Melanie Onn Portrait

Melanie Onn

Labour - Former Member for Great Grimsby

Melanie Onn is not a member of any APPGs
6 Former APPG memberships
22q11 Syndrome, Air Ambulances, Epilepsy, Fisheries, Foodbanks, Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Consolidation, &c., Bills (Joint Committee)
6th Nov 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Procedure Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Shadow Minister (Housing, Communities and Local Government) (Housing)
9th Jan 2018 - 27th Mar 2019
Shadow Minister (Housing)
3rd Jul 2017 - 9th Jan 2018
Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee
31st Oct 2016 - 3rd May 2017
Procedure Committee
31st Oct 2016 - 3rd May 2017
Consolidation, &c., Bills (Joint Committee)
9th Nov 2015 - 3rd May 2017
Shadow Deputy Leader of the House of Commons
18th Sep 2015 - 27th Jun 2016
Energy and Climate Change Committee
8th Jul 2015 - 26th Oct 2015


Division Voting information

Melanie Onn has voted in 732 divisions, and 5 times against the majority of their Party.

22 Oct 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill - View Vote Context
Melanie Onn voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 19 Labour Aye votes vs 217 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 329 Noes - 299
4 Sep 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 6) Bill - View Vote Context
Melanie Onn voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 8 Labour Aye votes vs 224 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 65 Noes - 495
1 Apr 2019 - EU: Withdrawal and Future Relationship (Votes) - View Vote Context
Melanie Onn voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 24 Labour No votes vs 203 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 280 Noes - 292
27 Mar 2019 - EU: Withdrawal and Future Relationship Votes - View Vote Context
Melanie Onn voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 27 Labour No votes vs 198 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 268 Noes - 295
11 Sep 2015 - Assisted Dying (No. 2) Bill - View Vote Context
Melanie Onn voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 73 Labour Aye votes vs 91 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 118 Noes - 330
View All Melanie Onn Division Votes

All Debates

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Rishi Sunak (Conservative)
Chancellor of the Exchequer
(59 debate interactions)
Heather Wheeler (Conservative)
(42 debate interactions)
Andrea Leadsom (Conservative)
(30 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
View all Melanie Onn's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Melanie Onn

24th October 2019
Melanie Onn signed this EDM on Monday 28th October 2019

Timetable for the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill

Tabled by: Lord Field of Birkenhead (Crossbench - Birkenhead)
That this House calls on the Government, if it is granted a flexible extension to Article 50 by the European Union, to work to a 14-day timetable for passing the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill, and to bring to an immediate end the flexible extension as soon as the Bill …
14 signatures
(Most recent: 29 Oct 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 7
Independent: 3
Conservative: 3
Crossbench: 1
3rd July 2019
Melanie Onn signed this EDM as a sponsor on Wednesday 3rd July 2019

FINANCIAL BURDEN OF SCHOOL UNIFORMS

Tabled by: Melanie Onn (Labour - Great Grimsby)
That this House notes the ongoing issue that many families around the country face regarding the cost of school uniforms; further notes the findings of The Children’s Society study entitled The Wrong Blazer from 2018 which showed that one million children live in families across England who are getting into …
48 signatures
(Most recent: 3 Sep 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 36
Independent: 4
Liberal Democrat: 3
Democratic Unionist Party: 2
Crossbench: 1
Scottish National Party: 1
Green Party: 1
The Independent Group for Change: 1
View All Melanie Onn's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Melanie Onn, 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.


1 Urgent Question tabled by Melanie Onn

Thursday 20th December 2018

Melanie Onn has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

2 Bills introduced by Melanie Onn


The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will make no further progress. A Bill to make provision for statements made by persons adversely affected by a crime to be used in sentencing proceedings in court; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 5th February 2019
(Read Debate)

A Bill to make provision about the safeguarding of workers’ rights derived from European Union legislation after the withdrawal of the UK from the EU; and for connected purposes


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 7th September 2016

Melanie Onn has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


333 Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
9 Other Department Questions
30th Apr 2018
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, when she plans to implement the dual discrimination provisions set out in s14 of the Equality Act 2010.

We keep un-commenced provisions of the Equality Act 2010 under review. Successive governments have not considered that sufficient evidence exists to justify the cost and complexity of introducing section 14 of that Act, which would enable a single discrimination claim to be brought under any two characteristics in the Act.

People may already bring a claim under more than one characteristic in relation to the same alleged case of discrimination, and courts and tribunals can consider such claims concurrently.

Victoria Atkins
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
7th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, pursuant to her oral contribution of 2 March 2016 to the Ninth Delegated Legislation Committee on the draft Renewables Obligation Closure Etc. (Amendment) Order 2016, what the evidential basis is for the statement that, with reference to the solar industry, it is not true to say that there are thousands of job losses and that there will be thousands more.

We see a strong future for solar PV in the UK.

In order to support the path to subsidy-free solar deployment, we have decided to keep the Feed-in-Tariff scheme open, and expect that the scheme could support 15,000-23,000 jobs in the sector. There will continue to be jobs in the operation and maintenance of existing solar installations.

We also expect subsidy-free solar to be an increasingly attractive option. Lightsource, the biggest solar developer in the UK, have said publically that they will be installing and connecting subsidy-free sites in 2016.

Support for solar comes directly from people's bills, so when costs come down, so should support. Therefore we have taken steps to control the costs of support schemes and put solar on a path to delivering without subsidy.

3rd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, if she will estimate the change in the number of jobs that will be lost in the solar industry as a result of the early closure of the renewables obligation.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change does not maintain data on the number of jobs in the solar industry. In order to support the path to subsidy-free solar deployment, we have decided to keep the Feed-in-Tariff scheme open, and expect that the scheme could support 15,000-23,000 jobs in the sector.

We expect subsidy-free solar to be an increasingly attractive option. Lightsource, the biggest solar developer in the UK, have said publically that they will be installing and connecting subsidy-free sites in 2016.

3rd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what the change in the number of jobs in the solar industry has been since May 2015.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change does not maintain data on the number of jobs in the solar industry. In order to support the path to subsidy-free solar deployment, we have decided to keep the Feed-in-Tariff scheme open, and expect that the scheme could support 15,000-23,000 jobs in the sector.

We expect subsidy-free solar to be an increasingly attractive option. Lightsource, the biggest solar developer in the UK, have said publically that they will be installing and connecting subsidy-free sites in 2016.

15th Jan 2016
To ask the Rt. hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington representing the House of Commons Commission, what the average salary is for employees of the House of Commons.

The average salary (basic pay) of staff employed by the House of Commons was £36,784 as at 31 December 2015.

8th Dec 2015
To ask the Rt. hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington representing the House of Commons Commission, what proportion of unused and uneaten food produced or bought to be served on the parliamentary estate is (a) recycled, (b) sent to landfill and (c) donated to food aid providers.

All catering food waste segregated at the kitchens and food preparation areas is recovered offsite by means of anaerobic digestion to produce methane fuel and fertiliser. No catering waste from Parliament is sent to landfill, and no uneaten food is donated to food aid providers.

We are continuing to identify opportunities to reduce the amount of food waste and to increase the proportion we do generate that goes for recovery. A food waste audit to support this is due to take place later this month in the House of Commons.

Food waste from prepared dishes in House of Commons catering outlets is 3% against sales. This is well below the national average for the catering industry of 5%; the Sustainable Restaurant Association has rated the House of Commons as a good practice organisation in respect of food waste.

25th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment she has made of the effect of changes to planning permission for onshore wind projects on investor confidence in the offshore wind sector.

The Government is putting in place measures to fulfil our commitment to end new subsidies for onshore wind and to change the law so that local people have the final say on onshore windfarm applications.

These measures do not apply to offshore wind.

The UK is the world leader in offshore wind with significantly more installed capacity than any other country in the world. The Government expects offshore wind installed capacity in the UK to double by the end of the decade, from 5GW today to around 10GW.

25th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what assessment she has made of the potential effects of withdrawal of subsidies to onshore wind projects on investor confidence in the offshore wind sector.

The Government is putting in place measures to fulfil our commitment to end new subsidies for onshore wind and to change the law so that local people have the final say on onshore windfarm applications.

These measures do not apply to offshore wind.

The UK is the world leader in offshore wind with significantly more installed capacity than any other country in the world. The Government expects offshore wind installed capacity in the UK to double by the end of the decade, from 5GW today to around 10GW.

14th Jul 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the performance of Atos in delivery of services under government contracts.

As requested by PAC, the Cabinet Office has undertaken a full review of all Atos contracts with central Government with an annual spend over £10 million in the fiscal year 2015-16, and of their relationships as a supplier to the Crown.

The Cabinet Office will write to the Public Accounts Committee with the findings of the review in the summer 2016.

5th Feb 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, on how many occasions government departments have paid bills to small and medium-sized businesses more than 60 days after the date the invoice was received since 2010-11.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to her on 5 February 2016 to UIN: 25347.

5th Feb 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the total value is of the bills government departments have paid to private businesses more than 60 days after the date the invoice was received since 2010-11.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to her on 5 February 2016 to UIN: 25347.

5th Feb 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the total value is of the bills that government departments have paid to small businesses more than 60 days after the date the invoice was received since 2010-11.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to her on 5 February 2016 to UIN: 25347.

2nd Feb 2016
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, on how many occasions government departments have paid bills to private businesses more than 60 days after the date the invoice was received since 2010-11.

This information is not held centrally.

Departments publish, on their pages on GOV.UK, quarterly reports on the percentage of undisputed invoices they pay within 5 and 30 days. From the start of the next financial year they will also report quarterly on their liability to pay interest under the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998.

26th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether she has made an assessment of the potential risk to the UK's future fuel security should the UK become reliant on Russian or Middle Eastern petrol in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

If the UK leaves the EU without a withdrawal agreement, supplies of crude oil, fuel, and important chemicals for refineries are expected to remain available through the UK’s diverse supply chains from Europe and the rest of the world. Crude oil and petroleum products are traded through liquid international markets.

The Government has been working closely with the fuel industry to minimise the risks from leaving the EU on fuel supplies. The Government also has a long-standing fuel supply contingency programme that includes measures that can be deployed in support of industry to maintain supplies.

Kwasi Kwarteng
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
17th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, which ministers he has appointed to the taskforce to find a new buyer for the Novartis site in Great Grimsby.

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Department of International Trade are closely monitoring the situation. We are working with the company, the local authority and Local Enterprise Partnerships to support their efforts in helping to preserve highly skilled jobs in the area and to help find a buyer for the site.

Andrew Stephenson
Minister of State (Department for Transport)
21st May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he plans to start the implementation of phase one of the Greater Grimsby Town Deal, and if he will make a statement.

The ground-breaking Greater Grimsby Town Deal was launched on 5 July 2018 beginning a stronger relationship between central government and local partners. The Town Deal meets a commitment to pilot a new approach to driving growth in our towns and was included in the Industrial Strategy, our long-term plan to boost productivity by backing businesses to create high-quality, well paid jobs throughout the United Kingdom, with investment in skills, industries, and infrastructure, as well as ensuring our places realise their full potential.

The Town Deal is focused on four inter-related themes, namely:

  • driving economic growth
  • accelerating housing delivery
  • transforming Grimsby’s waterfront
  • improving skills and educational attainment.

The Government has been working intensively with North East Lincolnshire Council, the Project Board, and the private sector on implementation since the launch of the Town Deal and there has been considerable progress.

We have continued to support delivery of the Grimsby Heritage Action Zone and, in January 2019, announced a further £3.2m investment in heritage, culture and creative industries as a catalyst for economic growth in Grimsby through DCMS’s Cultural Development Fund. We are delivering in skills too. The Department for Education announced that the University of Lincoln-led Institute of Technology (IoT) proposal was one of 12 successful IoT proposals that will be established across the country. The IoT will operate across Lincolnshire, including Grimsby, and will be a key plank of the Town Deal.

Progress continues to be made on implementation of the South Humber Industrial Investment Programme including starting important infrastructure works to get these strategic economic sites ready for market, including the Humber Link Road and highways improvements to Moody Lane.

We have also been working closely with the Council and other partners to support regeneration of Grimsby’s town centre and reconnecting it with its waterfront and we hope to be saying more about this in the near future.

1st Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans he has to support the domestic gasoline industry in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

This Government remains committed to supporting industry through EU exit and to leaving the European Union with a deal that works for citizens and businesses. Nevertheless we need to plan for all scenarios. The oil and gas industry is important for the UK’s economy, energy security and jobs, and BEIS engages with the sector regularly to ensure that their concerns and any evidence is fed into the Government’s no deal planning/arrangements.

BEIS engagement with the upstream and downstream oil and gas sector in regard to EU-exit has included:

  • Publishing a technical notice on 13 September 2018 that offers guidance on “Running an oil or gas business if there’s no Brexit deal.
  • Organising an ongoing series of BEIS Oil & Gas EU Exit Sector Panels facilitating interaction among and between representatives from upstream and downstream trade associations, companies, BEIS and OGDs.
  • Providing regular email guidance updates on GOV.UK content relevant to the sector and requests for feedback from BEIS Oil and Gas Sector contacts.
  • Participating in bilateral interactions with trade associations and companies.

20th Nov 2018
What steps he is taking to support the offshore wind sector.

Offshore wind is already bringing high value jobs to coastal communities like Grimsby, for example, from the Triton Knoll project.

Hull has seen 1,000 direct jobs created from the £310 million investment in Siemens’ blade factory.

We are moving to advance discussions with the offshore wind sector around a Sector Deal that ensures higher levels of local content, UK jobs and investment in supply chains, like those in the hon Member’s constituency.

22nd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to support the development of the Able Marine Energy Park.

The development of ABLE is a commercial matter for the company.

26th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he plans to provide the full £557 million allocated for future Contract for Difference auctions.

On 11 October Government confirmed that up to £557 million would be made available for Contracts for Difference auctions for new generation projects using less established renewable technologies. Government also confirmed that the next Contracts for Difference auction is planned for spring 2019.

No decisions have yet been made regarding the timing of subsequent auctions, or the budget that will be made available in any particular auction.

26th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of setting a lower cap than £557 million on the funds allocated for future Contracts for Difference auctions.

On 11 October Government confirmed that up to £557 million would be made available for Contracts for Difference auctions for new generation projects using less established renewable technologies.

No decisions have yet been made regarding the budget that will be made available in any particular auction.

28th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the recommendation of the publication of the Julie Dean Self-Employment Review, what steps he has taken to calculate the effect new policies will have on the self-employed sector in the last 12 months.

The independent Matthew Taylor review on employment practices in a modern economy is considering the impact of non-standard working arrangements on employment status and employment rights, and as part of his review he has considered a range of available papers, including Julie Deane’s Review. That review will be reporting in the summer.

We have also announced we will be looking at parental benefits for the self-employed.

28th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the recommendation of the publication of the Julie Dean Self-Employment Review, what steps he has taken to review the equal treatment and recognition for the self-employed in the last 12 months.

The independent Matthew Taylor review on employment practices in a modern economy is considering the impact of non-standard working arrangements on employment status and employment rights, and as part of his review he has considered a range of available papers, including Julie Deane’s Review. That review will be reporting in the summer.

We have also announced we will be looking at parental benefits for the self-employed.

28th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken to tackle the use of self-employed people as agency workers by businesses.

A self-employed individual decides how they undertake work. This could include identifying a suitable role via an agency and it is for the work-seeker and agency to agree the type of contract that they will be engaged under.

Individuals seeking work through an agency, regardless of circumstances outside of the agency relationship, are protected by the Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulation 2003 and the Agency Worker Regulations 2010.

The Taylor review on modern employment practices is considering the impact of non-standard working arrangements on employment status and employment rights.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether Matthew Taylor's independent review into modern employment practices will consider whether the recent growth in the self-employed workforce represents a genuine wave of entrepreneurship and a desire for flexible working or a tool for businesses to hold down pay and restrict workers' rights.

The wide ranging independent Review of Modern Employment Practices is considering if the current definitions of employment status need to be updated to reflect new forms of working.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has commissioned new research looking specifically at the gig economy. The research will look at the number of individuals working in the gig economy in the UK and the motivations, experiences and skills of these individuals. The research should be ready in the Summer.

The Review is also considering to what extent the growth in non-standard forms of employment, including self-employment, undermines the reach of policies like the National Living Wage, pension auto-enrolment, sick pay, and holiday pay.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, following the independent self-employment review of February 2016, what steps he is taking to introduce a new adoption allowance for self-employed people.

The Government will consult in the summer on whether there is a case for greater parity in parental benefits between the employed and the self-employed.

Local Authorities may make a payment equivalent to Maternity Allowance in cases where adopters do not qualify for family related statutory pay because they are self-employed. This payment is discretionary and means-tested to ensure that resources are targeted at those adopters who need it most and is part of a package of post-adoption support.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, following the independent self-employment review of February 2016, whether he plans to introduce a legal definition of self-employment.

The independent Matthew Taylor review on employment practices in a modern economy is considering the impact of non-standard working arrangements on employment status and employment rights. That review will be reporting in the summer with recommendations which this Government will consider.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether Matthew Taylor's independent review into modern employment practices will consider whether people in self-employment should share the same characteristics of workers and should therefore be entitled to sick pay, annual leave and the national living wage.

The current employment framework means a person’s entitlement to employment rights is determined by their employment status. The wide ranging independent Review of Employment Practices in the Modern Economy is considering the impact of non-standard forms of employment on security, pay and rights.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether Matthew Taylor's independent review into modern employment practices will consider whether those moving from employee positions to self-employment are being driven by positive choice or through market forces.

The wide ranging independent Review of Employment Practices in the Modern Economy is considering how employment rules need to change to keep pace with changes in the way people work in the modern economy, including the rapid recent growth in self-employment and the shift in business practice from hiring to contracting.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has commissioned new research looking specifically at the gig economy. It will look at the number of individuals working in the gig economy in the UK and the motivations, experiences and skills of these individuals. The research should be ready in the Summer.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has not awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has had communications with iNHouse Communications Ltd in connection with any current commercial tender process.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has not had any communications with iNHouse Communications Ltd in connection with any current commercial tender process.

13th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether the Government plans to include provision in the Great Repeal Bill to transpose all EU case law affecting workers' rights into UK law.

The Government intends to bring all existing EU law in this area, including case law, under UK law at the point of exit through the Great Repeal Bill.

13th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if his Department will take steps to ensure that people employed by contractors at the 2022 Commonwealth Games are paid the Real Living Wage.

We are working with Games Partners to establish an Organising Committee for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. Once established, the committee will be primarily responsible for procuring goods and services and we will work with it and other Games Partners to agree appropriate policies including contractor pay.

12th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether UK businesses will be required to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (2016/679) after 25 May 2018.

Yes, all UK businesses together with all organisations that process personal data will be required to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) after 25th May 2018 and the UK's full data protection regime as set out in the Data Protection Bill. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) provides guidance and support to UK organisations and have already published a number of resources on the Commissioner's website (ico.org.uk) to help organisations prepare. The ICO has: launched a dedicated helpline service for smaller organisations; updated its 'SME toolkit' to reflect the requirements of the GDPR; simplified its "12-step" GDPR preparation guidance; and published tailored guidance for charities.

23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 9 March 2017 to Question 66060, on Digital Technology: Great Grimsby, which companies have committed to working in Great Grimsby as part of the Digital Skills Partnership.

We are currently developing the scope and membership of the Digital Skills Partnership.

1st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Government's digital strategy, which companies have committed to work in Great Grimsby as part of the Digital Skills Partnership.

Individuals and companies in Great Grimsby will be able to benefit from many of digital skills measures set out in the Government’s Digital Strategy. In addition the new Digital Skills Partnership will enable better coordination of opportunities and play a crucial role in ensuring that digital skills initiatives are targeted more effectively so that people in local areas such as Great Grimsby have the right skills and are able to better access digitally focused jobs. We are currently developing the scope and membership of the Digital Skills Partnership.

1st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the Government's digital strategy, what support will be provided to Great Grimsby from the digital skills programme; and if she will make a statement.

Individuals and companies in Great Grimsby will be able to benefit from many of digital skills measures set out in the Government’s Digital Strategy. In addition the new Digital Skills Partnership will enable better coordination of opportunities and play a crucial role in ensuring that digital skills initiatives are targeted more effectively so that people in local areas such as Great Grimsby have the right skills and are able to better access digitally focused jobs. We are currently developing the scope and membership of the Digital Skills Partnership.

19th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Department for Culture, Media & Sport has not awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of housing association residents have access to the internet at home.

The Government is on target to deliver access to superfast broadband for 95% of UK premises by December 2017, and to extend coverage beyond that as far as possible. As the Prime Minister announced last autumn, the government proposes that by the end of this parliament people should have a legal right to request access to a good level of broadband speed, no matter where they live.

The honourable member will be pleased to hear that in her Great Grimsby constituency, 96 per cent of homes and businesses can already access superfast broadband - and it is estimated that coverage will rise to98 per cent by the end of 2017. Additional funding sources, including the £129 million of gainshare funding that BT will return in response to the high levels of take-up being achieved, will allow coverage to be extended further in Great Grimsby and the rest of the area covered by the North Lincolnshire broadband project.

19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what proportion of local authority social housing residents have access to the internet at home.

The Government is on target to deliver access to superfast broadband for 95% of UK premises by December 2017, and to extend coverage beyond that as far as possible. As the Prime Minister announced last autumn, the government proposes that by the end of this parliament people should have a legal right to request access to a good level of broadband speed, no matter where they live.

The honourable member will be pleased to hear that in her Great Grimsby constituency, 96 per cent of homes and businesses can already access superfast broadband - and it is estimated that coverage will rise to98 per cent by the end of 2017. Additional funding sources, including the £129 million of gainshare funding that BT will return in response to the high levels of take-up being achieved, will allow coverage to be extended further in Great Grimsby and the rest of the area covered by the North Lincolnshire broadband project.

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if his Department will take steps to ensure that people employed by contractors at the 2022 Commonwealth Games are paid the Real Living Wage.

We are working with Games Partners to establish an Organising Committee for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. Once established, the committee will be primarily responsible for procuring goods and services and we will work with it and other Games Partners to agree appropriate policies including contractor pay.

23rd May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of funding for community learning services.

As a department, we are considering adult skills, which includes community learning, as part of the adult education budget and are looking carefully at further education funding. We recognise that some of the key areas of funding have not kept up with costs and we will continue to look carefully at these issues in preparation for the next Spending Review and in light of the recommendations of the Post-18 Review.

19th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the amount paid in business rates by (a) private, (b) volunteering and (c)independent childcare providers in the last 12 months.

Our Early Years National Funding Formula for three and four year olds contains an Area Cost Adjustment that includes a premises element based on rateable values. We have recently commissioned new research to provide us with further robust and detailed data of the costs of delivering childcare for under five year olds using a representative sample of early years providers.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
19th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many children are eligible for 30 hours free childcare in north each Lincolnshire.

The government set out in the 2015 Spending Review that nationally we expect 390,000 children to be eligible for 30 hours free childcare. This figure is derived from national survey data taken in January and is an average across the year. Estimates at a regional and local authority level are not available due to the relatively small population that we are estimating within sub national geographies.

