Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2015-16 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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UIN

Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
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Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 29 November 2016
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Minimum Wage
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, pursuant to the Answer of 16 November 2016 to Question 52385, how many of the 92 employers named by his Department for non-compliance with the national minimum wage on 5 February 2016 identified and paid further arrears, not included in the sum of arrears for which they were named, under the self-correction mechanism introduced by HM Revenue and Customs in 2015; what the combined total was of those further, self-corrected arrears; and to how many workers those further, self-corrected arrears were owed.
A
Answered by: Margot James
Answered on: 07 December 2016

Employers who self-correct arrears owed to workers are not named for any additional arrears identified. Due to the small number of cases involved, publishing aggregate self-correction data could allow individual employers to be identified, and would amount to naming them for a second time.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 02 December 2016
Women and Equalities
Local Government: Equality
Commons
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the report, Acting on equalities: are local authorities in England meeting the duties of the Equality Act 2010 and addressing sexual orientation and gender equality, published by the University of Brighton in October 2016, what steps she is taking to address the finding of that report that in 2016 over half of local authorities in England were failing to demonstrate compliance with the specific public sector duties of the Equality Act 2010 and associated Government Equalities Office Guidance.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 07 December 2016

The Equality and Human Rights Commission is the regulator for the public sector equality duty set out in section 149 of the Equality Act 2010. The Commission uses a range of levers to ensure local authorities and other public bodies comply with the requirements of the duty, from provision of guidance through to enforcement activity where it considers there to be a strategic benefit.

In light of the Brighton University report highlighted by the Honourable Member, the Commission will be writing to the Local Government Association (LGA) drawing its attention to the findings of the research and of the Commission’s evidence of the key equality challenges facing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, and asking the LGA to remind local authorities of their legal obligations under the public sector equality duty.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 01 December 2016
Women and Equalities
Gender Recognition
Commons
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the Government's response to Recommendations 4 to 8 of Women and Equalities Committee Report on Transgender Equality, Cm 9301, if she will set out a timetable for the review of the Gender Recognition Act to determine whether changes can be made to improve it in order to streamline and de-medicalise the gender recognition process; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 06 December 2016

We have committed to a review of the Gender Recognition Act to streamline and demedicalise the gender recognition process, which will include an examination of how alternative gender recognition schemes operate in other countries.

We have begun our programme of work on reviewing the gender recognition process, and we will provide an update on the Government’s progress in 2017.

Grouped Questions: 55808
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 01 December 2016
Women and Equalities
Gender Recognition
Commons
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the Government's response to Recommendations 4 to 8 of the Women and Equalities Committee Report on Transgender Equality, Cm 9301, over what timeframe she plans to monitor the implementation of alternative gender recognition processes in other jurisdictions; which such jurisdictions she plans to monitor; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 06 December 2016

We have committed to a review of the Gender Recognition Act to streamline and demedicalise the gender recognition process, which will include an examination of how alternative gender recognition schemes operate in other countries.

We have begun our programme of work on reviewing the gender recognition process, and we will provide an update on the Government’s progress in 2017.

Grouped Questions: 55809
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 01 December 2016
Women and Equalities
Gender Recognition
Commons
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the Government's response to Recommendation 10 of the Women and Equalities Committee Report on Transgender Equality, Cm 9301, through what mechanisms she plans to listen to and monitor people's experiences of discrimination, harassment or victimisation; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 06 December 2016

The Government regularly engages with transgender organisations to receive feedback and insight into the community. We also listen to testimony and monitor evidence, such as court cases and reports, to improve our understanding and insight.

This is part of our commitment to understand the needs of the transgender community, in order to tackle the discrimination and inequality they face.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 25 November 2016
Department for Work and Pensions
Atos Healthcare: Standards
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if he will make an assessment of whether the premises used by Atos Healthcare to conduct personal independence payment (PIP) assessments at Queensbury House, Brighton (a) complies with relevant equalities legislation, (b) offers sufficient protection of confidentiality to those attending assessments, (c) has toilets accessible on the same floor as assessments take place, (d) has sufficient space for wheelchairs in the waiting area and (e) is a suitable premises for PIP assessments; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Penny Mordaunt
Answered on: 02 December 2016

All premises used by Atos Healthcare in carrying out Personal Independence Payment assessments adhere to Equality Act 2010 guidelines and cover all aspects of the building, from external access to the width of corridors and doorways and the suitability of assessment rooms. Whilst Atos does not own all of the buildings used for assessments, which is the case in Brighton, it ensures that suitable conditions including disabled-access, confidentiality and, suitable toilet facilities are available at all its Assessment Centre locations.

