Stephen Lloyd

Liberal Democrat - Former Member for Eastbourne

Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Work and Pensions)
16th Jun 2017 - 6th Dec 2018
Work and Pensions Committee
12th Jul 2010 - 27th Jan 2014


Division Voting information

Stephen Lloyd has voted in 1212 divisions, and 9 times against the majority of their Party.

23 Feb 2015 - Serious Crime Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 12 Liberal Democrat Aye votes vs 29 Liberal Democrat No votes
Tally: Ayes - 201 Noes - 292
26 Jan 2015 - Infrastructure Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 14 Liberal Democrat Aye votes vs 33 Liberal Democrat No votes
Tally: Ayes - 52 Noes - 308
26 Jan 2015 - Infrastructure Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 15 Liberal Democrat Aye votes vs 26 Liberal Democrat No votes
Tally: Ayes - 245 Noes - 293
24 Nov 2014 - Recall of MPs Bill - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 6 Liberal Democrat No votes vs 31 Liberal Democrat Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 204 Noes - 125
5 Jun 2013 - Badger Cull - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 9 Liberal Democrat Aye votes vs 30 Liberal Democrat No votes
Tally: Ayes - 250 Noes - 299
2 Nov 2011 - Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Liberal Democrat Aye votes vs 40 Liberal Democrat No votes
Tally: Ayes - 238 Noes - 301
7 Sep 2011 - Health and Social Care (Re-committed) Bill - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 10 Liberal Democrat Aye votes vs 31 Liberal Democrat No votes
Tally: Ayes - 255 Noes - 304
9 Dec 2010 - Higher Education Fees - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 21 Liberal Democrat No votes vs 27 Liberal Democrat Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 323 Noes - 302
9 Dec 2010 - Higher Education Fees - View Vote Context
Stephen Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 21 Liberal Democrat No votes vs 27 Liberal Democrat Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 323 Noes - 302
View All Stephen Lloyd 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
John Bercow (Speaker)
(26 debate interactions)
Theresa Villiers (Conservative)
(20 debate interactions)
Chris Grayling (Conservative)
(19 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Department for Work and Pensions
(139 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(63 debate contributions)
Department for Education
(53 debate contributions)
HM Treasury
(45 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Stephen Lloyd's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Stephen Lloyd

16th October 2019
Stephen Lloyd signed this EDM on Thursday 17th October 2019

Voter ID requirements at polling stations

Tabled by: Faisal Rashid (Labour - Warrington South)
That this House expresses deep concern at the Government’s announced plans to prevent people from voting unless they can provide photographic identification at the next election; notes that of the 44.6 million votes cast in 2017, there were just 28 allegations of in-person voter fraud and one conviction; recognises that …
71 signatures
(Most recent: 4 Nov 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 52
Scottish National Party: 10
Liberal Democrat: 4
Plaid Cymru: 2
Independent: 2
Green Party: 1
1st April 2019
Stephen Lloyd signed this EDM on Wednesday 25th September 2019

THE ROLE OF THE FINANCIAL CONDUCT AUTHORITY IN REGULATING LONDON CAPITAL AND FINANCE

Tabled by: Roger Godsiff (Labour - Birmingham, Hall Green)
That this House notes the report of the administrators on the affairs of London Capital and Finance, which went into administration in January owing more than £230 million to more than 11,000 bondholders; further notes that the Serious Fraud Office and other crime agencies are investigating what the administrators described …
29 signatures
(Most recent: 25 Sep 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 14
Conservative: 5
Liberal Democrat: 5
Democratic Unionist Party: 2
Green Party: 1
Independent: 1
Scottish National Party: 1
View All Stephen Lloyd's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Stephen Lloyd, 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.


Stephen Lloyd has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Stephen Lloyd has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

Stephen Lloyd has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Stephen Lloyd has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


123 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
5 Other Department Questions
3rd Jul 2018
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps she is taking to ensure that deaf and disabled people are able to stand for election and compete with other candidates on a level playing field irrespective of their chances of winning.

The Government believes that political parties have the prime responsibility for supporting their disabled candidates. There will be ways that the Government can help, which is why the Minister for Women and Equalities announced that the Government Equalities Office will, with others, undertake a programme of work in this area. Within 12 months, we hope to have political parties offering and advertising support, as well as solutions to help independent candidates. The funding of up to £250,000 that the Minister for Women and Equalities announced is intended to provide support for disabled candidates in the interim, while that programme of work is on-going.

We are working on what the interim funding will cover and how it will be delivered. Further details will be announced in due course.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
2nd Jul 2018
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the Written Statement of 17 May 2018, Access to Elected Office for Disabled People, HCWS695, whether a Deaf and Disabled People's Organisation or an alliance of Deaf and Disabled People's Organisations will be appointed to administer the funds announced to support disabled candidates wishing to stand in the local elections in May 2019.

The Government believes that political parties have the prime responsibility for supporting their disabled candidates. There will be ways that the Government can help, which is why the Minister for Women and Equalities announced that the Government Equalities Office will, with others, undertake a programme of work in this area. Within 12 months, we hope to have political parties offering and advertising support, as well as solutions to help independent candidates. The funding of up to £250,000 that the Minister for Women and Equalities announced is intended to provide support for disabled candidates in the interim, while that programme of work is on-going.

We are working on what the interim funding will cover and how it will be delivered. Further details will be announced in due course.

Victoria Atkins
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
23rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what the budget for the funding of adult skills in (a) the South East and (b) Eastbourne constituency is for (i) 2014-15 and (ii) 2015-16.

The Skills Funding Agency does not allocate funding to specific geographical areas. The Agency allocates funding to colleges and training providers, some of whom operate on very local geographic footprints, whilst others provide training and skills services to learners and employers across the country.

Colleges have all now received their allocations for 2015/16 and they will be in the public domain during June 2015.

Allocations for all providers in 2014/15, including those in the South East and Eastbourne areas, can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/sfa-funding-allocations-to-training-providers-2014-to-2015.

11th Feb 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, how many electricity customers switched to an independent supplier in each month of 2014.

Ahead of the Government’s ‘Power to Switch’ campaign to encourage people to switch supplier and save money the most recent industry switching data produced by Energy UK and Electralink shows the number of electricity customers switching to in an independent supplier in each month of 2014 to be:

Jan-14

86,253

Feb-14

90,056

Mar-14

101,002

Apr-14

119,022

May-14

108,904

Jun-14

99,199

Jul-14

82,690

Aug-14

84,107

Sep-14

113,883

Oct-14

114,275

Nov-14

85,741

Dec-14

70,364

17th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, if his Department will publish the apprentice pay survey for 2014 showing what apprentices are paid by age, gender, ethnicity, industry sector and apprenticeship level.

The 2014 Apprentice Pay Survey was published on .Gov.uk on 18 December 2014. The report shows levels of pay by age, gender, ethnicity, industry sector and apprenticeship level.

15th Jun 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the longest time was for a response to a freedom of information request in each Government department in each of the last three years.

The statistics collected and published centrally by the Government on the operation of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 within central government do not record the exact length of time taken to respond to individual requests. The statistics report on the number and proportion of requests that were answered within the 20 working days target, and on the number and proportion of requests that were answered within a permitted deadline extension.
Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
15th Jun 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of freedom of information requests have not been responded to within the 20 working days target by each Department in each of the last three years.

The Government publishes statistics on the operation of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 within central government, including on the number and proportion of requests that were answered within the 20 working days target, and on the number and proportion of requests that were answered within a permitted deadline extension. These can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/government-foi-statistics.
Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
12th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment each Department makes of the implications for climate change when making policy decisions.

Government departments undertake a policy impact assessment when developing new legislation. Where relevant, impact assessments include consideration of how a policy may decrease or increase greenhouse gas emissions. This is reflected in our strong progress on climate change – we have reduced emissions by 42% since 1990, while growing our economy by two thirds, and transformed our power sector with over half of our electricity now coming from low carbon generation.

24th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations he has made to the European Commission on its proposals to remove the exemption for stage lighting from EU energy efficiency regulations.

Officials from the Department attended the EU consultation forum in December 2017, the most recent discussion of this issue in Brussels, to discuss the latest Ecodesign lighting proposals. The Department has subsequently made representations to the European Commission in writing and in person to discuss the issue of stage lighting and potential solutions. I understand that representatives from the industry have also met with the Commission and will be drafting an alternative proposal for stage lighting for their consideration.

It should be noted that this is only a proposal at this stage and remains open for discussion, with a final decision on the draft regulation likely to be made towards the end of the year. We will continue to engage with both industry and the European Commission in the meantime.

10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress he has made in making written contracts of employment a legal requirement for all employees regardless of the terms and conditions of their employment in order to protect their employment rights; and if he will make a statement.

Employees who are employed for one month or more have a statutory right to receive a written statement setting out the main particulars of their employment.

Employees who do not receive a written statement, or who believe it to be inaccurate or incomplete, may refer the matter to an employment tribunal.

An employee is engaged under a contract of employment, which is brought into existence by an employee’s acceptance of the terms and conditions of employment offered by an employer. The terms of the contract may be expressed or implied, and if expressed, may be written or oral.

