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
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.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
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.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
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.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
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.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
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.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when the Government plans to publish its green paper on prevention.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
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.
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
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.
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
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 assessment she has made of the ratio of detainees to detention officers in immigration removal centres that is considered to be safe.
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: 273415 | 273417 | 273418
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Immigrants: Detainees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many hours per day are detainees in (a) Harmondsworth and (b) Colnbrook immigration removal centres routinely locked in their rooms.
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: 273415 | 273416 | 273418
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Immigrants: Detainees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the highest number of detainees was in (a) Harmondsworth and (c) Colnbrook immigration removal centres in the last 12 months.
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: 273415 | 273416 | 273417
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
Department of Health and Social Care
Mental Health Services: Detention Centres
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many mental healthcare professionals are employed in (a) Harmondsworth and (b) Colnbrook immigration removal centres.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 09 July 2019

From 1 April 2019, the number of whole time equivalent (WTE) posts, across both centres, was increased from 11.6 to 19.8 – including a new senior nursing role and 7.2 WTE registered mental health nurse roles. The increase in staff numbers will enable the provision of 24 hours, seven days a week nursing care.

The number of mental healthcare professionals employed as at the end of June 2019 was 8.6 WTE. These staff work across both the Harmondsworth and the Colnbrook immigration removal centres.

Recruitment to the newly created posts is ongoing.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Immigrants: Detainees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans he has to reduce the number of people held in UK immigration removal centres.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

In the year ending March 2019 24,333 individuals entered the detention estate which is the lowest level since comparable records began in 2009. In the same period 71% of detainees were held for 28 days or less and 93% for less than four months.

The Government expects that changes in policy and operational approaches will lead to a reduction in the number of those detained, and the duration of detention before removal, in turn improving the welfare of those detained.

The Government is committed to using detention sparingly and only when necessary. The Home Office has taken a systematic approach to modernising and rationalising the immigration detention estate, ensuring the geographical footprint and resilience required to meet our future needs. By this summer the estate will be almost 40% smaller than it was four years ago and of significantly higher quality.

Grouped Questions: 273421
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Detention Centres
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans he has to change the provision of immigration removal centres in the UK; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

In the year ending March 2019 24,333 individuals entered the detention estate which is the lowest level since comparable records began in 2009. In the same period 71% of detainees were held for 28 days or less and 93% for less than four months.

The Government expects that changes in policy and operational approaches will lead to a reduction in the number of those detained, and the duration of detention before removal, in turn improving the welfare of those detained.

The Government is committed to using detention sparingly and only when necessary. The Home Office has taken a systematic approach to modernising and rationalising the immigration detention estate, ensuring the geographical footprint and resilience required to meet our future needs. By this summer the estate will be almost 40% smaller than it was four years ago and of significantly higher quality.

Grouped Questions: 273420
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 have applied for compensation from the Windrush compensation scheme to date.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

We will publish information on the number of claims submitted, number of claims paid and the overall amount paid out by the scheme in due course as part of our regular reporting to the Home Affairs Select Committee.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Home Office
Immigration: Windrush Generation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions on the effect of a wrong decision being made denying a person the right to re-enter the UK under the Windrush scandal on eligibility for benefits and tax credits which require residency in the UK for the last two years.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

Officials in the Home Office continue to work closely with the DWP and HMRC on the design and delivery of the compensation scheme but also on individual cases through the Taskforce. The joint working has enabled those with a right to benefits to have them re-instated.

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 applications for compensation by people affected by the Windrush scandal have been successful, and how many of those successful applicants have received compensation.
A
Answered by: Caroline Nokes
Answered on: 09 July 2019

We will publish information on the number of claims submitted, number of claims paid and the overall amount paid out by the scheme in due course as part of our regular reporting to the Home Affairs Select Committee.

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: 09 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Bristol Prison: Safety
Commons
What steps he is taking to help ensure a safe regime for (a) staff and (b) prisoners in Horfield prison in Bristol.
A
Answered by: Robert Buckland
Answered on: 09 July 2019

An Urgent Notification was invoked at HMP Bristol on 13th June 2019. There has been some progress at HMP Bristol under Special Measures to bolster staff to a sufficient level, reduce illicit drug use and improve living conditions by refurbishing a wing and a number of the showers. However, we know more support is needed. The Secretary of State will publish his response and an initial action plan within 28 calendar days (on 11th July) in response to the most serious and urgent concerns raised.

