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
(Hendon)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for Transport
Electric Scooters: Safety
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment his Department has made of the effect on public safety of e-scooters used on the public highway.
A
Answered by: George Freeman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Given that electric scooters, and other micromobility devices, are treated like any other motor vehicle under the Road Traffic Act, they are subject to laws requiring them to conform to technical standards and be used safely. This includes requirements for users to have insurance, driving licences, number plates, and helmets. At present, it is difficult for electric scooters to meet these requirements and as such they are illegal to use on a public road. Therefore, the Department has made no assessment of their effect on public safety. Ministers are actively looking at ways to provide a framework for UK leadership in transport technology and innovation, and safe and effective regulation. The Future of Mobility regulatory review will address the challenges of ensuring our transport infrastructure and regulation are fit for the future. This is a broad programme of work, and we expect to publish an initial consultation in autumn this year.

Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Occupational Health
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the findings of the John Lewis Partnership Working Well report, published on 11 June 2019 on the benefits to public services of greater workplace health prevention and early intervention; and what steps he plans to take ensure that taxation incentivises early intervention from employers.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281710 | 281711 | 281712 | 281713 | 281714 | 281715
Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Occupational Health: Cost Effectiveness
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential benefit to the public purse of workers receiving workplace medical treatment at work instead of after 28 consecutive days of absence.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281709 | 281711 | 281712 | 281713 | 281714 | 281715
Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Occupational Health: Taxation
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect of the taxation of employees with occupational health support on the take-up of those services by low paid workers.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281709 | 281710 | 281712 | 281713 | 281714 | 281715
Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Occupational Health: Taxation
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies on (a) health prevention and (b) early intervention of the (a) conditions in relation to 28 day consecutive absence and (b)requirement that a health condition must be a direct result of work in the exemption for employer-funded recommended medical treatment under section 320C of the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281709 | 281710 | 281711 | 281713 | 281714 | 281715
Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Occupational Health: Taxation
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the compatibility of the conditions on tax reliefs for workplace health services with his Department's principles of tax simplification.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281709 | 281710 | 281711 | 281712 | 281714 | 281715
Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Income Tax
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect on number of additional workers that would be eligible for the exemption under section 320C of the Income Tax (Earnings and Pensions) Act 2003 of removing the requirement for a 28 consecutive day absence.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281709 | 281710 | 281711 | 281712 | 281713 | 281715
Q
Asked by Jack Lopresti
(Filton and Bradley Stoke)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Treasury
Medical Treatments: Tax Allowances
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost to the Exchequer of removing the requirement for a 28 consecutive day absence and £500 cap per tax year from the s320C ITEPA 2003 (EIM21774) exemption for employer-funded recommended medical treatment.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the valuable work of employers such as the John Lewis Partnership in providing for the health of their staff.

Employers have a critical role to play in helping disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work. Keeping more people in work is good for them. But it is good for the economy too, and it reduces spending on out-of-work benefits, and potentially also demand on the NHS. For employers, investing in employee health and wellbeing can lead to increased workforce productivity and help retain key talent in an organisation.

Employers normally incur expenditure on employee healthcare for a business purpose and can already deduct this in full when calculating their taxable profits under the longstanding general rules for business expenses. This means employers already receive full tax relief for these costs. The Government therefore does not believe that the existing tax system for business expenses incurred by employers provides a barrier to those wishing to support employees at work.

The tax system also ensures employees do not pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions (NICs) on several employer-provided, health-related benefits and there is no corresponding Class 1A NICs liability for employers when there is an exemption for income tax. This includes recommended medical treatment of up to £500 intended to help employees return to work.

This particular exemption is targeted at supporting individuals who are expected to reach or who have already reached four weeks of sickness absence. This is because evidence suggests there is an increased likelihood of employees moving on to benefits after an absence lasting four weeks or longer. The £500 cap is in line with the estimated annual cost of the medical treatment that would typically be recommended to help employees return to work.

In July, the Government launched a consultation on measures to reduce ill health-related job loss. The broad focus of this consultation chimes with recommendations in the John Lewis report, including potential financial incentives to encourage more employers to access occupational health services, driving early and supportive employer action and spreading best practice. However, it also notes that there is limited evidence that making the tax treatment more generous is the most effective lever to incentivise more employers to start offering occupational health provision, if the initial cost is the main barrier for them.

The Government will use the evidence and views gathered during this consultation to develop its proposals further, considering an approach which offers the best value for money and is affordable in the context of the next Spending Review.

Grouped Questions: 281709 | 281710 | 281711 | 281712 | 281713 | 281714
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Crimes of Violence: Sentencing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of reviewing the sentence guidelines for conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Currently, there is no sentencing guideline for conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm (GBH). This offence is covered by common law and separate to the offences related to causing or inflicting GBH.

It is for the Sentencing Council for England and Wales, which is independent of government, to develop sentencing guidelines and monitor their use. The Sentencing Council are in the process of reviewing the definitive guideline on assault offences, and anticipate issuing a consultation on a revised guideline in early 2020.

The Assault guideline and evaluation are available here:

https://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/publications/?type=publications&s=&cat=&topic=assault&year=

Q
Asked by Dan Jarvis
(Barnsley Central)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prisoners: Veterans
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, pursuant to the Answer of 17 July 2019 to Question 276194, how many former armed service personnel who have declared their membership of those services are serving a sentence in each prison in the UK.
A
Answered by: Lucy Frazer
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Since January 2015, Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service has actively been recording service in the Armed Forces as part of the screening process for newly received prisoners into custody.

