is able to do so. These difficult decisions must be taken because the formation of a support bubble and therefore the ability to have close contact with those you do not live with carries transmission risks. As a result, the eligibility criteria has necessarily been limited to smaller households most in need of support that cannot be facilitated through other means.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of opening swimming pools for treatment of mental and physical health issues during the November 2020 covid-19 lockdown.

The national restrictions are designed to get the ‘R’ rate under control through limiting social contact and reducing transmissions. As part of this package, from 5 November until 2 December indoor and outdoor leisure will need to close.

People are still allowed to leave their homes for exercise and recreation outdoors, on their own, with their household, with their support bubble or with any one person. Our guidance for the public on the mental health and wellbeing aspects of COVID-19 recognises how important exercise can be for a person’s mental health physical health and includes tips on how to stay physically healthy.

Nadine Dorries
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
22nd Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure that UK aid is being used to promote the values of human rights, democracy and press freedom in (a) the West Bank and (b) Gaza.

Every Israeli and Palestinian has the right to live in freedom, prosperity, and security. UK Aid helps promote the values of human rights by providing humanitarian and protection assistance in Gaza, including support to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees. The UK is working with the Palestinian Authority (PA) - and with Palestinian civil society - to make the security sector more accountable to its citizens, ensuring complaints of mistreatment or arbitrary detention are properly investigated. Our Transparency and Accountability programme is working to help the PA become more accountable to its citizens. Our Conflict Security and Stability Fund is supporting women and girls and people with disabilities to advocate for their rights and provided services to support victims of gender based violence. We work only with implementers and partners that have strong safeguards in place, which reduces risk and ensures the maximum impact of UK aid for Palestinians.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
30th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s ability to verify and monitor Iran’s nuclear activities.

On 23 February Iran suspended its application of the Additional Protocol and the transparency measures under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA). The Foreign Secretary, alongside his E3 partners, has made clear that Iran must reverse these restrictions and co-operate fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The UK has also repeatedly stated that Iran must co-operate on all issues related to the IAEA's separate safeguards investigation. We are currently engaged in intensive discussions in Vienna with JCPoA participants and the US, aimed at returning Iran back into full compliance with its JCPoA commitments, and restoring the benefits of the deal for all.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what recent assessment he has made of potential bias against Israel at the UN Human Rights Council.

The UK has stood up for Israel when it faces bias and unreasonable criticism, and has been clear that the existence of a dedicated agenda item ('Item 7') damages the prospect for a two-state solution and does little to advance dialogue, stability or mutual understanding. As such, at the 40th session of the Human Rights Council in March 2019 we moved to voting against all resolutions under Item 7. However, the UN and its member states have every right to address issues of concern in a measured, balanced and proportionate way. We will continue to support scrutiny of Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories in the Human Rights Council, so long as it is justified, proportionate, and not proposed under Item 7.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
4th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, if he will make it his policy that resolutions disproportionately focusing on Israel at the UN are damaging to the prospects for peace; and if he will make a statement.

The UK has stood up for Israel when it faces bias and unreasonable criticism, and has been clear that the existence of a dedicated agenda item ('Item 7') damages the prospect for a two-state solution and does little to advance dialogue, stability or mutual understanding. As such, at the 40th session of the Human Rights Council in March 2019 we moved to voting against all resolutions under Item 7. However, the UN and its member states have every right to address issues of concern in a measured, balanced and proportionate way. We will continue to support scrutiny of Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories in the Human Rights Council, so long as it is justified, proportionate, and not proposed under Item 7.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of extending the VAT reduction for hospitality and tourism to alcohol to help support pubs during the covid-19 outbreak.

The temporary reduced rate of VAT was introduced on 15 July to support the cash flow and viability of over 150,000 businesses and protect 2.4 million jobs in the hospitality and tourism sectors, and will run until 31 March 2021.

While the Government keeps all taxes under review, this relief comes at a significant cost to the Exchequer, and there are currently no plans to extend the scope of the reduced rate. Pubs that sell food will be able to apply the reduced rate to meals and non-alcoholic beverages consumed on the premises. They are also able to sell hot food and non-alcoholic drinks for take away at the reduced rate.

