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 2019-21 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
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 10 July 2020
Ministry of Defence
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, when he plans to respond to the letter of 28 May 2020 from the hon. Member for Glasgow North West on Commonwealth-born veterans applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK.
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 10 July 2020
Home Office
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of granting a further extension for people on a temporary visa due to the covid-19 pandemic, particularly where those people have underlying health conditions that may make international travel more hazardous.
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 10 July 2020
Home Office
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of granting a further extension for people on a Tier 4 General Student visa due to the covid-19 pandemic.
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 09 July 2020
Home Office
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what additional resources her Department is providing to Visa Application Centres throughout the World to help them tackle backlogs that have developed as a result of the covid-19 pandemic.
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 30 June 2020
Department for Transport
National Air Traffic Services: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to provide financial support to NATS during the covid-19 outbreak.
A
Answered by: Kelly Tolhurst
Answered on: 06 July 2020

The Government has set out an unprecedented package of financial support options for the aviation industry. We expect this to be made use of before bespoke support could be considered.

I have met with NATS, and departmental officials remain in regular contact with the NATS senior management team, to understand the financial impacts on the company from the current crisis, how these impacts are being managed and the potential need for financial support. We understand the risk of short term insolvency at this point to be low and we are working with them on the longer term.

Grouped Questions: 66905
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 30 June 2020
Department for Transport
National Air Traffic Services: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the covid-19 outbreak on the financial sustainability of NATS to maintain management of (a) UK sovereign airspace and (b) operational air traffic services to (i) airlines and (ii) airports.
A
Answered by: Kelly Tolhurst
Answered on: 06 July 2020

The Government has set out an unprecedented package of financial support options for the aviation industry. We expect this to be made use of before bespoke support could be considered.

I have met with NATS, and departmental officials remain in regular contact with the NATS senior management team, to understand the financial impacts on the company from the current crisis, how these impacts are being managed and the potential need for financial support. We understand the risk of short term insolvency at this point to be low and we are working with them on the longer term.

Grouped Questions: 66904
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 June 2020
Department for Education
Universities: Scotland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what discussions the Government had the Scottish Government on the policy to limit the number of English-domiciled students studying at Scottish universities prior to the announcement of that policy on 1 June 2020.
A
Answered by: Michelle Donelan
Answered on: 08 June 2020

My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, and I have regular meetings with Scottish ministers, and ministers from all the devolved administrations, about higher education issues. Meetings have included discussions on the development of student number controls policy.

Officials in the department also have regular meetings and discussions with their counterparts. Following the COVID-19 outbreak, we will continue to work closely with the devolved administrations on strengthening and stabilising the higher education system.

Student number controls for institutions in the devolved administrations only apply to the number of English-domiciled entrants who will be supported with their tuition fees through the Student Loans Company. The funding of English-domiciled students is not a devolved matter, and it is right and fair that this policy should apply consistently wherever they are studying in the UK.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 June 2020
Home Office
Entry Clearances: Overseas Students
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans she has to extend the graduate work visa to students who currently hold a Tier 4 Visa.
A
Answered by: Kevin Foster
Answered on: 08 June 2020

The Graduate route will be launched in the Summer of 2021.

To be eligible for the route, students must successfully complete a degree at undergraduate level or above at a Higher Education Provider with a track record of compliance and hold valid leave as a student when the route is introduced. Students who complete their courses prior to the introduction of the route will not be eligible.

Current Tier 4 students can benefit from the route, if their leave expires after the route is introduced, regardless of when their courses commenced.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 June 2020
Department for Education
Higher Education: Foreign Students
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of changes in the level of international students numbers on the higher education sector.
A
Answered by: Michelle Donelan
Answered on: 08 June 2020

In the 2018/19 academic year, tuition fees from international students at UK higher education providers accounted for around £7 billion of sector income. The government recognises that the COVID-19 outbreak will have an unparalleled impact on all elements of the global and UK economy. The higher education sector, including student recruitment, is no exception. We have been working closely with the sector to monitor the likely impacts of COVID-19 on international student numbers, including restrictions on travel. We understand that the COVID-19 outbreak and a possible reduction in the number of international students poses significant challenges and we stand ready to help the sector with various mitigations.

The government is working to ensure that existing rules and regulations, including visa regulations, are as flexible as possible for international students under these unprecedented circumstances. Higher education providers will also be flexible in accommodating applicants’ circumstances where possible, including if applicants are unable to travel to the UK in time for the start of the academic year.