Recently published Experimental Statistics (October 2018) have indicated that as of 30 June 2018, there were 1,782 prisoners who had declared themselves as ‘ex-service personnel’ serving a sentence in prisons across England and Wales representing 3% of the total prison population for whom we have data on this matter. The attached table shows a breakdown per establishment. The information requested for Northern Ireland and Scotland is not covered by this department.

The department is due to release the next estimate in October 2019.

The Ministry of Justice remains committed to encouraging individuals to declare service in the Armed Forces, as early as possible or at any point whist serving their sentence. This enables them to access the support available whether in custody or the community.

Data Table (Excel SpreadSheet, 20.83 KB)
Q
(Hayes and Harlington)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Treasury
Tax Havens
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has received reports of UK involvement in the tax arrangements disclosed by the Mauritius Leaks in July 2019; and what steps he is taking to tackle the use of tax havens.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

HMRC have reviewed the data disclosed by the Mauritius leaks and identified limited information relating to UK taxpayers. HMRC will investigate any allegations of wrongdoing identified.

The UK Government is at the forefront of the international tax agenda and driving increased collaboration between tax authorities, including through the ground-breaking Common Reporting Standard that is shedding new light on offshore financial accounts around the world. In March 2019, HMRC refreshed their Offshore strategy, called No Safe Havens which sets out how they will continue to help those who try to get it right and tackle those who go overseas in an attempt to pay less than they should. This builds on HMRC’s success in tackling offshore non-compliance which, since 2010, has secured and protected £2.9 billion through offshore disclosure facilities from those who mistakenly believed they could hide money offshore.

HMRC continue to work alongside UK and international partners to identify and tackle tax and economic crime in all its forms.

Q
(Hayes and Harlington)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Treasury
Revenue and Customs: Equal Pay
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the 2016 HMRC Equal Pay Audit provides assurance that HMRC's pay system is free from bias in terms of the protected characteristics defined in the Equality Act 2010.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The purpose of the 2016 Equal Pay Audit has been to give assurance that HMRC’s pay system is free from bias in terms of the protected characteristics and that HMRC continue to comply with the Equality Act 2010 legislation.

Transparency, reporting and monitoring are critical to tackling any inequality revealed through examining pay gaps. HMRC believe that their pay system does not unlawfully discriminate against their people, but they are looking at what is driving pay gaps, considering opportunities to change them and using this as a benchmark to improve.

Q
(Swansea East)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Courts
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps the Government is taking to activate the working group established by the then Lord Chief Justice and then Lord Chancellor in January 2016 to implement the problem-solving court model in England and Wales.
A
Answered by: Wendy Morton
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Problem-Solving Courts Working Group was asked to advise on the feasibility of pilot models and its planned work did not include an implementation stage. The group concluded the workstreams set out in its published terms of reference and has not been reconvened.

There remain barriers to testing or applying the problem-solving courts’ approach in a meaningful way, including upfront resource implications and the need for primary legislation to implement some of the models being proposed, as well as gaps in evidence. However, we are testing and applying “problem-solving approaches”, for example in the testbed sites for on the community sentence treatment requirement protocol and through our support for models applied in Family Drug and Alcohol Courts.

Grouped Questions: 284931
Q
Asked by Lesley Laird
(Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Legal Aid Scheme: Terrorism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what legal aid is available to the families of victims of terrorist attacks.
A
Answered by: Wendy Morton
Answered on: 09 September 2019

In England and Wales, legal aid can be provided if the matter or issue in question is within scope of the legal aid scheme, as defined in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO).

Legal aid is available for advice and assistance for all inquests, subject to a means and merits test. Legal aid funding for legal representation for a family, during an inquest hearing, is not in scope of LASPO. However, families are supported by coroners who can ask questions on their behalf to help them get the answers they need and we are developing a range of measures to improve this service further.

The Government recognises that for certain inquests, bereaved people may require representation; legal aid may therefore be available, through the Exceptional Case Funding scheme, if certain criteria are met:

(a) if a failure to provide such representation would breach, or likely risk a breach of, the government’s obligations under the European Convention of Human Rights, usually Article 2; or

(b) where the Director of Legal Aid Casework (DLAC) makes a determination that there is a ‘wider public interest’ in legal representation being granted.

All individual case funding decisions are taken by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA). It is important that these decisions are, and are seen to be, free from political and Government influence.

Q
(Arfon)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Children: Maintenance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many people have had their (a) driving licence and (b) passport removed as a result of Child Maintenance Service enforcement measures.
A
Answered by: Mims Davies
Answered on: 09 September 2019

This information is not reported. However we do hold clerical data and can advise 15 driving licenses have been removed or suspended and 3 passports have been suspended.

The information regarding committal orders, or sanctions as they are called in the Child Maintenance Service, are reported in our published statistics and can be on found table 11 of the tables document on the attached link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-maintenance-service-august-2013-to-march-2019-experimental

We reported enforcement activities in our CSA statistics until September 2017 when we reduced the number of tables published because most CSA cases had been closed or had begun the Case Closure process. The last publication including the enforcement activities can be found on table 22 of the attached link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-support-agency-quarterly-summary-of-statistics-june-2017

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Prison Accommodation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps he is taking to reduce the prison population.
A
Answered by: Lucy Frazer
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Sentencing is a matter for our independent courts, which take into account the circumstances of the case, including any aggravating and mitigating factors. We are clear that sentencing must match the severity of a crime.