Alcohol duty was frozen at Budget 2020 in order to help pubs and the alcoholic drinks sector.

13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the covid-19 pandemic on UK building societies; and if he will make a statement.

The Government recognises the vital role of credit unions in the financial wellbeing of their communities, providing an ethical home for their members’ savings, and affordable loans to those who may otherwise have to resort to high-cost lenders. The Government also recognises the important role played by building societies in supporting their local communities, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. In April 2020, I wrote to building society and credit union trade bodies to thank frontline staff for their efforts to continue to provide essential services to their members.

HM Treasury has regularly engaged with regulators and representatives from the building society and credit union sectors to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. I have engaged with representatives from both sectors through the Consumer Finance Forum and Financial Inclusion Policy Forum, which are bringing financial services and consumer group representatives together to discuss how to best support people through this period. I also attended a roundtable of building society chief executives hosted by the Building Societies Association in July 2020, to discuss experiences of COVID-19 and future priorities. HM Treasury officials have also been engaging with the Building Society Association on a regular basis to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and discuss the application of relevant measures to the sector.

Fair4All Finance, the independent body set up by Government to distribute dormant assets funding to support financial inclusion, has also set up a £5 million resilience fund to support credit unions and community development finance institutions in England.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the covid-19 pandemic on the UK Credit Union sector; and if he will make a statement.

The Government recognises the vital role of credit unions in the financial wellbeing of their communities, providing an ethical home for their members’ savings, and affordable loans to those who may otherwise have to resort to high-cost lenders. The Government also recognises the important role played by building societies in supporting their local communities, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. In April 2020, I wrote to building society and credit union trade bodies to thank frontline staff for their efforts to continue to provide essential services to their members.

HM Treasury has regularly engaged with regulators and representatives from the building society and credit union sectors to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. I have engaged with representatives from both sectors through the Consumer Finance Forum and Financial Inclusion Policy Forum, which are bringing financial services and consumer group representatives together to discuss how to best support people through this period. I also attended a roundtable of building society chief executives hosted by the Building Societies Association in July 2020, to discuss experiences of COVID-19 and future priorities. HM Treasury officials have also been engaging with the Building Society Association on a regular basis to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and discuss the application of relevant measures to the sector.

Fair4All Finance, the independent body set up by Government to distribute dormant assets funding to support financial inclusion, has also set up a £5 million resilience fund to support credit unions and community development finance institutions in England.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps his Department has taken to ensure that a repeat of the Wirecard collapse could not occur in the UK.

The German merchant acquirer Wirecard AG entered administration in June. It has a UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA ensures that payments firms make suitable safeguarding arrangements in compliance with the regulatory requirements as a condition of firms receiving FCA authorisation, protecting client money.

Shortly after the entry into administration of Wirecard AG, the FCA temporarily blocked the distribution of funds from the UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, to ensure client monies were properly safeguarded. Wirecard UK is being wound down but the business will continue to trade while alternative arrangements are being made with its card providers.

Payments in the UK have seen rapid change over recent years, including the growth of firms like Wirecard UK. These changes offer exciting opportunities for UK businesses and consumers, with many making payments faster and cheaper. However, and as will always be the case with a rapidly changing technological landscape, they also present new challenges and risks.

Given the pace of change, a HM Treasury led review of the payments landscape was announced in June 2019. A Call for Evidence is the first stage in this review, open until 20 October.

The Government recognises the crucial role of challenger banks in providing customers with more choice and is committed to maintaining competition in financial services. We recognise the COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for many firms, including challenger banks, and we continue to engage regularly with the sector to understand how firms are being impacted.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the effectiveness of the regulatory response to the collapse of Wirecard; and if he will make a statement.

The German merchant acquirer Wirecard AG entered administration in June. It has a UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA ensures that payments firms make suitable safeguarding arrangements in compliance with the regulatory requirements as a condition of firms receiving FCA authorisation, protecting client money.

Shortly after the entry into administration of Wirecard AG, the FCA temporarily blocked the distribution of funds from the UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, to ensure client monies were properly safeguarded. Wirecard UK is being wound down but the business will continue to trade while alternative arrangements are being made with its card providers.

