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: 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)
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Department of Health and Social Care
Mental Health Services: Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will make an assessment of the effect of funding inequalities between areas on (a) NHS Newham clinical commissioning group, (b) North-East London sustainability and transformation partnership and (c) other areas as set out on the Royal College of Psychiatrists Mental Health Watch website.
A
Answered by: Ms Nadine Dorries
Answered on: 11 February 2020

As part of the NHS Long Term Plan we have committed at least a further £2.3 billion a year to mental health services by 2023/24 meaning that spend on mental health will be growing faster than the overall National Health Service budget.

Based on core weighted population, an indicative allocation of £163.7m in clinical commissioning group (CCG) baseline investment and indicative allocation of £271.3 million in transformation funding will be made to North East London Sustainability and Transformation Partnership between 2019/20 to 2023/24, with Newham CCG modelled as receiving around 17.5% of this funding.

The Mental Health Investment Standard requires CCGs to increase the amount spent on mental health by at least as much as their overall budget increases. For the first time, in 2018/19 all CCGs met this level of investment.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Bovine Tuberculosis: Disease Control
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many Animal and Plant Health Agency assurance checks are conducted in each badger cull zone to determine the numbers of active setts in those areas (a) before and (b) after annual culls take place; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: George Eustice
Answered on: 11 February 2020

All cull companies are instructed to carry out a thorough sett survey programme in the spring before each cull in their area. Animal and Plant Health Agency surveyors then carry out a Quality Assurance check on at least 5% of the land parcels at random in areas between their first and second cull.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Non-native Species
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent evidence her Department has of the effect of invasive non-native species since the publication the 2010 technical report entitled The Economic Cost of Invasive Non-Native Species on Great Britain by Frances Williams et al.
A
Answered by: Rebecca Pow
Answered on: 10 February 2020

The evidence that invasive species are having an ever greater impact on biodiversity, globally and domestically, is undeniable. The 2019 Environmental Audit Committe report, developed using a wide range of evidence sources, highlighted the risks these species pose to native biodiversity. It also called for greater levels of prevention, management, control and public awareness regarding invasive species and their negative effects on the environment.

Defra is also in receipt of the 2019 UN global assessment report on biodiversity which concluded that “the numbers of invasive species per country have risen by around 70 per cent since 1970” and that “invasive non-native species have contributed to 40 per cent of the animal extinctions that have happened in the last 400 years and are the biggest threat to biodiversity on islands”. Defra is aware that the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services global assessment report on biodiversity and ecosystem services found that invasive species were one of the top five direct drivers for changes to nature and were included in a list with climate change and pollution.

Reports such as “The Economic Cost of Invasive Non-Native Species on Great Britain” remain highly relevant, as the impact of invasive non-native species (INNS) has not decreased since the report was published. Defra recently however commissioned a scoping study aimed at documenting the current evidence in relation to the ecosystem service impacts of INNS in the UK. This study[1] sought to determine the feasibility of expanding on the 2010 report by estimating natural capital costs incurred by INNS, alongside the direct economic costs which the 2010 report focused upon.

[1] Scoping study: ecosystem services and natural capital costs of invasive non-native species in the UK - BE0162 http://randd.defra.gov.uk/Default.aspx?Menu=Menu&Module=More&Location=None&Completed=1&ProjectID=20315

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement and Permitting) Order 2019
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what consultations her Department has undertaken on the implementation of the Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement and Permitting) Order 2019.
A
Answered by: Rebecca Pow
Answered on: 10 February 2020

Defra has undertaken two formal consultations relating to the Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement and Permitting) Order 2019. They were: “Invasive Non-native Species: Tackling Invasive Non-native Species – A new enforcement regime” and “Management measures for widely spread Invasive Alien Species (IAS) in England and Wales”. These consultations ran from from 9 January 2018 to 3 April 2018 and 18 July 2019 to 12 September 2019 respectively.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Squirrels
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will amend the Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement and Permitting) Order 2019 to permit the licensing of vet practices and wildlife hospitals to release grey squirrels in areas where they pose no risk to native squirrel populations.
A
Answered by: Rebecca Pow
Answered on: 10 February 2020

Releasing grey squirrels back into the environment, even in areas away from red squirrels, would encourage a wide range of further negative impacts associated with this species towards other native species, forestry assets and national parks.

