Written statements

Government Ministers and a small number of other Members of the two Houses can make a written statement to one or both Houses.

Written statements are published below shortly after receipt in Parliament. They also reproduced in the next edition of the Daily Report and of Hansard in the relevant House.

Written statements made before 17 November 2014 were published only in Hansard:

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WS
Ministry of Defence
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Mr Tobias Ellwood (Under Secretary of State for Defence)
Commons

The Air Cadet Aerospace Offer

A review of gliding and developments within the Royal Air Force (RAF) Air Cadets suggests that a revised Air Cadet Aerospace Offer is overdue. The RAF Air Cadets, in 2017 and beyond, are offering more comprehensive training opportunities to complement cadet gliding and flying that, in light of the broader use of digital technologies, ensure the Air Cadet Offer is looking to the future.

The RAF Air Cadets continue to offer a wide range of excellent activities and opportunities to young people to broaden their experience, improve their confidence and equip them with the skills to succeed, both professionally and personally. Previously, the AIR in Air Cadet has largely been associated with gliding, flying scholarship and air experience activity. In 2017 – and as we look to the future – this places insufficient recognition on broader aviation activities offered alongside flying, with cadets being trained in a number of associated aerospace subjects, which offer the possibility of achieving recognised qualifications or contributing to a CV. In line with wider RAF transformation, we are also considering further cadet learning in emerging areas and technologies such as:

  • Remote-piloting;
  • Space – with potential linkages to the National Space Centre; and
  • Through links to the RAF 100 legacy ‘Trenchard Group’, which seeks to transform our training and education offer: airspace control, artificial intelligence and augmented reality.

We are modernising to provide wider aerospace and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) experience and qualifications that benefit both cadets and industry in emerging aerospace technology areas. Furthermore there is industry interest in providing aerospace experience shown through linkages with cadets at the Royal International Air Tattoo and Syerston Aerospace camps.

The current generation of cadets and volunteer staff view this positively. It follows that gliding will, in future, be just one part of a useful array of qualifications and experience available to cadets in the aerospace field.

To broaden cadets’ perspectives, a National Aerospace Camp took place in August 2017, following the success of the two previous camps in 2015 and 2016. This brought together over 200 cadets from every corner of the United Kingdom to provide a tailored training programme, focusing on aerospace, aviation, engineering and flying. Alongside many visits to specialist and unique MOD, RAF and aviation establishments; cadets were involved in training in remote-control helicopter flying, radio, synthetic simulator training and air traffic control.

The RAF Air Cadets are in collaboration with the Aviation Skills Partnership, to provide pathways into the aerospace sector. A national hub will be created for the RAF Air Cadets and their adult volunteers, as part of the RAF100 legacy, to engage with modern learning, upskilling, accreditation and development through aerospace subjects. The Aaron Aerospace Academy will be built at RAF Syerston and is intended to form part of a national network of aerospace academies, in the coming years, with state of the art facilities.

Throughout the financial year 2016/17 a total of 17,600 cadets had powered flying experiences in the Grob Tutor, with additional opportunities expected as part of a new Air Experience Flight based in Northern Ireland. A further 2,000 have flown in front-line aircraft during training sorties. Tutor flying is now better integrated as part of the wider training programme as, since the gliding relaunch, the utilisation of Part Task Trainer (PTT) simulators has been realigned, with simulated gliding training a pre-cursor to both gliding and Tutor powered flying qualifications. Each Volunteer Gliding School (VGS) now incorporates at least one PTT and, in addition, five Aerospace Ground Schools equipped with PTTs have been established in locations where full VGS’ were previously closed.

Glider recovery rates are now steady and predictable, allowing a total of nearly 3,000 glider sorties to be conducted since recovery of the fleet began. 22 Viking gliders have been recovered so far and gliders have been assigned to Syerston, Little Rissington, Upavon and Tern Hill. Current plans are that up to 15 Vigilant gliders will be delivered, of which six have been recovered so far, with two having been assigned to Topcliffe and the remainder operating at Syerston. These VGS units are now starting to offer wings courses, as they did prior to the pause in flying. More VGS will be regenerated in the coming months.

The review identified that a smaller fleet can be effectively used to potentially improve availability and extend the service life of the gliders. Accordingly, the recovery plans, focusing on contractor capacity and value for money, will now deliver up to 60 Viking gliders, rather than the 73 previously anticipated. As such the revised numbers will deliver the required output – that of giving Air Cadets the opportunity of gaining gliding experience as part of the wider aerospace offer – and will not impact the number of VGS squadrons agreed in March 2016, or the size of the Volunteer Instructor cadre required to support it.

A modern Air Cadet Aerospace Offer should focus on achieving an appropriate balance of gliding, flying, simulation, STEM and front line air experience, making best use of the assets that the RAF have to offer, whilst also looking to the future. The RAF remains extremely grateful for the hard work, time and energy of the volunteers that support the Air Cadets in driving forward this transformation of the Air Cadet Aerospace Offer.

WS
Ministry of Defence
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Earl Howe (Ministter of State, Ministry of Defence)
Lords

Single Source Procurement Legislation: Review

My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence (The Rt Hon Gavin Williamson) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

Section 37 of the Defence Reform Act (2014) requires me to carry out a review of the single source procurement legislation (the DRA and the Single Source Contract Regulations 2014) within three years of it coming into force on 18 December 2014. In meeting this obligation, I would like to express my appreciation for the work and support provided by the Single Source Regulations Office (SSRO) which undertook an extensive consultation process with stakeholders from mid-2016 onwards. I have had regard to the recommendations on changes to the legislation provided by the SSRO in June 2017.

Following further engagement with the SSRO and industry, my review of the legislation has now been completed. It identified a number of areas where changes to the legislation could improve the operation of the regime. Further work will now be needed on the detail of how these could be implemented. In particular, we will need to assure ourselves that the changes result in the intended benefits without imposing unnecessary additional burdens on the Ministry of Defence or suppliers, and that the benefits justify the use of Parliament’s time. I will make a further statement on this in early 2018.

