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 2019 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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UIN

Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
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Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
NHS: Protective Clothing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has made an assessment of the viability of reallocating funding to the production and distribution of additional personal protective equipment to treat patients suffering severe covid-19 symptoms in advance of the infection rate peak; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 26 March 2020

The Chancellor created a £5 billion contingency fund to ensure National Health Service and public services have the resources they need, including personal protective equipment and has been clear that the NHS will get whatever funding it needs to respond to the COVID-19.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is looking for organisations who can support in the supply of ventilators and ventilator components across the United Kingdom as part of the Government’s response to COVID-19.

Grouped Questions: 28588
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
NHS: Medical Equipment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he has made an assessment of the viability of reallocating funding to the production and distribution of additional medical devices to treat patients suffering severe covid-19 symptoms in advance of the infection rate peak; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 26 March 2020

The Chancellor created a £5 billion contingency fund to ensure National Health Service and public services have the resources they need, including personal protective equipment and has been clear that the NHS will get whatever funding it needs to respond to the COVID-19.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is looking for organisations who can support in the supply of ventilators and ventilator components across the United Kingdom as part of the Government’s response to COVID-19.

Grouped Questions: 28587
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
Coronavirus: Health Services
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department plans to requisition privately-owned healthcare facilities in the event that more facilities are required for patients diagnosed with covid-19.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 26 March 2020

The Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement have worked with the independent sector to increase capacity and resource within the National Health Service, adding around 8000 beds and 20,000 clinical staff. This will ensure that more facilities are available for patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

Grouped Questions: 28594
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
Coronavirus: Health Services
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what powers he has to requisition privately-owned healthcare facilities in the event that more facilities are required for patients diagnosed with covid-19.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 26 March 2020

The Department and NHS England and NHS Improvement have worked with the independent sector to increase capacity and resource within the National Health Service, adding around 8000 beds and 20,000 clinical staff. This will ensure that more facilities are available for patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

Grouped Questions: 28593
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 25 March 2020
Department for Transport
Railways: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of ceasing food services on trains while ensuring that all food service staff are retained on full pay during the covid-19 outbreak.
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Kashmir: Detainees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent estimate he has made of the number of people in Kashmir that have been (a) placed in preventative custody and (b) detained under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act 1978 by the Indian authorities since August 2019.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 23 March 2020

According to Indian Home Ministry records dated 29 February, 7357 people have been taken into preventative custody since 5 August 2019. The Home Ministry records state that 451 persons are currently under preventative detention, which includes 396 people detained under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act. We have raised our concerns about the ongoing detentions with the Government of India.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Kashmir: Detainees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent estimate he has made of the number of people in Kashmir that are currently (a) in preventative custody and (b) detained under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act 1978 by the Indian authorities.
A
Answered by: Nigel Adams
Answered on: 23 March 2020

According to Indian Home Ministry records dated 29 February, 7357 people have been taken into preventative custody since 5 August 2019. The Home Ministry records state that 451 persons are currently under preventative detention, which includes 396 people detained under the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act. We have raised our concerns about the ongoing detentions with the Government of India.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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: 18 March 2020
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Consumer Goods: Prices
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the adequacy of the powers available to officials to ensure that prices charged by vendors for basic household goods do not rise unreasonably during temporary local shortages.
A
Answered by: Paul Scully
Answered on: 23 March 2020

The Competition and Markets Authority issued a public statement on 5 March to reassure businesses and consumers that it is monitoring retail practices during the coronavirus outbreak and will take direct enforcement action, or advise the Government to take additional measures, if it is required.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 12 March 2020
Home Office
Police: Biometrics
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will make an assessment of the implications for her policies of the recommendation by the Equality and Human Rights Commission of the 12 March 2019 that the use by the police of automated facial recognition technology should cease until independent impact assessments and consultations have been carried out.
A
Answered by: Kit Malthouse
Answered on: 20 March 2020

How the police use technology to protect the public is an operational matter for them. The Government supports the police use of new technologies like facial recognition to identify and locate criminals, in accordance with the law. The High Court has ruled there is a clear and sufficient legal framework, including the Equality Act, for police use of live facial recognition in the UK.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
Coronavirus: Intensive Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department plans to co-ordinate the conversion of hospital facilities into specialist areas to treat large numbers of patients needing intensive care as a result of covid-19, in advance of the infection rate peak.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 18 March 2020
Holding answer received on 17 March 2020

NHS England has an operating Framework for Managing the Response to Pandemic Influenza. It sets out the roles, responsibilities and functions of NHS England in preparing for and responding to an influenza pandemic. It is intended to complement and support existing plans, policies and arrangements. More information can be found at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/nhs-england-pandmic-influenza-operating-framework-v2.pdf

Extensive advice and guidance on COVID-19 has already been produced by Public Health England (PHE), the National Health Service and others, some of which will be of direct relevance to people who misuse drugs and alcohol, and those in specialist treatment for drug or alcohol misuse and dependence. Additional targeted information is being provided in specific settings, including prisons and approved premises. These populations may have particular vulnerabilities and needs that are considered within this guidance, alongside other populations. PHE cascaded this information directly to local authority commissioners on 14 February 2020. The Government will continue to carefully monitor whether further resources need to be made available to protect this vulnerable cohort.

