Neale Hanvey Portrait

Neale Hanvey

Alba Party - Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath

4 APPG memberships (as of 25 Aug 2021)
Pensions, Restorative Justice, Unconscious Bias, Whistleblowing
Health and Social Care Committee
29th Jun 2020 - 25th May 2021
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Health Team Member)
19th Jun 2020 - 6th Feb 2021


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Monday 7th June 2021
Advanced Research and Invention Agency Bill
voted Aye - in line with the party majority
One of 2 Alba Party Aye votes vs 0 Alba Party No votes
Tally: Ayes - 263 Noes - 364
Speeches
Thursday 9th September 2021
Oral Answers to Questions

The continued roll-out of electric vehicles and the 25,000 charging point milestone is to be welcomed, but how confident is …

Written Answers
Monday 26th July 2021
Coronavirus: Contracts
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will publish details of the (a) individual …
Early Day Motions
Thursday 16th September 2021
Criminal Law
That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, praying that the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 (Designated …
Bills
None available
Tweets
Friday 17th September 2021
20:54
MP Financial Interests
Monday 7th December 2020
1. Employment and earnings
Payments from YouGov, 50 Featherstone Street, London EC1Y 8RT, for completing surveys:
EDM signed
Monday 6th September 2021
Turkish military action in Iraqi terrority
That this House notes the current Turkish military action in Iraqi territory against Kurdish forces, launched on 24 April 2021, …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Neale Hanvey has voted in 165 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Neale Hanvey Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

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

Sparring Partners
Matt Hancock (Conservative)
(12 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
(10 debate interactions)
Nigel Evans (Conservative)
(9 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Department of Health and Social Care
(32 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(15 debate contributions)
HM Treasury
(12 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Neale Hanvey's debates

Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath Petitions

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

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

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

Petitions with highest Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath signature proportion
Petition Debates Contributed

There should be a public inquiry into Government contracts granted during Covid-19. Many contracts have been granted without full and open procurement processes. A public inquiry would be able to ascertain whether contracts had been procured fairly and represent value for money for tax payers.

As the Coronavirus escalates, there are concerns that a trade deal between the UK Government and the US deal might not exempt our NHS, leaving it vulnerable to privatisation and in direct contradiction to promises this would not happen.


Latest EDMs signed by Neale Hanvey

16th September 2021
Neale Hanvey signed this EDM as the primary signatory on Thursday 16th September 2021

Criminal Law

Tabled by: Neale Hanvey (Alba Party - Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath)
That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, praying that the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 (Designated Scottish Sites under Section 129) Order 2021 (S.I., 2021, No. 1021), dated 8 September 2021, a copy of which was laid before this House on 9 September 2021, be annulled.
3 signatures
(Most recent: 17 Sep 2021)
Signatures by party:
Alba Party: 2
Scottish National Party: 1
19th May 2021
Neale Hanvey signed this EDM on Monday 6th September 2021

Turkish military action in Iraqi terrority

Tabled by: Chris Stephens (Scottish National Party - Glasgow South West)
That this House notes the current Turkish military action in Iraqi territory against Kurdish forces, launched on 24 April 2021, the Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide; believes that the assault is part of the genocidal policies of the Turkish State against the Kurdish people; is deeply concerned that the military …
17 signatures
(Most recent: 6 Sep 2021)
Signatures by party:
Scottish National Party: 8
Labour: 5
Alba Party: 2
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
Independent: 1
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 1
View All Neale Hanvey's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Neale Hanvey, 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.


Neale Hanvey has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Neale Hanvey has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

Neale Hanvey has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Neale Hanvey has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


64 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
1 Other Department Questions
20th Jul 2020
To ask the Prime Minister, if he will publish a response to EDM 689 on Conduct of the Prime Minister.

When I stood on the steps of Downing Street one year ago, I pledged to be a Prime Minister for every corner of the United Kingdom. Whether you are from East Kilbride or Dumfries, Motherwell or Paisley, I promised to level up across Britain and close the opportunity gap.

The last six months have shown exactly why the historic and heartfelt bond that ties the four nations of our country together is so important and the sheer might of our union has been proven once again.

In Scotland, the UK’s magnificent armed forces have been on the ground doing vital work to support the NHS, from setting up and running mobile testing sites to airlifting critically ill patients to hospitals from some of Scotland’s most remote communities. And the UK Treasury stepped in to save the jobs of a third of Scotland’s entire workforce and kept the wolves at bay for tens of thousands of Scottish businesses.

More than ever, this shows what we can achieve when we stand together, as one United Kingdom.

Boris Johnson
Prime Minister, First Lord of the Treasury, Minister for the Civil Service, and Minister for the Union
30th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what funding he has allocated to support charity-funded medical research.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave the Hon. Member for Central Ayrshire on 1st December 2020 to Question 121276.

Amanda Solloway
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions the Government plans to have with representatives of travel agencies on the steps that the Government plans to take to help assist and accelerate the recovery of the travel agencies sector as part of its implementation of the Tourism Recovery Plan.

We recognise the severe impact of COVID-19 on tourism, and have published the Tourism Recovery Plan to help the sector recover back to pre-pandemic levels and build back better for the future. The plan aims to recover domestic tourism to pre pandemic levels by 2022 and international tourism by 2023 - both at least a year faster than independent forecasts predict. The government will continue to engage with industry bodies, consumer groups, and businesses in the travel sector regularly – such as the Association of British Travel Agents, the Association of Independent Tour Operators and UKInbound – to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on the sector and support the sector's recovery from the pandemic.

Nigel Huddleston
Assistant Whip
15th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what the total value is of Government support made available to (a) the tourism sector and (b) travel agencies sector in (i) grants, (ii) loans and (iii) tax breaks to assist in their recovery from the covid-19 outbreak since the start of that outbreak.