Prison numbers can fluctuate, which is why we have a robust set of plans in place to ensure we will always have enough places for offenders sent to custody by the courts. The Prime Minister recently announced his ambition to transform the prison estate with an additional investment of £2.5 billion which will deliver 10,000 additional prison places.

Q
Asked by John Lamont
(Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for International Trade
Free Zones: Scotland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, whether she has plans to establish areas that are outside the UK’s customs territory in Scotland.
A
Answered by: Conor Burns
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Secretary of State for International Trade recently announced the creation of new UK Freeports that will boost trade, attract inward investment and drive economic growth after Brexit.

Whilst we develop the policy, it is important that we consider a Freeport model that works in the best interests of the whole of the UK. Once a model has been decided, a selection process will take place where specific locations for UK Freeports will be chosen.

Q
(Feltham and Heston)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Electric Vehicles
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what incentive schemes the Government has established to encourage the take-up of electric vehicles; and what assessment her Department has made of the outcomes of each of those schemes.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 09 September 2019

We are investing nearly £1.5bn‎ between April 2015 and March 2021 to support the transition to zero emission motoring. Grants are available for ultra-Low emission vehicles, including cars, vans, lorries and taxis. We also provide schemes to support the installation of charge points in homes, workplaces and on residential streets for those without off-street parking. This represents one of the most comprehensive support packages in the world for the transition to zero emission vehicles. In 2013 we published Driving the Future Today A strategy for ultra low emission vehicles in the UK, in which we projected Ultra Low Emission Vehicles would be between 3% – 7% of the market, we remain on track to meet this target.

Q
Asked by Chris Elmore
(Ogmore)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Probation: Wales
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps he is taking to improve the provision of probation services in rural locations in Wales.
A
Answered by: Lucy Frazer
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government set out its response to the consultation ‘Strengthening probation, building confidence’ on 16th May 2019.

This consultation response confirmed that we intend to bring the supervision of medium and low risk offenders, currently supervised by the Community Rehabilitation Company, into the National Probation Service across England and Wales. Recognising the unique circumstances of Wales, we are seeking to achieve this by the end of 2019 so that advice to court, risk and need assessments, sentence planning and managing enforcement and recall will all sit within a single organisation.

A number of market engagement events have been held in Wales to help inform the design of the future services and we are keen to work with a range of providers including both the private and voluntary sector. HMPPS in Wales work closely with the Welsh Government, the PCCs and other key stakeholders in Wales to ensure we capture how our services can best meet our shared objectives and align with existing arrangements. We are taking into account the landscape in Wales, including consideration of Welsh legislation, Welsh language and other priorities identified in our design work to date. In doing this, we will seek to reduce duplication in existing services and encourage partners to design, develop, commission and deliver in an integrated way.

NPS in Wales covers the whole of Wales, which has a mix of urban and rural areas creating different challenges and opportunities. There are five geographical local delivery units that are configured in a way to ensure that there is local oversight of issues such as rurality and an ability to respond to local challenges that may arise.

Q
(Morley and Outwood)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Telemedicine
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department is taking to improve the (a) range and (b) quality of digital NHS healthcare services offered to patients.
A
Answered by: Ms Nadine Dorries
Answered on: 09 September 2019

We have established a new unit – NHSX – to drive forward the digital transformation of health and social care, and give patients the tools to access online information and services safely and effectively.

We are providing a coreset of national digital services for people to transact with the health and care system and find information.

Innovators can build onto these services for a consistent, trusted and joined up digital experience.

NHSX will also define and mandate technology and design standards for digital services used within the NHS and social care, ensuring all publicly-funded source code is open by default.

Q
Asked by Dr Rupa Huq
(Ealing Central and Acton)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Legal Aid Scheme: Terrorism
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment the Government has made of the potential merits of automatically providing legal aid funding for (a) coroner's inquests and (b) other legal proceedings for British citizens who are victims of terrorist attacks.
A
Answered by: Wendy Morton
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Legal aid can be provided if the matter or issue in question is within scope of the legal aid scheme, as defined in the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO).

Legal aid is available for advice and assistance for all inquests, subject to a means and merits test. Legal aid funding for legal representation for a family, during an inquest hearing, is not in scope of LASPO. However, families are supported by coroners who can ask questions on their behalf to help them get the answers they need and we are developing a range of measures to improve this service further.

The Government recognises that for certain inquests, bereaved people may require representation; legal aid may therefore be available, through the Exceptional Case Funding scheme, if certain criteria are met:

(a) if a failure to provide such representation would breach, or likely risk a breach of, the government’s obligations under the European Convention of Human Rights; or

(b) where the Director of Legal Aid Casework (DLAC) makes a determination that there is a ‘wider public interest’ in legal representation being granted.

All individual case funding decisions are taken by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA). It is important that these decisions are, and are seen to be, free from political and Government influence.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Transport
Large Goods Vehicles: EU Countries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what criteria his Department uses to allocate European Council of Ministers for Transport international driving permits to UK road hauliers that have applied for them.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The criteria used for allocating international road haulage permits are set out in the International Road Transport Permits (EU Exit) Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/1204) and were designed to deliver on the principles of obtaining the greatest economic benefit from the permits, protecting the interests of UK hauliers, and applying a fair and consistent process.