We publish termly experimental statistics showing the number of children in a place. The most recent publication showed that 943 codes were issued in North East Lincolnshire and 974 children were in a 30 hours place in the summer term. The full publication – including a local authority level breakdown – is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/30-hours-free-childcare-summer-term-2018.

As we move in to the second year of delivery, we will continue to publish management information on the number of codes issued for 30 hours. This will be available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/30-hours-free-childcare-eligibility-codes-issued-and-validated – the most recent publication on 12 July shows that 573 codes have already been issued in North East Lincolnshire for the start of the next academic year.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
18th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the commercial sustainability of childcare providers in the (a) private, (b) volunteering and (c) independent early education sector.

By 2019-20 we will be spending around £6 billion on childcare support – a record amount. This includes around £1 billion extra a year to deliver 30 hours of free childcare and fund the increase in hourly rates that we introduced in April 2017.

Our average funding rates are based on the department’s ‘Review of Childcare Costs’ which was described as “thorough and wide ranging” by the National Audit Office. The review looked at both current and future cost pressures.

The latest Ofsted data from March 2018 showed that the number of non-domestic providers has remained stable. More than 340,000 children have benefitted from our 30 hours offer over its first year, and the vast majority of providers have increased the number of free hours available to parents.

We continue to monitor both the implementation of 30 hours and delivery costs. We have recently commissioned new research to provide us with further robust and detailed data of the costs of delivering childcare for under five-year-olds using a representative sample of early years providers.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
18th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of levels of Government funding for the 30 hours free childcare policy.

By 2019-20 we will be spending around £6 billion on childcare support – a record amount. This includes around £1 billion extra a year to deliver 30 hours of free childcare and fund the increase in hourly rates that we introduced in April 2017.

Our average funding rates are based on the department’s ‘Review of Childcare Costs’ which was described as “thorough and wide ranging” by the National Audit Office. The review looked at both current and future cost pressures.

The latest Ofsted data from March 2018 showed that the number of non-domestic providers has remained stable. More than 340,000 children have benefitted from our 30 hours offer over its first year, and the vast majority of providers have increased the number of free hours available to parents.

We continue to monitor both the implementation of 30 hours and delivery costs. We have recently commissioned new research to provide us with further robust and detailed data of the costs of delivering childcare for under five-year-olds using a representative sample of early years providers.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
18th Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps the Government is taking to improve the recruitment and retention of childcare professionals.

In March 2017 we published the Early Years Workforce Strategy which set out how government will work with the sector to help employers attract, retain and develop early years staff: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/596884/Workforce_strategy_02-03-2017.pdf.

We have made good progress in delivering the commitments in the strategy. This includes consulting on new criteria to strengthen level 2 qualifications to ensure practitioners have a firm foundation to progress up to level 3 and beyond. We have also taken steps to improve careers advice by upskilling Department for Work and Pensions job coaches to update their knowledge on careers in the sector, and have supported the work of the Education and Employers Charity and Tinies Childcare to promote the sector through their careers and engagement activity in schools. Through a voluntary and community sector grant we have also funded the establishment of an online directory with information on early years training and qualifications.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
17th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of Carillion entering liquidation on training and apprenticeships in the construction industry.

Following the announcement on the 15 January 2018 regarding the liquidation of Carillion, the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) has enacted robust contingency plans and identified the Construction Industry Training Board, (CITB) as the best placed alternative provider.

The ESFA contacted all affected apprentices on 15/01/18 to notify them of the situation and next steps. The Study Programme Learners were notified by letter on the 17/01/2018. Affected learners have been provided with the details of a dedicated mailbox: Carillion.Construction@education.gov.uk - where they can raise any issues or concerns.

The CITB is on the ESFA’s register of approved apprenticeship training providers; it delivers good quality provision, with a proven track record of delivering the specific frameworks and standards that current Carillion Apprentices are studying. CITB centres are geographically situated, within what is anticipated to be a reasonable travel time for the apprentices; and critically they have the capacity and capability to take on displaced apprentices and study programme learners. A dedicated team of 50 advisers and assessors in the CITB has been identified to support apprentices and work with them to identify new employers.

The CITB is utilising its existing employer contacts in the sector and the grant incentives it has available, in order to find and secure alternative employers for the apprentices to complete their frameworks or standards. Additionally, it is making direct contact with Carillion supply chain companies. CITB have reported that numerous employers have responded positively with offers of support.

CITB have contacted all affected learners to begin the transfer process, with a focus on minimising disruption to the learner and their learner journey. It has established a dedicated helpline to support those affected and has scheduled a series of workshops for learners, which will take place in the regions of the 11 Carillion Training Centres. Those workshops will provide advice on next steps and offer one to one support as required. The timings and locations of these events have been communicated to the learners through telephone calls, email and a comprehensive social media campaign.

Carillion has also issued communication to its learners, alerting them to the situation and reassuring them, that support is in place to ensure a swift transition.

The ESFA is meeting with CITB daily to monitor progress and resolve any issues.

17th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many building industry related training schemes and apprenticeships provided directly by Carillion and/or subcontracted companies have been terminated ahead of completion.

All Carillion apprentices are employed by Carillion Construction. The department is working with the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) to find alternative employers for those apprentices to complete their apprenticeships. No apprentices have had their employment contract with Carillion Construction terminated by the Insolvency Service.

Learners attending Carillion training centres, who are funded through a study programme will continue to receive training and this will be delivered by CITB or their partner colleges.

The CITB are utilising their existing employer contacts in the sector and the grant incentives they have available. To find and secure alternative employers for the apprentices to complete their frameworks or standards. Additionally, they are making direct contact with companies in Carillion’s supply chain. CITB have reported that numerous employers have responded positively with offers of support.

The CITB have contacted all affected learners to begin the transfer process, with a focus on minimising disruption to the learner and their learner journey. They have established a dedicated helpline to support those affected and have scheduled a series of workshops for learners, which will take place in the regions of the 11 Carillion Training Centres. These workshops will provide advice on next steps and offer 1 to 1 support as required. The timings and locations of these events have been communicated to the learners through telephone calls, email and a comprehensive social media campaign. Carillion are also actively encouraging their learners to attend these regional events.

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) are meeting with CITB daily to monitor progress and resolve issues.

The ESFA funds training providers for their delivery of apprenticeships in arrears, so payments made have been calculated based on the activity recorded by Carillion and returned to the ESFA in monthly Individual learner records.

Normal ESFA audit requirements will continue to apply and there must be evidence of participation in learning for funds to be earned. We will reconcile payments when the liquidator makes a final claim for training delivered by Carillion.

10th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when her Department plans to announce levels of government support for state-maintained nurseries for the years after 2019.

This government recognises that maintained nursery schools experience costs that other providers do not. That is why we are providing local councils with supplementary funding of around £60 million a year until the end 2019-20 at least, to enable them to maintain 2016-17 levels of nursery school funding. We are working closely with the sector and others on our plans for what happens beyond this, and we will set out next steps in due course.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department has had communications with iNHouse Communications Ltd in connection with any current commercial tender process.

This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Department for Education does not hold any commercial or financial records relating to iNHouse Communications Limited. An iNHouse licenced technology solution was used to provide a one-off conference call in 2015.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment her Department has made of the levels of self-harm among (a) boys and (b) girls in secondary schools.

Self-harm occurs in relation to a wide range of personal problems, emotional turmoil and psychiatric disorders, and is a serious concern. The government does not collect central data on cases of self-harm by school-age children, but the Department of Health is currently commissioning a new national prevalence survey for children and young people’s mental health which is due to report its findings in 2018.

Schools should take prompt action to deal with cases of self- harm. The Department has taken a range of actions to help them to build a whole-school approach to good mental wellbeing, which includes being informed about self-harm. We funded guidance and age-appropriate lesson plans on teaching mental health in PSHE – which covers teaching about self-harm. Training for teachers on self-harm is available through MindEd, a free online portal which has been developed to enable all adults working with children and young people learn more about specific mental health problems and how to support them. We have also revised and updated our blueprint for effective school-based counselling.

However, teachers are not mental health specialists and can need specialist support in deciding how to respond. We have contributed to a £3m joint pilot between schools and specialist mental health services, to help schools draw on specialist support for their pupils; where needed.

14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department has assessed the effect of experiencing domestic violence in the home on the educational attainment of pupils at primary and secondary school.

We know that educational outcomes for children in need or on child protection plans are generally worse than their peers.

This is published in the annual children in need census which is matched to the national pupil database to show attainment levels at both key stage 2 and key stage 4 for children in need, including those who have experienced domestic violence in the home (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/children-in-need-census).

This latest data is published on gov.uk within the ‘outcomes tables’ at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/characteristics-of-children-in-need-2014-to-2015.

Domestic violence is the most common factor identified in social worker assessments of children. We must continue to improve our understanding and response to this issue. The Home Office leads a wide-ranging cross-Government programme of work to address violence against women and girls, which includes domestic violence. In addition, on 7 July DfE announced up to £2.25 million in grant funding to VCS organisations over an 18 month period to help address key priorities on safeguarding, specifically including domestic violence.

While numbers of children for whom domestic violence is identified as a factor at assessment is published in the children in need census, attainment data for these children is not published and would only be available at disproportionate cost.

In the year ending 31 March 2015, there were around 45,500 children aged between 5 and 10 inclusive (primary school age1) and 31,200 aged between 11 and 16 inclusive (secondary school age1), recorded as having domestic violence identified as a factor at the end of their assessment by children’s social care. The purpose of an assessment is to gather information and evidence about a child’s developmental needs and the parents’ capacity to meet these needs within the context of the wider family and community. This information should be used to inform decisions about the help needed by the child.

Please note that this may not cover all children who have experienced domestic violence, but provides an estimate of those children that have been referred to children’s social care who have been assessed in the year and domestic violence was a factor identified. This information is collected within the children in need census (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/children-in-need-census). The latest information can be found in the ‘Characteristics of children in need’ statistical first release (https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/characteristics-of-children-in-need-2014-to-2015).

[1] Age calculated at 31 March 2015.

14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will estimate the number of children at primary and secondary school who have experienced domestic violence at home.

We know that educational outcomes for children in need or on child protection plans are generally worse than their peers.

This is published in the annual children in need census which is matched to the national pupil database to show attainment levels at both key stage 2 and key stage 4 for children in need, including those who have experienced domestic violence in the home (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/children-in-need-census).

This latest data is published on gov.uk within the ‘outcomes tables’ at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/characteristics-of-children-in-need-2014-to-2015.

Domestic violence is the most common factor identified in social worker assessments of children. We must continue to improve our understanding and response to this issue. The Home Office leads a wide-ranging cross-Government programme of work to address violence against women and girls, which includes domestic violence. In addition, on 7 July DfE announced up to £2.25 million in grant funding to VCS organisations over an 18 month period to help address key priorities on safeguarding, specifically including domestic violence.

While numbers of children for whom domestic violence is identified as a factor at assessment is published in the children in need census, attainment data for these children is not published and would only be available at disproportionate cost.

In the year ending 31 March 2015, there were around 45,500 children aged between 5 and 10 inclusive (primary school age1) and 31,200 aged between 11 and 16 inclusive (secondary school age1), recorded as having domestic violence identified as a factor at the end of their assessment by children’s social care. The purpose of an assessment is to gather information and evidence about a child’s developmental needs and the parents’ capacity to meet these needs within the context of the wider family and community. This information should be used to inform decisions about the help needed by the child.

Please note that this may not cover all children who have experienced domestic violence, but provides an estimate of those children that have been referred to children’s social care who have been assessed in the year and domestic violence was a factor identified. This information is collected within the children in need census (https://www.gov.uk/guidance/children-in-need-census). The latest information can be found in the ‘Characteristics of children in need’ statistical first release (https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/characteristics-of-children-in-need-2014-to-2015).

[1] Age calculated at 31 March 2015.

14th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment her Department has made of the effects of family evictions on student numbers at individual schools.

The Department has not made an assessment of the effects of family evictions on student numbers at individual schools.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment her Department has made of the performance of the National Allocation Scheme relating to initial teacher training as part of National Teaching School programme.

There is no ‘National Allocation Scheme’, but this year we have used recruitment controls for the purpose of recruitment to Initial Teacher Training (ITT). Information on these recruitment controls can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/initial-teacher-training-itt-recruitment-controls

In response to feedback from the sector from previous years, we changed the approach to initial teacher training (ITT) allocations for 2016-17 recruitment. The National College for Teaching and Leadership did not allocate a specific number of places to individual organisations for postgraduate ITT courses due to start in the 2016-17 academic year. Instead, eligible schools, School Centred Initial Teacher Training providers (SCITTs) and higher education institutions (HEIs) are able to recruit (subject to a limited number of controls) as many trainees as they feel they need until the overall system has recruited sufficient trainees.

The Census data which will be published online later in 2016 will indicate the number of trainees recruited by subject.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what information her Department holds on the geographical allocation of placements of teachers to initial teacher training schemes.

The table below shows the latest figures for postgraduate trainees by the location of the provider.

Number of postgraduate ITT trainees by region, academic year 2015 to 2016

Number of Trainees

North East

1,271

East Midlands

1,888

East of England

2,355

South West

2,440

Yorkshire and The Humber

2,807

West Midlands

3,187

North West

4,379

South East

4,473

London

4,969

Grand Total

27,769

Source: ITT Census 2015/16

1) Figures for 2015/16 were extracted on 2nd November 2015

2) Troops to Teachers are excluded

3) Excludes forecast trainees

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jul 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what progress her Department has made on regionalisation of the initial teacher training programme.

We are monitoring recruitment at a regional level in all subjects to ensure that the regional balance of initial teacher training (ITT) provision is maintained. We reserve the right to control recruitment in particular regions for all ITT routes and courses. It is important to maintain the regional balance of ITT provision and consequently we may use recruitment controls to prevent significant geographical variation in the distribution of provision compared to previous years. However, we will not operate with regional targets.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
4th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many state registered foster carers her Department estimates will be eligible for the Government's proposed free 30 hours of childcare.

Foster carers will be able to access the existing 15 hour early education entitlement for three-and four-year olds for both their foster children and their own children. In addition, two year olds who are looked after by a local council or have left care under a special guardianship order, child arrangements order or adoption order are also entitled to 15 hours of early education.

Foster carers will be able to access the extended entitlement for three-and four-year olds for their own children provided that they meet the minimum income requirement. This means that foster parents should be earning the equivalent to 16 hours a week at National Minimum or Living Wage and their income should not exceed £100,000. This includes employed and self-employed parents.

Since foster carers are separately funded for the care of foster children, they will not be able to access the extended entitlement for their foster children. This is in line with the treatment of foster carers under Tax-Free Childcare, tax credits and Universal Credit.

4th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many paid carers her Department estimates will be eligible for the Government's proposed free 30 hours of childcare.

The extended entitlement is intended to support working parents with the cost of childcare, enabling them to return to work or work additional hours if they wish to do so. Families where both parents work or one parent works in a single parent household will be eligible for these additional hours. In recognition of the particular challenges that paid carers can face in relation to childcare, the Childcare Bill allows for parents in certain circumstances to be regarded as being in work, for example, those parents who have caring responsibilities.

Households where one parent is working and one parent is being paid Carer’s Allowance or Universal Credit’s Carer Element will be able to access the extended entitlement provided the working parent meets the income eligibility requirements. This includes households where a parent is caring for their own three or four year old child where the child is in receipt of Disability Living Allowance or is certified blind.

In relation to single parents with a disabled child, where that parent meets the income eligibility requirements, they will also be able to access the extended entitlement. Parents who do not work will continue to receive Carer’s Allowance or Universal Credit.

It is also important to remember that all paid carers will be able to access the existing 15 hour early education entitlement for three and four year olds and the 15 hour early education entitlement for two year olds if they meet the eligibility criteria. More detail can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/help-with-childcare-costs/free-childcare-and-education-for-2-to-4-year-olds

The Department does not hold information on the number of households with three or four year old children where one partner (or the sole parent in a lone parent family) meets the income eligibility criteria and is in receipt of benefits relating to caring responsibilities.

4th Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many kinship carers her Department estimates will be eligible for the Government's proposed free 30 hours of childcare.

Kinship carers will be able to access the existing 15 hour early education entitlement for any three and four year old children in their care. In addition, two year olds who are looked after by a local council or have left care under a special guardianship order, child arrangements order or adoption order are entitled to 15 hours per week of early education.

In respect of the extended entitlement for three and four year olds, kinship carers who have parental responsibility for the child will be able to access the extended entitlement provided that they are earning the equivalent to 16 hours a week at National Minimum or Living Wage and their income does not exceed £100,000. This includes employed and self-employed kinship carers.

The Department does not hold information on the number of kinship carers who would meet the income eligibility criteria and who have three or four year old children.

8th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she plans to require secondary schools to publish an overview of their annual GCSE results.

Paragraph 5 of Schedule 4 of the School Information (England) Regulations 2008 requires maintained secondary schools to publish their most recent key stage 4 results on their websites.

In particular they must publish:

  • The percentage achieving 5 + A*-C GCSEs (or equivalent) including English and mathematics GCSEs;

  • the percentage achieving the English Baccalaureate; and

  • the percentage of pupils making expected progress.

Academies should also publish examination and assessment information as set out in their individual funding agreements.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
8th Sep 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many secondary schools chose not to publish an overview of their GCSE results for the school year 2014-15.

The information requested is not held by the Department for Education.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
1st May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which Government departments he has had discussions with on the Seafood 2040 Strategy.

In the coming months Defra will be discussing the Seafood 2040 recommendations with a range of Government bodies including Public Health England, the Environment Agency, the Sea Fish Industry Authority, the Marine Management Organisation, the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science and the Food Standards Agency.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
30th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department has taken to support fishing and fish processing communities as part of the Seafood 2040 Strategy.

Seafood 2040 is an industry led framework of 25 recommendations which sets out the vision for the seafood supply chain in England. The majority of the framework’s recommendations are for the industry to take an all-sector collaborative approach. A number of recommendations require Government action, which we are fully committed to delivering.

Defra is currently supporting the delivery of the framework’s first recommendation, which will see the creation of the Seafood Industry Leadership Group (SILG). SILG will take the lead in the delivery of Seafood 2040 in terms of developing more detailed plans and recommendations. Once SILG is established, it will drive forward the delivery of Seafood 2040.

Although SILG is not yet established, Defra fisheries teams are working closely with the industry, such as the aquaculture sector, to develop mechanisms which are relevant and fit for purpose for the management of fisheries and aquaculture.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
30th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department has taken to support the fish supply chain as part of the Seafood 2040 Strategy.

Seafood 2040 is an industry led framework of 25 recommendations which sets out the vision for the seafood supply chain in England. The majority of the framework’s recommendations are for the industry to take an all-sector collaborative approach. A number of recommendations require Government action, which we are fully committed to delivering.

Defra is currently supporting the delivery of the framework’s first recommendation, which will see the creation of the Seafood Industry Leadership Group (SILG). SILG will take the lead in the delivery of Seafood 2040 in terms of developing more detailed plans and recommendations. Once SILG is established, it will drive forward the delivery of Seafood 2040.

Although SILG is not yet established, Defra fisheries teams are working closely with the industry, such as the aquaculture sector, to develop mechanisms which are relevant and fit for purpose for the management of fisheries and aquaculture.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
11th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with his EU counterparts on changes to the level of tariffs on sugar beet imports in (a) 2017-18 and (b) 2018-19.

Ministers and officials have not had any discussions with EU counterparts on changes to the level of tariffs on sugar beet imports in 2017-18 and 2018-19. Because it is uneconomical to transport sugar beet long distances for processing, it is unlikely that any sugar beet has been imported into the EU in those years and so discussions on changes to the level of tariffs would not be expected.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
6th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what effect he expects the end of EU quotas on sugar beet production to have on domestic sugar prices.

We expect the price of sugar within the European Union (EU) to follow trends in world prices more closely following the removal of quotas on beet sugar production. While the United Kingdom remains within the EU domestic prices will be similarly affected. The latest EU sugar prices show a recent drop reflecting the fall in international prices and expectations of higher EU exports.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the Government plans to continue its membership of the European Fisheries Fund until it expires automatically in 2020.

In October 2016, the Chancellor confirmed that the Government will guarantee EU funding for structural and investment fund projects, including the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF), signed after the Autumn Statement and which continue after we have left the EU. Funding for projects will be honoured by the Government if they are good value for money and they are in line with domestic strategic priorities.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 20 October 2016 to Question 48853, what proportion of the total fishing trips were accompanied by a fisheries observer in (a) 2013, (b) 2014 and (c) 2015.

The proportion of fishing trips by UK vessels that were accompanied by an observer in the period from 2013 to 2015 is provided in the table below:

2013

2014

2015

Observed trips

610

755

595

Total trips

228,359

228,413

222,015

% observed trips

0.3%

0.3%

0.3%

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
13th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what EU fisheries legislation her Department plans to (a) replace and (b) preserve before the UK leaves the EU in order to prevent a regulatory deficit.

The Great Repeal Bill will place existing EU laws on a UK legal basis. Parliament will then be free to amend those laws as it sees fit. The Government is currently considering its approach to future fisheries policy once we leave the EU.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
30th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 20 October 2016 to Question 48853, what proportion of the total UK fishing trips have been electronically monitored using electronic monitoring equipment in each of the last three years.

The proportion of fishing trips undertaken by UK vessels using remote electronic monitoring (REM) equipment was less than one percent of the total fishing trips undertaken by UK vessels in each of the last three years from 2014 to 2016. The type of vessel using REM equipment were large capacity vessels, fishing off shore for fish stocks that were subject to quotas. In 2016 nearly 40 percent of UK landings of North Sea cod were made by vessels fully documenting their catch using REM equipment.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
30th Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department plans to set a target for the proportion of future UK fishing trips to be monitored either by a fisheries observer or monitored using electronic monitoring equipment.

Details of planned UK observer trips are set out in United Kingdom’s Work Plan for data collection in the fisheries and aquaculture sectors. The Work Plan can be found at the Gov.UK website. In England and Wales, 525 staff days per year are allocated to observer sampling with 1032 days for Scotland and 460 days for Northern Ireland.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that protection of the UK marine environment will not be affected as a result of the UK leaving the EU.

Until exit negotiations are concluded, the UK remains a full member of the European Union (EU) and all rights and obligations of EU membership remain in force.

The Prime Minister announced a Repeal Bill to convert EU law into domestic British law. This provides certainty for consumers, workers and businesses by maintaining existing laws.

In line with our manifesto, the Government is committed to ours being the first generation to leave the environment of England in a better state than we found it.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether it is her policy to maintain the principle of equal access to the UK's Exclusive Economic Zone after the UK leaves the EU; and what discussions she has had with her EU counterpart on EU vessels having access to that zone after the UK has left the EU.

We are currently assessing options to determine how the fishing resources within the UK Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) should be managed after we have left the EU.

Discussions on future fisheries management will form part of the Government's negotiations after Article 50 has been triggered.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions she has had with the UK's maritime neighbours on access to the UK Exclusive Economic Zone after the UK leaves the EU.