On Monday 4 May, my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, announced the package of measures to stabilise university admissions this autumn and ensure sustainability in higher education at a time of unprecedented uncertainty. I wrote to all hon. Members on 4 May with full details of the package, which have also been published on GOV.UK: www.gov.uk/government/news/government-support-package-for-universities-and-students.

The new graduate route, due to be launched in summer 2021, provides an opportunity for international students who have been awarded their degree to stay and work in the UK at any skill level for 2 years. This represents a significant improvement in our offer to international students and will help to ensure that our world-leading higher education sector remains competitive internationally.

On Friday 5 June, the Department for Education announced Sir Steve Smith as the International Education Champion, a key deliverable of the 2019 International Education Strategy. Sir Steve will assist with opening up export growth opportunities for the whole UK education sector, tackling international challenges such as those posed to attracting international students and forging lasting global connections. The International Education Strategy, published in March 2019 by the Department for Education and the Department for International Trade, set out a commitment to review progress following its publication.  The review, which we intend to publish this autumn, will ensure that the International Education Strategy responds to this new context and the challenges that are posed.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 03 June 2020
Ministry of Defence
Armed Forces: Recruitment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what estimate he has made of the number of recruits to the armed forces with a reading age of between (a) five and seven, (b) seven and nine and (c) nine and eleven years in 2019.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 08 June 2020

In 2019 the number of Army recruits with reading ages between five and eleven were as follows:

Reading age

Number of recruits

Five – seven

20

Seven - nine

220

Nine – eleven

760

Notes:

In 2019 the Royal Air Force had no recruits join with a reading age below 11.

The Royal Navy does not assess recruits’ reading ages.

All numbers are rounded to the nearest 10.

Candidates have been permitted to join the Army with a reading age of five to seven on the understanding that they attend organised training at a local college to bring them up to the required minimum standard (Entry Level 2) before they commence Basic Training.

No recruits have joined the Armed Forces to date in 2020 with a reading age of five to seven years.

The UK Armed Forces use standard academic qualifications as entry criteria where relevant, and requirements vary depending on trade group. Entry is not determined by reading levels.

Over 94% of non-commissioned recruits, no matter their age, will enrol in an Apprenticeship Programme each year.

In line with Government Apprenticeship policy, all Service personnel undertaking an apprenticeship are required to attempt to gain a Functional Skills (FS) Level 2 award in literacy and numeracy - equivalent to at least a Grade 4 at GCSE level.

Since September 2012, Defence has adopted FS qualifications (English) and (Mathematics) as the accredited measures of literacy and numeracy skills for all Service personnel accessing in-Service literacy and numeracy provision.

Grouped Questions: 54137 | 54138 | 54139
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 03 June 2020
Ministry of Defence
Armed Forces: Recruitment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what estimate he has made of the number of recruits with a reading age of five to seven years that will join the armed forces in 2020.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 08 June 2020

In 2019 the number of Army recruits with reading ages between five and eleven were as follows:

Reading age

Number of recruits

Five – seven

20

Seven - nine

220

Nine – eleven

760

Notes:

In 2019 the Royal Air Force had no recruits join with a reading age below 11.

The Royal Navy does not assess recruits’ reading ages.

All numbers are rounded to the nearest 10.

Candidates have been permitted to join the Army with a reading age of five to seven on the understanding that they attend organised training at a local college to bring them up to the required minimum standard (Entry Level 2) before they commence Basic Training.

No recruits have joined the Armed Forces to date in 2020 with a reading age of five to seven years.

The UK Armed Forces use standard academic qualifications as entry criteria where relevant, and requirements vary depending on trade group. Entry is not determined by reading levels.

Over 94% of non-commissioned recruits, no matter their age, will enrol in an Apprenticeship Programme each year.

In line with Government Apprenticeship policy, all Service personnel undertaking an apprenticeship are required to attempt to gain a Functional Skills (FS) Level 2 award in literacy and numeracy - equivalent to at least a Grade 4 at GCSE level.

Since September 2012, Defence has adopted FS qualifications (English) and (Mathematics) as the accredited measures of literacy and numeracy skills for all Service personnel accessing in-Service literacy and numeracy provision.

Grouped Questions: 54136 | 54138 | 54139
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 03 June 2020
Ministry of Defence
Armed Forces: Recruitment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what the minimum reading age requirements are for recruits to the armed forces.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 08 June 2020

In 2019 the number of Army recruits with reading ages between five and eleven were as follows:

Reading age

Number of recruits

Five – seven

20

Seven - nine

220

Nine – eleven

760

Notes:

In 2019 the Royal Air Force had no recruits join with a reading age below 11.

