Tony Lloyd Portrait

Tony Lloyd

Labour - Former Member for Rochdale

First elected: 8th June 2017


Northern Ireland Affairs Committee
29th Nov 2022 - 17th Jan 2024
International Trade Committee
13th Jul 2021 - 6th Feb 2023
Co-operatives, Mutuals and Friendly Societies Bill
23rd Nov 2022 - 30th Nov 2022
Trade (Australia and New Zealand) Bill
7th Sep 2022 - 18th Oct 2022
Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
23rd Mar 2018 - 28th Apr 2020
Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland
19th Dec 2019 - 6th Apr 2020
Shadow Minister (Housing, Communities and Local Government) (Housing)
9th Jan 2018 - 23rd Mar 2018
Shadow Minister (Housing)
3rd Jul 2017 - 9th Jan 2018
European Scrutiny Committee
26th Jul 2010 - 28th Nov 2011
Chair, Parliamentary Labour Party
5th Dec 2006 - 6th May 2010
North West Regional Select Committee
3rd Mar 2009 - 6th May 2010
Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)
6th May 1997 - 29th Jul 1999
Shadow Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs)
1st Jul 1995 - 1st May 1997
Shadow Spokesperson (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
1st Jul 1994 - 1st Jul 1995
Shadow Spokesperson (Education)
1st Jul 1992 - 1st Jul 1994
Shadow Spokesperson (Work and Pensions)
1st Jul 1988 - 1st Jul 1992
Shadow Spokesperson (Transport)
1st Jul 1988 - 1st Jul 1989
Opposition Whip (Commons)
1st Jul 1986 - 1st Jul 1987
Home Affairs: Sub-Committee on Race Relations & Immigration
15th May 1985 - 5th May 1987
Home Affairs Committee
18th Apr 1985 - 5th May 1987
Social Services
9th Jun 1983 - 18th Apr 1985


Division Voting information

Tony Lloyd has voted in 2263 divisions, and 8 times against the majority of their Party.

25 Jun 2018 - National Policy Statement: Airports - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 94 Labour No votes vs 119 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 415 Noes - 119
11 Jul 2012 - Sittings of the House - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 69 Labour Aye votes vs 138 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 241 Noes - 256
11 Jul 2012 - Sittings of the House - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 66 Labour No votes vs 139 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 267 Noes - 233
12 Mar 2012 - Backbench Business Committee - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 18 Labour No votes vs 41 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 105 Noes - 186
14 Mar 2007 - Trident - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 94 Labour Aye votes vs 226 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 167 Noes - 413
14 Mar 2007 - Trident - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 89 Labour No votes vs 222 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 409 Noes - 161
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 152 Labour No votes vs 162 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 416 Noes - 163
7 Mar 2007 - House of Lords Reform - View Vote Context
Tony Lloyd voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 111 Labour Aye votes vs 197 Labour No votes
Tally: Ayes - 196 Noes - 375
View All Tony 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
Karen Bradley (Conservative)
(43 debate interactions)
Lord Cameron of Chipping Norton (Conservative)
Foreign Secretary
(40 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
(24 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Northern Ireland Office
(155 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(93 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(60 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Tony Lloyd's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Tony Lloyd

8th January 2024
Tony Lloyd signed this EDM on Thursday 11th January 2024

Sub-postmasters

Tabled by: Kate Osborne (Labour - Jarrow)
That this House notes the increased awareness of the life-changing injustices experienced by sub-postmasters throughout the Horizon scandal; further notes it is now known as the most widespread miscarriage of justice in British history; notes with concern that sub-postmasters have served custodial sentences, suffered bankruptcy for offences they did not …
89 signatures
(Most recent: 6 Feb 2024)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 41
Scottish National Party: 16
Liberal Democrat: 12
Independent: 9
Democratic Unionist Party: 4
Plaid Cymru: 3
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 2
Alliance: 1
Alba Party: 1
Conservative: 1
Green Party: 1
8th January 2024
Tony Lloyd signed this EDM on Thursday 11th January 2024

Pension restitution for women born in the 1950s

Tabled by: Kim Johnson (Labour - Liverpool, Riverside)
That this House welcomes the positive interventions from so many hon. Members from across the House on behalf of women born in the 1950s who have suffered pensions loss through the targeting of their pension rights; pays tribute to constituents and campaigners in their ongoing fight for justice; recalls that …
93 signatures
(Most recent: 4 Mar 2024)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 42
Scottish National Party: 28
Democratic Unionist Party: 7
Independent: 5
Plaid Cymru: 3
Social Democratic & Labour Party: 2
Alba Party: 2
Liberal Democrat: 2
Green Party: 1
Alliance: 1
Conservative: 1
Workers Party of Britain: 1
View All Tony Lloyd's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Tony 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.


1 Urgent Question tabled by Tony Lloyd

Wednesday 18th July 2018

2 Adjournment Debates led by Tony Lloyd

1 Bill introduced by Tony Lloyd


A Bill to make provision for the establishment of a High Pay Commission; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 2nd February 2011

227 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
1 Other Department Questions
28th Aug 2020
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps the Government is taking to ensure that employers take steps to close the gender pay gap.

Large employers must report their gender pay gap data each year. Alongside this, we have published advice to help employers diagnose the causes of their gaps, and evidence-based guidance on practical actions they can take to close the gap. We have actively engaged with employers to ensure they have the information they need to close their gender pay gaps.

In recognition of the unprecedented uncertainty and pressure facing employers, we suspended enforcement of gender pay gap reporting for the 2019-20 reporting year. However, as of 3rd September, 5,636 employers in-scope of the regulations have reported their gender pay gap data for 19/20. We continue to support employers if they wish to report, and encourage them to act to provide equal opportunities for men and women in the workplace.

Kemi Badenoch
President of the Board of Trade
23rd Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what his policy is on Ministers devolving responsibility for answering hon. Members letters to officials.

As outlined in the ‘Guidance for Handling Correspondence’, correspondence to Ministers from hon. Members should be signed off at an appropriate equivalent ministerial level. Where an MP has written about the day-to-day operations of an Executive Agency or a Non-Departmental Public Body, the appropriate Chief Executive may reply.

Official replies to letters from MPs should only be authorised in some circumstances, for example, when dealing with a large volume of letters on the same issue which would lead to an improvement in departmental performance handling or that it has been decreed that under certain circumstances an official reply would be more appropriate.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, which civil society organisations she is consulting in the civil society dialogue meetings with Colombia under the UK-Andean countries trade agreement.

The Civil Society Dialogue between the UK and Colombia, Ecuador and Peru – held on 18 July 2023 - was attended by representatives from the domestic advisory groups of the parties and open to the public. The UK’s Trade and Sustainable Development Domestic Advisory Group consists of 12 member organisations, representing a broad range of labour and environmental stakeholders including businesses, trade unions and academia.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether there have been any civil society dialogue meetings with Colombia under the UK-Andean countries trade agreement.

Officials met with Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, within the framework of the first UK-Andean Civil Society Dialogue on Trade and Sustainable Development on 18 July 2023. The event was open to the public and attended by representatives from each partner’s civil society, including the domestic advisory groups established under the UK-Andean Countries Trade Agreement. This was a helpful step in the implementation of the Trade and Sustainable Development commitments.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether she has had recent discussions with the International Seabed Authority on (a) the likelihood of the Authority agreeing to issue exploitation licences for deep-sea mining projects and (b) what assessment is required to examine the potential impact of such mining projects on deep-sea ecosystems prior to exportation licences being issued.

The UK is fully engaged in the ongoing negotiations at the International Seabed Authority (ISA) Council and Assembly, to agree deep sea mining exploitation regulations. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office leads the UK delegation to the ISA.

The UK’s policy is not to sponsor or support the issuing of any exploitation licences for deep sea mining projects unless and until there is sufficient scientific evidence about the potential impact on deep sea ecosystems, and strong enforceable environmental Regulations, Standards and Guidelines have been developed by the ISA and are in place. The UK’s approach is both precautionary and conditional.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
11th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, pursuant to the Answer of 3 May 2023 to Question 183026 on Companies: Sanctions, what resources her Department plans to make available for the enforcement of director disqualification sanctions.

The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill will introduce a new director disqualification sanctions measure. It will be an offence for a designated person subject to this new measure to form a UK company, or to act as a director or otherwise be involved in the company’s promotion or management.

The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and the Department of Business and Trade are in ongoing discussions regarding the implementation of these new sanctions, including the enforcement function.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
27th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, if she will bring forward legislation to make it a criminal offence for people under sanctions to set up UK companies.

The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill, which is currently in Committee stage in the House of Lords, will create a completely new type of sanctions measure in the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018 called ‘director disqualification sanctions’. It will be an offence for a designated person subject to this new measure to form a UK company, or to act as a director or otherwise be involved in the company’s promotion or management.

It will be for the Foreign Secretary to decide when and how to deploy the measure, alongside the full suite of other sanctions measures.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
10th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps his Department is taking to ensure energy suppliers remove prepayment meters for customers who are (a) vulnerable and (b) at risk of prolonged disconnection.

All suppliers have agreed to cease the forced installation of prepayment meters and the remote switching of smart meters to prepayment mode, except in clear instances of energy theft. This pause was due to end on 31 March 2023, but has now been indefinitely extended whilst Ofgem and industry agree and implement a code of practice to improve consumer safeguards.

As announced in the Spring budget, the Government will remove the premium paid by households using prepayment meters by bringing their charges in line with comparable direct debit customers until the Energy Price Guarantee ends.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
10th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will make an assessment of the implications for his policies of the temporary ban on prepayment installations ending before Ofgem’s Market Compliance Review into prepayment meter policies and practices has concluded.

All suppliers have agreed to cease the forced installation of prepayment meters (PPMS) until 31 March 2023, but has now been indefinitely extended whilst Ofgem and industry agree and implement a code of practice to improve consumer safeguards. Ofgem has begun an intensive consultation process to look at what further protections may be needed around PPMs.

As announced in the Spring budget, the Government will remove the premium paid by households using prepayment meters by bringing their charges in line with comparable direct debit customers until the Energy Price Guarantee ends.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
5th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he has received the Director of Labour Market Enforcement's 2023-24 Strategy.

I recently met with the Director of Labour Market Enforcement where she updated me on progress in finalising her strategy for next year. When ready this will be published in line with statutory requirements.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with energy suppliers on how the Energy Bills Support Scheme can support tenants with mental health conditions, physical or learning disabilities in supported landlord schemes.

The Energy Prices Act includes provisions to require landlords and other intermediaries to pass energy price support provided by the Energy Price Guarantee, Energy Bills Support Scheme, or Energy Bill Relief Scheme as appropriate to end users who are the intended beneficiaries of the relevant schemes.

As a part of complying with the public sectors equalities duty, conversations with stakeholders included discussions on protected characteristics. These discussions fed into the public sector equality duty and to policy and delivery decisions.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
11th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with pharmaceutical companies on differential pricing policies of covid-19 vaccines for different countries.

Pricing of COVID-19 vaccines between pharmaceutical companies and other countries is a commercial matter for those parties involved.

8th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will hold discussions with technology companies to help ensure that their platforms are not being used to disseminate Russian propaganda.

The government takes the issue of disinformation seriously. The DCMS-led Counter Disinformation Unit (CDU) works to identify and counter Russian state-backed disinformation, working closely with cross Whitehall partners and the major social media platforms. The CDU encourages platforms to swiftly remove disinformation and coordinated inauthentic or manipulated behaviour, as per their Terms of Service. It also engages regularly with social media companies and technology companies to understand policy changes and other countermeasures related to Russian information activities, and the effectiveness of these actions.

21st Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the reasons for which the number of full-time equivalent children and family social workers leaving between October 2021 and September 2022 was the highest since the collection of figures began in 2017; and what steps she plans to take to increase the recruitment and retention of children and family social workers.

Social workers play a valuable role in supporting the most vulnerable in society and the department is committed to ensuring there is an excellent child and family social worker for everyone who needs one. We recognise the ongoing challenge facing local authorities across the country in recruiting and retaining child and family social workers, with reasons for social workers leaving the profession being varied and complex. However, the current number of full time-equivalent social workers is still higher than it was in 2017.

The department currently invests more than £50 million every year on recruiting, training and developing child and family social workers to ensure the workforce has the capacity, skills and knowledge to support and protect vulnerable children.

Through the fast track and development programmes, the department trains an average of 800 new social workers and provides professional development for around 4,000 others. This includes leadership training, which we know plays an important role in improving recruitment and retention.

On 2 February 2023, the department published its care reform strategy, ‘Stable Homes, Built on Love’, which sets out proposals to help stabilise the workforce. This includes supporting the recruitment of up to 500 social worker apprenticeships, a new Early Career Framework that will set out the development plans for a social worker’s first five years, and proposals to reduce the sector’s overreliance on agency social workers, which will all play an important role in helping to improve recruitment and retention.

Claire Coutinho
Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero
19th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what progress her Department has made on establishing an Early Career Framework for social workers as recommended by the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care.

The department has committed to developing a new Early Career Framework (ECF) for child and family social workers, significantly extending the training and support social workers receive at the beginning of their career.

As set out in ‘Stable Homes, Built on Love’, our children's social care implementation strategy, the initial induction period for all social workers will be extended to two years with an offer of further training and development up to five years. We will explore how we can make the ECF an entitlement for all child and family social workers from September 2026.

The programme will be underpinned by a new framework document, setting out the knowledge and skills social workers need to support and protect children and families. The department is in the process of recruiting an Expert Writing Group to write the framework document and will announce the membership of the group shortly. The group will engage widely with stakeholders throughout the process, and we will also consult formally on the content of the framework document.

​The department is committed to designing the ECF programme with the sector and will shortly appoint a small number of Early Adopter local authorities to work with us. Initially, these will be local authorities that are already running an extended early career programme, beyond the Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE), before we expand to a wider range of local authorities. In addition, the department is working with stakeholders from across the sector to develop and refine delivery plans, including Directors of Childrens Services, Social Work England, Principal Social Workers, the Chief Social Worker and Ofsted.

Claire Coutinho
Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero
22nd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether she plans to implement the recommendations of the Independent Commission on Assessment in Primary Education.

I refer the hon. Member for Rochdale to the answers given on 21 February 2023 to Questions 141618 and 141619.

22nd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the implications for her policies of the final report of the Independent Commission on Assessment in Primary Education.

I refer the hon. Member for Rochdale to the answers given on 21 February 2023 to Questions 141618 and 141619.

1st Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 20 July 2022 to Question 37614 on Schools: Buildings, which schools in Rochdale constituency had at least one construction element in (a) condition grade C and (b) condition grade D when that data was collated; and which of those schools (a) have already received funding from the School Rebuilding Programme and (b) are expected to receive funding from the School Rebuilding Programme in the next two years.

The Condition Data Collection (CDC) is one of the largest and most comprehensive data collection programmes in the UK’s public sector. It collected data on the building condition of government funded schools in England. It provides a robust evidence base to enable the Department to target capital funding for maintaining and rebuilding school buildings.

The key, high level findings of the CDC programme were published in May 2021 in the ‘Condition of School Buildings Survey: Key Findings’ report. This is available at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/989912/Condition_of_School_Buildings_Survey_CDC1_-_key_findings_report.pdf.

Individual CDC reports have been shared with every school and their responsible body to use alongside their existing condition surveys to plan maintenance schedules and investment plans. The Department plans to publish detailed school level CDC data. The Department is still preparing the data and will publish it as soon as possible.

Well maintained, safe school buildings are a priority for the Department. Our funding is directed both to maintaining the condition of the school estate and rebuilding schools. The Department has allocated over £13 billion for improving the condition of schools since 2015, including £1.8 billion committed this financial year.

The ten year School Rebuilding Programme (SRP) is condition led. 400 of the 500 available places on the programme have been provisionally allocated. A list of these schools and the methodology used to select them is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/school-rebuilding-programme-schools-in-the-programme.

The following table shows the constituencies specified that have schools or colleges selected for the SRP:

Parliamentary constituency

Schools selected for SRP

Huddersfield

Greenhead College, announced February 2021

Rochdale

Kingsway Park High School, announced February 2021 Littleborough Community Primary School, announced February 2021

The 239 schools announced in December 2022 will enter delivery at a rate of approximately 50 per year, over a five year period from 2023. The Department is currently undertaking due diligence on these schools prior to scheduling them, with schools prioritised according to the condition of their buildings, readiness to proceed, and efficiency of delivery. The scope and funding for each project will be confirmed following detailed feasibility studies and condition surveys of buildings.

Where a school identifies significant safety issues with a building, that cannot be managed within local resources, the Department considers additional support on a case-by-case basis. This includes applications for Urgent Capital Support (UCS) from eligible institutions. Schools eligible for Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) can apply for UCS where there are urgent health and safety issues that threaten school closure and cannot wait until the next CIF bidding round.

16th Jul 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether he has formally responded to the letter on the implementation of the recommendations of the Augar Review signed by 203 College Principals.

I can confirm that we have received the letter from my hon. Friend, the Member for Witney, Robert Courts, and 203 College Principals and I am responding to this letter. My hon. Friend, the Member for Witney, Robert Courts, and 203 College Principals shall receive their response shortly.

13th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department has taken to safeguard public health in connection with the supply of antibiotic-dosed meat to supermarkets.

Responsible use of antibiotics is an essential part of veterinary medicine: these medicines are needed to treat bacterial disease in animals. The UK Government is committed to reducing unnecessary use of antibiotics in animals whilst safeguarding animal health and welfare and antibiotic use in animals has reduced by 55% since 2014.