We are currently assessing options to determine how the fishing resources within the UK Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) should be managed after we have left the EU.

Discussions on future fisheries management will form part of the Government's negotiations after Article 50 has been triggered.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department has taken to determine the total allowable catch of the living resources in the UK's Exclusive Economic Zone after the UK leaves the EU.

Work is being undertaken to determine the Total Allowable Catch of fish in the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which elements of the EU Common Fisheries Policy it is her policy to replace after the UK leaves the EU.

We are currently analysing all EU fisheries legislation. No decision has yet been made on which elements of EU legislation governing the Common Fisheries Policy will be replaced after the UK leaves the EU.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which elements of the EU Common Fisheries Policy it is her policy to seek to retain after the UK leaves the EU.

We are currently analysing all EU fisheries legislation. No decision has yet been made on the extent to which the EU legislation governing the Common Fisheries Policy will be incorporated into domestic law.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that EU member states do not place restrictions on UK fisheries exports once the UK has left the EU.

Our new relationship with the EU should aim for the freest possible trade in goods and services between the UK and the EU through a new comprehensive, bold and ambitious free trade agreement. This needs to include trade in fish products, where the UK and EU have a mutual interest in ensuring continued high levels of market access in future.

The PM has made clear that the UK will be seeking a new customs agreement with the EU which allows the freest possible trade in goods and services. This agreement will cover fisheries products.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that EU member states do not place restrictions on UK fisheries exports once the UK has left the EU.

Our new relationship with the EU should aim for the freest possible trade in goods and services between the UK and the EU through a new comprehensive, bold and ambitious free trade agreement. This needs to include trade in fish products, where the UK and EU have a mutual interest in ensuring continued high levels of market access in future.

The PM has made clear that the UK will be seeking a new customs agreement with the EU which allows the freest possible trade in goods and services. This agreement will cover fisheries products.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the effect of the UK leaving the EU on the UK's seafood processing sector.

We are carrying out an assessment of the effect that leaving the EU will have on the UK’s seafood processing sector. The processing industry is involved in this work.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that the UK obtains exclusive fishing rights up to 200 miles from the UK coast.

When it leaves the EU, the UK will control access to fisheries in the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone and will manage those waters in accordance with international law, including the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has no record of communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd on its tendering system and has not awarded any commercial contract to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department is in communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd in relation to any ongoing commercial tender process.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has no record of communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd on its tendering system and has not awarded any commercial contract to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether Ministers of her Department have made representations to the companies involved in the ongoing dispute with Icelandic fishermen on the contribution of seafood imports to the British food processing sector.

British seafood companies have not sought a meeting with Ministers about this issue, nor have Ministers raised this issue with the Icelandic Ambassador and the Department has not modelled the impact of the strike on UK seafood businesses. The international trade section of Seafish, the UK-wide industry levy funded Non-Departmental Public Body, provides information to domestic seafood processors on overseas markets should they require assistance on identifying alternative sources of supply.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether Ministers of her Department have held discussions with British seafood processing firms on potential disruption to their resources caused by the Icelandic fishermen's strike.

British seafood companies have not sought a meeting with Ministers about this issue, nor have Ministers raised this issue with the Icelandic Ambassador and the Department has not modelled the impact of the strike on UK seafood businesses. The international trade section of Seafish, the UK-wide industry levy funded Non-Departmental Public Body, provides information to domestic seafood processors on overseas markets should they require assistance on identifying alternative sources of supply.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions Ministers of her Department have held with the Icelandic Ambassador on the Icelandic fishermen's strike.

British seafood companies have not sought a meeting with Ministers about this issue, nor have Ministers raised this issue with the Icelandic Ambassador and the Department has not modelled the impact of the strike on UK seafood businesses. The international trade section of Seafish, the UK-wide industry levy funded Non-Departmental Public Body, provides information to domestic seafood processors on overseas markets should they require assistance on identifying alternative sources of supply.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate her Department has made of the cost of the Icelandic fishermen's strike on British seafood processing businesses.

British seafood companies have not sought a meeting with Ministers about this issue, nor have Ministers raised this issue with the Icelandic Ambassador and the Department has not modelled the impact of the strike on UK seafood businesses. The international trade section of Seafish, the UK-wide industry levy funded Non-Departmental Public Body, provides information to domestic seafood processors on overseas markets should they require assistance on identifying alternative sources of supply.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department plans to offer assistance to British seafood processing firms in the event that the Icelandic fishermen's strike continues beyond 13 January 2017.

British seafood companies have not sought a meeting with Ministers about this issue, nor have Ministers raised this issue with the Icelandic Ambassador and the Department has not modelled the impact of the strike on UK seafood businesses. The international trade section of Seafish, the UK-wide industry levy funded Non-Departmental Public Body, provides information to domestic seafood processors on overseas markets should they require assistance on identifying alternative sources of supply.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
23rd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to support the growth of the red squirrel population.

The Government is committed to protecting and expanding red squirrel populations and tackling the threats that grey squirrels pose to them.

Since December 2014 the Forestry Commission has been undertaking a number of actions to protect red squirrels from the impact of grey squirrels resulting from an updated grey squirrel action plan for England. These have included measures to control grey squirrels in red squirrel areas, through forestry options under Countryside Stewardship and the previous English Woodland Grant Scheme.

Additionally, the Government participates in and supports Red Squirrels Northern England, a partnership project between the Red Squirrel Survival Trust, Natural England, the Forestry Commission and the Wildlife Trusts, which is helping to protect and expand the biggest population of red squirrels left in England.

We are also working together with a range of stakeholders under the UK Squirrel Accord, which aims to promote partnership working to increase public awareness and support for action to protect red squirrels and woodlands from grey squirrels.

22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the Government is doing to encourage supermarkets to act responsibly when sourcing and purchasing fish products.

Such matters fall primarily to the Non-Departmental Public Body Seafish, which is funded by an industry levy. Seafish has developed a ‘Risk Assessment for Sourcing Seafood’ (RASS), an online seafood sourcing tool, to help retailers assess the potential reputational risks of sourcing particular types of seafood. The primary objective is to support commercial seafood buyers by presenting up-to-date information on a comprehensive range of fisheries whose products are in the UK supply-chain, covering four components: stock, management, bycatch, and habitat. This year, RASS will be expanded through the addition of seafood social responsibility factors including crew welfare, human rights and slavery.

Seafish has also developed, and recently launched at the Houses of Parliament, the Responsible Fishing Scheme (RFS). The RFS is a voluntary vessel-based programme certifying high standards of crew welfare and responsible catching practices on fishing vessels. It is the only programme certifying crew welfare and responsible catching practices on vessels, and complements other fishery-based sustainability certifications. Such assurances are being increasingly sought by the UK market.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps the Government is taking to encourage young people to take up a career in the fishing industry.

Such matters fall primarily to the Non-Departmental Public Body Seafish, which is funded by an industry levy. Seafish launched a three-week ‘Introduction to Commercial Fishing’ course in September 2011 to help recruit and train new entrants to the fishing industry. Drawing on funding from the European Fisheries Fund (EFF), Seafish has delivered 84 courses throughout the UK and trained 741 new entrants.

Seafish has also developed a one-year (minimum) ‘Apprenticeship in Sea Fishing’ programme to attract new entrants looking for a career in commercial fishing. It has been delivered in England by the Whitby & District Fishing Industry School, and is now being offered as a Modern Apprenticeship in Scotland by the NAFC Marine Centre in Shetland and the North East Scotland College in Peterhead. Between 1 January 2013 and 31 December 2015 51 apprentices registered for, and 44 completed, the programme. Moreover, Seafish has developed ‘Fish and Shellfish Apprenticeships’ to help the onshore sectors of the seafood industry recruit new high-calibre entrants.

In addition, Seafish created ‘The World is Your Oyster’, a recruitment campaign designed to showcase the diverse employment opportunities and career prospects in the seafood and fishing industries. The campaign launched in November last year, and is targeted at school leavers, youngsters and those considering a career change. Further information can be found on the Seafish website.

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) has provided financial support via the EFF to Fisheries Local Action Groups for schemes which include apprenticeships and training for the fishing industry. Funds paid for such schemes under EFF with MMO matched funding are in the region of £208,829. Support for training programmes and apprenticeships will continue to be available under the European Maritime Fisheries Fund, replacing the EFF, which opened on 18 January.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
22nd Feb 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps the Government is taking to promote seafood as a healthy British food.

Such matters fall primarily to the Non-Departmental Public Body Seafish, which is funded by an industry levy. Seafish has developed ‘Fish is the Dish’, an online campaign which encourages UK consumers to eat more seafood for a healthier diet. The campaign’s digital channels target consumers with health messaging about the nutritional benefits of seafood, including zinc, selenium, iron, omega-3 and vitamin D. The campaign highlights how more seafood can easily be incorporated into the diet.

Seafish’s ‘#superfishoil’ campaign champions seafood as the best source of omega-3, using innovative and creative communications to raise awareness of seafood’s unique nutritional benefits. This work is supported by Heart Research UK, as well as the wider seafood industry, which has access to a marketing toolkit to help promote the health benefits of eating seafood.

Health also plays an important part in the annual ‘Seafood Week’ campaign, which generates extensive cross-supply chain support. A new Seafish project looking at the nutritional make-up of fish and chips will help further inform healthy eating choices.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether he discussed the future of the UK fishing industry with the Norwegian Foreign Minister during his recent visit to the UK.

We have already started a wide-ranging programme of engagement in order to build a national consensus, listening to organisations, institutions and companies in as many sectors as possible to establish their priorities and understand their concerns, and also to hear what they think the solutions could be. These discussions will inform our negotiating position; it would not be in the national interest to give a running commentary.

7th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, whether he had discussions on the potential effect of tariffs on the seafood trade between Britain and Norway with the Norwegian Foreign Minister during his recent visit to the UK.

The Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union met with the Norwegian Foreign Minister on 5 December. They discussed our work towards an orderly withdrawal of the UK from the EU.

1st Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of zero per cent import tariffs on gasoline on the UK gasoline industry in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.

If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the UK will implement a temporary tariff: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-temporary-rates-of-customs-duty-on-imports-after-eu-exit.

We expect that the EU’s most favoured nation (MFN) tariff regime will apply to UK exports in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal, and there is no indication that the EU will modify its tariff regime as a result of our exit.

This decision seeks to ensure that UK importers and consumers do not face potential disruption or price rises that a fully reciprocal tariff policy would create.

7th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, whether he discussed the future of the UK fishing industry with the Norwegian Foreign Minister during his recent visit to the UK.

I refer the hon Member for Great Grimsby to the answer I gave her on 12 December, UIN: 56446.
Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, whether he held discussions on the potential effect of tariffs on the seafood trade between Britain and Norway with the Norwegian Foreign Minister during his recent visit to the UK.

My Rt hon Friend the Secretary of State discussed a range of topics with the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs on his recent visit. It included the UK’s Commitments at the World Trade Organization and how the UK and Norway can continue to build our trade relationship. Fisheries and seafood trade work is led by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
2nd Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much the DVLA has refunded to motorists who sold their cars and claimed back the unused vehicle tax on those cars since 2014.

Since 1 October 2014, vehicle excise duty automatically ends when the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) has been notified that a vehicle has been sold, transferred into the motor trade, scrapped, exported, stolen or a statutory off road notification is made. When the DVLA is notified of any of these events, the registered keeper automatically receives a refund of the full months remaining on their vehicle excise duty. The table below shows all vehicle excise duty refunds since 2014:

Year

VED Refunds £millions

2018/19

365

2017/18

352

2016/17

338

2015/16

357

2014/15

216

6th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to improve assisted travel for disabled people across public transport.

The Government’s Inclusive Transport Strategy, published in July 2018, summarises the various steps the Department is taking to make it easier for disabled people to travel by public transport. Among the commitments in the Strategy are that in 2019, the Department will launch a major campaign in England to raise awareness of disabled passengers’ rights when using the transport system and to promote a supportive travelling experience for disabled people. The Department will also develop and launch an accreditation scheme for transport operators to recognise those which show leadership in improving disabled passengers’ experiences, including through providing appropriate disability awareness training.

The Department will also work closely with the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) to ensure the successful roll-out of a new Passenger Assist application to enable customers to book assistance through a single click. The RDG plan a full roll-out across the rail network from January 2020.

6th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will accompany a person with disabilities on public transport in order to gain first-hand experience of the difficulties disabled people can face when accessing public transport.

The Department is committed to ensuring that disabled people have the same access to transport and opportunities to travel as everyone else. Throughout my time as the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State responsible for this matter, I have regularly met with disability organisations and disabled people to gain a better understanding of the barriers that can make travel by public transport more difficult than it should be. These meetings, and the Department’s engagement with a wide range of disability groups and other stakeholders, helped shape the Government’s Inclusive Transport Strategy, which was published in July 2018.

10th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when the Government plans to bring forward legislative proposals on drones.

In May this year, the Government amended the Air Navigation Order to restrict drones from flying above 400ft and within 1km of an airport boundary. These measures came into effect in July this year. The amendments also introduced the registration of all drone operators with drones of 250g and over, as well as competency tests for remote pilots of drones of 250g and over. These will come into effect in November 2019.

The Government is currently consulting on measures to be included in a draft Drones Bill such as greater police powers against the misuse of drones and proposals for regulating and mandating the use of safety ‘apps’ and counter-drone technology. A draft Drones Bill is due to be published shortly.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
30th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department has taken to support logistics and transportation infrastructure around fish landing ports as part of the Seafood 2040 Strategy.

The Department for Transport has recently published a port connectivity study (PCS):

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/better-connections-to-ports-to-help-business-growth.

The PCS sets out the wider economic importance of ports, and how effective, efficient movement of freight to and from ports supports many other parts of the economy, including the logistics sector and port based industries. Such improved connectivity can boost productivity, lower costs and provide access to international markets, and the study identified significant existing funding for road and rail access to ports, as well as how port connectivity is being factored into future investment planning. The principles, connectivity benefits, and transport infrastructure projects detailed in the PCS are applicable to fish handling ports as they are other ports. Seafood 2040 is an industry led strategy. The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs will work with the industry through Seafish and the proposed Seafood Industry Leadership Group to deliver the those recommendations to which the Government has made a commitment.

19th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

My Department has not awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd. In the last five years.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what his Department's policy is on ensuring access to toilets at railway stations.

It is for Station Operators to meet the needs of their passengers and customers, which includes facilities at stations such as toilets.

As part of the franchise process station users are encouraged to express their views, including on station facilities, through the public consultation. The Department, as the franchise specifying authority, can indicate that bidders should include plans that respond to the outcome of the consultation.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what contractual obligations there are on train operators to provide access to toilets on their trains.

It is for Train Operators to define the requirements of the rail carriages they procure. The Department has set out its aspirations regarding on-board facilities in its Rolling Stock Perspective published in July 2015.

2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the current shortage of Certificate of Professional Competence qualified drivers is for the logistics industry; and what the shortage forecast for such drivers is expected to be in (a) 2015-16, (b) 2016-17 and (c) 2017-18.

Government data (the Office of National Statistics Labour Force Survey) estimates there are 299,000 large goods vehicle drivers, up 40,000 on 2013. Other people require Certificates of Professional Competence to drive large goods vehicles as part of other jobs or to drive public service vehicles. The Department for Transport has not estimated or forecast the shortage of large goods vehicle drivers, although it recognises there is a significant shortage and is aware of industry estimates of its size.


Prior to the introduction of the Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (Driver CPC) the department has worked closely with stakeholders who provided estimates of how many Driver Qualification Cards (DQCs) it was necessary to issue to professional drivers in order to ensure continuity of service. Estimates provided ranged from 500,000 to 750,000. The department has now issued over 900,000 DQCs and continues to work with the logistics sector’s representative groups to support them in creating industry-led solutions to any potential shortage of professional drivers.

2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effect of the cost of acquiring a Certificate in Professional Competence on access to such certificates for young people.

The Department for Transport has not made any assessments on the effect of the cost of acquiring a Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC) on access to such Certificates for young people.


In order to allow newly qualified drivers to gain experience, the department allows those who have passed the theory test (module one) and practical driving test (module three) to enrol on an approved National Vocational Training (NVT) programme and defer taking the Driver CPC theory and practical tests. This allows a driver to work professionally for up to 12 months whilst working towards a Driver CPC qualification.



2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the effect on businesses in the Humber area of the shortage of Certificate of Professional Competence qualified drivers.

The Department for Transport has not made any assessment on the economic effect of a potential driver shortage specific to the Humber area.


2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the economic cost of the shortage of Certificate of Professional Competence qualified drivers.

The Department for Transport has not made an estimate on the economic effect of a potential driver shortage. It is aware of extensive reports about pressures on wages, the recruitment of drivers from outside the UK and delayed deliveries.

15th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps she is taking to support people affected by the potential closure of the Novartis plant in North East Lincolnshire.

DWP offer a Rapid Response Service (RRS). This is a redundancy service designed to give support and advice to employers and their employees when faced with the prospect of redundancy. It is coordinated nationally by the National Employer and Partnership Team (NEPT) and is managed by Jobcentre Plus. Each Jobcentre Plus district deploy resources according to the situation and the requirements of the workforce. This service is available to be deployed in Grimsby and surrounding area should Novartis require support from Jobcentre Plus. The RRS is delivered in partnership with a range of national and local partners, including National Careers Service and local service providers.

The range of support available from Jobcentre Plus and partners may include:

  • Information advice and guidance.
  • Connecting people to jobs in the labour market.
  • Help with job search including CV writing, interview skills, where to find jobs and
    how to apply for them.
  • Help to identify transferable skills and skills gaps (linked to the local labour
    market).
  • Training to update skills, learn new ones and gain industry recognised
    certification that will improve employability.
  • Help to overcome barriers to attending training or securing a job or
    self-employment such as child care costs, necessary tools, work clothes, travel
    costs etc.
  • On-site presentations to those affected.
  • Jobs Fairs and Job Clubs where appropriate.
Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
14th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the trends in the level of unemployment in Great Grimsby constituency.

The number of people claiming unemployment-related benefits in Great Grimsby has fallen by 45% in the last six years and stands at 3,406 as at February 2019.

Across the local authority of North East Lincolnshire, and the unemployment rate for North East Lincolnshire has fallen from 11.5% in 2010 to 6.4% in 2018.

The rate of unemployment across the UK is at its lowest since 1974.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
14th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department is taking to reduce the level of unemployment in Great Grimsby constituency.

Since 2010, the Office for National Statistics’ (ONS) Labour Force Survey data shows that the level and rate of unemployment has fallen in every region and country of the UK.

This Government is committed to providing targeted support for people so that everyone, no matter what their start in life, is given the very best chance of getting into work.

Jobcentre Plus is geared-up to offer advice to those claiming welfare benefits. Through Jobcentre Plus, individuals can get advice on finding a job; help with retraining or skills advice, CV and job applications; and access to thousands of new vacancies we record every day. They can also access a range of tailored opportunities to improve their likelihood of entering or re-entering the labour market, including demand-led training for higher skilled jobs in specific sectors.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
14th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of universal credit in assisting claimants into sustainable employment in Great Grimsby constituency.

The Universal Credit Full Service Claimant Survey shows that 9 months into a Universal Credit claim, 40% of claimants are working for an employer in a paid role, as opposed to only 23% at the start of their claim. People on Universal Credit spend around 50% more time looking for a job than they did under JSA and 86% of people on Universal Credit were actively looking to increase their hours, compared to just 38% of people on JSA. This is because they can take on more hours without losing their benefit. We cannot break this information down to constituency level.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
14th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department is taking to ensure that claimants of universal credit in North East Lincolnshire remain in sustainable employment when they find work.

The Universal Credit Full Service Claimant Survey, published in June 2018, shows that 9 months into a Universal Credit claim, 40% of claimants are working for an employer in a paid role, as opposed to only 23% at the start of their claim. Universal Credit provides more help with childcare costs, a dedicated Work Coach and scraps the 16-hour ‘cliff edge’, removing barriers to work and progressing in work. The support provided by Work Coaches need not stop when the claimant finds a job, unlike the legacy benefit system. Claimants can access support from a Work Coach to help them progress their earnings and to ensure they remain in sustainable employment.

In her speech on 9 May 2019, the Secretary of State announced work which will develop support for Jobcentre Plus staff to enable them to have conversations with employers about the range of things that employers can consider to support employees to progress.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
17th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many kinship carers that applied for universal credit were exempt from the two child limit in 2017-18; and what proportion of those carers were affected by the benefit cap.

The number of exemptions to the policy to provide support for a maximum of two children for kinship carers up to 2 April 2018 can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-tax-credit-and-universal-credit-claimants-statistics-related-to-the-policy-to-provide-support-for-a-maximum-of-2-children-april-2018

The Government does not hold information about how many kinship carers were affected by the Benefit Cap.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
17th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what (a) training and (b)guidance has been provided to staff in her Department on the variation in the two child limit exemption for kinship carers and adopters applying for (i) child tax credit and (ii) universal credit.

We have provided comprehensive training for all of our Work Coaches to ensure that they can effectively apply the variation in two child limit exemptions. The guidance which supplements this training was updated on 28/11/18 and is published in the House of Commons Library is called “UC Full Service Guidance ‘Additional Amounts for Children’”.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
22nd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average proportion of a person's net income is paid out in child maintenance by people in (a) employment and (b) self-employment.

We have made no estimate of the average proportion of net income paid out in Child Maintenance. Child Maintenance is calculated using a set percentage of a Paying Parent’s gross income. The percentages used are the same for those employed or self-employed.

The calculation process and rates are set out in:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-we-work-out-child-maintenance

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
15th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the causes of the changes in the number of claimants aged between 16 and 64 in Great Grimsby constituency between April 2017 and April 2018.

The number of unemployment related benefit claimants aged 16 and over in the Great Grimsby constituency was 2,885 as of April 2018 – up by 270 since April 2017 but down by 1,475 since April 2010.

The claimant count is currently designated as an experimental statistic by the Office for National Statistics as a result of the roll out of Universal Credit. Universal Credit full service expands the ‘Searching for Work’ conditionality group to cover a wider group of claimants, to encourage these claimants into work or to work more. This policy decision has the effect of bringing additional people into the claimant count compared to the pre-Universal Credit system and the number of people recorded as being on the Claimant Count is therefore likely to rise. DWP have published a consultation on developing a new measure for labour market performance over time. This can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/proposals-for-a-new-statistical-series-to-count-unemployed-claimants

Using estimates from the Labour Force Survey, the unemployment rate in the Yorkshire and Humber region is at 4.6% for the period January to March 2018 - down 4.9 percentage points since the period February to April 2010. The number of people in employment is 2.59 million, up 211,000 since 2010.

This is consistent with the continuing improvements in the wider economy. The UK’s unemployment rate is currently 4.2% and has not been lower since 1975. The employment rate in the UK stands at a record high of 75.6% and there are a near record 806,000 vacancies throughout the economy.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
15th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the causes of the changes in the number of claimants aged between 18 and 24 in Great Grimsby constituency between April 2017 and April 2018.

The number of unemployment related benefit claimants aged 18-24 in the Great Grimsby constituency was 670 as of April 2018 – up by 30 since April 2017 but down by 690 since April 2010.