Q
(Swansea East)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Courts
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, whether the working group established by the then Lord Chief Justice and then Lord Chancellor in January 2016 on problem solving courts has been stood down and its membership retired.
A
Answered by: Wendy Morton
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Problem-Solving Courts Working Group was asked to advise on the feasibility of pilot models and its planned work did not include an implementation stage. The group concluded the workstreams set out in its published terms of reference and has not been reconvened.

There remain barriers to testing or applying the problem-solving courts’ approach in a meaningful way, including upfront resource implications and the need for primary legislation to implement some of the models being proposed, as well as gaps in evidence. However, we are testing and applying “problem-solving approaches”, for example in the testbed sites for on the community sentence treatment requirement protocol and through our support for models applied in Family Drug and Alcohol Courts.

Grouped Questions: 284209
Q
Asked by Liz McInnes
(Heywood and Middleton)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Somalia: al Shabaab
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what assessment he has made of the presence of al-Shabaab in Somalia; and what support his Department is providing to the Somali Government to counter the threat of al-Shabaab.
A
Answered by: Andrew Stephenson
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Al-Shabaab represents a serious threat to security and stability in Somalia. The UK provides support to countering that threat through the provision of stipends and training to the African Union Mission in Somalia, which has been successful in driving al-Shabaab out of key urban centres. The UK also has an extensive programme of support to Somalia's security sector reform, which is helping Somalia take responsibility for its own national security, and ensuring it is threatened less by al-Shabaab. The UK also plays a leading role in upholding and strengthening the UN's Somalia sanctions regime that takes measures against those who seek to prevent a peaceful political process and threaten regional stability.

Q
(Bristol West)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for International Development
Angola: Droughts
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what steps his Department is taking to support people affected by recent droughts in Angola.
A
Answered by: Andrew Stephenson
Answered on: 09 September 2019

DFID is concerned about the effects of drought and food insecurity on people across Southern Africa and in Angola. Over one million Angolans are affected. Angola is a lower middle-income country, in sub-Saharan Africa it has the third largest economy and is the second largest oil producer. DFID does not have a bilateral programme in Angola, but we do support the people of Angola through centrally managed programmes and contributions to multilateral agencies. For example, in 2018 the UK provided over £300 million in core humanitarian funding to United Nations specialised agencies, the Red Cross movement and NGOs. As a result, the UK’s contribution is approximately 20 percent of the UN Central Emergency Response Fund that has been activated this year in Angola.

The UK is fully committed to tackling climate change and is playing a leading role in driving change around the world. Our regional programmes have supported the identification and planning of water infrastructure and livelihoods programmes to reduce vulnerability to drought including the preliminary design of water supply and sanitation projects that would build water security for more than 20,000 rural people in the Angolan Calai District.

Q
Asked by Luke Pollard
(Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Ministry of Defence
Game: Gun Sports
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will list any UK military establishments where driven grouse shooting has been permitted in the last 12 months.
A
Answered by: Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Grouse shooting is permitted on the Defence Estate only when a licence has been granted by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation. Grouse shooting licences have been issued at RAF Fylingdales and at Warcop and Catterick training areas, in the last 12 months.

Q
Asked by Helen Hayes
(Dulwich and West Norwood)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Treasury
Housing: Energy
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to provide financial incentives to encourage the retrofitting of existing homes and improve energy efficiency.
A
Answered by: Mr Simon Clarke
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Support for energy efficiency is available now through the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme, which requires energy companies to deliver heating and energy efficiency measures. This improves the ability of low income, fuel poor and vulnerable households to heat their homes.

In 2017 Government committed to extending support for home energy efficiency to 2028 at least at the current level of ECO funding. This will drive more than £6 billion of investment to improve home energy efficiency over the next decade.

Supplier obligations such as ECO have driven the installation of 2.5 million energy efficiency measures in around 2 million homes since 2013.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Transport
Large Goods Vehicles: EU Countries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how many applications his Department has received from UK hauliers for European Council of Ministers for Transport international driving permits; how many of those licences are available; and how many of those licences have been issued.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The UK had an allocation of 1,610 annual European Conference of Minister of Transport (ECMT) permits and 4,824 short-term permits available for hauliers to use in 2019.

In preparation for leaving the EU in March 2019, 2,145 UK goods vehicle operator licence holders applied for 11,976 ECMT annual permits. 774 annual permits were subsequently issued, with many hauliers declining to take up their allocation. As of 30 August 2019, ECMT permits for use in November and December 2019 are available to purchase.

If we leave the EU without a deal on 31 October 2019, most journeys will be allowed until at least 31 December 2019 under an EU contingency regulation. A small proportion of journeys are not covered by the regulation. The European Commission has on 4 September 2019 published a proposal to extend the regulation until 31 July 2020. The proposal, when combined with the ECMT system, would ensure that 99% of trips to the EU could continue to operate as they currently do for the first four months of the Regulation.

UK hauliers who need to transit the EU/EEA to third countries or who carry out three cross-trade movements within seven days can now apply for short-term permits via the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency’s digital service for journeys during November and December 2019.

The UK also has historic bilateral agreements and it is our view that the majority of them would revive in an absence of an EU wide measure.

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Children: Maintenance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many (a) passports and (b) driving licenses have been revoked as a result of a non-resident parent not paying Child Maintenance in each month since the Child Maintenance Service were given those powers.
A
Answered by: Mims Davies
Answered on: 09 September 2019

This information is not reported. However we do hold clerical data and can advise 15 driving licenses have been removed or suspended and 3 passports have been suspended.

