Lords questions government on LGBT rights and COVID-19 vaccines
9 October 2020
At the start of business each day in the House of Lords, members question government activities and decisions in Lords Questions.
This week, from Monday 12 to Thursday 15 October, members challenge the government on issues including international LGBT rights, protections for renters during the pandemic, pension scams and COVID-19 vaccines.
Baroness Bryan of Partick (Labour) questioned the governments about support for people over the age of 60 who must work because they don’t have access to a pension. Members discussed making care homes COVID-19 secure and the pension injustice to WASPI women.
Lord Black of Brentwood (Conservative) pressed the government about support to enhance, lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans rights internationally. Members discussed topics including countries using COVID-19 to curtail human rights and the rise in discrimination against sexual minorities in Poland.
Baroness Anelay of St Johns (Conservative) asked the government about proposals in the paper 'UK Approach to Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict'. Members discussed topics including support for victims of conflict-related sexual violence and holding to account those who use explosive weapons in populated areas.
Lord Leigh of Hurley (Conservative) pressed the government on protecting third party sellers from the dominance of Amazon and ensuring that Amazon does not benefit from passing on the costs of the Digital Sales Tax to sellers. Members discussed topics including developing a commission that promotes good company behaviour and methods to protect third party sellers and consumers
Lord Woolley of Woodford (Crossbench) asked the government an urgent question (‘private notice question’) about the impact of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme on BAME communities in the UK. Members discussed topics including large companies publishing ethnicity data and developing a COVID-19 race equality strategy.
Baroness Grender (Liberal Democrat) pressed the government on ensuring no renter who has lost income due to coronavirus will be forced out of their home. Members discussed building more social housing and producing a government funded financial package to pay off rent arrears built up as a result of coronavirus.
Lord Farmer (Conservative) questioned the government about progress made in changes to the divorce procedure, court information technology systems and online information and guidance. Members discussed topics including legal advice for those with children and reforming the law on financial divorce settlements.
Baroness Thornhill (Liberal Democrat) asked the government about the efficacy of the Housing Delivery Test. Members discussed topics including meeting building targets and encouraging the modern method of prefabricated housing.
Lord Robathan (Conservative) quizzed the government about the Great Barrington Declaration on the physical and mental health impacts of COVID-19 policies. Members discussed subjects including the Equality Act, vaccine delivery timeframes and developing alternative solutions to combat coronavirus other than a national lockdown.
Lord Greaves (Liberal Democrat) questioned the government about Rolls-Royce company’s plans to transfer the manufacture of wide-chord fan blades to Singapore. Members discussed assisting Rolls-Royce through its financial difficulties and the impact moving would have on the high-tech manufacturing industry in the UK.
Baroness Warwick of Undercliffe (Labour) pressed the government about protecting people from pension scams. Members discussed establishing a central intelligence database for scam alerts and improving support for victims of pension scams.
Lord Randall of Uxbridge (Conservative) raised concern with the government about ending rotational burning of peat moorlands. Members discussed topics including establishing regulation to end rotational burning of blanket bog and the effects on air quality.
Lord Faulkner of Worcester (Labour) asked the government about proposals included in “Project Big Picture” for the reform of the governance of English football. Members discussed loss of income in lower-league football clubs and a timescale for the fan-lead review.
Baroness Sheehan (Liberal Democrat) quizzed the government about equal access for low and middle income countries to any future vaccine for COVID-19. Members discussed subjects including the cost of experimental vaccines and the UK’s commitment to COVAX, the global effort to develop and provide equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments and vaccines.
Baroness D'Souza (Crossbench) questioned the government about assistance for humanitarian, development and girls education work in Afghanistan, after the withdrawal of peacekeeping forces. Members discussed topics including child marriages, the number of Afghan women who have tested positive for COVID-19 and the improvement of women’s rights in the region.
Baroness Bull (Crossbench) asked the government about the report by the Social Mobility Commission 'The long shadow of deprivation' published on 15 September. Members discussed employment interventions as a means of reducing deprivation and the impact of COVID-19 on those already in deprivation.
Baroness McIntosh of Pickering (Conservative) questioned the government on budgets for the Trade and Agriculture Commission and the Trade Remedies Authority. Members discussed subjects including resources available to the authority and the difficulties that may arise from the current Trade and Agriculture Commission timetable.
Lord Baker of Dorking (Conservative) asked the government an urgent question (‘private notice question’) on reducing youth unemployment. Members discussed universal credit claims for 16-24 year olds and the impact large scale unemployment could have on youth mental health and crime.