Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2017-19 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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Q
Asked by Lord Lexden
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Education
Teachers: Pensions
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the ability of maintained and independent schools to afford the increase in the employer’s contribution to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme announced in October.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 10 December 2018

In the schools sector, the department currently proposes to cover the costs of maintained schools, academies, independent special schools and non-maintained special schools. The department will be consulting shortly to form an assessment on the impact these costs will impose on the sector.

Q
Asked by Lord Lexden
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Education
Teachers: Pensions
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have received representations from the Independent Schools Council about the forthcoming increase in the employer’s contribution to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme; and if so, what reply they have given.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The government has received a number of representations from employer representatives including the Independent Schools Council, to both the Department for Education (DfE) and to Her Majesty’s Treasury (HM Treasury), about the proposed increase in employer contributions and the impact this would have on their schools. HM Treasury and the DfE will be responding imminently.

Q
Asked by Lord Lexden
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Education
Teachers: Pensions
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what were their reasons for increasing the employer’s contribution to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 10 December 2018

A number of factors determine the cost of providing pensions, most significantly by the Superannuation Contributions Adjusted for Past Experience (SCAPE) rate. The SCAPE discount rate is the central measure of the affordability of public service pension schemes; it is based on the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) forecasts for long-term Growth Domestic Product growth. In light of the material change to the OBR forecast compared to the forecast at Budget 2016, and based on the methodology for setting the SCAPE rate as agreed in 2011,
HM Treasury took the decision to set the SCAPE discount rate at 2.4% plus Consumer Price Index from 1 April 2019. This reduction in the SCAPE rate has resulted in an increase to employer contributions in the Teachers Pension Scheme of 7.2 percentage points.[1]

[1] based on an implementation date of 1 September 2019.

Q
Asked by Lord Lexden
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Education
Special Educational Needs: Appeals
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the reply by Viscount Younger of Leckie on 22 November (HL Deb, cols 325–8), whether they will conduct an inquiry into reports that local councils spent £100 million in four years to prevent parents obtaining support for children with special needs, losing nine out of ten cases.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The government does not have any plans to conduct such an inquiry.

The government has made fundamental changes to the way the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) support system works for families. The system is now more person-centred with significant direction given to local authorities, and other bodies, to engage effectively with families.

Local authorities should respond appropriately to any SEND Tribunal appeal. In doing so, they will inevitably incur costs. When families make appeals, the local authority will need to judge how to respond to them and in doing so, must put the interests of the child or young person first.

The government are investing £20 million until March 2020 to improve the quality of local information, advice and support services available to families, and to provide guidance and training to local authorities to help improve the quality of education, health and care (EHC) plans.

Parents have the right to ask that an independent school, approved under Section 41 of the Children and Families Act (2014) and published in a list available to all parents and young people, be named on their EHC plan.

The local authority must, after consultation with the school, name the requested school unless specific criteria apply. These conditions are that the school would be unsuitable for the young person’s needs, incompatible with the efficient education of others or an inefficient use of the local authority’s resources.

Parents may also make representations for a place at an independent school that is not on the Section 41 list and the local authority must consider their request. While not under the same conditional duty to name the provider, the local authority must have regard to the general principle that children should be educated in accordance with their parents’ wishes if this is compatible with the provision of efficient instruction and does not cause unreasonable public expenditure.

Grouped Questions: HL11793
Q
Asked by Lord Lexden
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Education
Special Educational Needs: Private Education
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the reply by Viscount Younger of Leckie on 22 November (HL Deb, cols 325–8), whether they will ensure that all local councils respect the right of parents of children with special needs to nominate a local independent school on an education health and care plan.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The government does not have any plans to conduct such an inquiry.

The government has made fundamental changes to the way the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) support system works for families. The system is now more person-centred with significant direction given to local authorities, and other bodies, to engage effectively with families.

Local authorities should respond appropriately to any SEND Tribunal appeal. In doing so, they will inevitably incur costs. When families make appeals, the local authority will need to judge how to respond to them and in doing so, must put the interests of the child or young person first.

The government are investing £20 million until March 2020 to improve the quality of local information, advice and support services available to families, and to provide guidance and training to local authorities to help improve the quality of education, health and care (EHC) plans.

Parents have the right to ask that an independent school, approved under Section 41 of the Children and Families Act (2014) and published in a list available to all parents and young people, be named on their EHC plan.

The local authority must, after consultation with the school, name the requested school unless specific criteria apply. These conditions are that the school would be unsuitable for the young person’s needs, incompatible with the efficient education of others or an inefficient use of the local authority’s resources.

Parents may also make representations for a place at an independent school that is not on the Section 41 list and the local authority must consider their request. While not under the same conditional duty to name the provider, the local authority must have regard to the general principle that children should be educated in accordance with their parents’ wishes if this is compatible with the provision of efficient instruction and does not cause unreasonable public expenditure.

Grouped Questions: HL11792
Q
Asked by Lord Scriven
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Human Rights
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 19 November (HL11289), whether they have taken into consideration the UN Special Rapporteurs’ concerns on Bahrain for reports pertaining to (1) infringements of the right to life, freedom from torture, freedom of religion and belief, and freedom of peaceful assembly of Fadhel Sayed Abbas Hassan Radhi, Mohamed Abdul Hasan Ahmed Al Mutaghawi, Sayed Alawi Husain Alawi Husain and three other individuals, (2) violations of the rights to life, liberty and security of person, freedom from torture and ill-treatment, and right to a fair trial of Maher Abbas Yousef al-Khabbaz, and (3) cruel and degrading treatment of Nabeel Rajab at Jau Prison.
A
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The British Government takes note of a number of sources of information on these issues; including publications by the United Nations. We continue to encourage those with concerns about treatment in detention to raise them with the appropriate Bahraini human rights oversight body. We encourage the oversight bodies in Bahrain to carry out thorough and swift investigations into any such claims.

The noble Lord will recall that the Minister for the Middle East and North Africa, Alistair Burt, expressed his concerns on the sentence given to Mr Rajab in his written statement of 21 February. He also reiterated the UK's call for Bahrain to protect freedom of expression for all its citizens, in line with international obligations. Our Embassy in Bahrain has closely monitored the trials of Mr Rajab and officials regularly attend Mr Rajab's court hearings, including the handing down of the latest appeal verdict. We have raised the case at senior levels as part of the UK's ongoing open dialogue with Bahrain. I am aware that there is now an opportunity for Mr Rajab's legal team to apply for an appeal through the judicial system. My officials will continue to monitor the case closely.

The UK’s position on the use of the death penalty is longstanding and clear. We oppose its use in all circumstances and countries. The Government of Bahrain are fully aware of our position.

Q
Asked by Lord Scriven
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Political Prisoners
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 19 November (HL11287), when, and with whom, the cases of female political prisoners Hajer Mansoor Hassan, Medina Ali and Najah Yusuf were last raised with a member of the government of Bahrain.
A
Answered on: 10 December 2018

You will know from previous correspondence that our Embassy in Bahrain and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office continue to monitor the cases of Hajer Mansoor, Najah Ahmed Yusuf and Medina Ali. We have raised the cases at a senior level with the Government of Bahrain

We continue to encourage those with concerns about treatment in detention to report these to the appropriate oversight body. We urge these oversight bodies to carry out swift and thorough investigations into any such claims. We understand that the National Institution for Human Rights and the Ministry of Interior Ombudsman are aware of these cases and have been in contact with the three individuals

Q
Asked by Lord Scriven
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Bahrain: Capital Punishment
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon on 19 November (HL11288),  how many of the individuals currently on death row in Bahrain have been sentenced on political grounds; and what are the names of the three individuals who have completed the appeals process.
A
Answered on: 10 December 2018

We do not hold figures for the number of political prisoners in Bahrain. Details of individuals are a matter for the Government of Bahrain.

Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Social Media: Regulation
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans, if any, they have for the regulation of social media companies.
A
Answered by: Lord Ashton of Hyde
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The government is publishing a White Paper on Online Harms this winter, as a precursor to legislation. This White Paper will set out a range of legislative and non-legislative measures detailing how we will tackle online harms and will set clear responsibilities for social media companies and others to keep UK citizens safe.

Q
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Israel: Parks
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the bill currently in the Israeli Knesset to allow private non-profit organisations to manage national parks; and whether they intend to make representations to the government of Israel about the impact that bill may have on a two-state solution.
A
Answered on: 10 December 2018

​We have not made any assessment on this issue. The Government is committed to making progress towards a two-state solution, and we will continue to press the parties to refrain from actions that make peace more difficult.

Q
Asked by Lord Wigley
Asked on: 26 November 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Social Security
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Draft Political Declaration setting out the framework for the future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union, published on 22 November, which aspects of social security will be co-ordinated with the EU.
A
Answered by: Baroness Buscombe
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The details of which aspects of social security will be coordinated with the EU under the future relationship are subject to further negotiation with the EU.

Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Gambling: Children
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, on the basis of Gambling Commission's research study, Young People and Gambling, published in November, what is the problem gambling rate for children and young people who gamble by (1) playing fruit machines in pubs, (2) online, (3) buying scratchcards, (4) private bets; and (5) cards with their friends; and how those rates compare with the problem gambling rates for adults in Great Britain.
A
Answered by: Lord Ashton of Hyde
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Gambling Commission’s Young People & Gambling 2018 report was based on a survey completed by 2,865 children in schools in England, Scotland and Wales. Of these, 37 children were identified as problem gamblers. The data was then weighted by gender, age and region. Where sample sizes for an age group were particularly small (for example, only 66 children aged 16 completed the survey, of which two were identified as problem gamblers) these children had large weights in the final dataset. Estimates about rates or numbers of problem gamblers should therefore be treated with caution.

Due to the small numbers both of children participating in any given gambling activity, and of problem gamblers identified by the survey, it is not possible to provide robust problem gambling rates on a per activity basis, including for those legally playing the National Lottery.

Of the 37 respondents identified as problem gamblers, 33 had on at least one occasion in the past 12 months spent their own money on an activity which is regulated under the Gambling Act 2005.