The Royal Navy does not assess recruits’ reading ages.

All numbers are rounded to the nearest 10.

Candidates have been permitted to join the Army with a reading age of five to seven on the understanding that they attend organised training at a local college to bring them up to the required minimum standard (Entry Level 2) before they commence Basic Training.

No recruits have joined the Armed Forces to date in 2020 with a reading age of five to seven years.

The UK Armed Forces use standard academic qualifications as entry criteria where relevant, and requirements vary depending on trade group. Entry is not determined by reading levels.

Over 94% of non-commissioned recruits, no matter their age, will enrol in an Apprenticeship Programme each year.

In line with Government Apprenticeship policy, all Service personnel undertaking an apprenticeship are required to attempt to gain a Functional Skills (FS) Level 2 award in literacy and numeracy - equivalent to at least a Grade 4 at GCSE level.

Since September 2012, Defence has adopted FS qualifications (English) and (Mathematics) as the accredited measures of literacy and numeracy skills for all Service personnel accessing in-Service literacy and numeracy provision.

Grouped Questions: 54136 | 54137 | 54139
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 03 June 2020
Ministry of Defence
Armed Forces: Recruitment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how the reading age of recruits to the armed forces is determined.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 08 June 2020

In 2019 the number of Army recruits with reading ages between five and eleven were as follows:

Reading age

Number of recruits

Five – seven

20

Seven - nine

220

Nine – eleven

760

Notes:

In 2019 the Royal Air Force had no recruits join with a reading age below 11.

The Royal Navy does not assess recruits’ reading ages.

All numbers are rounded to the nearest 10.

Candidates have been permitted to join the Army with a reading age of five to seven on the understanding that they attend organised training at a local college to bring them up to the required minimum standard (Entry Level 2) before they commence Basic Training.

No recruits have joined the Armed Forces to date in 2020 with a reading age of five to seven years.

The UK Armed Forces use standard academic qualifications as entry criteria where relevant, and requirements vary depending on trade group. Entry is not determined by reading levels.

Over 94% of non-commissioned recruits, no matter their age, will enrol in an Apprenticeship Programme each year.

In line with Government Apprenticeship policy, all Service personnel undertaking an apprenticeship are required to attempt to gain a Functional Skills (FS) Level 2 award in literacy and numeracy - equivalent to at least a Grade 4 at GCSE level.

Since September 2012, Defence has adopted FS qualifications (English) and (Mathematics) as the accredited measures of literacy and numeracy skills for all Service personnel accessing in-Service literacy and numeracy provision.

Grouped Questions: 54136 | 54137 | 54138
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 03 June 2020
Treasury
Companies: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether companies in breach of consumer contracts are eligible for covid-19 support.
A
Answered by: Kemi Badenoch
Answered on: 08 June 2020

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) enforces rules on unfair contract terms. On 30th April the CMA published a statement on its views on consumer protection law including in relation to COVID-19. People and businesses who have seen or experienced businesses behaving unfairly during the coronavirus outbreak can report it to the CMA by using their dedicated webpage: https://www.coronavirus-business-complaint.service.gov.uk/.

The Government has announced unprecedented support for business and workers to protect them against the current economic emergency including almost £300 billion of guarantees – equivalent to 15% of UK GDP. The Business Support website provides further information about how businesses can access the support that has been made available, who is eligible and how to apply - https://www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 01 June 2020
Treasury
Self-employment Income Support Scheme
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he would make a change in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme regulations to allow the 2019-20 tax year results to be used in calculations for payments made under that scheme.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 04 June 2020

