Written statements

Government Ministers and a small number of other Members of the two Houses can make a written statement to one or both Houses.

Written statements are published below shortly after receipt in Parliament. They also reproduced in the next edition of the Daily Report and of Hansard in the relevant House.

Written statements made before 17 November 2014 were published only in Hansard:

Show
Find by:
Close

WSID

Written Statement Indentifying Number – Every written statement in the House of Commons and House of Lords has a WSID per parliamentary session.
Showing 1-20 out of 32
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100
Expand all statements
Print selected
WS
Ministry of Justice
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Robert Buckland (The Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice)
Commons

Justice and Home Affairs post-Council statement

The Justice and Home Affairs Council of the Finnish EU Presidency recently took place in Luxembourg. The JHA Counsellor at the Permanent Representation of the UK to the EU attended Justice Day on 7th October. The UK did not attend Interior Day on 8th October.

The UK Government decided that from 1 September until Brexit day, UK Ministers and officials will only attend EU meetings where the UK has a significant national interest in the outcome of the discussions.

Justice Day began with a discussion on the EU Action against corruption, in the broader context of the debate on rule of law and mutual recognition. All Member States supported the need to take action against corruption. The Presidency concluded that there was support for a new comprehensive EU Strategy or Action Plan. The EU work should bring added value and as such should look first at using its existing tools. Member States also supported the EU becoming a full member of the Group of States against corruption (GRECO), so that the EU Institutions are held to the same standards as GRECO members.

Ministers adopted the supplementary negotiating directives on EU accession to the ECHR. The Commission committed to restarting negotiations as soon as possible, whilst ensuring that the EU would reform its internal rules ahead of agreement with the Council of Europe.

The Council Conclusions on the “EU Charter of Fundamental Rights after 10 Years: a State of Play and future work” were waved through without debate.

During lunch, Ministers discussed the rights of victims of crime, particularly the most vulnerable, including children and victims of domestic and sexual violence. The Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) cited the 2.5 million children across the EU who are involved in criminal proceedings in different forms. The need for a multi-agency approach was noted, with care of victims being about more than the criminal justice system alone. It also entailed medical, social and psychological care. The Presidency concluded that they would consider this issue further at the December Council.

After lunch, the FRA Director presented the ‘Fundamental Rights Challenges in 2020 and Beyond’ paper. Many Member States touched on the importance of the link between rule of law and fundamental rights and the importance of the EU moving forwards on artificial intelligence with a fundamental rights focus.

The Commission then welcomed the progress made following the introduction of the Code of Conduct but called for further work to be done by the next Commission on disinformation and online hate speech.

Ministers also approved the Council Conclusions on Eurojust. Eurojust presented the Counter Terrorism Register which was launched in September. Member States agreed that the register would build upon the spirit of cooperation reached in the 2005 Council Decision to support the work of Eurojust.

The Commission briefed the Council on the latest EU-US senior officials meeting, reiterating the limited mandate due to the ongoing E-Evidence negotiations. The second senior officials meeting would take place in early November to make progress before the EU-US Ministerial on 10th December. Security Commissioner Sir Julian King briefed on the progress made on the Budapest Convention. The Presidency concluded that it would return to the issue in December.

The Commission considered that the appointment of the European Public Prosecutor would give a boost to the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) being set up and reminded participating Member States to nominate their three nominees as to be ready before November 2020.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS16
WS
Ministry of Justice
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Lord Keen of Elie (The Lords Spokesperson)
Lords

Justice and Home Affairs post-Council statement

My right honourable friend the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice (Robert Buckland) has made the following Written Statement:

"The Justice and Home Affairs Council of the Finnish EU Presidency recently took place in Luxembourg. The JHA Counsellor at the Permanent Representation of the UK to the EU attended Justice Day on 7th October. The UK did not attend Interior Day on 8th October.

The UK Government decided that from 1 September until Brexit day, UK Ministers and officials will only attend EU meetings where the UK has a significant national interest in the outcome of the discussions.