WS
Ministry of Defence
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Earl Howe (Minister of State, Ministry of Defence)
Lords

The Air Cadet Aerospace Offer

My right hon. Friend the Minister for Defence People and Veterans (Mr Tobias Ellwood) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

A review of gliding and developments within the Royal Air Force (RAF) Air Cadets suggests that a revised Air Cadet Aerospace Offer is overdue. The RAF Air Cadets, in 2017 and beyond, are offering more comprehensive training opportunities to complement cadet gliding and flying that, in light of the broader use of digital technologies, ensure the Air Cadet Offer is looking to the future.

The RAF Air Cadets continue to offer a wide range of excellent activities and opportunities to young people to broaden their experience, improve their confidence and equip them with the skills to succeed, both professionally and personally. Previously, the AIR in Air Cadet has largely been associated with gliding, flying scholarship and air experience activity. In 2017 – and as we look to the future – this places insufficient recognition on broader aviation activities offered alongside flying, with cadets being trained in a number of associated aerospace subjects, which offer the possibility of achieving recognised qualifications or contributing to a CV. In line with wider RAF transformation, we are also considering further cadet learning in emerging areas and technologies such as:

  • Remote-piloting;
  • Space – with potential linkages to the National Space Centre; and
  • Through links to the RAF 100 legacy ‘Trenchard Group’, which seeks to transform our training and education offer: airspace control, artificial intelligence and augmented reality.

We are modernising to provide wider aerospace and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) experience and qualifications that benefit both cadets and industry in emerging aerospace technology areas. Furthermore there is industry interest in providing aerospace experience shown through linkages with cadets at the Royal International Air Tattoo and Syerston Aerospace camps.

The current generation of cadets and volunteer staff view this positively. It follows that gliding will, in future, be just one part of a useful array of qualifications and experience available to cadets in the aerospace field.

To broaden cadets’ perspectives, a National Aerospace Camp took place in August 2017, following the success of the two previous camps in 2015 and 2016. This brought together over 200 cadets from every corner of the United Kingdom to provide a tailored training programme, focusing on aerospace, aviation, engineering and flying. Alongside many visits to specialist and unique MOD, RAF and aviation establishments; cadets were involved in training in remote-control helicopter flying, radio, synthetic simulator training and air traffic control.

The RAF Air Cadets are in collaboration with the Aviation Skills Partnership, to provide pathways into the aerospace sector. A national hub will be created for the RAF Air Cadets and their adult volunteers, as part of the RAF100 legacy, to engage with modern learning, upskilling, accreditation and development through aerospace subjects. The Aaron Aerospace Academy will be built at RAF Syerston and is intended to form part of a national network of aerospace academies, in the coming years, with state of the art facilities.

Throughout the financial year 2016/17 a total of 17,600 cadets had powered flying experiences in the Grob Tutor, with additional opportunities expected as part of a new Air Experience Flight based in Northern Ireland. A further 2,000 have flown in front-line aircraft during training sorties. Tutor flying is now better integrated as part of the wider training programme as, since the gliding relaunch, the utilisation of Part Task Trainer (PTT) simulators has been realigned, with simulated gliding training a pre-cursor to both gliding and Tutor powered flying qualifications. Each Volunteer Gliding School (VGS) now incorporates at least one PTT and, in addition, five Aerospace Ground Schools equipped with PTTs have been established in locations where full VGS’ were previously closed.

Glider recovery rates are now steady and predictable, allowing a total of nearly 3,000 glider sorties to be conducted since recovery of the fleet began. 22 Viking gliders have been recovered so far and gliders have been assigned to Syerston, Little Rissington, Upavon and Tern Hill. Current plans are that up to 15 Vigilant gliders will be delivered, of which six have been recovered so far, with two having been assigned to Topcliffe and the remainder operating at Syerston. These VGS units are now starting to offer wings courses, as they did prior to the pause in flying. More VGS will be regenerated in the coming months.

The review identified that a smaller fleet can be effectively used to potentially improve availability and extend the service life of the gliders. Accordingly, the recovery plans, focusing on contractor capacity and value for money, will now deliver up to 60 Viking gliders, rather than the 73 previously anticipated. As such the revised numbers will deliver the required output – that of giving Air Cadets the opportunity of gaining gliding experience as part of the wider aerospace offer – and will not impact the number of VGS squadrons agreed in March 2016, or the size of the Volunteer Instructor cadre required to support it.

A modern Air Cadet Aerospace Offer should focus on achieving an appropriate balance of gliding, flying, simulation, STEM and front line air experience, making best use of the assets that the RAF have to offer, whilst also looking to the future. The RAF remains extremely grateful for the hard work, time and energy of the volunteers that support the Air Cadets in driving forward this transformation of the Air Cadet Aerospace Offer.

WS
Attorney General
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Lord Keen of Elie (HM Advocate General for Scotland )
Lords

Protection for victims of sexual offences in court

The Government is committed to ensuring that victims are supported throughout the criminal justice system. This is particularly so for victims of sexual violence: a devastating and traumatic crime.

Sections 41 to 43 of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 Act came into force in 2000 and provide critical protection for complainants in sex offence cases by tightly restricting the circumstances in which the defence can introduce evidence relating to the complainant’s sexual history.

There is a general prohibition on the use of sexual history evidence by the defence in sex offence trials. There are very limited circumstances in which the law allows such evidence to be introduced, but crucially section 41 prevents the use of sexual history by the defence to discredit the complainant. The defence must make an application to the court to introduce evidence or questions of a complainant’s sexual history, which is then decided upon by the judge in that case.

The Government wants to be sure that the law is working as it should, and strikes the right balance between protecting complainants and ensuring the defendant’s right to a fair trial. That is why we have undertaken a study to look at how the law in this area is working in practice.

Earlier this year, the then Lord Chancellor and I asked the Crown Prosecution Service to undertake an analysis of rape cases finalised in 2016 to determine the frequency and outcome of applications, under section 41.