It has not been possible to include those who began trading after the 2018-19 tax year in the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme. This was a very difficult decision and it was taken for practical reasons. It is correct that individuals can now submit Income Tax Self Assessment returns for 2019-20, but there would be significant risks for the public purse if the Government relied on these returns for the scheme. HMRC would not be able to distinguish genuine self-employed individuals who started trading in 2019-20 from fake applications by fraudulent operators and organised criminal gangs seeking to exploit the SEISS. The Government cannot expose the tax system to these risks.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has said there will be no further extension or changes to the SEISS. However, the newly self-employed may still be eligible for other financial support provided by the Government. The SEISS is one element of a comprehensive package of support for individuals and businesses, including the newly self-employed. This package includes Bounce Back loans, tax deferrals, rental support, increased levels of Universal Credit, mortgage holidays, and other business support grants. More information about the full range of business support measures is available at: www.gov.uk/government/collections/financial-support-for-businesses-during-coronavirus-covid-19.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 01 June 2020
Treasury
Members: Correspondence
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to respond to the letter from the hon. Member for Glasgow North West constituency of 1 April 2020 in relation to support for the self-employed, temporary and freelance workers.
A
Answered by: Kemi Badenoch
Answered on: 04 June 2020
HM Treasury has received unprecedented amounts of correspondence since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, and apologises for the delay in responding to the Honourable Member. The Honourable Members’ correspondence is receiving attention and will be replied to as soon as possible.
Grouped Questions: 52125 | 52126 | 52127 | 52157 | 52158
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 01 June 2020
Treasury
Members: Correspondence
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to respond to the letter of 6 April 2020 from the hon. Member for Glasgow North West on access to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme for new employees.
A
Answered by: Kemi Badenoch
Answered on: 04 June 2020
HM Treasury has received unprecedented amounts of correspondence since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, and apologises for the delay in responding to the Honourable Member. The Honourable Members’ correspondence is receiving attention and will be replied to as soon as possible.
Grouped Questions: 52125 | 52126 | 52127 | 52156 | 52158
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 01 June 2020
Treasury
Members: Correspondence
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to respond to the letter of 24 April 2020 from the hon. Member for Glasgow North West on umbrella employment and the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
A
Answered by: Kemi Badenoch
Answered on: 04 June 2020
HM Treasury has received unprecedented amounts of correspondence since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, and apologises for the delay in responding to the Honourable Member. The Honourable Members’ correspondence is receiving attention and will be replied to as soon as possible.
Grouped Questions: 52125 | 52126 | 52127 | 52156 | 52157
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 20 May 2020
Treasury
Self-employment Income Support Scheme
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to make an announcement on the next stage of the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 02 June 2020

The Chancellor of the Exchequer announced an extension to the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme on 29 May.

Eligible individuals whose business is adversely affected by COVID-19 will be able to claim a second and final grant when the scheme reopens for further applications in August. Individuals will be able to claim a taxable grant worth 70 per cent of their average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering three months’ worth of profits and capped at £6,570 in total.

There will be no further changes and no further extensions to the scheme, which continues to be one of the most generous in the world.

Grouped Questions: 48303 | 48384 | 48652 | 49040
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 20 April 2020
Department for Transport
Motor Vehicles: Testing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what provisions he is putting in place for key workers not able to secure an annual MOT test for their vehicle before 30 March 2020.
A
Answered by: Rachel Maclean
Answered on: 27 April 2020

Drivers, including key workers, whose vehicles were due an MOT up to and including 29 March 2020 will need to get their vehicle tested if they need to use it.

MOT centres and garages are allowed to stay open to carry out MOTs, and retests, of vehicles that had an MOT due before 30 March 2020. Garages can also stay open to carry out essential repairs or services.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency has provided advice to MOT garages on what they can do to limit the spread of the coronavirus by:

  • following social distancing advice and keeping at least 2 metres between customers and members of staff at all times;

  • reminding employees and customers to wash their hands for 20 seconds more frequently than normal;

  • frequently clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are touched regularly;

  • using seat covers and new disposable gloves for every test;

  • avoiding handling cash and instead use mobile or contactless card payments where possible (the contactless payment limit in the UK increased from £30 to £45 on 1 April 2020); and

  • the MOT centre not issuing a paper copy of the MOT certificate (a copy of the certificate can be downloaded after the test).

A vehicle cannot be driven on the road if the MOT has run out. The only exceptions to this are driving to a pre-arranged MOT test, and driving to or from somewhere for repairs to be carried out.

MOT due dates for cars, motorcycles and light vans will be extended by six months if the MOT test was due on or after 30 March 2020, but it is essential that vehicles are kept in a roadworthy condition and safe to drive.

The introduction of MOT exemptions for cars, motorcycles and light vans required new legislation. It was not possible for this legislation to come into effect before 30 March, or for it to be applied retrospectively.

The Department for Transport is working with insurers and the police to make sure people are not unfairly penalised for not being able to get an MOT whilst they are unable to do so.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[R]
Close

Registered Interest

Indicates that a relevant interest has been declared.