Grouped Questions: HL11846 | HL11847 | HL11848
Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Gambling: Children
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, of the 1.7 per cent of 11–16 year olds identified as problem gamblers by the Gambling Commission's research study, Young People and Gambling, published in November, what proportion are engaged in gambling activities regulated by the Gambling Act 2005.
A
Answered by: Lord Ashton of Hyde
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Gambling Commission’s Young People & Gambling 2018 report was based on a survey completed by 2,865 children in schools in England, Scotland and Wales. Of these, 37 children were identified as problem gamblers. The data was then weighted by gender, age and region. Where sample sizes for an age group were particularly small (for example, only 66 children aged 16 completed the survey, of which two were identified as problem gamblers) these children had large weights in the final dataset. Estimates about rates or numbers of problem gamblers should therefore be treated with caution.

Due to the small numbers both of children participating in any given gambling activity, and of problem gamblers identified by the survey, it is not possible to provide robust problem gambling rates on a per activity basis, including for those legally playing the National Lottery.

Of the 37 respondents identified as problem gamblers, 33 had on at least one occasion in the past 12 months spent their own money on an activity which is regulated under the Gambling Act 2005.

Grouped Questions: HL11845 | HL11847 | HL11848
Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Gambling: Children
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, of the 1.7 per cent of 11–16 year olds identified as problem gamblers by the Gambling Commission's research study, Young People and Gambling, published in November, what proportion are legally playing the National Lottery.
A
Answered by: Lord Ashton of Hyde
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Gambling Commission’s Young People & Gambling 2018 report was based on a survey completed by 2,865 children in schools in England, Scotland and Wales. Of these, 37 children were identified as problem gamblers. The data was then weighted by gender, age and region. Where sample sizes for an age group were particularly small (for example, only 66 children aged 16 completed the survey, of which two were identified as problem gamblers) these children had large weights in the final dataset. Estimates about rates or numbers of problem gamblers should therefore be treated with caution.

Due to the small numbers both of children participating in any given gambling activity, and of problem gamblers identified by the survey, it is not possible to provide robust problem gambling rates on a per activity basis, including for those legally playing the National Lottery.

Of the 37 respondents identified as problem gamblers, 33 had on at least one occasion in the past 12 months spent their own money on an activity which is regulated under the Gambling Act 2005.

Grouped Questions: HL11845 | HL11846 | HL11848
Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Gambling: Children
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, of the 1.7 per cent of 11–16 year olds identified as problem gamblers by the Gambling Commission's research study, Young People and Gambling, published in November, what proportion have problem gambling behaviour associated with private bets.
A
Answered by: Lord Ashton of Hyde
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Gambling Commission’s Young People & Gambling 2018 report was based on a survey completed by 2,865 children in schools in England, Scotland and Wales. Of these, 37 children were identified as problem gamblers. The data was then weighted by gender, age and region. Where sample sizes for an age group were particularly small (for example, only 66 children aged 16 completed the survey, of which two were identified as problem gamblers) these children had large weights in the final dataset. Estimates about rates or numbers of problem gamblers should therefore be treated with caution.

Due to the small numbers both of children participating in any given gambling activity, and of problem gamblers identified by the survey, it is not possible to provide robust problem gambling rates on a per activity basis, including for those legally playing the National Lottery.

Of the 37 respondents identified as problem gamblers, 33 had on at least one occasion in the past 12 months spent their own money on an activity which is regulated under the Gambling Act 2005.

Grouped Questions: HL11845 | HL11846 | HL11847
Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Multiple Births
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord O'Shaughnessy on 14 November (HL11166) relating to continued financial support of the quality improvement programme delivered by the Twins and Multiple Births Association which currently ends in March 2019, when they expect to confirm their business plans for future grant funding.
A
Answered by: Lord O'Shaughnessy
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Department’s Business Planning process takes place annually between December and March each year. Expenditure, including any awards made through grant funding, cannot be confirmed until the Business Planning process has been concluded and budgets for the relevant financial year approved. Opportunities to apply for grant funding from the Department are posted on GOV.UK as they arise.

Since the Twins and Multiple Births Association’s (TAMBA) award in 2015/16, funding to the voluntary sector has been reshaped and the Innovation, Excellence and Strategic Development Fund, under which TAMBA received their award, no longer accepts applications.

The successor scheme is the Health and Wellbeing Fund, the second round of which was recently launched for applications. The theme of this round relates to children and young people’s mental health. However, the Department’s Business Planning for 2019/20 has not yet concluded, and therefore the scheme remains subject to the approval of departmental budgets and its launch does not commit the Department to the funding of any grant awards.

Q
Asked by Lord Jopling
Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department for International Trade
UK Trade with EU
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the reply by the Lord Privy Seal (Baroness Evans of Bowes Park) on 26 November (HL Deb, col 511), whether, under the proposed free trade deals after the end of the transitional period, goods which are imported into the UK tariff-free from non-EU states under those deals, would be liable to the EU's Common External Tariff when they and similar goods produced in the UK are exported to the EU and would be within the definition of the EU's tariff arrangements.
A
Answered by: Baroness Fairhead
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Political Declaration states that the future economic partnership between the UK and EU “should ensure no tariffs, fees, charges or quantitative restrictions across all sectors”. It also states that “It should facilitate trade and investment between the Parties to the extent possible, while respecting the integrity of the Union's Single Market and the Customs Union as well as the United Kingdom's internal market, and recognising the development of an independent trade policy by the United Kingdom beyond this economic partnership.” Goods exported from the UK to the EU following the transition period will be subject to arrangements that are consistent with these objectives and principles.

Asked on: 27 November 2018
Department for International Trade
Trade Agreements: USA
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to reach a free trade agreement with the United States after Brexit; and what impact they estimate a no-deal Brexit would have on trade relations with the United States.
A
Answered by: Baroness Fairhead
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The United States is already our largest trading partner outside the European Union. The UK and US have a close relationship in terms of our trade, financial, cultural and investment links. After leaving the EU in March 2019 we will be able to pursue an ambitious Free Trade Agreement with the US.

In July 2017 my Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for International Trade launched the UK-US Trade and Investment Working Group which has since met on five occasions. As well as looking at delivering commercial continuity for UK and US businesses, workers and consumers post-EU exit, this group is laying the groundwork for an ambitious UK-US free Trade Agreement.

Our priority is to ensure there is no disruption to our global trading relationships as we leave the EU. The government will continue to prepare for all eventualities with our trading partners, including the US.

Q
Asked by Nigel Dodds
(Belfast North)
Asked on: 28 November 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
European Reference Networks
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what progress he has made in negotiations with the EU on UK participation in European Reference Networks after the UK leaves the EU.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 10 December 2018

In our July 2018 White Paper we set out our ambition to explore continued participation in European Reference Networks as part of a future agreement on science and innovation.

Since then we have made progress in negotiations with the EU. The publication of the Political Declaration in November was a significant milestone, and outlined a clear vision for our future relationship with the EU, including cooperation on areas of shared interest such as science and innovation. The Withdrawal Agreement was also published in November and both documents were endorsed by EU Member States at the special European Council on Sunday 25 November. This provided clarity to industry on the terms of our implementation period, during which UK healthcare providers would be able to continue participating in European Reference Networks.

The UK would like to explore participation in European Reference Networks beyond 2020 as part of detailed negotiations on our future relationship. We believe that the UK’s continued participation in these networks benefits citizens, researchers and patients across the UK and the EU, and we look forward to discussing this with the EU.

Q
Asked on: 28 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Gambling
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what training NHS England provided for GPs to support those affected by gambling-related harm in (1) 2013, (2) 2014, (3) 2015, (4) 2016, (5) 2017, and (6) 2018; and what plans they have to increase the level of training provided.
A
Answered by: Lord O'Shaughnessy
Answered on: 10 December 2018

NHS England is not responsible for the provision of general practitioner training. The standard of medical training is the responsibility of the General Medical Council (GMC) and the training curricula for postgraduate trainee doctors is set by the relevant medical Royal College, which has to meet standards set by the GMC. Whilst curricula do not necessarily highlight specific conditions for doctors to be aware of, they instead emphasise the skills and approaches that a doctor must develop to ensure accurate and timely diagnoses and treatment plans for their patients. NHS England expects clinicians to use their professional judgement with patients presenting with particular symptoms and keep up to date with current developments and treatments.

Information on the number of trips to a hospital or safe place made by police or ambulance crews connected with gambling associated with mental health are not collected centrally.

Grouped Questions: HL11890
Q
Asked on: 28 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Gambling: Mental Illness
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many of the trips to a hospital or safe place made by the police or ambulance crews were connected with gambling problems associated with mental health in (1) 2013, (2) 2014, (3) 2015, (4) 2016, (5) 2017, and (6) 2018.
A
Answered by: Lord O'Shaughnessy
Answered on: 10 December 2018

NHS England is not responsible for the provision of general practitioner training. The standard of medical training is the responsibility of the General Medical Council (GMC) and the training curricula for postgraduate trainee doctors is set by the relevant medical Royal College, which has to meet standards set by the GMC. Whilst curricula do not necessarily highlight specific conditions for doctors to be aware of, they instead emphasise the skills and approaches that a doctor must develop to ensure accurate and timely diagnoses and treatment plans for their patients. NHS England expects clinicians to use their professional judgement with patients presenting with particular symptoms and keep up to date with current developments and treatments.

Information on the number of trips to a hospital or safe place made by police or ambulance crews connected with gambling associated with mental health are not collected centrally.

Grouped Questions: HL11889
Q
Asked by Lady Hermon
(North Down)
Asked on: 29 November 2018
Northern Ireland Office
Northern Ireland Assembly: Elections
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, what criteria she will use in deciding to call a Northern Ireland Assembly election; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: John Penrose
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The basis on which the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland shall set a date for the election is set out in the Northern Ireland Act 1998. As the Secretary of State has said, we do not believe that holding an election during this time of significant change and political uncertainty would be helpful or would increase the prospects of restoring the Executive.

That is why the NI (Executive Formation and Exercise of Functions) Act provides for a limited period during which there is no legal requirement to call a further election and during which an Executive may be formed at any time. This will provide the time and space needed to work with the parties towards a further phase of talks to restore the Executive.