Immediate action has been taken to ensure prisoners can speak to Samaritans on their in-cell phones. In addition, action has been taken to address issues raised regarding the safer custody hotline and prevent issues from recurring, so prisoners’ family and friends can report any concerns about a prisoner’s welfare directly to the prison.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 01 July 2019
Department for Education
Carers: Young People
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to ensure that local authorities fulfil their statutory duties under section 63 of the Care Act 2014 to provide transition assessments for young carers.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 08 July 2019

The government remains committed to continuing to support all carers to provide care as they would wish in a way that supports their own health, wellbeing and life chances. In June 2018, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) published the Carers Action Plan, a cross-government programme of targeted work to support all carers, including young carers.

DHSC has been working with The Children’s Society to identify and publicise effective practices to local authorities to support young adult carers to make positives transitions between the ages of 16-24. To this end, ‘Shaping our Future: Improving Assessment and Support for Young Carers’ Transition to Adulthood’ was published in June 2019.

Further to the reply to PQ 237696, the government is clear that the Care Act (2014) does place duties on local authorities to undertake transition assessments, and that Care and Support Statutory Guidance sets out how these duties should be met.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 01 July 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Abdullah Öcalan
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 2 May 2019 to Question 248721, whether he has had meetings with the Turkish Government since 2 May 2019 to raise the issue of Abdullah Öcalan's access to lawyers and family visits; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 08 July 2019

​The UK Government has raised Mr Öcalan’s case with the Turkish authorities a number of times. I raised the issue with the Turkish Ambassador on 13 May. I welcome the fact that Mr Öcalan has since been granted access to lawyers on at least two separate occasions and that the hunger strikes undertaken by some of his supporters have now come to an end. I also note that the Council of Europe Committee for the Prevention of Torture paid a further visit to Imrali prison in mid-May, and that the Turkish Minister of Justice recently lifted the court restriction on lawyers' visits there. Whilst I welcome these positive developments, it is important to reiterate that Mr Öcalan remains in our view a convicted terrorist and we condemn the acts of violence perpetrated by the Kurdish Workers’ Party as we condemn all forms of terrorism.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 26 June 2019
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Internet: Regulation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans he has to regulate online activity to bring it into line with activity that would be considered to be illegal if it were conducted offline.
A
Answered by: Margot James
Answered on: 04 July 2019

Our view is that behaviour which is illegal or unacceptable offline should be treated the same online. The Online Harms White Paper sets out our plans for world-leading legislation to make the UK the safest place in the world to be online, through establishing a statutory duty of care that will be enforced by an independent regulator. Companies will be held to account for tackling a comprehensive set of online harms, both those which are illegal and also behaviours that may not be illegal but are nonetheless highly damaging to individuals and society.

We are also ensuring that the criminal law is fit for purpose to deal with online harms. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport and the Ministry of Justice have now engaged the Law Commission on a second phase of their review of abusive and offensive online communications. The Law Commission will review existing communications offences and make recommendations about options for reform. This will include considering whether co-ordinated harassment by groups of people online could be more effectively dealt with by the criminal law. The Law Commission will also look at criminal law around non-consensual taking and sharing of intimate images, considering existing offences and identifying whether there are any gaps in the protection already offered to victims. The Law Commission will make recommendations to ensure that criminal law provides consistent and effective protection against such behaviour.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 25 June 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Hedgehogs: Conservation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment there has been of the risk that A24 traps pose to hedgehog populations.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 03 July 2019

The A24 trap is not approved for trapping hedgehogs. We are confident that hedgehogs can be effectively and safely excluded from the Goodnature A24 trap when it is set according to manufacturer’s instructions and, as is required by law, an excluder tunnel is used. We are also not aware of any evidence which suggests the A24 trap or the excluder tunnel has any impact on hedgehogs.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 25 June 2019
Department for Education
Universities: Antisemitism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what monitoring is taking place on university campuses to ensure compliance with the International Holocaust Remembrance Association definition of anti-semitism.
A
Answered by: Chris Skidmore
Answered on: 03 July 2019

There is no place in our society, including within higher education, for hatred or any form of discrimination or racism, such as antisemitism. This is why I have called on higher education providers to accept the International Holocaust Remembrance Association (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism.