This study looked at 309 such cases and found that in 92% of them – the overwhelming majority – no evidence of the complainant’s sexual history was introduced by the defence. Additionally, applications to introduce such evidence were only made in 13% of these cases. These findings strongly indicate that the law is working as it should, and strikes a careful balance between the need to protect complainants and ensuring that defendants receive a fair trial, consistent with the common law and Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Whilst this is reassuring, we want to do more to provide vulnerable victims – and the public at large – with complete confidence in our criminal justice system. The Government is committed to ensuring that victims are treated with dignity and fairness in court. We are therefore taking additional steps to ensure the law continues to function effectively. These steps include the launch of new mandatory CPS prosecutor training and updated legal guidance; discussing with representatives of the Bar and solicitors the opportunity to improve training for criminal practitioners on section 41; a review by the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee of their rules in this area; and improved data collection.

Throughout this study we have listened to the views of victims’ groups and stakeholders, and engaged with them on raising awareness of section 41 and ensuring its effective operation. We will continue to engage with them on this issue.

Further details of the study are set out in a report that accompanies this statement. The measures we are taking are in addition to our wider work to support victims and witnesses in sexual offences cases. This wider work includes the roll-out of pre-recorded cross-examination for vulnerable witnesses in sexual offence cases, the introduction of new guidance for Independent Sexual Violence Advisors, and our commitment to publish a victims’ strategy in early 2018. The Government has also committed to publish a draft Domestic Violence and Abuse Bill and provide an additional £20 million to provide support to victims and to organisations combatting domestic abuse.

Copies of the report have been laid before both Houses and the full report is available here: www.gov.uk/government/publications/limiting-the-use-of-complainants-sexual-history-in-sexual-offence-cases

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS349
WS
Attorney General
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Jeremy Wright (Attorney General)
Commons

Protection for victims of sexual offences in court

The Government is committed to ensuring that victims are supported throughout the criminal justice system. This is particularly so for victims of sexual violence: a devastating and traumatic crime.

Sections 41 to 43 of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 Act came into force in 2000 and provide critical protection for complainants in sex offence cases by tightly restricting the circumstances in which the defence can introduce evidence relating to the complainant’s sexual history.

There is a general prohibition on the use of sexual history evidence by the defence in sex offence trials. There are very limited circumstances in which the law allows such evidence to be introduced, but crucially section 41 prevents the use of sexual history by the defence to discredit the complainant. The defence must make an application to the court to introduce evidence or questions of a complainant’s sexual history, which is then decided upon by the judge in that case.

The Government wants to be sure that the law is working as it should, and strikes the right balance between protecting complainants and ensuring the defendant’s right to a fair trial. That is why we have undertaken a study to look at how the law in this area is working in practice.

Earlier this year, the then Lord Chancellor and I asked the Crown Prosecution Service to undertake an analysis of rape cases finalised in 2016 to determine the frequency and outcome of applications, under section 41.

This study looked at 309 such cases and found that in 92% of them – the overwhelming majority – no evidence of the complainant’s sexual history was introduced by the defence. Additionally, applications to introduce such evidence were only made in 13% of these cases. These findings strongly indicate that the law is working as it should, and strikes a careful balance between the need to protect complainants and ensuring that defendants receive a fair trial, consistent with the common law and Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Whilst this is reassuring, we want to do more to provide vulnerable victims – and the public at large – with complete confidence in our criminal justice system. The Government is committed to ensuring that victims are treated with dignity and fairness in court. We are therefore taking additional steps to ensure the law continues to function effectively. These steps include the launch of new mandatory CPS prosecutor training and updated legal guidance; discussing with representatives of the Bar and solicitors the opportunity to improve training for criminal practitioners on section 41; a review by the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee of their rules in this area; and improved data collection.

Throughout this study we have listened to the views of victims’ groups and stakeholders, and engaged with them on raising awareness of section 41 and ensuring its effective operation. We will continue to engage with them on this issue.

Further details of the study are set out in a report that accompanies this statement. The measures we are taking are in addition to our wider work to support victims and witnesses in sexual offences cases. This wider work includes the roll-out of pre-recorded cross-examination for vulnerable witnesses in sexual offence cases, the introduction of new guidance for Independent Sexual Violence Advisors, and our commitment to publish a victims’ strategy in early 2018. The Government has also committed to publish a draft Domestic Violence and Abuse Bill and provide an additional £20 million to provide support to victims and to organisations combatting domestic abuse.

Copies of the report have been laid before both Houses and the full report is available here: www.gov.uk/government/publications/limiting-the-use-of-complainants-sexual-history-in-sexual-offence-cases

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS343
WS
Ministry of Defence
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Earl Howe (Minister of State, Ministry of Defence)
Lords

Grant-in-Kind of Equipment to the Jordanian Armed Forces

My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence (The Rt Hon Gavin Williamson) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

I have today laid before the House a Departmental Minute describing a package of equipment that the UK intends to provide to the Jordanian Armed Forces. The value of the package is estimated at £2,562,500.

The provision of equipment will be treated as a grant-in-kind. Following correspondence from the Chair of the Public Accounts Committee in 2016, Departments which previously treated these payments as gifts have undertaken to notify the House of Commons of any such grant-in-kind of a value exceeding £300,000 and explaining the circumstances; and to refrain from making the grant until fourteen parliamentary sitting days after the issue of the minute, except in cases of special urgency.

The grant-in-kind in this case comprises vehicles, furniture and IT equipment, generators and a range of personal-issue items. The granting of this equipment will support the Jordanian Defence & Borders Programme and is fundamental to the aims of the Government Strategy for Jordan. Delivery of targeted areas of equipment support is an integral part of the approach in order to assist Jordan in developing the capability to protect its borders. The activity is in support of the National Security Council objectives and is funded through the Conflict, Security and Stability Fund administered by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for International Development and the Ministry of Defence.

Subject to completion of the Departmental Minute process, the equipment is expected to be delivered in early 2018.

WS
Ministry of Defence
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Gavin Williamson (Secretary of State for Defence)
Commons

Grant-in-Kind of Equipment to the Jordanian Armed Forces

I have today laid before the House a Departmental Minute describing a package of equipment that the UK intends to provide to the Jordanian Armed Forces. The value of the package is estimated at £2,562,500.