Atos has a duty of care to both staff and claimants to minimise any risk of harm and every effort is made to ensure that assessments are carried out in the safest possible environment.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 24 November 2016
HM Treasury
Railways: South East
Commons
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to publish the London and South Coast Rail Corridor Study; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Mr David Gauke
Answered on: 01 December 2016

The former Chancellor commissioned the London South Coast Rail Corridor Study in 2015, which looks at the region’s rail transport needs broadly. The Study considers the case for investment in the Brighton Main Line, re-opening the Lewes-Uckfield line, as well as the ‘BML2’ concept, for a new mainline to London. The Government will publish the London and South Coast Rail Corridor Study, and its response to the recommendations, in due course.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 24 November 2016
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
India: Bank Notes
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what representations his Department has made to the Indian government on ensuring that demonetised 500 and 1,000 rupee notes can be exchanged in the UK before the end of 2016.
A
Answered by: Alok Sharma
Answered on: 01 December 2016

​I refer the Hon. Lady to the answer I gave in the House to my Hon. Friend the Member for Harrow East (Bob Blackman MP) on 22 November Official Report, Column 750. It is for the Indian Government and the Reserve Bank of India to define what is Indian legal tender. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has updated its travel advice, advising British nationals travelling to India how to act in this matter, and we advise those nationals to monitor the situation closely. The Reserve Bank of India has currency controls in place which limit the amount of rupees (INR25,000) that can be brought into India by overseas residents.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 24 November 2016
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: HIV Infection
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what plans she has to undertake a stocktake review of her Department's work on HIV to assess its comparative performance with other countries (a) in general and (b) on Sustainable Development Goal 3.3.
A
Answered by: James Wharton
Answered on: 01 December 2016

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I provided on 7 November to Question numbers 51481 and 51482.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 24 November 2016
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: HIV Infection
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of its integration of HIV and AIDS prevention programmes into (a) the wider health system and (b) her Department's programmes; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: James Wharton
Answered on: 01 December 2016

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I provided on 28 November to Question number 54484.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
HM Treasury
Carbon Emissions
Commons
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what meetings (a) Ministers and (b) officials of his Department have had with their counterparts in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on the Government's emissions reduction plan since May 2016.
A
Answered by: Jane Ellison
Answered on: 30 November 2016

In line with the practice of successive administrations, details of ministerial discussions are not routinely disclosed. Officials meet regularly with their counterparts in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to discuss a range of policy issues, including the Government’s emissions reduction plan.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department of Health
Neuromuscular Disorders: South East
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that people with muscle-wasting conditions living in (a) Kent, (b) Surrey and (c) Sussex have access to a neuromuscular care advisor close to their home.
A
Answered by: David Mowat
Answered on: 30 November 2016

Since 1 April 2013, NHS England has been responsible for commissioning specialised neurological services, which includes services for patients with neuromuscular disorders. NHS England has published a service specification for neurological care, which sets out what providers must have in place to offer evidence-based, safe and effective services. The specification can be found at:

www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/d04-neurosci-spec-neuro.pdf

NHS England advises that, until summer 2016, a neuromuscular care advisor was in post at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, the main neurosciences centre for the south east, and provided a co-ordinator service to London and the south east of England. Since the post holder left the role, the Trust has been reviewing the post and funding mechanisms. NHS England advises that a number of meetings have taken place and a business case has been developed to take to clinical commissioning groups to agree funding and the service model. The Department is advised that the Sussex Collaborative of National Health Service organisations has confirmed that it is planning to employ a care advisor.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department of Health
Human Papillomavirus: Vaccination
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, when the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation is expected to make a recommendation on the issuing of HPV vaccination for adolescent boys.
A
Answered by: Nicola Blackwood
Answered on: 30 November 2016

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), advises Ministers on immunisation related issues, is currently in the process of considering the impact and cost-effectiveness of extending the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination to adolescent boys.

The JCVI will need to consider mathematical modelling by Public Health England (PHE) on the impact and cost effectiveness of extending the HPV vaccination to adolescent boys, ahead of developing its advice. PHE is expected to report its modelling assessment to the Committee in early 2017.