In the UK, antibiotics for animal use must be prescribed by a veterinary surgeon and we have strict maximum residue limits for food-producing animals. There is a comprehensive programme of statutory sampling and testing in place in the UK to look for residues of veterinary medicines, prohibited substances and contaminants in foodstuffs – this programme includes testing for a range of antibiotics, ensuring that they are being used in UK livestock in accordance with their authorisation. This activity is coordinated by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) in GB, and the results of testing and investigations are published on GOV.UK (link) on a quarterly and annual basis.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
5th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether (a) current and (b) former workers on the horticultural seasonal worker visa were given the opportunity to inform the independent review into labour shortages in the food supply chain, published on 30 June 2023.

The Independent Review of Labour Shortages in the Food Supply Chain was published on June 30th, 2023. Since it was an independent review Defra is not responsible for commenting on the specific evidence used to shape the final report, but notes that the Review does contain a Methodology section with more information that may be of interest. However, Defra does undertake an annual survey of workers involved in the Seasonal Worker visa route and this information was made available to the review team.

The Government will consider the Review’s recommendations and publish a Government response in the autumn.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
12th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the level of compliance with the legal requirement for fishing vessels to report marine mammal bycatch.

The Government recognises that accidental bycatch in fisheries is one of the greatest threats faced by sensitive marine species such as cetaceans, and we remain fully committed to tackling this issue.

The UK introduced new rules in 2021 making it a mandatory requirement under fishing vessel licence conditions for fishers to report any marine mammal bycatch to the Marine Management Organisation (MMO). On the introduction of this requirement, communications were sent out by Defra, the Devolved Administrations and the MMO to ensure that industry understood the new obligations. MMO is planning to communicate again with fishers this summer in order to ensure that rules are clear, and skippers comply with requirements. Responsibility for enforcing licence conditions in Scotland and Northern Ireland is a matter for the Devolved Administrations.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
14th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the guarantee of a minimum of 32 hours of work every week for people on the seasonal worker visa scheme will be measured (a) on a weekly basis and (b) over a longer period of time; and what steps her Department will take to (i) monitor and (ii) enforce this guarantee.

Sponsors and employers will need to ensure workers on the Seasonal Workers visa route are paid a minimum of 32 hours per week. This must be reflected in payslips covering the pay period for each worker.

A team within the Home Office compliance network will focus specifically on the agricultural sector and ensure sponsors are adhering to guidance and fulfilling their sponsorship responsibilities.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
14th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department plans to update the list of named sponsors on the notice entitled Seasonal worker visa route RFI notice, published by her Department on 27 June 2022.

Current operators of the Seasonal Workers visa route are listed in the register of licensed sponsors: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/register-of-licensed-sponsors-workers.

We will we updating the RFI Notice webpage in the next few months.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 27 February 2023 to Question 146808 on Agriculture: Seasonal Workers, if she will make an assessment of the accuracy of the register of licensed sponsors.

The licensed sponsors for all work immigration routes are listed on the Register of Licensed Sponsors: www.gov.uk/government/publications/register-of-licensed-sponsors-workers.

This is updated every day to ensure accuracy.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the transparency of the seasonal worker scheme.

The government will continue to provide transparency of the Seasonal Worker visa route.

Defra and the Home Office will soon jointly publish information about the annual surveys of workers undertaken in 2020 and 2021, and information about the visa route covering these same years later in 2023.

The Home Office already publishes quarterly immigration statistics on GOV.UK, and the government published a review of the first year of the seasonal workers pilot in 2019 Seasonal workers pilot review 2019 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
28th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she plans to publish increased transparency data on the seasonal worker visa scheme.

The government will continue to provide transparency of the Seasonal Worker visa route.

Defra and the Home Office will soon jointly publish information about the annual surveys of workers undertaken in 2020 and 2021, and information about the visa route covering these same years later in 2023.

The Home Office already publishes quarterly immigration statistics on GOV.UK, and the government published a review of the first year of the seasonal workers pilot in 2019 Seasonal workers pilot review 2019 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which operator offered the lowest guaranteed minimum number of hours on a Seasonal Worker visa in the latest period for which data is available; and how many hours they offered.

The guaranteed minimum number of hours offered by the Seasonal Worker visa operators, and how many hours they offered, is commercially sensitive data. There are no zero hour contracts.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
25th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 23 January 2023 to Question 120892 on Agriculture: Seasonal Workers, what the average working hours for seasonal migrant workers are at each seasonal worker visa scheme operator.

The guaranteed minimum number of hours offered by each operator and the average working hours for seasonal migrant workers by each operator is commercially sensitive data. There are no zero-hour contracts.

The sponsor licence regime - Workers and Temporary Workers: guidance for sponsors: sponsor a seasonal worker - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) - places a broad range of responsibilities on Scheme Operators to ensure that the rights of migrant workers are protected, including being responsible for ensuring workers have sufficient work, as part of their sponsorship duties.

The Government keeps these protections under close ongoing review.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
25th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 23 January 2023 to Question 120892 on Agriculture: Seasonal Workers, what the guaranteed minimum number of hours for seasonal migrant workers offered by each seasonal worker visa scheme operator is.

The guaranteed minimum number of hours offered by each operator and the average working hours for seasonal migrant workers by each operator is commercially sensitive data. There are no zero-hour contracts.

The sponsor licence regime - Workers and Temporary Workers: guidance for sponsors: sponsor a seasonal worker - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) - places a broad range of responsibilities on Scheme Operators to ensure that the rights of migrant workers are protected, including being responsible for ensuring workers have sufficient work, as part of their sponsorship duties.

The Government keeps these protections under close ongoing review.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
25th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 23 January 2023 to Question 120891 on Agriculture: Seasonal Workers, what redress is available to workers on the seasonal worker visa scheme if they are not paid; how those workers can access that payment; and how much was issued in redress for that purpose in (a) 2021 and (b) 2022.

The sponsor guidance - Workers and Temporary Workers: guidance for sponsors: sponson a seasonal worker - GOV.UK - provides information for approved scheme operators in the horticultural sector on how to sponsor an overseas worker on the seasonal worker immigration route. Breaching the sponsor guidance can result in the operator losing their license.

The sponsor guidance includes an overall requirement to maintain a high standard of welfare for seasonal workers. There is the expectation that Scheme Operators maximise the work opportunities for participating seasonal workers and we will continue to monitor this situation closely. Operators can transfer workers between farms to avoid seasonal workers being left without work.

The guidance also sets out the minimum pay requirements for this route, which includes paying a minimum hourly rate, alongside satisfying relevant National Minimum Wage regulations, including those on fair rates for piece work, and holiday pay. We do not collect data on redress of pay.

The guidance also requires operators to have appropriate procedures in place for workers to report any concerns they may have.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
25th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what welfare measures seasonal worker visa scheme operators have in place for workers who are left without work.

The sponsor guidance - Workers and Temporary Workers: guidance for sponsors: sponson a seasonal worker - GOV.UK - provides information for approved scheme operators in the horticultural sector on how to sponsor an overseas worker on the seasonal worker immigration route. Breaching the sponsor guidance can result in the operator losing their license.

The sponsor guidance includes an overall requirement to maintain a high standard of welfare for seasonal workers. There is the expectation that Scheme Operators maximise the work opportunities for participating seasonal workers and we will continue to monitor this situation closely. Operators can transfer workers between farms to avoid seasonal workers being left without work.

The guidance also sets out the minimum pay requirements for this route, which includes paying a minimum hourly rate, alongside satisfying relevant National Minimum Wage regulations, including those on fair rates for piece work, and holiday pay. We do not collect data on redress of pay.

The guidance also requires operators to have appropriate procedures in place for workers to report any concerns they may have.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the Government plans to implement measures to ensure workers on the agricultural seasonal worker visa scheme are not left without work due to the prohibition on workers switching between scheme operators.

Recruitment operators can transfer seasonal workers between farms to ensure mini-mum hours are met or if work runs out, they also have welfare measures in place to ensure workers are well cared for.


The Home Office and Defra continue to monitor the visa route closely to make sure operators and growers adhere to the stringent requirements set out in the Home Office’s Sponsor Guidance for ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the seasonal workers, including redress if workers are not paid. The operators of the Seasonal Worker visa route are licensed via a rigorous government selection process. As a minimum requirement, operators must be licensed by the Gangmasters Labour and Abuse Authority (GLAA). This makes sure that all workers are only placed with farms that adhere to all relevant legislation. Should a scheme operator lose their GLAA licencing at any point, their sponsor licence will be revoked with immediate effect.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will outline the process for the recruitment of new operators under the agricultural seasonal worker visa scheme.

The recruitment of new operators under the Seasonal Worker visa route is done by a Request for Information (RFI) process. This RFI process has been run three times to date, in 2018, 2021 and 2022, to coincide with the expansion of the Seasonal Workers visa route. A description of how this process was formally completed for the RFI in June 2022 can be found at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/seasonal-worker-visa-route-request-for-information-rfi/seasonal-worker-visa-route-rfi-notice

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what minimum hours guarantee is in place for workers on the agricultural seasonal worker visa; and what options are available to workers if little or no work is available.

All recruitment operators for the Seasonal Workers visa route offer a guaranteed minimum number of hours for seasonal migrant workers, with most working in excess of these hours. The usual rules prohibiting zero hours contracts continue to apply. Recruitment operators can transfer seasonal workers between farms to ensure these minimum hours are met and they also have welfare measures in place to ensure workers are well cared for.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
7th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answers of 21 November 2022 to Questions 84814 and 84816 on Pigs: Slaughterhouses, when she plans to respond to Question 84815, tabled on 11 November 2022 for answer by 16 November 2022.

A response was published on 14th December 2022.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what her Department’s policy is on the long term use of high concentrations of CO2 for the slaughter of pigs.

The Animal Welfare Committee’s (AWC) predecessor, the Farm Animal Welfare Council provided advice to the Government in 2003 which concluded that “the use of high concentrations of CO2 (80% and above) to stun and kill pigs is not acceptable”; and recommended “Government and the industry should fund research and development into the use of non-aversive gas mixtures. The use of aversive gas mixtures should be phased out within five years.” The Government has supported research into the use of alternatives. This includes inert gas mixtures, where there are practical constraints which have so far restricted commercial update. The Government has also part-funded research into low atmospheric pressure stunning (LAPS), however results demonstrated that LAPS is associated with poor welfare in pigs. We continue to engage with AWC on the need for alternatives to high concentration CO2 stunning of pigs.

We accept that there are longstanding animal welfare concerns associated with high concentration CO2 gas stunning of pigs. Following publication in 2021 of the Post Implementation Review of the Welfare of Animals at the Time of Killing (England) Regulations 2015 and as part of our Action Plan for Animal Welfare, we are currently considering a number of improvements that could be made. We have also met with industry to discuss alternatives to high concentration CO2 stunning of pigs.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what advice she has received from the Animal Welfare Committee on the use of high concentrations of CO2 to stun and kill pigs.

The Animal Welfare Committee’s (AWC) predecessor, the Farm Animal Welfare Council provided advice to the Government in 2003 which concluded that “the use of high concentrations of CO2 (80% and above) to stun and kill pigs is not acceptable”; and recommended “Government and the industry should fund research and development into the use of non-aversive gas mixtures. The use of aversive gas mixtures should be phased out within five years.” The Government has supported research into the use of alternatives. This includes inert gas mixtures, where there are practical constraints which have so far restricted commercial update. The Government has also part-funded research into low atmospheric pressure stunning (LAPS), however results demonstrated that LAPS is associated with poor welfare in pigs. We continue to engage with AWC on the need for alternatives to high concentration CO2 stunning of pigs.

We accept that there are longstanding animal welfare concerns associated with high concentration CO2 gas stunning of pigs. Following publication in 2021 of the Post Implementation Review of the Welfare of Animals at the Time of Killing (England) Regulations 2015 and as part of our Action Plan for Animal Welfare, we are currently considering a number of improvements that could be made. We have also met with industry to discuss alternatives to high concentration CO2 stunning of pigs.

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
11th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information her Department collects on the killing of pigs; how many pigs have been killed annually in England and Wales over the last five years; and how many pigs have been stunned and killed using high concentrations of CO2.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs publishes annual slaughter figures. Figures from 2017 to 2021 are available in the data sets provided here:

Latest cattle, sheep and pig slaughter statistics - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

The latest Food Standards Agency (FSA) slaughter sector survey conducted in 2022 can be found in the following publication: Results of the August 2022 FSA Survey into Slaughter Methods in England and Wales (publishing.service.gov.uk).

Mark Spencer
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
15th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many actions under the statutory nuisance regime have been taken regarding light pollution since that regime came into force.

Defra does not hold information about Light Pollution cases investigated under the Environmental Protection Act. This information is only held at Local Authority level.

15th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the effectiveness of his Department's policies for reducing light pollution.

We take a broad approach to tackling all impacts on biodiversity, such as artificial light, and have indicators set out through the 25 Year Environment Plan reporting mechanisms which assess the effectiveness of this wider work towards nature recovery.

20th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he has taken to implement the 25-Year Environment Plan's commitment to ensure that light pollution management eases potential impacts on wildlife.

Defra has funded or co-funded national and international assessments of drivers of change on insects and wider biodiversity such as the global Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’ (IPBES) Assessment Report on Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production. This report notes the effects of artificial light on nocturnal insects may be growing.

Defra has worked with the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) to ensure that the National Planning Policy Framework is clear that policies and decisions should limit the impact of light pollution on local amenity, dark landscapes and nature conservation.

Furthermore, Defra has contributed to the development of the DLUHC Planning Policy Guidance on light pollution, published in November 2019, which emphasises the importance of getting the right light in the right place at the right time and sets out the factors that are relevant when considering the ecological impacts of lighting.

A range of measures are in place to ensure that light pollution is effectively managed through: controls in the planning system; the statutory nuisance regime; and improvements in street lighting.

We continue to work with partners including leading scientists to review the latest studies related to light pollution and ensure we continue to address key threats to biodiversity.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
8th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when the Pollinator Advisory Steering Group (a) last met formally and (b) will meet next.

The Pollinator Advisory Steering Group last met formally on Friday 19 November 2021.

The date for the next quarterly meeting is not fixed yet, but we have been working closely with members of the group during the development of the Pollinator Action Plan for 2021 to 2024, which will be published soon.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
8th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when a Minister from his Department last attend a Pollinator Advisory Steering Group meeting.

The Pollinator Advisory Steering Group is intended to be a working level meeting between officials and partners in stakeholder organisations. As such, Ministers are generally not invited to join their meetings, and so attendance by a Minister would be by exception.

The last time a Defra Minister attended the Pollinator Advisory Steering Group meeting was on 9 May 2016.

Rebecca Pow
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
12th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the value of blanket bog peat lands to (a) carbon sequestration and (b) flood prevention.

Blanket bogs can act as a source or sink of carbon depending on their condition. Near natural condition blanket bogs sequester small amounts of carbon per hectare per year (0.7 to 2.8 tonnes carbon dioxide equivalents); however, the largest climate mitigation benefit of restoring blanket bog peatlands is from avoided emissions of greenhouse gases, rather than carbon sequestration, as degraded blanket bogs are more significant sources of greenhouse gases.

Research funded by Defra shows that restoring upland peat habitats can slow overland water flow leading to delayed and reduced peak discharge in small catchments. However, it remains difficult to demonstrate the benefits of peat management on flood prevention in larger catchments.

22nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what proposal in respect of a time limited waiver on covid-19 vaccine manufacture the Government plans to support at the forthcoming WTO TRIPS meeting.

I refer the Hon. Gentleman for Rochdale to the answer given to the Hon.Gentleman for Sefton Central on 23 November to Question UIN: 77440.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
18th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if she will ensure that grant money for businesses in the music industry is provided in time to allow their representation at the National Association of Music Merchants show, Music China and Musikmesse Frankfurt.

The successor to the Tradeshow Access Programme, when launched, is designed to address market failures whilst aligning to the Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Export Strategy. Supported shows are identified through departmental business planning, and prioritised collaboratively by DIT’s Campaigns, Sectors and Events Team.

National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) and Musikmesse Frankfurt take place in 2022-23 and will be prioritised through business planning for the coming financial year. Music China was not selected as a priority show for 2021-22.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
18th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, how the Government plans to decide which trade shows are eligible for grant funding in its successor to the Trade Show Access Programme.

The successor to the Tradeshow Access Programme, when launched, is designed to address market failures whilst aligning to the Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Export Strategy. Supported shows are identified through departmental business planning, and prioritised collaboratively by DIT’s Campaigns, Sectors and Events Team.

National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) and Musikmesse Frankfurt take place in 2022-23 and will be prioritised through business planning for the coming financial year. Music China was not selected as a priority show for 2021-22.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
20th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps she takes to coordinate policies with Greater Manchester local authorities and the Combined Authority to reduce air pollution emanating from the motorway system across Greater Manchester.

National Highways is responsible for addressing air quality on the Strategic Road Network. National Highways works closely with Greater Manchester authorities, and other local authorities, to reduce pollution. Following consultation which ran for 10 weeks until 6 June 2022, the Government intends to designate National Highways as a ‘relevant public authority’. This change will require National Highways to collaborate with local authorities to improve air quality – becoming an ‘air quality partner’ where locally relevant. National Highways publishes regular reports which are available at the National Highways Air Quality Reports webpage, setting out the steps they are taking. Greater Manchester authorities have also engaged with National Highways in the development of their plans for the reduction of Nitrogen Dioxide pollution. The Government is currently reviewing Greater Manchester authorities’ proposal and will respond in due course.

8th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what resources have been committed to the establishment of new electric vehicle charging points; what estimate he has made of the number of electric vehicle charging points that those resources will enable to be created; and if he will publish details of (a) expenditure and (b) the number of electric vehicle charging points by region.