The information regarding committal orders, or sanctions as they are called in the Child Maintenance Service, are reported in our published statistics and can be on found table 11 of the tables document on the attached link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-maintenance-service-august-2013-to-march-2019-experimental

We reported enforcement activities in our CSA statistics until September 2017 when we reduced the number of tables published because most CSA cases had been closed or had begun the Case Closure process. The last publication including the enforcement activities can be found on table 22 of the attached link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-support-agency-quarterly-summary-of-statistics-june-2017

Q
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Domestic Abuse: Sentencing
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that victims of domestic violence, following the sentencing of an offender, receive (1) the precise sentence outcome, (2) accurate and relevant information about the possible impact of a sentence, and (3) the date of an offenders bail and prison release, to ensure that safeguarding mechanisms can be put in place; and what plans they have to enable victims of such violence to appeal sentencing decisions.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Under the Code of Practice for Victim’s of Crime, all victims have the right to be notified of the offender’s sentence and receive a short explanation about the meaning and effect of the sentence. We committed in the Victims Strategy published last year to review the process for informing victims of offenders’ sentences and what they mean and we are currently consulting on proposals for revising the code, which will be followed by a consultation on a draft revised code.

The statutory National Probation Service Victim Contact Scheme is available to victims of violent and sexual offences, where the offender receives a sentence of 12 months or more. The Scheme provides victims with information and advice about the criminal justice process – including explaining the sentence to them and ensuring that they are informed of the offender’s release.

In such cases, victims also have the statutory right to request conditions that can be attached to the offender's release licence. These can include a no contact condition, and an exclusion zone covering areas where the victim lives, works, or travels too frequently. The offender risks being recalled to prison should they breach any of their licence conditions.

Offenders who have committed an eligible sexual or violent offence and sentenced to 12 months or more imprisonment will be managed under the Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA). Under MAPPA, the Prison, Probation and Police Services are required to work together to assess and manage the risks presented by such offenders. Thus, the MAPPA plan for managing the risk to such offenders must include measures to protect previous victims from further harm.

Additionally, Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences (MARACs) develop strategies to help and protect domestic abuse victims at high risk of murder or serious harm. Agencies including the Police, providers of probation services, health and child protection, as well as Independent Domestic Violence Advisers, share information and develop actions to protect the victim.

In respect of appealing sentencing decisions, the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme enables anyone, including victims, the ability to ask the Attorney General to consider referring sentences for certain offences which he believes to be unduly lenient, to the Court of Appeal. The offences covered by the scheme are indictable only offences that are heard in the Crown Court, and certain triable either way offences when heard in the Crown Court. The scheme has a statutory 28-day time limit for referrals to be made. The scheme ensures there is a route for victims, their families, and the public, to question sentences imposed by the court for certain cases.

If a case is referred, it will be a matter for the Court of Appeal to determine whether the sentence should remain as it is, be increased, or whether guidance should be issued for future cases.

Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Tommy Robinson
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Keen of Elie on 30 July (HL17224), which Department was responsible for reaching the decision that Stephen Yaxley-Lennon should be imprisoned in HMP Belmarsh; whether a Minister was involved in that decision; and if so, which.
A
Answered by: Lord Keen of Elie
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Judiciary oversee the Courts and Tribunal Services (CTS) in England and Wales and it is their responsibility to hand down sentencing following a successful conviction. Mr Yaxley-Lennon appeared before the Central Criminal Court (CCC) on 12 July 2019, where he was sentenced to 19 week imprisonment for committing contempt of court. It is the responsibility of HMP Belmarsh to serve the CCC in its function as a Core Local Prison and therefore in line with Court Committal Directions Mr Yaxley-Lennon was allocated to HMP Belmarsh.

Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Retail Trade
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to increase footfall in high street stores.
A
Answered on: 09 September 2019

As referred to in the answer to the recent similar question (HL16284), the Retail Sector is changing, we are committed to helping communities adapt and support the retail sector during this change. The Government and the retail sector recognise that action is needed to ensure the sector thrives. The creation of the Retail Sector Council demonstrates this commitment to the sector’s continued success.

My Rt hon Friend the Prime Minister recently announced an additional 50 towns will benefit from the £1 billion Future High Streets Fund, taking the total to over 100. The extension to the shortlist comes on the back of the £3.6 billion Towns Fund announced last month, which included an additional £325 million for the Future High Streets Fund, taking the overall Fund to £1 billion as the Government looks to drive forward local growth.

A number of other measures have already been taken to support our high streets, including the creation of the High Streets Task Force to support local leaders in delivering ambitious plans.

Through the planning system we are helping to support changes to high streets, making it easier for them to adapt, with a wider range of retail, residential and other uses. The Open Doors pilot in five town centres is bringing empty shops back into use, by opening these to community groups who are offering services to the most vulnerable in our communities.

Q
Asked by Chris Ruane
(Vale of Clwyd)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Prisoners: Mental Illness
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social care, what proportion of (a) children and young adults and (b) adults who have received custodial sentences have been diagnosed as having mental health problems in the latest period for which figures are available.
A
Answered by: Ms Nadine Dorries
Answered on: 09 September 2019

This information is not held in the format requested.

Q
Asked by Laura Smith
(Crewe and Nantwich)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Landlords: Registration
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment has he made of the potential merits of introducing a national landlord register for the private rented sector in England.
A
Answered by: Esther McVey
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government has no current plans to introduce a national landlord register, which could place an additional regulatory burden on landlords. The case would need to be made that such a register would drive up standards in the private rented sector. The Government is instead committed to improving the private rented sector by driving out criminal landlords and landlords who consistently neglect their responsibilities to provide safe and decent accommodation.

