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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Q
Asked by Lord Bradley
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisoners' Release: Curfews
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many prisoners were eligible for Home Detention Curfew in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The following table shows the number of prisoners who were eligible for HDC, and how many and what proportion were released in each of the last five years. Because of the way in which data is recorded, the figures relating to the number eligible are higher than the true picture, as they include all offenders serving sentences of the right length, even though some do not meet the other eligibility criteria (see footnote 1).

2014

2015(3)

2016

2017

2018

Number eligible for release on HDC (1,2)

45,203

43,669

43,660

44,697

40,543

Number released on HDC

8,614

8,319

9,041

9,312

14,769

Percentage released

19%

19%

21%

21%

36%

(1) This is the number of offenders serving sentences of between 12 weeks and just under 4 years and therefore potentially eligible for release on Home Detention Curfew (HDC) in the relevant period. However, it includes offenders who are in fact statutorily ineligible for HDC, such as registered sex offenders or those with a previous recall for breach of curfew on HDC (prisoners not eligible for HDC for these reasons cannot be identified from the data that is held). Moreover, certain offenders are presumed unsuitable for HDC and will only be considered for release in exceptional circumstances.

(2) An offender may be eligible for release on HDC in more than one year. This is because an offender may become eligible for release on HDC in one year and remain in the prison population to be eligible for release as a new year begins.

(3) Figures for 2015 and earlier were produced using an older methodology than for the years 2016 to date.

Data on the number of prisoners refused HDC is not collated centrally and could not be obtained except at disproportionate cost.

A prisoner may be released on or after their HDC eligibility date but may not lawfully be released before the eligibility date; such a release would be counted as a “release in error”. HMPPS publish annual data on releases in error but this does not indicate whether the offender was released on HDC and this could not be established except at disproportionate cost. This data is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/annual-hm-prison-and-probation-service-digest-2017-to-2018

Grouped Questions: HL16897 | HL16898 | HL16899
Q
Asked by Lord Bradley
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisoners' Release: Curfews
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many prisoners were (1) granted, and (2) refused, Home Detention Curfew in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The following table shows the number of prisoners who were eligible for HDC, and how many and what proportion were released in each of the last five years. Because of the way in which data is recorded, the figures relating to the number eligible are higher than the true picture, as they include all offenders serving sentences of the right length, even though some do not meet the other eligibility criteria (see footnote 1).

2014

2015(3)

2016

2017

2018

Number eligible for release on HDC (1,2)

45,203

43,669

43,660

44,697

40,543

Number released on HDC

8,614

8,319

9,041

9,312

14,769

Percentage released

19%

19%

21%

21%

36%

(1) This is the number of offenders serving sentences of between 12 weeks and just under 4 years and therefore potentially eligible for release on Home Detention Curfew (HDC) in the relevant period. However, it includes offenders who are in fact statutorily ineligible for HDC, such as registered sex offenders or those with a previous recall for breach of curfew on HDC (prisoners not eligible for HDC for these reasons cannot be identified from the data that is held). Moreover, certain offenders are presumed unsuitable for HDC and will only be considered for release in exceptional circumstances.

(2) An offender may be eligible for release on HDC in more than one year. This is because an offender may become eligible for release on HDC in one year and remain in the prison population to be eligible for release as a new year begins.

(3) Figures for 2015 and earlier were produced using an older methodology than for the years 2016 to date.

Data on the number of prisoners refused HDC is not collated centrally and could not be obtained except at disproportionate cost.

A prisoner may be released on or after their HDC eligibility date but may not lawfully be released before the eligibility date; such a release would be counted as a “release in error”. HMPPS publish annual data on releases in error but this does not indicate whether the offender was released on HDC and this could not be established except at disproportionate cost. This data is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/annual-hm-prison-and-probation-service-digest-2017-to-2018

Grouped Questions: HL16896 | HL16898 | HL16899
Q
Asked by Lord Bradley
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisoners' Release: Curfews
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government on what grounds each Home Detention Curfew application was refused in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The following table shows the number of prisoners who were eligible for HDC, and how many and what proportion were released in each of the last five years. Because of the way in which data is recorded, the figures relating to the number eligible are higher than the true picture, as they include all offenders serving sentences of the right length, even though some do not meet the other eligibility criteria (see footnote 1).

2014

2015(3)

2016

2017

2018

Number eligible for release on HDC (1,2)

45,203

43,669

43,660

44,697

40,543

Number released on HDC

8,614

8,319

9,041

9,312

14,769

Percentage released

19%

19%

21%

21%

36%

(1) This is the number of offenders serving sentences of between 12 weeks and just under 4 years and therefore potentially eligible for release on Home Detention Curfew (HDC) in the relevant period. However, it includes offenders who are in fact statutorily ineligible for HDC, such as registered sex offenders or those with a previous recall for breach of curfew on HDC (prisoners not eligible for HDC for these reasons cannot be identified from the data that is held). Moreover, certain offenders are presumed unsuitable for HDC and will only be considered for release in exceptional circumstances.

(2) An offender may be eligible for release on HDC in more than one year. This is because an offender may become eligible for release on HDC in one year and remain in the prison population to be eligible for release as a new year begins.

(3) Figures for 2015 and earlier were produced using an older methodology than for the years 2016 to date.

Data on the number of prisoners refused HDC is not collated centrally and could not be obtained except at disproportionate cost.

A prisoner may be released on or after their HDC eligibility date but may not lawfully be released before the eligibility date; such a release would be counted as a “release in error”. HMPPS publish annual data on releases in error but this does not indicate whether the offender was released on HDC and this could not be established except at disproportionate cost. This data is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/annual-hm-prison-and-probation-service-digest-2017-to-2018

Grouped Questions: HL16896 | HL16897 | HL16899
Q
Asked by Lord Bradley
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisoners' Release: Curfews
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many prisoners subject to Home Detention Curfews were released before their Home Detention Curfew Eligibility Date in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The following table shows the number of prisoners who were eligible for HDC, and how many and what proportion were released in each of the last five years. Because of the way in which data is recorded, the figures relating to the number eligible are higher than the true picture, as they include all offenders serving sentences of the right length, even though some do not meet the other eligibility criteria (see footnote 1).