The claimant count is currently designated as an experimental statistic by the Office for National Statistics as a result of the roll out of Universal Credit. Universal Credit full service expands the ‘Searching for Work’ conditionality group to cover a wider group of claimants, to encourage these claimants into work or to work more. This policy decision has the effect of bringing additional people into the claimant count compared to the pre-Universal Credit system and the number of people recorded as being on the Claimant Count is therefore likely to rise. DWP have published a consultation on developing a new measure for labour market performance over time. this can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/proposals-for-a-new-statistical-series-to-count-unemployed-claimants

Using estimates from the Labour Force Survey, the unemployment rate in the Yorkshire and Humber region is at 4.6% for period January to March 2018 - down 4.9 percentage points since the period February to April 2010. The number of people in employment is 2.59 million, up 211,000 since 2010.

This is consistent with the continuing improvements in the wider economy. The UK’s unemployment rate is currently 4.2% and has not been lower since 1975. The employment rate in the UK stands at a record high of 75.6% and there are a near record 806,000 vacancies throughout the economy.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what progress she has made on contact with claimants of Support for Mortgage Interest since the publication of conversion of support for mortgage interest from a benefit into a loan: claimant communication and intention to take up a loan on 23 March 2018.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave on 28 March 2018 to Question 134890 (https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2018-03-28/134890/).

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the effect on the credit rating of claimants of Support for Mortgage Interest of that benefit being converted into a loan.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave on 12 March 2018 to Question 131365 (https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2018-03-06/131365/).

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department has taken to contact claimants of Support for Mortgage Interest that do not have a telephone number.

We write to those SMI claimants for whom we do not hold a phone number, requesting they contact us to give a friend or relative’s phone number. We follow this up with a reminder letter if we do not receive a response, and advise that Serco offer a call booking service to allow claimants to schedule a call about the SMI loan.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many (a) failed and (b) unsuccessful contacts with claimants of Support for Mortgage Interest there have been.

Serco have made over 436,000 calls to SMI claimants, with approximately 307,000 successful contacts. Of the 129,000 unsuccessful contacts, 9,000 were where the telephone number was unobtainable. In these cases claimants are sent a letter, and a reminder letter where they do not reply, to the address where they are claiming benefit, asking them to contact Serco on the telephone number provided.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claimants of Support for Mortgage Interests are part of the home ownership for people with long-term disabilities scheme.

All existing SMI claimants including the representatives of HOLD claimants have been contacted about SMI loans. Data on the number of HOLD claimants who have taken up the loan offer is not available.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
14th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether she has revised the assumptions set out on page 8 of the impact assessment on Converting support for mortgage interest from a benefit into a loan that (a) 5 per cent of eligible working age claimants and (b) 8 per cent of eligible pension age claimants will not claim support for mortgage interest when it is converted into a loan.

Assumptions, including the take up rate, used to forecast annual payments in loans for Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) loans will be reviewed following the introduction of the loan.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to regulate trampoline parks.

Businesses running trampoline parks have legal duties under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and associated regulations to protect the health and safety of their employees and customers. The legal duties are enforced by local authorities. If a local authority has evidence of poor health and safety performance at a particular trampoline park, it has the powers to investigate and take appropriate enforcement action to ensure compliance with the law.

A British Standard, PAS 5000:2017 ‘Specification for the construction and operation of a fixed indoor trampoline park’ provides advice to trampoline park operators on how to comply with their legal duties.

7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many recipients of Support for Mortgage Interest have applied for a loan since the introduction of that loan.

As of week commencing 5th March 2018, over 10,100 claimants have stated their intention to take up the offer of an SMI loan. Around 109,000 claimants have been contacted and approximately 16,000 are considering their options.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of take-up for the new loan product that will replace Support for Mortgage Interest in April 2018 is people currently in receipt of that benefit.

SMI loans will be available to all claimants who currently qualify for SMI as a benefit. The level of support available will be calculated in the same way as under the current system and claimants and mortgage lenders will not see any difference in the payments they receive. Claimants may change their mind whether to take or decline a loan at any time.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 20 February 2018 to Question 127702, whether all of the recipients of Support for Mortgage Interest have now been contacted regarding the cessation of that benefit.

Serco have contacted approximately 95% of existing SMI claimants. The remaining 5% of cases we have so far been unable to refer to Serco for a variety of reasons, such as the need to obtain a telephone number for the claimant. The majority of this group has however been asked to provide the information required, and the reason it is needed including the change of SMI from a benefit to a loan.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, which method her Department used to estimate the number of recipients of Support for Mortgage Interest who have access to funds and therefore would not need to use the new loan system.

Information on the Department’s estimate of current SMI recipients who have access to funds and therefore would not need to use the new loan system is available here:

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukia/2017/117/pdfs/ukia_20170117_en.pdf

The estimate is based on analysis of the Family Resources Survey on the number of mortgage holders not in employment who receive help with mortgage payments e.g. from friends or relatives.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate her Department has made of the effectiveness of Serco in informing Support for Mortgage Interest recipients about the transition to loans; what estimate her Department has made of the number of people not yet informed on that transition; and what representations her Department has received on the adequacy of the service provided by Serco in providing comprehensive information on that transition.

Serco have contacted approximately 95% of existing SMI claimants. The remaining 5% of cases we have so far been unable to refer to Serco for a variety of reasons, such as the need to obtain a telephone number for the claimant. The majority of this group has however been asked to provide the information required, and the reason it is needed including the change of SMI from a benefit to a loan. Serco have met all of the service levels included in the contract and we have received a minimal number of complaints about the service.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the value is of Serco's contract to undertake Support for Mortgage Interest replacement loans work; and what terms that contract contains on performance-related pay.

Serco have been appointed as an external supplier to offer information (as opposed to advice) to new and existing SMI customers. The contract was awarded following an Open competition and is valued at £4.5 million. Payment is related to the number of customer contacts completed. There are no payments linked to call outcome or to customer decision on whether to take out a loan.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
26th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what date her Department estimates that the processing of SMI replacement loans claims by Serco will be completed.

Serco do not undertake SMI loan processing being contracted solely to provide information to claimants in the form of letters, leaflets and telephone ‘Informed Discussions’. These Informed Discussions will continue to be offered to new applicants who are eligible for the SMI loan.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
26th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate her Department has made of Serco’s rate of processing SMI replacement loan applications in the last 12 months.

Serco do not undertake SMI loan processing being contracted solely to provide information to claimants in the form of letters, leaflets and telephone ‘Informed Discussions’. Serco have made 338,000 call attempts, with 275,000 being successful contacts since July 2017.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the potential effect of changing support for mortgage interest to a loan on the take-up of other housing benefits.

The Department does not anticipate any effect on take-up of other housing benefits as a result of this change. Claimants will be eligible for exactly the same level of financial support as they receive now. Loans will not be recovered until the property is sold and then only to the extent that there is sufficient equity available.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many households in receipt of support for mortgage interest had a property repossessed in each year since 2010.

The Department does not hold the data requested.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate her Department has made of the number of people who participate in the Home Ownership for people with Long-term Disabilities scheme who will be affected by the replacement of support for mortgage interest with a loan.

The Department does not hold the data requested.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
19th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will set out the number of claimants of support for mortgage interest in each region of England and Wales in the most recent 12-month period for which figures are available.

The table below provides forecasts of the caseload for Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) in 2017/18 by region.

Region

Estimated SMI caseload (000s)

North East

6

North West

16

Yorkshire and Humberside

9

East Midlands

8

West Midlands

11

East

10

London

12

South East

12

South West

8

Wales

7

Scotland

12

Total

110

Notes:

  • Figures have been rounded to the nearest 1,000 cases and may not sum due to rounding.
  • DWP does not hold a single source of data on SMI claims to analyse. Analysis of regional SMI caseloads are based on DWP’s Quarterly Statistical Extract (QSE) data. QSE is a quarterly 5 per cent sample of Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), Income Support (IS) and Pension Credit (PC) claimants. Quality assured data at regional level is not available for ESA or UC claimants receiving SMI. In the absence of data the regional breakdown of ESA claimants has been assumed to be the same as the JSA, IS and PC caseload. Less than 1% of SMI claimants are estimated to claim UC in 2017/18.
  • Estimates use QSE data over four quarters up to May 2017 and are calibrated to the 2017/18 SMI caseload forecast published in the Benefit Expenditure and Caseload Tables.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
10th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much her Department spent on housing benefit for people living in refuge accommodation in (a) 2016-17 and (b) 2015-16.

The information requested is not available.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
13th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate his Department has made of the total (a) weekly and (b) annual housing benefit spend for claimants living within refuge accommodation.

The information requested is not available.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
5th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether student loans are classed as complete income for the purposes of calculating universal credit eligibility.

When Universal Credit calculates eligibility, it takes into account the elements of student loans or grants which provide for the student’s basic maintenance. Universal Credit disregards elements paid for specific additional costs the student has, such as tuition or books. Once the total annual loan is calculated, Universal Credit applies a flat rate monthly disregard of £110 whilst the claimant remains a student.

12th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what plans he has to undertake an equalities impact assessment of the proposed cap on housing benefit for those in supported housing.

The Department has undertaken an Equality Assessment on the proposal to cap housing benefit at the Local Housing Allowance rates for people in supported housing.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
12th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many kinship carers have been refused the Sure Start maternity grant for their baby because they are already raising other children in their household.

The Department for Work and Pensions does not collect this data.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether his Department has undertaken an equalities impact assessment of the proposed cap to housing benefit for people in supported housing.

The Department has undertaken an Equality Assessment on the proposal to cap housing benefit at the Local Housing Allowance rates for people in supported housing.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps he is taking to ensure the commemoration of Workers' Memorial Day in the UK.

The Government continues to recognise Workers’ Memorial Day. It is a poignant reminder of why it is vital to manage workplace health and safety risks in a robust and proportionate way.

The Health and Safety Executive as the national regulator will, as in previous years, work with recognised unions and other organisations to formulate appropriate commemorative activity. Typically this includes wreath laying ceremonies at key locations and observation of a minute’s silence.

Penny Mordaunt
Paymaster General
23rd Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, following the independent self-employment review of February 2016, what steps he is taking to enhance the level of maternity allowance for self-employed people.

The Government has recently announced that it will consult in the summer on whether there is a case for greater parity in parental benefits between the employed and the self-employed. We are in the process of considering the scope of the consultation, which will include Maternity Allowance.

22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many recipients of universal credit have a managed payment to landlord in Great Grimsby.

This information is not currently available.

22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps he is taking to ensure that recipients of universal credit do not fall into rent arrears while waiting to receive payments.

Arrears are an important and complex issue. There are many factors at play and arrears can arise not only because of failure to pay rent but also through the charging policies of landlords that can create “book” arrears from the outset of a tenancy. Distinguishing between these two effects is not straightforward and we are undertaking work to investigate the issue of rent arrears in Universal Credit, aiming to understand the true level of rent arrears and what is causing them. It is also important to note that many people are coming into Universal Credit with pre-existing arrears. For example, recent research by the National Federation of ALMOs showed that over three-quarters of their tenants were already behind with their rent before their Universal Credit claim started.

We have taken a number of steps to support claimants from falling into arrears:

First, improving our processes for verifying housing costs so that claimants get their housing costs taken into account in their payments at the end of the first assessment period. We have centralised and streamlined the management of emails from Social Rented Sector Landlords to speed up the verification process and we continue to improve the support given to our work coaches so that they can identify and resolve housing issues as they arise in jobcentres.

Secondly, whilst Universal Credit promotes personal responsibility and expects the majority of tenants to manage their finances, including their own housing cost, we recognise that some people may need help with this, so we can provide budgeting advice and benefit advances if appropriate. Claimants can apply for an advance of up to 50 per cent of their indicative award (including housing costs). Once people have successfully transferred to Universal Credit direct payments, they do generally succeed in managing their finances effectively, paying their rent and reducing their arrears. In Universal Credit we increased the recovery rate for rent arrears, from a maximum of 5%, to 20% and our research shows that after four months, the proportion of UC claimants who were in arrears at the start of their claim, fell by a third.

Thirdly, we recognise that for some people, payment of rent is best made direct to the landlord and we have speeded up the process for Social Rented Sector landlords so that they can now apply for them at the same time as they verify rent and we have provided guidance to our work coaches to help them identify circumstances in which this would be appropriate.

We continue to work closely with landlords, Local Authorities and other organisations to identify further improvements to ensure claimants are fully supported.

22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many benefit sanctions have been applied to recipients of universal credit in Great Grimsby constituency in each of the last 12 months for which figures are available.

The information requested is not currently available.

The Department published its strategy for releasing official statistics on benefit sanctions, including Universal Credit (UC) in April 2016. As outlined in the strategy, officials are currently developing the data for UC sanctions and will only release information once the necessary quality assurance work has taken place. These statistics will be published in accordance with the relevant protocols in the Code of Practice for official statistics.

Benefit Sanctions official statistics and the Departments release strategy can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/jobseekers-allowance-sanctions

22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps he is taking to reduce the length of time it takes for working families to receive universal credit payments.

The Universal Credit assessment period and payment structure is a fundamental part of the design; it helps reduce welfare dependency and support people into employment by mirroring the world of work, where 75% of people are paid monthly. It is not possible to award a Universal Credit payment as soon as eligibility is determined.

We have a number of safeguards in place to help claimants transition to Universal Credit including Advances and Budgeting Support. Claimants can apply for an advance and can receive up to 50 per cent of their indicative award. Personal Budgeting Support is also discussed at the claimant’s initial work search interview to gauge their potential support needs and can include money advice.

We continue to work closely with landlords, Local Authorities and other organisations to ensure claimants are supported.

19th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

Between April 2011 and March 2016 DWP awarded no contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd.

19th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether his Department is in communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd in relation to any ongoing commercial tender process.

There have been no communications with this company with regard to any tender process.

21st Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what information his Department holds on the proportion of people who have been diagnosed with autism or Asperger's syndrome and who have been in employment in each of the last five years.

The Department does not hold information on the proportion of people who have been diagnosed with autism or Asperger's syndrome in each of the last five years who have been in employment

As is described in the Government’s Autism Strategy, a number of government departments and agencies are working to update or improve a range of data on people with autism, in order to build up a better understanding of their challenges and needs.

The Government’s Autism Strategy, and the updated Statutory Guidance published in March 2015, sets out in detail how Government will support the autism agenda nationally.

The Autism Strategy can be viewed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/think-autism-an-update-to-the-government-adult-autism-strategy

The Statutory Guidance can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/adult-autism-strategy-statutory-guidance

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
5th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made on the adequacy of the number of dementia care beds in North East Lincolnshire.

Data from the Care Quality Commission show that in June 2019 there are 1,549 beds in care homes for dementia in North East Lincolnshire local authority.

Commissioning social care beds is a matter for local authorities who are best placed to understand the needs of local people and communities, and how best to meet them. For this reason, the Care Act 2014 placed duties on local authorities to shape their local markets so that there is an adequate supply of provision which ensures all adult social care service users have a choice of high quality services.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
5th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect on the provision of accident and emergency care in Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust hospitals of the reduction in services at Louth hospital.

The provision of accident and emergency care in Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust is a matter for local determination. The Trust is also experiencing increases generally due to an upward trend in both accident and emergency (A&E) attendances and admissions from the East Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group area.

The Trust has planned for more growth in attendances and admissions in 2019/20 and is working with partners across Lincolnshire to manage increases in attendances/admissions by:

- Developing an Urgent Treatment Centre at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital to handle non-emergency cases;

- Increasing the hours worked by consultants at the A&E at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital;

- Working with East Midlands Ambulance Service to make sure they take patients to the most appropriate hospital within their region;

- Continuing to work closely to ensure the timely discharge of patients by having social services staff from local councils, including Lincolnshire County Council, working at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital to facilitate this; and

- Working with clinical commissioning groups and other partners on activities to reduce attendances through better access to general practitioners and improve out of hospital provision.

5th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has made to tackle the projected 7 per cent increase in A&E admissions in 2019-20 at Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Trust hospitals.

The provision of accident and emergency care in Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust is a matter for local determination. The Trust is also experiencing increases generally due to an upward trend in both accident and emergency (A&E) attendances and admissions from the East Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group area.

The Trust has planned for more growth in attendances and admissions in 2019/20 and is working with partners across Lincolnshire to manage increases in attendances/admissions by:

- Developing an Urgent Treatment Centre at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital to handle non-emergency cases;

- Increasing the hours worked by consultants at the A&E at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital;

- Working with East Midlands Ambulance Service to make sure they take patients to the most appropriate hospital within their region;

- Continuing to work closely to ensure the timely discharge of patients by having social services staff from local councils, including Lincolnshire County Council, working at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital to facilitate this; and

- Working with clinical commissioning groups and other partners on activities to reduce attendances through better access to general practitioners and improve out of hospital provision.

5th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the total value is of loans paid to NHS trusts; when his Department expects those loans to be repaid; and what the length of the term is of those loans.

The position on the loans that the Department has provided to National Health Service trusts (as at 31 March 2018), together with their length of term, is as follows:

Normal Course of Business Loans

£3.00 billion

Term varies, range 4 to 28 years

Interim Capital Loans

£0.65 billion

Term varies, range 5 to 25 years

Interim Revenue Loans

£7.35 billion

Term is 3 years

The figures for 2018-19 will be released with the Department’s Annual Report and Accounts, in July 2019.

In 2018-19 the Department agreed extensions to many of the interim revenue loans that were due during the financial year and will continue to take refinancing decisions on loans due in the coming year, in light of the NHS’s wider financial position.

23rd May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made on the effectiveness of inspection methods in care homes.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and adult social care providers in England and has a key responsibility in the overall assurance of safety and quality of health and adult social care services. The CQC monitors its own effectiveness of inspection methods in care home and other health settings in a number of ways to ensure that everyone is safe from harm, abuse and neglect. In addition, the CQC is currently collaborating with the University of Manchester’s Alliance Manchester Business School on research exploring the impact of the CQC on the quality of care.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
16th Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to reduce patient notification errors due to NHS bodies having different communication systems.

We are committed to creating a technology infrastructure that allows systems to communicate securely, using open standards for data and interoperability. This will enable health and care professionals to have access to the information they need to provide care. Effective technology supported by interoperability can reduce patient safety errors.

Interoperability and openness is one of the guiding principles set out in, ‘The future of healthcare: our vision for digital, data and technology in health and care’, published on 17 October 2018.

We are also investing in the development of Local Health and Care Record Exemplars (LHCRs). These will allow local areas to ensure data is collected consistently and made available to support joined up and safer patient care. LHCRs will give health and care staff better and faster access to vital information about the person in their care as patients move between different parts of the National Health Service and social care system. The first five Exemplars cover 23.5 million people and will each receive up to £7.5 million over two years.

16th Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has undertaken to ensure that health services such as access to continuing healthcare plans are available to people with hearing impairments or profound deafness.

It is the responsibility of local providers and commissioners of NHS services to make the reasonable adjustments required by the Equality Act 2010 to ensure that disabled people, including those with hearing impairments, are not placed at a substantial disadvantage compared to non-disabled people. Additionally, under the NHS Constitution, National Health Service organisations in England are required to provide high quality comprehensive services, based on clinical need, which do not discriminate between patients on the basis of disability, including hearing impairments.

NHS Continuing Healthcare is a package of care that is arranged and funded solely by the NHS. It is provided when an individual aged 18 or over has been found to have a ‘primary health need’ as set out in the National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare and NHS-funded Nursing Care.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 10 December 2018 to Question 199449, what assessment his Department has made of whether the number of avoidable deaths of people with learning disabilities in the care of the NHS has reduced since the Care Quality Commission began working with NHS Improvement.

The Department is committed to ensuring that all disabled people, including those with a learning disability, have the same opportunities to access high quality healthcare as everyone else. Where necessary, all healthcare services should make reasonable adjustments to ensure this, in line with the requirements of the Equalities Act 2010 and the NHS Information Standard. We have no plans to introduce a national healthcare strategy for disabled people.

In the new year we will consult on the introduction of mandatory learning disability and autism training for health and care staff. This will provide for greater parity of treatment by ensuring that staff understand the needs of people with learning disability or autism and have the skills to deliver the most effective care and support to them.

Learning disabilities and autism are also one of the four clinical priority areas within the National Health Service long-term plan, which will also help to address the inequalities experienced by people with a learning disability or autism.

As of 30 November 2018, 914 reviews of deaths reported to the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme (LeDeR) have been completed with a further 185 at the approval stage. The next annual report of the LeDeR programme is currently planned to be published before summer 2019 and will include data from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. All local areas have access to findings from reviews taking place within them.

The Department does not assess complaints made to the National Health Service by people with a learning disability. The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 set out what local organisations must do in respect of complaint handling in the NHS. These regulations are designed to ensure that wherever possible complaints are resolved effectively at local level with lessons learnt to improve services.

As part of the implementation of the Learning Disability Improvement Standards, a data collection is being undertaken by NHS Improvement to better understand the key themes arising for people with learning disabilities accessing NHS care. As part of the data collection, which will close on 31 December, NHS trusts are expected to measure themselves against the Learning Improvement Standards and a number of metrics allied to each Standard. NHS Improvement has shared data from this collection with the Care Quality Commission to help inform their regulatory approach and identify where their support activity is best prioritised.

We have not made a formal assessment of whether the number of avoidable deaths of people with learning disabilities in the NHS has reduced. The aim of the LeDeR programme and the Learning Disability Improvement Standards is to ensure that NHS trusts and commissioners maintain a focus on avoidable mortality so that the deaths of people with learning disabilities thought to be due to problems in care are significantly reduced. The LeDeR programme is taking place within the context of the Government’s Learning from Deaths Programme and all acute, community and mental health trusts are required to review and publish locally the number of deaths thought to be due to problems in care on a quarterly basis, evidence of what they have learned through reviews and the actions taken to prevent such deaths in future on an annual basis.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 10 December 2018 to Question 199449, what steps his Department is taking to assess whether NHS Trusts have adopted the guidance published by NHS Improvement, Learning Disability Improvement Standards for NHS trusts in England.

The Department is committed to ensuring that all disabled people, including those with a learning disability, have the same opportunities to access high quality healthcare as everyone else. Where necessary, all healthcare services should make reasonable adjustments to ensure this, in line with the requirements of the Equalities Act 2010 and the NHS Information Standard. We have no plans to introduce a national healthcare strategy for disabled people.

In the new year we will consult on the introduction of mandatory learning disability and autism training for health and care staff. This will provide for greater parity of treatment by ensuring that staff understand the needs of people with learning disability or autism and have the skills to deliver the most effective care and support to them.

Learning disabilities and autism are also one of the four clinical priority areas within the National Health Service long-term plan, which will also help to address the inequalities experienced by people with a learning disability or autism.

As of 30 November 2018, 914 reviews of deaths reported to the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme (LeDeR) have been completed with a further 185 at the approval stage. The next annual report of the LeDeR programme is currently planned to be published before summer 2019 and will include data from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. All local areas have access to findings from reviews taking place within them.