Government has committed £2.5 billion since 2020 to support the transition to zero emission vehicles. Over £1.6 billion will be used to support charging infrastructure.

On 25 March 2022 the Government published the Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Infrastructure Strategy, setting out our vision and commitments to make EV charging cheaper and more convenient than refuelling at a petrol station. In the strategy, Government laid out that it expects at least ten times more public chargepoints to be installed across the UK by the end of the decade, bringing the number to around 300,000 by 2030.

The Department publishes data on the number of publicly available chargepoints monthly. In addition, on a quarterly basis, it also publishes data on chargepoints installed with support from grants offered by the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles. This includes both the number of installations and the grant value awarded, broken down to regional and local authority level for the whole UK.

31st Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of reports that aircraft belonging to sanctioned individuals have continued to use UK airfields.

Russia’s assault on Ukraine is an unprovoked, premeditated attack against a sovereign democratic state. The UK government has shown there are massive consequences and a severe cost for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. In coordination with our international allies and partners, we have developed and continue to expand an unprecedented package of sanctions.

Since 25 February Russian aircraft have been banned from entering UK airspace and landing in the UK.  This was strengthened on 8 March with the signing of the Russia (Sanctions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019. It is now a criminal offence to breach the airspace ban and it has conferred powers on the Secretary of State to direct airport operators to detain Russian aircraft.

Since the Russia (Sanctions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 came into effect, we have detained three aircraft, and have held a further two aircraft while thorough investigations are carried out. We continue to work with the aviation industry and other Government departments to rigorously investigate any aircraft that the Department becomes aware of that may be connected with Russia. We will not hesitate to impose further detentions on aircraft connected with sanctioned individuals.

Robert Courts
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
18th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent discussions he has had with representatives of the DVLA on the backlog in reviewing driving licences.

The quickest and easiest way to make an application to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) is by using its extensive suite of online services. There are no delays in successful online applications and customers should receive their licence within a few days.

However, many people still choose or have to make a paper application. The DVLA receives around 60,000 items of mail every day and industrial action by members of the Public and Commercial Services union has led to delays for customers. The DVLA has been working with a significantly reduced number of staff on site to ensure social distancing in line with Welsh Government requirements. The current increased demand for the DVLA’s services has also contributed to delays with paper applications.

The DVLA has introduced additional online services and recruited additional staff. The DVLA is urgently securing extra office space to house more staff to help reduce waiting times while providing future resilience and business continuity.

The DVLA understands the impact that delays can have on people’s everyday lives and is working as quickly as possible to process paper applications and return people’s documentation to them.

23rd Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent assessment he has made of the risk of transmission of covid-19 (a) on public transport and (b) in other crowded public spaces; what recent assessment he has made of the efficacy of different types of facemasks in preventing such transmission; and if he will make a statement.

I refer the hon Member to the answer I gave on 8 March 2021, to Question UIN 159378 regarding the risk of transmission of COVID-19 on public transport.

In regard to what assessment has been made of the efficacy of different types of face masks, in 2020 Public Health England’s rapid evidence review reported that the published literature indicated that face coverings of varying materials are more effective than no covering, and multi-layered coverings more effective than single-layer. Further information is available here: https://phe.koha-ptfs.co.uk/cgi-bin/koha/opac-retrieve-file.pl?id=5f043ca658db1188ffae74827fa650d9

A second review published in January 2021 corroborated the findings of the first review and found consistent evidence that the use of face coverings in community settings reduced the spread of COVID-19: https://phe.koha-ptfs.co.uk/cgi-bin/koha/opac-retrieve-file.pl?id=d86880bf65bd6b18eae21aa3bdaf2a4b

12th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the penalties are for train operators that have not provided the level of service that they are contracted to deliver; what compensation is available to passengers of Northern Rail that have not met contractual obligations services; what steps he is taking to improve the provision of rail services in Rochdale; and whether he plans to withdraw the franchise of operators which have not fulfilled their contractual obligations.

Under the terms of the Franchise Agreement there is a performance regime which deals with poor performance in the areas of cancellations, delays and reduced capacity. Under the Delay Repay scheme, Northern passengers are entitled to compensation if a delay to their train journey means they are delayed in reaching their destination by 15mins or more. Delay Repay for those journeys delayed 15mins or more was announced by the Secretary of State later last year and introduced by Northern on 16 December 2018. As part of this, the Secretary of State has tasked Richard George, an independent industry expert, to assist with railway industry performance improvement in the region covered by TfN. The Secretary of State has no hesitation in enforcing that any of his rights under the Franchise Agreement for operators not fulfilling their contractual obligations.

13th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to Answer of 11 June 2018 to Question 150572 on Members: Correspondence, when he plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale of 11 April 2018, reference number IW/0060, on the age of road vehicle tyres.

The guidance issued by the Department for Transport concerning the use of older tyres continues to be implemented into the maintenance regime of the bus and coach fleet. Official analysis suggests it has been effective. Out of 28,524 roadworthiness inspections conducted by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency, the Agency found that approximately 0.23% of vehicles failed to meet the legal minimum requirements for tyres, and approximately 0.03% had tyres older than 10 years.

The Department for Transport has also discussed with a Traffic Commissioner and the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency how to reinforce the advice provided to vehicle operators in relation to the age of tyres. Enhanced procedures are expected be in place shortly.

Separately, as previously announced to the House, a programme of research is underway that will report at the beginning of 2019. This research should provide a deeper understanding of the effect of age on the various materials used in tyre construction. The Government does not rule out further measures once this evidence is available.

A response to the Honourable Member’s letter had been held by officials in draft pending review of recent evidence, and I apologise for the delay. I have now written to the Honourable Gentleman separately setting out in more detail what the Department has done to address these issues.

6th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale dated 11 April 2018, reference number IW/0060, on the age of road vehicle tyres.

The Government has provided specific guidance to every operator of a public service vehicle on the importance of safety and to ensure that tyres are correctly maintained and their condition routinely monitored. They are also advised not to use tyres of 10-years of age or more on the steering axle of a bus or coach. This guidance has been reinforced during vehicle inspections by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency.

Ensuring compliance with the guidance is important and the Government made clear that it has not ruled out further measures.

26th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when the works on the westbound carriageway of the M60 will be concluded.

Highways England is opening the scheme is phases with two key sections already opened. Full completion is expected by the end of summer 2018.

26th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the original anticipated date was for the conclusion of smart motorway construction work on the westbound carriageway of the M60.

In Highways England’s Delivery Plan for roads period 2015-2020 the M60 Junction 8 to M62 Junction 20 Smart Motorway Scheme was forecast to be open to traffic in quarter 2 of the 2017/18 financial year. In August 2017, Highways England published their Delivery Plan Update (Supplementary Annex) and the construction programme for this scheme was extended so that additional works including flood mitigation and pavement resurfacing could be completed under the existing restrictions. This will help avoid the need for future additional network access in this location. Highways England is opening the scheme in phases. Junction 18 – 20 of the M62 and Junction 8 – 10 of the M60 are now open. Full completion is expected by the end of summer 2018.

26th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment has been made of the efficacy of the working practices relating to the smart motorway construction work on the westbound carriageway of the M60; and if he will make a statement.

The M60 J8 to M62 J20 is a busy stretch of urban motorway and due to the complexities this scheme presented, it was became clear that creating long lengths of roadworks for the whole delivery of the scheme was not practical, and that phasing the works was a more appropriate approach. This assessment of working practices is currently being shared with future smart motorway projects.

14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will take steps to provide individuals who receive means-tested Council Tax support with cost of living support payments.

The Cost of Living Payments are targeted at low-income households in receipt of a qualifying means tested benefit.  Low income households who are in receipt of Council Tax support are able to apply for one of these qualifying means-tested benefits which may provide them with entitlement to a Cost of Living Payment.

To receive a Cost of Living Payment the individual must be entitled to payment of a qualifying means-tested benefit during the qualifying periods, or a payment of Universal Credit for an assessment period ending within the qualifying periods.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what plans he has to ensure that self employed people are able to access cost of living payments.

Self-employed people on a low income could be eligible for cost of living payments of up to £900 if they are entitled to a means-tested benefit, such as Universal Credit, in the relevant qualifying period. To qualify for the first payment of £301 an individual would need to have been entitled to a payment of either Universal Credit for an assessment period ending between 26 January and 25 February 2023 a payment of another DWP means-tested benefit for any day between 26 January and 25 February 2023; or have received (or later be found to have been entitled to) a payment of tax credits for any day in the same period. As with the first payment, the qualifying dates for the second and third payments of £300 and £299 will be set out in secondary legislation and announced once these regulations have been made.

We have kept the eligibility rules for the cost of living payments as simple as possible in order to deliver them promptly and accurately. Whatever eligibility dates are selected there will be always be some individuals who are ineligible in the qualifying period – whether that is due for example to their earnings, capital or other income, or for a combination of reasons. Our decision to make three separate payments over 2023/24 will however reduce the chance of someone missing out altogether.

To help households with the costs of essentials, including those who may not be eligible for cost of living payments, we are also extending the Household Support Fund in England. The Devolved Administrations will receive Barnett funding to spend at their discretion and with their local knowledge.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment he has made of the ability of self employed people to access cost of living payments.

Self-employed people on a low income could be eligible for cost of living payments of up to £900 if they are entitled to a means-tested benefit, such as Universal Credit, in the relevant qualifying period. To qualify for the first payment of £301 an individual would need to have been entitled to a payment of either Universal Credit for an assessment period ending between 26 January and 25 February 2023 a payment of another DWP means-tested benefit for any day between 26 January and 25 February 2023; or have received (or later be found to have been entitled to) a payment of tax credits for any day in the same period. As with the first payment, the qualifying dates for the second and third payments of £300 and £299 will be set out in secondary legislation and announced once these regulations have been made.

We have kept the eligibility rules for the cost of living payments as simple as possible in order to deliver them promptly and accurately. Whatever eligibility dates are selected there will be always be some individuals who are ineligible in the qualifying period – whether that is due for example to their earnings, capital or other income, or for a combination of reasons. Our decision to make three separate payments over 2023/24 will however reduce the chance of someone missing out altogether.

To help households with the costs of essentials, including those who may not be eligible for cost of living payments, we are also extending the Household Support Fund in England. The Devolved Administrations will receive Barnett funding to spend at their discretion and with their local knowledge.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
7th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, in the context of potential closure of her Department's Phoenix House office in Barrow-in-Furness, whether her Department has taken steps to maintain knowledge and experience of staff dealing with claims arising from asbestos exposure.

Following the plans to close Phoenix House being announced in 2017, resources have been increased other locations, and capability is being built in these locations which includes those cases arising from asbestos exposure.

Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB) is delivered by experienced teams in three sites, the planned closure of Barrow-in-Furness means that work currently undertaken in this site will be delivered from our other IIDB teams based in Barnsley and Bradford.

Transfer of work will be done in a seamless way, with no degradation of service to our customers, including those customers who claim with asbestos related diseases, or under schemes such as the “Workers’ Compensation Scheme, Pneumoconiosis (Workers’ Compensation) Act 1979 and the 2008 Mesothelioma Scheme.”

20th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether there is a statutory basis for the Child Support Agency to write off debt; and whether that Agency can reinstate debts it has written off.

In 2012, powers were introduced which allowed the Child Maintenance Service (CMS) to write off Child Support Agency (CSA) and CMS debt in specific scenarios where it would be unfair or inappropriate to enforce liability.

Further powers were then introduced in 2018 which allowed remaining cases on the CSA to be closed following the collection or write off, of historic arrears, as part of the closure of the scheme. The debt must meet certain criteria relating to the amounts owed and the effective date of the maintenance calculation to be considered for write off.

The CMS can reinstate debt that has been written off in very specific and exceptional cases, for example, if the debt was written off in error.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
10th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what provisions her Department has made for monies to fund tribunal cases involving applicants appealing against the refusal of Personal Independent Payments.

The information requested is not collated centrally and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

23rd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the number of people affected by delays in initiating payment of the state pension to those who reach the appropriate retirement age; and if she will make a statement.

This information is not collated as part of normal business and is only available at disproportionate cost to the Department.

Normal processes have now returned and payments are back to normal times. Where we are awaiting additional information to process a customer’s claim, these claims will be actioned on receipt of the required information.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
10th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to reply to the email of the 8 of March 2023 from the hon. Member for Rochdale on sexual offences in Greater Manchester.

I replied to the hon. Member on 18 May 2023.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
18th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what information his Department collects on the caseloads of social care workers in each local authority.

The Department does not measure the caseloads of social care workers.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of trends in the level of needs of social care workers in each local authority.

No assessment has been made.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what information his Department collects on the provision of social care workers compared to the population of local authorities.

Skills for Care publishes estimates of filled posts in adult social care and the Office for National Statistics publishes estimates of population size at local authority level. However, the Department does not make an assessment on the sufficiency of current workforce capacity in each local authority. Local authorities should work with care providers to meet care needs in their area.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what information his Department routinely collects on shortages of social care workers in each local authority.

Skills for Care collect data on advertised vacancies on behalf of the Department and publish vacancy estimates. Vacancy rates in the care sector are determined by natural churn, independent providers’ ambitions to grow, demand for care, trends in the wider labour market and workforce capacity pressures. As a result, vacancies may not be a good measure of workforce shortages and are not used as such by the Department.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will list the (a) hospital trusts and (b) individual hospitals that lost their accident and emergency departments but have subsequently had them reinstated as a result of Government action in the last 10 years; and if he will publish the criteria used to determine when a hospital should have its accident and emergency department reinstated after closure.

This information is not held in the format requested.

23rd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to publish the findings of the Expert Working Group review on Hormone Pregnancy Tests.

The ‘Report of the Commission on Human Medicines’ Expert Working Group on Hormone Pregnancy Tests’ was published on 15 November 2017 and is available at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/report-of-the-commission-on-human-medicines-expert-working-group-on-hormone-pregnancy-tests

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
23rd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent reassessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the recommendations in the Independent Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Review for victims of hormone pregnancy tests.

The Government published its response to the Independent Medicines and Medical Devices Safety review in July 2021. We will provide an update on progress on implementing the response in due course.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
23rd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the potential merits of providing redress for victims of Hormone Pregnancy Tests.

The Government’s response to the Independent Medicines and Medical Devices Safety Review did not accept the recommendation relating to redress, including for hormone pregnancy tests. We are prioritising improving the future safety of medicines and medical devices through high standards for industry to market and manufacture products.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department takes to monitor the performance of the provision of local retention initiatives in the NHS Greater Manchester ICS area.

NHS England retains oversight of local workforce plans and is updated on vacancy rates. However, recruitment and retention are undertaken at trust level. The NHS People Plan focuses on improving the retention of National Health Service staff by prioritising staff health and wellbeing. In 2022/23, £45 million has been allocated to support the continuation of 40 mental health hubs, the Professional Nurse Advocates programme and expanding the NHS Practitioner Health service.

NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care System is currently developing a retention plan and is engaging with partners in the health and care system. It is also working with NHS England to consider current and future data collection to monitoring the impact and sustainability of local retention initiatives.

2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding has been allocated to NHS Greater Manchester ICS to support with GP retention for 2022-23; and how much was spent for that purpose in 2021-22.

NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care System’s (ICS) projected expenditure through NHS England’s national general practitioner (GP) retention scheme for 2022/23 is £221,000. In 2021/22, its spending was approximately £195,000.

In addition, through the Greater Manchester Primary Care Workforce Programme, in 2021/22 the ICS invested £639,000 in GP workforce development programmes which supported recruitment and retention. Its projected investment in 2022/23 is approximately £644,000.

2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many GPs who had been previously working in NHS Greater Manchester ICS area have left the profession in the last three years.

This information is not collected in the format requested.

2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to improve GP retention in the NHS Greater Manchester ICS area.

We are working with NHS England, Health Education England and the profession to increase the general practice workforce in England, including in Greater Manchester. This includes measures to improve recruitment, address the reasons why doctors leave the profession and encourage them to return to practice.

The updated GP Contract Framework announced a number of new schemes, alongside continued support for existing recruitment and retention schemes for the general practice workforce. This includes the GP Retention Scheme, the GP Retention Fund, the National GP Induction and Refresher, the Locum Support Scheme, the New to Partnership Payment and the Supporting Mentors Scheme.

4th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make an assessment of the availability across health providers of (a) cognitive behavioural therapy, (b) eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing and (c) dialectical behaviour therapy.

The ‘Health Education England Adult IAPT Workforce Census 2021’ reported that in March 2021, 92% of providers offered cognitive behavioural therapy through local Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) services and 88% offered eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing. Dialectical behaviour therapy is not offered through IAPT services.

The NHS Long Term Plan sets out an ambition to expand and transform community mental health services for adults, including increasing access to evidence-based psychological therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy, eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing and dialectical behaviour therapy. No assessment has been made of the availability of psychological therapies provided by adult and children and young people’s community health services.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
16th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 8 June 2022 to Question 3475 on Mental Health Services: Children and Young People, what criteria are used to determine whether health and wellbeing measures affecting children and young people are to be afforded statutory protection; and which measures have been afforded that protection in the last 12 years.

Any decision to place such measures on a statutory footing would be subject to the Department’s policy development process, any legal obligations such as the Public Sector Equality Duty, any relevant impact tests such as the family test, consultation with interested parties and value for money, with the final decision made by Minsters. The information on the specific measures afforded this protection in the last 12 years is not held in the format requested and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
14th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what representations he received on the needs of children and young people during public consultations on the White Paper on Reforming the Mental Health Act.