We recognise the severe impact of COVID-19 on tourism, and have published the Tourism Recovery Plan to help the sector recover back to pre-pandemic levels and build back better for the future. The plan aims to recover domestic tourism to pre pandemic levels by 2022 and international tourism by 2023 - both at least a year faster than independent forecasts predict. The government will continue to engage with industry bodies, consumer groups, and businesses in the travel sector regularly – such as the Association of British Travel Agents, the Association of Independent Tour Operators and UKInbound – to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on the sector and support the sector's recovery from the pandemic.

Nigel Huddleston
Assistant Whip
13th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will extend the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme beyond 31 March 2021.

The Government is fully committed to supporting listed places of worship and has committed to the present level of funding until 31 March 2021. We recognise the importance of this scheme and the reliance which is placed on it. We are presently working through the implications of DCMS's Spending Review settlement with HMT and within DCMS. We will be able to provide an update shortly.

Nigel Huddleston
Assistant Whip
11th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will bring forward legislative proposals similar to those recently brought forward by the French Government to require that all new washing machines are fitted with microfilters to help prevent synthetic microfibres from entering rivers and oceans and consequently entering the food chain.

The Government currently has no plans to require manufacturers to install microplastic filters on new washing machines. We are working with industry to encourage improved environmental outcomes and reduce water pollution on a voluntary basis. We will continue to assess new and emerging evidence and consider the need for legislation in the future if the current approach is not successful.

Water infrastructure is recognised as an important pathway for contaminants, including microplastics, to the wider environment. The Government is working with the industry and scientific community to focus on research which addresses the evidence gaps in knowledge of the issues and the real world impacts these materials are exerting on our ecosystems and people.

Defra has published the outcome of research - Investigating the sources and pathways of synthetic fibre and vehicle tyre wear contamination into the marine environment . The report highlights the prevalence of tyre-wear particles and fibres from clothing in air/water and storm drain pathways to the marine environment. A key conclusion from this research was that there are many textile fibres in the air close to roads, particularly those with pedestrians, which would settle into waterways. Comparatively, there were fewer fibres entering the marine environment from waste-water treatment plants. Before considering options to prevent microfibres entering the water environment, such as washing machine filters, there needs to be more certainty about the impacts of policy measures designed to reduce microplastic fibres entering freshwater and marine environments.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
7th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what assessment she has made of the potential effect of the Government's proposed tariff structure on economic recovery for UK manufacturers after the transition period.

The UK Global Tariff (UKGT) is a tariff schedule tailored to the UK economy as a whole and balances the interests of UK consumers, producers and our wider trade objectives. In designing the UKGT, we have assessed all available evidence submitted as part of the public consultation in depth and considered a range of factors, such as the five principles set out in the Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018.

We will publish more analysis in the Tax Information and Impact Note (TIIN) alongside the legislation, as is standard practice.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
15th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he plans to allow UK citizens who have been fully vaccinated whilst working overseas, irrespective of location, to return to their families in the UK without requiring a hotel quarantine.

Anyone travelling to the UK from a red list country will be required to quarantine in a managed quarantine service, irrespective of vaccination status.

Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
11th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent discussions he has had with his French counterpart on recognition for UK driving licences in France after 31 December 2021.

At the end of 2020, the Department for Transport had successfully agreed arrangements with all EU Member States - including France - for the mutual recognition of photocard licences. As such, UK photocard licence holders will not need to carry an additional International Driving Permit when driving in France – nor any EU Member State. We have also secured interim arrangements with the French authorities which will allow UK licence holders resident in France, to continue to use their valid UK licence until 1 January 2022. We are working with the French Government to finalise a permanent licence exchange agreement.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to publish the covid-19 recovery plan for the aviation sector..

The impact of a second wave of COVID and the need for the Government to respond has impacted on the aviation sector.

The government has therefore announced through the Global Travel Taskforce, a number of measures to assist the sector to restart over the winter period. This includes the ‘Test to release for international travel’ (TTR) which will boost consumer confidence in air travel.

Following the successful implementation of these measures, the government will then put forward its strategic framework for the medium and long-term recovery of the aviation sector.

Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
20th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans he has in place to ensure that UK-based pilots with an EASA licence can continue to work unrestricted in the EU from 1 January 2021 without incurring the costs of converting their licence to maintain those licence privileges in EASA member states.

In the event that mutual recognition of EU Member State/UK pilot licences ceases at the end of the transition period, pilots with UK-issued licences who wish to fly EU-registered aircraft would need to transfer their licence to a European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) member state before the transition period ended, or subsequently seek a second licence from an EASA member state. The UK has no control over the charges that may be applied by an EASA Member State for this process.

Pilots currently holding a commercial licence from an EASA member state would need to seek a time-limited validation from the UK’s CAA to operate UK-registered aircraft outside the UK. The CAA has developed processes to make this as seamless as possible and with no associated cost.

20th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to protect regional connectivity in the UK following the collapse of Flybe.

The Government recognises the impact Flybe’s collapse and the subsequent COVID-19 constraints on services, regional airports, regional economies and connectivity across the UK. We are working with industry to identify where key routes are being re-established and we remain committed to supporting regional connectivity, recognising the importance of maintaining a thriving competitive aviation sector in the UK to deliver this. In May the Government announced a £5.7million funding package of measures,?temporarily supporting?two airlinks,?from Belfast and Londonderry to London,?and associated airport services at City of Derry Airport and Belfast City Airport. The funding package ensured that lifeline connectivity services continued to both Belfast and Londonderry during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Government has provided an unprecedented package of measures to support the UK economy. These measures are open to businesses across the aviation sector and include a Bank of England scheme for firms to raise capital, Time to Pay flexibilities with tax bills, financial support for employees and VAT deferrals.?In exceptional circumstances, where a viable company has exhausted all options and its failure would disproportionately harm the economy, the Government is prepared to enter discussions with individual companies seeking bespoke support as a last resort. Any intervention would need to represent value for money for taxpayers. We will continue to engage with stakeholders across the sector, including regional airports, to understand the situations they face.