The provision of equipment will be treated as a grant-in-kind. Following correspondence from the Chair of the Public Accounts Committee in 2016, Departments which previously treated these payments as gifts have undertaken to notify the House of Commons of any such grant-in-kind of a value exceeding £300,000 and explaining the circumstances; and to refrain from making the grant until fourteen parliamentary sitting days after the issue of the minute, except in cases of special urgency.

The grant-in-kind in this case comprises vehicles, furniture and IT equipment, generators and a range of personal-issue items. The granting of this equipment will support the Jordanian Defence & Borders Programme and is fundamental to the aims of the Government Strategy for Jordan. Delivery of targeted areas of equipment support is an integral part of the approach in order to assist Jordan in developing the capability to protect its borders. The activity is in support of the National Security Council objectives and is funded through the Conflict, Security and Stability Fund administered by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for International Development and the Ministry of Defence.

Subject to completion of the Departmental Minute process, the equipment is expected to be delivered in early 2018.

WS
Department for Education
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Lord Agnew of Oulton (The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the School System )
Lords

Social Mobility Action Plan: Delivering Equality of Opportunity through Education

My Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Education has made the following statement:

Today, 14 December 2017, I am publishing Unlocking Talent; Fulfilling Potential: A plan for improving social mobility through education.

This is an ambitious plan to put social mobility at the heart of education policy, helping to make Britain fit for the future. It sits alongside the work of other Departments, and brings together a coherent, concerted approach to begin to level up opportunity right across the education system.

Our education reforms are raising standards in schools: compared to 2010 there are now 1.9 million more pupils in good and outstanding schools. Our introduction of a central focus on phonics is transforming literacy rates for young children. There are record numbers of young people in education or training and more disadvantaged young people going to university.

But, in our country today, where you start still all too often determines where you finish. And while talent is spread evenly across the country, opportunity is not. If we are to make this a country which truly works for everyone, there is much more to be done to deliver equality of opportunity for every child, regardless of who they are or where they live.

We are under no illusion that this will be easy. Nor that education can do it alone. But it does play a vital role – equality of opportunity starts with education.

This plan will deliver action targeted towards the people and the places where it is needed most through five key ambitions. Firstly, there is an overarching ambition to provide additional support to parts of the country that need it to ensure no community is “left behind”. Then there are four life stage ambitions:

Ambition 1: Close the word gap in the early years: children with strong foundations start school in a position to progress, but too many children fall behind early. We need to tackle development gaps, especially key early language and literacy skills, including by boosting investment in English hubs and professional development for early years professionals.

Ambition 2: Close the attainment gap in school while continuing to raise standards for all: the attainment gap between disadvantaged children and their more affluent peers is closing. But these pupils still remain behind their peers. We will build on recent reforms, and raise standards in the areas that need it most. This will include more support for teachers early in their careers, providing clear pathways to progression, and getting more great teachers in areas where there remain significant challenges.

Ambition 3: High quality post-16 education choices for all young people: we have more people going to university than ever before, including more disadvantaged young people, but we need to expand access further to the best universities. We are delivering a skills revolution including working with business to make technical education world class, backed by an extra £500 million pounds investment at the March 2017 Budget.

Ambition 4: Everyone achieving their full potential in rewarding careers: employment has grown, but we need to improve access for young people from lower income backgrounds to networks of advice, information and experiences of work through a new type of partnership with businesses and employers. We will also support adults to retrain/upskill.

To achieve these ambitions, we are shifting the way we work. We are focusing on what works: putting evidence and the heart of our approach, embedding and extending successful reforms, and spreading best practice.

We are also shifting focus on building lasting success through partnership: asking employers, education professionals, voluntary groups and many others to step up and join a united effort across the country to put social mobility at the heart of their work too.

Improving opportunity for the next generation of young people is one of the great challenges of our time; everyone must play their part. But the prize is huge: a country in which talent and potential are what matters more. A country where everyone can be at their best.

The plan will be published on the Department for Education’s website and copies will also be placed in the House Libraries.

Unlocking Talent; Fulfilling Potential (PDF Document, 2.63 MB)
This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS347
WS
Department for Communities and Local Government
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government)
Lords

Grenfell Tower fire six months on

My Rt Hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Sajid Javid), has today made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

Today marks six months since the Grenfell Tower tragedy and I am sure I speak for the whole House when I say our thoughts very much remain with those affected.

A national memorial service will take place at St Paul’s Cathedral today to mark this, which the Prime Minister, Ministerial colleagues and I will attend. This will provide the opportunity for us to remember those who tragically lost their lives and I hope offer some comfort to the bereaved and survivors. I am determined those who lost their lives, their families and friends, the survivors and the community will not be forgotten and are supported in getting the help they need and deserve.

On 11 December I wrote to all colleagues with an update on some of the work being undertaken to support those affected and I plan, with Mr Speaker’s permission, to make an Oral Statement to the House before recess.

Above all, I am determined that the lessons of the Grenfell fire are learnt and never forgotten so that a tragedy like this can never, ever happen again.

WS
Department for Education
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Justine Greening (The Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women and Equalities)
Commons

Social Mobility Action Plan: Delivering Equality of Opportunity through Education

Today, 14 December 2017, I am publishing Unlocking Talent; Fulfilling Potential: A plan for improving social mobility through education.

This is an ambitious plan to put social mobility at the heart of education policy, helping to make Britain fit for the future. It sits alongside the work of other Departments, and brings together a coherent, concerted approach to begin to level up opportunity right across the education system.

Our education reforms are raising standards in schools: compared to 2010 there are now 1.9 million more pupils in good and outstanding schools. Our introduction of a central focus on phonics is transforming literacy rates for young children. There are record numbers of young people in education or training and more disadvantaged young people going to university.

But, in our country today, where you start still all too often determines where you finish. And while talent is spread evenly across the country, opportunity is not. If we are to make this a country which truly works for everyone, there is much more to be done to deliver equality of opportunity for every child, regardless of who they are or where they live.

We are under no illusion that this will be easy. Nor that education can do it alone. But it does play a vital role – equality of opportunity starts with education.