2014

2015(3)

2016

2017

2018

Number eligible for release on HDC (1,2)

45,203

43,669

43,660

44,697

40,543

Number released on HDC

8,614

8,319

9,041

9,312

14,769

Percentage released

19%

19%

21%

21%

36%

(1) This is the number of offenders serving sentences of between 12 weeks and just under 4 years and therefore potentially eligible for release on Home Detention Curfew (HDC) in the relevant period. However, it includes offenders who are in fact statutorily ineligible for HDC, such as registered sex offenders or those with a previous recall for breach of curfew on HDC (prisoners not eligible for HDC for these reasons cannot be identified from the data that is held). Moreover, certain offenders are presumed unsuitable for HDC and will only be considered for release in exceptional circumstances.

(2) An offender may be eligible for release on HDC in more than one year. This is because an offender may become eligible for release on HDC in one year and remain in the prison population to be eligible for release as a new year begins.

(3) Figures for 2015 and earlier were produced using an older methodology than for the years 2016 to date.

Data on the number of prisoners refused HDC is not collated centrally and could not be obtained except at disproportionate cost.

A prisoner may be released on or after their HDC eligibility date but may not lawfully be released before the eligibility date; such a release would be counted as a “release in error”. HMPPS publish annual data on releases in error but this does not indicate whether the offender was released on HDC and this could not be established except at disproportionate cost. This data is available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/annual-hm-prison-and-probation-service-digest-2017-to-2018

Grouped Questions: HL16896 | HL16897 | HL16898
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Academic Health Science Networks
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government by what process, during the current development of policy options for Academic Health Science Centres (AHSC), potential new AHSCs can be considered in areas of England currently unrepresented by existing AHSCs.
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Department-designated Academic Health Science Centres (AHSCs) along with the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaborations (ARCs) are all important components of the country’s health research and innovation ecosystem.

The six current Department-designated AHSCs were made on the basis of an open competition, which was open to eligible National Health Service and University partnerships across England. The recommendations for designation were made to the Department by an international independent panel.

The remit of the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) has recently been expanded to become the umbrella body across the United Kingdom health innovation eco-system. The AAC has been asked to consider the role of new AHSCs within the health system and to ensure that they complement the innovation landscape, rather than add further complexity to it.

It is not possible to provide specific details of the scope and nature of the new designation process at this stage given that the AAC is currently actively considering this. However, it is expected that the future designation process would be open to all NHS and University partnerships across England which meet the published specification to apply, including partnerships in areas of England where there is currently no Departmental-AHSC. As with the previous AHSC designation process, any future process will be run via a full and open competition, assessed by an independent expert panel. Rigorous conflict of interest policies will also be in place throughout the process for all involved to ensure any potential conflicts are dealt with appropriately.

The existing Departmental-AHSC designation will be extended until the end of March 2020 to enable a new designation process to be undertaken. The Department’s expectation is that AHSCs will play an increasingly important role in the health innovation and research landscape over the coming years.

As currently, the success of any newly designated AHSCs will require close interplay and cooperation between research infrastructure, including NIHR Biomedical Research Centres (BRCs) and the NIHR ARCs, and with the AHSNs and wider innovation landscape.

As part of annual monitoring of the existing Department-designated AHSCs, examples of innovations arising from them have been reported to have been made available to patients in the NHS. These include:

- The King’s Health Partners Heart Failure Service, which brings together clinical, research and educational expertise to deliver world class heart care in south London, helping people with heart failure live longer and with better quality of life;

- University College London Partners AHSC adoption of a Learning Health System to standardise data entry and allowing the widespread trialling of novel tools to detect atrial fibrillation early;

- The Manchester AHSC working with partners to align research around core health and social care priorities; and supporting the roll out of a single blood test driven decision-aid for patients presenting with chest pain at local emergency departments; and

- The roll out of the innovative Sleepio app by the Oxford AHSN to support those suffering from insomnia across Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire.

Grouped Questions: HL16932 | HL16934
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Medicine: Research
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what the future relationship will be between Academic Health Science Networks, Academic Health Science Centres and Academic Research Collaborations with regard to the future applied health science ecosystem.
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Department-designated Academic Health Science Centres (AHSCs) along with the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaborations (ARCs) are all important components of the country’s health research and innovation ecosystem.

The six current Department-designated AHSCs were made on the basis of an open competition, which was open to eligible National Health Service and University partnerships across England. The recommendations for designation were made to the Department by an international independent panel.

The remit of the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) has recently been expanded to become the umbrella body across the United Kingdom health innovation eco-system. The AAC has been asked to consider the role of new AHSCs within the health system and to ensure that they complement the innovation landscape, rather than add further complexity to it.

It is not possible to provide specific details of the scope and nature of the new designation process at this stage given that the AAC is currently actively considering this. However, it is expected that the future designation process would be open to all NHS and University partnerships across England which meet the published specification to apply, including partnerships in areas of England where there is currently no Departmental-AHSC. As with the previous AHSC designation process, any future process will be run via a full and open competition, assessed by an independent expert panel. Rigorous conflict of interest policies will also be in place throughout the process for all involved to ensure any potential conflicts are dealt with appropriately.

The existing Departmental-AHSC designation will be extended until the end of March 2020 to enable a new designation process to be undertaken. The Department’s expectation is that AHSCs will play an increasingly important role in the health innovation and research landscape over the coming years.

As currently, the success of any newly designated AHSCs will require close interplay and cooperation between research infrastructure, including NIHR Biomedical Research Centres (BRCs) and the NIHR ARCs, and with the AHSNs and wider innovation landscape.