The Chancellor has announced that there will be a consultation on aviation tax reform. As part of this consultation, the Government will consider the case for changing the APD treatment of domestic flights, such as reintroducing a return leg exemption, and for increasing the number of international distance bands

The Government remains committed to supporting regional connectivity across all transport modes, as well as the importance of maintaining a thriving competitive aviation sector in the UK to deliver connectivity. The Department is currently working on a recovery plan for the sector out to 2025. The plan will have a strong focus on regional connectivity and will be developed in consultation with industry for an Autumn publication.

22nd Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the take-up rate of the Bereavement Support Payment since its introduction in April 2017.

It is not possible to accurately measure take-up of BSP, out of those who are eligible, by year as this would require monthly data on deaths by age and marital status.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the Johnson & Others v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Court of Appeal decision 22 June 2020, what steps her Department is taking to recompense universal credit claimants who experienced fluctuations of their income due to the method of calculating earned income prior to the changes brought into effect on 16 November 2020.

The legislation and arrangements we have put in place provide a remedy to satisfy the Court of Appeal’s Judgment and means that for future cases affected by this issue, monthly earnings will be reallocated to another assessment period, which means that only one set of earnings will be taken into account rather than two, and certain claimants will be able to benefit from any applicable work allowance.

The Court of Appeal’s judgment did not require the Department to apply the new arrangements retrospectively.

Will Quince
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
13th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the effect of the universal credit monthly assessment period on the financial stability of claimants.

Universal Credit (UC) is a calendar monthly assessed benefit that is paid monthly in arrears. This approach reflects the world of work, where the majority of all employees receive wages monthly.

Unlike the legacy benefit system, Universal Credit takes income and earnings into account in a way that is fair and transparent across all claimant circumstances, such as different frequencies in earnings and income received. The amount of Universal Credit paid reflects, as closely as possible, the actual circumstances of a household for each monthly assessment period, including any income and/or earnings reported by the employer during that period.

Monthly reporting allows Universal Credit to be adjusted on a monthly basis, which ensures that if a claimant's income falls, which results in a rise in their Universal Credit award, they will not have to wait several months to receive it.

In addition, Work Coaches are trained to gauge claimants’ financial needs from their first contact and can refer them to more specialist support for personal budgeting, money guidance and debt advice if required, including through the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS).

Will Quince
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
25th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many workers in Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency (a) are receiving auto-enrolment pension contributions through Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and (b) have stopped contributing towards a pension since the beginning of the covid-19 outbreak.

Complete data is not available on the employees for whom employers have claimed automatic enrolment minimum pension contributions under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. This is because the necessary information is collected at employee level only on claims where 100 or more staff are furloughed.

An estimate of the number of employees resident in the Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency that are no longer making employee pension contributions, via their employers payroll, is not currently available and to provide one would incur disproportionate cost.

In the Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath constituency, since 2012, approximately 7,000 eligible jobholders have been automatically enrolled and 2,310 employers have met their duties.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
13th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the oral contribution of the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health and Social Care of 7 July 2021, Official Report, column 920, if he will specify the key tests that are required to be met in relation to emergency contracting procedures.

‘Procurement Policy Note 01/20: Responding to COVID-19’ guidance on public procurement regulations is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/procurement-policy-note-0120-responding-to-covid-19

Authorities are allowed to procure goods, services and works with extreme urgency in exceptional circumstances using regulation 32(2)(c) under the Public Contract Regulations 2015. The Department must demonstrate on a case by case basis that it is satisfied the tests set out in the guidance permitting use of the negotiated procedure without prior publication have been met. The Regulations state that the Department should ensure there are genuine reasons for extreme urgency; the events that have led to the need for extreme urgency were unforeseeable; it is impossible to comply with the usual timescales in the Public Contract Regulations; and the situation is not attributable to the contracting authority.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what his most recent estimate is of the total number of (a) items of personal protective equipment, (b) face masks and (c) surgical gowns procured during the covid-19 outbreak which could not be used by the NHS as a result of them failing to meet appropriate standards of safety; and what the cost involved in each case was.

The data is not available in the format requested.

The Department is taking steps such as repurposing or recycling items and seeking to recover costs in instances where contracts have resulted in the supply of substandard personal protective equipment.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will publish details of the (a) individual covid-19 related public procurement contracts which were awarded using emergency contracting procedures, (b) value of each of those contracts and (c) purpose for which each of those contracts was awarded in each month since March 2020.

Regulation 32(2)(c) of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 allows for the direct award of a contract without advertising in cases of “extreme urgency brought about by events unforeseeable by the contracting authority”. The majority of COVID-19 related contracts were awarded using this Regulation. However, to obtain the information requested incur disproportionate cost. The Department’s data does not distinguish between the use of this Regulation and other procedures under the Regulations which also allow for a direct award.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many and what proportion of covid-19 related public procurement contracts were awarded using emergency contracting procedures; and what the total value of those contracts is.

Regulation 32(2)(c) of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 allows for the direct award of a contract without advertising in cases of “extreme urgency brought about by events unforeseeable by the contracting authority”. The majority of COVID-19 related contracts were awarded using this Regulation. However, to obtain the information requested incur disproportionate cost. The Department’s data does not distinguish between the use of this Regulation and other procedures under the Regulations which also allow for a direct award.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what his most recent estimate is of the number of people who have received (a) one and (b) two doses of a covid-19 vaccine in (i) England, (ii) Scotland, (iii) Wales and (iv) Northern Ireland by (A) health authority, (B) age and (C) sex.