Q
Asked by Deidre Brock
(Edinburgh North and Leith)
Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Free Movement of People
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, pursuant to the Answer of 12 January 2018 to Question 121082, what recent progress his Department has made on securing the right of onward movement for UK nationals with status in an EU Member State.
A
Answered by: Mr Robin Walker
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The UK pushed strongly for the inclusion of onward movement rights during the first phase of negotiations on citizens’ rights in the Withdrawal Agreement, but the EU was not ready to include them.

We recognise that onward movement opportunities are an important issue for UK nationals in the EU, and we remain committed to raising this issue during detailed discussion on our future relationship.

Q
Asked by Deidre Brock
(Edinburgh North and Leith)
Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Brexit
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, pursuant to the Answer of 28 June 2017 to Question 250, if he will publish the agreements which will require replacement as a result of the UK’s exit from the EU.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The EU Treaties Office Database lists Treaties relating to our EU membership: http://ec.europa.eu/world/agreements/default.home.do. Not all of these treaties require action when we leave the EU.

We are committed to maintaining the relationships and cooperation we currently enjoy with third countries and international organisations as we exit the EU. This is why we have agreed with the EU that during the implementation period, the UK is to be treated as a Member State for the purposes of its international agreements. We are also working with international partners to put in place successor agreements that replicate the effects of existing agreements as far as possible and which will come into force following the implementation period.

We will continue to keep Parliament updated on the progress of delivering continuity of our international agreements as we prepare to leave the EU.

Q
Asked by Nigel Dodds
(Belfast North)
Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Northern Ireland Government
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what advice was commissioned on the implications of the proposed EU Withdrawal agreement for the operation and powers of institutions established under the Belfast Agreement.
A
Answered by: Mr Robin Walker
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Throughout the negotiations, the UK Government has been unwavering in its commitment to upholding the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement in all its parts. This is a commitment we have upheld in full in the Northern Ireland Protocol.

As the Attorney-General sets out in his legal commentary, the objectives of the Protocol, as set out at Article 1(3), are to address the unique circumstances on the island of Ireland, maintain North-South cooperation, avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland, and protect the Belfast Agreement in all its dimensions.

This includes the ongoing operation of the institutions the Belfast Agreement establishes. For example, Article 13 requires the Protocol to be implemented and applied so as to maintain the necessary conditions for continued North-South cooperation. But the provision does not alter the remit or functions of the North-South Ministerial Council or the North-South Implementation bodies.

Q
Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Gambling: Internet
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) Belgium's decision to ban loot boxes in online games, and (2) the social impact adopting a similar policy would have on reducing gambling related harm in the UK.
A
Answered by: Lord Ashton of Hyde
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Loot boxes do not fall under gambling law where the in-game items acquired are confined for use within the game and cannot be cashed out. However, the Government is aware of concerns that entertainment products, such as some video games, could encourage gambling-like behaviour, and will continue to look closely at any evidence around this issue.

We welcome the recent introduction by the VSC Ratings Board and PEGI of a new label for video games to warn parents where they include the opportunity to make in-game purchases.

The Gambling Commission, as the regulator for gambling in Great Britain, has strong powers and can take action where it needs to address emerging risks.

In September 2018, the Gambling Commission published a declaration signed by 16 gambling regulators, which outlined common concerns around gaming and gambling. The regulators agreed to work together to monitor the characteristics of video games and social gaming and where there is potential cross-over into gambling.

Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Perinatal Mortality
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of NHS England's estimate that 600 stillbirths could be prevented annually as a result of implementation of the Saving Babies' Lives Care Bundle; and whether any such assessment has taken account of the failure to include within the Saving Babies' Lives Care Bundle a specific element on twin and multiple births and the higher rates of mortality that occur in twin and multiple births.
A
Answered by: Lord O'Shaughnessy
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Department welcomes the independent Saving Babies’ Lives Project Impact and Results Evaluation (SPiRE), published earlier this year and commissioned by NHS England.

The report found that maternity staff have helped save more than 160 babies’ lives across 19 maternity units where the Saving Babies Lives Care Bundle had been implemented. The best practice guidance is now being introduced across the country and has the potential if these findings were replicated, to prevent an estimated 600 stillbirths.

In 2017, the Department funded the Twins and Multiple Births Association’s Maternity Engagement Project. The results from the interim report suggest that increased adherence to National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance gave better outcomes for multiple births. This further reinforces the Department’s expectation that all health professionals working with multiple pregnancies adhere to the relevant NICE guidance.

We look forward to reviewing the final project report, which we understand is due for publication in mid-2019.

Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Secure Psychiatric Units
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to address the lack of secure NHS facilities for offenders who are suffering from mental illness.
A
Answered by: Lord O'Shaughnessy
Answered on: 10 December 2018

We recognise that there are high numbers of people in prison with mental ill health, and it is essential that they are treated in the most appropriate environment for their needs.

Whilst some prisoners may be mentally unwell, and despite sometimes complex emotional and behavioural needs, it may not be clinically appropriate for them to be transferred to a mental health inpatient bed. There may be other services more appropriate to their needs that can be delivered outside inpatient mental health facilities.

However, work is underway to improve mental health services for offenders. NHS England is focussing on an offender mental health pathway which will ensure that offenders are directed to the most appropriate intervention to their needs at the right time in the criminal justice system.

NHS England is carrying out a service review across all adult high, medium and low secure services. The service review is considering a number of issues including the future demand and capacity required against a number of criteria, levels of security, gender, service type and geographical location. A detailed understanding of difficulties in the system in relation to remissions from hospital to prison is being considered so that access, egress and throughput are all improved. This is vital to ensuring that the appropriate capacity is planned for the future.

New service specifications have been published for both low and medium secure hospitals as well as prison mental health services. The Prison Mental Health Specification embeds the Quality Standards for Prison Mental Health Services developed by the Royal College of Psychiatrists to ensure high quality care for all. Draft Guidance for Timely and Appropriate Transfers and Remissions of care to and from a mental health hospital is currently in production.

Asked on: 29 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Health Services: Maximum Security Prisons
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to address the care needs of the increasing number of older prisoners held in high security facilities.
A
Answered by: Lord O'Shaughnessy
Answered on: 10 December 2018

NHS England is responsible for commissioning physical and mental health care in the high security hospitals in England.

The hospitals provide a range of services tailored towards an individual patient’s needs, which includes the care needs of older patients. Each patient has an individualised care plan which includes consideration of age and physical care needs. Occupational therapists lead on the assessment of physical disability and on addressing issues with appropriate aids and adaptations to suit the specific needs of each patient.

Q
Asked by Deidre Brock
(Edinburgh North and Leith)
Asked on: 30 November 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
EU Countries: British Nationals Abroad
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, how many UK citizens currently resident elsewhere in the EU his Department expects to return to the UK as a result of the UK leaving the EU.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Withdrawal Agreement, and the detailed political declaration on the terms of our future relationship, include protection for the rights of citizens, including UK citizens currently living in the EU. There should therefore be no need for UK citizens to return as a result of the UK leaving the EU.

Q
(Gainsborough)
Asked on: 30 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Abortion
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many reports of serious incidents at British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinics there have been in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Information on reports of serious incidents at British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinics and the number of women transferred to National Health Service trusts for emergency care after attending a British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinic is not reported to the Department. Serious incident notifications are sent to the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which is responsible for ensuring that requirements under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 are met by the providers of termination of pregnancy services including meeting the fundamental standards of quality and safety as set out in Part 3 to the 2014 Regulations, and Regulation 20 of the Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009, which is specific to independent sector termination of pregnancy providers.

In addition, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has the power to approve independent sector providers to perform termination of pregnancy. All approved clinics must agree to comply with the Secretary of State’s requirements in the form of Required Standard Operating Principles.

The CQC inspection report of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) Merseyside identified a number of areas of concern regarding all areas of operation at the service. These concerns were addressed locally through a joint action plan between BPAS Merseyside, the CQC and Halton Clinical Commissioning Group. The CQC monitors the action plan through ongoing engagement with BPAS Merseyside.

Grouped Questions: 197591 | 197592
Q
(Gainsborough)
Asked on: 30 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Abortion
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many women have been transferred to NHS Trusts for emergency care after attending a British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinic in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Information on reports of serious incidents at British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinics and the number of women transferred to National Health Service trusts for emergency care after attending a British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinic is not reported to the Department. Serious incident notifications are sent to the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which is responsible for ensuring that requirements under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 are met by the providers of termination of pregnancy services including meeting the fundamental standards of quality and safety as set out in Part 3 to the 2014 Regulations, and Regulation 20 of the Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009, which is specific to independent sector termination of pregnancy providers.

In addition, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has the power to approve independent sector providers to perform termination of pregnancy. All approved clinics must agree to comply with the Secretary of State’s requirements in the form of Required Standard Operating Principles.

The CQC inspection report of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) Merseyside identified a number of areas of concern regarding all areas of operation at the service. These concerns were addressed locally through a joint action plan between BPAS Merseyside, the CQC and Halton Clinical Commissioning Group. The CQC monitors the action plan through ongoing engagement with BPAS Merseyside.

Grouped Questions: 197590 | 197592
Q
(Gainsborough)
Asked on: 30 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Abortion
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the report entitled, BPAS Merseyside, published by the Care Quality Commission in January 2017, what steps his Department taking to monitor the quality of care provided at British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinics.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Information on reports of serious incidents at British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinics and the number of women transferred to National Health Service trusts for emergency care after attending a British Pregnancy Advisory Service clinic is not reported to the Department. Serious incident notifications are sent to the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which is responsible for ensuring that requirements under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 are met by the providers of termination of pregnancy services including meeting the fundamental standards of quality and safety as set out in Part 3 to the 2014 Regulations, and Regulation 20 of the Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009, which is specific to independent sector termination of pregnancy providers.

In addition, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has the power to approve independent sector providers to perform termination of pregnancy. All approved clinics must agree to comply with the Secretary of State’s requirements in the form of Required Standard Operating Principles.

The CQC inspection report of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) Merseyside identified a number of areas of concern regarding all areas of operation at the service. These concerns were addressed locally through a joint action plan between BPAS Merseyside, the CQC and Halton Clinical Commissioning Group. The CQC monitors the action plan through ongoing engagement with BPAS Merseyside.