As part of annual monitoring of the existing Department-designated AHSCs, examples of innovations arising from them have been reported to have been made available to patients in the NHS. These include:

- The King’s Health Partners Heart Failure Service, which brings together clinical, research and educational expertise to deliver world class heart care in south London, helping people with heart failure live longer and with better quality of life;

- University College London Partners AHSC adoption of a Learning Health System to standardise data entry and allowing the widespread trialling of novel tools to detect atrial fibrillation early;

- The Manchester AHSC working with partners to align research around core health and social care priorities; and supporting the roll out of a single blood test driven decision-aid for patients presenting with chest pain at local emergency departments; and

- The roll out of the innovative Sleepio app by the Oxford AHSN to support those suffering from insomnia across Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire.

Grouped Questions: HL16931 | HL16934
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Academic Health Science Networks
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether the innovations arising from the current phase of Academic Health Science Centres are being made available to patients throughout the NHS.
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Department-designated Academic Health Science Centres (AHSCs) along with the Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Applied Research Collaborations (ARCs) are all important components of the country’s health research and innovation ecosystem.

The six current Department-designated AHSCs were made on the basis of an open competition, which was open to eligible National Health Service and University partnerships across England. The recommendations for designation were made to the Department by an international independent panel.

The remit of the Accelerated Access Collaborative (AAC) has recently been expanded to become the umbrella body across the United Kingdom health innovation eco-system. The AAC has been asked to consider the role of new AHSCs within the health system and to ensure that they complement the innovation landscape, rather than add further complexity to it.

It is not possible to provide specific details of the scope and nature of the new designation process at this stage given that the AAC is currently actively considering this. However, it is expected that the future designation process would be open to all NHS and University partnerships across England which meet the published specification to apply, including partnerships in areas of England where there is currently no Departmental-AHSC. As with the previous AHSC designation process, any future process will be run via a full and open competition, assessed by an independent expert panel. Rigorous conflict of interest policies will also be in place throughout the process for all involved to ensure any potential conflicts are dealt with appropriately.

The existing Departmental-AHSC designation will be extended until the end of March 2020 to enable a new designation process to be undertaken. The Department’s expectation is that AHSCs will play an increasingly important role in the health innovation and research landscape over the coming years.

As currently, the success of any newly designated AHSCs will require close interplay and cooperation between research infrastructure, including NIHR Biomedical Research Centres (BRCs) and the NIHR ARCs, and with the AHSNs and wider innovation landscape.

As part of annual monitoring of the existing Department-designated AHSCs, examples of innovations arising from them have been reported to have been made available to patients in the NHS. These include:

- The King’s Health Partners Heart Failure Service, which brings together clinical, research and educational expertise to deliver world class heart care in south London, helping people with heart failure live longer and with better quality of life;

- University College London Partners AHSC adoption of a Learning Health System to standardise data entry and allowing the widespread trialling of novel tools to detect atrial fibrillation early;

- The Manchester AHSC working with partners to align research around core health and social care priorities; and supporting the roll out of a single blood test driven decision-aid for patients presenting with chest pain at local emergency departments; and

- The roll out of the innovative Sleepio app by the Oxford AHSN to support those suffering from insomnia across Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire.

Grouped Questions: HL16931 | HL16932
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Human Embryo Experiments: Regulation
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Earl Howe on 9 October 2013 (HL2237), what assessment the Scientific and Clinical Advances Advisory Committee of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority has made of the regulation of embryoid bodies following the publication of research (1) by Lancaster et al. Cerebral organoids model human brain development and microcephaly in 2013, and (2) in the Nature Cell Biology journal A 3D model of a human epiblast reveals BMP4-driven symmetry breaking on 1 July.
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Scientific and Clinical Advances Advisory Committee of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority has made no formal assessment of the regulation of embryoid bodies following the publication of research by Lancaster et al. Cerebral organoids model human brain development and microcephaly in 2013, and in the Nature Cell Biology journal A 3D model of a human epiblast reveals BMP4-driven symmetry breaking on 1 July. The publications will be brought to the attention of the Committee.

Q
Asked on: 08 July 2019
Department for International Trade
Trade Promotion
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answers by Baroness Fairhead on 23 January (HL12726) and Viscount Younger of Leckie on 4 July (HL16484), whether the Department for International Trade's Regional Trade Plans include recommendations for implementation which reflect the views of the private sector; whether equal consideration is given to the recommendations of small and medium-sized enterprises in addition to those of large organisations; and why they do not currently intend to publish Regional Trade Plans in full.
Answered on: 17 July 2019

To achieve a forward-looking Global Britain the Department for International Trade works with both UK and overseas businesses of all sizes to drive an increase in trade. Regional Trade Plans are strategic documents which drive the delivery of our Departmental objectives overseas and have been developed by teams who work regularly with businesses in their regions and in the UK. These views are reflected in regional priorities in the Plans.

We intend to publish a summary of Regional Trade Plans, which will consolidate more detailed internal plans.

Q
(Romford)
Asked on: 09 July 2019
Treasury
Pay
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps he is taking to ensure that employees are not inadvertently penalised because of incorrect earning reports by employers.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 17 July 2019

HMRC continually monitor the data provided by employers through Real Time Information (RTI) to understand issues, drive improvements and help employers ensure their returns are correct. While incorrect data is sometimes submitted, HMRC systems have been designed to use different mixes of that data to match records correctly where possible. HMRC and DWP work together to ensure that any issues with data are resolved quickly.

Q
Asked on: 09 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Ministry of Justice: Public Consultation
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many consultations the Ministry of Justice has carried out in each of the last five years; and to how many of those it published a formal response within 12 weeks of the consultation closing.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Ministry of Justice has carried out 96 consultations and calls for evidence in the last five years, as follows:

2019 - 4

2018 - 20

2017 - 13

2016 - 20

2015 - 20

2014 (12 July onwards) - 19

We published a response on GOV.UK within 12 weeks of the consultation closing in 26 instances:

2019 - 0 (12 week mark not yet reached for 3 out of 4 consultations)

2018 - 2

2017 - 2

2016 - 8

2015 - 3

2014 (12 July onwards) - 11

These figures include consultations and calls for evidence from the Ministry of Justice and our agencies, but do not include those initiated by independent bodies such as the Law Commission or the Sentencing Council. The figures include consultations run in partnership with other government departments.