Data regarding the number of people who have received one and two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are available at the following link:

https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/details/vaccinations

As health is devolved, vaccination is managed by the health services in each nation and vaccination data is published in their respective dashboards. The Government is working closely with the devolved administrations to ensure an aligned approach to vaccine deployment across the UK.

Data on the number of vaccinations provided in England by one and two doses; age; sex; and health geographies is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/covid-19-vaccinations/

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
8th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 5 February 2021 to Question 122899 on Coronavirus: screening, in what format his Department (a) presents, (b) holds or (c) publishes data related to the information requested; what clinical or scientific evidence underpins his Department's policy on Innova lateral flow devices; and how much and what proportion of funding allocated to those devices has been disbursed.

The Government has published ‘Liverpool COVID-19 community testing pilot: interim evaluation report summary’, which is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/liverpool-covid-19-community-testing-pilot-interim-evaluation-report-summary/liverpool-covid-19-community-testing-pilot-interim-evaluation-report-summary

This is an interim report from an evaluation led by the University of Liverpool into the pilot of community open-access testing for COVID-19 among those without symptoms. A final assessment and a more detailed report on the effectiveness of mass testing and the data to support will follow in early 2021.

The Department cannot comment on individual contracts due to commercial sensitivity.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 22 January 2021 to Question 136640, what criteria will be used to determine who qualifies as the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill and should therefore be offered the covid-19 vaccination in priority group six.

Unpaid carers are included in the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s priority group six. This also includes those who are eligible for a carer’s allowance, or those who are the sole or primary carer of an elderly or disabled person who is at increased risk of COVID-19 mortality and therefore clinically vulnerable.

The Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for unpaid carers has now been published. The SOP draws on national and local sources for known carers, to help identify and enable them to be invited quickly for a vaccination, as well as making provision for those unpaid carers who may not already be known to the health and social care system to come forward.

The SOP is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/wp-content/uploads/sites/52/2021/03/C1182-sop-covid-19-vaccine-deployment-programme-unpaid-carers-jcvi-priority-cohort-6.pdf

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
13th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he was first made aware that Track and Trace activity was not automatically triggered by a positive lateral flow test; what steps his Department took in response to that matter; how many positive lateral flow test results were not referred to contact tracers; and what steps his Department is taking to (a) assess the risk of unchecked community transmission as a result of that matter (b) trace those people who were close contacts of someone who received a positive lateral flow test.

Contact tracing following a positive lateral flow device (LFD) test commenced on 27 January 2021 in England for LFD tests carried out in supervised conditions, in view of increased prevalence of COVID-19. Prior to this, contact tracing commenced following a positive confirmatory polymerase chain reaction test after a positive LFD test.

Data is not currently held on the number of positive LFD tests not referred to contact tracers for the period before 27 January. There are no plans to carry out a separate assessment of the implications for community transmission, as this is monitored on an ongoing basis. Nor are there plans to trace contacts of people who had a positive LFD test from this time.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure adequate staff across the (a) health and (b) social care sectors under the new UK immigration rules.

In August 2020 my Rt hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Home Department launched the Health and Care Visa for health and care professionals from overseas, giving them a faster and cheaper route to come and work in the United Kingdom. This visa route is conditional on having a job offer for an eligible role from an eligible sponsor. Overseas health and care staff are also either exempt from paying the Immigration Health Surcharge when applying for a visa or can claim a reimbursement.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
12th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to give vaccination priority to people who live with and care for clinically extremely vulnerable people.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) consists of independent experts who advise the Government on which vaccines the United Kingdom should use and provide advice on prioritisation at a population level.  For the first phase, the JCVI has advised that the vaccine be given to care home residents and staff, people aged over 80 years old and frontline health and social care workers, then to the rest of the population in order of age and clinical risk factors

Those who are in receipt of a carer’s allowance, or those who are the main carer of an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if the carer falls ill, should also be offered vaccination in priority group six.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
12th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect of the lengthened time between vaccine doses on clinically extremely vulnerable people who are immuno-compromised; and whether his Department plans to administer second doses sooner to those people.

The Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations (JCVI) advises the Government on which vaccines the United Kingdom should use and provide advice on prioritisation. After studying all the available data, the JCVI concluded that the first dose of both vaccines currently deployed provides substantial protection within two to three weeks of vaccination from severe COVID-19 infection.

The second vaccine dose is important to sustain the protection and extend its duration. In the short term however, the additional impact of the second dose is likely to be modest and most of the initial protection from clinical disease is after the first dose of vaccine. The four UK Chief Medical Officers agreed with the JCVI that at this stage of the pandemic prioritising the first doses of vaccine for as many people as possible on the priority list would protect the greatest number of at-risk people in the shortest possible time.

Operationally this means that second doses of both vaccines will be administered towards the end of the recommended vaccine dosing schedule of 12 weeks. This will maximise the number of people getting the vaccine and receiving protection within the next 12 weeks.

The JCVI’s statement on changing of the dose interval is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prioritising-the-first-covid-19-vaccine-dose-jcvi-statement/optimising-the-covid-19-vaccination-programme-for-maximum-short-term-impact

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
30th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of purchasing Innova lateral flow tests in 2021.

We are unable to provide information on the purchasing of Innova Lateral Flow Tests in 2021 as this is commercially sensitive.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the implications for its recent policy on mass testing asymptomatic populations and using lateral flow tests for access to care homes of its subsequent advice that swab testing people with no symptoms is not an accurate way of screening the general population, as there is a real risk of giving false reassurance. Widespread asymptomatic testing could undermine the value of testing, as there is a risk of giving misleading results.