The release of grey squirrels can only be allowed as a management measure under the Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement and Permitting) Order 2019 if it contributes to the population control, eradication or containment of the species. The Government will, therefore, not be updating this Order to permit the release of grey squirrels by veterinary practices or wildlife hospitals. The devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland do not allow grey squirrels to be kept or released. The Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement and Permitting) Order, which came into effect on 1 December 2019, thus brought England in line with the rest of the United Kingdom.

Any grey squirrel that requires medical attention can be taken to a licensed facility where it can remain for the rest of its natural life.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Department for International Development
Syria: Overseas Aid
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what recent steps his Department has taken to help tackle the (a) humanitarian crisis, (b) effects of aerial bombardment, (c) mass internal displacement during winter conditions and (d) destruction of medical and educational facilities in Idlib, Northern Syria.
A
Answered by: Dr Andrew Murrison
Answered on: 10 February 2020

We are gravely concerned about escalating Syrian Regime and Russian military action and its humanitarian impact in Idlib. As of 6 February, the UN reports that 586,000 people have been displaced since 1 December 2019 and many more are at risk of imminent further displacement.

This financial year DFID has already allocated £103 million to organisations delivering aid cross-border from Turkey primarily into North West Syria, including Idlib. This has helped to provide hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people with food, clean water, shelter, and healthcare including psychosocial support.

Given the rapidly deteriorating conditions in North West Syria, we have put options in place to increase our funding further to address the pressing needs of those displaced by the conflict. We have provided funding to response partners including the UN to preposition essential supplies to support innocent families and civilians displaced by conflict and are supporting all our partners to respond to this humanitarian crisis.

I visited Turkey on 5-6 February and discussed the crisis in North West Syria with UN agencies and humanitarian NGOs, as well as with Turkish authorities. DFID partners on the ground are working tirelessly to provide aid to those affected by the military offensive. We continue to provide education assistance and support healthcare facilities affected by the recent violence.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Hunting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many deer are shot in England and Wales each year; how many of those deer are shot cleanly the first time; and how many need to be dispatched with a second or further shot; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Rebecca Pow
Answered on: 10 February 2020

Defra does not hold this data regarding the culling of deer. The Deer Act 1991 provides a robust framework for the protection of deer, including the welfare of shot deer.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Bovine Tuberculosis: Disease Control
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the cost to the public purse is of each badger cull zone; and what estimate she has made of the economic cost-benefit of each of those areas to date; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: George Eustice
Answered on: 10 February 2020

Bovine TB is one of the greatest animal health threats to the UK and the disease costs the public over £100 million a year, with the cost to the farming industry around £50 million a year.

The Government badger cull costs are published annually on the GOV.UK website and can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/bovine-tb-government-badger-control-costs.

The 2019 costs are still being calculated and will be published later this year. Costs are not broken down by cull zone.

The most recent badger control policy value for money analysis, carried out in 2019, estimates the Net Present Value i.e. the monetised benefits of Badger Control over 11 years at £1.08 million per area.

Further information can be found on GOV.UK at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/bovine-tb-badger-control-policy-value-for-money-analysis.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Bovine Tuberculosis: Disease Control
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department plans to continue expanding the boundary of the minimum infected area in Cumbria in the event that the Animal and Plant Health Agency continues finding badgers outside that area which are infected with TB; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: George Eustice
Answered on: 10 February 2020

In Area 32-Cumbria the cull area is made up of two parts, the minimum infected area and the outer cull area. The minimum infected area is based on:

  1. the location of the infected badgers, associated farms and contiguous breakdown areas, plus a radius of the estimated average social group territory based on main sett distribution; and

  1. the location of another farm with a TB breakdown very strongly suspected on epidemiological grounds to be badger related.