The Department does not assess complaints made to the National Health Service by people with a learning disability. The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 set out what local organisations must do in respect of complaint handling in the NHS. These regulations are designed to ensure that wherever possible complaints are resolved effectively at local level with lessons learnt to improve services.

As part of the implementation of the Learning Disability Improvement Standards, a data collection is being undertaken by NHS Improvement to better understand the key themes arising for people with learning disabilities accessing NHS care. As part of the data collection, which will close on 31 December, NHS trusts are expected to measure themselves against the Learning Improvement Standards and a number of metrics allied to each Standard. NHS Improvement has shared data from this collection with the Care Quality Commission to help inform their regulatory approach and identify where their support activity is best prioritised.

We have not made a formal assessment of whether the number of avoidable deaths of people with learning disabilities in the NHS has reduced. The aim of the LeDeR programme and the Learning Disability Improvement Standards is to ensure that NHS trusts and commissioners maintain a focus on avoidable mortality so that the deaths of people with learning disabilities thought to be due to problems in care are significantly reduced. The LeDeR programme is taking place within the context of the Government’s Learning from Deaths Programme and all acute, community and mental health trusts are required to review and publish locally the number of deaths thought to be due to problems in care on a quarterly basis, evidence of what they have learned through reviews and the actions taken to prevent such deaths in future on an annual basis.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the Government assesses complaints made to the NHS by people with learning disabilities.

The Department is committed to ensuring that all disabled people, including those with a learning disability, have the same opportunities to access high quality healthcare as everyone else. Where necessary, all healthcare services should make reasonable adjustments to ensure this, in line with the requirements of the Equalities Act 2010 and the NHS Information Standard. We have no plans to introduce a national healthcare strategy for disabled people.

In the new year we will consult on the introduction of mandatory learning disability and autism training for health and care staff. This will provide for greater parity of treatment by ensuring that staff understand the needs of people with learning disability or autism and have the skills to deliver the most effective care and support to them.

Learning disabilities and autism are also one of the four clinical priority areas within the National Health Service long-term plan, which will also help to address the inequalities experienced by people with a learning disability or autism.

As of 30 November 2018, 914 reviews of deaths reported to the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme (LeDeR) have been completed with a further 185 at the approval stage. The next annual report of the LeDeR programme is currently planned to be published before summer 2019 and will include data from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. All local areas have access to findings from reviews taking place within them.

The Department does not assess complaints made to the National Health Service by people with a learning disability. The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 set out what local organisations must do in respect of complaint handling in the NHS. These regulations are designed to ensure that wherever possible complaints are resolved effectively at local level with lessons learnt to improve services.

As part of the implementation of the Learning Disability Improvement Standards, a data collection is being undertaken by NHS Improvement to better understand the key themes arising for people with learning disabilities accessing NHS care. As part of the data collection, which will close on 31 December, NHS trusts are expected to measure themselves against the Learning Improvement Standards and a number of metrics allied to each Standard. NHS Improvement has shared data from this collection with the Care Quality Commission to help inform their regulatory approach and identify where their support activity is best prioritised.

We have not made a formal assessment of whether the number of avoidable deaths of people with learning disabilities in the NHS has reduced. The aim of the LeDeR programme and the Learning Disability Improvement Standards is to ensure that NHS trusts and commissioners maintain a focus on avoidable mortality so that the deaths of people with learning disabilities thought to be due to problems in care are significantly reduced. The LeDeR programme is taking place within the context of the Government’s Learning from Deaths Programme and all acute, community and mental health trusts are required to review and publish locally the number of deaths thought to be due to problems in care on a quarterly basis, evidence of what they have learned through reviews and the actions taken to prevent such deaths in future on an annual basis.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress has been made on publishing data on case reviews of the death of people with learning disabilities in NHS care, as announced in May 2018.

The Department is committed to ensuring that all disabled people, including those with a learning disability, have the same opportunities to access high quality healthcare as everyone else. Where necessary, all healthcare services should make reasonable adjustments to ensure this, in line with the requirements of the Equalities Act 2010 and the NHS Information Standard. We have no plans to introduce a national healthcare strategy for disabled people.

In the new year we will consult on the introduction of mandatory learning disability and autism training for health and care staff. This will provide for greater parity of treatment by ensuring that staff understand the needs of people with learning disability or autism and have the skills to deliver the most effective care and support to them.

Learning disabilities and autism are also one of the four clinical priority areas within the National Health Service long-term plan, which will also help to address the inequalities experienced by people with a learning disability or autism.

As of 30 November 2018, 914 reviews of deaths reported to the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme (LeDeR) have been completed with a further 185 at the approval stage. The next annual report of the LeDeR programme is currently planned to be published before summer 2019 and will include data from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. All local areas have access to findings from reviews taking place within them.

The Department does not assess complaints made to the National Health Service by people with a learning disability. The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 set out what local organisations must do in respect of complaint handling in the NHS. These regulations are designed to ensure that wherever possible complaints are resolved effectively at local level with lessons learnt to improve services.

As part of the implementation of the Learning Disability Improvement Standards, a data collection is being undertaken by NHS Improvement to better understand the key themes arising for people with learning disabilities accessing NHS care. As part of the data collection, which will close on 31 December, NHS trusts are expected to measure themselves against the Learning Improvement Standards and a number of metrics allied to each Standard. NHS Improvement has shared data from this collection with the Care Quality Commission to help inform their regulatory approach and identify where their support activity is best prioritised.

We have not made a formal assessment of whether the number of avoidable deaths of people with learning disabilities in the NHS has reduced. The aim of the LeDeR programme and the Learning Disability Improvement Standards is to ensure that NHS trusts and commissioners maintain a focus on avoidable mortality so that the deaths of people with learning disabilities thought to be due to problems in care are significantly reduced. The LeDeR programme is taking place within the context of the Government’s Learning from Deaths Programme and all acute, community and mental health trusts are required to review and publish locally the number of deaths thought to be due to problems in care on a quarterly basis, evidence of what they have learned through reviews and the actions taken to prevent such deaths in future on an annual basis.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 10 December 2018 to Question 199449 on Health Services: Learning Disability, what his policy is on introducing a national disabled people’s healthcare strategy to help ensure parity of treatment for disabled people.

The Department is committed to ensuring that all disabled people, including those with a learning disability, have the same opportunities to access high quality healthcare as everyone else. Where necessary, all healthcare services should make reasonable adjustments to ensure this, in line with the requirements of the Equalities Act 2010 and the NHS Information Standard. We have no plans to introduce a national healthcare strategy for disabled people.

In the new year we will consult on the introduction of mandatory learning disability and autism training for health and care staff. This will provide for greater parity of treatment by ensuring that staff understand the needs of people with learning disability or autism and have the skills to deliver the most effective care and support to them.

Learning disabilities and autism are also one of the four clinical priority areas within the National Health Service long-term plan, which will also help to address the inequalities experienced by people with a learning disability or autism.

As of 30 November 2018, 914 reviews of deaths reported to the Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme (LeDeR) have been completed with a further 185 at the approval stage. The next annual report of the LeDeR programme is currently planned to be published before summer 2019 and will include data from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018. All local areas have access to findings from reviews taking place within them.

The Department does not assess complaints made to the National Health Service by people with a learning disability. The Local Authority Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 set out what local organisations must do in respect of complaint handling in the NHS. These regulations are designed to ensure that wherever possible complaints are resolved effectively at local level with lessons learnt to improve services.

As part of the implementation of the Learning Disability Improvement Standards, a data collection is being undertaken by NHS Improvement to better understand the key themes arising for people with learning disabilities accessing NHS care. As part of the data collection, which will close on 31 December, NHS trusts are expected to measure themselves against the Learning Improvement Standards and a number of metrics allied to each Standard. NHS Improvement has shared data from this collection with the Care Quality Commission to help inform their regulatory approach and identify where their support activity is best prioritised.

We have not made a formal assessment of whether the number of avoidable deaths of people with learning disabilities in the NHS has reduced. The aim of the LeDeR programme and the Learning Disability Improvement Standards is to ensure that NHS trusts and commissioners maintain a focus on avoidable mortality so that the deaths of people with learning disabilities thought to be due to problems in care are significantly reduced. The LeDeR programme is taking place within the context of the Government’s Learning from Deaths Programme and all acute, community and mental health trusts are required to review and publish locally the number of deaths thought to be due to problems in care on a quarterly basis, evidence of what they have learned through reviews and the actions taken to prevent such deaths in future on an annual basis.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
5th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he has taken to ensure that people with learning difficulties are adequately supported to receive medical treatment through the NHS.

It is the responsibility of local providers and commissioners of NHS services to make the reasonable adjustments required by the Equality Act 2010 to ensure that disabled people, including those with learning disabilities, are not placed at a substantial disadvantage compared to non-disabled people.

Additionally, under the NHS Constitution, National Health Service organisations are required to provide high quality comprehensive services, based on clinical need, which do not discriminate between patients on the basis of disability, including a learning disability.

NHS Improvement has published Learning Disability Improvement Standards for NHS trusts in England to help ensure that trusts monitor and review the care they provide to people with a learning disability or autism. Compliance with these standards will ensure that trusts assure themselves that they have the necessary structures, processes, workforce and skills to deliver the outcomes that people with learning disabilities and autism expect. The Care Quality Commission is working with NHS Improvement to consider how they can encourage trusts to adopt and work to the standards.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
5th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that people with learning difficulties are not discriminated against when receiving medical care.

It is the responsibility of local providers and commissioners of NHS services to make the reasonable adjustments required by the Equality Act 2010 to ensure that disabled people, including those with learning disabilities, are not placed at a substantial disadvantage compared to non-disabled people.

Additionally, under the NHS Constitution, National Health Service organisations are required to provide high quality comprehensive services, based on clinical need, which do not discriminate between patients on the basis of disability, including a learning disability.

NHS Improvement has published Learning Disability Improvement Standards for NHS trusts in England to help ensure that trusts monitor and review the care they provide to people with a learning disability or autism. Compliance with these standards will ensure that trusts assure themselves that they have the necessary structures, processes, workforce and skills to deliver the outcomes that people with learning disabilities and autism expect. The Care Quality Commission is working with NHS Improvement to consider how they can encourage trusts to adopt and work to the standards.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
9th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure the (a) supply and (b) availability of the drug Methotrexate after the UK leaves the EU.

The United Kingdom’s position on medicines regulation remains clear. We are working to retain a close working partnership with the European Union to ensure that medicines remain available to UK patients in a safe and timely manner. We have been clear that this involves us making sure our regulators continue to work together, as they do with regulators internationally.

6th Nov 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate his Department has made of the number of student nurses experiencing financial hardship as a result of travel costs incurred during training placements.

Information on the numbers of students who apply to universities for financial assistance during their studies is not held centrally by the Department.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
30th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what proportion of payments for NHS England contracts to third party companies go to companies based outside of the Government’s jurisdiction for corporation tax purposes.

Information on National Health Service contracts entered into by NHS England and their local commissioning bodies - clinical commissioning groups - is not held centrally.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
30th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what proportion of NHS England contracts to third party companies go to companies based outside of the Government’s jurisdiction for corporation tax purposes.

Information on National Health Service contracts entered into by NHS England and their local commissioning bodies - clinical commissioning groups - is not held centrally.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
30th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to promote the health benefits of eating more fish and incorporating the principles of the Seafood 2040 Strategy into the NHS, care homes, nursing homes and home care.

The Government recommends eating at least two portions of fish a week, including a portion of oily fish. This recommendation is promoted through a variety of communications including the national healthy eating model the Eatwell Guide, Public Health England’s (PHE’s) catering guidance (including for older adults in residential care), and the NHS Choices website.

PHE, together with representatives from the Department, the National Health Service, the Seafish Industry Authority and others, are part of the ‘Plan for the Public Procurement of Food Implementation Taskforce’ that has been established by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Encouraging and promoting consumption of fish is a component of this plan through implementation of the Government Buying Standards for Food and Catering Services.

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps the Government is taking to promote timely and accurate diagnosis of inflammatory bowel disease.

NHS England and clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are responsible for commissioning services for people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

To support local commissioning, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published best practice guidance for the timely and accurate diagnosis, treatment care and support for patients with IBD.

NICE has published the guidance ’Faecal calprotectin diagnostic tests for inflammatory diseases of the bowel’ which recommends that that faecal calprotectin testing as an option to help support clinicians distinguish between IBD and irritable bowel syndrome.

Faecal calprotectin testing will therefore help decide who should be referred for colonoscopy (the Gold Standard diagnostic test) and who may be amenable to management in primary care. Primary and secondary care clinicians are expected to follow the good practice guidelines and the quality standard.

NHS England commissions specialised Intestinal Failure Services. A number of these centres are currently involved in multidisciplinary training of health professionals in specialised IBD care. In addition, the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland are currently in the process of setting out national standards for surgical management of IBD. Patients are managed by a multidisciplinary team (MDT) with the necessary expertise to enable appropriate monitoring, support and advice necessary to manage the side effects of treatment, flare-ups and to review and maintain remission. MDT support and the associated diagnostic and investigative resource necessary for IBD patient care will usually be found in secondary care settings.

General practitioners and clinicians are expected to take account of relevant NICE guidance to ensure that patients with suspected inflammatory bowel disease are referred quickly and efficiently, and have a specialist assessment within four weeks of referral.

The NICE guidelines are available at the following links:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg152/resources/crohns-disease-management-pdf-35109627942085

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166/resources/ulcerative-colitis-management-pdf-35109695126725

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the NICE Quality Standard on inflammatory bowel disease, what steps he is taking to ensure that patients with suspected inflammatory bowel disease receive a specialist assessment within four weeks of referral.

NHS England and clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are responsible for commissioning services for people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

To support local commissioning, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published best practice guidance for the timely and accurate diagnosis, treatment care and support for patients with IBD.

NICE has published the guidance ’Faecal calprotectin diagnostic tests for inflammatory diseases of the bowel’ which recommends that that faecal calprotectin testing as an option to help support clinicians distinguish between IBD and irritable bowel syndrome.

Faecal calprotectin testing will therefore help decide who should be referred for colonoscopy (the Gold Standard diagnostic test) and who may be amenable to management in primary care. Primary and secondary care clinicians are expected to follow the good practice guidelines and the quality standard.

NHS England commissions specialised Intestinal Failure Services. A number of these centres are currently involved in multidisciplinary training of health professionals in specialised IBD care. In addition, the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland are currently in the process of setting out national standards for surgical management of IBD. Patients are managed by a multidisciplinary team (MDT) with the necessary expertise to enable appropriate monitoring, support and advice necessary to manage the side effects of treatment, flare-ups and to review and maintain remission. MDT support and the associated diagnostic and investigative resource necessary for IBD patient care will usually be found in secondary care settings.

General practitioners and clinicians are expected to take account of relevant NICE guidance to ensure that patients with suspected inflammatory bowel disease are referred quickly and efficiently, and have a specialist assessment within four weeks of referral.

The NICE guidelines are available at the following links:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg152/resources/crohns-disease-management-pdf-35109627942085

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166/resources/ulcerative-colitis-management-pdf-35109695126725

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps (a) his Department and (b) NHS England are taking to improve the training for healthcare professionals in primary care to (i) diagnose and (ii) manage inflammatory bowel disease.

NHS England and clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are responsible for commissioning services for people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

To support local commissioning, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published best practice guidance for the timely and accurate diagnosis, treatment care and support for patients with IBD.

NICE has published the guidance ’Faecal calprotectin diagnostic tests for inflammatory diseases of the bowel’ which recommends that that faecal calprotectin testing as an option to help support clinicians distinguish between IBD and irritable bowel syndrome.

Faecal calprotectin testing will therefore help decide who should be referred for colonoscopy (the Gold Standard diagnostic test) and who may be amenable to management in primary care. Primary and secondary care clinicians are expected to follow the good practice guidelines and the quality standard.

NHS England commissions specialised Intestinal Failure Services. A number of these centres are currently involved in multidisciplinary training of health professionals in specialised IBD care. In addition, the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland are currently in the process of setting out national standards for surgical management of IBD. Patients are managed by a multidisciplinary team (MDT) with the necessary expertise to enable appropriate monitoring, support and advice necessary to manage the side effects of treatment, flare-ups and to review and maintain remission. MDT support and the associated diagnostic and investigative resource necessary for IBD patient care will usually be found in secondary care settings.

General practitioners and clinicians are expected to take account of relevant NICE guidance to ensure that patients with suspected inflammatory bowel disease are referred quickly and efficiently, and have a specialist assessment within four weeks of referral.

The NICE guidelines are available at the following links:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg152/resources/crohns-disease-management-pdf-35109627942085

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166/resources/ulcerative-colitis-management-pdf-35109695126725

18th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps the Government is taking to increase (a) access to and (b) use of faecal calprotectin in primary care in cases where inflammatory bowel disease is suspected.

NHS England and clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are responsible for commissioning services for people with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

To support local commissioning, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published best practice guidance for the timely and accurate diagnosis, treatment care and support for patients with IBD.

NICE has published the guidance ’Faecal calprotectin diagnostic tests for inflammatory diseases of the bowel’ which recommends that that faecal calprotectin testing as an option to help support clinicians distinguish between IBD and irritable bowel syndrome.

Faecal calprotectin testing will therefore help decide who should be referred for colonoscopy (the Gold Standard diagnostic test) and who may be amenable to management in primary care. Primary and secondary care clinicians are expected to follow the good practice guidelines and the quality standard.

NHS England commissions specialised Intestinal Failure Services. A number of these centres are currently involved in multidisciplinary training of health professionals in specialised IBD care. In addition, the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland are currently in the process of setting out national standards for surgical management of IBD. Patients are managed by a multidisciplinary team (MDT) with the necessary expertise to enable appropriate monitoring, support and advice necessary to manage the side effects of treatment, flare-ups and to review and maintain remission. MDT support and the associated diagnostic and investigative resource necessary for IBD patient care will usually be found in secondary care settings.

General practitioners and clinicians are expected to take account of relevant NICE guidance to ensure that patients with suspected inflammatory bowel disease are referred quickly and efficiently, and have a specialist assessment within four weeks of referral.

The NICE guidelines are available at the following links:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg152/resources/crohns-disease-management-pdf-35109627942085

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166/resources/ulcerative-colitis-management-pdf-35109695126725

22nd Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 20 March to Question 132917, on Inflammatory Bowel Disease, if his Department will take further steps to ensure that every GP is made aware of the toolkit.

It is not the role of the Department to directly promote clinical toolkits to clinicians. As set out in the previous answer, the developers of the toolkit, Crohn’s and Colitis UK with the Royal College of General Practitioners, have undertaken a range of activities to promote general practitioners’ awareness of the new resource following its launch last summer.

15th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will take steps to ensure that GPs receive a copy of Crohn's & Colitis UK's latest Inflammatory Bowel Disease toolkit to improve (a) awareness, (b) early diagnosis and (b) treatment plans for that condition.

In August 2017, Crohn’s and Colitis UK in partnership with the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) launched a new Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) toolkit: an online resource for general practitioners (GPs) and healthcare professionals designed to improve understanding of Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis, collectively known as IBD. The Toolkit was developed as part of a 12 month project on IBD, and includes a range of resources for GPs to improve detection of inflammatory bowel disease and to support primary care clinicians in treating, managing and referring patients with the condition.

The Toolkit was promoted at events across the United Kingdom and an IBD Twitter chat with an expert panel was held in February 2018. The Toolkit, regional events and Twitter session were all promoted to GPs via the RCGP website and newsletter and more widely by Crohn’s and Colitis UK. The Toolkit can be found at the following link:

www.rcgp.org.uk/clinical-and-research/resources/toolkits/inflammatory-bowel-disease-toolkit.aspx

13th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure adequate levels of funding for organ transplant operations after the roll-out of the opt-out only scheme for organ donations.

The Government’s consultation on deemed consent for organ and tissue donation in England closed on 6 March 2018. The consultation sought views on how a new system of deemed consent for deceased donation could work in England and proposed a change in the current law on organ donation, to better reflect the position of the majority of people who would be happy to donate their organs and tissue after their death. This included the ability to refuse to consent to donation, so that the decisions of those who do not wish to be organ and tissue donors are also respected.

An impact assessment was published as part of the Government’s public consultation, which set out the costs involved in moving to a new deemed consent system in England. This suggested that, when introduced as part of a wider communication and logistical package, such a system can be associated with higher donation rates. As part of the consultation, we invited further evidence to be submitted and will carefully now consider this before the Government responds.

13th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of trends in the level of organ transplants as a result of the roll-out of opt-out only organ donations.

The Government’s consultation on deemed consent for organ and tissue donation in England closed on 6 March 2018. The consultation sought views on how a new system of deemed consent for deceased donation could work in England and proposed a change in the current law on organ donation, to better reflect the position of the majority of people who would be happy to donate their organs and tissue after their death. This included the ability to refuse to consent to donation, so that the decisions of those who do not wish to be organ and tissue donors are also respected.

An impact assessment was published as part of the Government’s public consultation, which set out the costs involved in moving to a new deemed consent system in England. This suggested that, when introduced as part of a wider communication and logistical package, such a system can be associated with higher donation rates. As part of the consultation, we invited further evidence to be submitted and will carefully now consider this before the Government responds.

7th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to increase the proportion of patients with inflammatory bowel disease who receive support and information in primary care and acute care to enable them to self-manage.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is the collective name used to describe ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. To support commissioners to deliver local services for people with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published, ‘Crohn’s Disease Management in Adults, Children and Young People’, updated in May 2016, and, ‘Ulcerative Colitis Management in Adults, Children and Young People’, in June 2013.

The NICE Crohn’s clinical guideline makes clear that minimising psychological concerns and possible side effects of treatment are a key part of best practice for all people with Crohn's disease. The NICE Ulcerative Colitis clinical guideline highlights psychological support as being particularly important if a patient is considering surgery for their disease, and post-operatively, when surgery has taken place. Patient education, information and support are priorities in both guidelines. This can cover important information about diet and lifestyle, treatment and side-effects, as well signposting to support groups and other relevant services. Both guidelines can be found at the following links:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg152

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg166

The IBD audit programme was established over 10 years ago with the aim of improving the quality and safety of care for people with IBD throughout the United Kingdom and during this time it has delivered important improvements against NICE standards. Audit reports have covered both treatment and patient experience, the latter of which captured information about quality of information and support at discharge, to help drive improvement in this area. In 2015, eight regional service improvement workshops were conducted by the IBD programme team to share expertise and examples of best practice, and to develop action plans to implement and evaluate improvement in IBD services. Attended by clinicians from across the country, a range of improvement initiatives were taken forward as a result, including around patient information and self-management. The report evaluating this important work and more information on the audit can be found at the following link:

www.rcplondon.ac.uk/projects/ibd-programme

5th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of the relocation of the European Medicines Agency on the future of the Novartis pharmaceutical (a) site and (b) production at that site.

The Government is committed to ensuring a positive outcome for the whole life science sector that enhances competitiveness and builds on the success that we are rightly proud of, as we exit the European Union. Officials across government have been carrying out a programme of sectoral and regulatory analysis to identify the key factors for the life sciences sector that will affect our negotiations with the EU. Ultimately it is for the European Medicines Agency to comment on how it intends to operate from its new location, and what individual companies like Novartis might have to do differently.

