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 2017-19 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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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
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Preventive Medicine: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what funding he plans to make available for the delivery of the forthcoming green paper on prevention.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

Specific spending commitments in the Green Paper will be met from existing budgets. The future of budgets outside of the NHS England resource settlement will be confirmed at the Spending Review.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Preventive Medicine: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the forthcoming green paper on prevention will include (a) a full analysis of the budget needed to implement the content of that paper and (b) an indication of the sources of funding to deliver the content of that paper.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

The Green Paper ‘Advancing our health: prevention in the 2020s’ was published on 22 July 2019.

Grouped Questions: 278541 | 278542 | 278544
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Preventive Medicine: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the forthcoming green paper on prevention will include a commitment to fully fund local authority public health services.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

The Green Paper ‘Advancing our health: prevention in the 2020s’ was published on 22 July 2019.

Grouped Questions: 278540 | 278542 | 278544
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Preventive Medicine
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the forthcoming green paper on prevention will include commitments on (a) HIV infection and (b) sexual health.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

The Green Paper ‘Advancing our health: prevention in the 2020s’ was published on 22 July 2019.

Grouped Questions: 278540 | 278541 | 278544
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Influenza: Vaccination
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to increase the take-up of the flu vaccination among people most at risk of flu.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

Those most at risk from flu including people over 65, pregnant women, and those in clinical risk groups are offered annual vaccination. At-risk patients are targeted by the Public Health England and NHS England marketing campaign, Help Us Help You, which includes television, radio and advertising supported by public relations, digital search and partnership activity. Communications this year will include messages about a wider range of flu vaccines now available which offer better protection. Help Us Help You can be viewed at the following link:

https://campaignresources.phe.gov.uk/resources/campaigns/81-help-us-help-you/overview

The annual flu letter is available at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/annual-national-flu-programme-2019-to-2020-1.pdf

Those eligible for flu vaccination can get the vaccine from their general practitioner, or in a scheme introduced in 2015/16, through local pharmacies, thus widening patient access. 80% of maternity service providers also offer vaccination to pregnant women.

As part of its assurance process NHS England works through its regional teams and clinical commissioning groups to ensure that practices with lowest uptake are contacted and action is taken to increase vaccination rates.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Preventive Medicine
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when the Government plans to publish its green paper on prevention.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

The Green Paper ‘Advancing our health: prevention in the 2020s’ was published on 22 July 2019.

Grouped Questions: 278540 | 278541 | 278542
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
HIV Infection: Drugs
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with (a) NHS England and (b) Bristol City Council on the routine commissioning of PrEP in Bristol.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is not currently a routinely commissioned service but is provided through the three year PrEP Impact Trial which ends in autumn 2020. Meanwhile, work is now starting to consider future commissioning for PrEP after the Trial has ended. No discussions have been held with Bristol City Council.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
General Practitioners: Bristol West
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many GPs per 1000 of population there were in Bristol West in each year since 2010.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 26 July 2019

The number of general practitioners (GPs), excluding locums, per 1,000 patients in the NHS Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG since 2015 is show in the attached table. GP locums are excluded as improvements have been made to GP locum recording methodology and figures are not comparable prior to December 2017. Data is not included prior to 2015 as improvements were made to the methodology for recording all staff working in general practice in September 2015 and data prior to this is not comparable.

GPs per thousand patients in Bristol (Word Document, 21.71 KB)
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Universal Credit: Mental Illness
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 17 May 2019 on Universal Credit: Mental Illness, whether her Department provides support visits for benefit claimants in secure psychiatric settings.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 26 July 2019

The Department is committed to supporting vulnerable claimants, such as those with mental health conditions. We understand that these claimants may face extra challenges in their lives. Universal Credit is designed to target resources at those that need them most and to provide support for people who cannot work or need extra help moving towards the labour market.

If a claimant is unable to complete their business transaction through any other channel, a referral for a visit is sent to DWP Visiting. The majority of DWP Visiting work takes place in claimants’ homes, however appointments can be arranged at an alternative place such as a hospital or low secure unit.

We recognise the importance of understanding how a mental health condition impacts someone’s ability to prepare for and look for work. That is why we have developed a range of specialised mental health training for work coaches and increased the number of Disability Employment Advisers who can provide additional support where needed.

The Department is committed to the provision of a safe and healthy working environment for employees and claimants, therefore all our visits, irrespective of location, are individually risk assessed which determines the most appropriate means of engagement.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Public Health: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that public health funding is increased as part of the Government’s spending review.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 11 July 2019

Future funding for local authorities’ public health responsibilities will be considered carefully in the next spending review, taking full account of the available evidence.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 01 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Housing: Construction
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to reduce the effect of house building on (a) air and (b) soil pollution.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 10 July 2019

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) is responsible for the Government’s planning policies for England and how these should be applied. Defra works with MHCLG to ensure policies relating to air quality management are embedded in their National Planning Policy Framework. We are exploring options to address emissions from construction materials as announced in the Clean Air Strategy.

Defra’s Construction Code of Practice for the Sustainable Use of Soil on Construction Sites is a practical guide to assist anyone involved in the construction industry to protect the soil resources with which they work. The Environment Agency have published a guide Land contamination: risk management that can be used in the in the planning regime to ensure existing land contamination is dealt with appropriately during the development process.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 01 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Barbecues
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department plans to ban disposable barbecues.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 10 July 2019

We have not made an assessment of the impact of disposable barbecues on the environment, nor do we have plans to ban them.