Grouped Questions: 197590 | 197591
Q
Asked by Norman Lamb
(North Norfolk)
[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 November 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Department for Exiting the European Union: Government Chief Scientific Adviser
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, how many meetings (a) he and (b) his predecessor had with his Department’s Chief Scientific Adviser between 1 September and 30 November 2018.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Between 1 September and 30 November 2018, the current Secretary of State met with Chris Jones, Chief Scientific Adviser at DExEU, on two occasions, and his predecessor on ten occasions. It should be noted that this is a dual role for Chris Jones, and is combined with his position as the Director of Justice, Security and Migration.

Q
Asked by Norman Lamb
(North Norfolk)
Asked on: 30 November 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Eating Disorders
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, when NHS England plans to publish the outcome of its review of adult eating disorder services.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The national review of adult eating disorder services that NHS England commissioned in 2017 is now complete.

Data collected on activity, investment and workforce is being reviewed with stakeholders to inform NHS England’s understanding of current provision and existing levels of parity with eating disorder services for children and young people. The data is informing modelling in support of the development of the National Health Service’s long term plan, which will be launched soon.

Any plans for publication of the NHS benchmarking data will be determined in due course.

Q
Asked by Frank Field
(Birkenhead)
Asked on: 03 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Department for Work and Pensions: Email
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether claimants are given the option of receiving all correspondence from her Department via email if they have provided their email address.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Claimants who have a valid reasonable adjustment in place are permitted to receive correspondence from the Department by email should they request it. Claimants who do not have a reasonable adjustment in place are not permitted to receive correspondence from the Department by email as email is not classed as secure and there is an increased risk of data loss which could have a negative impact on both the individual and the Department.

Email must be used as a reasonable adjustment where it is requested by an individual disabled citizen who finds it difficult or impossible to communicate via other channels. Requesting communications via email must be for a valid reason which relates to the individual’s disability. Once email as a reasonable adjustment has been agreed the customer will be advised of the risks of data travelling over the unsecure network and being seen by 3rd parties via the confirmation email ‘disclaimer’ they receive.

Q
(Coventry South)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 03 December 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Brexit
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what contingency plans his Department has made in the event that the (a) EU withdrawal agreement and (b)Political Declaration are not approved by Parliament.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The government has successfully reached a deal with the EU and delivering the deal is its top priority.

The final deal that Parliament will be voting on means that we will leave the EU in a smooth and orderly way on 29 March 2019. It sets the framework for a future relationship that delivers in our national interest. It takes back control of our borders, laws and money, it protects jobs, security and the integrity of the United Kingdom, and it delivers in ways that many said could simply not be done.

Anything other than straightforward approval of the deal will bring with it huge uncertainty for business, consumers and citizens.

However, as a responsible government we have undertaken extensive work over the past two years to prepare for a potential no deal scenario.

We have published 106 technical notices to help businesses and citizens to prepare for March 2019 in the unlikely event that we leave the EU without a deal. In addition to these technical notices, we have already successfully passed critical legislation, signed international agreements, recruited additional staff and guaranteed certain EU funding in preparation for a no deal scenario.

Q
Asked by Robert Halfon
(Harlow)
[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 December 2018
Treasury
LGBT People
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much money the Government has allocated to organisations and groups supporting LGBTQ+ rights in England since 2010.
A
Answered by: Elizabeth Truss
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The UK is recognized as a world leader on LGBT rights. Sexual orientation is one of the nine characteristics protected under the Equality Act 2010, for which the Government Equalities Office (GEO) within DfID is the Government’s lead department. A wide range of government departments have spending in support of LGBT rights. For instance, in 2015, GEO ran a £2.0 million pilot fund to test approaches to effectively tackle homophobic, biphobic and transphobic (HBT) bullying in schools. Following the evaluation of the pilot, the Government is now providing £4.0 million worth of funds from 2016 to 2020 to tackle HBT bullying in schools. However, the information requested on broader funding allocations is not held centrally and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 03 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Post Office Card Account
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many (a) disabled social security recipients and (b) pension recipients have their payments made into a Post Office account.
A
Answered by: Guy Opperman
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Department for Work and Pensions provides Post Office card accounts to ensure that customers can continue to access their benefits and pensions in this way.

As of October 2018 there were just under 1.2m active Post Office card accounts. In line with our wider policy on financial inclusion, we have always made it clear that payment into a bank, building society or credit union is the preferred way for all benefits to be paid.

The information requested about the number of disabled social security and pension recipients is not available.

Grouped Questions: 198724
Q
Asked by Chris Ruane
(Vale of Clwyd)
[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 December 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Brexit
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what representations the Government has received from EU (a) officials and (b) member states on extending Article 50.
A
Answered by: Chris Heaton-Harris
Answered on: 10 December 2018

It is a matter of firm Government policy that Article 50 will not be extended and we will be leaving the EU in a smooth and orderly way on 29 March 2019. The detailed terms set out in the Withdrawal Agreement and Political Declaration has been endorsed by the other EU Member States.

Q
Asked by Keith Vaz
(Leicester East)
Asked on: 03 December 2018
Cabinet Office
Immigrants: EU Nationals
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent estimate he has made of the number of non-UK EU citizens residing in the UK.
A
Answered by: Chloe Smith
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

UKSA response (PDF Document, 70.92 KB)
Q
(Glasgow South West)
Asked on: 03 December 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Syria: Military Intervention
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what diplomatic steps he is taking to encourage the Turkish Government to (a) halt further incursions in to Syrian territory and (b) bring to an end the occupation of Afrin.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The UK Government regularly discusses the Syrian conflict with the Turkish authorities, including recent conversations between the UK Minister for the Middle East and North Africa and his Turkish counterpart. While we recognise Turkey's legitimate interest in the security of its borders, we have raised our concerns that further military operations risk undermining our shared goal of securing the enduring defeat of Daesh. Following military operations in Afrin, we have stressed the need for a sustainable solution for representative local governance, which is acceptable to Turkey and to local communities. We continue to push for a reduction in violence, and for consideration of the humanitarian needs of the population in the affected areas.

Q
(East Londonderry)
[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 December 2018
Department for International Trade
US-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what preparations he is making for meeting with the US-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
A
Answered by: George Hollingbery
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The US-Canada Regulatory Cooperation Council is a bilateral forum for US and Canadian governments to identify and recommend opportunities to enhance regulatory cooperation between the two countries. The Government is continuing to meet with both the United States and Canada to discuss strengthening our trade links, including through regulatory cooperation.

Q
(East Londonderry)
[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 December 2018
Cabinet Office
Pay
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the change was in average full-time salary levels in (a) England, (b) Wales, (c) Scotland and (d) Northern Ireland between 2007 and 2017.
A
Answered by: Chloe Smith
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply and their response will be placed in the Library.

UKSA Response (PDF Document, 29.08 KB)
Q
(Glasgow South 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 December 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Syria: Turkey
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what discussions he has had with his Turkish counterpart on the Turkish invasion of Afrin; the effect of that military operation on civilians in Afrin; and the adequacy of medical (a) services and (b) equipment to treat those civilians.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 10 December 2018

During the Turkish operation in Afrin, the UK Government called for de-escalation of the military conflict and the protection of civilians, while recognising Turkey's legitimate interest in the security of its borders. UK Government Ministers urged their Turkish counterparts to do everything possible to minimise humanitarian suffering including the need to facilitate access for life-saving humanitarian aid in accordance with international humanitarian law.

DFID partners are delivering limited humanitarian assistance in Afrin and to those displaced from the district, where access allows. This includes medical consultations, immunisations and nutrition support for mothers and children.

Q
Asked by Ian Blackford
(Ross, Skye and Lochaber)
[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 December 2018
Scotland Office
Skye Bridge: Tolls
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, whether the Permit to Use the Skye crossing, issued on his behalf by JMP Consultants to Skye Bridge Company on 16 October 1995, is intended to authorise the charging and the collecting of toll monies.
A
Answered by: David Mundell
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Powers in this area, along with all relevant administrative functions and related records, were devolved and transferred to the Scottish Government in 1997.

Q
(Coventry South)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 04 December 2018
Department for Transport
Railways: Standards
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the number of rail passengers who have been delayed by (a) at least (i) 30 minutes and (ii) one hour and (b) more than two hours in the UK in each year since 2010.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Department for Transport (DfT) does not hold estimates of the number of rail passengers who have been delayed by (i) at least thirty minutes, (ii) one hour or more, or (iii) more than two hours each year since 2010.

However, DfT recently published (1 October) the compensation amounts paid by TOCs to passengers for delayed journeys since 2009. It shows the total amount of compensation paid to passengers has risen 80% in the past two years, as the government has increased the requirements of train operators to publicise passengers’ rights.

Q
Asked by Jo Stevens
(Cardiff Central)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 04 December 2018
Wales Office
Cardiff Airport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, whether his Department has made an estimate of the average number of flights each (a) day, (b) week, (c) month and (d) year between Cardiff International Airport and destinations in countries that are signatories to the Open Skies agreement.
A
Answered by: Alun Cairns
Answered on: 10 December 2018

By Open Skies agreement, we have understood the question to refer to the recently agreed Open Skies agreement with the US, which will replace the existing EU aviation agreement with the US. The deal ensures that planes flying from the UK will continue to have the same access they currently have to the US, ensuring the UK maintains its place as one of the world’s leading aviation hubs.

Currently there are no direct scheduled passenger services that run between the US and Cardiff Airport.

Q
Asked by Angela Rayner
(Ashton-under-Lyne)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Pre-school Education: Standards
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate his department has made of the number of children attending early years settings that are rated (a) inadequate and (b) requires improvement.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 10 December 2018

This is a matter for Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman. I have asked her to write to the hon. Member and a copy of her reply will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Q
Asked by Stephen Timms
(East 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: 04 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Post Office Card Account
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many claimants of (a) disability benefits and (b) the state pension have their benefits paid into a Post Office Card Account.
A
Answered by: Guy Opperman
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Department for Work and Pensions provides Post Office card accounts to ensure that customers can continue to access their benefits and pensions in this way.

As of October 2018 there were just under 1.2m active Post Office card accounts. In line with our wider policy on financial inclusion, we have always made it clear that payment into a bank, building society or credit union is the preferred way for all benefits to be paid.