All Ministry of Justice consultations and calls for evidence are available on GOV.UK and the online consultation platform, Citizen Space.

Q
Asked by Kate Hoey
(Vauxhall)
Asked on: 10 July 2019
Department for Transport
Motorcycles: Greater London
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many road accidents have been recorded in London involving learner motorcyclists in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The department does not collect data specifically on whether drivers and riders involved in road accidents are learners. The department collects data on personal injury road accidents reported to the police, including contributory factors which the police select when they attend the scene. This does not assign blame for the accident but gives an indication of factors the attending officer thought contributed to the accident.

The number of accidents in London with a contributory factor of ‘Learner or inexperienced driver/rider’ being allocated for the years 2013 to 2017 is given in the table below:

Year

'Learner or inexperienced driver/rider' allocated to any road user

'Learner or inexperienced driver/rider' allocated to a motorcycle

2013

201

74

2014

258

96

2015

223

98

2016

278

101

2017

544

248

Source: DfT Stats19

Please note that this does not simply record the presence of a learner or inexperienced driver/rider, but indicates where inexperience of driving in general, or inexperience of the particular type of vehicle, caused or contributed to the accident.

Q
Asked by Dan Jarvis
(Barnsley Central)
[R]
Close

Registered Interest

Indicates that a relevant interest has been declared.

Asked on: 11 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisoners: Veterans
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many former armed service personnel who have declared their membership of those services are serving a sentence in each prison in Yorkshire.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 17 July 2019

The Ministry of Justice published Experimental Statistics in October 2018, which estimated the numbers of former service personnel in the prison population. The department is due to release the next estimate in October 2019.

This new analysis indicated that as at 30 June 2018, 2032 prisoners had declared as ‘ex-service personnel’ when they were first received into custody between January 2015 and June 2018. The attached table shows the number of ex-service personnel serving a prison sentence in all prisons in Yorkshire as at 30 June 2018.

The Ministry of Justice is committed to ensuring that those who have served in the Armed Forces and who find themselves in the Criminal Justice System are able to access support, whether they are serving their sentence in custody or in the community.

Table for 276194 (Excel SpreadSheet, 13.5 KB)
Asked on: 11 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Tommy Robinson
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure the safety of Stephen Yaxley-Lennon in prison.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 17 July 2019

As per my answer to your previous question, HL8657, we do not comment on individual cases.

The Ministry of Justice confirms that it takes the duty of care very seriously to ensure all prisoners are able to serve their sentences in a safe environment. Each prisoner is risk assessed upon reception into custody and extra measures are put into place to protect prisoners where there are concerns for their welfare.

Q
(Stockton South)
[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: 12 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Autism: Diagnosis
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will take steps to reduce waiting times for autism assessments for adults.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 17 July 2019

No one should have to face long waits for an autism assessment. We expect services to adhere to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) quality standard which recommends that the length between referral and a first appointment to start an assessment should be no more than three months.

We are determined to drive up performance nationally. We will use data on autism diagnosis waiting times, available for the first time later this year, to hold local areas to account and act where waiting times exceed the NICE standard.

Whilst a diagnosis of autism should happen as soon as possible, it is important to recognise that a diagnosis is often complex and can involve different professionals and agencies. We are following the prevailing clinical guidance set out by NICE.

NHS England and NHS Improvement encourage local areas to follow existing NICE guidelines and quality standards when commissioning and delivering diagnosis services for both children and adults.

Grouped Questions: 276606 | 276607
Q
(Stockton South)
[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: 12 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Autism: Diagnosis
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will take steps with NHS England to implement a waiting time standard for autism diagnosis in the CCG Improvement and Assessment Framework in order to tackle regional differences.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 17 July 2019

No one should have to face long waits for an autism assessment. We expect services to adhere to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) quality standard which recommends that the length between referral and a first appointment to start an assessment should be no more than three months.

We are determined to drive up performance nationally. We will use data on autism diagnosis waiting times, available for the first time later this year, to hold local areas to account and act where waiting times exceed the NICE standard.

Whilst a diagnosis of autism should happen as soon as possible, it is important to recognise that a diagnosis is often complex and can involve different professionals and agencies. We are following the prevailing clinical guidance set out by NICE.

NHS England and NHS Improvement encourage local areas to follow existing NICE guidelines and quality standards when commissioning and delivering diagnosis services for both children and adults.

Grouped Questions: 276605 | 276607
Q
(Stockton South)
[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: 12 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Autism: Diagnosis
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make it his policy to work with NHS England to establish autism diagnosis waiting times standards for each (a) sustainability and transformation partnership and (b) integrated care system.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 17 July 2019

No one should have to face long waits for an autism assessment. We expect services to adhere to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) quality standard which recommends that the length between referral and a first appointment to start an assessment should be no more than three months.

We are determined to drive up performance nationally. We will use data on autism diagnosis waiting times, available for the first time later this year, to hold local areas to account and act where waiting times exceed the NICE standard.

Whilst a diagnosis of autism should happen as soon as possible, it is important to recognise that a diagnosis is often complex and can involve different professionals and agencies. We are following the prevailing clinical guidance set out by NICE.

NHS England and NHS Improvement encourage local areas to follow existing NICE guidelines and quality standards when commissioning and delivering diagnosis services for both children and adults.

Grouped Questions: 276605 | 276606
Q
(Leeds East)
Asked on: 12 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisons: Staff
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, on how many occasions prison staff in each prison had their pay deducted for not being able to complete a shift as a result of an assault in 2018.
A
Answered by: Robert Buckland
Answered on: 17 July 2019

HMPPS does not deduct pay if an employee is sent home as a result of sickness or if they have been assaulted at work.