Higher education providers are autonomous organisations, responsible for the management of their own internal affairs. They should discharge their responsibilities fully and have robust policies and procedures in place to comply with the law, and to investigate and swiftly address all hate crime, including any antisemitic incidents that are reported.

On 16 May 2019, I wrote to all higher education providers to urge them to consider adopting the IHRA definition and set out my view that this is a useful tool which will help front-line services better understand and recognise instances of antisemitism. The government believes that adopting the IHRA definition of antisemitism sends a clear message that antisemitic behaviour will not be tolerated, and that any instances of antisemitism will be taken very seriously.

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: 28 June 2019
Prime Minister
Climate Change
Commons
To ask the Prime Minister, with reference to her oral contribution of 26 June 2019, Official Report, column 650, what the evidential basis is for her statement that the Labour party in the House of Lords is trying to block the net zero 2050 legislation.
A
Answered by: Mrs Theresa May
Answered on: 03 July 2019

I refer the Hon Member to the answer I gave her during my statement on the G20.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 25 June 2019
Department for Transport
Transport: Disability
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, who is responsible for monitoring compliance by transport companies with the law on disability access.
A
Answered by: Ms Nusrat Ghani
Answered on: 01 July 2019

This varies according to the mode of transport that each company operates.

The Office of Rail and Road monitors compliance by train operating companies, the Civil Aviation Authority monitors compliance by airports and airlines, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency monitors compliance by maritime operators, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency monitors compliance by bus operators, and each local authority monitors compliance by taxi and private hire vehicle operators in their authority.

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, what assessment his Department has made the effect on the environment of disposable barbecues.
 
Withdrawn
Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 03 June 2019
Ministry of Defence
VJ Day: Anniversaries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what plans her Department has to commemorate far east prisoners of war on the anniversary of VJ day.
A
Answered by: Mr Tobias Ellwood
Answered on: 10 June 2019

The Government and the nation continue to recognise and be thankful for all those who served in the Far East during the Second World War. We recognise the sacrifices made and the horrors to which our personnel were subjected.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is committed to ensuring that ex prisoners of war from the Far East Campaign remain in the public consciousness as much as those who served in other campaigns. The MOD, in conjunction with The Royal British Legion, will look to mark the 75th anniversary of 'Victory over Japan Day' on 15 August 2020 in an appropriate way.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 10 May 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Property: Ownership
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of introducing a statutory time limit for property management companies to issue a certificate of ownership to a new owner after selling a property.
A
Answered by: Kit Malthouse
Answered on: 20 May 2019

The Government expects certificates of compliance to be issued within a reasonable period of time. Legislation is already in place specifying the governance of ownership certificates and their use in support of planning applications. Applicants are legally required to notify the owners of a site when they submit their planning application, so that they have the opportunity to comment. An ownership certificate confirming that other owners have been appropriately notified must be signed when submitting a planning application. It is an offence to issue a false ownership certificate knowingly or recklessly under section 65(6) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 10 May 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Public Health: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the value was of reductions to the local authority public health grant in each year since 2014; and what estimate he has made of trends in the level of funding for that grant in the next three years.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 20 May 2019

The information requested is shown in the following table.

Year

Public Health Grant Allocation (£ billion)

Change in budget (£billion)

2013/14

2.663

-

2014/15

2.795

+0.128

2015/16*

3.031

+0.236

2016/17

3.387

+0.356

2017/18**

3.304

-0.083

2018/19

3.219

-0.085

2019/20

3.134

-0.085

Notes:

*Funding public health services for children aged 0-5 was transferred from the National Health Service to local authorities from October 2015.

** Figures from 2017/18 include funding retained by the Greater Manchester local authority as part of a business rate retention pilot not allocated as grant.