Justice Day began with a discussion on the EU Action against corruption, in the broader context of the debate on rule of law and mutual recognition. All Member States supported the need to take action against corruption. The Presidency concluded that there was support for a new comprehensive EU Strategy or Action Plan. The EU work should bring added value and as such should look first at using its existing tools. Member States also supported the EU becoming a full member of the Group of States against corruption (GRECO), so that the EU Institutions are held to the same standards as GRECO members.

Ministers adopted the supplementary negotiating directives on EU accession to the ECHR. The Commission committed to restarting negotiations as soon as possible, whilst ensuring that the EU would reform its internal rules ahead of agreement with the Council of Europe.

The Council Conclusions on the “EU Charter of Fundamental Rights after 10 Years: a State of Play and future work” were waved through without debate.

During lunch, Ministers discussed the rights of victims of crime, particularly the most vulnerable, including children and victims of domestic and sexual violence. The Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) cited the 2.5 million children across the EU who are involved in criminal proceedings in different forms. The need for a multi-agency approach was noted, with care of victims being about more than the criminal justice system alone. It also entailed medical, social and psychological care. The Presidency concluded that they would consider this issue further at the December Council.

After lunch, the FRA Director presented the ‘Fundamental Rights Challenges in 2020 and Beyond’ paper. Many Member States touched on the importance of the link between rule of law and fundamental rights and the importance of the EU moving forwards on artificial intelligence with a fundamental rights focus.

The Commission then welcomed the progress made following the introduction of the Code of Conduct but called for further work to be done by the next Commission on disinformation and online hate speech.

Ministers also approved the Council Conclusions on Eurojust. Eurojust presented the Counter Terrorism Register which was launched in September. Member States agreed that the register would build upon the spirit of cooperation reached in the 2005 Council Decision to support the work of Eurojust.

The Commission briefed the Council on the latest EU-US senior officials meeting, reiterating the limited mandate due to the ongoing E-Evidence negotiations. The second senior officials meeting would take place in early November to make progress before the EU-US Ministerial on 10th December. Security Commissioner Sir Julian King briefed on the progress made on the Budapest Convention. The Presidency concluded that it would return to the issue in December.

The Commission considered that the appointment of the European Public Prosecutor would give a boost to the European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO) being set up and reminded participating Member States to nominate their three nominees as to be ready before November 2020."

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS16
WS
Cabinet Office
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: The Earl of Courtown (Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard (Lords Deputy Chief Whip))
Lords

Office for Veterans' Affairs

My Rt Hon. Friend, the Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office (Oliver Dowden) has today made the following Written Ministerial Statement:

I would like to update the House on the work of the new Office for Veterans’ Affairs, which was announced by the Prime Minister in July.

As the Minister attending Cabinet with responsibility for veterans, I have been appointed to oversee the Office with the Minister for Defence People and Veterans.

Veterans have offered to make the ultimate sacrifice in defence of our country, so the Government has a moral duty to them and their loved ones to provide the best possible support after they leave service.

Our ambition is for the UK to be the best place in the world to be a veteran and the Office for Veterans’ Affairs will be a champion for our ex-servicemen and women at the centre of government. It will promote the outstanding contribution veterans are already making to our economy and society and ensure no individual who needs help is left behind after they leave service.

As part of the recent spending round, £5 million of Government funding was secured to staff and resource the new Office.

Colonel (Retired) David Richmond CBE has now been appointed as the Head of the Office for Veterans’ Affairs and has started work in the Cabinet Office this week. David Richmond was the most senior officer injured in combat in Afghanistan and subsequently became the Director of Recovery at Help for Heroes.

One of the Office’s first tasks will be to produce a detailed work programme informed by the responses to the government consultation on the Strategy for our Veterans. David Richmond and his team will be engaging widely with veterans, charities, the Devolved Administrations, local authorities and Parliamentarians so that the work of the Office reflects the needs of veterans and their families, with a particular focus on:

  • Pulling together all functions of Government, and better collaboration with charity sector provision, in order to ensure this Nation’s life-long duty to those who have served

  • Ensuring that every single veteran and their family knows where to turn to access support if required

  • Helping to generate a ‘single view of the veteran’ by making better use of data to understand veterans’ needs and where gaps in provision exist

  • Improving the perception of veterans and showcasing the brilliant contribution they make after leaving service.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS15
WS
Home Office
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Baroness Williams of Trafford (The Minister of State, Home Office)
Lords

Government Response to the SNP Opposition Day Debate - A Fair Immigration System

My hon Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Immigration (Seema Kennedy) has today made the following Written Ministerial Statement:

People from all over the world have come to the UK and helped make this nation what it is today, and this Government welcomes the contribution migrants make to the UK’s economy, society and culture.