HMPPS is committed to safeguarding the safety and wellbeing of its staff. A comprehensive occupational health service and employee assistance programme is available to all staff and systems are in place to deal with perpetrators of violence against staff quickly and robustly. Safety remains a top priority and we recently changed the law to double sentences for those that attack our hardworking staff. Additionally, we introduced body-worn cameras and are rolling out PAVA incapacitant spray to keep officers safe.

Q
(Dunfermline and West Fife)
[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: 17 July 2019
Department for Transport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the answer of 15 July 2019 to Question 274560, what the driving test centre service standard travel distance criteria is; what the locations are of the test centres that each of the 19 closed test centres merged with; and which test centres those closed test centres have merged with.
Q
Asked by Kate Green
(Stretford and Urmston)
Asked on: 17 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, pursuant to the Answer of 18 June 2019 to Question 264316 on Television: Licensing, how many (a) men and (b) women were given a prison sentence for failure to pay fines imposed for non-payment of the BBC licence fee in each of the last five years.
Q
(Leeds East)
[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: 17 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many women were sentenced to imprisonment for (a) 1 month or less, (b) 3 months or less and (c) 6 months or less for each of the offences listed in the Home Office Offence Code that his Department classifies as (i) non-violent and non-sexual offences and (ii) violent and sexual offences.
Q
(Leeds East)
[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: 17 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many women sentenced to prison for theft from shops received sentences of (a) less than one month, (b) less than three months, (c) less than six months, (d) less than 12 months and (e) 12 months or more.
Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 02 July 2019
House of Commons Commission
Plastics: Recycling
Commons
To ask the right hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington, representing the House of Commons Commission, what plans the Commission has to increase the level of (a) recycling and (b) reuse to reduce the use of single-use plastic.
A
Answered by: Tom Brake
Answered on: 16 July 2019

On increasing recycling and re-use, Parliament’s Environment Team works in close partnership with its waste contractor to respond to new and emerging opportunities to recycle and recover waste. The waste contract includes a requirement for driving continuous improvements in Parliament’s recycling performance.

Parliament achieved a recycling rate of 59% in 2018–19, with a long-term target to recycle 75% of waste (by weight) by 2020–21.

On reducing single-use avoidable plastics, in May 2018 Parliament announced a comprehensive range of initiatives to drastically reduce its consumption of single-use avoidable plastics:

  • Eliminate plastic bottled water
  • Eliminate condiment sachets (through substitution)
  • Eliminate plastic-lined hot drinks cups, alongside introduction of a ‘latte levy’
  • Sell and incentivise the use of re-usable ‘keep cups’
  • Substitute disposable catering take-away items with compostable alternatives, alongside the introduction of a compostable waste stream
  • Substitute plastic tumblers with compostable alternatives
  • Substitute plastic carrier bags with paper ones
  • Implement a ‘green stationery’ catalogue
  • Pilot a re-usable delivery container scheme at the Offsite Consolidation Centre
  • Produce procedures for incorporating the environmental impact of packaging waste into the weighting of relevant procurement exercises


Except for the delivery container pilot scheme, for which a feasibility study has been completed, all single-use plastic initiatives have been fully implemented.

Asked on: 02 July 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Civil Engineering
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to support the civil engineering sector in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
A
Answered by: Lord Henley
Answered on: 16 July 2019

The Government’s long-term commitment to drive productivity in the construction industry includes support for civil engineering through the UK’s National Infrastructure and Construction Pipeline, which is worth over £400bn of planned public and private investment in nearly 700 projects, programmes and other investments. This includes around £190bn to be invested by 2020/21. It is estimated the next decade will see over £600bn of public and private investments in infrastructure. The National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) has also been increased to £37bn and has been extended by another year until 2023-24. The NPIF is the cornerstone of the Government’s plan to boost growth in areas critical to productivity.

The investments we are making from the Construction Sector Deal to transform the sector’s productivity includes our commitment to invest £170m, matched by £250m from industry in the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) in the Transforming Construction: Manufacturing Better Buildings programme. The programme will improve productivity through promoting the development and commercialisation of digital, manufacturing, energy generation and storage technologies for the construction and built environment sectors. The Transforming Construction programme will also promote a range of R&D and demonstration projects through cross sector collaboration; and £72m will be invested in the Transforming Construction Alliance – a consortium of the Centre for Digital Built Britain, the Manufacturing Technology Centre and the Building Research Establishment to support collaboration. The sector deal will aim to create a new business model, driven by investment, and embedded throughout the UK.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[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: 11 July 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Vegetable Oils
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to support businesses to develop new and more sustainable vegetation oils as a replacement for palm oil.
A
Answered by: Chris Skidmore
Answered on: 16 July 2019

The Government is committed to working with business and others to create a UK market for sustainably sourced palm oil for households and reduce the environmental impact of palm oil production overseas.

In 2012, the Government convened an industry-led UK Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil. This brought together trade associations for palm oil-using sectors to improve reporting, traceability and understanding of supply chains to increase the use of certified palm oil. As a result the market share of sustainable palm oil in the UK has increased from 16% in 2010 to 75% in 2017.

Internationally, as a member of the Amsterdam Declarations Partnership, the UK is driving 100% sustainable palm oil supply chains in Europe. The UK also supports the Tropical Forest Alliance (TFA) which recently secured the Marrakesh Declaration on palm oil. The Declaration has seen seven African palm oil producing countries and major companies agree principles for responsible palm oil.

This builds on earlier Government efforts to tackle non-household use of vegetable oils such as palm oil in sectors such as biofuels, by promoting waste-derived biofuels. Two thirds of biofuels in 2017-2018 were from such wastes.

We recognise that more remains to be done and will continue to explore opportunities to improve the sustainability of palm oil production.