The information requested about the number of disabled social security and pension recipients is not available.

Grouped Questions: 198328
Q
(Slough)
[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 December 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Mental Health Services: Children and Young People
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent steps he has taken to ensure that children and young people have access to adequate mental health treatment.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

This Government is committed to ensuring that children have access to high quality mental health support. We have made an additional £1.4 billion available over the course of 2015/16-2020/21 to transform services and ensure access to specialist mental health services for an additional 70,000 children and young people a year by 2020/21.

We have also introduced two waiting time standards for children and young people. The first aims for 95% of children, up to 19 years old, with eating disorders to receive treatment within a week for urgent cases, and four weeks for routine cases, by 2020. The second is that 50% of patients (of all ages) experiencing a first episode of psychosis receive treatment within two weeks of referral. We are currently exceeding or on track to meet these waiting time standards.

The Green Paper, ‘Transforming children and young people’s mental health provision’, published by the Department for Health and Social Care and the Department for Education, announced creation of new Mental Health Support Teams. These teams will deliver mental health interventions for those with mild to moderate needs in or close to schools and colleges, and refer those with more severe needs on to specialist services. The Green Paper also announced the piloting of a four week waiting time to improve access to National Health Service mental health services, which we will roll out in a number of trailblazer areas alongside the support teams.

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 04 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Social Security Benefits: EU Nationals
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the potential merits of widening the entitlement to UK welfare payments for EU citizens fleeing domestic violence in the UK.
A
Answered by: Alok Sharma
Answered on: 10 December 2018

This Government is committed to tackling violence against all people, including domestic abuse which shatters the lives of victims and families.

EU citizens are permitted to claim income-related benefits if they are legally and habitually resident in the UK and satisfy the eligibility conditions.

The Government’s consultation, ‘Transforming the Response to Domestic Abuse’, which ended in May 2018, sought views on protection and support for victims of domestic abuse, including those with no recourse to public funds. The Home Office is currently analysing the consultation responses and will publish the Government’s response in due course.

Q
(Derby North)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 04 December 2018
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Integrity Initiative
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 3 December 2018 to Question 196177 on Foreign and Commonwealth Office: Integrity Initiative, if he will publish his Department's (a) documents and (b) correspondence on grant agreements for the Integrity Initiative.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The FCO's Counter Disinformation and Media Development Programme is designed to protect national security by countering disinformation directed at the UK and its Allies from Russia. Russia persistently uses disinformation to target its perceived enemies. An example was the Russian disinformation campaign that followed the attack in Salisbury, which was intended to distract from Russian culpability. Documents and correspondence about projects within the Programme will not be published, as this information could then be used to actively attempt to disrupt and undermine the Programme's effectiveness.

Q
Asked by Nia Griffith
(Llanelli)
[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 December 2018
Cabinet Office
Strategic Defence and Security Review
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if his Department will carry out a Strategic Defence and Security Review in 2020.
A
Answered by: Mr David Lidington
Answered on: 10 December 2018

No decision has yet to be made on the timing of the next Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR)

Q
Asked by Norman Lamb
(North Norfolk)
[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 December 2018
Department for International Trade
Department for International Trade: Chief Scientific Advisers
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, how many meetings he had with his Department’s Chief Scientific Adviser between 1 September and 30 November 2018.
A
Answered by: George Hollingbery
Answered on: 10 December 2018

During the requested time period: Department for International Trade (DIT) Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) presented an update to the DIT Board on 19th November, at which my Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State was present as a member of the Board. The CSA updated the Board on his activities during the past year and priorities for 2019.

The Secretary of State and the CSA do meet for bilaterals and the Secretary of State takes a keen interested in the CSA’s work.

Q
Asked by David Simpson
(Upper Bann)
Asked on: 04 December 2018
Attorney General
Brexit: Legal Opinion
Commons
To ask the Attorney General, whether his Department will publish the full legal advice on the EU Withdrawal Agreement before the House votes on the Motion to approve that Agreement on 11 December 2018.
A
Answered by: Robert Buckland
Answered on: 10 December 2018

A copy of the final advice that the Attorney General provided to Cabinet on 14 November on the legal effect of the Withdrawal Agreement was published on 5 December. Copies have been placed in both libraries of the House and can be found online here.

Q
(Motherwell and Wishaw)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 04 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Child Support: Scotland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much child support arrears are concerned in (a) Motherwell and Wishaw, (b) North Lanarkshire Westminster Parliamentary constituencies, and (c) Scotland, under the Child Support (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 10 December 2018

As of June 2018 (most recent published regional data, rounded to nearest thousand), there were the following amounts of unpaid maintenance from Child Support Agency cases:

(a) Motherwell and Wishaw parliamentary constituency - £4,034,000 of child support arrears

(b) North Lanarkshire Local Authority - £17,366,000 of child support arrears

(c) Scotland - £ 225,269,000 of child support arrears

Figures for b and c are published in the regional tables of the Child Support Agency Quarterly Summary of Statistics https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/child-support-agency-quarterly-summary-of-statistics-june-2018

These amounts include all Child Support Agency cases with arrears. This includes cases where recent payments have been made and those where there has been no payment made within the last 3 months. The vast majority of these cases have received no recent payment, and it is only these cases that will be addressed under the Child Support (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018.

Q
(Leeds East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 04 December 2018
Ministry of Justice
Prisons: Restraint Techniques
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many staff were certified to conduct control and restraint at each contracted-out prison in each year since 2010.
A
Answered by: Rory Stewart
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Ministry of Justice does not mandate staffing numbers in privately managed prisons and all staffing matters, including the responsibility for ensuring the availability of sufficiently trained and experienced staff to maintain safe and decent prisons, lies with contractors. This includes ensuring they have sufficient numbers of staff trained in Control and Restraint.

Each privately managed prison has a full-time on-site Controller employed by HM Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS). The Controller has regular review meetings with the contractor against a range of performance indicators that will reflect numbers of staff in post, recruitment, training, sickness, and attrition. Any concerns in relation to these performance indicators are discussed at these meetings. Where action is needed, progress is monitored by the Controller and escalated within HMPPS where appropriate action can be taken in accordance with the contract. This may include a requirement for urgent improvement and/or financial deductions.

Q
(Wirral 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 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Department for Work and Pensions: Telephone Services
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether her Department has contracts with external companies to provide call centre staff to advise social security claimants who contact DWP helplines.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The department has several contracts with external companies to answer calls from social security claimants across a range of DWP helplines.

Details as follows:

Supplier

Contract

Brief Description

Serco

PIP

For customers wishing to make a claim for PIP

UC

For customers requiring an appointment for their UC claim

Warm Home Discount

For Pension Credit customers requiring help with fuel bills

Package B

  • Carers Allowance – for customers wanting a claim pack
  • DLA/AA – for customers wanting a claim pack
  • National Benefit Fraud Helpline – taking details from citizens wanting to report suspected fraud activity
  • NINO appointments - making an appointment for NINO applicants
  • Jobcentre Enquiry Line – for customers wishing to contact a Jobcentre

Support for Mortgage Interest

For customers requiring an Informed Discussion about help with mortgage interest

G4S

CMG Options

For separating parents requiring advice about maintenance options

Package A

  • Pension Credit claims – for customers wishing to claim Pension Credit
  • Pension Credit Enquiries – for customers enquiring about their Pension Credit claim
  • State Pension Enquiries – for customers enquiring about their State Pension claim
  • Winter Fuel Enquiry Line – for customers enquiring about Winter Fuel payments
  • Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) New Claims – for customers wishing to claim JSA
  • Jobseekers Allowance Online (JSAOL) – appointment booking for customers applying for JSA online

Teleperformance

Pension Wise

First point of contact for customers requiring a Pension Wise appointment

Q
Asked by Tim Loughton
(East Worthing and Shoreham)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Foster Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many young people have taken part in the staying put programme in each year since the programme was launched (a) in total and (b) by local authority area.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The latest national information on the number of children who ceased to be looked-after in a foster placement on their 18th birthday who were eligible for care leaver support and were still living with their former foster carer (‘staying put’) at age 19 and 20 are published in table F2 of the statistical publication: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2017-to-2018.

The department has published similar experimental national statistics on those children who still live with their former foster carer at age 18 in table F4 of the same release.

These figures are also disaggregated at local authority level for 2018 in the underlying data tables that accompany this statistical release. Data at local authority level for earlier reporting years is available in the underlying data tables in previous publications for 2017 at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2016-to-2017.

The figures for 2016 are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2015-to-2016.

The figures for 2015 are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2014-to-2015.

The figures for 2014 are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption--2

Information on the average length of time young people took part in the staying put programme is not collected.

Grouped Questions: 198719
Q
Asked by Tim Loughton
(East Worthing and Shoreham)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Foster Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the average length of time young people took part in the staying put programme was in each year since that programme was launched.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The latest national information on the number of children who ceased to be looked-after in a foster placement on their 18th birthday who were eligible for care leaver support and were still living with their former foster carer (‘staying put’) at age 19 and 20 are published in table F2 of the statistical publication: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2017-to-2018.

The department has published similar experimental national statistics on those children who still live with their former foster carer at age 18 in table F4 of the same release.

These figures are also disaggregated at local authority level for 2018 in the underlying data tables that accompany this statistical release. Data at local authority level for earlier reporting years is available in the underlying data tables in previous publications for 2017 at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2016-to-2017.

The figures for 2016 are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2015-to-2016.

The figures for 2015 are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption-2014-to-2015.

The figures for 2014 are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoption--2

Information on the average length of time young people took part in the staying put programme is not collected.

Grouped Questions: 198718
Q
Asked by Tim Loughton
(East Worthing and Shoreham)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Foster Care: Expenditure
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much money has been spent on the staying put programme in each year since that programme was launched (a) in total and (b) by local authority area.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The total amount of funding provided to local authorities to implement Staying Put since its introduction in 2014, and the amount committed for the period of 2019 to 2020, are set out in the table below.

Decisions on funding beyond March 2020 will be subject to the outcome of the next Spending Review.