14th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answers of 3 November 2017 to Questions 110464 and 110465, on tomography: leasing, if he will take steps to collate this information centrally; and if he will make a statement.

There are no intentions to collect this information centrally.

Decisions are made locally by National Health Service trusts surrounding use of tomography equipment to ensure demand and capacity is effectively managed.

31st Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much each NHS trust has spent on rental payments for mobile CT scanners in each of the last five years.

This information is not collated centrally.

31st Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much the NHS has spent on rental payments for mobile CT scanners in each of the last five years.

This information is not collated centrally.

19th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what progress has been made on delivering the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health recommendation on building the evidence base for specialist housing support for vulnerable people with mental health problems.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to PQ106931 on 16 October 2017.

6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to improve delivery of primary care health services for people with coeliac disease; and if he will make a statement.

To support primary care services in the diagnosis, treatment, care and support of people with coeliac disease, in September 2015, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published the best practice guideline Coeliac disease: recognition, assessment and management.

The NICE guideline sets out seven recommendations to improve services for coeliac patients. These include implementation advice on the provision of laboratory testing and interpretation of results and access to healthcare professionals trained to give specialist dietetic advice in relation to coeliac disease. The guidance can be found at the following link:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng20

In October 2016, NICE published an accompanying Quality Standard (QS) that sets out the markers of high quality care for people with coeliac disease. The QS can be found at the following link:

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/qs134

5th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether he plans to maintain the availability of gluten-free prescriptions on the NHS.

Staple gluten-free foods continue to be available on prescription for people with coeliac disease. We are in the process of making a decision on whether or not to make any changes to primary care prescribing of gluten-free foods following the recent public consultation.

5th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to improve access to gluten-free food for people with coeliac disease.

Staple gluten-free foods continue to be available on prescription for people with coeliac disease. We are in the process of making a decision on whether or not to make any changes to primary care prescribing of gluten-free foods following the recent public consultation.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether he plans to maintain gluten-free prescriptions on the NHS.

Staple gluten-free foods continue to be available on prescription for people with coeliac disease. We are in the process of making a decision on whether or not to make any changes to primary care prescribing of gluten-free foods following the recent public consultation.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his Department is doing to improve access to gluten-free food for people with coeliac disease.

Staple gluten-free foods continue to be available on prescription for people with coeliac disease. We are in the process of making a decision on whether or not to make any changes to primary care prescribing of gluten-free foods following the recent public consultation.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his Department is doing to improve recognition of coeliac disease by primary care health services.

To support primary care services in the diagnosis, treatment care and support people with coeliac disease, in September 2015 the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) published the best practice guideline Coeliac disease: recognition, assessment and management.

The NICE guideline sets out seven recommendations to improve services for coeliac patients and includes implementation advice for the local National Health Service on the provision of the laboratory testing and interpretation of results and access to healthcare professionals trained to give specialist dietetic advice in relation to coeliac disease. The guidance can be found at the following link:

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng20

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he has taken to ensure that children with eating disorders are treated as early as possible in the last 12 months.

NHS England has set a new access standard, to be achieved by 2020, that 95% of patients are to be treated within four weeks of their first contact with a designated healthcare professional. For urgent cases, the standard will be one week. The very worst emergency cases should find support within 24 hours. This has been funded by £30 million each year, which is scheduled to continue until 2020.

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what effect NHS England funding changes have had on eating disorder nursing provision in the last 12 months.

This information is not collected centrally.

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effect of changes to Community Support Services on readmission rates to special eating disorder units.

The Government is investing an additional £30 million per year to improve access to effective eating disorder care in the community. The additional investment has helped to create 67 new or extended Community Eating Disorder teams across England. The ambition is to improve early access to effective care, improve outcomes and reduce relapse rates, the need for inpatient care, and length of stay when admission is required.

For any admission, the community eating disorder team are to ensure continuity of care pre- and post- admission and maintain contact with the young person and family during admission.

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to address the difference in the level of funding for (a) adult and (b) child eating disorder service provision in England.

NHS England sets overall baseline allocations for clinical commissioning groups and does not generally determine funding for specific services. Commissioners determine their budgets locally with reference to national planning requirements like the Mental Health Investment Standard, waiting time/access targets and local needs based assessment.

24th Apr 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the risk to children with eating disorders of learned behaviours when such children are placed in general units.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) clinical guideline for the recognition and treatment of eating disorder has been updated and is scheduled to be published in May 2017.

https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/indevelopment/gid-cgwave0703

The draft clinical guideline on which NICE has consulted, emphasised that admissions should be made to an age appropriate facility, close to the young person’s home as possible and have the capacity to provide appropriate educational activities.

21st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, for what reason NHS England does not refer patients to Navigo's specialist eating disorder unit Rharian Fields in Great Grimsby.

We are informed by NHS England that its Specialised Commissioning North team “does refer patients to Rharian Fields. The choice of a unit is based on a number of criteria including patient choice, service capacity, patient mix and clinical need. Locally, when patients are referred to Rharian Fields, a clinical discussion takes place regarding whether this is the most appropriate pathway/placement for the patient. If not, they will then be referred to a different unit.”

21st Mar 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to (a) secure appointments and (b) provide additional support in other ways to the 111 patients in Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Trust areas whose referrals were missed off waiting lists in 2016.

Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust are working closely with their local commissioners and general practitioners to ensure patients who have been referred are included on their waiting lists. They are taking a number of measures including carrying out reviews and checks of all their waiting lists to ensure every patient has been captured.

23rd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to improve the enforcement of NICE guidance related to IVF treatment.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) fertility guideline is advisory but clinical commissioning groups are expected to have regard to it when making decisions on commissioning fertility services for their community.

I wrote to the National Medical Director, Sir Bruce Keogh, on 10 February 2017 to ask that NHS England re-emphasise to all those involved in commissioning fertility services that they should have regard to the NICE fertility guideline as it currently stands.

23rd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what measures are in place to ensure CCGs follow the guidance provided to them by NICE on the provision of IVF treatment.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) fertility guideline is advisory but clinical commissioning groups are expected to have regard to it when making decisions on commissioning fertility services for their community.

I wrote to the National Medical Director, Sir Bruce Keogh, on 10 February 2017 to ask that NHS England re-emphasise to all those involved in commissioning fertility services that they should have regard to the NICE fertility guideline as it currently stands.

22nd Feb 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to ensure that all clinical commissioning groups provide the full cycle of IVF for patients that meet the criteria in NICE's fertility guidelines.

The provision of National Health Service funded in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment services is a matter for local determination. In making decisions on the level of funding, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are expected to take account of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) fertility guideline recommending that three full cycles of IVF should be provided for qualifying couples. On 10 February 2017 I wrote to the National Medical Director, Sir Bruce Keogh, to ask that NHS England re-emphasise to all those involved in commissioning fertility services that they should have regard to the NICE fertility guideline as it currently stands.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave her on 30 January 2017 to Questions 61798 and 61799 in which I set out the work currently underway to assist CCGs to commission fertility services more effectively.

25th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what proportion of clinical commissioning groups offer three full cycles of IVF treatment paid for by the NHS.

In England and Wales, guidance on the provision of National Health Service funded in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment services is provided by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in its guideline ‘Fertility: Assessment and treatment for people with fertility problems’. To assist clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to effectively commission IVF services for their local population, the Department, NHS England, professional and stakeholder groups are working together to develop a benchmark price for IVF to ensure that CCGs can get best value for their money. Additionally, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, has developed commissioning guidance to improve the quality of commissioning. NHS England has agreed to disseminate and promote the guidance to all CCGs in England.

The provision of funded treatment services in other parts of the United Kingdom is a matter for the devolved administrations.

Information on local provision of NHS funded IVF treatment is not collected centrally. A survey carried out by Fertility Fairness in 2016 indicated that 16% of CCGs in England offered three cycles of IVF to qualifying couples.

25th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to ensure equal access to IVF treatment across the UK.

In England and Wales, guidance on the provision of National Health Service funded in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment services is provided by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence in its guideline ‘Fertility: Assessment and treatment for people with fertility problems’. To assist clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to effectively commission IVF services for their local population, the Department, NHS England, professional and stakeholder groups are working together to develop a benchmark price for IVF to ensure that CCGs can get best value for their money. Additionally, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, has developed commissioning guidance to improve the quality of commissioning. NHS England has agreed to disseminate and promote the guidance to all CCGs in England.

The provision of funded treatment services in other parts of the United Kingdom is a matter for the devolved administrations.

Information on local provision of NHS funded IVF treatment is not collected centrally. A survey carried out by Fertility Fairness in 2016 indicated that 16% of CCGs in England offered three cycles of IVF to qualifying couples.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether his Department has had communications with iNHouse Communications Ltd in connection with any current commercial tender process.

The Department can confirm following a detailed search of its internal record systems and all registered interest in the current commercial tenders process, that iNHouse Communications Ltd are not a registered supplier and consequently there are no records of any commercial tenders or communications being held with this company.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Department can confirm following a detailed search of its internal record systems that iNHouse Communications Ltd are not a registered supplier and consequently there are no records of any commercial contracts being awarded during the past five years.

25th Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, which branch of the NHS has responsibility for funding the diagnosing of (a) autism and (b) Asperger's syndrome.

Clinical diagnosis of autism and Asperger syndrome would usually be made by National Health Service paediatric, psychiatric or mental health services, commissioned by clinical commissioning groups. The exception would be where a diagnosis was made by a specialised service, which would be commissioned by NHS England. Professionals funded by local authorities (such as educational psychologists) may also make a diagnosis.

22nd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans his Department has to ensure the continued development of GP networks.

The Prime Minister’s GP Access Fund has enabled groups of general practitioner (GP) practices, often collaborating with others such as community pharmacies or ambulance services, to provide new and expanded services together. Operating under a single contract within a local area and sharing work and resources has enabled the 2,500 practices in the programme to significantly develop their networks.

Most of the GP Access Fund schemes have, through the programme, strengthened their arrangements for collaboration, developed a more prominent identity with patients, and grown their leadership and management capabilities. This has been facilitated by the support programme put in place by NHS England, helping the networks to make faster progress on issues such as information technology, governance and care redesign. It has also built a legacy of more cohesive and capable teams for the future.

NHS England has supported the creation of the Royal College of General Practitioners’ network of federations, which is growing rapidly as a high quality resource for practices wishing to deepen their collaboration and improve services for patients. Funding for this to continue into 2016/17 has been confirmed.

The New Care Models Programme is also supporting networks of GP practices to come together with community, mental health and hospital services to provide more joined-up care for patients.

22nd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effects on general practices of increases in the number of patients presenting at GP surgeries in the last 12 months; and what steps he is taking to ensure that GP surgeries can cope with the number of patients presenting.

We recognise the vital job that general practitioners (GPs) do. We know how hard GPs and their practice teams work and the challenges that they are facing in providing care for growing numbers of older people and patients with more complex needs.

Figures from the Health and Social Care Information Centre show that the number of patients registered with a GP has increased from 28,595,310 in 2015 to 28,893,403 in 2016, an increase of 1.0%. The GP Patient Survey, published in January 2016 shows a slight decline in the number of patients reporting that they are able to get a convenient GP appointment. Taken together, this suggests that GP workload may be increasing.

The Government is committed to providing the support GPs need so they can spend more time with patients. The new contract will see an investment of £220 million for 2016 to 2017, and we are keen to reduce administrative demands on those delivering care where practicable.

We are also investing in the primary and community care workforce and are committed to increasing the workforce by 10,000 by 2020, including an extra 5,000 doctors working in general practice.

GPs are changing the way patients can access GP appointments, not just 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday. The Prime Minister’s GP Access Fund is a £175 million investment to test improved and innovative methods of accessing general practice, including opening from 8am to 8pm on weekdays and weekends; better use of telecare and apps; more innovative ways to access services by video call, telephone and email; and more integrated services.

22nd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what information he holds on the number of GPs in Great Grimsby constituency who have given notice of their retirement.

This information is not collected centrally.

22nd Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many GPs in Great Grimsby constituency have retired in the last 12 months.

This information is not collected centrally.

17th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of making the drug nabilone available on the NHS for people with multiple sclerosis.

We have made no such assessment. Nabilone is not licensed for use in the treatment of multiple sclerosis.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of local authority spending on public health.

The public health system is locally led with local authorities having the statutory responsibility to improve the health of their population. They receive a public health grant from Public Health England (PHE) to support them with this.

While responsibility for the performance and the effectiveness of public health is a local one, nationally a Public Health Outcomes Framework has been developed to provide a measure of this effectiveness and PHE has developed a range of tools to allow transparent benchmarking of performance.

PHE has also developed an assurance framework, ratified by the National Audit Office, for ensuring compliance by all local authorities with the terms of the public health grant.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many hospital trusts employ 1.5 full time equivalent inflammatory bowel disease nurses per 250,000 population.

Information on the number of hospital trusts that employ inflammatory bowel disease nurses, at 1.5 full-time equivalent or otherwise, is not collected by the Department.

It is for local National Health Service organisations with their knowledge of the healthcare needs of their local populations to invest in training for specialist skills and to deploy specialist nurses.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the average length of time taken to be diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease.

Information concerning the average length of time taken to be diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease is not collected.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what the current referral waiting time for gastroenterology is in each clinical commissioning group area.

Information on the average waiting times in each clinical commissioning group for patients still waiting to start treatment in gastroenterology at the end of January 2016 is published by NHS England and is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/rtt-waiting-times/rtt-data-2015-16/#Jan16

See incomplete commissioner Jan16 spreadsheet, Referral to Treatment Waiting Times by clinical commissioning group are found under the ‘commissioner’ tab.

15th Mar 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of trends in waiting times for elective surgery for people with inflammatory bowel disease.

Inflammatory bowel disease is not uniquely identified in the International Classification of Diseases and therefore it is not possible to specifically identify waiting times for people with this condition.

16th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate he has made of the number of healthcare practitioners involved in notifying parents that their baby has Down's syndrome who have not received relevant specialist training.

It is the responsibility of the professional regulators to set the standards and outcomes for education and training and approve training curricular to ensure newly qualified healthcare professionals are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to provide high quality patient care. This includes ensuring healthcare professionals have the appropriate skills to effectively and sensitively communicate with patients or their family members.


Providers of Care Quality Commission regulated services are required to ensure that their staff have the qualifications, competence, skills and experience which are necessary for the work to be performed by them. If they work regularly with people with learning disabilities, they will be expected to have sufficient knowledge of that subject area.


The Care Certificate, which was introduced in April 2015, is helping NHS service providers to ensure that their new healthcare assistants have the right fundamental skills and knowledge, including in communication and awareness of learning disability.


Healthcare providers also have a duty to invest in the training and education of their staff. Health Education England will work with healthcare providers to ensure that the continuing personal and professional development of staff continues beyond the end of formal training to enable staff to deliver safe and high quality healthcare and public health services both now and in the future.


The Department does not issue guidance on how healthcare professionals should communicate specific information, or collect data on staff that have received specific communication training. Which staff have certain responsibilities, for example notifying parents that their baby has Downs Syndrome, will be determined by their employer as part of agreeing their job role.

16th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many (a) nurses and (b) healthcare assistants have undergone training for notifying parents that their baby has Down's syndrome.

It is the responsibility of the professional regulators to set the standards and outcomes for education and training and approve training curricular to ensure newly qualified healthcare professionals are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to provide high quality patient care. This includes ensuring healthcare professionals have the appropriate skills to effectively and sensitively communicate with patients or their family members.


Providers of Care Quality Commission regulated services are required to ensure that their staff have the qualifications, competence, skills and experience which are necessary for the work to be performed by them. If they work regularly with people with learning disabilities, they will be expected to have sufficient knowledge of that subject area.


The Care Certificate, which was introduced in April 2015, is helping NHS service providers to ensure that their new healthcare assistants have the right fundamental skills and knowledge, including in communication and awareness of learning disability.


Healthcare providers also have a duty to invest in the training and education of their staff. Health Education England will work with healthcare providers to ensure that the continuing personal and professional development of staff continues beyond the end of formal training to enable staff to deliver safe and high quality healthcare and public health services both now and in the future.


The Department does not issue guidance on how healthcare professionals should communicate specific information, or collect data on staff that have received specific communication training. Which staff have certain responsibilities, for example notifying parents that their baby has Downs Syndrome, will be determined by their employer as part of agreeing their job role.

16th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what training is given to healthcare practitioners for notifying parents that their baby has Down's syndrome.

It is the responsibility of the professional regulators to set the standards and outcomes for education and training and approve training curricular to ensure newly qualified healthcare professionals are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to provide high quality patient care. This includes ensuring healthcare professionals have the appropriate skills to effectively and sensitively communicate with patients or their family members.


Providers of Care Quality Commission regulated services are required to ensure that their staff have the qualifications, competence, skills and experience which are necessary for the work to be performed by them. If they work regularly with people with learning disabilities, they will be expected to have sufficient knowledge of that subject area.


The Care Certificate, which was introduced in April 2015, is helping NHS service providers to ensure that their new healthcare assistants have the right fundamental skills and knowledge, including in communication and awareness of learning disability.


Healthcare providers also have a duty to invest in the training and education of their staff. Health Education England will work with healthcare providers to ensure that the continuing personal and professional development of staff continues beyond the end of formal training to enable staff to deliver safe and high quality healthcare and public health services both now and in the future.


The Department does not issue guidance on how healthcare professionals should communicate specific information, or collect data on staff that have received specific communication training. Which staff have certain responsibilities, for example notifying parents that their baby has Downs Syndrome, will be determined by their employer as part of agreeing their job role.

16th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what guidelines his Department issues on notifying parents of (a) Downs syndrome and (b) other chromosomal disorders.

It is the responsibility of the professional regulators to set the standards and outcomes for education and training and approve training curricular to ensure newly qualified healthcare professionals are equipped with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to provide high quality patient care. This includes ensuring healthcare professionals have the appropriate skills to effectively and sensitively communicate with patients or their family members.


Providers of Care Quality Commission regulated services are required to ensure that their staff have the qualifications, competence, skills and experience which are necessary for the work to be performed by them. If they work regularly with people with learning disabilities, they will be expected to have sufficient knowledge of that subject area.


The Care Certificate, which was introduced in April 2015, is helping NHS service providers to ensure that their new healthcare assistants have the right fundamental skills and knowledge, including in communication and awareness of learning disability.


Healthcare providers also have a duty to invest in the training and education of their staff. Health Education England will work with healthcare providers to ensure that the continuing personal and professional development of staff continues beyond the end of formal training to enable staff to deliver safe and high quality healthcare and public health services both now and in the future.


The Department does not issue guidance on how healthcare professionals should communicate specific information, or collect data on staff that have received specific communication training. Which staff have certain responsibilities, for example notifying parents that their baby has Downs Syndrome, will be determined by their employer as part of agreeing their job role.

19th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many permanent gastroenterologist consultants were employed in the NHS in the last six years.

The following table shows the number of permanent gastroenterologist consultants employed in the National Health Service in England in the last six years. The figures are taken from the NHS hospital and community health services (HCHS) monthly workforce statistics, which are published by the Health and Social Care Information Centre.

NHS HCHS Gastroenterology Consultants in England

full-time equivalent

July 2010

July 2011

July 2012

July 2013

July 2014

July 2015

713

797

838

882

921

1, 005

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre, NHS HCHS monthly workforce statistics, July 2015

5th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the level of unmet need for locked rehabilitation units offering intense psychology and substance misuse support to patients with personality disorders and drug or alcohol problems in the Humber area.

The Department has made no such assessment. These services are locally commissioned.

5th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what information he holds on the number of gastroenterology appointments specifically related to Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis that have been cancelled or postponed at the request of the Grimsby and Goole Hospital Trust in the last 12 months.


The information is not held centrally.


5th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will estimate the number of gastroenterology appointments specifically related to Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis that have been cancelled or postponed at the request of an NHS provider in the last 12 months.


The information is not held centrally.


5th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will estimate the number of NHS patients with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis who have not had a gastroenterology appointment in the last six months.


The information is not held centrally.


5th Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will estimate the number of NHS patients with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis who have not had a gastroenterology appointment in the last six months and who have had an appointment cancelled or postponed by their NHS provider during the last six months.


The information is not held centrally.


2nd Nov 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how many permanent gastroenterologist consultants are currently employed in the NHS.

The latest monthly workforce statistics for July 2015 which are published by the Health and Social Care Information Centre show that there are 1,005 full-time equivalent gastroenterologist consultants currently employed in the National Health Service in England.

7th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether he held discussions on the future of the UK fishing industry with the Norwegian Foreign Minister during his recent visit to the UK.

The Foreign Secretary, my Rt Hon. Friend the Member for Uxbridge and South Ruislip (Boris Johnson) and the Norwegian Foreign Minister discussed a range of foreign and bilateral policy issues. The future of the UK fishing industry was not discussed.

7th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether he held discussions on the potential effect of tariffs on the seafood trade between Britain and Norway with the Norwegian Foreign Minister during his recent visit to the UK.

The Foreign Secretary met Børge Brende, the Norwegian Foreign Minister, in London on 5 December. Børge Brende, the Norwegian Foreign Minister, did not raise the subject of fishing, and neither did the Foreign Secretary. Most of their discussion focused on the US election, and Brende’s impression of a what a Trump administration may look like. They also discussed Brexit and the protection the UK’s membership of the EU had provided against the growth of red tape. Brende had a separate meeting with Sir Alan Duncan on a similar range of issues and fishing was not raised.

26th Sep 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the Government plans to reduce excise duty on UK produced petroleum.

The government recognises that transport is a significant cost for households and businesses. That is why for the last nine years the government has frozen fuel duty at a cost of £53bn, saving the average car driver £1,000 compared to pre-2010 plans.

All taxes remain under review with any future decision made as part of the normal Budget processes and in the context of the wider fiscal position.

18th Dec 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many kinship carers who applied for child tax credit were exempt from the two-child limit in 2017-18; and how many of those people were financially affected by the benefit cap in that period.

The number of Child Tax Credit claimants who received an exception from the policy to provide support for a maximum of two children on the basis of non-parental care was 270 on 2 April 2018. This information is published and can be found by following the URL:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-tax-credit-and-universal-credit-claimants-statistics-related-to-the-policy-to-provide-support-for-a-maximum-of-2-children-april-2018

No claimants were excluded from financial support where supporting documentation was provided.

HMRC does not hold data on how many of these kinship carers were financially affected by the benefit cap.

The most recent benefit cap figures were published on 1 November 2018 and are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/benefit-cap-number-of-households-capped-to-august-2018

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
17th Dec 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what (a) training and (b) guidance has been provided to HMRC staff in relation to the variation in the two child limit exemption for kinship carers and adopters applying for child tax credit.

HMRC fully recognises that the policy to provide support for a maximum of two children is a difficult and sensitive issue, and has set up procedures that are mindful of the sensitivities involved. HMRC has a specialist operational team to handle claims for exceptions relating to this policy. Dedicated guidance is in place for this team which is actively maintained to ensure it is kept up to date.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
17th Dec 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what processes are in place to compensate kinship carers that are unable to claim child tax credit for their birth child in the period between 1 April 2017 and 28 November 2018 as a result of the two child exemption.