Grouped Questions: 28584
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
Coronavirus: Intensive Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department has plans to construct temporary intensive care facilities prior to the peak of the covid-19 infection to treat people as a result of that infection.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 18 March 2020
Holding answer received on 17 March 2020

NHS England has an operating Framework for Managing the Response to Pandemic Influenza. It sets out the roles, responsibilities and functions of NHS England in preparing for and responding to an influenza pandemic. It is intended to complement and support existing plans, policies and arrangements. More information can be found at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/nhs-england-pandmic-influenza-operating-framework-v2.pdf

Extensive advice and guidance on COVID-19 has already been produced by Public Health England (PHE), the National Health Service and others, some of which will be of direct relevance to people who misuse drugs and alcohol, and those in specialist treatment for drug or alcohol misuse and dependence. Additional targeted information is being provided in specific settings, including prisons and approved premises. These populations may have particular vulnerabilities and needs that are considered within this guidance, alongside other populations. PHE cascaded this information directly to local authority commissioners on 14 February 2020. The Government will continue to carefully monitor whether further resources need to be made available to protect this vulnerable cohort.

Grouped Questions: 28583
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
NHS: Medical Equipment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his Department has made of the adequacy of the current NHS (a) stock and (b) supply chain for medical devices required to treat patients with severe covid-19 infection symptoms.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 17 March 2020

The Department has well-established procedures to deal with supply problems affecting all medical products and supplies, including medicines, medical devices and personal protective equipment regardless of the cause, and work closely with industry, the National Health Service and others in the supply chain to help prevent shortages and to ensure that the risks to patients are minimised.

A product supply response group has been set up to manage supply of products and to support any response to shortages required for the COVID-19 outbreak. The group is also considering the potential mid to long-term impacts of the outbreak globally. The Department is communicating with all stakeholders, including Royal Colleges, charities, patient groups, the NHS, the adult social care sector, and the devolved nations, and will continue to keep these stakeholders updated as the situation progresses.

Personal protective equipment has been issued to general practices since 9 March the packs include facemasks, aprons and gloves.

Grouped Questions: 28586
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
NHS: Protective Clothing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment his department has made of the adequacy of current NHS (a) stock and (b) supply chain for personal protective equipment required to treat patients with covid-19.
A
Answered by: Jo Churchill
Answered on: 17 March 2020

The Department has well-established procedures to deal with supply problems affecting all medical products and supplies, including medicines, medical devices and personal protective equipment regardless of the cause, and work closely with industry, the National Health Service and others in the supply chain to help prevent shortages and to ensure that the risks to patients are minimised.

A product supply response group has been set up to manage supply of products and to support any response to shortages required for the COVID-19 outbreak. The group is also considering the potential mid to long-term impacts of the outbreak globally. The Department is communicating with all stakeholders, including Royal Colleges, charities, patient groups, the NHS, the adult social care sector, and the devolved nations, and will continue to keep these stakeholders updated as the situation progresses.

Personal protective equipment has been issued to general practices since 9 March the packs include facemasks, aprons and gloves.

Grouped Questions: 28585
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Armed Forces: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether his Department is preparing to train service personnel to perform essential (a) public health, (b) nursing and (c) civil protection functions in the event that work forces are depleted or reassigned during the peak period of covid-19 infection.
A
Answered by: James Heappey
Answered on: 17 March 2020

Defence has a number of existing contingency operations to provide support to the civil authorities, including the Police and Her Majesty's Prisons and Probation Service. In light of the likely additional call on military assistance to mitigate COVID-19 related staff absence in civil authorities, Defence is reviewing its plans, training and readiness in order to support additional requests.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 05 March 2020
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: HIV Infection
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, whether her Department categorises all deaths following HIV infection as preventable; and how those deaths are recognised in her Department's policies on ending preventable deaths.
A
Answered by: Wendy Morton
Answered on: 12 March 2020

Ending new HIV infections and preventing AIDS-related deaths is a critical part of the UK government’s renewed focus on ending preventable deaths of mothers, new-borns, and children by 2030.

The UK is a world leader in efforts to end the AIDS epidemic. Last year the UK made a £1.4 billion pledge to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria for the 6th replenishment covering 2020 to 2022. This supports the commitment to end the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030. In 2018 alone, the Global Fund provided 18.9 million people with treatment in 2018 and protected nearly 700,000 babies from being infected by their mothers.