Q
(Peterborough)
[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: 16 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to (a) raise the maximum penalty for causing death by (i) dangerous driving and (ii) careless driving under the influence of drink or drugs to life imprisonment, (b) create a new offence of causing serious injury by careless driving and (c) increase the minimum period of disqualification for drivers convicted of causing death by any driving offence.
Q
(Peterborough)
[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: 16 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps he has taken to implement his Department’s response to the consultation on driving offences and penalties relating to causing death or serious injury, published on 17 October 2017, Cm 9518.
Q
Asked by Lord Freyberg
Asked on: 16 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the amount of research and development funding required by organisations involved in (1) health research, and (2) data-driven health research, in the UK.
Q
Asked by Lord Jopling
Asked on: 16 July 2019
Home Office
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Vere of Norbiton on 5 July (HL16754), what assessment they have made of the extent to which police forces are prosecuting anyone found illegally using an electric scooter on public highways in cases where driving licences, insurance policies or number plates are not in use.
Asked on: 16 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many prisoners there are in HMP Belmarsh; and how many of those are serving sentences for civil offences.
Q
Asked by Gill Furniss
(Sheffield, Brightside and Hillsborough)
[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: 17 June 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Whirlpool Corporation: Tumble Dryers
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, for what reason he decided to issue a recall notice to Whirlpool in relation to that company's tumble driers; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Kelly Tolhurst
Answered on: 15 July 2019
Holding answer received on 20 June 2019

The Office for Product Safety and Standards’ (OPSS) actions have been driven by a commitment to ensure public safety. On 4 June, OPSS issued a letter of intent to serve a recall notice. As a result, Whirlpool is instigating a full recall of unmodified, affected tumble dryers. The House was updated of this action in a written ministerial statement on 10 July.

Asked on: 01 July 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Pakistan: Blasphemy
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the sentencing of Shagufta Kauser and her husband to death in Pakistan for alleged blasphemy; what assessment they have made of whether Shagufta Kauser is (1) from a Christian minority, and (2) illiterate; what representations they have made to the government of Pakistan on her behalf; what response they have received to these representations; and what estimate they have made of the number of people currently facing the death sentence in Pakistan for alleged blasphemy.
A
Answered on: 15 July 2019

We continue to monitor the case of Shagufta Kauser and her husband Shafqat Emmanuel who were sentenced to death in April 2014. We understand that Shagufta Kauser is of the Christian faith and we are aware of media reports stating that she and her husband are both illiterate.

We regularly raise our concerns about the misuse of the blasphemy laws with the government of Pakistan at a senior level. The harsh penalties for blasphemy, including the death penalty, add to these concerns. We remain firmly opposed to the death penalty in all circumstances. We have repeatedly called upon the Government of Pakistan to end capital punishment and, as a minimum, commit to publicly renewing the previously imposed moratorium on the death penalty. Concerns about Freedom of Religion or Belief and the protection of minority religious communities were raised with Pakistan's Federal Minister for Human Rights, Dr Shireen Mazari, during a ministerial visit to Islamabad in February.

We do not hold figures for individuals on specific charges overseas. According to the US State Department 2018 Report on Freedom of Religion or Belief, at the time of publication, 77 individuals were imprisoned in Pakistan on blasphemy charges, 28 of whom had received death sentences.

Asked on: 01 July 2019
Home Office
Cannabis: Misuse
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to review policy surrounding the use of cannabis, including the implementation of tougher sentences and penalties for drug use.
Answered on: 15 July 2019

As set out in the Drug Strategy 2017, the government has no plans to decriminalise cannabis. Tough enforcement is a fundamental part of our drug strategy. The possession of any amount of a controlled drug is a criminal offence and the supply of a controlled drug is an even more serious offence. We are taking a smarter approach to restricting the supply of drugs: adapting our approach to reflect changes in criminal activity; using innovative data and technology; and taking coordinated partnership action to tackle drugs alongside other criminal activity.

Asked on: 04 July 2019
Cabinet Office
Legislation
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many post-legislative reviews by Government departments have been completed and published since 1 January 2018; and in what form they were published.
A
Answered by: Lord Young of Cookham
Answered on: 15 July 2019

Effective post-legislative scrutiny is fundamental to driving up standards of legislation. The Government is committed to providing Parliament with information to assist in this vital role through the submission of a memorandum to the relevant departmental select committee with a preliminary assessment of how the act has worked in practice within five years of Royal Assent.

The Government does not centrally hold information on the post-legislative reviews completed by Departments and published since 1 January 2018; the optimum moment for post legislative memoranda to be submitted is a matter for individual departments in discussion with the relevant departmental select committee. Memoranda are laid before Parliament as command papers and published on gov.uk. It is of course for the relevant committee to decide whether it wishes to conduct further post-legislative scrutiny but the Government would welcome further scrutiny of these memoranda.

Q
Asked by Neil O'Brien
(Harborough)
Asked on: 08 July 2019
Department for Transport
Driving: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many people applied for an international driving licence in each month in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 15 July 2019

Monthly information on the number of international driving permits is only available from February 2019 and is shown below:

Month

IDPs issued

February

65,923

March

282,398

April

163,274

May

43,555

June

28,570

Prior to February 2019, the AA, RAC and the Post Office issued IDPs. Collectively they issued around 100,000 IDPs annually.

Q
Asked by Neil O'Brien
(Harborough)
Asked on: 08 July 2019
Department for Transport
Driving: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many and what proportion of UK driving licence holders have an international driving licence.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 15 July 2019

Between 1 February 2019 and 30 June 2019, the Post Office issued 583,720 IDPs on behalf of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency. This represents 1.12% of the 48 million GB driving licence holders. Prior to February 2019, the AA, RAC and the Post Office issued IDPs. Collectively they issued around 100,000 IDPs annually, and some of these would still be valid.

Q
(Dunfermline and West Fife)
Asked on: 08 July 2019
Department for Transport
Driving Tests
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many driving test centres have closed in each constituency in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 15 July 2019

The attached table shows the number of driving test centres, which conducted practical car tests that closed in each of the last five years, and the constituencies that were affected.

In all cases where the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency has closed a test centre it has continued to provide a testing service provision to its customers.