Future funding for local authority public health function will be a matter for the Spending Review.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 10 May 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Property: Sales
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State Work and Pensions, whether her Department has plans to make an assessment of the potential merits of amending legislation on the transfer of ownership of high hazard sites to third parties.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 20 May 2019

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is responsible for the Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations 2015 (COMAH) which require the Competent Authority (which is HSE and the relevant environmental body acting jointly) to be notified in the event of certain changes about a site, including its permanent closure or change of operator name.

HSE has no plans to amend this legislation.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 10 May 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Autism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she make it her policy to provide autism awareness training for staff in (a) her Department and (b) Jobcentres.
A
Answered by: Will Quince
Answered on: 20 May 2019

DWP has a Diversity and Equality Policy Statement. Every person working for the Department has a personal responsibility for implementing and promoting these commitments in their day-to-day dealings with customers, with each other and with employers and partners. Inappropriate behaviour is not acceptable.

DWP have developed Autism Awareness training for all DWP operational staff, using information from the National Autistic Society. This training explains what Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are and how they may impact on a claimants’ daily life, including how this impacts individuals differently. This helps DWP staff be aware of how they can offer appropriate support. The training also focuses on what support DWP can provide to help customers with ASD secure employment, highlighting the tailored support available and focusing on what positive strengths customers with ASD can offer a prospective employer.

Within the Fundamental Learning Journey for all DWP Operational roles, we have learning for Supporting Vulnerable Adults (hosted by Civil Service Learning), Safeguarding children and for Adults and Equality and Diversity.

There is DWP technical learning specifically for staff who need to look at medical evidence for particular medical conditions as part of their job role. This covers the likely care needs for more common medical conditions and signposts to more detailed guidance.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 08 May 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Universal Credit: Mental Illness
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what provision her Department makes for universal credit claimants who are held on restriction under the Mental Health Act 1983.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 17 May 2019

Entitlement to Universal Credit (UC) takes into account individual claimant circumstances, such as income, savings, assets and living arrangements. Should a claimant be held under the Mental Health Act 1983 they may not be eligible for UC.

All claimants, including those who with mental health conditions, receive continuous tailored support through their personal work coaches, and all Departmental staff working with claimants complete extensive training that prepares them for their role. Specific training is provided for working with different vulnerable groups, with guidance to signpost claimants to relevant support, and these circumstances will be recorded on a claimant’s online account.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 08 May 2019
Department for Transport
Bus Service Operators Grant
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 10 July 2018 to Question 159654, what the timescale is for the next phase of the bus service operators grant reform process.
A
Answered by: Ms Nusrat Ghani
Answered on: 17 May 2019

It is still our intention to reform the Bus Service Operators Grant when time allows. We are currently in the process of digitalising the existing paper-based claim process in line with Governments Digital by Default agenda.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 10 May 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Employment: Autism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 193494 on Employment: Autism, if she will make it her policy to disaggregate data on Access to Work statistics to identify the number people with Autism Spectrum Disorders in those data sets.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 17 May 2019

We do not currently have plans to make adjustments to the primary medical condition categories used in Access to Work. The categories we use are consistent with the categories used in the Labour Force Survey. This is so we can compare our data to the disability employment rate.

As explained in the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 193494, when a person with Autism Spectrum Disorders receives support through Access to Work, it will be for a specific issue or condition – e.g. a Mental health condition, difficulty in speaking, etc. – rather than Autism Spectrum Disorder. Access to Work customers may have more than one disability or condition, and it is the condition for which they are receiving support that is recorded on the Access to Work system as their primary health condition.

The Access to Work statistics have been developed using guidelines set out by the UK Statistics Authority, but are still undergoing development and are therefore designated as experimental statistics. We are exploring the scope for potential modification following user feedback about the usefulness of the data.

Users are invited to comment on the development and relevance of these statistics and can send feedback to: access.toworkstatistics@dwp.gsi.gov.uk

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 10 May 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Employment: Autism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 28 November 2018 to Question 193498 on Employment: Autism, over what time period was the Neurodiversity Toolkit was developed; what processes were used to develop that toolkit; and what assessment she has made of the effect of that toolkit on closing the autism employment gap.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 17 May 2019

In 2016, DWP contracted Autism Alliance UK to assemble an Autism Task Group to develop a new Autism and Neurodiversity Toolkit. Membership of the group comprised people with Neuro-diverse conditions, medical professionals/academics and a number of organisations, including: the National Autistic Society, Autism Alliance UK, Autism Plus and Dyscovery Centre.