6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what information her Department holds on the number of council-funded library sites in the South East which have closed in the last 12 months.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport monitors proposed changes to library service provision throughout England, however the Department does not hold complete figures on the number of public library closures in each local authority in the South East of England in the last 12 months.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what information her Department holds on the number of council-funded library sites across England in each local authority which have closed in the last 12 months.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport monitors proposed changes to library service provision throughout England, however the Department does not hold complete figures on the number of public library closures in each local authority in England in the last 12 months.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how much lottery funding has been allocated to the Deaflympics programme in each year since 1997.

In 2012, Sport England invested £134,620 of National Lottery funding into UK Deaf Sport to support the UK team attend the Deaflympics at Sofia in 2013. No lottery funding has been allocated to Deaflympics by UK Sport. £75,000 of Exchequer funding was provided by UK Sport to support Deaflympics 2005.

12th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what the total investment was for each podium place won by the GB (a) Olympic Team, (b) Paralympic Team and (c) Deaflympics Team in the most recent games in which each team competed.

Team GB won 65 Olympic medals and Paralympics GB won 120 Paralympic medals at London 2012. The investment for that cycle can be found on UK Sport’s website here: http://www.uksport.gov.uk/sport/summer/

Team GB won four Olympic medals and Paralympics GB won six Paralympic medals at Sochi 2014. The investment for that cycle can be found on UK Sport’s website here: http://www.uksport.gov.uk/sport/winter/

In 2012, Sport England invested £134,620 of National Lottery funding into UK Deaf Sport to support the UK team attend the Deaflympics at Sofia in 2013. At the games, the GB team won two silver and three bronze medals.

12th Sep 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to raise the profile of deaf sport.

UK Deaf Sport is one of seven national disability sport organisations Sport England is working closely with to get more disabled people playing sport. Sport England has invested £281,974 into UK Deaf Sport to provide disability and impairment expertise to create more opportunities for deaf people to play sport regularly. This is part of Sport England’s £171 million investment into disability sport.

23rd May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how long the transitionary relief will last under the forthcoming increase in employer’s contributions to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme; and whether that relief will apply to all institutions that employ staff in that scheme.

The Department recently published its response to the public consultation on increases to teachers’ pensions employer contributions. All representations made by stakeholders have been considered, alongside all evidence relevant to the issues involved. The Department has decided to maintain its original proposal, to fund schools which receive public funding and Further Education providers for 2019-20, and not to fund Higher Education Institutions or Independent Schools. Funding beyond 2019-20 is a matter for the upcoming Spending Review.

The full response can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/funding-increases-to-teachers-pensions-employer-contributions.

In addition, it is worth noting that all registered Higher Education providers are required to meet the Expectations of the UK Quality Code for Higher Education, which sets a high baseline for quality and standards.

23rd May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department has made an assessment on the effect of the increase to the employer’s contributions to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme on the quality of education provided by Higher Education Institutions after the transitional protection has passed.

The Department recently published its response to the public consultation on increases to teachers’ pensions employer contributions. All representations made by stakeholders have been considered, alongside all evidence relevant to the issues involved. The Department has decided to maintain its original proposal, to fund schools which receive public funding and Further Education providers for 2019-20, and not to fund Higher Education Institutions or Independent Schools. Funding beyond 2019-20 is a matter for the upcoming Spending Review.

The full response can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/funding-increases-to-teachers-pensions-employer-contributions.

In addition, it is worth noting that all registered Higher Education providers are required to meet the Expectations of the UK Quality Code for Higher Education, which sets a high baseline for quality and standards.

23rd May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether non-UK EU students starting courses in September 2019 will be eligible for student loans.

As announced in July 2018, EU nationals who start a course in England in the 2019/20 academic year or before will continue to be eligible for ‘home fee’ status and student finance support from Student Finance England for the duration of their course, provided they meet the residency requirement. On 28 May 2019, at the EU Competitiveness Council, it was also announced that EU nationals who will start a course in England in the 2020/21 academic year will also continue to be eligible for ‘home fee’ status with student finance support for the duration of their course.

17th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the increase in the number of (a) looked after children, (b) child protection plans and (c) children in need.

Department for Education data shows that since 2013, the number of children in need, children on child protection plans and looked-after children at 31 March have risen by 7.1%, 24.5% and 10.7% respectively. The most common factors that present themselves in children’s social care assessments are domestic abuse and mental health. These have been consistently the top two factors for the years during which we have collected this data. Data on this is available in table C3 of statistical release ‘Characteristics of children in need 2017 to 2018’ at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/characteristics-of-children-in-need-2017-to-2018.

Nadhim Zahawi
Secretary of State for Education
17th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment his Department has made of the link between deprivation and demand for children’s services.

Demand for children’s services is associated with a number of factors including deprivation. The most deprived local authorities have more looked-after children (per 10,000 nought to 17-year-olds), and these rates have grown faster, than the least deprived local authorities.

In preparation for the Spending Review, to help ensure decisions are based on the best available evidence, the government is working with the sector to develop a sharper and more granular picture of demand for children’s services.

We are also working with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government as part of the government’s fair funding review of relative needs and resources, where new, up-to-date formulas are being developed to ensure funding distribution to councils is based on the best available evidence.

We welcome the contributions from the sector in this area including Newton Europe’s ‘Making Sense’ (2018) report and the Association of Directors of Children’s Services continuing research reports, ‘Safeguarding Pressures’ (2018).

Nadhim Zahawi
Secretary of State for Education
28th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to amend s1.3 of the Children Act 1989 to better define the classification of disability as incapacity to parent.

Whilst we constantly keep policy under review, we have not had discussions about bringing forward legislative proposals to amend section 1(3).

Nadhim Zahawi
Secretary of State for Education
17th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many families in Eastbourne would be entitled to free school meals under the pre-universal credit free school meals system.

We don’t differentiate between pupils eligible for free school meals under the pre-universal credit free school meals system and those only eligible due to the universal credit free school meals system. The number of pupils eligible for and claiming free school meals is published in the file “Underlying data: SFR28/2017” in the annual ‘Schools, pupils and their characteristics’ statistical release. For 2017 the information can be found at:

www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2017.

Information for earlier years can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-school-and-pupil-numbers.

Nadhim Zahawi
Secretary of State for Education
16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many applicants there were for the position of the new Ofsted lead subject inspector for religious education.

This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw. A copy of his reply will be placed in the library of the House.

16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what criteria the lead subject inspector uses to assess the teaching of religious education in schools.

This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw. A copy of his reply will be placed in the library of the House.

16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, who has held the responsibilities of the lead support inspector for religious education since the departure of the previous occupant of that post.

This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw. A copy of his reply will be placed in the library of the House.

16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when the new Ofsted lead subject inspector for religious education will be appointed.

This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw. A copy of his reply will be placed in the library of the House.

16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for how long the posts of lead subject leader for (a) mathematics, (b) English, (c) geography and (d) history have been vacant.

This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw. A copy of his reply will be placed in the library of the House.

1st Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many game farms in England use raised laying cages.

The Animal and Plant Health Agency have no information or data relating to numbers of game farms keeping laying hens in raised cages.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many animal cruelty offences and convictions have taken place in Eastbourne in each of the last three years.

The number of offenders found guilty of offences under Sections 4 to 8 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006, in the Sussex Police Force area, from 2014 to 2016, can be viewed in the table. (1)(2)(3)

Force / Local Justice Area

2014

2015

2016

Proceeded against

Found guilty

Proceeded against

Found guilty

Proceeded against

Found guilty

Sussex

20

17

11

8

12

7

of which

Sussex (Eastern) Local Justice Area (4)

7

5

4

2

3

1

(1) Defined as SS4-8 Animal Welfare Act 2006

(2) The figures given in the table relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences it is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.

(3) Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts and police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.

(4) Includes offences in Eastbourne

Source: Justice Statistics Analytical Services - Ministry of Justice.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
7th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of the recommendations of the report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Freedom of Religion or Belief, entitled Article 18: From Rhetoric to Reality, published on 25 Oct 2017.

The UK Government and, therefore, DFID recognise that freedom of religion or belief is a fundamental freedom applying to all human beings, which is recognised by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 18. Violations of the right to freedom of religion or belief are among the most common human rights violations, and people are discriminated and persecuted all over the world for having and expressing their belief (or non-belief).

DFID welcomes the analysis and recommendations contained within the report which will further enrich the government’s understanding and help to inform our approach as we continue to seek ways in which to further promote and protect freedom of religion or belief in all countries.

7th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps she is taking to ensure that UK aid is not allocated to organisations and programmes that do not support or understand freedom of religion or belief.

All DFID contractual and grant arrangements include specific clauses to prevent any discrimination against protected characteristics; this includes discrimination on the basis of religion or belief. DFID’s due diligence assessments, a necessary pre-requisite for receiving UK Aid funding, obtain assurance of a potential delivery partner’s capacity to deliver and meet those conditions set out in the contract or grant award.

18th Jul 2019
What progress has been made on the proposed dualling of the A27 east of Lewes to Eastbourne.

The Department is considering this proposal alongside the many others put forward for possible inclusion in the second Road Investment Strategy. We intend to announce our decisions towards the end of this year.