2014 to 2015

£7.4 millon

2015 to 2016

£14.8 million

2016 to 2017

£22.2 million

2017 to 2018

£22.85 million

2018 to 2019

£23.3 million

2019 to 2020

£23.77 million

Total

£114.32 million

Information on the share of the total funding allocated to each local authority is contained in the annual Grant Determination letters, which are published on GOV.UK. Copies of the letters for the period of 2016 to 2017, 2017 to 2018 and 2018 to 2019 are available at the following hyperlinks:

2016 to 2017: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/625577/staying_put_grant_letter_2016-2017.pdf.

2017 to 2018: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/624325/Staying_Put_Grant_letter_2017-18__1_.pdf.

2018 to 2019: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/704816/Staying_Put_grant_letter_to_LAs_2018-19__.pdf.

Copies of the Grant Determination letters for the period of 2014 to 2015 and 2015 to 2016 are attached in Annex A and Annex B, respectively.

Annex_A_table_for_198939 (Word Document, 165.5 KB)
Annex_B_table_for_198939 (Word Document, 165 KB)
Q
(Enfield, Southgate)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Social Services: Children
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent discussions he has had with Ofsted on the delivery of local authority-run children’s services.
A
Answered by: Nadhim Zahawi
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Ministers and officials at the department meet representatives of Ofsted frequently to discuss the delivery of local authority-run children’s services. I last had such a discussion with Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector in November. I also meet regularly with Ofsted’s National Director for Social Care, most recently in October.

Q
(Liverpool, Wavertree)
[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 December 2018
Treasury
Debts: Advisory Services
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the funding allocated by his Department for local authority-commissioned specialist debt advice services.
A
Answered by: John Glen
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Government does not directly fund the provision of specialist debt advice by local authorities.

Instead, the Government funds the Money Advice Service (MAS) to deliver publicly-funded debt advice, using a levy on the financial services industry.

Following Peter Wyman’s independent review of the funding of debt advice published in January 2018, the Government agreed to increase debt advice funding to MAS to over £56 million this year, enough to provide help to over 530,000 people.

Q
(Leeds East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Ministry of Justice
Prisons: Restraint Techniques
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many staff were certified to conduct control & restraint procedures at each of the contracted-out prisons in each year since 2010.
A
Answered by: Rory Stewart
Answered on: 10 December 2018

I refer the Honourable Member to my response to 198897.

Q
(Leeds East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Ministry of Justice
Police Custody: Death
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many deaths in custody were labelled as non-natural deaths in (a) each year since 2010 and (b) each month since January 2016.
A
Answered by: Rory Stewart
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Figures showing the number of deaths from various causes, broken down by month and year, can be found in the Deaths Data Tool at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/safety-in-custody-quarterly-update-to-june-2018.

Her Majesty's Prison and Probation Service uses the following classifications for cause of death:

  • natural causes;
  • self-inflicted;
  • homicide;
  • other / non-natural; and
  • awaiting further information (where the cause of death is not yet known - as more information becomes available these cases will be reclassified as having been from one of the other causes).

All those deaths that are not in the first and last categories are considered to be non-natural deaths.

It should be noted that the HMPPS system for classifying deaths is used for administrative and statistical purposes, and that it is a coroner’s statutory duty to determine the cause of death in each case through the inquest process.

The Government takes very seriously its responsibility to keep prisoners safe, and we are committed to reducing the incidence of non-natural deaths across the estate. This is why we have established a prison safety programme through which we are taking forward a comprehensive set of actions to improve safety in custody.

Q
(Leeds East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Ministry of Justice
Prison Officers: Recruitment
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many additional prison officers have been recruited since October 2016; and how many of those officers have served for (a) six months, (b) 12 months and (c) 18 months.
A
Answered by: Rory Stewart
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Between 01 October 2016 and 30 September 2018, there were 9,184 band 3-5 officers recruited in HMPPS. Table 1 below shows the breakdown of length of service of these officers.

Table 1 - Number of band 3-5 prison officers1 recruited from 01 October 2016 to 30 September 2018, by length of service2

Headcount of band 3-5 officers

Less than 6 months

3,075

6 to 12 months

2,879

12 to 18 months

1,904

More than 18 months

1,326

Total

9,184

1 Includes Band 3-4 / Prison Officer (incl specialists), Band 4 / Supervising Officer and Band 5 / Custodial Managers.

2 Length of service is calculated from the hire date to either the date they left, or to 30th September 2018 if they are still in post. If an individual left and re-joined within the period, they are only counted once and a total length of service across the period has been calculated for the individual. These figures, therefore, do not reflect continuous service.

Q
Asked by Lucy Powell
(Manchester Central)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Education
Education and Skills Funding Agency: Billing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many related-party transactions over £20,000 there were in the 2017-18 financial year where records are available; what resource the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) plans to allocate to sign off related-party transactions over that amount in the 2018-19 financial year; and what deadline the ESFA plans to set to sign off individual transactions.
A
Answered by: Nick Gibb
Answered on: 10 December 2018

To increase transparency and accountability, from April 2019 academy trusts will be required to declare all Related Party Transactions (RPTs) and to seek the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s (ESFA’s) approval for any worth over £20,000.

Individual trusts’ accounts for 2017-18 are not due to be submitted to the Department until early 2019 and, therefore, the information on numbers of RPTs worth over £20,000 for 2017-18 will not be published. The new process from April 2019 will allow the Department to report on sector-wide RPT use, including volumes of RPTs worth over £20,000.

A dedicated team has been established to administer the new process. This team will be responsible for a range of duties in terms of ensuring compliance with the approval process and ensuring approvals are dealt with, within an appropriate time scale. Guidance to support and underpin the new process will be published on GOV.UK, in advance of April 2019.

Q
(Worsley and Eccles South)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Mental Illness: Community Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what information his Department holds on the number of (a) assertive outreach teams, (b) early intervention in psychosis teams and (c) crisis resolution and home treatment teams in each of the last eight years.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Information on the number of assertive outreach teams is not held centrally.

In order to understand the quality of Early Intervention in Psychosis (EIP) services, EIP teams undertake an audited self-assessment on an annual basis. In 2016/17 and 2017/18, 158 EIP teams took part in this audit. Information on the number of EIP teams prior to 2016/17 is not held centrally.

According to surveys commissioned by Health Education England and NHS England, the number of Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment teams (CRHTTs) has risen from 185 in 2016-17 to 231 in 2017-18. The number of staff working in these teams has risen by more than 1,100 over the same time period. Information on the number of CRHTTs in operation before 2016 is not held centrally.

NHS England commissioned a one-off stocktake of adult and older adult community mental health services in 2017/18. This suggested a total caseload across various community mental health services of just under 700,000 people as at 31 March 2017. This information is not available for previous years.

Grouped Questions: 199378
Q
(Worsley and Eccles South)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Mental Illness: Community Care
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what information his Department holds the caseload of community mental health teams in each of the last eight years.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Information on the number of assertive outreach teams is not held centrally.

In order to understand the quality of Early Intervention in Psychosis (EIP) services, EIP teams undertake an audited self-assessment on an annual basis. In 2016/17 and 2017/18, 158 EIP teams took part in this audit. Information on the number of EIP teams prior to 2016/17 is not held centrally.

According to surveys commissioned by Health Education England and NHS England, the number of Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment teams (CRHTTs) has risen from 185 in 2016-17 to 231 in 2017-18. The number of staff working in these teams has risen by more than 1,100 over the same time period. Information on the number of CRHTTs in operation before 2016 is not held centrally.

NHS England commissioned a one-off stocktake of adult and older adult community mental health services in 2017/18. This suggested a total caseload across various community mental health services of just under 700,000 people as at 31 March 2017. This information is not available for previous years.

Grouped Questions: 199377
Q
Asked by Jo Platt
(Leigh)
[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 December 2018
Cabinet Office
Local Government: Internet
Commons
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent assessment he has made of the number of local authorities utilising a protective domain name system.
A
Answered by: Mr David Lidington
Answered on: 10 December 2018

There are several commercial Protective DNS services available alongside the one provided by the NCSC. We do not hold the figure on how many Departments use these commercial providers and can only provide information for those using the NCSC offer. 143 UK local authorities are actively using NCSC’s Protective DNS service with a further 91 going through the onboarding process. GSG and NCSC are actively working with local authorities to adopt the use of the Protective DNS service.

Q
(Slough)
[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 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Universal Credit
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent assessment she has made of the effect of the introduction of universal credit on the level of claimants’ rent arrears in the (a) private rented and (b) social rented sector.
A
Answered by: Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 10 December 2018

I refer the hon Member to the reply to Question 181577 on 29 October.

Q
(Newcastle upon Tyne North)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Transport
Transport: EU Countries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to The future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union White Paper, published on 12 July 2018, what progress has been made since that white paper was published; and what steps his Department is taking to secure bilateral agreements with (a) France, (b) Belgium and (c) the Netherlands for continued transport of goods and passengers through the Channel Tunnel after the UK leaves the EU.
A
Answered by: Chris Grayling
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Government has agreed in principle the terms of the UK’s smooth and orderly exit from the EU, as set out in the Withdrawal Agreement. The UK has also agreed with the EU the broad terms of our future relationship as set out in the outline Political Declaration.

This includes a commitment to agree bilateral arrangements with Member States to ensure the continued smooth functioning and operation of services through the Channel Tunnel.

The Government is engaging with a range of European counterparts, including relevant Member States, in relation to the continued operation of cross-border rail services, following preparations for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. These discussions are ongoing and include consideration of arrangements needed both following the implementation period, as well as preparations for the unlikely event of no deal.

The Government is committed to supporting the continued success of the Channel Tunnel, including rail freight services that run through it, and we want to see these grow in the future.

The arrangements we are seeking to negotiate bilaterally are intended to ensure that both current operators of passenger and freight services, and any prospective operators seeking to run new services in future, can do so as seamlessly as possible.

Q
(Newcastle upon Tyne North)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Transport
Railways
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to Section 1.7.4 Rail in The future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union White Paper, published on 12 July 2018, how his Department defines the unique characteristics of the UK rail network.
A
Answered by: Chris Grayling
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The uniqueness of the UK rail industry is characterised by its long history of market liberalisation and competition, with more private operators than any other EU country and with parts of our network running to almost full capacity. The UK uses a different gauge and also differs from many of our European neighbours in that our network is largely domestic with only two cross-border services.