Following the development of approved new technologies, NHS Test and Trace launched small scale pilots to allow more asymptomatic testing in populations where prevalence of COVID-19 was thought to be higher or where individuals are more at risk. Extensive clinical evaluation has been carried out on the lateral flow or swab tests. Evaluations from Public Health England and the University of Oxford show these tests are accurate and sensitive enough to be used in the community for screening and surveillance purposes. While false positives or false negatives can never be completely ruled out, the likelihood of a false positive remains low at approximately four in 1,000 people tested.

Extensive testing has shown lateral flow devices are suitable for use in care homes where they can help to identify people who are the most likely to spread the virus further and therefore support the prevention of transmission of the disease from staff and visitors.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether there is a process in place to record informed consent for the unlicensed use of Innova lateral flow tests.

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before prorogation.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how the design of the Liverpool Innova later flow test programme was developed; which research protocol was used to conduct the study; how informed consent was secured from participants of the study; and which Research Ethics Committee approved the study.

The Liverpool City testing pilot was developed in collaboration between NHS Test and Trace, Liverpool City Council, NHS Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group, Cheshire and Merseyside Health and Care Partnership and the 8th Engineer Brigade. This was a service evaluation and not intended as a research study. The Department and NHS Test and Trace liaised with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority over the use of the Innova lateral flow device in this post-validation pilot service.

The secondary analysis of data provided in a health protection activity is not classified as research and so does not require research ethics committee review. Where the gathering of additional information required interactions that were not a routine element of the pilot service, the local research ethics committee approvals were obtained.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
30th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to Innova lateral flow studies conducted in Liverpool, how many participants were double tested at the site with Innova lateral flow assay and PCR; how many participants were PCR positive; of those how many were Innova positive; how many participants were PCR negative; of those how many were Innova positive; how many participants were sent a PCR home testing kit when they were found to be Innova positive; how many of those test kits were returned; and how many of those tests were PCR negative.

We do not publish the information in the format requested.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
19th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the National Audit Office investigation into contracts for providing personal protective equipment during the covid-19 outbreak, which companies were awarded contracts after being introduced to a high-priority lane by (a) Ministers, (b hon. Members or Peers and (c) officials, including the private office of the Permanent Secretary of his Department.

The Government issued a public call to action to support the increased requirements of personal protective equipment (PPE). This resulted in over 15,000 suppliers offering their help and support.

The cross-Government PPE team considered that leads referred by Government officials, Ministerial private offices, Parliamentarians, senior National Health Service staff and other health professionals were possibly more credible and needed to be initially reviewed with more urgency. This was commonly referred to as a ‘priority’ or ‘VIP’ channel.

At the point of being prioritised these offers went into exactly the same due diligence, technical assurance, closing or contract negotiation and contract award process as all the other offers. About one in ten suppliers processed through this channel - 47 out of 493 - obtained contracts. We do not intend to publish the list of these suppliers as there may be associated commercial implications.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
2nd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what evidence EU citizens will be required to provide of settled status in order to receive NHS treatment after the transition period.

European Economic Area and Swiss citizens do not require Home Office confirmation of settled or pre-settled status to access National Health Service care. Settled or pre-settled status is an immigration status related to the European Union Settlement Scheme. This scheme is about securing an individual’s rights under the Withdrawal Agreement to reside in the United Kingdom beyond 31 December 2020.

Access to free NHS secondary care is unrelated to the EU Settlement Scheme and is entirely based on being ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK. Being ordinarily resident means, broadly, living in the UK on a lawful and properly settled basis for the time being, with non-EEA nationals who are subject to immigration control also required to have an immigration status of ‘indefinite leave to remain’. From 2021, the new global immigration system will apply the same requirements to migrants from the EEA and Switzerland.

Where a patient’s ordinarily resident status is not known, it will be for the NHS organisation that provides the treatment to assess this, based on the evidence of lawful, settled residence the patient provides.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
13th Jul 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the (a) Scottish Government, (b) Welsh Government and (c) Northern Ireland Executive either individually or collectively have requested additional borrowing capacity for the purposes of responding to the covid-19 outbreak.

As a result of the coronavirus pandemic and following requests from the devolved administrations for more certainty over their funding, including greater borrowing powers, the UK Government announced the unprecedented Barnett guarantee in July 2020. The guarantee initially provided £12.7bn of additional funding and was uplifted three times to reflect the changing situation – eventually reaching £16.8bn.

The guarantee provided the devolved administrations with the necessary funding certainty to decide how and when to provide support without having to wait for the UK Government to announce new funding first. It also meant that the devolved administrations benefitted from the strength of HM Treasury and the Bank of England rather than needing to borrow themselves.

Further information on the Barnett guarantee can be found on the following gov uk page:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/barnett-consequentials-and-the-barnett-guarantee/barnett-consequentials-and-the-barnett-guarantee

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
30th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the Answer of 4 February 2021 to Question 148019 on London Capital and Finance: Insolvency, what progress the Government has made on setting up a compensation scheme which will assess whether there is justification for further compensation payments in certain circumstances for some LCF bondholders.

I know that this has been a very difficult time for LCF bondholders. The Government has announced that it will establish a compensation scheme that will provide 80% of LCF bondholders’ principle investment up to a maximum of £68,000. The scheme will be available to all LCF bondholders who have not already received compensation from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

The Treasury is working to finalise the details of the scheme and guidance for bondholders on their next steps. The Government will provide further details on how the scheme will operate in due course. Bondholders do not need to do anything at this stage.