The regulations to extend support for kinship carers and parents who adopt in Child Tax Credit (CTC) came into force on 28 November 2018. HMRC is already in contact with a number of families who may qualify for additional support and will be contacting all CTC claimants who have added a third or subsequent child to their award since 6 April 2017 to advise them of the policy change. Anyone who thinks they may have been affected by the policy change will be advised to get in touch with HMRC's specialist operational team. All individuals who qualify for the extension, will receive payment for their third or subsequent child from the date the child, or children, were added to their award.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
6th Dec 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many first time buyers in (a) Great Grimsby constituency and (b) the UK he expects to benefit from the changes to stamp duty announced in Autumn Budget 2017 in each of the next five years.

The estimated numbers of purchases benefitting from the Stamp Duty Land Tax relief for first-time buyers in the UK in each of the next five years are as follows:

England and Northern Ireland

2018/19

209,000

2019/20

213,000

2020/21

216,000

2021/22

219,000

2022/23

223,000

SDLT is devolved in Scotland and will be devolved to Wales from April 2018. The figures in the table therefore relate to England and Northern Ireland. HMRC is unable to provide estimates for first time buyers at a constituency level.

5th Dec 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many kinship carers have been denied child tax credit for a baby to whom they or their partner have given birth since 6 April 2017.

I refer the Honourable Member to the answer given on 19 October in response to question 107976.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
5th Dec 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate his Department has made of the number of kinship carers who will be unable to claim child tax credit for their own baby as a result of the restriction of child tax credit to two children within the household in the financial years (a) 2017-18, (b) 2018-19 and (c) 2019-20.

I refer the Honourable Member to the answer given on 17 October in response to question 107327.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
5th Dec 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the savings that will accrue to the public purse in financial years (a) 2017-18, (b) 2018-19 and (c) 2019-20 as a result of kinship carers with two children in a household not being able to claim child tax credit for their own baby.

I refer the Honourable Member to the answer given on 17 October in response to question 107327.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
16th Oct 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many kinship carers have been denied child tax credit, for a baby to whom they or their partner have given birth, as a result of the restriction of child tax credit to two children in a household since 6 April 2017.

The government is committed to making the welfare system fair for those who pay for it as well as those who benefit from it. In recognition that some tax credit claimants are not able to make choices about the number of children in their family, the government has provided exceptions for certain groups, including in cases of kinship care.

Data on the exceptions is intended for publication at a future date following quality assurance.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
12th Oct 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the potential number of kinship carers who will be unable to claim child tax credit for their own baby because of the restriction of child tax credit to two children in a household in each of the next three years.

The government is committed to making the welfare system fair for those who pay for it as well as those who benefit from it. Families on benefits should have to make the same financial decisions as families supporting themselves solely through work. However, in recognition that some claimants are not able to make choices about the number of children in their family, the government has provided exemptions for certain groups, including in cases of kinship care. The total costs of the exceptions for third and subsequent children are set out in the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/597335/PU2055_Spring_Budget_2017_web_2.pdf

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
12th Oct 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the likely savings that will accrue in each of the next three years from restricting child tax credit to two children for kinship carers who care for additional dependents.

The government is committed to making the welfare system fair for those who pay for it as well as those who benefit from it. Families on benefits should have to make the same financial decisions as families supporting themselves solely through work. However, in recognition that some claimants are not able to make choices about the number of children in their family, the government has provided exemptions for certain groups, including in cases of kinship care. The total costs of the exceptions for third and subsequent children are set out in the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/597335/PU2055_Spring_Budget_2017_web_2.pdf

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
19th Dec 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Department has not awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Limited in the last five years.

19th Dec 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department is in communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd in relation to any ongoing commercial tender process.

The Department is not engaged with iNHouse Communications Ltd in relation to any ongoing commercial tender exercise.

14th Jul 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to paragraph 1.160 of the Spending Review and Autumn Statement 2015, Cm 9162, what estimate he has made of the number of families who will be eligible for tax-free childcare when that scheme is introduced.

Once Tax-Free Childcare is fully open, we estimate that around 2 million families will be eligible and that up to 1 million families may take up the scheme in ‘steady state’, including self-employed parents.

Tax-Free Childcare will be launched from early 2017. To roll out the scheme in a safe and managed way, we will be gradually opening up the scheme to all eligible parents by the end of 2017.

Parents of the youngest children, including self-employed parents, will be able to enter the scheme first - as childcare costs for this group are often the highest. Families with multiple children will be able to join the scheme when their youngest child becomes eligible, and at that point they will be able to receive support for all their qualifying children.

14th Jul 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of self-employed parents who will be eligible for tax-free childcare.

Once Tax-Free Childcare is fully open, we estimate that around 2 million families will be eligible and that up to 1 million families may take up the scheme in ‘steady state’, including self-employed parents.

Tax-Free Childcare will be launched from early 2017. To roll out the scheme in a safe and managed way, we will be gradually opening up the scheme to all eligible parents by the end of 2017.

Parents of the youngest children, including self-employed parents, will be able to enter the scheme first - as childcare costs for this group are often the highest. Families with multiple children will be able to join the scheme when their youngest child becomes eligible, and at that point they will be able to receive support for all their qualifying children.

14th Jul 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has made an assessment of the merits of enabling self-employed parents to open tax-free childcare accounts before those accounts are rolled out to other families.

Once Tax-Free Childcare is fully open, we estimate that around 2 million families will be eligible and that up to 1 million families may take up the scheme in ‘steady state’, including self-employed parents.

Tax-Free Childcare will be launched from early 2017. To roll out the scheme in a safe and managed way, we will be gradually opening up the scheme to all eligible parents by the end of 2017.

Parents of the youngest children, including self-employed parents, will be able to enter the scheme first - as childcare costs for this group are often the highest. Families with multiple children will be able to join the scheme when their youngest child becomes eligible, and at that point they will be able to receive support for all their qualifying children.

14th Jul 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, for what reasons the tax-free childcare scheme will be rolled out to parents of the youngest children first.

Once Tax-Free Childcare is fully open, we estimate that around 2 million families will be eligible and that up to 1 million families may take up the scheme in ‘steady state’, including self-employed parents.

Tax-Free Childcare will be launched from early 2017. To roll out the scheme in a safe and managed way, we will be gradually opening up the scheme to all eligible parents by the end of 2017.

Parents of the youngest children, including self-employed parents, will be able to enter the scheme first - as childcare costs for this group are often the highest. Families with multiple children will be able to join the scheme when their youngest child becomes eligible, and at that point they will be able to receive support for all their qualifying children.

14th Apr 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many people have had their tax credit payments stopped as a result of in-year adjustments in the last 12 months.
23rd Feb 2016
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of whether a five per cent VAT rate could continue to apply to solar PV and solar thermal within the terms of the EU's VAT directive and the judgment of the European Court of Justice on that matter.

The Government has recently consulted on this matter, the results of which will be announced shortly.

19th Oct 2015
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the homelessness prevention grant will continue to be paid to local authorities after the phasing out of the core local government grant.

We want a radical reshaping of the relationship between central and local government, ending the merry go round of clawing back local taxes into Whitehall and handing them out again in the form of grants. We will do this by giving local government full retention of its Business Rates by 2020, meaning all income from local taxes will go towards funding local services. We will work closely with the sector over the coming weeks and months to ensure local people have more control over how their money is spent. This will mean looking at the grants that currently go from central government to local authorities, and the range of responsibilities central government asks local government to deliver. There will still be redistribution between councils so that councils don’t lose out just because their area starts from a weaker position. We will set out more detail at the Spending Review.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
1st Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department has taken to investigate allegations made by whistleblower Jon Wedger against the Metropolitan Police.

The investigation of allegations made against police forces is a matter for the force and the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) to consider as appropriate. The decision-making processes of both organisations are independent of the Government and the Home Office itself.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
25th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if he plans to include officers from Humberside Police on the National Police Air Service.

The National Police Air Service (NPAS) is a collaboration of English and Welsh Police Forces. The operational performance of the service, decisions as to how aircraft are deployed and recruitment are matters for NPAS and the Strategic Board which oversees its work, comprised of Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners.

NPAS publish an annual report outlining the service’s performance and financial position. The Home Office does not collect performance information on NPAS. In an article of 18 April, on the West Yorkshire Police website, NPAS published information describing the next steps in introducing new fixed wing aircraft to operational police activity. The detail of how the police will use these new aircraft to complement their existing helicopter fleet is an operational matter for NPAS.

Police officers from all English and Welsh forces were invited to apply for secondments in NPAS through a recruitment campaign run in April 2019.

25th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the equality of availability of shared policing resources across all relevant police forces.

We recognise that demand on the police is changing and becoming more complex, and have made clear that the issue of the funding formula for police grant will be looked at again in the context of the next Spending Review. It is right first to consider what the overall envelope of funding to the police should be, before determining how it should be distributed.

25th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the effect of the loss of a force-specific police helicopter on the quality of air support in the Humberside area.

The National Police Air Service (NPAS) is a collaboration of English and Welsh Police Forces. The operational performance of the service, decisions as to how aircraft are deployed and recruitment are matters for NPAS and the Strategic Board which oversees its work, comprised of Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners.

NPAS publish an annual report outlining the service’s performance and financial position. The Home Office does not collect performance information on NPAS. In an article of 18 April, on the West Yorkshire Police website, NPAS published information describing the next steps in introducing new fixed wing aircraft to operational police activity. The detail of how the police will use these new aircraft to complement their existing helicopter fleet is an operational matter for NPAS.

Police officers from all English and Welsh forces were invited to apply for secondments in NPAS through a recruitment campaign run in April 2019.

25th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of fixed wing aircraft compared to helicopters in providing air support to police operations.

The National Police Air Service (NPAS) is a collaboration of English and Welsh Police Forces. The operational performance of the service, decisions as to how aircraft are deployed and recruitment are matters for NPAS and the Strategic Board which oversees its work, comprised of Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners.

NPAS publish an annual report outlining the service’s performance and financial position. The Home Office does not collect performance information on NPAS. In an article of 18 April, on the West Yorkshire Police website, NPAS published information describing the next steps in introducing new fixed wing aircraft to operational police activity. The detail of how the police will use these new aircraft to complement their existing helicopter fleet is an operational matter for NPAS.

Police officers from all English and Welsh forces were invited to apply for secondments in NPAS through a recruitment campaign run in April 2019.

18th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to the Answer of 11 April 2019 to Question 242182 on MOD Boscombe Down, when the (a) review of future requirement is expected to be completed and (b) outcome of the March 2019 new competitive process will be published.

As stated previously the strategic review was initiated in February 2019 and it is anticipated to be completed by July 2019. At this point the new competition will be issued with an anticipated completion of March 2020.

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
8th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what progress he has made on the Joint Forces Command review into the Boscombe Down Airfield emergency cover tender.

A strategic review of the requirement was initiated in February 2019, which is still being undertaken.

The original competed contract has been terminated and the future requirement is being reviewed; I envisage a new competition will be initiated and completed by March 2019.

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
8th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether the Boscombe Down Airfield emergency cover tender is a classified as matter of national defence.

The tender for the provision of emergency ambulance cover at Ministry of Defence Boscombe Down is not classified as a matter of national defence.

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
8th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what contracts his Department has awarded to Healthcare Resource Group in each of the last five years.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) has not awarded any contracts to Healthcare Resource Group in the last five years. However, seven contracts have been awarded to Health Care Resourcing Group Limited over this period; a contract for the provision of medical services to the Army (started November 2014 and ended December 2017) and six contracts for temporary healthcare workers (started February 2017 and due to end in May 2019).

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
5th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department has ever awarded a contract to an insolvent company.

The Ministry of Defence assesses the legal and financial status of a company before a contract is awarded and monitors the financial health and performance of the company throughout the contract, taking action as appropriate.

It would not be normal for a contract to be placed with an insolvent company. However, if there was an overriding need to purchase goods from an insolvent company (for example, it was vital to the operational capability of the armed forces) then a detailed process would be followed, involving legal and financial experts, to evaluate the benefits against the risks before deciding whether to place a contract.

The number of contracts awarded to insolvent companies is not held centrally and this data can be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
5th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what his Department's policy is on awarding contracts to contractors whose tender is more expensive than the lowest quote.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) assesses all tenders for a requirement against a range of relevant criteria to ensure that the Armed Forces get the best capability at the best value for money for the taxpayer.

Contracts are only awarded following a detailed tender assessment process and, while criteria for each procurement will vary depending on the requirements, MOD commercial officers must be satisfied that these are met before a contract is awarded.

All tender documentation will include information on how the tenders will be evaluated and scored and the evaluation criteria will vary according to the requirement. One evaluation method is the lowest price method where the lowest priced tender that is technically and commercially compliant is deemed the winner. This is typically used in simple, routine procurements. A second evaluation method is the most economically advantageous tender method. Price is just one element of the overall value for money assessment and there may be occasions where a contractor who has submitted a more expensive tender is awarded a contract, for example, where the company offers a more effective capability. This will be assessed in accordance with the evaluation criteria detailed within the tender documentation

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
15th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that potential interference with air defence radar does not prevent the future development of offshore wind sites.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) remains keen to support the future developments of the offshore wind sector, as best it can. However, this needs to be balanced with its requirements to protect the UK and its airspace. MOD officials have regular liaison with representatives of the offshore wind sector on this matter, particularly through the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Aviation Management Board meetings. Where appropriate we will continue to liaise across the industry sector and wider Government, including BEIS and the Department for Transport.

The MOD is undertaking further analysis to consider the strategic objectives and understand any risks with our current and future military radar capabilities. We aim to conclude the first 'understand' phase in the spring which will set the scope, structure and timelines for any further phases of work that may be required. However, a way ahead in the immediate future is challenging and requires upgraded or new technologies, which are not currently part of the equipment programme.

15th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what discussions he has had with representatives of the offshore wind sector on the interaction between air defence radar and potential future offshore wind sites.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) remains keen to support the future developments of the offshore wind sector, as best it can. However, this needs to be balanced with its requirements to protect the UK and its airspace. MOD officials have regular liaison with representatives of the offshore wind sector on this matter, particularly through the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Aviation Management Board meetings. Where appropriate we will continue to liaise across the industry sector and wider Government, including BEIS and the Department for Transport.

The MOD is undertaking further analysis to consider the strategic objectives and understand any risks with our current and future military radar capabilities. We aim to conclude the first 'understand' phase in the spring which will set the scope, structure and timelines for any further phases of work that may be required. However, a way ahead in the immediate future is challenging and requires upgraded or new technologies, which are not currently part of the equipment programme.

14th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what representations he has received on the procurement of emergency airfield cover at Boscombe Down airfield.

Under the Long Term Partnering Agreement between the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and QinetiQ, the company provides year-round emergency airfield response cover at MOD Boscombe Down, including aircraft crash rescue. In addition, during flying activity, the MOD's Defence Primary Health Care provides emergency ambulance cover using a commercial enterprise. A competition to renew this service has been completed and is currently being reviewed. I am withholding details of the tenderers as their disclosure would prejudice commercial interests.

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
14th Feb 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what steps are being taken to ensure that those who tender for government contracts for his department are kept informed of the status of their tender throughout the process.

Standard documentation outlining the tendering process, including anticipated key activities and dates, is provided to all suppliers tendering for Ministry of Defence contracts. If there are successive rounds of negotiation or dialogue, tenderers are notified after each successive stage whether they have been selected to continue. All tenderers are subsequently notified of the final contract award decision.

Stuart Andrew
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
13th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when he plans to publish the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme Quinquennial Review.

The Ministry of Defence conducted a Quinquennial Review of the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme. This was published in February 2017 and can be found at the following address:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-armed-forces-compensation-scheme-quinquennial-review

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Ministry of Defence has not awarded any contracts, or made any direct payments, to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

Information concerning communications on current tenders is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

14th Dec 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department has had any communications with iNHouse Communications Ltd in connection with any current commercial tender process.

The Ministry of Defence has not awarded any contracts, or made any direct payments, to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

Information concerning communications on current tenders is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

8th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the annual cost is of the veterans badge.


The annual cost of Armed Forces Veterans' Badges from November 2014 to October 2015 was £44,655.

8th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what plans he has to introduce a National Defence Medal for all veterans.

The Committee on the Grant of Honours, Decorations and Medals (HD Committee) examined the proposals to institute a National Defence Medal (NDM) as part of the independent Military Medals Review in July 2014. The Committee was not persuaded that a strong enough case could be made at the time. Therefore the Department has no current plans to introduce a NDM for veterans.


At the conclusion of Sir John Holmes review, a series of papers were placed in the Library of the House (http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/business-papers/commons/deposited-papers/?fd=2014-07-28&td=2014-07-29#toggle-1168). One of these, ‘Revised National Defence Medal – Updated’, contains an estimate of the potential cost of awarding a NDM to all veterans who have completed four years of regular or Reserve Service or completed national service (back to 9 September 1945). Based on an approximate figure of seven million recipients the cost was estimated to be £475 million.


8th Dec 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the potential annual cost of awarding a National Defence Medal to all veterans.

The Committee on the Grant of Honours, Decorations and Medals (HD Committee) examined the proposals to institute a National Defence Medal (NDM) as part of the independent Military Medals Review in July 2014. The Committee was not persuaded that a strong enough case could be made at the time. Therefore the Department has no current plans to introduce a NDM for veterans.


At the conclusion of Sir John Holmes review, a series of papers were placed in the Library of the House (http://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/business-papers/commons/deposited-papers/?fd=2014-07-28&td=2014-07-29#toggle-1168). One of these, ‘Revised National Defence Medal – Updated’, contains an estimate of the potential cost of awarding a NDM to all veterans who have completed four years of regular or Reserve Service or completed national service (back to 9 September 1945). Based on an approximate figure of seven million recipients the cost was estimated to be £475 million.


1st Oct 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Governement, whether he is consulting on permitting a further two per cent increase to local authority precepts in order to fund social care.

My Department has now published the Local Government Finance Settlement technical consultation, which includes a proposal for an adult social care precept for local authorities with responsibility for adult social care of 2 per cent on top of the core council tax referendum principle. The consultation can be found on Gov.uk website.

Luke Hall
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
3rd Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how many jobs linked directly to the Coastal Communities Fund have been created in North East Lincolnshire.

North East Lincolnshire has received one Coastal Communities Fund (CCF) grant award to date. CoastNEL, the Coastal Community Team for North East Lincolnshire, was awarded a £3.8 million grant in 2017 to support the regeneration of Cleethorpes for the benefit of visitors, businesses and local residents.

The project is still ongoing and actual job creation figures will not be reported on until autumn 2019. It is, however, currently forecast to create up to 56 jobs directly, 379 jobs indirectly and to safeguard a further 10 jobs in the local economy.

16th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps he is taking to increase sustainable employment opportunities in coastal communities.

The Government is working in partnership with places to develop Local Industrial Strategies by Spring 2020 to ensure that all places, including coastal communities, can contribute to and benefit from growth and sustainable job creation through employment and skills policies.

Local Growth Deals are also providing coastal Local Enterprise Partnerships with funding to promote economic growth and job creation in their coastal communities.

Under the Coastal Communities Fund we have invested over £218 million in 354 projects across the UK since 2012. This is helping to create or safeguard over 18,000 UK jobs and generate £363 million in new visitor spend. We are undertaking an evaluation of the projects funded to date to review their effectiveness in delivering sustainable economic growth and jobs to inform any future funding rounds.

The Town Deal for Greater Grimsby, announced in July 2018, is helping to drive economic growth and employment creation in the area. This includes investment in the regeneration of Grimsby town centre and Cleethorpes, infrastructure to unlock strategic employment sites, and investment in training facilities to improve specialist skills and employment opportunities.

16th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps he is taking to ensure the coastal communities fund creates sustainable employment opportunities in coastal towns.

The Government is working in partnership with places to develop Local Industrial Strategies by Spring 2020 to ensure that all places, including coastal communities, can contribute to and benefit from growth and sustainable job creation through employment and skills policies.

Local Growth Deals are also providing coastal Local Enterprise Partnerships with funding to promote economic growth and job creation in their coastal communities.

Under the Coastal Communities Fund we have invested over £218 million in 354 projects across the UK since 2012. This is helping to create or safeguard over 18,000 UK jobs and generate £363 million in new visitor spend. We are undertaking an evaluation of the projects funded to date to review their effectiveness in delivering sustainable economic growth and jobs to inform any future funding rounds.

The Town Deal for Greater Grimsby, announced in July 2018, is helping to drive economic growth and employment creation in the area. This includes investment in the regeneration of Grimsby town centre and Cleethorpes, infrastructure to unlock strategic employment sites, and investment in training facilities to improve specialist skills and employment opportunities.

20th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what the timetable is for the publication of the independent review of disabled facilities grants.

The independent review of the Disabled Facilities Grant was published on 10 December 2018 and can be found at the following link: www.gov.uk/government/publications/disabled-facilities-grant-and-other-adaptations-external-review.

I welcome the review and the Government will be responding to its findings in due course.

20th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether he plans to provide support to owners of new-build leasehold homes who are charged fees other than ground rent by the freeholder.

The Government is committed to promoting fairness and transparency for leaseholders and freeholders. We want to ensure that consumers only pay for the services that they receive, that costs should be transparent, communicated effectively and that there should be a clear route to challenge or redress if things go wrong.

As announced on 21 December 2017, the Government will introduce legislation so that, in future, ground rents on newly established leases of houses or flats are set at a peppercorn (zero financial value).

In addition, on 1 April, the Department published its response to the recent call for evidence on Protecting consumers in the letting and managing agent market. Proposals include establishing a working group to take forward work on regulating letting and managing agents as well as to consider under what circumstances fees such as service charges, administration charges and other charges placed on properties are justified, how they should be presented to consumers and to explore the best means to challenge fees which are unjustified.


7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how many rough sleepers have died as a result of their homeless status between November 2017 and March 2018.

The death of any rough sleeper is a tragedy. That is why this Government has committed to halve rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminate it altogether by 2027. Establishing the causes of death for any person in the UK is a matter for medical professionals or coroners.

Local areas and homelessness services often hold detailed information about the people who sleep rough in their area, including about rough sleepers who have died where this information is available them.

We are overhauling the statutory homelessness data collection alongside the introduction of the Homelessness Reduction Act. This will give us better insights into the causes of homelessness and the support people need. The new statutory homelessness data collection will be called H-CLIC.

The first meeting of the Rough Sleeping and Homelessness Reduction Taskforce took place on the 7 March. The Taskforce will drive forward the implementation of a cross-Government strategy to reduce rough sleeping.

We have allocated over £1 billion through to 2020 to prevent and reduce all forms of homelessness including piloting a Housing First approach for some of the most entrenched rough sleepers.

7th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps his Department took to ensure local authorities had adequate resources to meet their Severe Weather Emergency Protocol duties between November 2017 and March 2018.

Homeless Link publishes annual guidance on the Severe Weather Emergency Protocol (SWEP) and it is our expectation that local authorities work together with partners to provide basic emergency accommodation to minimise the risk of harm to individuals when the temperature drops. I recently wrote to local authorities about the guidance on SWEP which can help them protect rough sleepers in their areas at this time.