This plan will deliver action targeted towards the people and the places where it is needed most through five key ambitions. Firstly, there is an overarching ambition to provide additional support to parts of the country that need it to ensure no community is “left behind”. Then there are four life stage ambitions:

Ambition 1: Close the word gap in the early years: children with strong foundations start school in a position to progress, but too many children fall behind early. We need to tackle development gaps, especially key early language and literacy skills, including by boosting investment in English hubs and professional development for early years professionals.

Ambition 2: Close the attainment gap in school while continuing to raise standards for all: the attainment gap between disadvantaged children and their more affluent peers is closing. But these pupils still remain behind their peers. We will build on recent reforms, and raise standards in the areas that need it most. This will include more support for teachers early in their careers, providing clear pathways to progression, and getting more great teachers in areas where there remain significant challenges.

Ambition 3: High quality post-16 education choices for all young people: we have more people going to university than ever before, including more disadvantaged young people, but we need to expand access further to the best universities. We are delivering a skills revolution including working with business to make technical education world class, backed by an extra £500 million pounds investment at the March 2017 Budget.

Ambition 4: Everyone achieving their full potential in rewarding careers: employment has grown, but we need to improve access for young people from lower income backgrounds to networks of advice, information and experiences of work through a new type of partnership with businesses and employers. We will also support adults to retrain/upskill.

To achieve these ambitions, we are shifting the way we work. We are focusing on what works: putting evidence and the heart of our approach, embedding and extending successful reforms, and spreading best practice.

We are also shifting focus on building lasting success through partnership: asking employers, education professionals, voluntary groups and many others to step up and join a united effort across the country to put social mobility at the heart of their work too.

Improving opportunity for the next generation of young people is one of the great challenges of our time; everyone must play their part. But the prize is huge: a country in which talent and potential are what matters more. A country where everyone can be at their best.

The plan will be published on the Department for Education’s website and copies will also be placed in the House Libraries.

Unlocking Talent; Fulfilling Potential (PDF Document, 2.63 MB)
This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS341
WS
Department for Communities and Local Government
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Sajid Javid (Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government)
Commons

Grenfell Tower fire six months on

Today marks six months since the Grenfell Tower tragedy and I am sure I speak for the whole House when I say our thoughts very much remain with those affected.

A national memorial service will take place at St Paul’s Cathedral today to mark this, which the Prime Minister, Ministerial colleagues and I will attend. This will provide the opportunity for us to remember those who tragically lost their lives and I hope offer some comfort to the bereaved and survivors. I am determined those who lost their lives, their families and friends, the survivors and the community will not be forgotten and are supported in getting the help they need and deserve.

On 11 December I wrote to all colleagues with an update on some of the work being undertaken to support those affected and I plan, with Mr Speaker’s permission, to make an Oral Statement to the House before recess.

Above all, I am determined that the lessons of the Grenfell fire are learnt and never forgotten so that a tragedy like this can never, ever happen again.

WS
Department of Health
Made on: 14 December 2017
Made by: Mr Philip Dunne (Minister of State for Health)
Commons

Draft health and care workforce strategy for England

I wish to update Parliament that on 13th December 2017, Health Education England published the consultation: 'Facing the Facts, Shaping the Future’ a draft health and care workforce strategy for England to 2027.

This draft strategy is for consultation with stakeholders and the public more widely and is the product of the whole national health system, including NHS England, NHS Improvement and Public Health England.

It announces system-wide reviews to assess the impact of technological changes on clinical professionals and on how best to support the informal workforce, made up of family, friends, carers and patients themselves, in the future.

Further information on the consultation and how to participate can be found at:

https://www.hee.nhs.uk/our-work/planning-commissioning/workforce-strategy

I attach a copy of the draft strategy.

WS
Leader of the House of Lords
Made on: 13 December 2017
Made by: Baroness Evans of Bowes Park (Lord Privy Seal)
Lords

Committee on Standards in Public Life - 17th report on intimidation in public life

My Rt Hon. Friend the Prime Minister has made the following statement to the House of Commons:

Today, I welcome the publication of the report by the Committee on Standards in Public Life on their review of the intimidation of Parliamentary Candidates.

I would like to place on record my thanks to the Committee for its thorough consideration of these issues. In July, I asked the Committee to undertake this review into the issue of abuse and intimidation experienced by Parliamentary candidates, including those who stood in the 2017 General Election campaign. The issue was highlighted by those across the political spectrum. Whilst robust debate is fundamental in an open democracy, threats to candidates and property goes well beyond that which should be regarded as acceptable by those in public life, and abuse will not be tolerated.

The Committee has consulted widely and members of both Houses, from across all parties, were invited to contribute. Today’s report addresses the roles of the main actors - in social media, the law, policing and prosecution, and political parties - and proposes a package of recommendations for both immediate and longer-term action. We will be giving full and thorough consideration to its recommendations. The Government plans to issue a response to the review in due course. This House may also wish to debate and consider the Committee’s recommendations.

The Committee’s report provides a body of evidence showing the extent and seriousness of the problem. It considers the risks to freedom of speech, diversity, and debate and to our representative democracy if action is not taken. We need to protect our freedom of speech and the vitality of our political system, and the freedom and diversity of participation in that system, as well as ensuring the integrity of the democratic process

The report finds that intimidation is not a new phenomenon, but its scale and intensity, which has been accelerated by social media, is a serious issue.

It is not just politicians who have experienced unwarranted abuse – it has included journalists and other prominent figures in public life. Everyone deserves to be treated with tolerance and respect, and the British liberties of freedom of speech and freedom of association must always operate within the law. All those in public life need to demonstrate their opposition to intimidation and call it out, and report it when they see it. We must all work together to combat this issue.

Copies of the report have been laid in the Journal Office, the Printed Paper Office and deposited in the Libraries of both Houses.

WS
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Made on: 13 December 2017
Made by: Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (The Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs )
Lords

The ongoing campaign against Daesh

My Right Honourable Friend, the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs (Boris Johnson), has made the following written Ministerial statement:

Daesh no longer hold significant territory in Iraq or Syria. Thanks to the courage and resolve of the Iraqi Security Forces, our partners in Syria and the unwavering support of the 74 member Global Coalition, in which we play a leading role, millions of people have been liberated from Daesh’s control in both Iraq and Syria.