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) will administer the Scheme. They are committed to ensuring that payments are made to all eligible LCF bondholders within 6 months of the Compensation (London Capital & Finance plc and Fraud Compensation Fund) Bill securing Royal Assent. This Bill was brought forward by the Government at the earliest possible opportunity and was introduced on 12 May 2021.

I hope that the compensation offered by the Government scheme will offer some relief to the distress and hardship suffered and provide closure on this difficult matter.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the total value is of Government support made available to businesses in the (a) tourism sector and (b) travel agencies sector through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme since the start of the covid-19 outbreak.

HM Revenue and Customs publish statistics on the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) regularly.

The statistics published in August 2020 can be found on gov.uk:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/coronavirus-job-retention-scheme-statistics-august-2020.

These statistics report that employers classified under Travel agency and tour operator activities (Standard Industrial Classification 2007, group 79.1) claimed £214 million for staff on furlough between the start of the scheme and 31 July 2020.

Further statistics published on 3 June 2021 report that employers in the Travel agency and tour operator activities sector claimed £232 million from 1 November 2020 to 30 April 2021. These figures can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/coronavirus-job-retention-scheme-statistics-3-june-2021.

There are no figures available for the value of CJRS claims for Travel agency and tour operator activities from 1 August 2020 to 31 October 2020, nor for employers in sectors connected with tourism.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the total value is of the Barnett consequentials made available to the Scottish Government arising from UK Government expenditure for the provision of support to the (a) tourism and (b) travel agencies sector in (i) grants, (ii) loans and (iii) tax breaks to assist in the recovery of those sectors from the covid-19 outbreak since the start of the covid-19 outbreak.

As outlined in the Statement of Funding Policy, the Barnett formula determines changes to each devolved administration’s funding with reference to changes in DEL funding for UK Government departments. The Barnett formula is not typically applied on a sector level and does not apply to UK-wide schemes such as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

In total, since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic the Scottish Government has benefitted from £14.5 billion of additional funding through the Barnett formula. It is for the Scottish Government to decide how to use this funding.

A full breakdown of the devolved administrations’ block grant funding will be published shortly in this year’s iteration of Block Grant Transparency.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
15th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what the total value is of the Barnett consequentials made available to the Scottish Government arising from UK Government expenditure for the (a) tourism sector and (b) travel agencies sector through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme since the start of the covid-19 outbreak..

As outlined in the Statement of Funding Policy, the Barnett formula determines changes to each devolved administration’s funding with reference to changes in DEL funding for UK Government departments. The Barnett formula is not typically applied on a sector level and does not apply to UK-wide schemes such as the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

In total, since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic the Scottish Government has benefitted from £14.5 billion of additional funding through the Barnett formula. It is for the Scottish Government to decide how to use this funding.

A full breakdown of the devolved administrations’ block grant funding will be published shortly in this year’s iteration of Block Grant Transparency.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
19th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has plans to reassess the calculation of the compensation payments made to people affected by the Equitable Life scheme.

I refer the Honourable Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath to the answer I gave on 17 May 2021.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
19th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will make a statement on the methodology for the calculation of payments made through the Equitable Life Payment Scheme.

I refer the Honourable Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath to the answer I gave on 17 May 2021.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of making additional compensation payments to people affected by the Equitable Life scheme.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

I can assure the Hon Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath that relevant records are currently retained and will continue to be as long as it is legal to do so.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to (a) retain and (b) maintain data needed to make further payments to Equitable Life policy holders.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

I can assure the Hon Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath that relevant records are currently retained and will continue to be as long as it is legal to do so.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the accuracy of payments made under the Equitable Life Payment Scheme.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

I can assure the Hon Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath that relevant records are currently retained and will continue to be as long as it is legal to do so.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he plans to take in 2021 to help people affected by the Equitable Life scandal.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

I can assure the Hon Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath that relevant records are currently retained and will continue to be as long as it is legal to do so.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
11th May 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent discussions he has had with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) Ministers in his Department on (i) compensation and (ii) support for people affected by the Equitable Life scandal.

There are no plans to reopen the Payment Scheme or review the £1.5 billion funding allocation previously made to it. The Equitable Life Payment Scheme closed to claims in 2015 and further guidance on the status of the Payment Scheme after closure is available at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/equitable-life-payment-scheme#closure-of-the-scheme.

The methodology for calculating payments to Equitable Life policyholders was published in 2011 and can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/equitable-life-payment-scheme-design.

I can assure the Hon Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath that relevant records are currently retained and will continue to be as long as it is legal to do so.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to provide support for newly self-employed people who are ineligible for support from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

In delivering the SEISS, the Government has had to balance reaching as many people as possible, while protecting the public purse from the substantial risk of fraud by organised criminals and others who would seek to exploit these schemes. This has meant using data that HMRC already hold, in the form of Self-Assessment Tax Returns for the years up to and including 2018-19.

The SEISS continues to be just one element of a substantial package of support for the self-employed. The Universal Credit standard allowance has been temporarily increased for 2020-21 and the Minimum Income Floor relaxed for the duration of the crisis, so that where self-employed claimants' earnings have fallen significantly, their Universal Credit award will have increased to reflect their lower earnings. In addition to this, they may also have access to other elements of the package, including Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, mortgage holidays, self-isolation support payments and other business support grants.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the Answers of 25 January to Questions 137329 and 140287, what steps his Department is taking to overcome the practical issues that have prevented the Government from being able to include the newly self-employed in 2019-20 in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS).

In delivering the SEISS, the Government has had to balance reaching as many people as possible, while protecting the public purse from the substantial risk of fraud by organised criminals and others who would seek to exploit these schemes. This has meant using data that HMRC already hold, in the form of Self-Assessment Tax Returns for the years up to and including 2018-19.