Leaving the EU allows us to introduce a new points-based immigration system and we have commissioned the independent Migration Advisory Committee to conduct a review of the Australian immigration system and other international comparators, as the first step in creating our new fairer immigration system.

The new immigration system will be a single system, where it is people’s skills that matter, not where they come from. For example, our new Graduate route will be open to international students who have successfully completed a course of study in any subject at undergraduate level or above at an approved UK Higher Education Provider. It will build on action to help recruit and retain the best and brightest global talent.

But a fair system also means a controlled system. My Right Honourable Friend, the Prime Minister, has confirmed he is not getting into a numbers game in respect of migration, but it is only fair to those who play by the rules and everyone else that those working, living and accessing public services are doing so legally. It is right that the system distinguishes effectively between those with lawful status and those here illegally.

In that respect, we are keen to ensure that the experiences of the Windrush generation are not repeated. One of the key lessons we have learnt is that declaratory systems do not work. The EU Settlement Scheme means that, in years to come, EU citizens will always have the evidence that they need to continue living in the UK as they do now. Simply to grant all EU citizens a status in law, and not require them to obtain evidence of this, would significantly increase the risk of another Windrush.

The EU Settlement Scheme, is a fair, simple and straightforward system for EU citizens to secure their immigration status in UK law. The system is working well, and the latest internal figures show we have received two million applications and are processing up to 20,000 a day.

Settled and pre-settled status reflects the residence rights that EU citizens currently have under EU free movement rules. EU citizens resident in the UK for less than five years can get pre-settled status, which protects their current rights to live, work, receive benefits and access services, qualifying for settled status once five years residence is complete.

Fairness also means ensuring we provide protection to those most in need of it. This Government has great respect for human rights and has evidenced this through a long and proud history of supporting refugees and other vulnerable people. Over 75,000 individuals have been granted some form of protection since 2010.

In 2015 we committed to resettle up to 20,000 refugees affected by the conflict in Syria by 2020 – and we are well over three-quarters of the way there, resettling over 17,000. We have re-affirmed this commitment to resettlement beyond the current commitments by creating a new consolidated global resettlement scheme, resettling in the region of 5,000 refugees in its first year of operation.

Immigration is a reserved matter and this Government believes it is right that it stays that way, but we do recognise the need for some regional variation, which is why Scotland already benefits from a separate Shortage Occupation List.

It is also why, earlier this year, we commissioned the MAC to advise on issues concerning potential future salary thresholds.

This Government believes that a controlled immigration system that serves the best interests of the whole of the UK, that rewards hard work and talent, that is based on a person’s skills and what they have to offer rather than where they come from; and that provides protection to the most vulnerable, is a system that constitutes fairness. That is the system that this Government is working to deliver.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS14
WS
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Viscount Younger of Leckie (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government)
Lords

Domestic Abuse Support

My Rt Hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (Robert Jenrick) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

My Department has published the government response to the consultation on the Future Delivery of Support for Victims and their Children in Accommodation-Based Domestic Abuse Services.

Through the consultation we heard from victims and survivors, service providers, local authorities and other public agencies, as well as other professionals who support victims including children every day. All responses to the consultation were carefully considered – I am grateful to everyone who took the time to respond, providing vital insight and evidence.

The majority of respondents agreed with the proposals as set out. Government will therefore introduce a statutory duty on local authorities, placing clearer accountability on local areas to ensure the needs of survivors and victims within safe accommodation are met in a consistent way across England. By introducing this statutory duty, we want to ensure all victims of domestic abuse are able to access support within safe accommodation that meets their specific individual needs. All victims, no matter their background, should feel safe and supported as they recover from this terrible crime.