Payments in the UK have seen rapid change over recent years, including the growth of firms like Wirecard UK. These changes offer exciting opportunities for UK businesses and consumers, with many making payments faster and cheaper. However, and as will always be the case with a rapidly changing technological landscape, they also present new challenges and risks.

Given the pace of change, a HM Treasury led review of the payments landscape was announced in June 2019. A Call for Evidence is the first stage in this review, open until 20 October.

The Government recognises the crucial role of challenger banks in providing customers with more choice and is committed to maintaining competition in financial services. We recognise the COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for many firms, including challenger banks, and we continue to engage regularly with the sector to understand how firms are being impacted.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps his Department has taken to help protect UK-based challenger banks and other financial institutions from the potential future collapse of a payment processor company.

The German merchant acquirer Wirecard AG entered administration in June. It has a UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA ensures that payments firms make suitable safeguarding arrangements in compliance with the regulatory requirements as a condition of firms receiving FCA authorisation, protecting client money.

Shortly after the entry into administration of Wirecard AG, the FCA temporarily blocked the distribution of funds from the UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, to ensure client monies were properly safeguarded. Wirecard UK is being wound down but the business will continue to trade while alternative arrangements are being made with its card providers.

Payments in the UK have seen rapid change over recent years, including the growth of firms like Wirecard UK. These changes offer exciting opportunities for UK businesses and consumers, with many making payments faster and cheaper. However, and as will always be the case with a rapidly changing technological landscape, they also present new challenges and risks.

Given the pace of change, a HM Treasury led review of the payments landscape was announced in June 2019. A Call for Evidence is the first stage in this review, open until 20 October.

The Government recognises the crucial role of challenger banks in providing customers with more choice and is committed to maintaining competition in financial services. We recognise the COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for many firms, including challenger banks, and we continue to engage regularly with the sector to understand how firms are being impacted.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to make it easier for UK-based financial institutions to work with multiple payment processors.

The German merchant acquirer Wirecard AG entered administration in June. It has a UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA ensures that payments firms make suitable safeguarding arrangements in compliance with the regulatory requirements as a condition of firms receiving FCA authorisation, protecting client money.

Shortly after the entry into administration of Wirecard AG, the FCA temporarily blocked the distribution of funds from the UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, to ensure client monies were properly safeguarded. Wirecard UK is being wound down but the business will continue to trade while alternative arrangements are being made with its card providers.

Payments in the UK have seen rapid change over recent years, including the growth of firms like Wirecard UK. These changes offer exciting opportunities for UK businesses and consumers, with many making payments faster and cheaper. However, and as will always be the case with a rapidly changing technological landscape, they also present new challenges and risks.

Given the pace of change, a HM Treasury led review of the payments landscape was announced in June 2019. A Call for Evidence is the first stage in this review, open until 20 October.

The Government recognises the crucial role of challenger banks in providing customers with more choice and is committed to maintaining competition in financial services. We recognise the COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for many firms, including challenger banks, and we continue to engage regularly with the sector to understand how firms are being impacted.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the covid-19 pandemic on the UK challenger banks sector; and if he will make a statement.

The German merchant acquirer Wirecard AG entered administration in June. It has a UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA ensures that payments firms make suitable safeguarding arrangements in compliance with the regulatory requirements as a condition of firms receiving FCA authorisation, protecting client money.

Shortly after the entry into administration of Wirecard AG, the FCA temporarily blocked the distribution of funds from the UK subsidiary, Wirecard UK, to ensure client monies were properly safeguarded. Wirecard UK is being wound down but the business will continue to trade while alternative arrangements are being made with its card providers.

Payments in the UK have seen rapid change over recent years, including the growth of firms like Wirecard UK. These changes offer exciting opportunities for UK businesses and consumers, with many making payments faster and cheaper. However, and as will always be the case with a rapidly changing technological landscape, they also present new challenges and risks.

Given the pace of change, a HM Treasury led review of the payments landscape was announced in June 2019. A Call for Evidence is the first stage in this review, open until 20 October.

The Government recognises the crucial role of challenger banks in providing customers with more choice and is committed to maintaining competition in financial services. We recognise the COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for many firms, including challenger banks, and we continue to engage regularly with the sector to understand how firms are being impacted.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the report entitled Coronavirus Survey Report, published by the APPG on Challenger Banks and Building Societies, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of the recommendations in that report; and if he will make a statement.