[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 17 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Veterans: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what plans he has for mobilisation of retired Armed Forces personnel to assist with the response to the covid-19 outbreak.
A
Answered by: James Heappey
Answered on: 23 March 2020

Where retired Armed Forces personnel are members of the ex-Regular Reserve, they have a legal liability for service if so required. Whilst the option to call on them for support exists and may be used to support the UK Government's response to the outbreak, there are currently no plans for any large-scale deployments of ex-Regular Reservists.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[R]
Close

Registered Interest

Indicates that a relevant interest has been declared.

[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 17 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Veterans: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether retired Armed Forces personnel can volunteer to assist with the Government's response to the covid-19 outbreak.
A
Answered by: James Heappey
Answered on: 23 March 2020

Where retired Armed Forces personnel are members of the ex-Regular Reserve, they have a legal liability for service if so required. Such personnel may volunteer to assist with the response to the outbreak, in the same way that they may volunteer to assist with any other military activity; however, there are currently no plans for any large-scale deployments of ex-Regular Reservists.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 11 March 2020
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Tourism: Coronavirus
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the situation relating to covid-19, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of providing emergency financial support for the tourism sector.
A
Answered by: Nigel Huddleston
Answered on: 16 March 2020

We are aware that the COVID-19 outbreak is impacting businesses across many sectors and that the tourism sector has been significantly impacted.

I regularly engage with stakeholders in the tourism sector and across Government on this developing issue. My Department and VisitBritain have organised two meetings between the industry and the Deputy Chief Medical Officer and VisitBritain are organising weekly meetings with industry. I will continue to monitor its impact on the sector and would urge tourism businesses to share information with VisitBritain.

The Government announced a range of measures in the Budget to provide economic support for affected businesses, including SMEs in the tourism and hospitality sector. I also discussed this matter in detail with my counterparts from the Devolved Administrations last week.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 09 March 2020
Treasury
Revenue and Customs: Proof of Identity
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of including the Post Office Document Certification service in the list of approved document certifiers for HMRC services.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 12 March 2020

HMRC currently have no plans to ask the Post Office to provide document verification services.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 09 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Nuclear Weapons: Testing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, for what reason veterans who were present at British nuclear testing have experienced a 12-month delay before receiving a decision from Veterans UK on their War Disablement Pension applications.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 12 March 2020

Decisions on war pension claims are evidence based. In line with all claims made under the War Pension Scheme, claims relating to service during British nuclear testing are considered on their individual merits and specific facts. Decisions are made in accordance with legislation, namely the Naval, Military and Air Forces etc. (Disablement and Death) Service Pensions Order, revised April 2006 and are made based on the medical and service evidence available at the time, for this reason the length of time taken to consider individual claims may vary.

As of the end of February 2020, the Department's rolling 12 month Average Clearance time for War Pension Scheme claims was at a figure of 137.60 working days.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 05 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Nuclear Weapons: Testing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, with reference to the Answer of 23 May 2019 to Question 256301, for what reasons F Med 12 and F Med 29 forms were not included in the medical records of some veterans present at the UK's nuclear testing programme.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 10 March 2020

To identify any such reasons would necessitate a review of individual veterans' Service medical records. This could only be achieved at disproportionate cost.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Nuclear Weapons: Testing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the medical conditions of descendants of veterans who were present at the British nuclear testing programme.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 09 March 2020

There is no published peer-reviewed evidence of excess illness or mortality among nuclear test veterans as a group that could be linked to their participation in the tests or to exposure to radiation because of that participation. The Ministry of Defence has also seen no evidence of excessive ill-health or mortality among the descendants of nuclear test veterans.

Nuclear test veterans who believe they have suffered ill-health due to service have the right to apply for no-fault compensation under the War Pension Scheme. War Pensions are payable in respect of illness or injury as a result of service in the Armed Forces before 6 April 2005, with the benefit of reasonable doubt always given to the claimant. Decisions are medically certified and follow consideration of available service and medical evidence and carry full rights of appeal to an independent tribunal.

The Ministry of Defence has no plans to provide compensation to the descendants of nuclear test veterans.

Grouped Questions: 25153
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Nuclear Weapons: Testing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, for which medical disorders veterans who were present at British nuclear tests can claim a war disablement pension.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 09 March 2020

All ex-service personnel, including Nuclear Test Veterans, can claim a War Pension in respect of their service before 6 April 2005.

Nuclear Test Veterans can claim for any condition which they consider may have been caused, or made worse, by their service. Each claim is considered on its own merits.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 March 2020
Ministry of Defence
Nuclear Weapons: Testing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, whether he plans to provide compensation for (a) veterans who were present at British nuclear tests and (b) their descendants.
A
Answered by: Johnny Mercer
Answered on: 09 March 2020

There is no published peer-reviewed evidence of excess illness or mortality among nuclear test veterans as a group that could be linked to their participation in the tests or to exposure to radiation because of that participation. The Ministry of Defence has also seen no evidence of excessive ill-health or mortality among the descendants of nuclear test veterans.