Michael Ellis
Paymaster General
25th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department has taken to tackle the disability pay gap in the last 12 months.

This Government is committed to providing targeted support for people so that everyone is given the very best chance of getting into and then thriving in work.

From April 2019, Jobcentre Plus introduced an enhanced Disability Employment Adviser and a new Disability Employment Adviser Leader role, in total more than 800 individuals supporting Jobcentre colleagues to provide high quality services to disabled people and those with health conditions. One of the key transformational elements of Universal Credit is that it provides us with the opportunity to support people who are in work to progress and increase their earnings.

Using an Innovation Fund funded by DWP, DHSC, and NHS England we are testing initiatives to support disabled people and those with health conditions to get into, and then remain in, work.

The government published the voluntary reporting framework on disability, mental ill health and wellbeing in November 2018.This is aimed at large employers (over 250 employees) and it is recommended that they publically report on the pay and progression of disabled people at regular intervals. It can also be used to support smaller employers who are keen to drive greater transparency in their organisation or industry.

25th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, (a) how many and (b) what proportion of disabled adults of working age in (i) England, (ii) Wales and (iii) Scotland received support from the Access to Work grant scheme in each of the last three years.

When considering your questions, it should be noted that those that use the Access to Work scheme are not a direct subset of the disabled adults of working age. Robust proportions cannot be estimated by simply dividing figures for Access to Work by figures for number of disabled adults of working age. This is because the data would come from different data sources and are different data types.

To be eligible for Access to Work a person must be 16 or older, there is no upper age limit to eligibility therefore some people who receive Access to Work will not be considered working age (16-64 years old). Also Access to Work is available to those that have a disability or health condition (physical or mental) that makes it hard for them to do parts of their job or get to and from work therefore covers a broad range of people not just those who identify themselves as ‘disabled’.

When answering your question, we have interpreted ‘received support’ as received a payment.

The number of people who received a payment from Access to Work for each financial year can be found in Table 8 of the annual Access to Work Statistics publication. Table 8 shows the number of people who received a payment for any Access to Work provision by various customer characteristics including by region.

The latest Access to Work statistics can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/access-to-work-statistics-april-2007-to-march-2019

Please note, number of people for each region is based on residency of the beneficiary as opposed to place of work. Figures are rounded to the nearest 10.

25th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent estimate she has made of the disability employment gap in her Department.

The disability employment gap is the measure of the difference between the employment rate of disabled people and the employment rate of non-disabled people. It is not therefore something which can be measured at the level of a single organisation. The current disability employment gap in the UK is 28.9 percentage points.

25th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many employees left employment in her Department due to (a) disability and (b) long-term health conditions in (i) 2016, (ii) 2017 and (iii) 2018.

The table below shows numbers of ill health retirements over the period requested.

Ill Health Retirements

Year ending

All leavers

No of People leaving on health reasons

Dec-16

10,014

174

Dec-17

6,998

129

Dec-18

6,754

126

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
25th Sep 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether her Department has implemented the voluntary reporting framework on disability, mental health and well-being in the workplace introduced in November 2018.

The Department have implemented the framework and the report is due to be published by the end of October 2019.

4th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the viability of the Verify scheme; and what role the private sector is planned to play in the future of that scheme.

The Government Digital Service (GDS) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have been working together on improvements to GOV.UK Verify for access to DWP digital services and the number of claimants who are successful when attempting to use GOV.UK Verify is steadily increasing.

DWP will continue to consider options to provide the easiest and most secure digital services for claimants and as such we're considering a range of other identity verification options which are easy to use and cost-effective for the Department. The Verify solution is part of the suite of products offered in this area. The assessment of all DWP identity solutions is a continuous process to ensure that we are meeting customer needs in the most cost effective way.

Discussions between Cabinet Office Government Digital Services, the owners of GOV.UK Verify are ongoing as to the role of the private sector post March 2020 and DWP, alongside all other Departments that use GOV.UK Verify, will be engaging in those conversations at the appropriate time.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
8th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the timeframe is for the bringing forward the transitional protection payments under schedule 2 of the Universal Credit (Managed Migration Pilot and Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2019.

Following the High Court Judgment on 3 May, in relation to Universal Credit and these regulations, we are considering our response.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
19th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average duration of a phone call to the universal credit helpline was in (a) each of the last three months and (b) 2018.

Universal Credit is a 24 hour, seven day a week, digital service that allows claimants to manage their own data and account online at a time which is convenient for them. Via their account claimants can check their Universal Credit benefit payments, notify us of changes and record notes via an online journal facility. In addition, established claimants who call the Freephone Universal Credit helpline are connected directly to the person or team who are dealing with the case.

The average call duration for a person calling the Universal Credit Full Service helpline in each of the last three months was:

Month

Average Call Time (minutes)

December 2018

6.15

January 2019

6.01

February 2019

6.01

The average call duration for a person calling the Universal Credit Full Service helpline in 2018 was 6 minutes 16 seconds

The Average Call Time (ACT) measure is the average time between a customer being connected to an agent and the call ending.

Notes:

Data Source: BT - OPMIS and Historical Management Information (GI2 – HMI)

Outsourced partner data is included.

The data supplied is derived from unpublished management information, which was collected for internal Departmental use only and has not been quality assured to National Statistics or Official Statistics publication standard. The data should therefore be treated with caution.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
19th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average wait time for a phone call to be answered was to the universal credit helpline in (a) each of the last three months and (b) 2018.

Universal Credit is a 24 hour, seven days a week, digital service that allows claimants to manage their own data and account online at a time which is convenient for them. Via their account claimants can check their Universal Credit benefit payments, notify us of changes and record notes via an online journal facility. In addition, established claimants who call the Freephone Universal Credit helpline are connected directly to the person or team who are dealing with the case.

The average waiting time for a person calling the Universal Credit Full Service helpline in each of the last three months was:

Month

Average Speed of Answer (minutes)

December 2018

4.52

January 2019

4.53

February 2019

4.16

The average waiting times for a person calling the Universal Credit Full Service helpline in 2018 was 5 minutes 52 seconds

Our Average Speed of Answer (ASA) measure is the average customer wait time from the point of entering a queue to connection to an agent. This excludes any time spent in pre-queue messaging and any wait time for calls ultimately abandoned by callers prior to answer.

Notes:

For calls connected to the owning Case Manager or team, the Average Speed of Answer was 1 minute 10 seconds in February 2019.

Data Source: BT - OPMIS and Historical Management Information (GI2 – HMI)

Outsourced partner data is included.

The data supplied is derived from unpublished management information, which was collected for internal Departmental use only and has not been quality assured to National Statistics or Official Statistics publication standard. The data should therefore be treated with caution.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
13th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what deadline is to implement the new online system to submit Access to Work signed claim forms with invoices.

Access to Work is in the process of transforming its digital processes, from application through to payment. We do not yet have a timetable for completion of this work. We are currently evaluating a range of digital options for Access to Work claim form and receipt/invoice submissions and we will be able to develop delivery timetables for that aspect of the transformation once this analysis has been completed.

18th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what plans she has to make audio visual recording facilities available for personal independence payment and employment and support allowance assessments.

As part of our commitment to improve the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessment process we have been progressing options to video record PIP face-to-face assessments. Over the summer we gathered views on video recording from claimants, representative bodies and from Health Professionals in order to inform a live testing pilot later in the year, which will inform wider rollout decisions.

Providing they give advance notice, claimants of Employment and Support Allowance and Universal Credit can already ask for their assessment to be audio recorded and equipment will be provided. Claimants may also use their own equipment provided they meet certain conditions required by DWP.

8th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the draft Universal Credit (Transitional Provisions) (Managed Migration) Regulations 2018, what analysis her Department has undertaken to assess the effect of those draft regulations on (a) disabled people, (b) carers and families and (c) Information and advice services.

The draft Regulations have been out for consultation with the Social Security Advisory Committee and we will consider their detailed recommendations alongside all the other stakeholder contributions we receive. We have had, and will continue to have, discussions with a wide range of stakeholders, including disability charities, on the regulations and on the wider managed migration process.

This extensive consultation with stakeholders is designed to ensure that the regulations accommodate the needs of all claimants. Equality impacts have been considered in developing our plans for managed migration, in line with Ministers’ legal duties. We will continue to consider these impacts as our plans for managed migration develop.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
8th Oct 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the draft Universal Credit(Transitional Provisions) (Managed Migration) Regulations 2018, what representations she has received from disability charities on those draft regulations.

The draft Regulations have been out for consultation with the Social Security Advisory Committee and we will consider their detailed recommendations alongside all the other stakeholder contributions we receive. We have had, and will continue to have, discussions with a wide range of stakeholders, including disability charities, on the regulations and on the wider managed migration process.

This extensive consultation with stakeholders is designed to ensure that the regulations accommodate the needs of all claimants. Equality impacts have been considered in developing our plans for managed migration, in line with Ministers’ legal duties. We will continue to consider these impacts as our plans for managed migration develop.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
10th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she has made an estimate of the cost to the public purse of applying the minimum income floor for self-employed claimants of universal credit on an annual basis.