Local authorities already have a wide range of powers available to them including banning orders for the very worst offenders, civil penalties of up to £30,000 and a database of rogue landlords and property agents targeted at persistent and criminal offenders. To support the powers that local authorities already have we have provided £2.3 million in grant funding for local authorities to develop self-sustaining enforcement, released refreshed guidance for landlords, tenants and local authorities on their rights and responsibilities and carried out a review of selective licensing.

Q
Asked by Jim Shannon
(Strangford)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Remand in Custody: Long Term Unemployed People
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of placements for people on short-term remand that have been in long-term unemployment.
A
Answered by: Lucy Frazer
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Prisoners on remand are permitted to work while in prison. However, we do not collect data centrally relating to the number of prisoners remanded in custody who are in employment while in prison, or who were unemployed prior to being imprisoned. Sentenced prisoners can be released on temporary licence to attend places of work, provided they meet certain criteria.

Prisons must be places of rehabilitation, which will ultimately reduce reoffending. Our Education and Employment strategy sets out how we will transform our approach to ensure prisoners develop the skills they need to secure employment on release. We are engaging with employers to take on ex-prisoners via the New Futures Network (NFN) and have consulted on proposals to increase the opportunities available to prisoners to gain experience in real workplaces through Release on Temporary Licence.

Q
Asked by Laura Smith
(Crewe and Nantwich)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
NHS: Waiting Lists
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent steps the Government has taken to reduce NHS waiting times.
A
Answered by: Chris Skidmore
Answered on: 09 September 2019

NHS England’s Operational and Planning Guidance for 2019/20 sets out deliverables against key performance areas, including referral-to-treatment and urgent care, and the Government expects the National Health Service to deliver these actions set– in full – as key steps towards fully recovering performance against access standards.

In addition to this, under the NHS Long Term Plan, an extra £33.9 billion a year is being provided to improve and transform urgent and emergency care services, expand the amount of planned surgery year on year, cut long waits and reduce the waiting list.

The additional funding will support the NHS in achieving performance standards. More than that, it will also drive the reforms that deliver a better and more sustainable NHS with improved care for patients.

Q
Asked by David Hanson
(Delyn)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Sentencing: Females
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many women received an immediate custodial sentence for (a) less than six months and (b) six months or more in each of the four Police Force areas in Wales in (i) 2014, (ii) 2015, (iii) 2016, (iv) 2017 and (v) 2018 in each offence category.
A
Answered by: Lucy Frazer
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Ministry of Justice has published information on the number of adult females sentenced to immediate custody broken down by custodial sentence length, by Police Force Area and by offence group in the Court Outcomes by Police Force area data tool available here:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/804509/court-outcomes-by-PFA-2018.xlsx

Select ‘All’ in the Court Type filter.

Select ’02: Female’ in the Sex filter and ’03: Adults’ in the Age Group filter.

Select ’15: Immediate Custody’ in the Outcome filter.

In the pivot table, filter Police Force Area to Dyfed-Powys, Gwent, North Wales and South Wales.

In the pivot table field list, drag ‘Offence Group’ from Filters to Rows, beneath ‘Police Force Area’.

Custodial sentence lengths can be selected using the Custodial Sentence Length filter.

Police Force Areas provide breakdowns of where offences were dealt with (not where they were committed).

Q
Asked by Mr Steve Reed
(Croydon North)
[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: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Fire Prevention
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, whether he plans to bring forward legislative proposals on fire safety.
A
Answered by: Esther McVey
Answered on: 09 September 2019

This Government is committed to making sure that high-rise buildings are safe, and that residents feel safe in them, now and in the future. On 5 September, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government announced a series of measures to drive progress, including: £10 million per year to fund tailored building checks and inspections on all high risk residential buildings in England by 2021; a consultation on changes to the Building Regulations guidance on fire safety, primarily lowering the height threshold for sprinklers; and confirmation that the private sector remediation fund will open on 12 September, to fund the removal of Aluminium Composite Material cladding from eligible buildings in the private residential sector.

Our consultation, Building a Safer Future: proposals for reform of the building safety regulatory system closed on Wednesday 31 July 2019. We are now analysing the responses and will respond by the end of this year. We will then introduce legislation at the earliest opportunity, when parliamentary time allows.

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
[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: 03 September 2019
Department for Transport
Large Goods Vehicle Drivers: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the (a) average and (b) median waiting time is for a person whose heavy goods vehicle licence is subject to a medical review in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: George Freeman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The table below shows (a) the average time and (b) the median time it took the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency to issue a driving licence to Group 2 (lorry or bus) drivers who were subject to a medical investigation. Information on the median time for 2015 to 2017 is not available.

2015-16

2016-17

2017-18

2018-19

2019-20 (to 3 Sept)

(a) Average time days

61

43

37

33

34

(b)Median time

n/a

n/a

15

17

16

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
[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: 03 September 2019
Department for Transport
Large Goods Vehicle Drivers: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, in what circumstances would the DVLA seek a medical review of a person’s heavy goods vehicle license.
A
Answered by: George Freeman
Answered on: 09 September 2019

All drivers are required by law to notify the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) at any time about the onset or worsening of a medical condition affecting safe driving. When a driver first applies for a Group 2 (lorry or bus) licence they must submit a medical report regarding their fitness to drive which must be completed by a doctor.