No one should ever have to sleep rough and that is why the Government has committed to halving rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminating it altogether by 2027. The Rough Sleeping and Homelessness Reduction Taskforce will drive forward the implementation of a cross-Government strategy to achieve this. The Taskforce met for the first time on 7 March 2018 and have committed to publishing the strategy by July this year. We have allocated over £1 billion through to 2020, following the 2015 Spending Review, to prevent and reduce all forms of homelessness, including rough sleeping.

6th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the oral contribution of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government of 18 January 2018, Official Report, column 450WH, on supported housing, if he will publish the evidential basis for the timeframe reflecting the nature of support provided and an individual's journey and outcomes.

In defining the timeframe we sought the advice and views of a wide range of providers and stakeholders. We also took the sector Task and Finish groups views into account.

We are continuing to listen to the sector and are considering feedback through the current consultation which closed on 23 January.

23rd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what the timetable is for the Government to publish its response to the consultation on the Review of Supported Housing Funding which closed on 23 January 2018.

The consultations on the short-term accommodation grant and sheltered housing model closed on Tuesday 23 January 2018.

We will now consider all responses and the Government will provide a full response in the early summer of 2018. In the meantime we will continue to work with providers and local government on the details of the proposed funding models.

10th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how many Safeguarding Adults Reviews local authorities have commissioned as a result of the death of a rough sleeper in each of the last five years.

My Department does not collect this information.

However I am clear that no one should ever have to sleep rough. That is why this Government has committed to halving rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminating it altogether by 2027.

The recently announced Rough Sleeping and Homelessness Reduction Taskforce will drive forward the implementation of a cross-Government strategy to achieve this.

At Budget, we announced £28 million of funding to pilot the Housing First approach for some of the country’s most entrenched rough sleepers. This funding forms part of the £1 billion that the Government has allocated until 2020 to prevent and reduce homelessness and rough sleeping.

9th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, on what date the first meeting of the Government’s Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Implementation Taskforce will take place.

The date for the first Rough Sleeping Advisory Panel meeting is set for 1 February 2018 and will be chaired by the Minister for Housing and Homelessness.

9th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, on what date the first meeting of the Government’s Rough Sleeping Advisory Panel will take place.

The date for the first Rough Sleeping Advisory Panel meeting is set for 1 February 2018 and will be chaired by the Minister for Housing and Homelessness.

12th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what data his Department holds on winter deaths associated with rough sleeping.

No one should ever have to sleep rough. That is why Government has committed to halving rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminating it altogether by 2027. We have announced a new Rough Sleeping and Homelessness Reduction Taskforce, chaired by the Secretary of State, which will drive forward the implementation of a cross-Government strategy to tackle this issue.

We have allocated over £1 billion through to 2020 to prevent and reduce all forms of homelessness reduction including piloting a Housing First approach for some of the most entrenched rough sleepers.

We expect local authorities to work closely with the voluntary sector to provide basic emergency accommodation to minimise the risk of harm to individuals when the temperature drops.

Our new Homelessness Advice and Support Team, drawn from local authorities and the homelessness sector, are providing targeted challenge and support to help local authorities to improve their response to homelessness, including on cold weather provision for rough sleepers.

In certain cases where a rough sleeper dies on the streets, local authorities can commission a Safeguarding Adults Review. This process is carried out to consider what agencies and individuals could have done differently to prevent harm or death.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
12th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, when he plans to start the consultation on his proposals to limit increases for social rents to CPI + 1 for five years from 2020.

The Government has announced plans to set a long term rent deal for housing associations and councils. Under the proposal announced in October, annual social rent increases will be limited to CPI+1 per cent for 5 years from 2020. This will be reflected in a draft direction from the Secretary of State to the Social Housing Regulator, which the Government will consult on in 2018 with a view to issuing the direction before the end of 2018.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
12th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what the timetable is for a direction to be given to the Social Housing Regulator to limit rent increases to CPI + 1 for five years from 2020.

The Government has announced plans to set a long term rent deal for housing associations and councils. Under the proposal announced in October, annual social rent increases will be limited to CPI+1 per cent for 5 years from 2020. This will be reflected in a draft direction from the Secretary of State to the Social Housing Regulator, which the Government will consult on in 2018 with a view to issuing the direction before the end of 2018.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
14th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 3 November 2017 to Question 110466, on private rented housing: homelessness, what projects were previously notified of the measures he is using in considering the effectiveness of existing projects operating across the country.

There are various different types of mediated access schemes being operated across the country, including Help to Rent projects and Guarantee deposit schemes. We are considering how best to take forward a mediated access in the context of our overall homelessness prevention approach.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
14th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 3 November 2017 to Question 110466, on private rented housing: homelessness, in what way he is considering the effectiveness of existing projects operating across the country.

There are various different types of mediated access schemes being operated across the country, including Help to Rent projects and Guarantee deposit schemes. We are considering how best to take forward a mediated access in the context of our overall homelessness prevention approach.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
14th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 3 November 2017 to Question 110466, on private rented housing: homelessness, which projects are included in his consideration of the effectiveness of existing projects.

There are various different types of mediated access schemes being operated across the country, including Help to Rent projects and Guarantee deposit schemes. We are considering how best to take forward a mediated access in the context of our overall homelessness prevention approach.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
14th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 3 November 2017 to Question 110466, on private rented housing: homelessness, what the timetable is for the conclusion and publication of his consideration of the effectiveness of existing projects.

There are various different types of mediated access schemes being operated across the country, including Help to Rent projects and Guarantee deposit schemes. We are considering how best to take forward a mediated access in the context of our overall homelessness prevention approach.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
6th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, with reference to his Department's consultation paper, Funding supported housing, published on 31 October 2017, whether the current projections of future need take account of population growth and demographic changes.

Government is committed to boosting the provision of much-needed supported housing. Since 2011, we have delivered 27,000 units of specialist and general housing for disabled, vulnerable and older people. We announced £400 million of funding through the Autumn 2015 Spending Review to deliver new specialist affordable homes. To date, the Department of Health has committed around £200 million to build over 6,000 supported homes through the Care and Support Specialised Housing (CASSH) Fund, again for older people, adults with physical disabilities, learning difficulties or mental health needs.

Our new funding model, announced on 31 October, retains funding for the two types of long-term supported housing in the welfare system – that is housing primarily for older people and housing for those who need on-going support, like vulnerable people with long-term mental ill health. This will give providers the certainty they need in order to invest in future supply.

In order to protect short-term supported housing provision, we are ring-fencing grant funding and intend to keep it ring-fenced into the long-term. Funding here will be at the same level it would have been through the welfare system in the first year of introduction of the new model in 2020-21. Budgets are not yet set for years beyond Spending Review settlements but future funding allocations for short-term accommodation will take account of the costs of provision and demand for services. Our assessment of this will take account of local authority strategic plans for supported housing - these plans will include local current and future needs and provision assessments. It will also take account of any modelling and projections of required future provision that may prove helpful including the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Department of Health commissioned research by the Personal Social Services Research Unit of the London School of Economics (2017), Projected demand for supported housing in Great Britain 2015 to 2030, as referenced in our policy statement of 31 October.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
6th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the current shortfall in mental health places in supported housing.

Government is committed to boosting the provision of much-needed supported housing. Since 2011, we have delivered 27,000 units of specialist and general housing for disabled, vulnerable and older people. We announced £400 million of funding through the Autumn 2015 Spending Review to deliver new specialist affordable homes. To date, the Department of Health has committed around £200 million to build over 6,000 supported homes through the Care and Support Specialised Housing (CASSH) Fund, again for older people, adults with physical disabilities, learning difficulties or mental health needs.

Our new funding model, announced on 31 October, retains funding for the two types of long-term supported housing in the welfare system – that is housing primarily for older people and housing for those who need on-going support, like vulnerable people with long-term mental ill health. This will give providers the certainty they need in order to invest in future supply.

In order to protect short-term supported housing provision, we are ring-fencing grant funding and intend to keep it ring-fenced into the long-term. Funding here will be at the same level it would have been through the welfare system in the first year of introduction of the new model in 2020-21. Budgets are not yet set for years beyond Spending Review settlements but future funding allocations for short-term accommodation will take account of the costs of provision and demand for services. Our assessment of this will take account of local authority strategic plans for supported housing - these plans will include local current and future needs and provision assessments. It will also take account of any modelling and projections of required future provision that may prove helpful including the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Department of Health commissioned research by the Personal Social Services Research Unit of the London School of Economics (2017), Projected demand for supported housing in Great Britain 2015 to 2030, as referenced in our policy statement of 31 October.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
6th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what plans he has to address the shortfall in mental health supported housing.

Government is committed to boosting the provision of much-needed supported housing. Since 2011, we have delivered 27,000 units of specialist and general housing for disabled, vulnerable and older people. We announced £400 million of funding through the Autumn 2015 Spending Review to deliver new specialist affordable homes. To date, the Department of Health has committed around £200 million to build over 6,000 supported homes through the Care and Support Specialised Housing (CASSH) Fund, again for older people, adults with physical disabilities, learning difficulties or mental health needs.

Our new funding model, announced on 31 October, retains funding for the two types of long-term supported housing in the welfare system – that is housing primarily for older people and housing for those who need on-going support, like vulnerable people with long-term mental ill health. This will give providers the certainty they need in order to invest in future supply.

In order to protect short-term supported housing provision, we are ring-fencing grant funding and intend to keep it ring-fenced into the long-term. Funding here will be at the same level it would have been through the welfare system in the first year of introduction of the new model in 2020-21. Budgets are not yet set for years beyond Spending Review settlements but future funding allocations for short-term accommodation will take account of the costs of provision and demand for services. Our assessment of this will take account of local authority strategic plans for supported housing - these plans will include local current and future needs and provision assessments. It will also take account of any modelling and projections of required future provision that may prove helpful including the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Department of Health commissioned research by the Personal Social Services Research Unit of the London School of Economics (2017), Projected demand for supported housing in Great Britain 2015 to 2030, as referenced in our policy statement of 31 October.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
31st Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, whether his Department actively encourages registered providers or local councils to pursue or support mergers between social housing providers.

It is for the Board of a housing association to make these decisions. The Housing White Paper published in February encouraged housing associations to make every effort to improve their efficiency, in order to release additional resources for house-building.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
31st Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment his Department has made of the merits of mergers between registered providers of social housing.

It is for the Board of a housing association to make these decisions. The Housing White Paper published in February encouraged housing associations to make every effort to improve their efficiency, in order to release additional resources for house-building.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
31st Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of help to rent projects de-risking the private rented sector for homeless households.

Help to rent projects play an important role in enabling homeless people to access the private rented sector. My officials and I are currently considering the effectiveness of existing projects operating across the country.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
10th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, with reference to the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health, published in February 2016, what progress has been made on building the evidence base on specialist housing support for vulnerable people with mental health problems.

Developing a workable and sustainable funding model for supported housing is a priority for the Government. We have been listening to the sector through our earlier public consultation on this issue, and we have also been taking stock of the joint DCLG/DWP Select Committee report on supported housing. We know the supported housing sector needs certainty to help it continue to plan and deliver new much needed supported housing. We will set out further details on our plans later in the autumn.

The Government welcomed the Mental Health Taskforce’s report, the 'Five Year Forward View for Mental Health', and accepted all of the recommendations in its response to this report in January 2017, noting (as regards recommendation 10) that the case for using specialist housing support for vulnerable people with mental ill health is already established, and that the challenge now would be to translate this into action. To date, the Department of Health has committed around £200 million through the Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund, to build over 6,000 new homes, including for people will mental ill health.

The ‘Supported Accommodation Review’, which was jointly commissioned by DCLG and DWP and published in November 2016, estimated the scale, scope and cost of the supported housing sector in Great Britain, across a wide range of client groups including housing for people with mental ill health. The review found that units of supported housing for those with mental health support needs accounted for approximately 5% of total provision of supported accommodation (equating to approximately 33,000 units across Great Britain). A link to the review is here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/supported-accommodation-review.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
10th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, when he plans formally to respond to the Work and Pensions and Communities and Local Government Select Committees' joint report on the future of supported housing.

Developing a workable and sustainable funding model for supported housing is a priority for the Government. We have been listening to the sector through our earlier public consultation on this issue, and we have also been taking stock of the joint DCLG/DWP Select Committee report on supported housing. We know the supported housing sector needs certainty to help it continue to plan and deliver new much needed supported housing. We will set out further details on our plans later in the autumn.

The Government welcomed the Mental Health Taskforce’s report, the 'Five Year Forward View for Mental Health', and accepted all of the recommendations in its response to this report in January 2017, noting (as regards recommendation 10) that the case for using specialist housing support for vulnerable people with mental ill health is already established, and that the challenge now would be to translate this into action. To date, the Department of Health has committed around £200 million through the Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund, to build over 6,000 new homes, including for people will mental ill health.

The ‘Supported Accommodation Review’, which was jointly commissioned by DCLG and DWP and published in November 2016, estimated the scale, scope and cost of the supported housing sector in Great Britain, across a wide range of client groups including housing for people with mental ill health. The review found that units of supported housing for those with mental health support needs accounted for approximately 5% of total provision of supported accommodation (equating to approximately 33,000 units across Great Britain). A link to the review is here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/supported-accommodation-review.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many letting agents have been fined for breaching the Consumer Rights Act 2015 since it came into force.

The Department does not hold this information. Local authorities are responsible for enforcing the requirements on letting agents under the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

The Secretary of State for the Department of Communities and Local Government announced on 1 October, that the Government will require all letting agents to register with an appropriate organisation to give landlords and tenants confidence that their agent is meeting minimum standards and complying with their legal responsibilities. The Government will also shortly publish the draft Tenant Fees Bill to set out its approach to banning letting fees to tenants in England.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many fines have been levied on letting agents in England for breaches of the Consumer Rights Act 2015 since it came into force.

The Department does not hold this information. Local authorities are responsible for enforcing the requirements on letting agents under the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

The Secretary of State for the Department of Communities and Local Government announced on 1 October, that the Government will require all letting agents to register with an appropriate organisation to give landlords and tenants confidence that their agent is meeting minimum standards and complying with their legal responsibilities. The Government will also shortly publish the draft Tenant Fees Bill to set out its approach to banning letting fees to tenants in England.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of people who require adapted housing in England in 2016-17.

The Government recognises the critical importance housing adaptations have in sustaining wellbeing and helping older and disabled people to live independently. Since 2010 we have invested over £1 billion in the Disabled Facilities Grant, providing around 250,000 adaptations to older and disabled people's homes in England. We secured a year on year increase for the Disabled Facilities Grant over the Spending Review, meaning that the grant will increase 79% in 2016-17 to £394 million, rising to over £500 million by 2020.

We also acknowledged the vital part adaptations play in the integration of housing, health and social care by incorporating Disabled Facilities Grant into the Better Care Fund in 2015.

Most recent data on the number of homes needing adaptations will be available in the 2014-15 English Housing Survey, due for publication in July 2016.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of adapted properties in England.

Most recent data on the number of homes with adaptations that met the requirements of one or more occupants with a long term illness or disability will be available in the 2014-15 English Housing Survey, due for publication in July 2016.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assistance his Department provides for homeless people unable to provide documentation and information on previous tenancies to help them secure new tenancies.

Our ‘How to Rent’ guide, updated in February 2016 sets out the types of documents landlords and agents often ask from tenants when looking for new properties. They include confirmation of a tenant's identity, immigration status, credit history and possibly employment status. Private landlords and letting agents operate on a commercial basis and they will decide which documents to request from prospective tenants based on their individual circumstances.

The Government has provided a wide range of documents which can be accepted in Right to Rent checks in order not to disadvantage people who lack access to standard forms of identification such as passports and residence permits. Special consideration has been given to what documentation is available to people trying to escape homelessness, those fleeing domestic violence, ex-service people, and those leaving the prison system.

Victims of domestic abuse who are staying in a refuge or hostel are exempt from the Right to Rent scheme. Those not in a hostel or refuge can also use a number of less standard documents to prove their right to rent. Acceptable documents include documents which should be accessible without having to return to a previous address, such as a letter from either their employer, a British passport holder, or local authority.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
22nd Apr 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assistance his Department provides for domestic violence victims unable to provide documentation and information on previous tenancies to help them secure new tenancies.

Victims of domestic abuse who are staying in a refuge or hostel are exempt from the Right to Rent scheme checks. Those not in a hostel or refuge can also use a number of less standard documents to prove their right to rent.

Domestic abuse is a devastating crime and we are determined to ensure that no one is turned away from the support they need. In the Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy published on 8 March, we set out our ambition to improve services for women suffering from domestic abuse, committing to a new Statement of Expectations to set out for the first time what we expect from local areas. To support this, we are launching a new two year fund for refuges and other forms of accommodation based support and to help local areas take the steps they need to meet the National Statement.

In last year’s Spending Review we secured new, dedicated funding of £40 million to support victims of domestic abuse. This builds on the £3.5 million funding in 2015/16 and is on top of the £10 million funding to strengthen the provision of safe accommodation in the last spending review period. Since 2003, the Government has provided funding to UKRefugesOnline to help victims of domestic abuse access the help and support they need.

There are a number of accommodation options for victims of domestic abuse. The Homelessness Code of Guidance for local authorities outlines the type of housing related and other support services that might be required. When making decisions, local authorities should sensitively consider which are the most appropriate options for each person on a case by case basis taking account of their individual needs.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the overall effect of changes to housing legislation and housing-related benefits which have come into force since 2010.

Government interventions are reinvigorating the housing market. The number of new homes delivered last year was up by 25 per cent on the previous year, the highest year on year rise for 28 years. Completions are up and housing starts at their highest annual level since 2007, with more than 277,000 affordable homes delivered since April 2010 .

We have announced a doubling of the housing budget to more than £20 billion over the next five years to support the largest housing programme by any Government since the 1970’s

Between 2000/01 and 2012/13, the Housing Benefit bill more than doubled to £24 billion and the cost to the taxpayer increased 50%.


Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many disabled social housing residents have moved out of their property in each year since 2009-10.

The number of disabled social housing tenants (including housing association tenants) who have moved out of their property in each year since 2005-6 is shown in the attached table.

These figures show that the number of social tenants who have moved has fluctuated over time, but the proportion of social renters who have moved has remained relatively constant.

The reasons for these moves are not known although we expect some disabled social tenants will have moved to better (e.g. adapted) accommodation. Some will have moved from a different tenure i.e.from owner occupation or the private rented sector), while others will have moved from another social housing property.


Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of changes in the level of services provided by housing associations to tenants since 2013.

As independent providers of social housing, it is for housing associations to decide on the level of services they wish to provide to their tenants.

Housing associations are regulated by the Social Housing Regulator against its standards framework; where there are issues of non-compliance with the regulatory standards the Regulator has powers to intervene.


Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
19th Jan 2016
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many disabled housing association residents moved out of their property in each year since 2009-10.

The number of disabled social housing tenants (including housing association tenants) who have moved out of their property in each year since 2005-6 is shown in the attached table.

These figures show that the number of social tenants who have moved has fluctuated over time, but the proportion of social renters who have moved has remained relatively constant.

The reasons for these moves are not known although we expect some disabled social tenants will have moved to better (e.g. adapted) accommodation. Some will have moved from a different tenure i.e.from owner occupation or the private rented sector), while others will have moved from another social housing property.


Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
19th Oct 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the homelessness prevention grant.

The Homelessness Prevention Grant is part of our £500 million investment in local authority and voluntary sector homelessness services. It has helped local authorities to prevent 935,800 households from becoming homeless since 2010.

Marcus Jones
Vice Chamberlain (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
26th Jun 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the potential effects of changes to planning permission for onshore wind projects on investment in the offshore wind sector.

I refer the hon. Member to the Written Ministerial Statement of 18 June 2015, HCWS42, which sets out that the new planning considerations apply to planning applications for onshore wind development in England involving one or more wind turbines and do not apply to offshore wind projects.

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what the timetable is for the Government to publish its response to the consultation on the Review of Supported Housing Funding which closed on 23 January 2018.

The consultations on the short-term accommodation grant and sheltered housing model closed on Tuesday 23 January 2018.

We will now consider all responses and the Government will provide a full response in the early summer of 2018. In the meantime we will continue to work with providers and local government on the details of the proposed funding models.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what estimate he has made of the number of adapted properties in England.

Most recent data on the number of homes with adaptations that met the requirements of one or more occupants with a long term illness or disability will be available in the 2014-15 English Housing Survey, due for publication in July 2016.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
1st Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what recent assessment he has made of the susceptibility of the lasting power of attorney process to fraud.

OPG are aware of 2 cases of the fraudulent creation of LPAs in the last 6 months – out of over 890,000 registered in 2018/19. We are not aware of any concerns of fraud being raised with the OPG in relation to the process of creating LPAs in the previous 5 years. Both cases have been thoroughly investigated and a lessons learned exercise conducted – part of which was an assessment of the process of registering an LPA. We have extremely good working relationships with the financial and legal sectors – and work closely with them to ensure that our processes together do all they can to eliminate fraud.

As of 31st March 2019, OPG had 3,906,416 powers of attorney and deputyship orders on its register and in the financial year 2018/19 we undertook 2,883 investigations covering a whole range of issues. This represented 0.07% of the total powers on the register. And only in 25% of those cases was there any need for court action in relation to the deputy or attorney albeit not all court applications were for removal of an attorney or deputy, some applications relate to requests for information or clarifying a person’s capacity. Where, as a result of an investigation, OPG has evidence that fraud may have taken place we will make a referral to the relevant police authority.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will seek to quash convictions for child prostitution of any victim of child abuse.

There is not an offence of child prostitution. Section 1 of the Street Offences Act was amended by section 68(7) of the Serious Crime Act 2015 so that the offence of loitering or soliciting applies only to persons aged 18 or over. In so doing, it recognises children as victims in such circumstances.

Before the statutory amendment was introduced the legislation applied equally to adults and children, although policing guidance and legal guidance to prosecutors advised that it was not in the public interest to prosecute anyone under the age of 18. The legislation in 2015 confirmed the position in law.

The Secretary of State does not have the power to quash a conviction and there are currently no plans to extend the statutory pardon scheme for historical criminal convictions, including those for child prostitution.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, whether her Department is in communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd in relation to any ongoing commercial tender process.

Between April 2011 and March 2016 the Ministry of Justice has not awarded any contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd.

The information requested cannot be disclosed as it would prejudice the commercial interests of Ministry of Justice as well as the third party organisations currently taking part in tender exercises across the department.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, whether her Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

Between April 2011 and March 2016 the Ministry of Justice has not awarded any contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd.

The information requested cannot be disclosed as it would prejudice the commercial interests of Ministry of Justice as well as the third party organisations currently taking part in tender exercises across the department.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, whether his Department is in communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd in relation to any ongoing commercial tender process.

The Northern Ireland Office is not in communication with iNHouse Communications Ltd. in relation to any ongoing commercial tender process.

12th Jan 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, whether his Department has awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd in the last five years.

The Northern Ireland Office has not awarded any commercial contracts to iNHouse Communications Ltd. in the last five years.