Daesh is failing, but not yet beaten. They continue to pose a threat to Iraq from across the Syrian border and as an insurgent presence. It is also a global terrorist network. Daesh has the ability to plan and inspire terrorist attacks at home and abroad. Therefore, we will act to protect the UK and our allies, as long as necessary.

We must be prepared for Daesh to change its form by returning to its insurgent roots and making ever stronger efforts to lure more adherents to its ideology. So we will continue to tackle Daesh on simultaneous fronts, which includes preventing the return of foreign terrorist fighters to their country of origin, including the UK and Europe. We will continue to degrade Daesh’s poisonous propaganda, decrease their ability to generate revenue and deny them a safe haven online.

It is vital that we also address the underlying causes of Daesh’s rise. To truly defeat Daesh requires long-term work to address the grievances it feeds off.

That is why we will continue to work with and support the Government of Iraq in its efforts to deliver the reforms and reconciliation needed to rebuild public trust in the Iraqi state and unite all Iraqis against extremism, including giving them the security, jobs and opportunities they deserve.

In Syria, Asad created the space for Daesh by releasing extremist prisoners and by causing untold suffering to his people. His brutality is evident in the siege and bombardment of almost 400,000 people in Eastern Ghouta, which is a replication of the Aleppo siege this time last year. We remain committed to securing a political settlement that ends the conflict and brings about a transition away from Asad. To this end, we welcome the agreement in Riyadh of a new Syrian opposition negotiating team and the resumption of UN-mediated peace talks in Geneva this month.

The ranks of the Global Coalition continue to grow as more and more countries answer the call to action against Daesh. We will continue to take whatever steps are necessary to protect the British people and our allies.

WS
Department for Exiting the European Union
Made on: 13 December 2017
Made by: Lord Callanan (Minister of State for Exiting the European Union)
Lords

Procedures for the Approval and Implementation of EU Exit Agreements

My Rt Hon. Friend, David Davis MP, Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, has made the following statement:

The UK will exit the EU on 29 March 2019. We are currently negotiating the terms of our withdrawal (and hope shortly to move on to the terms of our future relationship). This note sets out the role of Parliament in approving the resulting agreements and how they will be brought into force.

Background

There will be at least two agreements.

A Withdrawal Agreement will be negotiated under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) whilst the UK is a member of the EU. It will set out the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU (including an agreement on citizens’ rights, Northern Ireland and any financial settlement), as well as the details of any implementation period agreed between both sides.

Article 50(2) of the TEU sets out that the Withdrawal Agreement should take account of the terms for the departing Member State’s future relationship with the EU. At the same time as we negotiate the Withdrawal Agreement, we will therefore also negotiate the terms for our future relationship.

However as the Prime Minister made clear in her Florence speech, the European Union considers that it is not “legally able to conclude an agreement with the UK as an external partner while it is itself still part of the European Union”. This is because the EU treaties require that the agreement governing our future relationship can only be legally concluded once the UK is a third country (i.e. once it has left the EU). So the Withdrawal Agreement will be followed shortly after we have left by one or more agreements covering different aspects of the future relationship.

How will the Withdrawal Agreement be approved and brought into force?

The Withdrawal Agreement will need to be signed by both parties and concluded by the EU and ratified by the UK before it can enter into force. The UK approval and EU approval processes can operate in parallel.

The EU’s Chief Negotiator, Michel Barnier, has said that he wants to have finalised the Withdrawal Agreement by October 2018. In Europe, the agreement will then require the consent of the European Parliament and final sign off by the Council acting by a qualified majority. It will not require separate approval or ratification by the individual Member States.

In the UK, the Government has committed to hold a vote on the final deal in Parliament as soon as possible after the negotiations have concluded. This vote will take the form of a resolution in both Houses of Parliament and will cover both the Withdrawal Agreement and the terms for our future relationship. The Government will not implement any parts of the Withdrawal Agreement - for example by using Clause 9 of the European Union (Withdrawal) bill - until after this vote has taken place.

In addition to this vote, the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010 (CRAG) normally requires the Government to place a copy of any treaty subject to ratification before both Houses of Parliament for a period of at least 21 sitting days, after which the treaty may be ratified unless there is a resolution against this. If the House of Commons resolves against ratification the Government can lay a statement explaining why it considers the treaty should still be ratified and there is then a further 21 sitting days during which the House of Commons may decide whether to resolve again against ratification. The Government is only able to ratify the agreement if the House of Commons does not resolve against the agreement.

If Parliament supports the resolution to proceed with the Withdrawal Agreement and the terms for our future relationship, the Government will bring forward a Withdrawal Agreement & Implementation Bill to give the Withdrawal Agreement domestic legal effect. The Bill will implement the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement in UK law as well as providing a further opportunity for parliamentary scrutiny. This legislation will be introduced before the UK exits the EU and the substantive provisions will only take effect from the moment of exit. Similarly, we expect any steps taken through secondary legislation to implement any part of the Withdrawal Agreement will only be operational from the moment of exit, though preparatory provisions may be necessary in certain cases.

How will the agreement governing the UK’s future relationship with the EU be approved and brought into force?

As described above, the agreement governing our future relationship with the EU can only be legally concluded once the UK has left the EU. This may take the form of a single agreement or a number of agreements covering different aspects of the relationship.

Whatever their final form, agreements on the future relationship are likely to require the consent of the European Parliament and conclusion by the Council. If both the EU and Member States are exercising their competences in an agreement, Member States will also need to ratify it.

In the UK, the Government will introduce further legislation where it is needed to implement the terms of the future relationship into UK law, providing yet another opportunity for proper parliamentary scrutiny.

The CRAG process is also likely to apply to agreements on our future relationship, depending on the final form they take.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS342
WS
Prime Minister
Made on: 13 December 2017
Made by: Mrs Theresa May (Prime Minister)
Commons

Committee on Standards in Public Life - 17th report on intimidation in public life

Today, I welcome the publication of the report by the Committee on Standards in Public Life on their review of the intimidation of Parliamentary Candidates.