Under this new duty Tier One authorities (County Councils, Metropolitan, and Unitary Authorities, and the Greater London Authority) in England will be required to convene a Local Domestic Abuse Partnership Board to support them in undertaking local needs assessments and developing local strategies. Tier One authorities will also be required to effectively commission services based on a robust needs assessment, and report back to Government demonstrating how they have met the needs identified. The duty will also require Tier Two authorities in two-tier areas (District, City, and Borough Councils) to co-operate with the lead Tier One authority.

To support local authorities, my department will develop statutory guidance which will set out government’s expectations of local authorities in delivering this duty. We will also establish a ministerial-led National Steering Group to monitor and evaluate delivery of support within safe accommodation – working closely with the newly appointed Domestic Abuse Commissioner.

The full response can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/support-for-victims-of-domestic-abuse-in-safe-accommodation

The Domestic Abuse Bill demonstrates the Government’s commitment to supporting all victims of domestic abuse. The Government will now introduce this new statutory duty as an amendment to the Domestic Abuse Bill at the earliest opportunity, to enable proper parliamentary scrutiny.

My officials will continue to work closely with local authorities, national organisations, and specialist domestic abuse service providers to ensure the proposals are effectively delivered on the ground.

I am also pleased to announce ahead of this new duty coming into force in 2021, that we are confirming today a further domestic abuse accommodation services funding round for 2020/21. Councils will be invited to bid for a share of £15 million – a 20% increase on 2019/20 – to ensure essential support services are able to run for those that need them.

A copy of the Government response to the consultation will be placed in the Library of the House.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS10
WS
Cabinet Office
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Oliver Dowden (Paymaster General and Minister for Cabinet Office)
Commons

Office for Veterans' Affairs

I would like to update the House on the work of the new Office for Veterans’ Affairs, which was announced by the Prime Minister in July.

As the Minister attending Cabinet with responsibility for veterans, I have been appointed to oversee the Office with the Minister for Defence People and Veterans.

Veterans have offered to make the ultimate sacrifice in defence of our country, so the Government has a moral duty to them and their loved ones to provide the best possible support after they leave service.

Our ambition is for the UK to be the best place in the world to be a veteran and the Office for Veterans’ Affairs will be a champion for our ex-servicemen and women at the centre of government. It will promote the outstanding contribution veterans are already making to our economy and society and ensure no individual who needs help is left behind after they leave service.

As part of the recent spending round, £5 million of Government funding was secured to staff and resource the new Office.

Colonel (Retired) David Richmond CBE has now been appointed as the Head of the Office for Veterans’ Affairs and has started work in the Cabinet Office this week. David Richmond was the most senior officer injured in combat in Afghanistan and subsequently became the Director of Recovery at Help for Heroes.

One of the Office’s first tasks will be to produce a detailed work programme informed by the responses to the government consultation on the Strategy for our Veterans. David Richmond and his team will be engaging widely with veterans, charities, the Devolved Administrations, local authorities and Parliamentarians so that the work of the Office reflects the needs of veterans and their families, with a particular focus on:

  • Pulling together all functions of Government, and better collaboration with charity sector provision, in order to ensure this Nation’s life-long duty to those who have served

  • Ensuring that every single veteran and their family knows where to turn to access support if required

  • Helping to generate a ‘single view of the veteran’ by making better use of data to understand veterans’ needs and where gaps in provision exist

  • Improving the perception of veterans and showcasing the brilliant contribution they make after leaving service.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS15
WS
Home Office
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Seema Kennedy (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Immigration)
Commons

Government Response to the SNP Opposition Day Debate - A Fair Immigration System

People from all over the world have come to the UK and helped make this nation what it is today, and this Government welcomes the contribution migrants make to the UK’s economy, society and culture.

Leaving the EU allows us to introduce a new points-based immigration system and we have commissioned the independent Migration Advisory Committee to conduct a review of the Australian immigration system and other international comparators, as the first step in creating our new fairer immigration system.

The new immigration system will be a single system, where it is people’s skills that matter, not where they come from. For example, our new Graduate route will be open to international students who have successfully completed a course of study in any subject at undergraduate level or above at an approved UK Higher Education Provider. It will build on action to help recruit and retain the best and brightest global talent.