We are working to expand access to treatment, while reducing new infections, particularly among adolescent girls, women, and other marginalised populations, who face stigma and discrimination.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
[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 March 2020
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: Health Services
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to her Department's press release entitled, UK will step up efforts to end preventable deaths of mothers, new-born babies and children in the developing world by 2030, published in October 2019, whether preventable (a) HIV acquisitions and (b) AIDS related deaths will be included in those priorities.
A
Answered by: Wendy Morton
Answered on: 12 March 2020

Ending new HIV infections and preventing AIDS-related deaths is a critical part of the UK government’s renewed focus on ending preventable deaths of mothers, new-borns, and children by 2030.

The UK is a world leader in efforts to end the AIDS epidemic. Last year the UK made a £1.4 billion pledge to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, TB and Malaria for the 6th replenishment covering 2020 to 2022. This supports the commitment to end the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030. In 2018 alone, the Global Fund provided 18.9 million people with treatment in 2018 and protected nearly 700,000 babies from being infected by their mothers.

We are working to expand access to treatment, while reducing new infections, particularly among adolescent girls, women, and other marginalised populations, who face stigma and discrimination.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 March 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
London Ambulance Service
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will meet with representatives of (a) the London Ambulance Service and (b) the Patients’ Forum for the London Ambulance Service to ensure that the London Ambulance Service is maintaining (i) effective transparency and (ii) an engaged consultative relationship with patient representative bodies.
A
Answered by: Edward Argar
Answered on: 11 March 2020

The London Ambulance Service remains committed to working with patient representative groups and the wider public, to further improve the care it delivers for Londoners.

I will meet with the Ambulance Trust and the Patients’ Forum to discuss the continuation of their partnership.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 28 January 2020
Cabinet Office
Voting Rights: EU Nationals
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the Government plans to bring forward legislative proposals to amend section 2(1)(c) of the Representation of the People Act 1983.
A
Corrected answer by: Chloe Smith
Corrected on: 28 February 2020
An error has been identified in the written answer given on 05 February 2020.
The correct answer should have been:

The Government has no plans to change the voting age, having been elected on a manifesto commitment to retain the voting age at 18.

The entitlement of resident Commonwealth and Irish citizens to vote reflects our close historical ties with Commonwealth countries and the reciprocal arrangements UK has with Ireland. The Government has no plans to alter these rights.

In relation to relevant citizens of the Union, I refer the Hon member to the answer which I gave to PQ 1802 on 29 January 2020.

The Scottish Parliament is responsible for the franchise for local elections in Scotland. The Welsh Assembly is responsible for the franchise for local elections in Wales.

A
Answered by: Chloe Smith
Answered on: 05 February 2020

The Government has no plans to change the voting age, having been elected on a manifesto commitment to retain the voting age at 18.

The entitlement of resident Commonwealth and Irish citizens to vote reflects our close historical ties with Commonwealth countries and the reciprocal arrangements UK has with Ireland. The Government has no plans to alter these rights.

In relation to relevant citizens of the Union, I refer the Hon member to the answer which I gave to PQ 1802 on 29 January 2020.

The Scottish Parliament is responsible for the franchise for local elections in Scotland. The Welsh Assembly is responsible for the franchise for local elections in Wales.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Syria: Military Intervention
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure compliance with the UN Security Council resolutions on the violence affecting civilians in Idlib, Northern Syria.
A
Answered by: Dr Andrew Murrison
Answered on: 11 February 2020

We are deeply concerned about the situation in Idlib, north-west Syria, as a result of the ongoing offensive by the Syrian regime and Russia. We are calling on all parties to respect previously agreed ceasefires and their obligations under International Humanitarian Law, and to abide by relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, particularly UNSCR 2254, which calls for a nationwide ceasefire as part of a political process to end the conflict.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Department for Education
Homicide: Young People
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many and what proportion of homicides of people aged 16-24 have been followed by (a) a serious case review, (b) a child safeguarding practice review, (c) an independent investigation report and (d) a safeguarding adult review in each of the last four years.
A
Answered by: Michelle Donelan
Answered on: 11 February 2020

The information requested is not held by the Department for Education.

Local authorities are statutorily obliged to inform the National Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel of all incidents of serious harm or death of a child under 18 years old where abuse and neglect is known or suspected. The National Panel shares this data with the Department for Education.

Information collected and held by the department does not distinguish ‘homicide’ as a reporting category.

The attached table sets out over the last 4 years: the number of child deaths notified as serious incidents, the number of Serious Case Reviews that local areas have stated will be initiated and the number of local child Safeguarding Practice Reviews that local areas have stated will be initiated.

11524_table (Word Document, 49 KB)
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