The Government consulted on the proposals for legislation made by the Independent Review of the Mental Health Act in 2018, including the white paper ‘Reforming the Mental Health Act’, which received more than 1,700 responses. Of the responses, 1,449 were used in the qualitative analysis, of which 1,119 responses were received from individuals. This included 74 from people aged under 25 years old; 1,020 from people aged 25 years old and over; and 25 respondents did not specify their age. There were also 330 responses received on behalf of organisations, including those representing the needs of children and young people.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
14th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he will take to address the needs of children and young people as part of the proposed reform of the Mental Health Act 1983.

A draft Mental Health Bill will be published shortly. The legislative reforms aim to give greater autonomy to children and young people to inform their care and treatment and ensure that inpatients, whether or not they are detained under the Mental Health Act 1983, are given improved support to access their rights under the Act.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
17th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether it is his policy to pursue a non-statutory strategy in matters concerning early intervention and school and community-based measures for the mental health support of children and young people; what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of a non-statutory basis for that strategy; and what consideration he gave to providing a statutory basis for these services.

‘Transforming children and young people’s mental health provision: a green paper’ and the NHS Long Term Plan set out the policy concerning early intervention and school and community-based measures for the mental health support of children and young people. These do not require a statutory basis to implement. No assessment of the merits of a non-statutory or statutory approach for these services has been made since the publication of the green paper and the Long Term Plan.

We continue to consider the Committee’s recommendations in the context of the development of a new long term, cross-Government plan for mental health. We will update our response to the Committee’s recommendations once the final plan is published. A call for evidence to inform the development of the plan is open until 7 July 2022.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
21st Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will provide an update on his Department's response to each of the 25 recommendations made by the Health and Social Care Committee in its Eighth Report, Children and Young People's Mental Health, HC 17, published on 9 December 2021; and if he will make a statement.

We welcome the Committee’s report. In our response to the Health and Social Care Committee’s report, we set out where we agreed with its recommendations or where we are taking forward the recommendations in part or in full. We will be considering the recommendations in full during the development of a new long term cross-Government plan for mental health. We are launching a wide-ranging discussion paper and call for evidence to support development of the plan. The Committee’s inquiry and evidence from witnesses will be considered during this process.

Gillian Keegan
Secretary of State for Education
31st Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to respond to the letter dated 23 July 2021 from the hon. Member for Rochdale on treatment for lymphedema.

We replied to the hon. Member on 8 March 2022.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
11th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to respond to the hon. Member for Rochdale’s correspondence dated 8 October 2021 regarding ICS Boards and dated 25 October 2021 regarding training for radiologists and oncologists.

We replied to the hon. Member’s letter dated 8 October 2021 on 31 January 2022 and the letter dated 25 October 2021 on 16 March 2022.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
6th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what funding is available for research into brain tumours; and what research streams on brain tumours the Government is allocating funding to.

In May 2018 the Government announced a £40 million investment over five years for brain tumour research as part of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission, through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR released a public announcement to the research community, making clear our desire to receive brain tumour research funding applications. We are relying on researchers to submit high-quality research proposals.

As with other Government funders of health research, the NIHR does not allocate funding for specific disease areas. The level of research spend in a particular area is driven by factors such as scientific potential and the number and scale of successful funding applications. The NIHR welcomes funding applications for research into any aspect of human health, including brain tumour research.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
6th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what funding the Government is making available for the treatment of brain tumours.

The information is not available in the format requested. Expenditure on the treatment of brain tumours forms part of system budgets for the National Health Service. Funding is made available to Cancer Alliances to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan’s ambitions for all cancers, including brain tumours.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will hold discussions with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on increasing spending on targeted research on motor neurone disease ahead of the 2021 Spending Review.

There are no plans for specific discussions. The Department funds research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). It is not usual practice to ring-fence funding for particular topics or conditions. The NIHR welcomes funding applications for research into any aspect of human health, including motor neurone disease. Applications are subject to peer review and judged in open competition, with awards being made on the basis of the importance of the topic to patients and health and care services, value for money and scientific quality. We are currently working on ways to significantly boost further research on dementia and neurodegeneration at all stages, including medical and care interventions.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
3rd Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 29 July 2021 to Question 35705 on Motor Neurone Disease: Drugs, if he will provide details of the projects relating to Motor Neurone Disease that were funded by the National Institute for Health Research in each of the years between 2015 and 2020.

The information requested is shown in the following table. The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is also funding research on motor neurone disease through the NIHR’s research infrastructure, including the NIHR Sheffield Biomedical Research Centre. However this information is not available at individual study level.

Year

Project

2015/16

Telehealth in Motor Neurone Disease: the TiM trial. A randomised controlled pilot study of the use of the TiM system to deliver highly specialised care to patients and carers of those living with motor neurone disease. * Evaluation of the clinical and cost-effectiveness of Short-term Integrated Palliative Care Services (SIPC) to OPTimise CARE for people with advanced longterm Neurological conditions (OPTCARE Neuro) *

2016/17

Head up: The development of a novel cervical orthosis to support neck weakness due to neurological disease. * Telehealth in Motor Neurone Disease: the TiM trial. A randomised controlled pilot study of the use of the TiM system to deliver highly specialised care to patients and carers of those living with motor neurone disease. *
Evaluation of the clinical and cost-effectiveness of Short-term Integrated Palliative Care Services (SIPC) to OPTimise CARE for people with advanced longterm Neurological conditions (OPTCARE Neuro) *
DiPALS: A randomised controlled trial evaluating NeuRx/4 Diaphragm Pacing in patients with respiratory muscle weakness due to Motor Neurone Disease

2017/18

Telehealth in Motor Neurone Disease: the TiM trial. A randomised controlled pilot study of the use of the TiM system to deliver highly specialised care to patients and carers of those living with motor neurone disease. * Evaluation of the clinical and cost-effectiveness of Short-term Integrated Palliative Care Services (SIPC) to OPTimise CARE for people with advanced longterm Neurological conditions (OPTCARE Neuro) * A feasibility study and randomised controlled trial of acceptance and COMmitment therapy for people with Motor nEuroN Disease (COMMEND) *

2018/19

Telehealth in Motor Neurone Disease: the TiM trial. A randomised controlled pilot study of the use of the TiM system to deliver highly specialised care to patients and carers of those living with motor neurone disease. * A feasibility study and randomised controlled trial of acceptance and COMmitment therapy for people with Motor nEuroN Disease (COMMEND) * Nusinersen for treating infant or child spinal muscular atrophy [ID1069] A programme to develop and evaluate a complex intervention to achieve a high calorie diet for people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (HighCALS) * Enhancing the efficacy of non-invasive ventilation for patients with motor neurone disease: Synthesising the evidence, mapping the services and translating the evidence into clinical practice. *

2019/20

A feasibility study and randomised controlled trial of acceptance and COMmitment therapy for people with Motor nEuroN Disease (COMMEND) * A programme to develop and evaluate a complex intervention to achieve a high calorie diet for people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (HighCALS) * Enhancing the efficacy of non-invasive ventilation for patients with motor neurone disease: Synthesising the evidence, mapping the services and translating the evidence into clinical practice. * Onasemnogene abeparvovec for treating spinal muscular atrophy type 1 [ID1473] - Part 1

2020/21

A feasibility study and randomised controlled trial of acceptance and COMmitment therapy for people with Motor nEuroN Disease (COMMEND) * A programme to develop and evaluate a complex intervention to achieve a high calorie diet for people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (HighCALS) * Enhancing the efficacy of non-invasive ventilation for patients with motor neurone disease: Synthesising the evidence, mapping the services and translating the evidence into clinical practice. * Onasemnogene abeparvovec for treating spinal muscular atrophy type 1[ID1473] - Part 2 Risdiplam for treating spinal muscular atrophy [ID1631]

Note:

* Project funded for multiple years spanning the period 2015-2020.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
21st Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to respond to the correspondence of 25 February 2021 from the hon. Member for Rochdale on the legislative proposals for a Health and Care Bill.

We replied to the hon. Member on 3 September 2021.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
7th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what representations he has received on (a) the efficacy of the Novavax vaccine following its trial and (b) whether volunteers who received two vaccinations as part of the Novavax trial are eligible to receive other types of approved covid-19 vaccines.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has regular meetings with Novavax regarding their submission for the vaccine but this is not yet complete. A review of the quality, safety and efficacy data will be required before the MHRA and Commission on Human Medicines can consider approval of the vaccine.

As trial participants become eligible for the vaccination programme, they should discuss with the trial investigator to decide whether they should receive an approved COVID-19 vaccine. This should be informed by whether they had received a placebo or control vaccine, an active vaccine with known efficacy against COVID-19, an experimental trial vaccine product with no current efficacy data and whether they have received a full proposed or incomplete regimen. There is currently a lack of evidence to inform whether a subsequent dose of a different COVID-19 vaccine after a full regimen of experimental vaccine provides any benefit. Subjects should also be made aware that the risks of receiving the deployed vaccine after the trial vaccine are unknown.

18th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to respond to the letter of 3 March 2021 from the hon. Member for Rochdale on differential pricing policies for covid-19 vaccinations.

We replied to the hon. Member on 21 May 2021.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
26th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when he plans to respond to the letter dated 20 November 2020 from the hon. Member for Rochdale.

We are working to provide all Members and external correspondents with accurate answers to their correspondence, as well as supporting the Government’s response to the unprecedented challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The hon. Member’s letter will be answered as soon as possible.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Ministry of Justice)
9th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, in what circumstances NHS patient information is transferred outside of the NHS; what the protocols are for the transfer of such (a) aggregate anonymised and (b) personal information; what steps are taken to supervise such transfers of information (i) in general, (ii) to a private sector company and (iii) to an entity outside of UK legal jurisdiction.

Confidential patient information is not transferred outside of the National Health Service unless there are strong legitimate and appropriate reasons to do so. Aggregated data may be made publicly available by organisations through their publication schemes as required under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Any data transfer to the public or private sector, inside or outside the United Kingdom, aggregated or personal information, is subject to strict process and procedure and the legal obligations set out in privacy legislation including the Data Protection Act 2018 and the obligations set out by the National Data Guardian and the Common Law Duty of Confidentiality. In addition, from 1 January 2021, the UK General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) applies in the UK in place of the GDPR.

Any use of NHS data that is not already in the public domain must have an explicit aim to improve the health and wellbeing of citizens or to improve how the NHS operates. This would include, for instance, research by universities, clinical audits and clinical trials by pharmaceutical companies.

12th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what his policy is on access to medical cannabis following disruption of supplies after the end of the transition period.

The Department, supported by the British Embassy to The Hague, has reached an agreement with the Dutch Government to allow the continued supply of Bedrocan oils, a form of unlicensed medicinal cannabis, against United Kingdom prescriptions for existing patients until 1 July 2021. The medicines supply chain has ensured that there continues to be good supply of licensed and unlicensed cannabis-based medicines after the transition period.

The Written Ministerial Statement of 26 January (HCWS734) provided an update on action taken by the Government on supply from the Netherlands and next steps to establish a more permanent solution.

Jo Churchill
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
12th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of training for GPs in the early diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis.

General practice is where most patients with musculoskeletal conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are likely to be managed, and the condition is identified as a key area of clinical knowledge in the Royal College of General Practitioners’ Advanced Knowledge Test (AKT) content guide. The AKT is a summative assessment of the knowledge base that underpins general practice in the United Kingdom within the context of the National Health Service and is a key part of general practitioner’s qualifying exams.

No specific assessment has been made on the adequacy of access to specialist rheumatologists, however the National institute for Health and Care Excellence’s (NICE) Quality Standard ‘Rheumatoid arthritis in over 16s’, updated in July 2018, emphasises the need for early for urgent referral to a specialist rheumatologist on suspicion of rheumatoid arthritis within three weeks.

In May 2018, a new three-year Rheumatoid and Early Inflammatory Arthritis Audit was commissioned by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership. The Audit aims to improve the quality of care for people living with inflammatory arthritis, collecting information on all new patients over the age of 16 in specialist rheumatology departments with suspected inflammatory arthritis in England and Wales using criteria derived from sources, including the NICE rheumatoid arthritis Quality Standard. This includes assessment against the NICE standard stating that patients with suspected with RA should be seen within three weeks of referral to a rheumatology service.

More information can be found at the following link:

www.rheumatology.org.uk/Knowledge/Excellence/Audits

The findings of the Audit are due to be published in October 2019. However, previous Audit reports can be found at the following link:

www.hqip.org.uk/national-programmes/a-z-of-nca/arthritis-rheumatoid-and-early-inflammatory

12th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of access to specialist rheumatologists.

General practice is where most patients with musculoskeletal conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are likely to be managed, and the condition is identified as a key area of clinical knowledge in the Royal College of General Practitioners’ Advanced Knowledge Test (AKT) content guide. The AKT is a summative assessment of the knowledge base that underpins general practice in the United Kingdom within the context of the National Health Service and is a key part of general practitioner’s qualifying exams.

No specific assessment has been made on the adequacy of access to specialist rheumatologists, however the National institute for Health and Care Excellence’s (NICE) Quality Standard ‘Rheumatoid arthritis in over 16s’, updated in July 2018, emphasises the need for early for urgent referral to a specialist rheumatologist on suspicion of rheumatoid arthritis within three weeks.

In May 2018, a new three-year Rheumatoid and Early Inflammatory Arthritis Audit was commissioned by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership. The Audit aims to improve the quality of care for people living with inflammatory arthritis, collecting information on all new patients over the age of 16 in specialist rheumatology departments with suspected inflammatory arthritis in England and Wales using criteria derived from sources, including the NICE rheumatoid arthritis Quality Standard. This includes assessment against the NICE standard stating that patients with suspected with RA should be seen within three weeks of referral to a rheumatology service.

More information can be found at the following link:

www.rheumatology.org.uk/Knowledge/Excellence/Audits

The findings of the Audit are due to be published in October 2019. However, previous Audit reports can be found at the following link:

www.hqip.org.uk/national-programmes/a-z-of-nca/arthritis-rheumatoid-and-early-inflammatory

3rd Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of (a) the Manchester Lung Health Check and (b) other lung cancer screening pilots; and what steps his Department is taking to improve early diagnosis of (i) lung cancer and (ii) other lung diseases throughout the country.

The Department considers the Manchester Lung Health Check to have been successful. Two thirds of patients who received a Manchester Lung Health Check and suffered from cancer had the cancer caught at the earliest stage as a result of this check. Diagnosing lung cancer this early increases the chance of survival. Following the success of the Manchester Lung Health Check, NHS England will be running other pilot programmes of low dose CT scanning in clinical commissioning groups with the lowest lung cancer survival rates.

Improving early diagnosis of cancer is a priority for this Government. We have committed to delivering the recommendations in the Cancer Strategy for England, including the new 28 day faster diagnosis standard, and NHS England has confirmed £200 million of transformation funding over the next two years, including encouraging local areas to find new and innovative ways to diagnose cancer earlier.

Improving care for people with other lung diseases is also crucial. This requires continued action to implement existing plans, including the NHS Outcomes Framework, which details National Health Service priority areas and includes reducing deaths from respiratory disease as a key indicator.

3rd Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has made an assessment of the potential merits of a national lung cancer screening programme.

The United Kingdom National Screening Committee (UK NSC) last reviewed the evidence to screen for lung cancer in 2006 and recommended that population screening should not be introduced. This was due to a lack of evidence to support the use of the screen tests within a population screening programme and that the benefit to screen had not been demonstrated. The UK NSC will review the evidence again after the results of the NELSON randomised lung cancer screening trial are published.

The UK NSC recognises that lung cancer is common and unless found at an early stage the outcome is very poor. The Committee is currently working with the National Institute of Health Research to assess the effectiveness and cost of screening heavy smokers for lung cancer.

3rd Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to reduce lung health inequalities in deprived areas.

Two of the most significant respiratory health issues that impact deprived areas are poor air quality and smoking.

Minimising health inequalities is a core part of Public Health England’s (PHE’s) Mission and Strategic Vision for 2020. PHE was commissioned by the Department to review the evidence for effective interventions on air quality and provide recommendations that will significantly reduce harm from air pollution and impact on health inequalities at the local level.

PHE has also published a number of reports on urban design which aim to support reductions in air pollution.

Smoking is a leading cause of a number of respiratory diseases including lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and is the leading cause of health inequalities. The Government’s Tobacco Control Plan for England, published in July 2017, re-emphasises the important role of local areas in providing support for smokers to stop smoking. As part of a comprehensive programme of national and local tobacco control activity, this is an important means of tackling inequalities in lung health in disadvantaged communities.

3rd Jul 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he makes of the benefits of pulmonary rehabilitation for people with chronic breathing problems; and what steps his Department is taking to improve access to pulmonary rehabilitation throughout the country.

Pulmonary rehabilitation can be an effective treatment for many people with chronic lung disease.

NHS England is working with partners to improve the treatment and care for respiratory disease. There have been several recent initiatives to improve care with tools and resources to support local health economies. These include:

- National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and asthma;

- NHS RightCare COPD pathway – which includes pulmonary rehabilitation services; and

- COPD Best Practice Tariff.

The British Thoracic Society has a digital platform, supported by NHS England – ‘Respiratory Futures’, which enables collaboration in the respiratory community to support high quality respiratory care.

28th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect of the delay to publishing the green paper on social care on people who are not receiving an adequate level of care.

It is important to take the time to get the details right for a better care system, so that people receive high standards of care, helping them maintain their independence and well-being. This is why we want to integrate plans for social care with the new National Health Service plan, we therefore now intend to publish the social care Green Paper in the autumn around the same time as the NHS plan.