The Government recognises the crucial role of challenger banks and building societies in providing customers with more choice on the high street and is committed to maintaining competition in financial services.

HM Treasury officials have consistently engaged with regulators and representatives from the building society and challenger bank sectors on issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic. I have regularly engaged with representatives from the building society sector through the Consumer Finance Forum and Financial Inclusion Policy Forum, which are bringing financial services and consumer group representatives together to discuss how to best support people through this period.

The Government recognises that the COVID-19 crisis has been difficult for many organisations, including challenger banks and building societies.

That is why in April 2020, I wrote to thank frontline staff for their efforts to continue to provide essential services to their members.

We have considered the Coronavirus Survey Report produced by the APPG on Challenger Banks and Building Societies and thank the APPG for taking the time to produce the report. The Government remains committed to ensuring that challenger institutions have an appropriate environment to grow and offer more robust competition to the established players. The government will continue working with the regulators to ensure the UK has a highly competitive banking sector, working in the interests of all consumers and businesses right across the country. We will continue to work closely with challenger institutions and building societies as we consider the next steps in our economic recovery

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what additional resources she will provide to the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority for inspection and enforcement activities from 1 January 2021 to help tackle abuses of the new points-based immigration system.

As we replace freedom of movement with the Points-Based System, we remain committed to preventing any abuse of the system, including by protecting individuals from modern slavery and exploitation by criminal traffickers and unscrupulous employers.

The Government spends £33m a year on state enforcement of employment rights to support the work of the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA), HMRC’s National Minimum Wage Team and the Employment Agency Standards Inspectorate. GLAA resources for 2021/2022 have not yet been agreed.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
19th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what her policy is on joining (a) Europol, (b) Eurojust, (c) the Schengen Information System (SIS II), (d) the European Criminal Records Information System and (e) Passenger Name Records Data on 1 January 2021; and if she will make a statement.

The safety and security of our citizens is the Government’s top priority.

We’ve been negotiating an agreement with the EU on law enforcement and criminal justice to equip operational partners on both sides with capabilities to protect citizens and bring criminals to justice.

As set out in the UK’s published Approach to Negotiations, we believe an agreement in this area should include: arrangements that support data exchange for law enforcement purposes; operational cooperation between law enforcement authorities; and judicial cooperation in criminal matters. We have therefore proposed this agreement should include capabilities similar to those provided by SIS II, ECRIS and PNR.

The UK is not seeking membership of either Europol or Eurojust – that is not how third country arrangements with these agencies work. In line with the UK Approach, our legal text provides for cooperation between the UK and Europol and UK and Eurojust to facilitate multilateral law enforcement and criminal justice cooperation.

The UK will continue to be a global leader on security and one of the safest countries in the world.

19th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to intercept criminals at the point of entry ahead of the implementation of the Electronic Travel Authorisation scheme.

The Home Office takes the issue of preventing foreign criminals entering the UK extremely seriously.

Using advance passenger information Border Force operates an Authority to Carry “No Fly” Scheme.? Foreign national offenders previously deported from the UK and individuals excluded from the UK on the grounds that their presence would be non-conducive to the public good due to their involvement in serious criminality are among those who carriers are refused authority to carry to UK. ?This action is disrupting criminals from even arriving into UK ports of entry.

In addition to our pre-travel checks every passenger arriving in the UK at passport control is checked in order to identify criminal, security and immigration concerns.. Where we are aware of individuals who pose a risk, Border Force officers can, and do, refuse them entry.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
3rd Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she plans to bring forward legislative proposals to establish the electronic travel authorisation scheme; and whether that scheme will be operational by 1 January 2021.

We intend to introduce legislation to establish the Electronic Travel Authorisation scheme next year. Until this legislation is passed the scheme cannot be introduced.

This scheme will be developed for delivery as part of the wider multi-year programme of change to the UK’s Points-Based Border and Immigration system.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
5th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what training requirements her Department plans to include in outsourcing contracts for people undertaking asylum interviews to identify cases of human trafficking and modern-day slavery.