I would like to place on record my thanks to the Committee for its thorough consideration of these issues. In July, I asked the Committee to undertake this review into the issue of abuse and intimidation experienced by Parliamentary candidates, including those who stood in the 2017 General Election campaign. The issue was highlighted by those across the political spectrum. Whilst robust debate is fundamental in an open democracy, threats to candidates and property goes well beyond that which should be regarded as acceptable by those in public life, and abuse will not be tolerated.

The Committee has consulted widely and members of both Houses, from across all parties, were invited to contribute. Today’s report addresses the roles of the main actors – in social media, the law, policing and prosecution, and political parties – and proposes a package of recommendations for both immediate and longer-term action. We will be giving full and thorough consideration to its recommendations. The Government plans to issue a response to the review in due course. This House may also wish to debate and consider the Committee’s recommendations.

The Committee’s report provides a body of evidence showing the extent and seriousness of the problem. It considers the risks to freedom of speech, diversity, and debate and to our representative democracy if action is not taken. We need to protect our freedom of speech and the vitality of our political system, and the freedom and diversity of participation in that system, as well as ensuring the integrity of the democratic process.

The report finds that intimidation is not a new phenomenon, but its scale and intensity, which has been accelerated by social media, is a serious issue.

It is not just politicians who have experienced unwarranted abuse – it has included journalists and other prominent figures in public life. Everyone deserves to be treated with tolerance and respect, and the British liberties of freedom of speech and freedom of association must always operate within the law. All those in public life need to demonstrate their opposition to intimidation and call it out, and report it when they see it. We must all work together to combat this issue.

Copies of the report have been laid in the Journal Office, the Printed Paper Office and deposited in the Libraries of both Houses.

WS
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Made on: 13 December 2017
Made by: Boris Johnson (The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs )
Commons

The ongoing campaign against Daesh

Daesh no longer hold significant territory in Iraq or Syria. Thanks to the courage and resolve of the Iraqi Security Forces, our partners in Syria and the unwavering support of the 74 member Global Coalition, in which we play a leading role, millions of people have been liberated from Daesh’s control in both Iraq and Syria.

Daesh is failing, but not yet beaten. They continue to pose a threat to Iraq from across the Syrian border and as an insurgent presence. It is also a global terrorist network. Daesh has the ability to plan and inspire terrorist attacks at home and abroad. Therefore, we will act to protect the UK and our allies, as long as necessary.

We must be prepared for Daesh to change its form by returning to its insurgent roots and making ever stronger efforts to lure more adherents to its ideology. So we will continue to tackle Daesh on simultaneous fronts, which includes preventing the return of foreign terrorist fighters to their country of origin, including the UK and Europe. We will continue to degrade Daesh’s poisonous propaganda, decrease their ability to generate revenue and deny them a safe haven online.

It is vital that we also address the underlying causes of Daesh’s rise. To truly defeat Daesh requires long-term work to address the grievances it feeds off.

That is why we will continue to work with and support the Government of Iraq in its efforts to deliver the reforms and reconciliation needed to rebuild public trust in the Iraqi state and unite all Iraqis against extremism, including giving them the security, jobs and opportunities they deserve.

In Syria, Asad created the space for Daesh by releasing extremist prisoners and by causing untold suffering to his people. His brutality is evident in the siege and bombardment of almost 400,000 people in Eastern Ghouta, which is a replication of the Aleppo siege this time last year. We remain committed to securing a political settlement that ends the conflict and brings about a transition away from Asad. To this end, we welcome the agreement in Riyadh of a new Syrian opposition negotiating team and the resumption of UN-mediated peace talks in Geneva this month.

The ranks of the Global Coalition continue to grow as more and more countries answer the call to action against Daesh. We will continue to take whatever steps are necessary to protect the British people and our allies.

WS
Department for Exiting the European Union
Made on: 13 December 2017
Made by: Mr David Davis (Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union)
Commons

Procedures for the Approval and Implementation of EU Exit Agreements

The UK will exit the EU on 29 March 2019. We are currently negotiating the terms of our withdrawal (and hope shortly to move on to the terms of our future relationship). This note sets out the role of Parliament in approving the resulting agreements and how they will be brought into force.

Background

There will be at least two agreements.

A Withdrawal Agreement will be negotiated under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) whilst the UK is a member of the EU. It will set out the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU (including an agreement on citizens’ rights, Northern Ireland and any financial settlement), as well as the details of any implementation period agreed between both sides.

Article 50(2) of the TEU sets out that the Withdrawal Agreement should take account of the terms for the departing Member State’s future relationship with the EU. At the same time as we negotiate the Withdrawal Agreement, we will therefore also negotiate the terms for our future relationship.

However as the Prime Minister made clear in her Florence speech, the European Union considers that it is not “legally able to conclude an agreement with the UK as an external partner while it is itself still part of the European Union”. This is because the EU treaties require that the agreement governing our future relationship can only be legally concluded once the UK is a third country (i.e. once it has left the EU). So the Withdrawal Agreement will be followed shortly after we have left by one or more agreements covering different aspects of the future relationship.

How will the Withdrawal Agreement be approved and brought into force?

The Withdrawal Agreement will need to be signed by both parties and concluded by the EU and ratified by the UK before it can enter into force. The UK approval and EU approval processes can operate in parallel.

The EU’s Chief Negotiator, Michel Barnier, has said that he wants to have finalised the Withdrawal Agreement by October 2018. In Europe, the agreement will then require the consent of the European Parliament and final sign off by the Council acting by a qualified majority. It will not require separate approval or ratification by the individual Member States.

In the UK, the Government has committed to hold a vote on the final deal in Parliament as soon as possible after the negotiations have concluded. This vote will take the form of a resolution in both Houses of Parliament and will cover both the Withdrawal Agreement and the terms for our future relationship. The Government will not implement any parts of the Withdrawal Agreement - for example by using Clause 9 of the European Union (Withdrawal) bill - until after this vote has taken place.