In the meantime, all councils have statutory duties to look after the vulnerable, elderly and disabled people in their area. The Care Act 2014 requires that where a person is assessed as having eligible care and support needs, these must be met by their local authority. For those who do not meet the eligibility criteria, local authorities should signpost people to relevant services.

The Care Act 2014 also placed a new duty on councils to offer a meaningful choice of services, so that people have a range of high quality, appropriate care options to choose from and that they get the services that best meet their needs.

The Government recognises the pressures on the social care system. This is why the Government announced an additional £2 billion at Spring Budget 2017 for adult social care over the three years from 2017-18. With this, and other measures, the Government has given councils access to £9.4 billion dedicated funding for adult social care over three years.

27th Jun 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the (a) Green Paper on Social Care, and (b) parallel work-stream on working-age adults will include proposals for financial support for carers.

Carers need to be at the heart of discussions on a sustainable settlement for social care. As well as making an invaluable difference to the people they support, carers are vital partners in the health and social care system.

The Green Paper will, therefore, include a focus on how society supports carers to ensure that they are properly valued, recognised and supported to provide care in a way that supports their own health and wellbeing. Further details will be included in the Green Paper.

The workstream on working age adults will consider issues which uniquely affect working age adults. As caring is relevant to people of all ages, issues affecting carers will be included in the Green Paper.

Carers have access to the full range of social security benefits according to their circumstances. Since 2010, the rate of Carer’s Allowance has increased from £53.90 to £64.60 a week, meaning an additional £550 a year for carers.

9th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, by what date he plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale dated 13 March 2018 reference number IW/0038.

I responded to the hon. Member’s letter today (14 May).

Steve Barclay
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
6th Feb 2018
What estimate his Department has made of the number of GPs who plan to leave general practice in the next five years; and if he will make a statement.

We know that one of the main reasons GPs leave general practice is retirement. That is why we have put in place comprehensive measures to ensure we meet our commitment of an extra 5,000 GPs in the NHS by 2020. GP Career Plus, the GP Retention Scheme and the National GP Induction and Refresher Scheme will all help get valuable experienced GPs back into our NHS. 3,157 GP training places were also filled in 2017 – the highest number ever.

12th Dec 2023
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what steps he is taking to encourage Organ on Politics, Defence and Security of the South African Development Community to support a political settlement in Zimbabwe.

The UK is committed to maintaining a constructive dialogue with the Government of Zimbabwe to support governance and economic reforms. The Minister for Development and Africa released a statement on 31 August echoing the concerns expressed by various International Election Observation Mission Reports that Zimbabwe's elections fell short of regional and international standards. The Minister met with President Mnangagwa both before and after the elections, most recently at COP28. As part of these engagements, the Minister has expressed the UK's desire to see reforms implemented and greater space for civil society organisations to operate. We are in regular ministerial level discussions with our Southern African Development Community (SADC) counterparts on Zimbabwe and engage with partners across a wide range of multilateral fora.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
12th Dec 2023
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what steps he is taking in the UN Security Council to (a) encourage international support for a political settlement in Zimbabwe and (b) help ensure civil society organisations can participate effectively in steps towards a settlement.

The UK is committed to maintaining a constructive dialogue with the Government of Zimbabwe to support governance and economic reforms. The Minister for Development and Africa released a statement on 31 August echoing the concerns expressed by various International Election Observation Mission Reports that Zimbabwe's elections fell short of regional and international standards. The Minister met with President Mnangagwa both before and after the elections, most recently at COP28. As part of these engagements, the Minister has expressed the UK's desire to see reforms implemented and greater space for civil society organisations to operate. We are in regular ministerial level discussions with our Southern African Development Community (SADC) counterparts on Zimbabwe and engage with partners across a wide range of multilateral fora.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
12th Dec 2023
To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, what steps his Department is taking to (a) engage with the Zimbabwean authorities on a political settlement, (b) share lessons learnt from other peace processes and (c) support civil society engagement.

The UK is committed to maintaining a constructive dialogue with the Government of Zimbabwe to support governance and economic reforms. The Minister for Development and Africa released a statement on 31 August echoing the concerns expressed by various International Election Observation Mission Reports that Zimbabwe's elections fell short of regional and international standards. The Minister met with President Mnangagwa both before and after the elections, most recently at COP28. As part of these engagements, the Minister has expressed the UK's desire to see reforms implemented and greater space for civil society organisations to operate. We are in regular ministerial level discussions with our Southern African Development Community (SADC) counterparts on Zimbabwe and engage with partners across a wide range of multilateral fora.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of allegations of involvement of the Pakistani (a) intelligence services and (b) military in (i) enforced disappearances and (ii) secret detention in that country.

We engage regularly with the Government of Pakistan to advance key priorities and interests, including on human rights and the rule of law. The Foreign Secretary raised the current human rights situation in Pakistan with Prime Minister Kakar on 25 September. The UK strongly condemns any instances of enforced disappearances and urges Pakistan to investigate any allegations and prosecute those responsible. We continue to encourage progress towards the criminalisation of enforced disappearance in Pakistan. Where there are allegations of human rights violations, we expect these to be fully investigated in line with international human rights law.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what recent representations he has made to his Pakistani counterpart on forced disappearances in that country.

We engage regularly with the Government of Pakistan to advance key priorities and interests, including on human rights and the rule of law. The Foreign Secretary raised the current human rights situation in Pakistan with Prime Minister Kakar on 25 September. The UK strongly condemns any instances of enforced disappearances and urges Pakistan to investigate any allegations and prosecute those responsible. We continue to encourage progress towards the criminalisation of enforced disappearance in Pakistan. Where there are allegations of human rights violations, we expect these to be fully investigated in line with international human rights law.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether he has made representations to his (a) Pakistani and (b) Indian counterparts about reports of involvement by their officials in repression in the UK.

The UK Government takes the protection of individuals' rights, freedoms and safety very seriously. We are clear that all diplomatic missions must respect UK sovereignty and law, and that we will respond appropriately to any attempts by foreign governments to coerce, intimidate or harm individuals within the UK. We will continue to work through the inter-governmental Defending Democracy Taskforce to protect democratic processes, institutions, and society from threats of foreign interference.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
13th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment he has made of democratic standards at the June 2023 elections in Sierra Leone; and what representations the Government made on democratic standards to (a) President Bio and (b) electoral authorities in Sierra Leone (i) before and (ii) after those elections.

We noted a number of discrepancies in the election process. These have been communicated to the Government of Sierra Leone and elections management bodies. It remains vital that political leaders engage with efforts to support Sierra Leone's democratic process.

We have engaged stakeholders including the government, opposition, election bodies and the international community, in the months leading up to, during and after the elections. We have given consistent messaging on good governance, the rule of law and the importance of free, fair and peaceful elections. The Foreign Secretary raised these issues during his visit to Sierra Leone in March and in a telephone call with President Bio on 7 August.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
17th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether his Department plans to make sexual and reproductive health and rights a priority in the upcoming White Paper on international development.

The Government will publish an International Development White Paper later this year. It will set out how the UK will lead the charge against extreme poverty and climate change in a changing world. The FCDO global health directorate will engage with this process.

Sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) are central to the UK's international development agenda. SRHR features strongly in our approach to end the preventable deaths of mothers, babies and children (EPD), the international development strategy, and our recently published international women and girls' strategy.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
19th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps his Department is taking in its role as penholder for the Colombian peace process in the UN Security Council to maintain the international community’s support for implementation of that country’s peace accords.

The UK has been a leading international advocate of Colombia's peace process. Supporting the Colombian Government's commitment to implement the 2016 Peace Accords remains an important priority. We are the second largest UN Trust Fund donor, and work with fellow UN Security Council members to support the peace process in Colombia. During the most recent Security Council meeting on Colombia in April, Security Council members reiterated their unanimous and full support for the peace process in Colombia.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
19th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what discussions he has had with the Colombian government on the reforms to the National Police proposed by the Colombian President; and what steps he has taken to raise concerns of human rights organisations over these reforms.

Since 2015, the UK has committed £80 million through the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) to support the peace process and improve stability and security in Colombia. As part of the CSSF funding in Colombia, the UK launched a three-year, £2.1 million Police Innovations for Stabilisation in Colombia Programme (SCIP) in 2020, which is helping support the transformation of the Colombian National Police.

The UK's Global Ambassador for Human Rights, Rita French, met with civil society organisations and the Colombian Government to discuss the importance of civil society participation in peace and security issues during her visit to Colombia in April.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 18 May to Question 184795 on Deep Sea Mining, what discussions the UK delegation to the International Seabed Authority plans to have with fellow members of that organisation’s Council on their position on the issuing of deep-sea mining licences before there is (a) sufficient scientific evidence about the potential impact on deep-sea ecosystems and (b) strong enforceable environmental regulations, standards and guidelines have been developed by the International Seabed Authority and are in place.

The UK is fully engaged in the ongoing negotiations, at the International Seabed Authority (ISA) Council and Assembly in Kingston, Jamaica, to agree deep sea mining exploitation regulations. This takes the form of intersessional meetings and discussions before, during and after the ISA Council and Assembly. The UK recognises the growing pressure to extract deep-sea resources, and is deeply worried about the potential impacts of mining activities on the fragile marine environment.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether he has had discussions with his Colombian counterpart on mandatory requirements for the registration of civil society organisations as contained in the proposed Article 77 of the Colombian National Development Plan.

As penholder at the UN Security Council, the UK consistently raises the importance of the participation of civil society to realise the full benefits of the 2016 Peace Agreement in Colombia and securing sustainable peace across the country. The UK's Global Ambassador for Human Rights, Rita French, also met with the Colombian Government to discuss UK support to civil society organisations and the importance of civil society's participation in the peace process during her visit to Colombia last month. Colombia is a Human Rights Priority Country and we will continue to monitor any impacts that limit our ability to support civil society organisations.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether he has had discussions with his Colombian counterpart on ensuring participation by (a) civil society and people affected by the armed conflict and (b) women and ethnic communities in the peace talks with the Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional.

During his visit to Colombia last week, the Foreign Secretary met with President Petro to discuss our ongoing support to Colombia's peace process and to addressing other security challenges. Since 2015, we have spent over £77 million through the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) to support the implementation of the 2016 Peace Agreement in Colombia, which includes strengthening the security and participation of the communities in conflict-affected areas. The UK's Global Ambassador for Human Rights, Rita French, also met with the Colombian Government and discussed the importance of civil society's participation in the peace process during her visit to Colombia last month.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
12th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what discussions he has had with the International Seabed Authority on whether it would issue exploitation licences for deep-sea mining projects prior to the establishment of sufficient evidence about the potential impact on deep-sea ecosystems.

The UK is fully engaged in the ongoing negotiations at the International Seabed Authority (ISA) Council and Assembly in Kingston, Jamaica, to agree deep sea mining exploitation regulations.

The UK's policy is not to sponsor or support the issuing of any exploitation licences for deep sea mining projects unless and until there is sufficient scientific evidence about the potential impact on deep sea ecosystems and strong enforceable environmental Regulations, Standards and Guidelines have been developed by the ISA and are in place. The UK's approach is both precautionary and conditional.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
17th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment he has made of the arrest by the Belarusian authorities of former presidential candidate Andrey Dmitriev.

The detention of Andrey Dzmitryeu is a further unacceptable act of repression by the Belarusian authorities. It is the right of citizens in a democracy to stand in elections. Mr Dzmitryeu should not face persecution for his political views.

There are nearly 1500 political prisoners in Belarus and we urge authorities to release them all, immediately and unconditionally. We continue to work on accountability measures for human rights violations, including through the International Accountability Platform for Belarus and our sanctions regime.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, how much his Department spent on international development targeted primarily at (a) the delivery of and (b) research into healthcare services in the last five years.

From 2017 - 2021, the FCDO spent more than £4.5 billion on activities that primarily support the delivery of health services, and more than £730 million on global health research.

Between 2016 and 2021, FCDO supported Gavi to vaccinate 324 million children, averting 6.9 million deaths. Between 2015 and 2020, FCDO reached an average of 25.3 million total women and girls with modern methods of family planning per year, and reached 55.1 million young children, women and adolescent girls through our nutrition programmes. In Nepal, sustained UK support has helped to increase the proportion of women giving birth in health facilities from 9% in 2001 to 80% in 2022.

FCDO's investment in health research has supported the development of 11 new drugs for malaria, including a child friendly malaria treatment that is used in more than 50 countries, more than 20 diagnostics for faster and more reliable detection of tuberculosis, malaria, sleeping sickness and COVID-19, and a new vaccine for rotavirus.

The spend figure provided for activities that primarily support, directly or indirectly, the delivery of health services includes all activities under the OECD-DAC Creditor Reporting System sector codes for 'Health, General', 'Basic Health', 'Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs)' and 'Population Policies/Programmes & Reproductive Health', excluding 'Medical research' (12182) and 'Research for prevention and control of NCDs' (12382). Further information can be found in the Statistics on International Development: final UK aid spend 2021 (https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/statistics-on-international-development-final-uk-aid-spend-2021).

Year

Activities that support delivery of health services

2017

£1,018,870,299

2018

£936,597,525

2019

£958,566,780

2020

£1,041,225,156

2021

£559,469,940

Total

£4,514,729,701


The total spend on global health research by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office's central Research and Evidence Directorate over the last five financial years is as follows:

Financial year

Total spend on global health research

2018/19

£132,330,000

2019/20

£155,410,000

2020/21

£371,860,000

2021/22

£75,330,000

2022/23

Final and audited spend for 2022/23 will be published in our annual report at the end of the financial year

Total

£734,930,000

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
8th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether he has met with Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya since his appointment.

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya last visited the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office on 9 March 2022, where she met the Rt. Hon. James Cleverly, then Minister for Europe. Although there are currently no firm plans in place for a future visit, the UK remains in regular contact with Mrs Tsikanouskaya and other prominent Belarusian civil society figures.

The UK Government continues to urge the Belarusian authorities to end their repression of their own citizens, enter into an inclusive dialogue with the democratic opposition and civil society, and offer the Belarusian people the genuine choice of government that they both want and deserve.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
7th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, with reference to the Statistics on International Development: Final UK Aid Spend 2021, published 12 April 2022, what assessment he has made of the implications for his Department's policies of the trends in the level of funding for (a) reproductive health programmes and (b) the United Nations Population Fund's thematic programme.

The UK is committed to promoting and defending comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), and to working with our partners to drive progress. Family planning is an important part of our programming on reproductive health. At the 2017 Family Planning Summit, the UK committed to spend an average of £225 million on family planning each year to 2022. The UK has exceeded that commitment, spending an average of approximately £246 million on family planning every year between April 2017 and March 2022. The UK continue to be an important partner and significant funder of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

The FCDO works closely with HM Treasury to ensure that aid spend is directed towards our priorities in line with the International Development Strategy, meeting the UK Government's commitment to spend 0.5% of Gross National Income (GNI) on Official Development Assistance until the fiscal situation allows a return to 0.7%. Comprehensive SRHR is integral to achieving the commitments in the International Development Strategy on women and girls and global health.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
7th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, if he will publish a detailed budget heading for sexual and reproductive health and rights programmes.

The UK is proud to defend and promote universal and comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) alongside our partners. The UK International Development Strategy involves support for women and girls including comprehensive SRHR, and will guide aid prioritisation decisions. Comprehensive SRHR is central to achieving the commitments in the International Development Strategy on women and girls and global health, and the Government's manifesto commitment to end the preventable deaths of mothers, newborns, and children by 2030.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
7th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to advance gender equality globally.

The FCDO puts women and girls at the heart of its foreign and development policy. As set out in the International Development Strategy, the UK has prioritised action guided by the 3E's: 'Educating Girls, Empowering Women and Ending Violence against women and girls', including using our full range of levers to address the attempted global rollback on women's and girls' rights.

As just one example, at the recent UN General Assembly Third Committee on Human Rights (https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/we-must-respect-the-bodily-autonomy-of-women-and-girls-throughout-their-lives-cross-regional-joint-statement-at-the-un-third-committee), the UK co-led a landmark joint statement with 71 signatory countries, committing to protect and promote Sexual, Reproductive Health and Rights, therefore showing strong UK leadership on gender equality.

Andrew Mitchell
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development)
17th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether he has had discussions with the Russian Government on the case of British citizen Vladimir Kara-Murza who is imprisoned in Russia.

British Embassy officials have attended Vladimir Kara-Murza's court hearings with other international partners, the last hearing being 24 October. We remain vigilant to attempts by the Russian government to exclude diplomats from future court hearings following Mr Kara-Murza's additional treason charge. HMA Moscow raised the issue of consular access with the Russian MFA. In May, the Foreign Secretary met Mr Kara-Murza's wife, in his previous role as Minister for Europe, and emphasised his determination to continue raising Mr Kara-Murza's case at multilateral fora, including the OSCE. We note the Canadian government's sanctions relating to Mr Kara-Murza. We do not comment on future sanctions designations.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
17th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether he has received representations from relevant stakeholders on the imprisonment of British citizen Vladimir Kara-Murza in Russia.

British Embassy officials have attended Vladimir Kara-Murza's court hearings with other international partners, the last hearing being 24 October. We remain vigilant to attempts by the Russian government to exclude diplomats from future court hearings following Mr Kara-Murza's additional treason charge. HMA Moscow raised the issue of consular access with the Russian MFA. In May, the Foreign Secretary met Mr Kara-Murza's wife, in his previous role as Minister for Europe, and emphasised his determination to continue raising Mr Kara-Murza's case at multilateral fora, including the OSCE. We note the Canadian government's sanctions relating to Mr Kara-Murza. We do not comment on future sanctions designations.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
14th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, with reference to the International Labour Organisation's November 2021 report, One is too many: The collection and analysis of data on occupational injuries in Qatar, what representations he has made to his Qatari counterpart on the unexplained deaths of thousands of migrant workers over the last 10 years in connection with World Cup-related and private construction projects.