Asylum Operations are exploring many options to reduce the number of outstanding asylum claims. Alongside seeking temporary resource from within the Home Office and other government departments, we are also exploring with third-party suppliers to test the viability of whether they can deliver the support required as a temporary, short term measure. Asylum interviews have not been outsourced, and at this stage we are only exploring the potential feasibility.

Third party interviewing officers will complete a bespoke training package, delivered by the qualified asylum operations training team, that has been designed specifically to meet their needs. The course will include training specifically about modern slavery and safeguarding awareness. Anyone who conducts asylum interviews receives thorough training to ensure they are fully equipped for the role.

To guarantee governance and accountability, mechanisms are in place to provide oversight of third-party interviews, the department has a quality assurance process which assesses the quality of decisions, interviews and the application of Home Office policy. This will include those interviews conducted by third party interviewing officers

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what progress has been made on introducing automated exit checks for people departing the UK; and whether exit checks will be carried out on (a) all travellers and (b) at all ports from 1 January 2021.

We re-introduced exit checks in April 2015 to further complement our work on border security, plus support the Home Office’s wider work to deal with illegal immigration.

The vast majority of passengers leaving the country on scheduled commercial international air, sea and rail routes now go through exit checks. The data collected is already providing the police and security services with information to help track the movements of known criminals and terrorists.

Border Force hold data for outbound alerts issued by Border Force at the National Border Targeting Centre (NBTC). However, we do not hold a breakdown of the data in the format requested.

A variety of agencies, including Border Force, undertake in person outbound interventions, as a result of this activity there is no single record held on their respective outcomes.

Government is working to ensure all parties including other government departments, traders, industry and passengers are prepared for the changes which will come into effect at the UK border on 1 January 2021.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
10th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment she has made of the potential for visa-free entry for EEA national visitors after the end of free movement to be abused by human traffickers to exploit EEA nationals in the UK; and what plans she has to prevent such exploitation.

At the end of the Transition Period EEA nationals will become subject to immigration control.

The UK does not intend to subject EEA visitors to a visa requirement at the end of the transition period. Visitors to the UK are assessed against the same suitability and eligibility requirements regardless of nationality. The only difference between visa nationals and non-visa nationals is where the assessment of their suitability and eligibility for entry to the UK is carried out, therefore the absence of a visa requirement does not materially change the risk of being exploited.

We continue to fulfil our public sector equality duties under s149 of the Equality Act 2010. ?We have prepared an overarching equality impactassessment (EIA) for the future points-based system. This will continue to be considered as policies are developed.

We are carefully considering the conclusions made by the Windrush Lessons Learned Review?and?will ensure further evaluation is taken forward in line with these recommendations.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
10th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many (a) identified potential victims of human trafficking or modern slavery and (b) persons prosecuted for human trafficking or modern slavery offences were stopped from entering the UK having tried to enter with forged, illegal or fraudulent documents or were otherwise undocumented in each calendar year from 2016 to 2019 inclusive.

The specific information requested is not readily available and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost. This is because a manual search through individual records would be required to identify individuals who have been refused entry to the UK from 2016 to 2019 as well as searching such records to identify victims of modern slavery who were identified and referred to the National Referral Mechanism

Tackling human trafficking and modern slavery, both in the UK and overseas, is a priority for the government. The Modern Slavery Act 2015 gives law enforcement agencies the tools to tackle modern slavery and provides protection for victims. The Modern Slavery Act also includes powers which enable law enforcement officers, including Border Force, to pursue modern slavery perpetrators at sea.

Border Force has a duty of care to all crossing the border and adults with vulnerability for any reason will be dealt with respect and care.

The Home Office publishes statistics on referrals into the National Referral Mechanism on a quarterly basis. These reports detail the number of referrals submitted into the NRM by Border Force, however they are not broken down by port. These reports can be located via the following links:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-referral-mechanism-statistics

https://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20170404150655/http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/publications/national-referral-mechanism-statistics

https://nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/who-we-are/publications?search=&category%5B%5D=3&=%2Fwho-we-are%2Fpublications%3Flimit%3D15%26sort%3Dtitle%26direction%3Dasc&limit=100&tag=

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
9th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many individuals have been refused entry to the UK at all ports of entry as a result of convictions for human trafficking and modern slavery or similar offences (a) in the UK, (b) in the EU and (c) in the rest of the world, in each calendar year from 2016 to 2019 inclusive.