The JCVI will consider the analysis from PHE at the earliest opportunity. Once the Committee is satisfied it has reviewed all the necessary evidence it will then be expected to make its advice.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department of Health
Human Papillomavirus: Homosexuality
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what proportion of men who have sex with men are estimated to have been infected with the human papilloma virus strains covered by the quadrivalent vaccine at an age prior to the average age of first attendance by men who have sex with men at Genitourinary medicine and HIV clinics.
A
Answered by: Nicola Blackwood
Answered on: 30 November 2016

Human papillomavirus (HPV) testing is not routinely performed hence we have no data on HPV infection at, or prior to, attendance at sexual health clinics.

Public Health England (PHE) has previously reported that the median age of first attendance of men who have sex with men (MSM) at genito-urinary medicine (GUM) clinics in England between 2010 and 2012 was 31 years old. A single-site study of HPV prevalence amongst MSM attending a GUM clinic in central London found a prevalence of HPV16/18/6/11 amongst men aged 18-40 years of 32.5%. Many HPV infections clear naturally. MSM who do not attend GUM clinics may have different prevalence of HPV than MSM who do attend GUM clinics.

PHE has used mathematical modelling to estimate HPV infection rates by age in work to inform the Joint Committee for Vaccination and Immunisation’s (JCVI) advice regarding the vaccination of MSM attending GUM clinics: this work has been described in the relevant JCVI minutes and full modelling details will be published shortly.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department of Health
Human Papillomavirus: Vaccination
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation's assessment of the cost-effectiveness of HPV vaccination for boys includes the (a) social care, (b) social security and (c) other costs of HPV-related diseases that are not borne directly by the NHS; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Nicola Blackwood
Answered on: 30 November 2016

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) follows standard guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence on mathematical modelling and cost-effectiveness. This means that the JCVI takes into account the costs and benefits of a programme from a health perspective to ensure that the best possible health outcomes are delivered from the health, and where relevant, social care budgets.

The JCVI expects to receive a report from Public Health England in early 2017 on the impact and cost effectiveness of extending the human papillomavirus vaccination to adolescent boys. As part of its considerations the JCVI will review whether all appropriate costs and benefits have been taken into account.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department of Health
Human Papillomavirus: Vaccination
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what plans he has to conduct an equality impact assessment of HPV vaccination for boys; and whether any such assessment will take place before or after a recommendation from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation.
A
Answered by: Nicola Blackwood
Answered on: 30 November 2016

The Secretary of State for Health is under the public sector equality duty (PSED) including in relation to policies such as new vaccination programmes. Complying with the PSED requires that there is consideration of equality issues during the decision making process and implementation. The consideration of such equality issues will take place as part of the policy making process concerning human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination for boys.

Grouped Questions: 54209
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department of Health
Human Papillomavirus: Vaccination
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, whether he has requested legal advice on whether HPV vaccination for boys is required under the terms of equality legislation; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Nicola Blackwood
Answered on: 30 November 2016

The Secretary of State for Health is under the public sector equality duty (PSED) including in relation to policies such as new vaccination programmes. Complying with the PSED requires that there is consideration of equality issues during the decision making process and implementation. The consideration of such equality issues will take place as part of the policy making process concerning human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination for boys.

Grouped Questions: 54216
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 November 2016
Department for Transport
Carbon Emissions
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what meetings (a) Ministers and (b) officials of his Department have had with counterparts in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on the Government's emissions reduction plan since May 2016.
A
Answered by: Mr John Hayes
Answered on: 30 November 2016

In line with the practice of successive administrations, details of ministerial discussions are not routinely disclosed. Officials from the Department for Transport meet regularly with their counterparts in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to discuss a range of policy issues, including the Government’s emissions reduction plan.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 25 November 2016
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Heathrow Airport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the letter from the Committee on Climate Change to his Department, of 22 November 2016, if he will make it his policy that final approval of additional capacity at Heathrow Airport is contingent on the UK meeting its carbon budgets in 2050 without international offsets or additional emissions reductions being required in other sectors of the economy.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 30 November 2016

The Government agrees with the Airports Commission’s assessment that a new runway at Heathrow can be delivered within the UK’s carbon obligations. The Government is working on an aviation strategy to replace the 2013 Aviation Policy Framework, and this will include consideration of available policy measures to address the climate change impacts of aviation.

Given the international nature of the aviation sector, the Government is also taking action on this sector at a global level, including working to reach an agreement on the first worldwide scheme to address carbon emissions from aviation through the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 30 November 2016
Northern Ireland Office
Borders: Northern Ireland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, pursuant to the Answer of 16 November 2016 to Question 52620, whether it is the UK's policy to claim jurisdiction of Carlingford Lough up to the high water mark on its County Lough coast after the UK leaves the EU.
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