We welcome the steps Qatar has taken to date on workers' rights, with the priority now the full implementation and enforcement of those reforms. We encourage continued close collaboration between the Government of Qatar and the International Labour Organization (ILO) during the second phase of their technical cooperation programme. The former Minister for the Middle East met the Qatari Minister for Labour in July to discuss this issue. The UK Migration and Modern Slavery Envoy visited Doha on 9 October for a range of meetings to discuss how the UK can partner with Qatar and the ILO to support further progress in 2023. We look forward to a sustained partnership that supports continued advancement on this important issue translating into tangible progress for migrant workers.

David Rutley
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
15th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether the Government has plans to align the sanctions it has imposed against Belarus with those it has imposed against Russia.

We will ensure that the Belarusian regime continues to feel the economic consequences for its facilitation of Putin's war of choice. On 5 July, the UK introduced new economic, trade and transport sanctions against Belarus, including import and export bans on goods and restricting access to UK financial services.  This follows on from our sanctions imposed on Lukashenko and 117 other individuals and entities. These sanctions deliver commitments made by the Foreign Secretary in February to extend those sanctions against persons in Russia who support Putin's illegal war, to include people or entities in Belarus.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
15th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether her Department is providing support to former FARC combatants in Colombia forcibly displaced to Doncello, Caquetá in the context of a lack of security in their reincorporation zone.

To date, the UK has spent over £69 million through the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) to support the implementation of the Peace Agreement in Colombia. Our funding is supporting the Colombian Government's rural development and reintegration programmes, transitional justice mechanisms, and strengthening the security and participation of the communities in conflict-affected areas, such as Caquetá.

We will continue to support the Colombian Government in its commitment to implement the 2016 Peace Accords and ensure the protection and safety of former FARC combatants.

22nd Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, with reference to her oral contribution of 28 February 2022, Official Report, column 724, in response to the question from the hon. Member for Rochdale, whether she has determined whether a breach of the sanctions regime took place in respect of a sanctioned jet twice landing at Luton Airport in January; and what steps she plans to take to determine how such a breach occurred in the event that it did.

The UK and our partners continue to put pressure on the Lukashenko regime and those who support it, including through tough sanctions. On 1 March we announced a first tranche of sanctions against Belarusian individuals and organisations in response to the role the country is playing in Russia's invasion of Ukraine, including facilitating the invasion from within its borders. These designations are in addition to the wide-ranging measures we have already imposed on Belarus under our Belarus sanctions regime, which include sanctions on President Lukashenko and 117 other individuals and entities as well as trade, financial and aviation sanctions. The UK's Belarus sanctions prohibit the direct or indirect provision of technical assistance to or for the benefit of designated persons, where that assistance relates to any aircraft. HM Revenue and Customs are responsible for enforcing trade sanctions measures on the provision of technical assistance.

14th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether her Department has made an assessment of the impact of the reduction in the Official Development Assistance budget on the humanitarian response in Syria.

The UK works closely with our humanitarian partners, such as the UN, International and Syrian NGOs to understand the impact of UK aid spending and will continue to keep this under review. Despite difficult funding decisions due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the UK remains a leading humanitarian donor to Syria. To date, we have committed over £3.7 billion in response to the regional Syrian crisis, our largest ever response to a single humanitarian crisis. Our focus remains on protecting and prioritising the most vulnerable and ensuring our aid is delivered in the most effective and efficient way. Our aid to Syria this financial year has supported the distribution of 3,125 food rations with each individual's ration covering their needs for a month. In addition, our support ensured that 12,556 people benefitted from psychosocial support, 170,399 pupils were provided with access to formal education and 20,633 people benefited from sexual and gender-based violence services.

Amanda Milling
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
14th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps she is taking to work with (a) other donors and (b) the UNHCR to strengthen support for (i) mechanisms to monitor the protection situation in Syria and (ii) the conditions for safe, voluntary and dignified returns in that country.

The UK, along with the likeminded international community, continue to call upon all parties to the conflict in Syria to uphold International Humanitarian Law and protect civilians. The UK supports humanitarian, accountability and legal organisations to monitor, document, report, gather evidence on and investigate human rights and international humanitarian law violations.

Whilst the UK Government hopes that Syrian refugees will, ultimately, be able to return home, we agree with the UN judgement that conditions in Syria do not currently allow this. We are engaged with UNHCR on its framework review which will address these issues more closely. However, only a political solution under UN Security Council Resolution 2254 can ensure conditions safe for returns. UN Envoy Geir Pedersen has our full support in this effort.

Amanda Milling
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
21st Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what her policy is on (a) the legitimacy of the presidency of Mr Lukashenko and (b) UK recognition of any international agreements which the Lukashenko regime has entered into.

The UK has never accepted the results of the 2020 Belarusian Presidential election, which was neither free nor fair. We support the findings in Professor Benedek's November 2020 report to the OSCE that the processes of the election were fraudulent and the results falsified. As such, Lukashenko's claim to the Presidency lacks legitimacy. We continue to call on the Belarusian regime to hold new elections that are free and fair, meet international standards, and are subject to independent local and international observation. It is the longstanding policy of the UK to recognise states, not governments or individuals.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
21st Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, if the Government will raise at the UN the reporting of the regime in Belarus to the International Criminal Court to investigate the Lukashenko regime in respect of (a) torture allegations as documented by the International Accountability Platform for Belarus, (b) the interception of RyanAir Flight FR4978 in May 2021 and (c) the recent immigrant crisis on the Poland-Belarus border.

The UK has been clear in its condemnation of the Belarusian regime's harmful and aggressive behaviour, including the continued repression of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the people of Belarus. There is not an international body where we would not be willing to exert our influence and lead on applying pressure to the Lukashenko regime. We continue to support efforts through UN and other international mechanisms, and the work of independent NGOs, to investigate human rights violations in Belarus and hold those responsible to account. We have received the final fact-finding investigation report from the International Civil Aviation Organisation into the forced diversion of Ryanair flight 4978, which we are studying carefully. We remain in solidarity with our Polish and Lithuanian counterparts and will continue to work to counter the behaviour of the Lukashenko regime, including the use of migrant flows to exert pressure on Belarus' neighbours.

Chris Heaton-Harris
Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
2nd Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what plans she has for engagement in the Vienna conference on Belarus due to take place on 22 November 2021.

The UK has taken a leading role in the international response to the Belarusian political crisis, working closely with partners. We welcome opportunities to maintain the spotlight on the shocking actions of the Belarusian authorities and to keep pressure on Lukashenko to change his behaviour. UK officials are in touch with their Austrian colleagues regarding planning for the upcoming conference on Belarus, including the question of UK participation.

12th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what the evidential basis was for the decision to remove AGAT System from the consolidated list of financial sanctions targets in the UK.

The designation of AGAT System was insufficiently clear as to which entity was to be designated. The UK has therefore revoked the listing for AGAT System with immediate effect. The UK makes decisions on whether or not to designate each person under powers provided by the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018 and the relevant sanctions regulations.

We have imposed over 100 designations in response to the fraudulent elections and the subsequent human rights violations in Belarus. We will continue to keep all evidence and potential listings under close review, guided by the objectives of the UK Belarus sanctions regime.

9th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what plans he has to reinstate the visit by Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, following its deferment from 12 May 2021.

As my Rt Hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary made clear during his 2 June phone call with Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, he looks forward to meeting her in London soon. FCDO officials are in contact with Ms Tsikhanouskaya's office to agree a mutually convenient date.

20th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, whether the Government's support for the transformation of the Colombian National Police includes a disestablishment from the Colombian Ministry of Defence as called for by human rights organisations in that country.

The internal structures of the Colombian Government and state are a matter for that Government.

20th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, if he will make a statement in response to the reported human rights abuses committed by the national police during protests in Colombia in April and May 2021.

The UK supports the right of all Colombians to protest peacefully, and the right to peaceful assembly and association must be guaranteed. I reiterated this message via social media on 6 May, which followed up on similar public messaging from our Embassy in Bogotá on 4, 5, and 7 May.

Colombia is a UK 'Human Rights Priority Country,' and we have raised our concerns with the relevant state actors in Colombia since protests began. Most recently, I spoke with acting Foreign Minister Adriana Mejía on 14 May to express my concerns, and welcome Colombia's commitment to transparent investigations into allegations of abuse.

18th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, when he plans to respond to the correspondence of 5 March 2021 from the hon. Member for Rochdale on the Counter-Daesh Update.

A reply was sent to the hon. Member on 21 May.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
3rd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps he has taken to pursue the ambition of free and fair elections in Belarus since November 2020; and what assessment he has made of the effect of controls on the capacity of the Government in Belarus to raise capital using (a) the London Stock Exchange and (b) other UK financial institutions.

The UK is working with our international partners to promote a political settlement in Belarus, which is acceptable to the Belarusian people. We continue to put pressure on the regime through sanctions, including on economic actors, and raising our concerns in international fora, including the OSCE, the UN Human Rights Council and informal Arria-formula meetings of the UN Security Council. We are supporting and promoting the democratic and political rights of the Belarusian people, through increased funding to civil society organisations, including independent media. On 1 February, the Foreign Secretary expressed the UK's support for new elections in his call with the opposition leader, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya. The UK is one of the largest shareholders in the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). The Bank has announced it will not support further Belarusian sovereign projects. Like the EBRD, we remain committed to supporting investment into the Belarusian economy where it supports the Belarusian people. Controls on the UK financial markets and institutions falls within the mandate of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

2nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps the UK Government is taking to tackle the humanitarian harm caused by the use of explosive weapons in populated areas.

In August 2020 HMG published the UK's approach to the protection of civilians in armed conflict. The paper summarises the UK's Protection of Civilians activity in seven UK commitment areas including: ensuring respect for International Humanitarian Law in UK military operations; political engagement; strengthening accountability; and humanitarian action.

James Cleverly
Home Secretary
22nd Jun 2021
What recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of the support available to businesses in response to the covid-19 outbreak.

Throughout the pandemic, the Government has sought to protect people’s jobs and livelihoods while also supporting businesses and public services across the UK.

We have put in place an economic package of support totalling £352 billion through the furlough and self-employed income support schemes, support for businesses through grants and loans, business rates and VAT relief.

At the Budget, the Chancellor extended this package of economic support to accommodate even the most cautious view about the time it might take to exit restrictions and to provide certainty and continuity to business. The Government continues to keep all impacts and policies under review.

Steve Barclay
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
13th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what her Department's aims, purpose and forward plans are for the Overseas Domestic Worker Advisory Group; on what date that group last met; and when the group's next scheduled meeting is.

The Government engages with a wide range of stakeholders on policy development concerning immigration routes, including Overseas Domestic Worker visas, and will continue to do so in future. The last meeting of the Overseas Domestic Worker Advisory Group was on 19 October 2022 and the date of the next such meeting is to be determined.

5th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to help tackle (a) the charging of illegal fees in the recruitment process and (b) exploitative working conditions for care workers recruited from overseas.

The Home Office’s sponsor licence system places clear and binding requirements and obligations on employers looking to recruit and manage overseas employees. Should an employer be found to be in breach of these requirements we will take action and can remove their ability to recruit from overseas.

The Department of Health and Social Care has published guidance on applying for jobs from abroad as part of wider efforts to address concerns about exploitative recruitment and employment practices. It aims to help prospective overseas candidates make informed decisions when seeking health or social care jobs in the UK and includes information on how to avoid exploitation and where to report concerns and/or access wider support or help in the UK. The guidance can be found here (www.gov.uk/government/publications/applying-for-health-and-social-care-jobs-in-the-uk-from-abroad/applying-for-health-and-social-care-jobs-in-the-uk-from-abroad

The recently updated Code of Practice for the International Recruitment of Health and Social Care Personnel also sets stronger ethical standards which providers and recruiters should ensure they meet when recruiting internationally. The Code of Practice can be found here (www.gov.uk/government/publications/code-of-practice-for-the-international-recruitment-of-health-and-social-care-personnel/code-of-practice-for-the-international-recruitment-of-health-and-social-care-personnel-in-england

Providers should only engage with agencies and other recruiting organisations that are on the Code of Practice Ethical Recruiters List organisations on this list have committed to adhering to the Code of Practice. The list can be found here ((www.nhsemployers.org/articles/ethical-recruiters-list)

5th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 5 June 2023 to Question 186612 on Police: Workplace Pensions, if she will make it her policy to seek information on the number of serving police officers who opted out of the police pension scheme within the last ten years in each force.

Each Chief Constable is responsible for the administration of the police pension scheme for their force. This includes collecting and holding any data relevant to the running of the scheme.

The Home Office works with the Police Pension Scheme Advisory Board and the National Police Chiefs’ Council to understand how forces are managing their pension scheme and how members and officers are using the scheme.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
5th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 5 June 2023 to Question 186612 on Police: Workplace Pensions, what information she holds on the number of police officers by force who have left the police service for reasons other than retirement.

The Home Office collects and publishes data annually on the number of police officers leaving the police service in the ‘Police Workforce, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. Data on the number of police officers who’ve left the police service, by leaver type, can be accessed in the ‘Police Workforce Leavers Open Data Table’ here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1093591/open-data-table-police-workforce-leavers-270722.ods. The latest data covers leavers in the year ending March 2022.

The next release of the ‘Police workforce, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin, which will cover leavers in the year ending March 2023, is scheduled for release at 9.30am on Wednesday 26th July.

Across England and Wales, we now have 149,572 officers, more than at any time in history and 3,542 more than the previous peak in 2010.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
24th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what information her Department holds on the number of serving police officers that have opted out of the police pension scheme.

The Home Office does not publish information on the number of serving police officers that have opted out of the police pension scheme.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the number of serving police officers in England and Wales, on a bi-annual basis in the ‘Police Workforce, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. The Home Office also provides a quarterly update on the number of police officers (headcount terms only), as part of the Police Officer Uplift Programme, in the ‘Police Officer Uplift’ statistical bulletin.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
19th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what information her Department holds on the number of sex offenders who have had restrictions placed on them to prevent them from changing their name through a (a) sexual harm prevention or (b) sexual risk order.

The UK has some of the toughest powers in the world to deal with sex offenders and those who pose a risk, and we are committed to ensuring that the system is as robust as it can be.

Data on the number of convictions for breaches of the notification requirements for registered sex offenders is published by the Ministry of Justice in the Multi-Agency Public Protection arrangements (MAPPA) annual report, which is available here: MAPPA_Annual_Report_2022.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk). The most recent report showed that the number of offenders cautioned or convicted for breaches of their notification requirements in 2021-2 was 1,905.

Data on the number of prosecutions of registered sex offenders who fail to inform the police of their name change the number who have had restrictions placed on them relating to name change are not collated centrally. The courts can, however, place a range of restrictions or requirements on offenders through sexual harm prevention orders and sexual risk orders to mitigate the risk of sexual harm.

19th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate she has made of the number of prosecutions of registered sex offenders who fail to inform the police of their name change in a timely manner.

The UK has some of the toughest powers in the world to deal with sex offenders and those who pose a risk, and we are committed to ensuring that the system is as robust as it can be.

Data on the number of convictions for breaches of the notification requirements for registered sex offenders is published by the Ministry of Justice in the Multi-Agency Public Protection arrangements (MAPPA) annual report, which is available here: MAPPA_Annual_Report_2022.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk). The most recent report showed that the number of offenders cautioned or convicted for breaches of their notification requirements in 2021-2 was 1,905.

Data on the number of prosecutions of registered sex offenders who fail to inform the police of their name change the number who have had restrictions placed on them relating to name change are not collated centrally. The courts can, however, place a range of restrictions or requirements on offenders through sexual harm prevention orders and sexual risk orders to mitigate the risk of sexual harm.

17th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has made an assessment of the potential merits of introducing a fee waiver for applications for indefinite leave to remain.

The right to stay indefinitely is one of the most valuable entitlements offered for those seeking to enter or remain in the UK, and it is right that the fee should be higher than most for migrants staying temporarily in the UK.

A grant of indefinite leave to remain is not necessary to enable people to remain in the UK on the basis of their Article 8 or other ECHR rights, as these can be met through a grant of limited leave to remain. The provision of an affordability-based waiver for limited leave on family and private life routes allows an individual or family to remain here lawfully, and to then apply for settlement and pay the fee when the funds become available. As such, there are no plans to waive the fee for indefinite leave to remain.

17th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will make an estimate of the number of people who are expected to apply for indefinite leave to remain after completing the 10-year route based on their family or private life in the next five years.

The data requested is not available in a reportable format.

14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will make an assessment of the impact of the 10-year route to settlement on levels of integration in the period since 2012; and if she will make a statement.

Those who meet all eligibility and specified evidential requirements of the Family Immigration Rules are granted on a five-year route to settlement (granted in two periods of 30 months, with a third application for indefinite leave to remain). Those who cannot or do not meet these requirements, or seek to rely on their private life, instead have a 10 year route to settlement (granted in four periods of 30 months, with a fifth application for indefinite leave to remain). This reflects our obligations under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The 10 year route provides additional time for those applicants to better integrate into British society by being able to achieve an appropriate knowledge of the English language which, in turn, will enable them to obtain employment and take a full and active part in their community.

We are in the process of simplifying the immigration system, including the 10 year routes to settlement. As part of this simplification the impact of existing policies will be taken into account.

14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many people are waiting for the outcome of an application for further leave to remain; and how many and what proportion of those people have limited leave to remain on the 10-year route to settlement on the basis of their family or private lives.