The specific information you have requested is not readily available and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost. This is because a manual search through individual records would be required to identify individuals have been refused entry to the UK from 2016 to 2019 inclusive

We do not hold data on those refused in EU countries and the rest of the world

Tackling human trafficking and modern slavery, both in the UK and overseas, is a priority for the government. The Modern Slavery Act 2015 gives law enforcement agencies the tools to tackle modern slavery and provides protection for victims. The Modern Slavery Act also includes powers which enable law enforcement officers, including Border Force, to pursue modern slavery perpetrators at sea.

Border Force has a duty of care to all crossing the border and adults with vulnerability for any reason will be dealt with respect and care.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
9th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many potential victims of modern slavery were identified and referred to the National Referral Mechanism at (a) seaports, (b) airports and (c) rail ports in each year from 2016 to 2019 inclusive.

The location from which a First Responder identified and referred a potential victim of modern slavery to the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) is not captured in a reportable format.

The Home Office publishes statistics on referrals into the National Referral Mechanism on a quarterly basis. These reports detail the number of referrals submitted into the NRM by Border Force, however they are not broken down by port. These reports can be located via the following links:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-referral-mechanism-statistics

https://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20170404150655/http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/publications/national-referral-mechanism-statistics

https://nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/who-we-are/publications?search=&category%5B%5D=3&=%2Fwho-we-are%2Fpublications%3Flimit%3D15%26sort%3Dtitle%26direction%3Dasc&limit=100&tag=

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
21st Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she plans to update the Modern Slavery Strategy.

The UK Government is committed to tackling the heinous crime of modern slavery and bringing those individuals responsible both in the UK and overseas to justice. The response is underpinned by the Modern Slavery Strategy 2014 and the Modern Slavery Act 2015, the first legislation of its kind in the world.

The Government is identifying more victims of modern slavery and doing more to bring perpetrators to justice than ever before. In 2019, the Government’s manifesto included a commitment to continue the campaign to eradicate the scourge of modern slavery and human trafficking. In May 2020, at the Prime Minister’s Virtual Summit on Hidden Harms, the Government reiterated the absolute priority that we place on preventing and protecting those at risk from hidden harms, including modern slavery.

In addition, the Government recently established the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) Transformation Programme, which will address the challenges that the current NRM system faces. The NRM is the process by which the UK identifies and supports potential victims of modern slavery. Building on the successes of recent NRM reforms, the NRM Transformation Programme will make sure genuine victims have their cases settled promptly, receive support tailored to their needs, and are empowered to move on with their lives.

The UK is the first country in the world to require businesses to report on the steps they have taken to tackle modern slavery in their operations and global supply chains. This landmark ‘Transparency in Supply Chains’ provision in the Modern Slavery Act encourages a change in business culture, spotlighting modern slavery risks on boardroom agendas and within the international human rights community. In addition, on 26 March 2020, we became the first country to publish a Government Modern Slavery Statement setting out the steps we have taken to identify and prevent modern slavery in our own supply chains.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
16th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what support is provided to potential victims of human trafficking who are also asylum seekers in section 98 accommodation awaiting their decision.

The Government is committed to ensuring the support of potential and confirmed victims of modern slavery.

Section 98 asylum accommodation provides temporary, generally full board accommodation. This provides in-kind support provisions to meet the individual’s essential living needs.

Individuals with a positive reasonable grounds decision and have consented to Victim Care Contract (VCC) support, who are also asylum seekers in section 98 accommodation will receive essential support services from a VCC support worker who can provide specialist support and advocacy services to help assist victims to rebuild their lives.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
11th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of imposing restrictions on the online activity of convicted sex offenders.

The UK has some of the toughest powers in the world to deal with sex offenders and we are committed to ensuring that the system is as robust as it can be. The Government believes that the current legislation provides a sufficiently robust framework to allow the police to monitor sex offenders and minimise the likelihood of reoffending. We keep this legislation under constant review to ensure that law enforcement continues to have the tools it needs to tackle the evolving threat of online exploitation.