The Government recognises the need for claimants who are setting up a business to be given time to establish themselves and develop their business and customer base. However, different businesses and individuals will take different periods of time to reach profitability. The intention of the start-up period is to give claimants the breathing space they need to work out how to support themselves while running their business - including identifying other sources of income or investment - while not subsidising claimants indefinitely to pursue unsustainable activities. This strikes a sensible balance between support for new business, not trapping claimants in welfare dependency, and protecting public funds.

Extending the start-up period beyond one year could diminish the incentive effect of the Minimum Income Floor (MIF), which is to encourage claimants to grow their earnings, whether through self-employment, combining that with other work, or moving to one of the over 800,000 current job vacancies. It would also add complexity, with no guarantee of better outcomes for either the claimant or the taxpayer. The government therefore has no current plans to reform the MIF or to extend the start-up period for self-employed claimants in Universal Credit.

In their January 2018 report, the Office for Budget Responsibility estimated the impact of the MIF on the public purse – their analysis is summarised in their welfare trends report http://obr.uk/wtr/welfare-trends-report-january-2018/

With regards to the estimate of the cost to the public purse of extending the start-up period for recipients of universal credit who are newly self-employed from 12 months to (a) 18 months and (b) 24 months, a formal assessment has not been made.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
10th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of extending the start-up period for recipients of universal credit who are newly self-employed.

The Government recognises the need for claimants who are setting up a business to be given time to establish themselves and develop their business and customer base. However, different businesses and individuals will take different periods of time to reach profitability. The intention of the start-up period is to give claimants the breathing space they need to work out how to support themselves while running their business - including identifying other sources of income or investment - while not subsidising claimants indefinitely to pursue unsustainable activities. This strikes a sensible balance between support for new business, not trapping claimants in welfare dependency, and protecting public funds.

Extending the start-up period beyond one year could diminish the incentive effect of the Minimum Income Floor (MIF), which is to encourage claimants to grow their earnings, whether through self-employment, combining that with other work, or moving to one of the over 800,000 current job vacancies. It would also add complexity, with no guarantee of better outcomes for either the claimant or the taxpayer. The government therefore has no current plans to reform the MIF or to extend the start-up period for self-employed claimants in Universal Credit.

In their January 2018 report, the Office for Budget Responsibility estimated the impact of the MIF on the public purse – their analysis is summarised in their welfare trends report http://obr.uk/wtr/welfare-trends-report-january-2018/

With regards to the estimate of the cost to the public purse of extending the start-up period for recipients of universal credit who are newly self-employed from 12 months to (a) 18 months and (b) 24 months, a formal assessment has not been made.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
10th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she has made an estimate of the cost to the public purse of extending the start-up period for recipients of universal credit who are newly self-employed from 12 months to (a) 18 months and (b) 24 months.

The Government recognises the need for claimants who are setting up a business to be given time to establish themselves and develop their business and customer base. However, different businesses and individuals will take different periods of time to reach profitability. The intention of the start-up period is to give claimants the breathing space they need to work out how to support themselves while running their business - including identifying other sources of income or investment - while not subsidising claimants indefinitely to pursue unsustainable activities. This strikes a sensible balance between support for new business, not trapping claimants in welfare dependency, and protecting public funds.

Extending the start-up period beyond one year could diminish the incentive effect of the Minimum Income Floor (MIF), which is to encourage claimants to grow their earnings, whether through self-employment, combining that with other work, or moving to one of the over 800,000 current job vacancies. It would also add complexity, with no guarantee of better outcomes for either the claimant or the taxpayer. The government therefore has no current plans to reform the MIF or to extend the start-up period for self-employed claimants in Universal Credit.

In their January 2018 report, the Office for Budget Responsibility estimated the impact of the MIF on the public purse – their analysis is summarised in their welfare trends report http://obr.uk/wtr/welfare-trends-report-january-2018/

With regards to the estimate of the cost to the public purse of extending the start-up period for recipients of universal credit who are newly self-employed from 12 months to (a) 18 months and (b) 24 months, a formal assessment has not been made.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
10th Sep 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many unemployed single parent households are in receipt of universal credit.

The table below provides the estimated number of households on Universal Credit occupied by single parents in June 2018 by employment status. The accompanying notes should be read in conjunction with the figures provided.

Estimated number of households on Universal Credit occupied by single parents, by employment status, Great Britain, June 2018

Employment Status

Number of households

Employed

91,000

Unemployed

107,000

Source: Household and people on Universal Credit datasets

Notes:

  1. Figures have been rounded to the nearest thousand. Individual figures may not add up to the total due to rounding.

  1. These figures have been calculated by matching the Universal Credit household dataset, which contains information about family type, with the people on Universal Credit dataset, which contains information about employment. The figure for households occupied by single parents has been deduced where the household has a family type of ‘single with child dependant(s)’. It has not been possible to determine the employment status of approximately 8,000 single parent households.

  1. A count date of the second Thursday of the month is used when calculating the statistics for the people and households on Universal Credit. An individual on Universal Credit at the count date will be recorded as in employment if they have employment earnings recorded within their completed Universal Credit assessment period closest to the count date. They may not be in employment on the count date.

  1. Further information on the background and methodology can be accessed here:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/739399/universal-credit-statistics-background-methodology.pdf

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
26th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will made an assessment of the potential merits of ensuring that claimants of personal independence payments receive a copy of their assessment report.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP) claimants can already ask for a full copy of their PIP assessment report by contacting the relevant helpline, but we intend to improve our PIP communications to ensure that those claimants who want to see their assessment report know that they can request it.

26th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the timetable is for the introduction of automatic (a) audio and (b) video recording of personal independence payment assessments.

We want to continually improve the service that claimants receive which is why, to help improve people’s trust in the assessment process, we want to make recording the assessment easier. We intend to make recording a standard part of the process if the claimant so chooses. We are exploring potential options to record assessments, including video recording, which will inform timings.

13th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of Support for Mortgage Interest claimants in each region in England.

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

Region

Estimated SMI caseload (000s)

North East

6

North West

16

Yorkshire and Humberside

9

East Midlands

7

West Midlands

10

East

9

London

11

South East

12

South West

8

Total

89

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, it has been assumed that the regional breakdown of ESA claimants is the same as the JSA, IS and PC caseload. It is estimated that in 2017/18 under 1% of the SMI caseload claimed UC; these cases are not included in the figures in the table above.
  • Estimates use QSE data over four quarters up to August 2017 and are calibrated to the 2017/18 SMI caseload forecast published in the Spring Statement benefit expenditure and caseload tables 2018: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/benefit-expenditure-and-caseload-tables-2018.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
8th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the recruitment targets set out in her Department's paper Improving Lives: The Future of Work, Health and Disability, what progress she has made on recruiting (a) Community Partners and (b) Disability Employment Advisers.

The Department is committed to recruiting around 200 Community Partners and is actively doing so. There are Community Partners in place in every Jobcentre Plus District. 116 Community Partners are currently in post and 38 others have accepted offers of employment. For all remaining posts recruitment is ongoing.

Disability Employment Advisors have also been recruited across the Jobcentre Plus network. As at February 2018, there are 470 full time equivalent DEAs with an actual headcount above 500 when taking account of part time and dual role workers.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
23rd Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what discussions she has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on increasing in line with inflation each year the maximum amount an individual can hold in savings before becoming ineligible for housing benefit.

No meetings have taken place. Although capital limits are kept under review, they can be increased only when priorities and resources allow. It was never the intention that they should be uprated annually. The cost would be substantial and it is questionable whether increasing the general capital limits, enabling more public money to be paid to people who already have significant resources, would be the best use of the funds available to us.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice) (jointly with Home Office)
16th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people with multiple sclerosis have been awarded the enhanced rate of personal independence payment (a) mobility, (b) daily living and (c) mobility and daily living component by award length.

The table below shows the number of people who have been awarded either one or both of the Mobility and Daily Living components at the enhanced rate of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for awards made between April 2013 and 31st October 2017, where the main disabling condition recorded was Multiple Sclerosis.

Table: Enhanced PIP Daily living and Mobility component awards made between April 2013 and 31st October 2017 with main disabling condition recorded as Multiple Sclerosis.

Enhanced Mobility (Nil / Standard / Enhanced Daily Living)

Enhanced Daily Living (Nil / Standard / Enhanced Mobility)

Enhanced Daily Living and Enhanced Mobility

Total Awards

18,740

16,370

14,130

Indefinite Awards

9,890

9,530

9,340

Finite Awards

8,850

6,840

4,790

Of which

460

430

280

1 year

520

490

290

2 years

2,140

1,850

1,130

3 years

2,720

1,830

1,230

4 years

910

650

500

5 years

1,660

1,160

950

6 years

10

10

10

7 years

0

#

0

8 years

#

#

#

9 years

20

20

20

10 years

280

270

260

10+ years

#

0

0

Short Term Award

130

130

120

Source: PIP ADS

Figures are based on the first outcome recorded for each case and include both new claims and DLA reassessment claims assessed under normal rules. Data has been rounded to the nearest 10 cases; totals less than 5 but greater than 0 are indicated by “#”. This is unpublished data and it should be used with caution and it may be subject to future revision. Data is based on main disabling condition as recorded on the PIP computer system. Claimants may often have multiple disabling conditions upon which the decision is based but only the primary condition is shown in these statistics.