Group 2 licences are valid for five years. At each renewal, drivers under the age of 45 must make a declaration about whether or not they suffer from a medical condition that may affect their fitness to drive. Drivers renewing their driving entitlement at the age of 45 and over must include a medical report completed by a doctor. At the age of 65, renewals are required annually and must be supported by a doctor.

The DVLA will investigate a person’s fitness to drive if an application, report or a third party notification indicates that they may have a medical condition that affects safe driving.

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Post Office: Income
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much income has been generated by Post Office Ltd through the provision of (a) driving licences, (b) vehicle registration, (c) excise duty collection and (d) international driving permits for each year in which information is available.
A
Answered by: Kelly Tolhurst
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government recognises the critical role that post offices play in communities and for small businesses across the UK. This is why the Government committed to safeguard the post office network and protect existing rural services. The overall number of post offices across the UK remains at its most stable in decades with over 11,500 branches thanks to significant Government investment of over £2 billion since 2010.

While the Government sets the strategic direction for the Post Office, it allows the company the commercial freedom to deliver this strategy as an independent business. The income generated for specific services is an operational matter for the Post Office Limited. I have therefore asked Nick Read, Chief Executive of Post Office Limited, to write to the hon Member on this matter. A copy of his reply will be placed in the libraries of the House.

Q
Asked by Philip Davies
(Shipley)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Police: Cameras
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, if he will ensure that courts view any body worn footage available in cases (a) of assaulting an emergency worker and (b) involving a police officer before the offender is sentenced; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government is committed to ensuring that emergency workers on the front line have the full protection of the law.

Evidence obtained from body worn video footage is admissible in court and, where available, can be used to support the prosecution’s case during trial.

If a defendant enters a guilty plea, the prosecution can invite the court to view footage taken from a body worn camera, alongside any victim impact statements, before sentencing. The court would have full discretion in determining whether to accept or reject the request.

The Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act 2018 doubled the maximum penalty for those who assault emergency workers from six to 12 months in prison. Under the Act a court must also consider, for a range of offences, the fact that the offence was committed against an emergency worker as an aggravating factor meriting a more severe sentence.

Q
Asked by Philip Davies
(Shipley)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Remand in Custody
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, in (a) how many and (b) what proportion of cases involving common assault was a defendant remanded in custody prior to their trial in each year since 2013.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Information on the number of defendants dealt with for common assault and their remand status at different points of court proceedings can be found in the “Remands: Magistrates’ Court data tool” and the “Remands: Crown Court data tool” at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/criminal-justice-system-statistics-quarterly-december-2018

To obtain the requested data, carry out the following steps:

  • In both tools filter ‘Offence’ for: “105 Common assault and battery”
  • In both tools filter ‘Remand status’ as required – for remand status prior to trial in the magistrates’ court, use the “Remand status with Police” variable
  • In both tools filter ‘Convicted / not convicted’ as required
  • In both tolls filter ‘Sentenced / not sentenced’ as required
  • In the Crown Court tool filter ‘Plea’ as required (plea is only available at Crown Court)
  • In both tools filter ‘Outcome’ for “Immediate custody” as required
  • For calculations for defendants dealt with entirely at the magistrates’ court, filter ‘Outcome’ to exclude the following: “Failure to appear”, “Committed for trial” and “Committed for sentence”
  • For calculations for defendants dealt with at the Crown Court, filter ‘Outcome’ to exclude: “Failure to appear”.
Grouped Questions: 286164 | 286165
Q
Asked by Philip Davies
(Shipley)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Remand in Custody
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, in (a) how many and (b) what proportion of cases involving common assault was a defendant found guilty or pleaded guilty after being remanded in custody prior to their trial in each year since 2013.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Information on the number of defendants dealt with for common assault and their remand status at different points of court proceedings can be found in the “Remands: Magistrates’ Court data tool” and the “Remands: Crown Court data tool” at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/criminal-justice-system-statistics-quarterly-december-2018

To obtain the requested data, carry out the following steps:

  • In both tools filter ‘Offence’ for: “105 Common assault and battery”
  • In both tools filter ‘Remand status’ as required – for remand status prior to trial in the magistrates’ court, use the “Remand status with Police” variable
  • In both tools filter ‘Convicted / not convicted’ as required
  • In both tolls filter ‘Sentenced / not sentenced’ as required
  • In the Crown Court tool filter ‘Plea’ as required (plea is only available at Crown Court)
  • In both tools filter ‘Outcome’ for “Immediate custody” as required
  • For calculations for defendants dealt with entirely at the magistrates’ court, filter ‘Outcome’ to exclude the following: “Failure to appear”, “Committed for trial” and “Committed for sentence”
  • For calculations for defendants dealt with at the Crown Court, filter ‘Outcome’ to exclude: “Failure to appear”.
Grouped Questions: 286163 | 286165
Q
Asked by Philip Davies
(Shipley)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Crimes against the Person: Sentencing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, in (a) how many and (b) what proportion of cases involving common assault was a defendant sentenced to a term of imprisonment after being remanded in custody prior to their trial in each year since 2013.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Information on the number of defendants dealt with for common assault and their remand status at different points of court proceedings can be found in the “Remands: Magistrates’ Court data tool” and the “Remands: Crown Court data tool” at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/criminal-justice-system-statistics-quarterly-december-2018

To obtain the requested data, carry out the following steps:

  • In both tools filter ‘Offence’ for: “105 Common assault and battery”
  • In both tools filter ‘Remand status’ as required – for remand status prior to trial in the magistrates’ court, use the “Remand status with Police” variable
  • In both tools filter ‘Convicted / not convicted’ as required
  • In both tolls filter ‘Sentenced / not sentenced’ as required
  • In the Crown Court tool filter ‘Plea’ as required (plea is only available at Crown Court)
  • In both tools filter ‘Outcome’ for “Immediate custody” as required
  • For calculations for defendants dealt with entirely at the magistrates’ court, filter ‘Outcome’ to exclude the following: “Failure to appear”, “Committed for trial” and “Committed for sentence”
  • For calculations for defendants dealt with at the Crown Court, filter ‘Outcome’ to exclude: “Failure to appear”.
Grouped Questions: 286163 | 286164
Q
Asked by Philip Davies
(Shipley)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Sentencing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, in what proportion of adjudications additional days were added to a prisoner's sentence; how many days were added and for what reasons, in each year since 2010.
A
Answered by: Lucy Frazer
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The prisoner discipline system upholds justice in prisons and ensures incidents of prisoner rule-breaking have consequences. In cases which the prison governor deems the rule-breaking to be sufficiently serious an Independent Adjudicator, appointed by the Chief Magistrate, can attend a prison to award additional days to the prisoner’s custodial time left to serve.

Information on the number of occasions on which additional days were awarded to prisoners by offence is publicly available at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/offender-management-statistics-quarterly

For ease, both the number of awards and the number of days that were added to a prisoner’s custodial time, in each year since 2011 is shown in the table below. The information requested for 2010 is not provided due to data quality issues:

The Number of awards where additional days were given and total number of days of additional days, 2011 – 2018, England and Wales Can be found in the attached Table.

Table (Image, 90.49 KB)
Q
(North East Hampshire)
[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: 03 September 2019
Attorney General
Sentencing
Commons
To ask the Attorney General, if he will extend the unduly lenient sentence scheme to cover (a) all serious crime cases and (b) cases tried at magistrates' courts.
A
Answered by: Mr Geoffrey Cox
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The ULS scheme remains an important avenue for victims, family members and the public to ensure justice is delivered in the most serious cases.

Since its inception in 1989, the ULS scheme has been extended to include additional offences, including some sexual offences, and offences involving child cruelty and modern slavery. In 2017 the Government re-committed in our manifesto to look at further extension and, as a result, the scheme was extended in 2017, and again in 2018, to include a number of terror-related offences.

We continue to look carefully at the ambit of the scheme.

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
[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 September 2019
Department for Work and Pensions
Children: Maintenance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many times the Child Maintenance Service has used its power to disqualify non-compliant paying parents from holding or obtaining a (a) passport and (b) driving licence.
A
Answered by: Mims Davies
Answered on: 09 September 2019

This information is not reported. However we do hold clerical data and can advise 15 driving licenses have been removed or suspended and 3 passports have been suspended.

The information regarding committal orders, or sanctions as they are called in the Child Maintenance Service, are reported in our published statistics and can be on found table 11 of the tables document on the attached link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-maintenance-service-august-2013-to-march-2019-experimental

We reported enforcement activities in our CSA statistics until September 2017 when we reduced the number of tables published because most CSA cases had been closed or had begun the Case Closure process. The last publication including the enforcement activities can be found on table 22 of the attached link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-support-agency-quarterly-summary-of-statistics-june-2017

Q
(Coventry 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: 04 September 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
General Practitioners: Standards
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent estimate he has made of the average waiting time for an appointment to see a GP in (a) England and Wales and (b) Coventry.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The most recent data on the time between booking an appointment with a general practice and having the appointment (in days) for Coventry and Rugby Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as well as for England are presented in the following table as the average over the 12 months from August 2018 to July 2019.

The data is taken from the NHS Digital publication ‘Appointments in General Practice’. This is a new experimental data collection which is still being refined and improved.

It should be noted that the ‘time from booking to appointment’ refers only to the time elapsed between the successful booking of an appointment and the appointment actually taking place. The data does not take into consideration that many patients will be appropriately booking ahead as part of the continuity of care they receive for long-term conditions.

Coventry and Rugby CCG

England

Distribution of average time elapsed between booking an appointment and the appointment taking place, August 2018 to July 2019

Same Day

47%

42%

1 Day

7%

7%

2 to 7 Days

21%

20%

8 to 14 Days

12%

14%

15 to 21 Days

6%

8%

22 or more

7%

10%

Total

100.0%

100.0%


Notes:

  1. There are several factors that drive the time from a booking to an appointment. This includes appointment availability at the practice, patient availability, the urgency of the appointment and general practitioner (GP) advice.
  2. The data does not differentiate between emergency and routine appointments in general practice.
  3. The data does not include any information about the patients or clinical information.
  4. The data in the response includes appointments with all healthcare professional types, including GPs and other practice staff.
  5. Not all practices in England are included in the appointments in general practice publication, meaning the total number of appointments is not known.
  6. Same day and next day bookings are of particular interest so are presented here separately. Further bookings are presented grouped by weeks.
  7. The number of appointments that have already happened is provided as recorded in participating practices in England. The data presented only contains information which was captured on the GP practice systems. This limits the activity reported on and does not represent all work happening within a primary care setting.

Q
(Barnsley East)
Asked on: 04 September 2019
Ministry of Justice
Dangerous Driving: Sentencing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, whether he plans to (a) create an offence of causing serious injury by careless driving and (b) increase the maximum penalties for causing death by dangerous driving.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 09 September 2019

I refer the honourable member to my response of 3 September to Question 282465.

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