The SEISS continues to be just one element of a substantial package of support for the self-employed. The Universal Credit standard allowance has been temporarily increased for 2020-21 and the Minimum Income Floor relaxed for the duration of the crisis, so that where self-employed claimants' earnings have fallen significantly, their Universal Credit award will have increased to reflect their lower earnings. In addition to this, they may also have access to other elements of the package, including Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, mortgage holidays, self-isolation support payments and other business support grants.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to publish details on the Government’s approach to the compensation scheme for London Capital & Finance bondholders.

I refer the Honourable Member to my answer given on 28 January to PQ UIN 143081. The Written Ministerial Statement of 17 December 2020 set out the three main channels through which London Capital & Finance plc (LCF) bondholders can seek compensation. These are the administration process, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), and the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) Complaints Scheme.

The Written Ministerial Statement also set out that, taking into consideration the specific and complex set of circumstances surrounding the collapse of LCF, the Treasury will set up a compensation scheme which will assess whether there is justification for further one-off compensation payments in certain circumstances for some LCF bondholders. The Government will announce further details in due course.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the report of the Independent Investigation into the Financial Conduct Authority’s Regulation of London Capital & Finance plc by Dame Elizabeth Gloster, published in November 2020, whether the 11,625 London Capital & Finance bondholders will be offered compensation for their losses.

I refer the Honourable Member to my answer given on 28 January to PQ UIN 143081. The Written Ministerial Statement of 17 December 2020 set out the three main channels through which London Capital & Finance plc (LCF) bondholders can seek compensation. These are the administration process, the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), and the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) Complaints Scheme.

The Written Ministerial Statement also set out that, taking into consideration the specific and complex set of circumstances surrounding the collapse of LCF, the Treasury will set up a compensation scheme which will assess whether there is justification for further one-off compensation payments in certain circumstances for some LCF bondholders. The Government will announce further details in due course.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
19th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to the Answer of 18 January 2021 to Question 137329 on Self-employed: Coronavirus, what steps he is taking to include the newly self-employed in 2019-20 in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

The Government recognises that taxpayers have faced immense challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic and it has prioritised delivering support to as many people as possible while guarding against the risk of fraud or abuse.

The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) is one of the most generous in the world and has received claims from almost 2.7 million people so far, totalling over £18.5 billion.

The practical issues that prevented the Government from being able to include the newly self-employed in 2019-20 in the SEISS, namely that HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) do not have access to the full set of 2019-20 self-assessment returns in order to verify their eligibility, still remain. The latest year for which HMRC have tax returns for all self-employed individuals is 2018-19.

The SEISS continues to be just one element of a substantial package of support for the self-employed which includes Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, mortgage holidays, self-isolation support payments and other business support grants.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of the recommendation of the Treasury Committee in its report Economic impact of coronavirus: Gaps in support that the Government undertake an urgent review to see how it can extend support to the newly self-employed who are unable to benefit from the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

The Government has acknowledged the recommendations of the Treasury Select Committee report, the Economic impact of coronavirus: Gaps in Support.

The Committee states in its report that it recognises the challenges of offering support to those who need it while implementing the safeguards required to mitigate the very real risk of fraudulent claims for support.

The practical issues that prevented the Government from being able to include the newly self-employed in 2019-20 in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) still remain. The latest year for which HMRC have tax returns for all self-employed individuals is 2018/19.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
30th Jun 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to help people with savings that have been affected financially by low interest rates since (a) 2020 and (b) the start of the covid-19 outbreak.

The pricing of financial products (including the interest rates offered on savings accounts) is a commercial decision for firms and the government does not seek to intervene in such decisions. Monetary policy, including recent interest rate cuts, is the responsibility of the independent Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Bank of England. The government therefore seeks to avoid commenting on the conduct and effectiveness of monetary policy.

The MPC’s primary objective, as set out in law, is to maintain price stability and its secondary objective is to support the government’s economic policy. The government believes that low and stable inflation is an essential pre-requisite for economic growth; providing certainty for households and businesses, helping them in their day-to-day economic decision making. The MPC is sensitive to the effect of low interest rates on savers and does consider the effect that their decisions may have on all households.

That said, the government is very aware of the challenges faced by savers in the current circumstances and has taken action on a number of fronts. In order to support savers and to reflect the government’s funding requirements during the Covid-19 pandemic, in April 2020 National Savings and Investments (NS&I) reversed planned rate reductions on NS&I’s variable rate products that were due to take effect on 1 May 2020. The government also announced on 1 May 2020 that the Lifetime ISA withdrawal charge will be reduced temporarily to 20% from 25% for any unauthorised withdrawal made between 6 March 2020 and 5 April 2021 recouping the government bonus and any interest or growth that may have accrued on that bonus, but with no further charge. Finally, the government has made significant changes over recent years to the way that income from savings is taxed, as part of its commitment to supporting people of all incomes and at all stages of life to save – this means that around 95% of people with savings income have no tax to pay on that income.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care on the effect of NHS pension rules on trends in the level of recruitment and retention of NHS staff.

The Government is listening carefully to concerns raised by senior doctors and NHS employers about the effect of limits on pensions tax relief. As part of a wider drive to ensure the NHS has the staff it needs to meet demand and transform care, the Government is carrying out an urgent review of the pensions annual allowance taper problem that has caused some doctors to turn down extra shifts for fear of high tax bills. Ministers at HM Treasury and the Department for Health and Social Care have met the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges and the British Medical Association as part of this review.

The review is also considering the responses to the Department for Health and Social Care’s consultation on pension flexibility. The review will report at Budget.