Q
(Newcastle upon Tyne North)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Transport
Railways: EU Countries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has made an assessment of the liability for errors in drafting technical standards for interoperability that is currently held by the European Commission under a no-deal scenario.
A
Answered by: Chris Grayling
Answered on: 10 December 2018

In a no-deal scenario, the UK will be a third country unbound by EU law. UK technical specifications for interoperability will be published by the Secretary of State for Transport, and the European Commission will not hold liability for their content. The UK will also have the flexibility to align with or diverge from new technical standards developed by the EU after exit. We will only diverge where there are clear arguments for doing so and after engaging fully with industry to assess the impact. The Department is currently considering issues relating to liability for UK technical standards and continues to engage closely with stakeholders on this point.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Universal Credit: Sheffield
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, with reference to the commencement of universal credit in the Sheffield Woodhouse Jobcentre Plus area on 12 December 2018, if she will guarantee that new claims for that benefit will be paid before Christmas 2018.
A
Answered by: Alok Sharma
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Department has extensive experience of paying claimants over holiday periods. We have also rolled out and paid Universal Credit to significant numbers of claimants over previous Christmas periods.

All new claimants to Universal Credit have always been able to apply for a Universal Credit Advance in their first month if they need some financial support until the first regular payment of Universal Credit is made. This is up to 100% of the indicative award available and can be repaid over 12 months.

We also provide an additional payment of 2 weeks of Housing Benefit to support claimants when they transition to Universal Credit.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Universal Credit: Sheffield
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether she has plans to create a universal credit service centre in Sheffield.
A
Answered by: Alok Sharma
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Every Universal Credit claimant in Sheffield has a dedicated case manager based in the Universal Credit Service Centre in Makerfield.

There are currently no plans to create a new Universal Credit Service Centre in Sheffield

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department for Work and Pensions
Jobcentres: Sheffield
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what estimate she has made of the total (a) cost of (i) redundancy payments, (ii) transfers for staff at the Eastern Avenue Jobcentre Plus site, (iii) travel for those staff and (iv) the alteration work required to the Cavendish Court site and (b) potential proceeds of the sale of the Eastern Avenue Jobcentre Plus site.
A
Answered by: Alok Sharma
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The business case for the merger of Eastern Avenue Jobcentre into Cavendish Court Jobcentre considered the estimated costs of redundancies, excess fares for staff and building work at Cavendish Court Jobcentre.

DWP did not own Eastern Avenue Jobcentre and its future is a matter for the landlord.

Q
(Berwick-upon-Tweed)
[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 December 2018
Treasury
Brexit
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, which Departments will be in receipt of the additional £2 billion he announced for EU exit planning; how much each such Department will receive.
A
Answered by: Elizabeth Truss
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Treasury is discussing EU Exit preparations for 2019/20 with departments and allocations will be announced in due course.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 03 December 2018 to Question 196736 on Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), and with reference to the transition period set out in the Agreement on the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union, if the MHRA will be recognised as an EU competent authority under the EU (a) Medical Devices Directive, (b) in-vitro diagnostic medical devices, and (c) Medical Devices Regulation during the period covered by the Agreement.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The agreement of an implementation period will mean that the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) will continue to be recognised as a European Union competent authority designated under the EU Directives for medical devices, in vitro diagnostic medical devices and active implantable medical devices, during this period.

This is also the case for the new EU Regulations for medical devices and in vitro diagnostic medical devices, which both entered into force in May 2017.

It is possible for a single organisation to have individual notified bodies designated in more than one Member State. The authority within each Member State is responsible for notified bodies based in its own country.

The MHRA is responsible for the designation and monitoring of notified bodies in the United Kingdom, which the response to Question 196736 refers to.

Grouped Questions: 199327
Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[N]
Close

Named Day

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

Asked on: 05 December 2018
Department of Health and Social Care
Medical Equipment: UK Notified Bodies
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 03 December 2018 to Question 196736 on Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), whether the Department's response refers to (a) UK notified bodies licensed by the MHRA and (b) UK notified bodies that have also secured notified body status in other EU states.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The agreement of an implementation period will mean that the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) will continue to be recognised as a European Union competent authority designated under the EU Directives for medical devices, in vitro diagnostic medical devices and active implantable medical devices, during this period.

This is also the case for the new EU Regulations for medical devices and in vitro diagnostic medical devices, which both entered into force in May 2017.

It is possible for a single organisation to have individual notified bodies designated in more than one Member State. The authority within each Member State is responsible for notified bodies based in its own country.

The MHRA is responsible for the designation and monitoring of notified bodies in the United Kingdom, which the response to Question 196736 refers to.

Grouped Questions: 199325
Q
(Tewkesbury)
[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 December 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Slugs: Neonicotinoids
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the National Farmers Union on the potential increase in the number of slugs as a result of ban on the use of neonicotinoids; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: George Eustice
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Ministers have not discussed the issue of a potential increase in the number of slugs with the National Farmers Union.

From 19 December use of the three neonicotinoids clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam will be restricted to greenhouse crops only. The Government supported these restrictions in the light of growing evidence that these pesticides can harm pollinators.

Q
(Tewkesbury)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Classroom Assistants
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent estimate he has made of the number of teaching assistants in (a) Gloucestershire and (b) England; how much his Department has spent on those teaching staff; and what information his Department holds on the nationality of those teaching staff.
A
Answered by: Nick Gibb
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The following table provides the full-time equivalent (FTE) number of teaching assistants and other support staff in service in state funded schools in Gloucestershire local authority and England, as at November 2017.

Number of teaching assistants and other support staff in service in state funded schools in Gloucestershire local authority and England, as at November 2017

FTE Teaching Assistants[1]

FTE Other Support Staff1

Gloucestershire[2]

2,490

1,370

England

262,820

145,270

Source: School Workforce Census

The School Workforce Census does not ask for information on the nationality of school employees. Salary levels for teaching assistants and other support staff are determined locally.

The department publishes information on income and expenditure by schools on the Schools Financial Benchmarking website: https://schools-financial-benchmarking.service.gov.uk.

This includes a category for expenditure on Education support staff, including teaching assistants, childcare staff, foreign language assistants, librarians and other support staff.

[1] Figures have been rounded to the nearest 10.

[2] Figures for Gloucestershire exclude 6 out of 304 schools that did not provide a return for teaching assistants or support staff.

Q
Asked by John Grogan
(Keighley)
[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 December 2018
Department for Transport
Skipton-Colne Railway Line
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to publish the feasibility study into the restoration of the Skipton to Colne railway link.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The feasibility study into the reinstatement of the Skipton-Colne rail link as part of a route for passengers and freight has only very recently been completed. The Government is considering next steps and expects to make an announcement shortly.

Q
Asked by John Grogan
(Keighley)
[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 December 2018
Department for Transport
Railways: North of England
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what the outcome is of his discussions with Northern and Transpennine on their franchise commitments to provide train services on Boxing Day 2018.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 10 December 2018

Under the terms of their Franchise Agreement Arriva Rail North (ARN) were required within 12 months of the start date of the franchise to consult with passengers, user groups, Network Rail, other train operators who operate along the affected routes and other relevant Stakeholders on the potential demand for passenger services on Boxing Day and produce a report. This was submitted to the Rail North Partnership team and highlighted that the direct cost of operation would exceed the estimated revenue, and raised concerns regarding access due to significant engineering activity traditionally carried out at this time of year.

Separately ARN’s Franchise Agreement requires the operation of a minimum of 60 services on Boxing Day from 2018. However, Northern raised concerns about their ability to operate a service on Boxing Day 2018, mainly due to engineering possessions along the routes they wish to operate, and have asked for a derogation until the following year to the current Franchise Agreement which is currently being considered.

Under the terms of their Franchise Agreement TransPennine Express (TPE) were required within 12 months of the start date of the franchise to consult with passengers, user groups, Network Rail, other train operators who operate along the affected routes and other relevant Stakeholders on the potential demand for passenger services on Boxing Day and produce a report. This was submitted to the Rail North Partnership team and recommended that there may be an opportunity to work jointly with ARN and RNP to agree to use funds allocated in the Franchise for future service initiatives (the Service Options Fund) to provide a trial service for a future Boxing day, with terms of such a trial being pre-agreed between the parties.

Unlike ARN, TPE has no obligation under its Franchise Agreement to provide Boxing Day services. Opportunities for funding and delivering such services in the future will be considered alongside other franchise enhancement opportunities.

Q
(Feltham and Heston)
[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 December 2018
Department for Education
Schools: Staff
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what information his Department holds on the total school workforce for the most recent period for which figures are available; and what estimate he has made of the change in the level of that workforce in the last academic year.
A
Answered by: Nick Gibb
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The following table provides the full-time equivalent (FTE) number of staff in service in state funded state schools in November 2016 and November 2017 in England and the number and percentage.

Number of staff in service in state funded state schools in November 2016 and November 2017 in England

2016 FTE
Workforce

2017 FTE
Workforce

Change between
2016 and 2017

% Change between
2016 and 2017

England

957,850

947,060

-10,780

-1.1

Source: School Workforce Census

Q
(Hendon)
Asked on: 10 December 2018
Attorney General
Commons
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment he has made of trends in the number of cases of alleged hate crimes ending before going to court as a result of such complaints being withdrawn.
Q
(Exeter)
Asked on: 10 December 2018
Department for Education
Social Services: Children
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what information his Department holds on how much local authorities overspent on children’s services last year; and how much additional investment for children’s services was announced in Budget 2018.
Q
Asked by Liam Byrne
(Birmingham, Hodge Hill)
[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 December 2018
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of state, What assessment he has made of the accuracy of measures of productivity for the UK creative sector.
Q
Asked by Neil Coyle
(Bermondsey and Old Southwark)
[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 December 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Commons
To ask the Attorney General, with reference to the legal opinion of the European Court of Justice Advocate General that the UK can revoke Article 50 unilaterally, what assessment he has made of whether legislation is needed for the UK to revoke Article 50.
Q
Asked by Ross Thomson
(Aberdeen South)
Asked on: 10 December 2018
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken to reduce the risk of fraud from the availability of personal information on the Companies House database.
Q
Asked by Lord Wigley
Asked on: 21 November 2018
Department for Exiting the European Union
Court of Justice of the European Union
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, under the terms of the draft agreement on the withdrawal of the UK from the EU, in what circumstances they anticipate UK judicial authorities being required to have regard to the case law of the Court of Justice of the EU after the transition period has ended.
A
Answered by: Lord Callanan
Answered on: 07 December 2018

As provided for in Article 4 of the Agreement, where Union law is applied by the Withdrawal Agreement, UK courts will interpret it in conformity with relevant case law handed down by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) before the end of the implementation period. They will also pay due regard to relevant CJEU case law handed down after the end of the implementation period when considering the interpretation and application of the Withdrawal Agreement in UK law.