30 of the closed test centres were relocated and re-opened at another location within the service standard travel distance criteria.

19 of the closed test centres merged with another test centre.

Q
(Easington)
[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
Department for Work and Pensions
Personal Independence Payment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, pursuant to the Answer of 8 July 2019 to Question 272815 on Personal Independence Payment, what assessment he has made of the effect of the quality-driven approach to personal independence payment on the number of cases going to tribunal.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 15 July 2019

It is still too early to assess the full impact of this approach. However initial feedback has been positive and the recently published PIP Official Statistics up to April 2019 showed an increase in the proportion of decisions changed at the Mandatory Reconsideration stage since the approach was implemented.

Q
Asked by Neil O'Brien
(Harborough)
[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
Offensive Weapons: Convictions
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many and what proportion of people convicted of possession of an offensive weapon for whom it was a (a) a first, (b) a second, (c) a third and (d) a fourth or more conviction for this offence, did not receive an immediate custodial sentence in each year since 2007.
A
Answered by: Robert Buckland
Answered on: 15 July 2019

Please find the response in the table attached.

Table (Excel SpreadSheet, 19.72 KB)
Q
(Luton South)
[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
Department for Transport
Driving Offences: British Nationals Abroad
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what support his Department plans to provide to UK nationals accused of (a) driving offences and (b) exceeding the speed limit when driving their UK-registered vehicle in the EU in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
A
Answered by: Chris Grayling
Answered on: 15 July 2019

All UK nationals must be aware and obey the local traffic laws of the country they are in when driving abroad. Information is available on www.gov.uk which we would urge drivers to read before they travel. If unsure, drivers can also refer to other sites or seek information from recognised driving associations or automobile clubs. The need to be aware and abide with the laws of another country is unaffected by any arrangements to leave the EU.

The Government does not currently provide legal support or advice to UK nationals accused of a traffic offence abroad and there are no plans to provide legal support or advice in the future.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[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
Department for Education
Artificial Intelligence: Education
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether his Department plans to (a) update curriculums and (b) develop new courses to take account the evolution of artificial intelligence.
A
Answered by: Anne Milton
Answered on: 15 July 2019

Ensuring that our children have the digital and computing skills needed for the future is a key priority of this government. Demand for high-level skills in computing will continue to grow in the years ahead and will be crucial to supporting a successful economy.

To meet the demand for high-level skills in computing, the government has introduced computing as a statutory national curriculum subject at all four key stages and reformed the computer science GCSE and A Level. The reformed GCSE, introduced for first teaching from September 2016, aims to ensure that all pupils understand the fundamental principles of computer science, including knowledge on artificial intelligence, programming, coding and data representation. The reformed A level places emphasis on programming, algorithms and problem solving.

In March 2018, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, committed to making no further changes to the national curriculum beyond those that had already been announced in response to teacher feedback. Currently there are no plans to make further changes to the national curriculum during this Parliament.

In November 2018 DfE launched the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE), backed by £84 million in new funding. The NCCE is run by a coalition of STEM Learning, the British Computing Society and Raspberry Pi and supported by industry.

The department is introducing T Levels as a high quality, technical alternative to A levels. The first T levels will start in September 2020, with all routes available from September 2022. Digital is one of the first subjects that will be rolled out in 2020. The department is also designing new apprenticeship standards that are more responsive to the needs of business both now and in the future, ensuring that employers can secure the skills they need to succeed.

Finally, the government recently announced further investment to drive up skills in artificial intelligence (AI) and data science and support more adults to upskill and retrain to progress in their careers or find new employment.

Up to 2,500 people from underrepresented groups will have the opportunity to retrain and become experts in data science and AI, thanks to a £13.5 million investment to fund new degree and Masters conversion courses and scholarships at UK academic institutions over the next three years.

Q
Asked by Jo Stevens
(Cardiff Central)
[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: 10 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Legal Aid Scheme: Solicitors
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the reform of legal aid on average annual earnings of legal aid solicitors.
A
Answered by: Paul Maynard
Answered on: 15 July 2019

On 7 February 2019, the Government published the Post Implementation Review (PIR) of Part 1 of The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/post-implementation-review-of-part-1-of-laspo

The review did not look at the earnings of individual solicitors, but reported instead on the impact on legal aid providers, including solicitors firms and individual barristers.

Q
Asked by Jo Stevens
(Cardiff Central)
[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: 10 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Criminal Proceedings: Legal Aid Scheme
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment his Department has made of the financial impact on defendants of the introduction of an upper limit on disposable income for people claiming legal aid for Crown Court representation.
A
Answered by: Paul Maynard
Answered on: 15 July 2019

On 7 February 2019, the Government published the Post Implementation Review (PIR) of Part 1 of The Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 which included an assessment of the impact of the £37,500 disposable income threshold introduced at the Crown Court: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/post-implementation-review-of-part-1-of-laspo

Alongside the PIR, the Government also published its Legal Support Action Plan in which it announced a comprehensive review of the wider legal aid eligibility regime; this will include the Crown Court thresholds. The review is expected to conclude by Summer 2020 after which we will publish a full consultation paper setting out our future policy proposals in this area. We will seek to implement any final recommendations as soon as practicable following public consultation.

Q
Asked by Priti Patel
(Witham)
[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: 10 July 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Planning Permission: Hatfield Peverel
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, with reference to the three planning decisions he announced on 8 July 2019 for the sites Gleneagles Way and Stone Path Drive in Hatfield Peverel, if he will make an assessment of the availability of public transport in Hatfield Peverel.
A
Answered by: Kit Malthouse
Answered on: 15 July 2019

In reaching his decisions on these cases, the Secretary of State took into account the wide range of issues raised, based on the detailed findings of the planning inspector who held an inquiry into these cases, and the further representations made by the various parties. The decision letters set out in detail the Secretary of State’s reasoning and conclusions. They can be found on the Department's website at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/planning-applications-called-in-decisions-and-recovered-appeals

Now that the decisions have been issued the Secretary of State has no further jurisdiction in these matters, and it would not be appropriate for Ministers to comment further on the reasons for the decisions or the merits of the schemes. Annexed to each decision letter is a schedule of all representations and correspondence received since the close of the inquiry, together with details about how copies of this material may be obtained.