The one year award length group includes cases whose award lengths are in the range 1-1.5 years. The two years award length group includes cases whose award lengths are in the range 1.5-2.5 years, and so on. The greater than 10 years group includes cases whose lengths are greater than or equal to 10.5 years but excludes cases whose award is indefinite.

Award lengths are calculated from the date of on-flow to PIP to the review date.

16th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people with multiple sclerosis placed in the employment support allowance (ESA) support group at initial work capability assessment have been placed in the ESA work-related activity group at their repeat assessment in each year since 2013.

The information requested is not readily available and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

16th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many and what proportion of people with multiple sclerosis have been placed in the employment support allowance Support Group on the basis of (a) physical or mental health risk, (b) pregnancy risk or (c) severe functional disability since 2013.

The number of people with a primary medical condition of Multiple Sclerosis, with an initial claim to Employment and Support Allowance who were assigned to the Support Group on the basis of a) physical or mental health, b) pregnancy risk or c) severe functional disability between January 2013 and March 2017 is shown in the following table:

Reason for Support Group assignment

Number of individuals

Percentage of individuals

Physical or mental health risk

100

2%

Pregnancy risk

-

0%

Severe functional disability

5,400

95%

Other reason

100

2%

Total

5,700

100%

Source: Data is derived from administrative data held by the DWP and assessment data provided by the Healthcare Provider.

15th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claims of the assessment rate of employment and support allowance have been processed (a) successfully and (b) unsuccessfully in each month since January 2015.

The number of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) new claims which have been processed and awarded, or refused the assessment rate of benefit, can be found in the tables in attached Annexe A.

10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the timetable is to the Government response to the Green Paper, entitled Improving Lives: The Work, Health and Disability, published on 31 October 2016; and if he will make a statement.

In October 2016 we published Improving Lives: the Work, Health and Disability Green Paper, setting out the Government’s approach to work and health and inviting views on a ten-year strategy for reform.

We engaged with a wide range of stakeholders and others with an interest during the Green Paper consultation period and received around 6,000 responses. We are working towards a publication later this year, which will provide an update on the work we have been doing since the Green Paper, respond to the consultation, and set out our next steps.

10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment his Department has made of the responses to the consultation on Work, health and disability: improving lives, which closed on 17 February 2017.

In October 2016 we published Improving Lives: the Work, Health and Disability Green Paper, setting out the Government’s approach to work and health and inviting views on a ten-year strategy for reform.

We engaged with a wide range of stakeholders and others with an interest during the Green Paper consultation period and received around 6,000 responses. We are working towards a publication later this year, which will provide an update on the work we have been doing since the Green Paper, respond to the consultation, and set out our next steps.

10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what discussions his Department has had with the Financial Conduct Authority on making the provision of a pensions dashboard a new regulated activity.

The DWP is leading a feasibility project to explore a range of issues that need to be considered in order to deliver the pensions dashboard.

Pensions dashboard would involve using and sharing personal information about pensions. Therefore, we would need to ensure that appropriate governance is in place so that the information on a dashboard is presented and used in a way that is in the customer’s best interest.

The DWP is working with other government departments, industry, consumer facing organisations and the regulators – The Pensions Regulator and Financial Conduct Authority – to carry out the feasibility work, and is committed to publishing its findings by March 2018.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what proportion of mandatory reconsiderations result in the original decision being upheld; and whether that figure achieves his Department's targets.

There are no targets within DWP for upholding applications for mandatory reconsideration. Each application is considered on its merits. The proportion of mandatory reconsiderations that resulted in the original decision being upheld is 81.9%. This data is based on the period 1st April 17 to 31st October 17.

10th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average length of time is for his Department to clear a mandatory reconsideration; and whether that figure achieves his Department's relevant targets.

There are no targets within DWP for the time within which a mandatory reconsideration should be cleared. Whilst they are done without delay, the focus is on making a quality decision not the speed of clearance. The average processing time for mandatory reconsideration decisions to be made is 11.5 working days. This data is based on the period 1st April 17 to 31st October 17.

7th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people with Parkinson's disease have been transferred from disability living allowance to personal independence payment to date.

The latest available data on the number of people with Parkinson’s disease who have been reassessed from Disability Living Allowance (DLA) to Personal Independence Payment can be found in table 8D in the file “Personal Independence Payment: DLA to PIP reassessment outcomes, October 2016” at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/personal-independence-payment-april-2013-to-october-2016

7th Nov 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people with Parkinson's disease have been placed in the personal independence payment no review required category.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer previously giving by the Hon. Member Penny Mordaunt MP on 25 July 2017 to Question UIN 5325.

There is no “no review required” category for Personal Independence Payment.

13th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average duration of a phone call was to the universal credit helpline in each of the last three months.

Data to indicate the average duration of calls to the Universal Credit helpline for each of the last 3 months is presented in the table below.

Please note:

  1. The average (full) call duration on the Universal Credit Helpline indicated in the data table below includes the average amount of time that calls were waiting in a telephony queue before being answered by a Customer Adviser and the average amount of time that Customer Advisers were talking to customers on inbound calls.
  2. The data supplied is derived from unpublished management information, which was collected for internal Departmental use only and has not been quality assured to National Statistics or Official Statistics publication standard. The data should therefore be treated with caution.

Month

Average Call Duration (in minutes and seconds)

Jul-17

12:14

Aug-17

13:02

Sep-17

13:12

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
13th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to remove restrictions on work-related benefits.

Tax Credits and other work related benefits such as JSA are part of the old system that placed restrictions on when people could claim those benefits. Universal Credit has already started to remove these restrictions - it makes it easier for claimants to move into work, and increase their hours of work until they can be financially independent.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if his Department will collect and publish quarterly data on the number and proportion of universal credit claimants who fall into rental arrears each month.

We do not currently have this information but we will shortly be publishing a report which analyses rent payment data with DWP Universal Credit payment records.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether he has made an assessment of the potential merits of replacing the work capability assessment with separate assessments for employment support and for financial support; and if he will make a statement.

We consulted on this model of reform for the Work Capability Assessment in the Improving Lives Green Paper. We received around 6,000 consultation responses, supported by 166 accessible events across the country. Our officials have been working hard since the Green Paper consultation to analyse that fantastic response. We are working towards an autumn publication, which will provide an update on the recent work we’ve been doing, respond to the consultation, and set out our next steps.

Penny Mordaunt
Minister of State (Department for International Trade)
7th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many universal credit claimants received advance payments in each month from January 2017.

Any need for an advance payment or other financial or budgeting support should be established at the outset of a claim for Universal Credit. This includes existing benefit claimants who move to Universal Credit through a change of circumstances. In the initial new claim interview, work coaches are trained to offer personal budgeting support and assess whether claimants need help to manage until their first Universal Credit payment. If so they are advised to apply for an advance. Furthermore, additional work has been done by the Department to raise awareness of advances nationally, including providing options on the UC Helpline, and signposting through the new “Universal Credit & you” guide for claimants and on the new online Money Manager tool offered by the Money Advice Service. We will shortly be publishing data on advances.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
7th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, (a) how many and (b) what proportion of universal credit claimants have fallen into rent arrears in each month from January 2017.

This information is not currently available. However, in order to address the issue of rent arrears in Universal Credit DWP are undertaking a number of initiatives.

Following successful pilots of the ‘Trusted Partner’ scheme and the ‘Landlord Portal Service’, DWP will rollout both initiatives together. We will start enrolling more landlords in stages from October, in tandem with the expansion of the Universal Credit Full Service. We will start with the largest landlord groups, in order to ensure the highest possible number of tenants are able to benefit from the schemes, as early as possible.

The Trusted Partner scheme allows social landlords to play a key role in engaging with their tenants who are Universal Credit claimants, helping those who can’t manage their housing payments to access the support available. The Landlord Portal provides social landlords with the ability to submit information directly to the Universal Credit online system, which supports timely and accurate payment of housing costs to Universal Credit claimants. The next stage of rollout for both initiatives means that all Trusted Partner landlords will have access to the Landlord Portal and we have already introduced this to the landlords involved in our Trusted Partner pilot.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
7th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, (a) how many and (b) what proportion of claimants have received hardship payments under universal credit in each month from January 2017.

Currently, the information requested is not readily available from our systems. However, work is planned to make this data accessible in the forthcoming months. To access this data in the meantime would involve a disproportionate cost to the Department.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
7th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average time for first payments to be made to new claimants of universal credit between application and receipt of payment was in each month from January 2017.

I refer the Hon. Members to the answer I gave on 18 July 2017 to question 4898.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
28th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the Answer of 11 March 2014, Official Report, column 141W, on children: maintenance, what progress he has made on the development of statistics on compliance, collections and enforcement under the statutory child maintenance scheme; and when he will publish these statistics.

Experimental Official Statistics on the Child Maintenance Service have been published on a regular quarterly cycle since March 2014. The series of reports can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-on-the-2012-statutory-child-maintenance-scheme

The statistics remain in the early stages of development with new measures added when they are fully assured and meet Official Statistics standards.