We do not currently hold any information regarding the proportion of these people who might have limited leave to remain in the UK and are consequently awaiting a decision on a visa extension application are on the ten-year route to settlement.

14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether her Department has taken recent steps to increase processing times for applications to extend limited leave to remain; and if she will make a statement.

UK Visas and Immigration are currently operating within their global customer service standards across all of the main legal migration routes for customers who make an entry clearance application from overseas and for applications made inside the UK.

Details of current performance against these customer service standards are updated regularly and can be found at:

Visa decision waiting times: applications outside the UK - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)(opens in a new tab).

Visa decision waiting times: applications inside the UK - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

14th Apr 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many people applied for indefinite leave to remain after completing the 10-year route to settlement based on their family or private life since 2012.

The information requested could not be obtained without disproportionate cost.

30th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to help ensure the welfare of people using Seasonal Worker visas (a) at their point of recruitment in their countries of origin and (b) recruited through licenced scheme operators; and if she will take steps to provide additional welfare protections for people recruited through third party recruiters used by licenced scheme operators.

The sponsor licence regime places a broad range of responsibilities on Scheme Operators to ensure that the rights of migrant workers are protected.

The UK government however has no legal jurisdiction to regulate recruitment taking place outside of the United Kingdom. Although the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) has no remit to investigate labour abuse and exploitation in other countries, it nonetheless works through our Embassies to put relevant regulatory bodies in contact with their opposite numbers.

We have made ongoing enhancements to the worker welfare protections throughout the lifetime of the Seasonal Work route and we are continuing to keep the route under close review.

30th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she plans to take steps to ensure that all actors and intermediaries recruiting workers for the seasonal workers scheme are licensed by the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority.

It is a requirement to be licensed with the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority at all times as a scheme operator on the Seasonal Worker immigration route.

The operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms, and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations.

28th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 21 March 2023 to Question 165227 on Agriculture: Seasonal Workers, whether the guarantee of a minimum of 32 hours of work every week from 1 April 2023 for people on the seasonal worker visa scheme will mean that workers must be paid for at least 32 hours work each week regardless of their pay period or if the 32 hours per week can be averaged over the worker’s pay period.

A key objective of the route is to ensure that migrant workers are protected against modern slavery and other labour abuses.

The Home Office has made ongoing enhancements to the route over the lifetime of its operation, most recently adding a mandatory minimum hours pay requirement to the Immigration Rules, ensuring that all workers will receive a guaranteed 32 hours of paid employment per week.

Where a worker is paid on a weekly basis, they must receive pay for 32 hours of work. Where workers are paid over a longer period, for example on a fortnightly or monthly basis, some reasonable averaging is permitted. We monitor this closely and workers must not be required to work excessive hours at the end of their pay period in order to achieve the 32 hour average.

27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she is taking steps to help ensure that seasonal migrant workers do not suffer financial losses as a result of participating in the seasonal workers scheme.

A key objective of the route is to ensure that migrant workers are protected against modern slavery and other labour abuses.

The Home Office has made ongoing enhancements to the route over the lifetime of its operation, most recently adding a mandatory minimum hours pay requirement to the Immigration Rules, ensuring that all workers will receive a guaranteed 32 hours of paid employment per week.

20th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has had recent discussions with Interpol on the membership status of Belarus.

The Government has a regular and ongoing dialogue with INTERPOL on a range of matters.

The UK is an active participant in INTERPOL’s Governance Working Group, which discusses all aspects of INTERPOL’s Constitution, including membership.

Tom Tugendhat
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
14th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she plans to provide compensation to seasonal migrant workers for financial losses incurred due to the late issuing of their visa.

There is a formal complaints mechanism that individuals can follow if they feel that their application has not been handled correctly:

Complaints procedure - UK Visas and Immigration - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).

10th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans she has to appoint a new Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner.

The role of the Anti-Slavery Commissioner (IASC) as set out in the 2015 Modern Slavery Act is to encourage good practice in the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of slavery and human trafficking offences and the identification of victims.

The Home Secretary recognises the importance of the role of Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner and has launched a new open competition to recruit for this role.

The advert for the role went live on 23 February 2023 and can be found on the public appointment section on gov.uk with an estimate timeline for the appointment.

The competition will be conducted as quickly as possible, whilst ensuring we take the necessary steps to recruit the best person for the role.

17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what provision has been made for agricultural seasonal worker visa holders to remain working in the UK for the duration of their visa if the scheme operator who recruited them becomes unlicensed for any reason.

The welfare of the people using our visa schemes is always of paramount importance to us, including in the Seasonal Worker scheme. In the event that a scheme operator for the Seasonal Worker routes became unlicensed for any reason, the Home Office will consider each case on its own merits and tailor our response accordingly.

The licensed sponsors for the Seasonal Worker route are listed on Register of Licensed Sponsors: www.gov.uk/government/publications/register-of-licensed-sponsors-workers

The Home Office does not provide commentary on when individual organisations enter onto or leave the Register of Licensed Sponsors.

The selection of Scheme Operators is led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Details of this process can be found at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/seasonal-worker-visa-route-request-for-information-rfi.

17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many potential scheme operators were in place to run the agricultural seasonal worker visa scheme; on what date were the most recent four scheme operators recruited; and when her Department last made an open call for applications for operators to run the scheme.

The welfare of the people using our visa schemes is always of paramount importance to us, including in the Seasonal Worker scheme. In the event that a scheme operator for the Seasonal Worker routes became unlicensed for any reason, the Home Office will consider each case on its own merits and tailor our response accordingly.

The licensed sponsors for the Seasonal Worker route are listed on Register of Licensed Sponsors: www.gov.uk/government/publications/register-of-licensed-sponsors-workers

The Home Office does not provide commentary on when individual organisations enter onto or leave the Register of Licensed Sponsors.

The selection of Scheme Operators is led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Details of this process can be found at: www.gov.uk/government/publications/seasonal-worker-visa-route-request-for-information-rfi.

30th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the short-term visa scheme for poultry workers; and what steps her Department is taking to help prevent workers on that scheme from being in debt bondage.

In November 2021 we introduced a temporary concession enabling poultry workers to be recruited via the Seasonal Worker route, to ensure that there were sufficient workers to cover the surge in poultry production and preparation during the festive season. This received a positive response from the sector and received a good uptake, therefore we included provision for pre-Christmas poultry workers within the main Seasonal Worker route from Autumn 2022.

The Seasonal Worker scheme operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ensuring ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations.

We take the welfare of migrant workers extremely seriously and we are committed to working with DEFRA and the GLAA in order to ensure that workers are not subject to mistreatment, abuse or fall in debt bondage and that their time in the UK is positive and productive.

25th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to the Answer of 23 January 2023 to Question 120891 on Agriculture: Seasonal Workers, how many monitoring visits to seasonal worker visa scheme operators and growers her (a) Department and (b) the Home Office carried out in(i) 2021 and (ii) 2022.

The Home Office does not routinely publish data on monitoring visits to seasonal worker visa scheme operators.

11th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration’s (ICIBI) report entitled An inspection of the immigration system as it relates to the agricultural sector, what assessment she has made of the potential implications for her policies of the comments in that report that (a) front-line Home Office compliance staff confirmed that there was a lack of follow-up, with some explaining that they were very reactive and (b) staff did not know what happened with the reports or whether the issues were reported to more senior officials.

As outlined in our acceptance of ICBI recommendations, the Department intends to form a dedicated team to monitor the operational immigration elements of the scheme. This will include introducing new guidance and training, recruitment of specialist staff, and an enhanced use of intelligence.

The Department will produce a communications and engagement roadmap which will be completed by April 2023.

We will also prepare a document setting out the roles and responsibilities of various Home Office units involved with the Seasonal Worker route. This will be completed by July 2023.

11th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration’s (ICIBI) report entitled An inspection of the immigration system as it relates to the agricultural sector, what assessment she has made of the implications for her policies of the finding which indicated that for the seasonal worker visa schemes fewer than 97 per cent of sponsored workers who had obtained visas left the UK at the end of their permitted stay in 2021.

As per our response in the report, we assessed the data set that the ICIBI were drawing on to be incomplete. Whilst there were indications of an instance of a Sponsor not meeting the 97% metric, there is further work to corroborate this with the Providers themselves. This can be found in paragraph 8.48 of the published report (An inspection of the immigration system as it relates to the agricultural sector May to August 2022 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)).

The assessment of performance metrics of the seasonal worker labour providers is an ongoing rolling process, but where we do find any that have been breached, robust action will be taken against their licence to operate.

6th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether she has received the report from the Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration on its inspection of the immigration system as it relates to the agricultural sector; and when she plans to publish that report.

A final report on inspection of the immigration system as it relates to the agricultural sector has been issued formally by the Independent Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration (ICIBI) to the Secretary of State and will be published as soon as possible.

7th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if the Government will set up a Single Enforcement Body to ensure proactive labour market enforcement of conditions of workers employed in the UK via the agricultural Seasonal Worker visa scheme.

The Home Office is unable to comment on hypothetical scenarios, each individual case will be considered on its own merits and in accordance with the immigration rules and guidance in place at the time.

As the published guidance states Seasonal Workers are permitted to work for more than one employer and it is the responsibility of the scheme operator to match workers with a suitable employer.

The Scheme Operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ensuring ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations, and that workers are fully supported throughout their stay.

The Home Office closely monitors the scheme operators to ensure they are complying with their sponsor duties. Non-compliance with the guidance could result in the revocation of their sponsor license.

Seasonal Workers receive the same protections under UK law as resident workers, including employment laws. Such laws are enforced by the relevant regulator.

The Single Enforcement Body, lead by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is a substantial organisational change and we are making sure all aspects have been considered. The new body requires primary legislation so timing depends on the Parliamentary timetable.

7th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, which Government department is responsible for helping workers on the agricultural Seasonal Worker visa who are in situations which do not meet UK employment law but are not classified as modern slavery.

The Home Office is unable to comment on hypothetical scenarios, each individual case will be considered on its own merits and in accordance with the immigration rules and guidance in place at the time.

As the published guidance states Seasonal Workers are permitted to work for more than one employer and it is the responsibility of the scheme operator to match workers with a suitable employer.

The Scheme Operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ensuring ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations, and that workers are fully supported throughout their stay.

The Home Office closely monitors the scheme operators to ensure they are complying with their sponsor duties. Non-compliance with the guidance could result in the revocation of their sponsor license.

Seasonal Workers receive the same protections under UK law as resident workers, including employment laws. Such laws are enforced by the relevant regulator.

The Single Enforcement Body, lead by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is a substantial organisational change and we are making sure all aspects have been considered. The new body requires primary legislation so timing depends on the Parliamentary timetable.

7th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what help her Department provides for workers who have travelled to the UK on the agricultural Seasonal Worker visa scheme and have their employment ended after a short period.

The Home Office is unable to comment on hypothetical scenarios, each individual case will be considered on its own merits and in accordance with the immigration rules and guidance in place at the time.

As the published guidance states Seasonal Workers are permitted to work for more than one employer and it is the responsibility of the scheme operator to match workers with a suitable employer.

The Scheme Operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ensuring ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations, and that workers are fully supported throughout their stay.

The Home Office closely monitors the scheme operators to ensure they are complying with their sponsor duties. Non-compliance with the guidance could result in the revocation of their sponsor license.

Seasonal Workers receive the same protections under UK law as resident workers, including employment laws. Such laws are enforced by the relevant regulator.

The Single Enforcement Body, lead by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is a substantial organisational change and we are making sure all aspects have been considered. The new body requires primary legislation so timing depends on the Parliamentary timetable.

7th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what help her Department provides for workers who have travelled to the UK on the agricultural Seasonal Worker visa scheme who, following arrival in the UK, are told there is no work available.

The Home Office is unable to comment on hypothetical scenarios, each individual case will be considered on its own merits and in accordance with the immigration rules and guidance in place at the time.

As the published guidance states Seasonal Workers are permitted to work for more than one employer and it is the responsibility of the scheme operator to match workers with a suitable employer.

The Scheme Operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ensuring ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations, and that workers are fully supported throughout their stay.

The Home Office closely monitors the scheme operators to ensure they are complying with their sponsor duties. Non-compliance with the guidance could result in the revocation of their sponsor license.

Seasonal Workers receive the same protections under UK law as resident workers, including employment laws. Such laws are enforced by the relevant regulator.

The Single Enforcement Body, lead by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is a substantial organisational change and we are making sure all aspects have been considered. The new body requires primary legislation so timing depends on the Parliamentary timetable.

7th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether her Department provides any help to find a new sponsor and travel for workers who have applied and been granted entry clearance to the UK on an agricultural Seasonal Worker visa but whose sponsor or Scheme Operator loses their licence before the worker travels to the UK; and whether such workers can claim for payments made for visas and travel.

The Home Office is unable to comment on hypothetical scenarios, each individual case will be considered on its own merits and in accordance with the immigration rules and guidance in place at the time.

As the published guidance states Seasonal Workers are permitted to work for more than one employer and it is the responsibility of the scheme operator to match workers with a suitable employer.

The Scheme Operators are responsible for managing all aspects of the recruitment and placement of workers on UK farms and ensuring their welfare in the UK. This includes ensuring ethical recruitment practices, in line with Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority regulations, and that workers are fully supported throughout their stay.

The Home Office closely monitors the scheme operators to ensure they are complying with their sponsor duties. Non-compliance with the guidance could result in the revocation of their sponsor license.

Seasonal Workers receive the same protections under UK law as resident workers, including employment laws. Such laws are enforced by the relevant regulator.

The Single Enforcement Body, lead by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, is a substantial organisational change and we are making sure all aspects have been considered. The new body requires primary legislation so timing depends on the Parliamentary timetable.

26th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what progress her Department has made on the deportations of members of the Rochdale Grooming Gang; and if she will make a statement.

This Government has always been clear that the crimes committed by the Rochdale child sexual exploitation group, who preyed on the young and vulnerable, have no place in our society.

We are determined to pursue all legal options against these perpetrators, to protect the victims of these appalling crimes and a make our communities safer.

While we understand the public interest in these cases, we do not routinely comment on individual cases. We will continue to keep the victims informed through the proper channels.

14th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how often the Investigatory Powers Commissioner's Office inspects the work of the National Crime Agency; and whether any concerns have arisen during those inspections in the last three years.

IPCO carries out an inspection for each of the different powers utilised by the NCA at least once a year, though some powers are inspected more often. Following each inspection, feedback is provided in a detailed report to the public authority, with issues of note being set out in the Annual Report in the section on Law Enforcement Agencies and the Police.

The annual reports for years up until 2020 can be found on the IPCO website here: Annual Reports – IPCO. The Annual Report for 2021 has not yet been published but is due to be released before the end of the year. IPCO’s Annual Reports are subject to a rigorous cross-government clearance process to ensure no information is included which might be injurious to national security, and as such inspection reports are not released outside of this process.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
14th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the National Crime Agency’s website and media reports, whether the National Crime Agency has taken steps to ensure (a) training of and (b) assistance with the collection of intelligence to Colombian officials does not endanger (i) human rights defenders, (ii) opposition politicians and (iii) journalists in that country, including through (A) potentially unwarranted surveillance and (B) targeted reprisals.

The NCA works with law enforcement partners around the world. In Colombia, the Agency works with the Colombian National Police and the Office of the Attorney General of Colombia. This activity is focused on reducing the threat to the UK from the cocaine trade in Colombia and the region, as well as disrupting the money laundering and other criminal economies linked to drugs trafficking and other organised crime.

When cooperating and sharing intelligence with its international law enforcement partners, the National Crime Agency must comply with the Overseas Security and Justice Assistance guidance, which enables assessments to be made about the human rights and reputational risks of international security and justice work undertaken by the UK. It is also subject to the Principles relating to the detention and interviewing of detainees overseas and the passing and receipt of intelligence relating to detainees.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether the National Crime Agency is able to (a) vet policing personnel to be trained in Colombia and (b) monitor policing personnel already trained in Colombia to ensure they are not responsible for any future serious human rights violations including extra-judicial killings, disappearances and torture.

The NCA works with law enforcement partners around the world. In Colombia, the Agency works with the Colombian National Police and the Office of the Attorney General of Colombia. This activity is focused on reducing the threat to the UK from the cocaine trade in Colombia and the region, as well as disrupting the money laundering and other criminal economies linked to drugs trafficking and other organised crime.

When cooperating and sharing intelligence with its international law enforcement partners, the National Crime Agency must comply with the Overseas Security and Justice Assistance guidance, which enables assessments to be made about the human rights and reputational risks of international security and justice work undertaken by the UK. It is also subject to the Principles relating to the detention and interviewing of detainees overseas and the passing and receipt of intelligence relating to detainees.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how the overseas work of the National Crime Agency is (a) monitored and (b) evaluated in order to assess its effectiveness in combatting drug trafficking and drug use in the UK.

The UK’s drugs strategy, published in December 2021, sets out the role of the NCA in tackling drugs supply and misuse in the UK and overseas.

In June 2022, the government published guidance for local partners in delivering the strategy which included the National Combating Drugs Outcomes Framework. These high-level outcomes will provide a clear focus for national and local accountability. We will monitor the effectiveness the NCA and other partners in delivering the new strategy against progress towards these key outcomes including disruption of criminal groups involved in drugs supply. Central oversight of progress against the strategy is led by the cross-government Joint Combating Drugs Unit.