Nuclear test veterans who believe they have suffered ill-health due to service have the right to apply for no-fault compensation under the War Pension Scheme. War Pensions are payable in respect of illness or injury as a result of service in the Armed Forces before 6 April 2005, with the benefit of reasonable doubt always given to the claimant. Decisions are medically certified and follow consideration of available service and medical evidence and carry full rights of appeal to an independent tribunal.

The Ministry of Defence has no plans to provide compensation to the descendants of nuclear test veterans.

Grouped Questions: 25151
Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 March 2020
Cabinet Office
Veterans: Medals
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether the Advisory Military Sub-Committee has heard representation on the case for service medals for veterans who were present at British nuclear tests.
A
Answered by: Chloe Smith
Answered on: 09 March 2020

The assessment of historic medals claims is a matter for the independent Advisory Military Sub-Committee (AMSC). Campaigners can be assured their case is under review and recommendations will be made as soon as possible.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 February 2020
Department for Work and Pensions
Jobcentres: Food Banks
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether it is her Department’s policy for Jobcentre staff not to refer individuals to Trussell Trust foodbanks.
A
Answered by: Will Quince
Answered on: 27 February 2020

Under long-standing national guidance issued to all Jobcentres, staff can signpost benefit claimants to a local food bank provided all sources of formal support have been considered.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 12 February 2020
Treasury
Treasury Select Committee: Select Committee Reports
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to respond to the Third Report of the Treasury Committee, Session 2019, published on 1 November 2019.
A
Answered by: John Glen
Answered on: 24 February 2020

The government responded to the report on 5th February 2020 and the Committee will publish our response in the usual way in due course.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 12 February 2020
Treasury
Electronic Funds Transfer: Fraud
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to place the Contingent Reimbursement Model Code for Authorised Push Payment on a statutory footing.
A
Answered by: John Glen
Answered on: 24 February 2020

In March 2018, the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) established a steering group of financial institutions and consumer representatives to develop a voluntary code of good practice to help protect consumers against authorized push payment (APP) scams.

At the end of February 2019, the steering group published the Contingent Reimbursement Model Code for Authorised Push Payments (the Code), which sets out the agreed principles for greater protection of consumers and the circumstances in which they will be reimbursed, making a significant step in delivering improved protections for consumers. The Code became effective on 28 May 2019 and customers of those payment service providers that are signatories (which includes all of the 6 largest banks and building societies) are protected under the Code from this date.

The Code is still in its infancy and the Government believes it should be given time to embed and take full effect before its effectiveness can properly be assessed. The Lending Standards Board (LSB), which is responsible for the Code, has committed to a first annual review of its operation in Summer 2020 and will shortly publish more information about its planned approach, including its intention to consult widely with consumer representatives and the industry. The Government looks forward to reviewing these findings when they become available.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 12 February 2020
Treasury
Electronic Funds Transfer: Fraud
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of making the Contingent Reimbursement Model Code for Authorised Push Payment Fraud retrospective.
A
Answered by: John Glen
Answered on: 24 February 2020

The Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) established a non-governmental steering group of financial institutions and consumer representatives in March 2018 to develop a voluntary code of good practice to help protect consumers against Authorised Push Payment (APP) scams. At the end of February 2019, the steering group published the Contingent Reimbursement Model Code for Authorised Push Payments (the Code). The Code became effective on 28 May 2019 and customers of those payment service providers that are signatories are protected under the Code from this date. The Government recognises this may be disappointing for victims of APP scams that occurred before this date.

If a victim of an APP scam is not satisfied with how their payment service provider has handled their specific case, they may wish to contact the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). The FOS was established by Government to provide a proportionate, prompt and informal resolution of disputes between a consumer and financial service firm.

Q
(Glasgow North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 16 January 2020
Attorney General
Asylum: Children
Commons
What discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the legal implications of Clause 37 of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill.
A
Answered by: Mr Geoffrey Cox
Answered on: 16 January 2020

I cannot comment on Cabinet discussions, or on whether or not I have given legal advice.

What I can say is that the Government remains fully committed to the principle of family reunion and supporting the most vulnerable children. Clause 37 of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill does not represent a change of government policy in that regard. It simply removes the statutory requirement to negotiate.

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