The next release is scheduled for the end of March 2015.

29th Aug 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if his Department will take steps to work with HM Treasury to ensure that, where future savings in the attendance allowance budget result from greater numbers of care home residents starting to qualify for local authority-funded care, those savings could be used to help local authorities with their wider responsibilities to meet care and support needs.

We will continue to work with HM Treasury and the Department of Health to consider any impacts that the Care Act 2014 may have on benefits.

27th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what average amount of child maintenance arrears is owed to parents with care.

As at March 2014, the average amount of child maintenance arrears owed to parents with care is £2,1461.

Notes

1. Arrears amounts are calculated on cases with a positive outstanding arrears value, against the 1993 and 2003 statutory maintenance schemes only, including cases managed off system.

The average amount of arrears owed to parents with care is calculated using the proportion of total arrears owed to parents with care and the proportion of cases where arrears are owed to parents with care, on the CSCS and CS2 computer systems only.

27th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many child support agency arrears cases are cases where there is no ongoing liability.

At March 2014 there were 532,500 Child Support Agency cases which had arrears with no ongoing liability.

Note: This includes cases administered on the 1993 and 2003 schemes only.

27th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference the Answer of 27 June 2012, Official Report, column 296, on children: maintenance, what proportion of Child Support Agency arrears cases include arrears that have been suspended; and what steps have since been taken to establish the proportion of cases where arrears have been (a) temporarily and (b) permanently suspended.

As of March 2014 approximately 48% of Child Support Agency cases with arrears contained an amount of suspended arrears.

Analysis of a sample of the caseload at November 2013 identified that approximately 14% of suspended arrears on the CS2 computer system were permanently suspended, leaving 86% temporarily suspended.

It is not possible to produce the proportion of cases temporarily or permanently suspended on the CSCS computer system because the information is not readily available and has not previously been published as official statistics. We will consider whether it is feasible to produce the statistics requested within the disproportionate cost limit, and if so, will issue them in an official statistics release in accordance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

Notes:

Management information on suspended debt is not available for off system cases, therefore the proportion of cases with arrears that contain suspended arrears has been calculated using CS2 and CSCS cases only.

27th Jun 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps the Child Support Agency has in place to review decisions taken to temporarily suspend action to recover child maintenance arrears and to establish whether the circumstances which led to the temporary suspension of recovery action have changed.

Child Support Agency cases with suspended debt will be investigated if the Agency is made aware of any changes of circumstance that would warrant the suspended debt being collected.

Under the new Child Maintenance Service all cases will be subject to an annual review. If the paying parent is working, the case will be reassessed and, if appropriate, any suspended debt reinstated.

18th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure adequate supplies of treatments for (a) epilepsy and (b) bipolar disorder in all scenarios surrounding the UK's exit from the EU.

The Department fully understands that maintaining access to treatments for epilepsy and bipolar disorder is vitally important to many people in this country.

The Government remains committed to leaving the European Union with a deal. We have now reached agreement with the EU on an extension to the Article 50 period until 31 October at the latest, with the option to leave earlier as soon as a Withdrawal Agreement has been ratified.

Under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, there will be an implementation period running till the end of 2020, during which there will be no changes to the current trading arrangements with the EU. Therefore, if the Withdrawal Agreement is ratified, the supply of medicines will continue on the same basis it does now during this period.

Leaving without a deal remains the legal default at the end of the extension period if no Withdrawal Agreement is agreed. Therefore, as a responsible Government, we will continue to prepare to minimise any disruption to the supply of medicines and medical products in a potential ‘no deal’ scenario. We are considering what impact this longer extension may have on our EU exit preparations, and are working closely with our stakeholders to review our position.

While we never give guarantees, we are confident that if everyone does what they need to do, the supply of medicines and medical products including treatments for epilepsy and bipolar disorder should be uninterrupted in the event we leave the EU without a deal.

The Department has a long-established pharmacist-led team and dedicated processes to deal with medicine shortages, whatever the cause. This team works closely with the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, the pharmaceutical industry, NHS England and others in the supply chain to help prevent shortages and to ensure that the risks to patients are minimised when they do arise.

20th Mar 2018
What the timetable is for the implementation of the faecal immunochemical test for bowel cancer screening.

The UK National Screening Committee has recommended that the faecal immunochemical test (FIT) be the primary screening test for bowel cancer and NHS England remains absolutely committed to implementing FIT in 2018/19.

NHS England is working with Public Health England to finalise a number of practical arrangements around sensitivity, production and distribution of FIT kits, and diagnostic and pathology workforce capacity to ensure that when FIT is implemented, it is sustainable.

1st Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if officials of his Department will meet patient organisations to ensure the patient voice is heard during the re-negotiation of the Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme.

Officials have met with patient organisations regarding their views on future medicines pricing arrangements on a number of occasions. Officials will continue to meet with patient organisations during 2018.

1st Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 1 December 2017 to Question 115087 on Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme, whether a decision has been made on the timing of negotiations with industry on the next Pharmaceutical Price Regulation Scheme.

Informal discussions have already begun with industry regarding future medicines pricing arrangements. Formal negotiations will begin during 2018.

23rd Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, which health body will be responsible for making the final decision on the sensitivity threshold for the faecal immunochemical test when it is introduced into the bowel cancer screening programme due to be implemented in April 2018.

It is expected that the faecal immunochemical test (FIT) will be implemented during 2018/19 as the primary screen test for the bowel cancer screening programme.

The Department has asked NHS England to lead the implementation of FIT and work through the practical steps to enable them to commission the new service from National Health Service providers. This will include: the sensitivity threshold at which FIT will be set; and consequent planning for colonoscopy and pathology workforce capacity; the distribution of the test kits; laboratory set up; new information technology links with the FIT analysing machines; staff training and public information. NHS England will undertake this with expert advice, practical support, standard setting and quality assurance from Public Health England.

As these practical steps are put into place, a more specific date in 2018 will be confirmed for the introduction of FIT as the primary screen test for the bowel cancer screening programme.

22nd Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether a decision has been reached on the sensitivity threshold for the faecal immunochemical test when it is introduced into the bowel cancer screening programme due to be implemented in April 2018; and if he will make a statement.

A decision is expected to be made in 2018/19 on the sensitivity threshold for the faecal immunochemical test (FIT) on its introduction to the bowel cancer screening programme.

NHS England remains committed to the implementation of FIT testing within the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme from 2018. During 2018, NHS England will finalise a number of practical steps to ensure when FIT is implemented it is sustainable. These steps include: working with Public Health England who will be ensuring that the practical arrangements for managing the production and distribution of FIT kits are in place and working with local providers to ensure sufficient workforce capacity is in place to deliver FIT and save lives.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what risk assessment East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust carried out on the implications of potentially longer travel time resulting from the move of consultant-led maternity services to Hastings for the health of mothers and pre-born or new-born babies.

NHS Improvement advises that when making the decision in 2013 to consolidate consultant-led maternity services at one site, East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust considered a number of risks and mitigations, including risks to patient safety. As part of this assessment, the trust also looked at travel times.

The Government is clear that all service changes should be based on clear evidence that they will deliver better outcomes for patients. Any changes should meet the four tests for service change: they should have support from general practitioner (GP) commissioners, be based on clinical evidence, demonstrate public and patient engagement, and consider patient choice. Implementation of the agreed service changes is a matter for the local National Health Service. It is for the local NHS to keep any service change under review, in line with its role in ensuring services provided are high quality, safe and sustainable.

4th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what risk assessment East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust carried out on perinatal and other maternity-related deaths before removing consultant-led maternity services from that Trust area.

NHS Improvement advises that when making the decision in 2013 to consolidate consultant-led maternity services at one site, East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust considered a number of risks and mitigations, including risks to patient safety. As part of this assessment, the trust also looked at travel times.

The Government is clear that all service changes should be based on clear evidence that they will deliver better outcomes for patients. Any changes should meet the four tests for service change: they should have support from general practitioner (GP) commissioners, be based on clinical evidence, demonstrate public and patient engagement, and consider patient choice. Implementation of the agreed service changes is a matter for the local National Health Service. It is for the local NHS to keep any service change under review, in line with its role in ensuring services provided are high quality, safe and sustainable.

23rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the equality implications of making human papilloma virus vaccination available to men who have sex with men between the ages of 16 and 40, while women over the age of 18 are not able to access the vaccine.

The Government is advised on all immunisation matters by the independent expert Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI). The JCVI is currently considering possible extension of the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccination programme to men who have sex with men (MSM) and to adolescent boys.

The JCVI has noted that if a targeted programme for MSM were to go ahead, then consideration would need to be given as to whether other groups should have access to HPV vaccination – for example, unimmunised women over 17 years of age.

A full equality impact assessment will be undertaken for any proposed changes to the HPV programme.

23rd Mar 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department and NHS England have taken to ensure that Grade 5 training opportunities are available for midwives.

The Government has mandated Health Education England (HEE) to provide national leadership on education, training and workforce development in the National Health Service. This mandate includes a commitment that HEE will ensure midwifery training produces midwives with the required competencies to practise in the new NHS.