Additionally, the NCA monitors its effectiveness using a performance outcomes framework, which assures delivery of the wider strategic priorities set by the Home Secretary. NCA performance is reported to parliament and publicly through its Annual Report and Accounts.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what safeguards are in place to ensure that the National Crime Agency’s (a) cooperation and (b) intelligence sharing with officials and bodies in FCDO Human Rights Priority Countries is carried out without (i) violating the UK’s international human rights obligations, (ii) undermining the UK’s policy to oppose the death penalty in all circumstances and (iii) endangering people undertaking lawful activities, including as a result of potentially unwarranted surveillance.

It is vital that the Government’s work on security and justice overseas is in accordance with our obligations under international law, including international human rights law.

When cooperating and sharing intelligence with its international law enforcement partners, the National Crime Agency must comply with the Overseas Security and Justice Assistance guidance, which enables assessments to be made about the human rights and reputational risks of international security and justice work undertaken by the UK.

It is also subject to the Principles relating to the detention and interviewing of detainees overseas and the passing and receipt of intelligence relating to detainees.

Tom Pursglove
Minister of State (Minister for Legal Migration and Delivery)
2nd Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the oral contribution of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department of 22 November 2021, Official Report, column 9, what plans she has to meet the hon. Member for Rochdale.

The Home Secretary has been in contact with MP Tony Lloyd to discuss this important issue and will arrange a meeting when the diary allows.

15th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, further to the meeting between the hon. Member for Torbay, the Minister for Immigration and Future Borders, and the hon. Member for Rochdale on 2 November 2021, what progress he has been made in resolving the constituent's case and other similar cases, reference ASS GWF055081555.

Our aim is to conclude applications for an EEA family permit or an EUSS family permit as soon as possible after identity and supporting documents are submitted. More information can be found here; https://www.gov.uk/guidance/visa-decision-waiting-times-applications-outside-the-uk#if-you-want-to-join-family-in-the-uk

A concession was published within guidance on 1 November 2021 EU Settlement Scheme: family and travel permits - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

The constituent’s case in question was concluded on 18 November 2021.

26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will provide details of the outstanding issues preventing the UK's ratification of the Istanbul Convention; and what steps the Government is taking to bring forward (a) legislative or (b) other proposals to enable the ratification of that convention.

The UK signed the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence (Istanbul Convention) in 2012, signalling our strong commitment to tackling violence against women and girls.

This Government remains committed to ratifying the Convention as soon as possible.

16th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what guidance her Department has published for people who have not yet received the Aspen card.

If a service user is eligible for asylum support and a payment card but has not received their card, they have been advised this should be reported to Migrant Help as per the existing published process and guidance for service user concerns or issues.

Migrant Help will forward the concern onto the relevant operational team to investigate and action a replacement card, if needed, as well as issue an Emergency Cash Payment (ECP) to cover the period until the card arrives and is activated.

Service users can also contact their accommodation provider who have been instructed to reach out to service users known to not have activated their cards. Through these checks, accommodation providers are actively ensuring service users have both received their card and activated accordingly as well as self-authorise ECPs accordingly.

Finally, service users can also reach out to any third sector representatives/voluntary sector partners to escalate an issue on their behalf. Third sector colleagues have a direct escalation route to Home Office teams where they can direct issues (such as the need for replacement cards and issuing ECPs to service users) for Home Office colleagues to investigate and action.

The vast majority of service users have now received their new Aspen card, activated it and have been using it successfully since the service went live on Monday 24th May 2021.

Numbers are fluid as activation numbers continue to increase on a daily basis as well as having new eligible asylum seekers coming into the system over the same period of time.

We are proactively working with partners to ensure any eligible service users receive their new Aspen card and activate it successfully. In the interim, Emergency Cash Payments (ECPs) are being provided to support their critical needs.

16th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what information she holds on the progress on the roll-out of the Aspen card; and what percentage of those planned to receive that card have received it to date.

If a service user is eligible for asylum support and a payment card but has not received their card, they have been advised this should be reported to Migrant Help as per the existing published process and guidance for service user concerns or issues.

Migrant Help will forward the concern onto the relevant operational team to investigate and action a replacement card, if needed, as well as issue an Emergency Cash Payment (ECP) to cover the period until the card arrives and is activated.

Service users can also contact their accommodation provider who have been instructed to reach out to service users known to not have activated their cards. Through these checks, accommodation providers are actively ensuring service users have both received their card and activated accordingly as well as self-authorise ECPs accordingly.

Finally, service users can also reach out to any third sector representatives/voluntary sector partners to escalate an issue on their behalf. Third sector colleagues have a direct escalation route to Home Office teams where they can direct issues (such as the need for replacement cards and issuing ECPs to service users) for Home Office colleagues to investigate and action.

The vast majority of service users have now received their new Aspen card, activated it and have been using it successfully since the service went live on Monday 24th May 2021.

Numbers are fluid as activation numbers continue to increase on a daily basis as well as having new eligible asylum seekers coming into the system over the same period of time.

We are proactively working with partners to ensure any eligible service users receive their new Aspen card and activate it successfully. In the interim, Emergency Cash Payments (ECPs) are being provided to support their critical needs.

8th Feb 2021
What steps she is taking to tackle the grooming of children and young people.

On the 22 January, the Government published the Tackling Child Sexual Abuse Strategy, which sets out a system-wide response to all forms of child sexual abuse.

The strategy details the government’s work to tackle child grooming, including supporting local prevention initiatives, piloting innovative approaches to law enforcement, and work to improve data on the characteristics of offending.

Victoria Atkins
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
28th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she plans to reply to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale of 11 November 2020, on the deportations of members of the Rochdale Grooming Gang.

I apologise for the delay. The Minister for Immigration Compliance and the Courts will respond shortly.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
17th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if he will take urgent steps to deport non-UK nationals who have completed custodial sentences for the grooming of young people in Rochdale.

I am aware of the cases referred to, but I am unable to comment on individual cases.


The crimes committed by child sexual exploitation gangs who prey on the young and vulnerable are appalling. I have every sympathy with their victims. Once we are in a position to do so, we will also be in contact with the victims to provide them with an update.


This Government puts the rights of the British public before those of criminals, and we are clear that foreign criminals should be deported from the UK wherever it is legal and practical to do so.

9th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, by what date she plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale dated 22 March 2018 on Yarl's Wood Immigration Removal Centre reference number IW/0043.

I apologise for the delay in responding to the Honourable Member. A response has been sent to the Honourable Member (May 2018).

9th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, by what date he plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale dated 22 March 2018 on the Immigration Health Surcharge, reference number IW/0045.

I responded to the hon. Member’s correspondence on 10 May 2018.

16th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans she has to restore normal mobile connectivity in Yarl's Wood Immigration Removal Centre.

Flooding at the site of a mobile telephone mast close to Yarl’s Wood immigration removal centre has resulted in intermittent mobile telephone signals affecting three mobile phone network providers. Repairs are underway and normal service is expected to resume shortly.

In the meantime, arrangements are in place at the centre to ensure that any detainee whose mobile phone service is affected can continue to make landline telephone calls and access other means of communication.

Detention Services Order 08/2012 sets out the Home Office’s policy on detainees’ possession of mobile phones in immigration removal centres. Detainees are able to retain their own mobile telephones throughout their detention, provided their handset has no recording facility and/or access to the internet. Where a detainee’s handset does not comply with these restrictions they are provided with a suitable handset by the immigration removal centre supplier so that they may maintain contact with friends, family and other means of support.

24th May 2021
What discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on improving the transition of armed forces personnel into employment.

Improving and recognising the employability of our Service leavers is a personal priority. All personnel have access to the Career Transition Partnership for two years before and after discharge - over 84% of Service leavers find employment within six months. But we go further, working across Government, we have launched an interview scheme and a national insurance holiday for employers. I will shortly be writing to cross-Government colleagues to continue this work throughout 2021 and beyond.

Leo Docherty
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
2nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the Government's policy is on endorsing an international Political Declaration to avoid the use of explosive weapons in populated areas.

The final version of the Political Declaration has not yet been published.

James Heappey
Minister of State (Ministry of Defence) (Minister for the Armed Forces)
21st Sep 2020
When the Government plans to publish the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy.

The Integrated Review will remain closely aligned with the 2020 Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR), to ensure that ambition, capabilities and budgets can be closely coordinated.

Both will publish later in the year. At its heart the Integrated Review is about developing the capabilities we need to meet the threats we face.

25th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department plans to deploy troops to Northern Ireland in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

The UK armed forces already have a presence in Northern Ireland through 38 Brigade who are stationed at Thiepval Barracks, Lisburn. There are no plans to deploy elements of 38 Brigade or any additional troops in Northern Ireland to manage the impacts of a no-deal EU exit. The MOD continues to engage with partners across government, including the Northern Ireland Office and the National Police Chiefs Council, to ensure that Defence is prepared to support the civilian authorities in a range of scenarios.

16th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, by what date he plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Rochdale dated 26 February 2018 on songbirds in Cyprus, reference number IW/0029.

I responded to the hon. Member on 16 April 2018.

I apologise for the delay in responding to the hon. Member; this was due to an administrative error.

13th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what progress his Department has made on the current round of the Community Ownership Fund; and when he plans to announce the successful applications.

The £150 million Community Ownership Fund helps communities across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to take ownership of assets at risk of closure.

Announcements will be made in the usual way.

Jacob Young
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
21st Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what recent progress his Department has made on meeting the national levelling up missions.

The levelling up missions are central to the government’s plan to tackle inequality across the UK. While these are long-term objectives for 2030, we are making early progress through rolling out gigabit broadband, introducing education investment areas, opening freeports, and devolving powers from Westminster.

The Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill sets out proposals for an annual report on levelling up missions as set out in the Levelling Up White Paper.

15th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of controls for light pollution within the planning system; and what steps his Department is taking to help ensure that planning rules on light pollution are being followed.

Planning guidance is just one of the ways that we seek to manage light pollution impacts and most types of lighting will fall outside of the control of the planning system. Local planning authorities must take the National Planning Policy Framework into account when preparing their plans; and its policies - including those on light pollution - also need to be taken into account in making individual planning decisions.

We have given local planning authorities a wide range of enforcement powers, with strong penalties for non-compliance, to deal with development which has not been carried out in accordance with the planning permission granted. It is for authorities to decide when and how they use those powers depending on the circumstances of each case.

Beyond the limits of planning guidance, the statutory nuisance regime provides individuals with recourse to their local authority where artificial light constitutes a nuisance.

DEFRA coordinates policy relating to light pollution across Government and undertook a review of light pollution policy in January 2014, titled Artificial light in the environment: policy update.

Marcus Jones
Treasurer of HM Household (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Commons)
4th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, how much and what proportion of funding for brownfield restitution has been (a) identified for and (b) allocated to each (i) local authority and (ii) region.

The £1.8 billion funding announced at Spending Review will help to regenerate communities and level up the country. This includes £1.5 billion to regenerate underused land and deliver transport links and community facilities, and £300 million locally led grant funding to unlock smaller brownfield sites for housing, regenerating and improving communities. Further details on how to access the funding will be provided as soon as possible


This is on top the of £400 million Brownfield Housing Fund, which will help unlock 26,000 homes by bringing under-utilised brownfield land back into use and. The fund was allocated as follows:

Mayoral Combined Authority Allocation
Greater Manchester £96,999,805
Liverpool City Region £44,643,420
North of Tyne £23,853,618
South Yorkshire £40,340,322
Tees Valley £19,352,315
West Midlands  £108,031,802
West Yorkshire £66,778,719
Total  £400,000,001*

*Total of £400,000,001 is due to rounding.

And also our Brownfield Land Release Fund, which has so far allocated the following: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/thousands-of-new-homes-to-be-built-and-derelict-land-transformed

20th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what steps he is planning to take to ensure the provision of safe shelter for homeless people facing both the cold and covid-19 over winter 2021-22.

The Government has committed over £750 million this year to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping.

This includes over £202 million across England for the Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI), which is more than an 80% increase from the £112 million provided last year. The funding will provide up to 14,500 bed spaces and 2,700 support staff. Within this year's RSI, local authorities were asked to plan for winter and any other surge capacity throughout the year.

We recognise that winter brings with it extra pressures especially with the on-going risk of COVID-19. For this reason, we are we are supporting the voluntary and community sector with the £3.8 million Homelessness Winter Transformation Fund. This funding will help provide safe accommodation that creates a sustained route of the streets by supporting investment in improved accommodation and of self-contained bed spaces over winter 21/22.

Night Shelters that are considering opening this winter should consult their local authorities and consider the COVID-19: provision of night shelters guidance on gov.uk, which was drafted with advice from the UK Health Security Agency (formerly Public Health England).

20th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, what plans the Government has to build high quality and environmentally friendly affordable homes.

This Government is committed to increasing the supply of quality affordable housing and through the Affordable Homes Programme we are investing over £12 billion, including our new £11.5 billion Affordable Homes Programme.

These new homes will need to align with the ‘Future Home Standard’ from 2025, to ensure they produce at least 75% fewer CO2 emissions than those built to current standards. This represents a considerable improvement in energy efficiency standards for new homes.

6th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, with reference to the oral contribution of the Housing Minister on 21 February 2019, Official Report, col 648WH, if he will place in the Library a copy of the letter from the Housing Minister to the hon. Member for Oldham West and Royton on housing targets.

I will deposit a copy of the letter in the Library of the House.

24th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what estimate his Department has made of the number of (a) suicides and (b) attempted suicides that have taken place in prisons in (i) 2019, (ii) 2020, (iii) 2021 and (iv) 2022.

The data on self-inflicted deaths is recorded in our published Safety in Custody Statistics.

The number and rates of self-inflicted deaths across the estate in the 12 months to March 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023 is published in the Safety in Custody Summary table which can be found here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1153227/Safety-in-custody-summary-q4-2022-final-tables.xlsx.

We do not produce official statistics on suicides. Self-inflicted deaths are any death of a person who has apparently taken his or her own life irrespective of intent. This not only includes suicides but also accidental deaths as a result of the person’s own actions. This classification is used because it is not always known whether a person intended to take their own life.

We are unable to answer the question on attempted suicide as we do not record this data.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
26th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will make an estimate of the number and proportion of applications for grant of probate that were resolved within the eight week target in the latest period for which data is available; and how many and what proportion of these applications took more than nine months to resolve.

The attached table shows the number and proportion of Grants of Probate applications resolved in 8 weeks and those that took more than 9 months.

Cases can take longer than 8 weeks for a number of reasons including HMCTS stopping a case to request further information which the user has not supplied, time taken for users to reply, cases can also be stopped due to application being made by another interested party or because the application becomes contested.

Mike Freer
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice)
20th Jan 2021
What progress he has made on bringing forward legislative proposals on dealing with legacy issues in Northern Ireland.

This Government has been clear that it will bring forward legislation to address the legacy of the Troubles that focuses on reconciliation, delivers for victims, and ends the cycle of investigations that is not working for anyone.

While the challenges presented by the pandemic have affected progress, work on this - including engagement with key stakeholders - continues to take place, and we remain committed to moving forward as quickly as possible.

24th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, with reference to the Prime Minister's oral contribution of 15 January 2020, Official Report, column 1020, what the Government's definition is of vexatious prosecutions; and how legislative proposals will prevent vexatious or unfair prosecutions of veterans who served in Northern Ireland.

The Government is committed to reforming the current legacy system in Northern Ireland in a way which provides reconciliation for victims and greater certainty for veterans. Nobody who has served in our armed forces should be subject to unfair prosecution in cases where no new evidence has been provided.

26th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, on what date the next British Irish Intergovernmental Conference is scheduled to take place.

I refer the honourable Member to the answer I gave on 26 March 2019 (UIN 235262). At the last meeting of the British-Irish Intergovernmental Conference in November 2018, the UK and Irish Governments agreed to hold another meeting in the spring of 2019.

26th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, when she plans to lay before the House the relevant measures to extend the period under which the duty to call an Assembly election is removed as outlined in the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation and Exercise of Functions) Act 2018.

I laid the statutory instrument that extended the period for Executive formation on 21 March. It came into force on 25 March and, as a made affirmative instrument, it will be subject to a debate and vote in Parliament in due course.

25th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, if she will publish who (a) she and (b) Ministers of her Department have met in meetings and engagements over the last 14 months; and if she will also publish on what dates those meetings were held.

The Government is committed to publishing details of ministers’ meetings with external organisations on a quarterly basis. Publications for the Northern Ireland Office can be found on Gov.UK.

28th Mar 2023
To ask the Leader of the House, what the Government's policy is on replies to hon. Members' correspondence being made in the name of civil servants rather than be signed by a Minister.

As set out in the Cabinet Office Guide to Handling Correspondence (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/handling-government-correspondence-guidance) all correspondence to Ministers from MPs should be signed off at an appropriate ministerial level. Official replies to letters from MPs should only occur where the correspondent has written about the day-to-day operations of an executive agency or a non-departmental public body, in which case the relevant Chief Executive may be asked to reply, or where a Minister determines that the particular circumstances mean an official reply would be more appropriate.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
3rd Feb 2021
What steps the Government is taking to support the manufacturing industry in Wales.

We have provided over 2.7 billion pounds in direct support to businesses in Wales, and our Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution will mobilise 12 billion pounds of government investment to stimulate manufacturing across the UK. We have also extended the 1 million pounds annual investment allowance to stimulate investment in UK manufacturing.

David T C Davies
Secretary of State for Wales
14th Mar 2018
What recent discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the effect on Wales of the UK leaving the EU Customs Union and single market.

I have regular discussions with Cabinet colleagues about the opportunities leaving the Customs Union and the EU single market offers to Wales.

Welsh business have already begun to seize these opportunities, as shown by the fact that their exports to non-EU countries grew faster than exports to the EU last year.