But a fair system also means a controlled system. My Right Honourable Friend, the Prime Minister, has confirmed he is not getting into a numbers game in respect of migration, but it is only fair to those who play by the rules and everyone else that those working, living and accessing public services are doing so legally. It is right that the system distinguishes effectively between those with lawful status and those here illegally.

In that respect, we are keen to ensure that the experiences of the Windrush generation are not repeated. One of the key lessons we have learnt is that declaratory systems do not work. The EU Settlement Scheme means that, in years to come, EU citizens will always have the evidence that they need to continue living in the UK as they do now. Simply to grant all EU citizens a status in law, and not require them to obtain evidence of this, would significantly increase the risk of another Windrush.

The EU Settlement Scheme, is a fair, simple and straightforward system for EU citizens to secure their immigration status in UK law. The system is working well, and the latest internal figures show we have received two million applications and are processing up to 20,000 a day.

Settled and pre-settled status reflects the residence rights that EU citizens currently have under EU free movement rules. EU citizens resident in the UK for less than five years can get pre-settled status, which protects their current rights to live, work, receive benefits and access services, qualifying for settled status once five years residence is complete.

Fairness also means ensuring we provide protection to those most in need of it. This Government has great respect for human rights and has evidenced this through a long and proud history of supporting refugees and other vulnerable people. Over 75,000 individuals have been granted some form of protection since 2010.

In 2015 we committed to resettle up to 20,000 refugees affected by the conflict in Syria by 2020 – and we are well over three-quarters of the way there, resettling over 17,000. We have re-affirmed this commitment to resettlement beyond the current commitments by creating a new consolidated global resettlement scheme, resettling in the region of 5,000 refugees in its first year of operation.

Immigration is a reserved matter and this Government believes it is right that it stays that way, but we do recognise the need for some regional variation, which is why Scotland already benefits from a separate Shortage Occupation List.

It is also why, earlier this year, we commissioned the MAC to advise on issues concerning potential future salary thresholds.

This Government believes that a controlled immigration system that serves the best interests of the whole of the UK, that rewards hard work and talent, that is based on a person’s skills and what they have to offer rather than where they come from; and that provides protection to the most vulnerable, is a system that constitutes fairness. That is the system that this Government is working to deliver.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS14
WS
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Baroness Barran (Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
Lords

ONLINE HARMS

My Rt Hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (Nicky Morgan) has today made the following Written Ministerial Statement:



Protecting children is at the heart of our online harms agenda, and is key to wider government priorities. Going online can be beneficial for children, who use the internet for connecting with peers, to access educational resources and for entertainment. However, the government is concerned about the prevalence of adult content online, which is easily accessible to children, and believes it is vital that children are protected from accessing inappropriate, harmful content.

The government published the Online Harms White Paper in April this year. It proposed the establishment of a duty of care on companies to improve online safety, overseen by an independent regulator with strong enforcement powers to deal with non-compliance. Since the White Paper’s publication, the government’s proposals have continued to develop at pace. The government announced as part of the Queen’s Speech that we will publish draft legislation for pre-legislative scrutiny. It is important that our policy aims and our overall policy on protecting children from online harms are developed coherently in view of these developments with the aim of bringing forward the most comprehensive approach possible to protecting children.

The government has concluded that this objective of coherence will be best achieved through our wider online harms proposals and, as a consequence, will not be commencing Part 3 of the Digital Economy Act 2017 concerning age verification for online pornography. The Digital Economy Act objectives will therefore be delivered through our proposed online harms regulatory regime. This course of action will give the regulator discretion on the most effective means for companies to meet their duty of care. As currently drafted, the Digital Economy Act does not cover social media platforms.

The government’s commitment to protecting children online is unwavering. Adult content is too easily accessed online and more needs to be done to protect children from harm. We want to deliver the most comprehensive approach to keeping children safe online and recognised in the Online Harms White Paper the role that technology can play in keeping all users, particularly children, safe. We are committed to the UK becoming a world-leader in the development of online safety technology and to ensure companies of all sizes have access to, and adopt, innovative solutions to improve the safety of their users. This includes age verification tools and we expect them to continue to play a key role in protecting children online.