Within three months, the toolkit was ready to be quality assured by the Hidden Impairments National Group. The toolkit was launched by Philip Rutnam (Civil Service Disability Champion) during Autism Awareness Week, in April 2017.

The toolkit is available to all Civil Servants; helping them to better understand how to support people with Autism or Neuro-diverse conditions. It is hosted on Autism Alliance UK’s website, and is updated regularly by them with professional help and guidance.

As was explained in the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 193495 on Employment: Autism, no formal assessment has been made on the impact of the Toolkit on the autism employment gap.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 08 May 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
HIV Infection: Drugs
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what plans he has to increase the availability of HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) in (a) Bristol and (b) England.
A
Answered by: Seema Kennedy
Answered on: 16 May 2019

In February 2019, additional HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Impact trial allocation places were released to those sexual health clinics in Bristol, the Bristol Royal Infirmary and the Concord Clinic participating in the PrEP trial.

These additional places in Bristol are part of the overall expansion of 13,000 additional PrEP trial places across England, increasing the total number of places to 26,000 for participating clinics. The trial website can be viewed at the following link:

https://www.prepimpacttrial.org.uk/join-the-trial

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 03 April 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Employment: Autism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what plans she has to assess the effectiveness of the local supported proof of concept initiative in closing the autism employment gap.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 12 April 2019

Proofs of Concept are not designed to provide evidence of impacts on national employment trends. Rather, they allow us to test whether a policy idea is deliverable.

The Local Supported Employment Proof of Concept is a relatively small scale programme exploring how combining central and local budgets enables Local Authorities to scale up delivery of Supported Employment. The initiative is designed to support people with a learning disability or autism who are known to adult social care, or who are in contact with secondary mental health services. By working with local authorities, there may be an opportunity for DWP to drive a much stronger focus on job outcomes and on evidence-based commissioning using the Supported Employment model.

We are currently considering our next steps to build on this Proof of Concept.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 03 April 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Employment: Autism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will take steps to tackle the underemployment of people diagnosed with autism.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 12 April 2019

DWP is committed to helping people with health conditions and disabilities, including autism move nearer to the labour market and, when ready, into work, by building more personalised tailored employment and health support.

The majority of DWP’s schemes and programmes are focused on helping people, including people diagnosed with autism, prepare for and enter work. For example:

  • The Work and Health Programme, which rolled out between November 2017 and March 2018, will support around 275,000 people over five years - the majority whom (around 220,000) will be disabled people who can volunteer for the programme at any time.

  • The new Intensive Personalised Employment Support programme, which is due to be rolled out across England and Wales at the end of 2019, will provide highly personalised packages of employment support for people with both disabilities and complex barriers to employment who are considered by DWP work coaches to be more than 12 months from the labour market without intensive support

  • The Local Supported Employment proof of concept is currently exploring how we can combine central and local budgets to scale up delivery of Supported Employment locally. This initiative is designed to explore how a matched funding model could support people with a learning disability or autism who are known to adult social care, or who are in contact with secondary mental health services.

Disabled people who are already working, or who are about to enter work, can apply for in-work support from Access to Work scheme. The scheme has a Hidden Impairment Support Team that provides advice and guidance to help employers support employees with conditions like autism, as well as offering eligible people an assessment to find out their needs at work and help to develop a support plan.

In addition, DWP is engaging with employers through the Disability Confident scheme - supporting them to feel more confident about both employing disabled people, including autistic people, and supporting disabled employees to realise their potential. Over 11,500 employers have signed up to the scheme so far.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 03 April 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Employment: Autism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will take steps to collect and publish data on the employment status of adults diagnosed with autism.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 10 April 2019

Department for Work and Pensions officials are considering how to robustly measure the employment rate among autistic people, including whether it might be possible to collect this information through the Labour Force Survey.

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