The Government is working to raise awareness of the impacts of domestic burning and has produced guidance which also asks people to be considerate towards others when using barbecues. The guidance can be found here: https://uk-air.defra.gov.uk/assets/documents/reports/cat09/1901291307_Ready_to_Burn_Web.pdf.

Grouped Questions: 271480
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 01 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Barbecues
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has made a recent assessment of the effect on the environment of the use of disposable barbecues; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 10 July 2019

We have not made an assessment of the impact of disposable barbecues on the environment, nor do we have plans to ban them.

The Government is working to raise awareness of the impacts of domestic burning and has produced guidance which also asks people to be considerate towards others when using barbecues. The guidance can be found here: https://uk-air.defra.gov.uk/assets/documents/reports/cat09/1901291307_Ready_to_Burn_Web.pdf.

Grouped Questions: 271453
Q
(Bristol West)
[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: 04 July 2019
Prime Minister
Climate Change
Commons
To ask the Prime Minister, pursuant to the Answer of 3 July 2019 to Question 270779 on Climate Change and with reference to with reference to her oral contribution of 26 June 2019, Official Report, column 650, what the evidential basis is for the statement that a regret motion in the House of Lords has the effect of blocking a Statutory Instrument.
A
Answered by: Mrs Theresa May
Answered on: 09 July 2019

I have nothing further to add to my answer to the Hon Member during my oral statement of 3 July.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
UK Visas and Immigration: Staff
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many full-time equivalent employees there were in UK Visas and Immigration and its predecessor bodies in each of the last 10 financial years.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) was formed in April 2013. From June 2014, UKVI figures on staffing are published quarterly on gov.uk at: https://www.gov.uk/search?q=Border+and+immigration+cross+cutting+data”. Staffing figures prior to this are not published.


UKVI regularly reviews its capacity plans and resources, redeploying and recruiting staff where necessary to help meet and maintain service standards for individual services”.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
UK Visas and Immigration: Staff
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many people were employed by UK Visas and Immigration in assessing and processing claims for asylum in each of the last 10 financial years.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

The number of people who were employed by UK Visas and Immigration in assessing and processing claims for asylum in each of the last 10 financial years, is not held in a way that can be easily aggregated. To obtain this information would require detailed reporting against multiple cost centres and could only be obtained at disproportionate costs.


Decisions on asylum claims are made by decision makers in Asylum Operations. There are recruitment strategies in place to maintain staffing at the required levels to allow us to manage asylum intake and reduce the overall time to make initial asylum decisions.

All asylum claims lodged in the UK are carefully considered on their individual merits against a background of relevant case law and up to date country information.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Immigration: Windrush Generation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many people at Full Time Equivalent have been employed to establish and administer the system for compensation for victims of the Windrush scandal in the last 12 months.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

The number of FTE employed to establish and administer the Windrush Compensation Scheme has fluctuated according to business need. A small, dedicated development team was set up to establish the scheme, averaging around 20 FTE. Now that the scheme is open for claims we have a budgeted complement for the policy and operational teams of up to 135

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Overseas Visitors: Visas
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many applications for visitor visas have been received, by nationality of country of origin, in each of the last 10 years.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

Information on the amount of visit visa applications received for the purposes of visiting family is not available. The standard visit visa has replaced a range of previous visas including the family visit visa (see https://www.gov.uk/standard-visitor-visa )

Information on the number of total visa applications, grants and refusals, by nationality, the large majority of which are visit visas, can be found in table vi_02_q in volume 1 of our visas tables, the latest of which is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-march-2019/list-of-tables#visas

Grouped Questions: 273414
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Overseas Visitors: Visas
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many applications there have been for visitor visas for the purposes of visiting family, by country of origin of applicant, in each of the last 10 years.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

Information on the amount of visit visa applications received for the purposes of visiting family is not available. The standard visit visa has replaced a range of previous visas including the family visit visa (see https://www.gov.uk/standard-visitor-visa )

Information on the number of total visa applications, grants and refusals, by nationality, the large majority of which are visit visas, can be found in table vi_02_q in volume 1 of our visas tables, the latest of which is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-march-2019/list-of-tables#visas

Grouped Questions: 273413
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Detention Centres: Staff
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average ratio is of detainees to detention officers at (a) Colnbrook and (b) Harmondsworth immigration removal centres in the most recent period for which figures are available.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

The Home Office does not specify a ratio of detainee to detainee custody
officer (DCOs) within immigration removal centres (IRCs) and this information is therefore not recorded. Instead, IRC suppliers are required to provide a safe and secure environment for detainees in their care and all IRC contracts require a minimum staffing level based on the size and layout of each individual centre. The Home Office and its suppliers do not release information on staff deployment as doing so could compromise security of the removal estate.

In the period ahead, new contracts will set high expectations for the quality of the management and staffing in IRCs. The current re-procurement of the contract for the Gatwick IRCs includes provision for increased staffing in key areas, including residential units, to improve welfare and safety.

The dignity and welfare of detainees across the entire detention estate is of the utmost importance and the use of periods of time where detainees’ freedom of movement is restricted contributes to the maintenance of a safe and secure environment in our centres.

Detainees at both Harmondsworth and Colnbrook immigration removal centres (IRC) have a rest period following lunch and curfew period at night, where the total hours of confinement cannot exceed 12 hours a day during the week and 12.5 hours a day at weekends and on bank holidays.

Information on the number of people detained in Harmondsworth and Colnbrook IRCs on the last day of each quarter is available in table dt_12_q of the detention tables in the latest release of ‘Immigration Statistics, year ending March 2019’.

Grouped Questions: 273416 | 273417 | 273418
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