Therefore the boundary could be expanded if evidence shows that infected badgers are found outside the boundary, as it was in 2019.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Bovine Tuberculosis: Cumbria
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, for what reasons the original planning for the minimum infected area (MIA) in Cumbria did not include barriers to prevent badgers from passing to and from the MIA; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: George Eustice
Answered on: 10 February 2020

Natural barriers to badger movement were used, as far as practical, for the outer boundary of Area 32 to minimise the risk of possible perturbation effects. Area 32 is made up of two parts, the minimum infected area and the outer cull area. The outer cull area acts as a buffer between the minimum infected area, where the majority of infection is located, and those outside of the cull area.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 04 February 2020
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Bovine Tuberculosis: Cumbria
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the Government has made an assessment of the potential merits of a buffer zone around the minimum infected area in Cumbria for the vaccination of badgers, and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: George Eustice
Answered on: 10 February 2020

A ‘buffer zone’ currently operates around the minimum infected area in Area 32-Cumbria; this is referred to as the outer cull area (OCA). Both the minimum infected area and the outer cull area together make up the intervention area.

The OCA is based on estimated average badger social group territory size surrounding the minimum infected area, to take into account the possibility that infection may have already spread in the badger population. The boundary was adjusted to adhere to natural barriers to badger movement as far as practical to minimise the risk of possible perturbation effects.

The results of testing of badgers from the 2019 cull are still being analysed. When completed they will inform decisions as to what type of badger control method should be applied in 2020.

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
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.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 03 February 2020
Home Office
Drugs: Organised Crime
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for (a) Justice, (b) Education and (c) Housing, Communities and Local Government on using the findings of (i) serious case reviews following the homicides of young people, (ii) child safeguarding practice reviews, (iii) independent investigation reports and (iv) safeguarding adult reviews to help prevent violence linked to county lines child criminal exploitation.
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 23 January 2020
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Burma: Rohingya
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what support he will provide for the enforcement of the International Court of Justice’s provisional measures indicated in the case Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (The Gambia v. Myanmar).
A
Answered by: Mrs Heather Wheeler
Answered on: 30 January 2020

We have welcomed the International Court of Justice's decision on provisional measures, which was clear that Myanmar must do more to protect the Rohingya. We urge Myanmar to comply with the provisional measures in full. We are exploring with partners how we can best ensure that Myanmar implements the provisional measures, including through the United Nations Security Council. ​

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 20 January 2020
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
India: Nationality
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 13 January 2020 to Question 963 on India: Nationality, if he will make an estimate of how many Muslims were killed in connection with protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019 in Uttar Pradesh state in the Republic of India since 11 December 2019.
A
Answered by: Mrs Heather Wheeler
Answered on: 27 January 2020

The British Government has not made an estimate of Muslims killed in protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act in Uttar Pradesh since 11 December 2019. Any individual killed in a peaceful protest is one too many, and we encourage all states to ensure their domestic laws are enforced in line with international standards

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: 13 January 2020
Leader of the House
Holocaust Memorial Day
Commons
To ask the Leader of the House, if he will allocate a three hour debate in Government time, on a motion, That this House has considered Holocaust Memorial Day 2020, before the end of January 2020.
A
Answered by: Mr Jacob Rees-Mogg
Answered on: 16 January 2020

In my Business Statement today I announced a general debate on the Holocaust Memorial for Thursday 23 January 2020.

Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 06 January 2020
Cabinet Office
Public Bodies: Sanctions
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the proposed restrictions on public bodies using their resources to support boycotts, divestment or sanctions against foreign countries or those who trade with them would prevent support of campaigns against UK trade involving companies linked to the military of Myanmar.
A
Answered by: Oliver Dowden
Answered on: 14 January 2020

I refer the Hon. Member to the briefing notes on the Queen's Speech (p.133-134) published on 19 December 2019, which outline the Government's proposals:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/queens-speech-december-2019-background-briefing-notes

Grouped Questions: 389 | 390 | 391
Q
Asked by Ms Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 06 January 2020
Cabinet Office
Public Bodies: Sanctions
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the proposed restrictions on public institutions using their resources to support boycotts, divestment or sanctions against foreign countries or those who trade with them would prevent support of campaigns against UK trade involving firms linked with the persecution of the Uighur people in Xinjiang province, China.
A
Answered by: Oliver Dowden
Answered on: 14 January 2020

I refer the Hon. Member to the briefing notes on the Queen's Speech (p.133-134) published on 19 December 2019, which outline the Government's proposals:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/queens-speech-december-2019-background-briefing-notes

Grouped Questions: 388 | 390 | 391
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