In addition to this vote, the Constitutional Reform and Governance Act 2010 (CRAG) normally requires the Government to place a copy of any treaty subject to ratification before both Houses of Parliament for a period of at least 21 sitting days, after which the treaty may be ratified unless there is a resolution against this. If the House of Commons resolves against ratification the Government can lay a statement explaining why it considers the treaty should still be ratified and there is then a further 21 sitting days during which the House of Commons may decide whether to resolve again against ratification. The Government is only able to ratify the agreement if the House of Commons does not resolve against the agreement.

If Parliament supports the resolution to proceed with the Withdrawal Agreement and the terms for our future relationship, the Government will bring forward a Withdrawal Agreement & Implementation Bill to give the Withdrawal Agreement domestic legal effect. The Bill will implement the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement in UK law as well as providing a further opportunity for parliamentary scrutiny. This legislation will be introduced before the UK exits the EU and the substantive provisions will only take effect from the moment of exit. Similarly, we expect any steps taken through secondary legislation to implement any part of the Withdrawal Agreement will only be operational from the moment of exit, though preparatory provisions may be necessary in certain cases.

How will the agreement governing the UK’s future relationship with the EU be approved and brought into force?

As described above, the agreement governing our future relationship with the EU can only be legally concluded once the UK has left the EU. This may take the form of a single agreement or a number of agreements covering different aspects of the relationship.

Whatever their final form, agreements on the future relationship are likely to require the consent of the European Parliament and conclusion by the Council. If both the EU and Member States are exercising their competences in an agreement, Member States will also need to ratify it.

In the UK, the Government will introduce further legislation where it is needed to implement the terms of the future relationship into UK law, providing yet another opportunity for proper parliamentary scrutiny.

The CRAG process is also likely to apply to agreements on our future relationship, depending on the final form they take.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS337
WS
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Made on: 12 December 2017
Made by: Lord Ashton of Hyde (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
Lords

Post-Council Written Ministerial Statement for Telecoms, Transport and Energy Council

My Right Honourable Friend, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (Karen Bradley) has made the following Statement:

The Telecoms, Transport and Energy (TTE) Council took place in Brussels on 4 and 5 December 2017. The UK’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the EU represented the interests of the UK at the Telecoms session of this Council, which took place on 4 December.

Telecoms

The Member States unanimously agreed a General Approach on the proposals laying down the renegotiated regulatory framework for the Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC). This was the only item put forward by the Presidency for which a formal agreement was required. A scrutiny waiver was secured from the European Scrutiny Committee (House of Commons), and the European Union Committee (House of Lords) had cleared this item from scrutiny ahead of the Council.

The main policy debate at the Council centred on the Commission's Initiative on the Free Flow of Data proposal. The Commission’s aim is for this file to be completed by mid-2018, and there was significant support from most member states for work to be expedited, with the expectation that an informal mandate for trilogue discussions could be agreed at Coreper on 20 December.

The Council agreed a 5G Spectrum Roadmap, a non-binding document which sets out milestones for the release of Spectrum necessary for enabling 5G technologies. The UK agreed with the proposed timetable.

The Presidency also provided a progress update on the e-Privacy regulation information on the progress of the European Electronic Communications Code (EECC).

Council conclusions were adopted on the review of the EU Cybersecurity Strategy and draft Council Action Plan for their implementation. The UK supported their adoption.

Other

The Council received information from the Bulgarian delegation, as the incoming presidency for the first half of 2018, setting out their work programme for the next six months. They highlighted a number of priorities for their presidency, aimed primarily at moving the Digital Single Market agenda forward during 2018 including:

  • Proceeding with informal trilogue discussions with the European Parliament on the proposal for EECC;

  • Reaching political agreement on BEREC, advancing the discussions at this Council

  • Continue to to progress both Free Flow of Fata , e-Privacy and Cybersecurity.

The next Council is scheduled for 7-8 June 2018 with Telecoms expected to take place on 8 June.



WS
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Made on: 12 December 2017
Made by: Lord Gardiner of Kimble (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Rural Affairs and Biosecurity)
Lords

Animal Welfare

My Right Hon Friend the Secretary of State (Michael Gove) has today made the following statement.

I am delighted to publish today a draft Animal Welfare (Sentencing and Recognition of Sentience) Bill which will reflect the principle of animal sentience in domestic law and increase maximum sentences for animal cruelty tenfold, from six months to five years in England and Wales.

This draft Bill will embed the principle that animals are sentient beings, capable of feeling pain and pleasure, more clearly than ever before in domestic law. There was never any question that our policies on animal welfare are driven by the fact that animals are sentient beings, and I am keen to reinforce this in legislation as we leave the EU.

The Government is committed to raising animal welfare standards, and to ensuring animals will not lose any recognitions or protections once we leave the EU. The draft Bill I am publishing makes our recognition of animal sentience clear. It contains an obligation, directed towards government, to pay regard to the welfare needs of animals when formulating and implementing government policy.

This provision does not apply to Ministers in the devolved governments of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. I look forward to working closely with my devolved colleagues and I will be exploring with them the best way forward on this important matter, including whether they wish to take a similar or different approach.

In addition we will not tolerate cruelty against animals and we will give the courts the tools they need to deal with abhorrent acts of animal cruelty. This draft Bill increases the maximum penalty for animal welfare offences in the Animal Welfare Act 2006 from six months to five years’ imprisonment.

This applies to the most serious offences under the Act – causing unnecessary suffering, illegally mutilating an animal, illegally docking a dog’s tail, illegal poisoning and encouraging an animal fight. My proposed increased maximum penalties will also apply to convictions relating to attacks on service animals, including guide dogs, police and military dogs. This provision will apply in England and Wales.

The draft Bill that I am publishing today is subject to a seven week consultation, ending on 31st January. It is part of a wider programme to deliver world-leading standards of animal welfare in the years ahead. We are making CCTV mandatory in slaughterhouses, banning plastic microbeads which harm marine life, and have set out proposals for a total ban on ivory sales which contribute to the poaching of elephants. This is the start of our ambition to set a global gold standard for animal welfare as we leave the EU.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS340
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