Under current legislation, sex offenders can have a range of restrictions placed on them depending on what the court deems necessary to protect the public. This can include; a condition that the individual cannot use any computer unless specialist computer monitoring software is installed on it; prohibiting the offender from using any device capable of accessing the internet unless it has the capacity to retain and display the history of internet use; the offender makes the device available on request for inspection by a police officer; and prohibiting the offender from deleting their internet history.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
19th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what progress her Department has been made on developing a registry of modern slavery statements.

The Government has committed to develop a new gov.uk registry for organisations in scope of the requirements of the Modern Slavery Act to publish their modern slavery statements. As well as enabling the Government to monitor compliance with the legislation, the registry will increase transparency - by making it easier for the consumers, NGOs and investors to find and scrutinise modern slavery statements.

The Discovery and Alpha phases of the digital project have now been completed. These stages involved user research with business, public bodies, NGOs and investors to inform the design of the service. The project is now progressing to the Beta phase of work, which will involve further research with users as we build and launch the service.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
19th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the National Referral Mechanism for protecting children that are victims of (a) human trafficking and (b) modern slavery.

Modern slavery is an umbrella term which includes trafficking, slavery and forced or compulsory labour.

The Government is committed to providing all child victims of modern slavery the support they need by ensuring the effectiveness of the National Referral Mechanism (NRM). While referrals are made to the NRM – our system for identifying, supporting and protecting victims, the support they need is provided by Local Authorities under their safeguarding responsibilities.

The safety and welfare of all child victims, irrespective of whether they have experienced slavery and/ or trafficking, are addressed as the priority. Local authorities are responsible for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all children in their area. If a child in the NRM becomes looked after, they will be entitled to the same level of support and care as all looked after children regardless of their nationality or immigration status. Local children's services will work in close co-operation with the police and other statutory agencies to offer potential child victims of modern slavery the protection and support they require.

In addition to this statutory support, the Government has expanded Independent Child Trafficking Guardians (ICTGs) to one third of local authorities in England and Wales. ICTGs are an additional source of advice and support for all potential child victims of modern slavery, irrespective of nationality, and somebody who can advocate on their behalf.

In October 2017, the Government announced an ambitious package of reforms to the NRM. These reforms enable the NRM to deliver quicker and more certain decision-making that stakeholders and victims have confidence in; improved support for adult victims before, during and after the NRM; improved identification of victims; and improved support to child victims of modern slavery. More information on the NRM reform is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-referral-mechanism-reform/national-referral-mechanism-reform

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
21st Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of introducing an exemption from council tax for unoccupied listed buildings to reflect the application of business rates to listed buildings.

The Government is committed to the protection of the historic environment and has put in place a strong legislative and planning policy framework to achieve this. The Government also supports the maintenance of listed properties through “Our Heritage” funding, further information about which is available at: https://www.hlf.org.uk/looking-funding/our-grant-programmes/our-heritage. Although there are no plans to introduce a council tax exemption for unoccupied listed buildings, local authorities do have powers to provide discretionary council tax discounts where they consider such action appropriate.

15th May 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, with reference to the Homelessness Code of Guidance for Local Authorities section 8(3), whether victims of modern slavery and human trafficking fall within the vulnerable persons category within that guidance and are considered to be in priority need for accommodation.

Modern slavery is a barbaric crime which destroys the lives of some of the most vulnerable in our society.

A person who has been a victim of trafficking or modern slavery may have a priority need for accommodation if they are assessed as being vulnerable according to section 189(1)(c) of the 1996 Act.

As detailed in section 25(7) of the Homelessness Code of Guidance for Local Authorities, the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) is the process by which people who may be victims of modern slavery are identified and supported by the UK Government. All potential victims of modern slavery who receive a positive Reasonable Grounds decision are able to access a minimum of 45-days Victim Care Contract support during their recovery and reflection period, which includes access to safe accommodation.

We want to ensure that local areas have the tools they need to identify Modern Slavery where they see it and provide the right support to victims. That is why in the Rough Sleeping Strategy we have commissioned training for frontline staff on how best to identify and support this group. Additionally, we are piloting new approaches with six local authority areas to identify best practice in supporting victims to move out of National Referral Mechanism support and link up with local services. These measures aim to reduce the risk of destitution or re-trafficking for victims.