Q
Asked by Lord Balfe
Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for International Development
Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to sign the UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration in Morocco on 10 December; whether they have consulted other EU Member States on signing the Compact; and whether they intend to seek the views of Parliament before committing themselves to a decision.
A
Answered by: Lord Bates
Answered on: 07 December 2018

Well-managed migration is in everyone’s interests. But uncontrolled migration erodes public confidence, damages economies, and places those on the move in situations of intense vulnerability. The UK is taking significant steps to tackle uncontrolled migration by:

  • Addressing the root causes of migration, through our targeted assistance for livelihoods, healthcare, education and economic development
  • Tackling modern slavery and organised immigration crime
  • Supporting enhanced border management
  • Providing critical humanitarian support and protection for vulnerable migrants, as well as offering voluntary return and vital reintegration support to those wishing to return home
  • Supporting refugees to stay in a first safe country through our humanitarian and development work in Africa, the Middle East and Asia

The Global Compact for Migration is one way in which we are working to ensure that UK migration priorities are embedded throughout the international system. It is a step forward in international co-operation to tackle irregular migration and helpful framework to help us deliver our commitments under the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Compact is not legally binding. Instead, it creates a framework that will allow countries to work together to make migration more beneficial for everyone. It protects every State’s right to determine its own immigration policies, including in areas such as asylum, border controls and returns of illegal migrants.

We have worked closely with our EU colleagues throughout the process and will continue to do so as we approach the intergovernmental launch event in Marrakesh. My colleague the Rt Hon. Alistair Burt MP recently spoke to the APPGs on Migration and Refugees about the Migration Compact.

Q
Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for International Development
Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration; and whether they intend to sign the Compact.
A
Answered by: Lord Bates
Answered on: 07 December 2018

Well-managed migration is in everyone’s interests. But uncontrolled migration erodes public confidence, damages economies, and places those on the move in situations of intense vulnerability. The UK is taking significant steps to tackle uncontrolled migration by:

  • Addressing the root causes of migration, through our targeted assistance for livelihoods, healthcare, education and economic development
  • Tackling modern slavery and organised immigration crime
  • Supporting enhanced border management
  • Providing critical humanitarian support and protection for vulnerable migrants, as well as offering voluntary return and vital reintegration support to those wishing to return home
  • Supporting refugees to stay in a first safe country through our humanitarian and development work in Africa, the Middle East and Asia

The Global Compact for Migration is one way in which we are working to ensure that UK migration priorities are embedded throughout the international system. It is a step forward in international co-operation to tackle irregular migration and helpful framework to help us deliver our commitments under the Sustainable Development Goals.

The Compact is not legally binding. Instead, it creates a framework that will allow countries to work together to make migration more beneficial for everyone. It protects every State’s right to determine its own immigration policies, including in areas such as asylum, border controls and returns of illegal migrants.

We have worked closely with our EU colleagues throughout the process and will continue to do so as we approach the intergovernmental launch event in Marrakesh. My colleague the Rt Hon Alistair Burt MP recently spoke to the APPGs on Migration and Refugees about the Migration Compact.

Q
Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for Transport
Aviation: Allergies
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to publish the results of research carried out by the Civil Aviation Authority into allergen exposure in aircraft cabins; if so, when; and what plans they have to address severe allergic reactions on aircraft.
A
Answered by: Baroness Sugg
Answered on: 07 December 2018

The Civil Aviation Authority has undertaken an evidence review of passenger exposure to peanuts and tree nut allergens on airlines to establish the scientific evidence for the risks, and to identify what mitigation measures, if any, would be appropriate on the basis of the evidence. The report is due to be published before the end of the year.

In its forthcoming Aviation Strategy green paper, the government is proposing a policy to provide consistent standards for allergy sufferers to make certain that consumers know what to expect when they fly.

Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for Education
Education: Asylum
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to help improve the educational attainment of asylum-seeking unaccompanied minors at (1) Key Stage 4 level, and (2) all other key stages.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 07 December 2018

Unaccompanied asylum seeking children are ‘looked-after children’ and local authorities have a duty under the Children Act to promote their education. The government’s statutory guidance ‘Promoting the education of looked-after and previously looked-after children’ attached makes clear that local authorities should have procedures in place to promote and monitor their educational progress. This includes the statutory requirement for local authorities to appoint a Virtual School Head (VSH) to discharge their duty to promote the educational achievement of all looked-after children. The statutory guidance also stresses the importance of providing stability and continuity in education, particularly at Key Stage 4. Looked-after children are one of the groups of pupils that attract Pupil Premium Plus funding. This is additional funding provided to schools to help improve the attainment of looked-after children and close the attainment gap between them and their peers. The VSH monitors how this funding is spent.

The Department for Education has also contributed £1.3 million through the Government’s Controlling Migration Fund over two years, to enable six local authorities to address the education needs of unaccompanied children so that their specific needs can be addressed through their Personal Education Plan. The local authorities are also developing tools and resources to share with all other local authorities through the National Association of Virtual School Headteachers.

Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for Education
English Language: Education
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what data they monitor and assess on students studying English as an additional language.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 07 December 2018

The department monitors and publishes various sets of data relating to pupils in state-funded primary and secondary schools in England who are classed as having English as an additional language (EAL). The most recent statistics on the number of EAL pupils, as identified through the January 2018 school census, are included in the “Schools, pupils and their characteristics” statistical publication, available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2018.

Published statistics also show the academic performance of pupils whose first language is other than English in national assessments during year 1 and at the end of key stage 1, which are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/phonics-screening-check-and-key-stage-1-assessments-england-2018.

Published statistics collected at the end of key stage 2 are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/national-curriculum-assessments-key-stage-2-2017-revised.

Published statistics collected at the end of key stage 4 can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/revised-gcse-and-equivalent-results-in-england-2016-to-2017.

In addition, data on pupil entries to qualifications in English for speakers of other languages are included in the key stage 4 qualification data that can be downloaded from the school performance tables webpages here: https://www.compare-school-performance.service.gov.uk/download-data.

The department also publishes data on the number of adults who are accessing English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses, based on Individualised Learner Record data supplied by further education providers and can be found in table 6 here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/further-education-and-skills-november-2017.

The data sets and analysis found at the above links contain many tables and documents that we are, therefore, unable to attach.

Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for Education
Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to promote character education in schools.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 07 December 2018

World-class education is not only about having the highest standards in academic and technical education, it also means ensuring that education builds character. The government wants children and young people to believe that they can achieve; to have the tenacity to persevere with a task; to be able to recover from adversity; and to link their efforts with uncertain or distant rewards. Developing these character traits means children and young people are more likely to have positive education and labour market outcomes. The department supports young people to participate in a range of activities that can help develop character, such as the National Citizen Service, the Cadet Expansion Programme, and competitive sport.

Almost 500,000 young people have taken part in the National Citizen Service since it was launched in 2011 and we want all young people to have the opportunity to take part in this life changing programme. ​The Cadet Expansion Programme was launched in June 2012 with the aim to deliver 100 new Cadet units in English state‐funded schools by September 2015. This target was achieved ahead of schedule, with 100 approvals by March 2015, and led to a commitment to grow the total number of cadet units parading in schools to a total of 500 units across the UK by April 2020. We are on track to meet this target and there are currently 471 approved units.

Additionally, we are investing £22 million in an Essential Life Skills programme in the 12 Opportunity Areas to enable disadvantaged children and young people living in some of the most deprived parts of the country to participate in regular extra-curricular activities and develop their character and to further drive social mobility.

Ofsted is currently developing proposals for new education inspection arrangements, and plans to consult on these in January 2019. This will include a proposal for a graded judgement on pupils’ personal development. The department is engaging with Ofsted as it develops its proposals, including in relation to coverage of pupil character.

Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for Education
Schools: Accountability
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answers by Lord Agnew of Oulton on 11 July and 20 October (HL9052 and HL10598), when they intend to publish the consultation document on reviewing the school accountability system.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 07 December 2018

It was announced on 9 November that the consultation will take place in the New Year.

The consultation will be focused on considering how schools that might benefit from support can be best identified.

Asked on: 23 November 2018
Department for Education
Maintained Schools
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many new local authority maintained schools have been established since 1 January 2014 as a result of the amalgamation of two or more maintained schools.
A
Answered by: Lord Agnew of Oulton
Answered on: 07 December 2018

Since 1 January 2014, 42 new local authority maintained schools have been established. Of these schools, 25 were established as a result of amalgamation.

The table attached lists the LA maintained schools that have been established since 1 January 2014, alongside the relevant local authority and the reason for establishment. This includes all local authority maintained mainstream provision, but does not include special schools, pupil referral units or LA maintained nursery schools.

This data was obtained from ‘Get Information about Schools’ (GIAS).[1]

It has always been possible to establish a new local authority maintained school, in certain circumstances, under section 10 or section 11 of the Education and Inspections Act 2006. Section 10 proposals require the permission of the Secretary of State prior to their publication.

A ‘new school’ may not always be ‘new provision’, and may be replacement provision following the closure of one or more schools. This includes where a school has opened as a result of an amalgation (where two or more existing schools have closed and have been replaced by a new school), where a school changes its religious character, or where independent schools join the state-maintained sector.

[1] The responsibility for updating GIAS is shared between the Department for Education, local authorities and schools, it changes each day as data is removed and uploaded therefore we are unable to guarantee complete accuracy.

Grouped Questions: HL11762
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