Grouped Questions: 275745 | 275747
Q
(Hendon)
Asked on: 15 July 2019
Department for Transport
Motor Vehicles: Children
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent guidance he has published on the use of off-road all-terrain vehicles by people under the legal driving age.
Asked on: 01 July 2019
Department for Transport
Driving: Licensing
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Vere of Norbiton on 26 June (HL16465), what assessment they have made of the case for introducing a target time for the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to (1) send out questionnaires to doctors to confirm the fitness of someone to drive after having received a request for a licence to be reinstated, and (2) make a decision once it has received a questionnaire back from a doctor, to ensure that the DVLA are delivering an efficient service.
A
Answered on: 12 July 2019

There are no plans to introduce additional target times for activities within the medical application process. The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) dealt with around 750,000 medical cases in 2017/18 and aims to complete 90 per cent of these within 90 working days. In the financial year 2018-19 the DVLA completed 91.7% of cases within 90 working days.

The DVLA aims to deal with all cases as efficiently and as quickly as possible. The length of time taken to deal with an application depends on the medical condition involved and whether information is needed from medical professionals.

Q
Asked by Cat Smith
(Lancaster and Fleetwood)
Asked on: 03 July 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Disability: Children
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps her Department has taken to co-ordinate cross-government policy on disabled children.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 12 July 2019

The Minister for Family Support, Housing and Child Maintenance leads on policy for children and families within DWP. To fulfil this role, the DWP works with a range of other departments to ensure the policy we deliver for children and families is effective. This role does not extend to coordinating children and families’ policy across government.

On Tuesday 25 June, the Government launched a new cross-government approach on disability. This is guided by a vision where disabled people can participate fully in society and that recognises the contributions that disabled people make.

To drive forward this approach, government will establish a new cross-departmental disability team in the Cabinet Office, and the Office for Disability Issues will be incorporated into the team. This move recognises that disabled people face barriers across a wide range of aspects of their lives and across the whole of the life course, including throughout childhood, and that coordinated cross-government action is therefore vital.

The new Cabinet Office disability team will sit in the new Equalities Hub alongside the Government Equalities Office and the Race Disparity Unit. Together they will be better equipped to understand that people are often affected by multiple discriminations and disadvantages and to drive meaningful progress on equality.

The team will work closely with disabled people, disabled people’s organisations and charities to take forward this new approach to disability, with their views and experiences at the forefront of any new policy.

In addition, part of the role of the Minister of State for Disabled People, Health and Work is to work across government to encourage the development of policies to tackle the barriers disabled people face to realising their full participation in society. Whilst disability policy is the responsibility of all Departments, by working together we can improve disabled peoples’ participation, for which we are jointly responsible.

Q
(Greenwich and Woolwich)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Environment Protection: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to 25 Year Environment Plan published on 11 January 2018, what estimate he has made of the additional financial resources required to deliver the commitments made in that plan for the financial years (a) 2019-20 (b) 2020-21 and (c) 2021-22.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 12 July 2019

Delivering the plan requires systemic changes across all parts of our economy. Our recently published Green Finance Strategy is an example of how we are driving this change by ensuring environmental risks and opportunities are integrated into mainstream financial decision-making; and accelerating finance to support the delivery of our environmental ambitions.

A key pillar of this approach is our plan to replace the scheme of payments under the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy with a new Environmental Land Management scheme. As we leave the EU, we will establish a new scheme of payments to reward land managers for providing public goods, aligned to the goals of the 25 Year Environment Plan.

In addition, the forthcoming Environment Bill will introduce a mandatory biodiversity net gain requirement for development. This will incentivise the avoidance of environmental impacts in development design, encourage the delivery of wildlife habitats in development sites, and stimulate the development of markets in habitat creation which will help to ensure that developers are able to fulfil net gain obligations off site when appropriate. We have also announced £50 million of funding for a new Woodland Carbon Guarantee to stimulate domestic carbon offsetting and incentivise new tree planting, and awarded £10 million of funding to four landscape-scale projects to help restore 6,580 hectares of upland and lowland peatlands over three years, with forecast 23,000 tonnes of carbon saved per year.

Q
(Leeds East)
Asked on: 04 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisons
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what the average number of prisoners in each of the prisons in the 10 Prisons Project was in (a) the last six months of 2017 and (b) the last six months of 2018.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 12 July 2019

The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) publishes monthly individual prison population and capacity information through the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/prison-population-statistics

The table below shows the average level of prison population in each of the prisons in the 10 Prisons Project in the last six months of 2017 and 2018.

Prison

July-Dec 17

July- Dec18

Hull

1025

990

Humber

1051

1005

Isis

619

621

Leeds

1113

1027

Lindholme

1002

902

Moorland

1000

959

Nottingham

983

856

Ranby

1058

1008

Wealstun

820

806

Wormwood Scrubs

1218

1147

The reduction in population in these prisons follows the national trend for England and Wales. In addition, several prisons across the estate have been operating with reduced capacity. This is due to a range of reasons, such as enabling maintenance to be performed and action taken in response to Urgent Notifications triggered by the Chief Inspector.

The 10 Prisons Project aims to reduce violence in ten of our most challenging prisons by reducing the supply of drugs; restoring basic decency and providing the training and support for prison officers to challenge the behaviour that drives violence. The project received an initial £10 million funding to improve security and decency, and bolster leadership capability over a 12-month period.

Q
Asked by Ann Coffey
(Stockport)
Asked on: 05 July 2019
Department for Education
Children in Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the number of looked-after children who were taken into care as a result of their mother receiving a custodial sentence in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 12 July 2019

The information requested is not held centrally.

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