In addition, in September 2019 guidance was issued by NHS Employers informing employers of the short-term approaches that they could take to mitigate the effect of pension tax on their workforce this tax year. The NHS has also implemented an immediate measure to preserve clinical capacity amid the increased pressure on services during the winter period. This has enabled NHS employers to compensate NHS clinicians for the effect on their pensions of annual allowance charges incurred in 2019/20.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 5 March 2020 to Question 23401 which states that confirmation of settled or pre-settled status is not required to access NHS care, for what reason get hospital treatment is listed as a reason on the online EU settled status scheme form for proving one’s status to a requesting organisation/individual from 1 January 2021 onwards.

It is correct European Economic Area and Swiss citizens do not require Home Office confirmation of settled or pre-settled status granted under the EU Settlement Scheme to access National Health Service care.

Individuals may wish to rely on the fact they have been granted status under the Scheme as part of demonstrating their ordinary residence in the UK. The online View and Prove service therefore offers this as an option, should users wish to share their status for this purpose. It is entirely optional.

EEA and Swiss citizens continue to be able to use their passport or national identity card to evidence their right to access services and this will not change until 30 June 2021.

From 2021, when the new immigration system is introduced, EEA or Swiss patients will be required to demonstrate they are ordinarily resident in the UK, as is already presently the case for non-EEA nationals who are not the family member of an EEA citizen. They can do this by relying on the status they have been granted under the Scheme.

EEA nationals who do not have protected rights will be bound by the new global immigration system.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
3rd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether EU citizens that have not applied for settled status by 31 December 2020 will be able to remain in the UK after this date in the event that an agreement is not reached by the end of the transition period.

The UK left the EU on 31 January on the basis of the Withdrawal Agreement reached in October 2019. No further agreement is required and the protections for resident EU citizens provided in the Withdrawal Agreement are now underpinned by the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020 and by the EU Settlement Scheme.

In line with the Withdrawal Agreement, EU citizens resident in the UK by the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020 will be eligible to apply for UK immigration status under the EU Settlement Scheme. Their current residence rights under EU law will be protected during the grace period which will apply from 1 January 2021 until the application deadline of 30 June 2021. In addition, where a person has reasonable grounds for missing this deadline, they will be given a further opportunity to apply.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
2nd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether the funding allocated to charitable organisations to support vulnerable EU citizens to apply for EU Settled Status will be continued beyond March 2020.

The current grant funded organisations have had their funding extended until September 2020. In March, the Home Office announced a further £8 million would be made available to ensure funding for support organisations could continue through to March 2021. A new grant scheme has been launched and the bidding process started in May 2020.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
2nd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps will be taken by UK Border Force to ascertain whether EU citizens entering the UK have settled status after the transition period.

After the Transition Period EU citizens will not be routinely asked to prove they have been granted status under the EU Settlement scheme in order to re-enter the UK, but systems will be in place to allow border officials to make such checks where necessary.

Once the new points-based immigration system is fully introduced, Border Force will be able to identify those individuals granted status digitally without the need for the individual to provide evidence.

Kevin Foster
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
15th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, pursuant to the Answer of 14 October 2020 to Question 101319, how hon. Members should contact the MOD Prime Contractor for the remediation works at Dalgety Bay in order to seek clarification and updates on the progress of the licence application and subsequent stages of the project.

I will be happy to update the hon. Member directly regarding who to contact within the Ministry of Defence for updates on the progress of the licence application and the remediation works at Dalgety Bay, or indeed do so myself, and will be in contact with the hon. Member.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
9th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, on what date his Department submitted an application to Scottish Environmental Protection Agency for the requisite licence to commence remediation works of the Dalgety Bay contaminated shoreline site for work scheduled to begin in summer 2020.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is not the authority responsible for applying for a licence to Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) to commence remediation works at Dalgety Bay, the responsibility lies with the MOD Prime Contractor to whom the Final Contract Award was made in February 2020.

The Prime Contractor is intending to submit an application to SEPA by the end of November 2020.

Jeremy Quin
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence)
21st Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what training was provided by the UK to the Belarusian armed forces between 2018 and 2020.

The UK's engagement?with the Belarusian Armed Forces has been modest and driven by a need to build mutual understanding and trust on NATO's longest border with the CSTO. It includes Winter Survival Training, International Arms Control skills, Language Tuition and Peacekeeping.

Between 2018 and 2020, English language training has been provided (in support of Belarusian Personnel destined for UN Peacekeeping Operations) and one Belarusian Officer has completed the Advanced Command and Staff Course at the Defence Academy. Other training has focussed on Arms Verification techniques plus improving Governance in Defence as well as Command and Staff structures. Junior Leadership development alongside peers from other Former Soviet States has been delivered by UK personnel in the Czech Republic and Belarus. In 2018-19 the UK provided preparatory training for Belarusian Teams to participate in CAMBRIAN PATROL, an international military skills competition. Since 2018, the UK has trained around 60 Belarusians.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)
21st Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what specific police and military training is being provided by the UK to (a) Turkey, (b) Bahrain and (c) the Philippines.

We currently provide limited military training with Bahrain and the Philippines. As a NATO ally, our defence relationship with Turkey is one based on collaboration and partnering rather than direct training of their forces. All three countries routinely send officer cadets to UK military academies such as the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, Royal Britannia Naval College in Dartmouth and the Royal Air Force College in Cranwell. We have also been training Bahrain's security forces for a number of years to better counter the threat of Improvised Explosive Devices.

The Defence Education & Training we provide to foreign nations, stresses the need to respect International Law and the importance of adhering to international standards, for example with regard to human rights, human security, transparency & corruption, and civilian oversight and control of the Armed Forces.

In line with the policy of successive governments, we do not comment on operational policing matters.

James Heappey
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Defence)