It is ultimately the responsibility of individual employers to support the development of the staff they employ. However, as part of its core remit HEE will work with Local Education and Training Boards, regulatory bodies and healthcare providers to ensure professional and personal development continues beyond the end of formal training.

George Freeman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
28th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent discussions he has had with Public Health England on a national strategy for increasing public awareness of cervical cancer symptoms.

Ministers have regular meetings with Public Health England (PHE) about their public awareness campaigns including Be Clear on Cancer. The focus of national Be Clear on Cancer awareness campaigns (led by PHE since 1 April 2013) to date has been on cancers with the largest number of avoidable deaths, compared with countries with the best survival rates. These include breast cancer (particularly targeting older women), bowel cancer, lung cancer, kidney/bladder cancers and stomach/oesophageal cancers. However, anecdotal evidence suggests that there is a “halo” effect from these campaigns which can help to encourage earlier presentation to general practitioners (GPs) with any worrying symptom.

The Department will continue to work with PHE, NHS England and other stakeholders, to keep these campaigns under review and work with relevant experts to see what might be done to tackle awareness of the symptoms of other cancers, such as cervical cancer.

In March 2010, new guidance was published for primary care on the management of young women who present with gynaecological symptoms, following concerns from the Advisory Committee on Cervical Screening that young women presenting to primary care with symptoms of cervical cancer were not always being given the best advice. The guidance was produced by a multi-disciplinary group, including professionals, patients and the voluntary sector. It was reviewed by a number of GPs, and was endorsed by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the Royal College of General Practitioners and the Royal College of Physicians.

The guidance, ‘Clinical practice guidelines for the assessment of young women aged 20-24 with abnormal vaginal bleeding’ can be found at:

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130107105354/http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Publications/PublicationsPolicyAndGuidance/DH_113478

Women under 25 who are concerned about their risk of developing cervical cancer should contact their GP.

28th Jan 2015
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will launch targeted campaigns on cervical screening in regions where cervical screening rates have fallen below the national average.

The NHS Cervical Screening Programme promotes local public health service initiatives to encourage women to attend cervical screening, such as the Manchester campaign entitled “You Wouldn’t Miss…” – see the link below:

http://goodhealth-manchester.nhs.uk/test/cancer/cervicalCancerPosterCampaign.html

Cervical screening rates have been identified as a key issue by the Screening Programme Board. Public Health England is working with NHS England to develop a system of performance improvement through the use of performance floors, and strengthened governance for screening.

Cancer Research UK has undertaken work on improving bowel screening uptake in London, and the Department of Health Behavioural Insight team is developing a project on improving coverage in cervical screening. In addition, major research studies on increasing uptake of bowel and cervical screening are due to report in 2015-16.

16th Dec 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what recent discussions (a) his Department and (b) NHS England have had on the exclusion of indicators measuring over 75 mortality rates in the NHS Outcomes Framework.

It is not the case that indicators measuring the mortality rates of over 75s are excluded in the NHS Outcomes Framework. An overarching indicator in Domain 1, ‘Life Expectancy at 75’, is derived from mortality rates for people aged over 75 from all causes. This indicator captures premature mortality in a way that does not presume any age-determined limit to when a death is premature.

The cause-specific mortality rate indicators are capped at age 75 because the attribution of the cause of death is more problematic for older people, who often have co-morbidities. Therefore, these indicators could become misleading if they included those aged 75 and above.

However, the Department will keep under review outcome measures for older people as part of the next refresh of the NHS Outcomes Framework.

10th Jul 2014
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what guidance his Department has issued to clinical commissioning groups on the provision of hearing aids free at the point of delivery for patients with mild to moderate hearing loss.

The Department does not issue advice toclinical commissioning groups (CCGs) on hearing aid provision.

Local commissioners are responsible for commissioning the provision of hearing aids for mild to moderate hearing loss, based on the needs of their local population. In doing so, CCGs take into consideration relevant clinical guidance, which may include guidance from appropriate national bodies such as the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure the new faecal immunochemical test will be introduced in April 2018 as planned.

It is expected that the faecal immunochemical test (FIT) will be implemented during 2018/19 as the primary screen test for the bowel cancer screening programme.

The Department has asked NHS England to lead the implementation of FIT and work through the practical steps to enable them to commission the new service from National Health Service providers. This will include: the sensitivity threshold at which FIT will be set; and consequent planning for colonoscopy and pathology workforce capacity; the distribution of the test kits; laboratory set up; new information technology links with the FIT analysing machines; staff training and public information. NHS England will undertake this with expert advice, practical support, standard setting and quality assurance from Public Health England.

As these practical steps are put into place, a more specific date in 2018 will be confirmed for the introduction of FIT as the primary screen test for the bowel cancer screening programme.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, which health body will be responsible for making the final decision on the sensitivity threshold for the faecal immunochemical test when it is introduced into the bowel cancer screening programme due to be implemented in April 2018.

It is expected that the faecal immunochemical test (FIT) will be implemented during 2018/19 as the primary screen test for the bowel cancer screening programme.

The Department has asked NHS England to lead the implementation of FIT and work through the practical steps to enable them to commission the new service from National Health Service providers. This will include: the sensitivity threshold at which FIT will be set; and consequent planning for colonoscopy and pathology workforce capacity; the distribution of the test kits; laboratory set up; new information technology links with the FIT analysing machines; staff training and public information. NHS England will undertake this with expert advice, practical support, standard setting and quality assurance from Public Health England.

As these practical steps are put into place, a more specific date in 2018 will be confirmed for the introduction of FIT as the primary screen test for the bowel cancer screening programme.

6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will make representations to the Government of Nepal to amend Article 26(3) of the Nepalese constitution to uphold freedom of religion or belief in line with Nepal's obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The Constitution of Nepal guarantees freedom of religion and belief under article 26 (1) as a fundamental right. However sub-article 3 and the new 2017 Penal Code include provisions which could limit that right. I raised the importance of ensuring freedom of religion and belief in line with international obligations and standards when I met the Nepali Ambassador on 9 October. The British Embassy in Kathmandu has also urged the Nepali Government to ensure the final wording and implementation of the new Penal Code is consistent with the rights enshrined in the international laws that Nepal has ratified.

6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the implications for religious organisations and places of worship of having to register as non-governmental organisations in Nepal.

The reforms to Nepal's 2017 National Penal Code require most religious groups to register as non-governmental organisations. However, non-governmental organisations in Nepal are not permitted to promote or preach religion. This risks threatening freedom of religious expression.


I raised my concerns about freedom of religious expression with the Ambassador of Nepal on 9 October with particular reference to Christian minorities. The British Embassy in Kathmandu has also raised this matter with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. We will continue to press the Government of Nepal to ensure the legal framework governing this freedom fully complies with international standards.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent steps HMRC has taken in respect of (a) disguised remuneration schemes and (b) the promoters of such schemes.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of disguised remuneration schemes operating in the UK; and if he will make a statement.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their tax return for the most recent year for which figures are available.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many tax inquiries on disguised remuneration schemes have been open for more than than (a) five, (b) seven and (c) 10 years.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many people will (a) be affected by and (b) incur liabilities due to the 2019 Loan Charge; and of those people who (i) are or (ii) were accruing liabilities (A) doctors, (B) nurses, (C) teachers and (D) social workers.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect of the 2019 Loan Charge on the (a) contracting and freelancing sector and (b) economy.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of people working in the NHS that will owe money as a result of 2019 Loan Charge.

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

12th Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect of the 2019 Loan Charge on the NHS .

The charge on disguised remuneration (DR) loans is targeted at artificial tax avoidance schemes where earnings were paid via a third party in the form of ‘loans’ which in reality were never repaid.

DR scheme users took home almost all of their pay tax-free. However, these schemes never worked and the amounts paid were always taxable under the law at the time.

The Government has taken this action to ensure that everybody pays the taxes they owe and contributes towards the public-funded services from which they benefit. HMRC has provided a number of opportunities for DR scheme users to settle their tax affairs, and is actively encouraging scheme users to come forward and settle their tax position ahead of the loan charge arising. HMRC will help those who are in genuine financial difficulty by allowing them to pay their tax bill over time. The charge on DR loans is specifically targeted at these contrived tax avoidance schemes and is not expected to have significant effects on the economy or the NHS.

The Government estimates that up to 50,000 individuals will be affected by the charge on DR loans. Further information can be found at the ‘Disguised remuneration: further update’ policy paper: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/disguised-remuneration-further-update/disguised-remuneration-further-update.

The loan charge applies to all users of DR tax avoidance schemes. It does not single out a specific group or industry. No estimate of the number of individuals affected at sector level is available.

Fewer than 30 individuals declared the use of a loan scheme on their Self Assessment tax returns for the 2016/17 tax year. No estimate has been made of the number of schemes currently operating in the UK. HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) continues to challenge avoidance schemes that are declared, and carries out extensive investigation work to track down those that are not.

Enquiries into DR tax avoidance cases can be time consuming and take several years because of the very complex nature of the arrangements. HMRC also relies on the cooperation of scheme users to provide information and agree to pay the tax they owe. A breakdown of the number of DR cases open by the number of years they have been open is not available, as HMRC’s operational data is not held in a way where this information is readily accessible.