1st Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps he is taking to reduce the backlog of child access cases in family courts following the covid-19 outbreak.

The protection of children, in particular those who are most vulnerable, is a priority for this government and this has never been more important than during the Covid-19 pandemic. I am extremely grateful for the dedication of family justice professionals at this unprecedented time.

The family courts have been quick to respond to the pandemic. The cases deemed to be most urgent are being prioritised, and where suitable, cases are being heard remotely to allow this vital work to continue during lockdown periods. Hundreds of courtrooms have since reopened to allow face-to-face hearings, and a record number of sitting days were used in June and July 2020 with family judges sitting more days than previously planned before the pandemic.

We are continuing to work across the family justice system to boost the throughput of cases, building on steps already taken such as enhancing the role of legal advisors and encouraging the more effective triaging and routing of cases according to type.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
9th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Justice, how many (i) Slavery and Trafficking Prevention Orders and (ii) Slavery and Trafficking Risk Orders were made by courts in each calendar year from 2016 to 2019 inclusive; and how many of those were made in respect of (a) EEA or Swiss nationals, excluding UK nationals and (b) UK nationals.

The number of i) Slavery and Trafficking Prevention Orders and ii) Slavery and Trafficking Risk Orders in each calendar year from 2016- 2019 can be found in the accompanying tables. Robust data in relation to nationality is not held in the HMCTS courts Management Information Database.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
9th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many foreign national offenders convicted of human trafficking or modern slavery offences were returned to their country of origin under (a) the Early Removal Scheme, (b) an EU Prisoner Transfer Framework Decision, (c) the Additional Protocol to the Council of Europe Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons and (d) bilateral prisoner transfer agreements in each year from 2016 to 2019; and under each scheme how many returned offenders were EEA or Swiss nationals in each of those years.

We continue to remove foreign national offenders where routes are available.

Since 2010, we have removed over 55,000 foreign national offenders from our prisons, immigration removal centres and the community, with 4,743 removed in 2019/20.

We are absolutely committed to removing foreign national offenders from the UK and continue to work closely with international governments to maximise the removal of serious and persistent offenders.

We are constantly reviewing progress to ensure that all options are being pursued and that our early removal mechanisms are working as effectively as possible.

The latest published information on foreign national offenders returned under the Early Removal and Facilitated Returns Schemes is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-enforcement-data-august-2020 (Table FNO_09 in Transparency data Immigration Enforcement data: August 2020, provides the numbers of foreign nationals removed under the Early Removal Scheme every year since 2010 but that there is no published data that breaks down these numbers by nationality or offence type).

FNOs repatriated under EUPTFD convicted of human trafficking or modern slavery offences

FNOs repatriated under CoE Convention convicted of human trafficking or modern slavery offences

FNOs repatriated under bilateral PTAs convicted of human trafficking or modern slavery offences

2016

2

0

0

2017

0

0

0

2018

1

0

0

2019

2

0

0

All five prisoners repatriated under the EUPTFD were EEA nationals.

Lucy Frazer
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
9th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Justice, how many people were (a) prosecuted and (b) convicted of human trafficking and modern slavery offences as the principal offence; of those people how many were EEA or Swiss nationals excluding UK nationals; how many additional people flagged by the CPS as being investigated for human trafficking and modern slavery offences were (i) prosecuted and (ii) convicted of other offences; and of those people how many were EEA or Swiss nationals excluding UK nationals in each calendar year from 2016 to 2019.

The Ministry of Justice has published data on the number of people prosecuted and convicted in England and Wales up to the year ending December 2019 for the following human trafficking-related offences and offences under the Modern Slavery Act 2015, available at the link below:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/888344/HO-code-tool-principal-offence-2019.xlsx

Filter ‘Offence’ by:

  • 72 Human trafficking for sexual exploitation
  • 78.1 Human trafficking for non-sexual exploitation
  • 106 Modern Slavery

The resulting table will then display the those prosecuted and convicted for the above offences over the 2013-2019 period.

However, it is not possible to identify the nationality of the defendants as this information is not held in the courts proceedings database.

Moreover, CPS flagged data relating to individuals prosecuted for human trafficking or modern slavery does not identify the specific offences prosecuted or convicted.

Alex Chalk
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)