Pay As You Earn (PAYE) liabilities fall on the employer in the first instance. The loan charge will not change this principle and HMRC will pursue employers who have used DR schemes for the tax that is due. HMRC will only go to the employee to settle their income tax liability in cases where it cannot reasonably be collected from the employer, for example where the employer is no longer in existence.

HMRC pursues those who promote or enable tax avoidance schemes to ensure that nobody profits from selling avoidance. HMRC is able to charge tough penalties of up to one million pounds where promoters do not provide clear and accurate information to their clients, and penalties of 100% of the fees earned by anyone who designs, sells, or otherwise enables the use of tax avoidance arrangements.

HMRC is proactively reporting DR scheme promoters to the Advertising Standards Authority and professional bodies where they make misleading claims about their products and services or provide misleading advice.

HMRC will also consider criminal investigation where appropriate. Promoters of tax avoidance schemes have been prosecuted, leading to convictions and jail terms.

15th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans his Department has to require banks to inform customers at the expiration of a finance deal the best interest rates available through any bank.

The Government is already taking action to ensure customers can get the best deal for banking products:

  • Open Banking will allow customers to take control of their data and use it to find the best deal for themselves with the help of third-parties.

  • Following the recommendation in the Competition and Markets Authority Retail Banking Investigation, the FCA is carrying out work on the most effective prompts and alerts for customers to ensure they engage with their choice of banking products. The government will study closely the work of the FCA in this area, and will consider whether any further action should be taken.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Nov 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many (a) claims and (b) successful claims have been made for the child element of child tax credit for a third, or later child, born on or after 6 April 2017 on the grounds that the child was born as a result of a non-consensual conception; and for how many of those claims the supporting third-party professional was a midwife.

Statistics relating to exceptions to the limit on support to two children in Child Tax Credit will be published in due course.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
16th Oct 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps HM Revenue and Customs is taking to encourage local authorities to remove alcohol licences from premises which have participated in the sale of (a) non-duty paid alcohol and (b) illicit tobacco.

HM Revenue and Customs works closely with other enforcement agencies to tackle illicit alcohol and tobacco and in both areas has identified the need to maximise the use of sanctions available across government.

This includes withdrawal of alcohol licenses for the offences listed in Schedule 4 to the Licensing Act 2003 such as the sale of illicit tobacco, counterfeit alcohol and the evasion of excise duty.

‎Using the range of sanctions available has been encouraged through continuing discussion and initiatives such as HMRC's review of sanctions for tobacco fraud. As part of that review HMRC has been working with Trading Standard on the application of existing sanctions and consideration of options for new sanctions, which could potentially apply to other excise duty fraud.

HMRC is currently considering responses to its consultation on proposals for new sanctions undertaken earlier this year.

13th Oct 2017
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the cost to the public purse of raising the income tax allowance to £12,500.

The cost of raising the income tax Personal Allowance may be approximated using the “Direct effects of illustrative tax changes” table as published at the following address:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/direct-effects-of-illustrative-tax-changes

The table shows the cost of a £100 increase and a 10% increase in the Personal Allowance in 2018-19 through to 2020-21. This can be used to scale the proportionate cost to raise the Personal Allowance to £12,500.

16th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many alcohol licences have been revoked from shops which have participated in the sale of (a) non-duty paid alcohol and (b) illicit tobacco in the last 12 months.

The Government does not collect information relating to the number of alcohol licences revoked from shops which have participated in the sale of (a) non-duty paid alcohol and (b) illicit tobacco.

Brandon Lewis
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
12th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to place a statutory duty on care homes to install fire sprinklers.

The Government has commissioned Dame Judith Hackitt to take forward an independent review of the Building Regulations and fire safety system. Any decision on future fire safety requirements will be taken following the completion of that review, which is expected to be published in Spring 2018.

Dominic Raab
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
11th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, whether his Department has made an assessment of trends in the level of new build homes that can be adapted effectively to reflect the changing (a) mobility and (b) access requirements of older people.

The Department’s English Housing Survey collects information on the accessibility and adaptability of all homes, including new homes. The most recent report can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/english-housing-survey-2014-to-2015-adaptations-and-accessibility-of-homes-report.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, whether his Department plans to meet the target that all new homes should be built to meet the lifetime homes standard by 2030.

In October 2015, the Government introduced new requirements to the Building Regulations allowing local authorities to apply a new minimum standard to new housing developments if they feel this is necessary, justified by need, and does not compromise the viability of the development.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what steps his Department is taking to encourage older people with care needs to move to (a) homes and (b) communities with supported living services.

This Government is committed to supporting older people to live independently for as long as possible, including through providing them with a better choice of accommodation. We committed to ensuring we bring forward more homes that meet the needs of older people, as set out in the Housing White Paper. We will consider the important role of housing in our upcoming Social Care Green Paper. This is due to be published by summer 2018.

The Disabled Facilities Grant helps older and disabled people to live independently and safely in their own homes through funding adaptations. Government has invested over £1.6 billion into the Grant, providing around 250,000 adaptations by the end of the 2017-18 financial year.

We announced on 31 October that funding for sheltered and extra care housing will remain in the welfare system, with some new but proportionate cost controls. This will enable providers to continue investing to meet the growing demand for this provision from older people. We also support this investment through our Affordable Homes Programme and the Department of Health’s Care and Support Specialised Housing (CASSH) Fund.

Marcus Jones
Comptroller (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
6th Oct 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many people presented as homeless in each local authority area in England and Wales in each month from January 2017.

The Department for Communities and Local Government publishes regular statistics on rough sleeping, statutory homelessness and homelessness prevention and relief in England. These are published at a local authority level.

The latest statistics can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/homelessness-statistics.

The Government remains committed to reducing homelessness and rough sleeping. No one should ever have to sleep rough. That is why we are aiming to halve rough sleeping by 2022 and eliminate it altogether by 2027. To achieve this, we will set up a new homelessness reduction taskforce that will focus on prevention and affordable housing, and we will pilot a Housing First approach to tackle entrenched rough sleeping.

We are also implementing the most ambitious legislative reform in decades, the Homelessness Reduction Act, which will ensure that more people get the help they need earlier to prevent them from becoming homeless in the first place.

Marcus Jones
Comptroller (HM Household) (Whip, House of Commons)
24th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what criteria his Department uses to determine the allocation of legal aid; and how his Department assesses the claims of families of victims of terrorist attacks against that criteria.

All individual case funding decisions are taken by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA). It is important that these decisions are, and are seen to be, free from political and Government influence.

Legal aid can be provided, if the matter or issue in question is within scope of the legal aid scheme, as defined in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO).

Legal aid is available for advice and assistance for all inquests, subject to a means and merits test. Legal aid funding for legal representation for a family, during an inquest hearing, is not in scope of LASPO.

The Government recognises that for certain inquests, bereaved people may require representation; legal aid may therefore be available, through the Exceptional Case Funding scheme, if certain criteria are met:

(a) if a failure to provide such representation would breach, or likely risk a breach of, the government’s obligations under the European Convention of Human Rights, usually Article 2; or

where the Director of Legal Aid Casework (DLAC) makes a determination that there is a ‘wider public interest’ in legal representation being granted.

14th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will extend the definition of abuse of positions of trust in the Sexual Offences Act 2003 to cover all adults working with children in extra-curricular activities.

Any sexual activity with a child under 16 is a criminal offence, regardless of whether consent is given. Any non-consensual sexual activity is also a crime, whatever the age of the victim and whatever the relationship between the victim and perpetrator.

I recognise that there are concerns about those who might abuse their position of power over a 16 or 17-year-old to pressure them into engaging in a sexual relationship. Such behaviour is very likely to be caught by the robust laws we already have in place,

However, we remain absolutely committed to protecting children and young people from sexual abuse and we want to ensure that existing offences are being used effectively to tackle this behaviour, and that those working with young people understand their responsibilities and act appropriately.

My department, working closely with colleagues across government, is taking forward a review of the existing law, to check that that it is working effectively and ensuring young people are protected.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will keep Eastbourne magistrates court, county court and family court open until alternative provision has been made.

Local stakeholders and the Hon. Member’s predecessor as the MP for Eastbourne were informed in April 2017 that the HMCTS Property Board had agreed alternative provision arrangements for Eastbourne.

The courthouse at Eastbourne is expected to close in October 2017. The Eastbourne Traffic Commissioner’s Office will be used for hearings where appropriate. In addition, video link facilities for victims and witnesses will also be available at a local Police facility. Notice of closure has been provided to local legal stakeholders and is also displayed on public notices outside the building.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps he will take to engage with local stakeholders on planning alternative provision when Eastbourne magistrates court, county court and family court are closed.

Local stakeholders and the Hon. Member’s predecessor as the MP for Eastbourne were informed in April 2017 that the HMCTS Property Board had agreed alternative provision arrangements for Eastbourne.

The courthouse at Eastbourne is expected to close in October 2017. The Eastbourne Traffic Commissioner’s Office will be used for hearings where appropriate. In addition, video link facilities for victims and witnesses will also be available at a local Police facility. Notice of closure has been provided to local legal stakeholders and is also displayed on public notices outside the building.