We will continue to engage with members of Parliament on the provisions of the online harms regime to ensure the most comprehensive online harms proposals which deliver on the objectives of the Digital Economy Act.

WS
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Nicky Morgan (Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
Commons

ONLINE HARMS

Protecting children is at the heart of our online harms agenda, and is key to wider government priorities. Going online can be beneficial for children, who use the internet for connecting with peers, to access educational resources and for entertainment. However, the government is concerned about the prevalence of adult content online, which is easily accessible to children, and believes it is vital that children are protected from accessing inappropriate, harmful content.

The government published the Online Harms White Paper in April this year. It proposed the establishment of a duty of care on companies to improve online safety, overseen by an independent regulator with strong enforcement powers to deal with non-compliance. Since the White Paper’s publication, the government’s proposals have continued to develop at pace. The government announced as part of the Queen’s Speech that we will publish draft legislation for pre-legislative scrutiny. It is important that our policy aims and our overall policy on protecting children from online harms are developed coherently in view of these developments with the aim of bringing forward the most comprehensive approach possible to protecting children.

The government has concluded that this objective of coherence will be best achieved through our wider online harms proposals and, as a consequence, will not be commencing Part 3 of the Digital Economy Act 2017 concerning age verification for online pornography. The Digital Economy Act objectives will therefore be delivered through our proposed online harms regulatory regime. This course of action will give the regulator discretion on the most effective means for companies to meet their duty of care. As currently drafted, the Digital Economy Act does not cover social media platforms.

The government’s commitment to protecting children online is unwavering. Adult content is too easily accessed online and more needs to be done to protect children from harm. We want to deliver the most comprehensive approach to keeping children safe online and recognised in the Online Harms White Paper the role that technology can play in keeping all users, particularly children, safe. We are committed to the UK becoming a world-leader in the development of online safety technology and to ensure companies of all sizes have access to, and adopt, innovative solutions to improve the safety of their users. This includes age verification tools and we expect them to continue to play a key role in protecting children online.

We will continue to engage with members of Parliament on the provisions of the online harms regime to ensure the most comprehensive online harms proposals which deliver on the objectives of the Digital Economy Act.

WS
Department of Health and Social Care
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Baroness Blackwood of North Oxford (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Lords))
Lords

Publication of Professor Sir Mike Richards’ Review of National Adult Screening Programmes

My Rt Hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care (Matt Hancock) has made the following written statement:

I would like to inform the House that Professor Sir Mike Richards’ review of adult screening has been published today. The review was commissioned in November 2018, following two high-profile screening incidents in the NHS breast and cervical cancer screening programmes.

Screening is an essential component of early diagnosis and a way of preventing more serious ill-health or death. Professor Richards’ recognises the value of our national screening programmes, which result in over 10 million screening appointments and save approximately 10,000 lives each year. The success of our programmes is in large part due to the expertise and dedication of staff across the NHS and Public Health England (PHE).

However, there is a serious need to improve the existing arrangements to achieve our vision for effective screening programmes and to harness powerful new technologies. We will use the findings from Professor Richards’ review, and other recent independent screening reviews, to inform the actions we need to take to improve our screening programmes and save even more lives.

I agree that there is a need for robust governance and clarity of responsibility and accountability for the different elements of screening. Working closely with Public Health England and NHS England we will ensure functions are located in the best place to deliver a high-quality service, building on the joint work that both organisations have already been implementing. I also agree it is important that screening programmes receive independent external scrutiny and we will continue to work with PHE and NHS England to design an optimum quality assurance process.

I agree with Professor Richards that there should be a single source of national expert advice on both population-wide and targeted screening. Public Health England, our national public health agency, hosts world-class scientific and expert advice on screening and will host this function, building on its current role providing support to the UK National Screening Committee. I have asked the Chief Medical Officer for England, Professor Chris Whitty, to work with his counterparts across the UK to consider the detail of the proposed new advisory mechanism and how it could meet the needs of all four UK countries. By extending and consolidating our arrangements for providing independent expert advice on all screening programmes, we will improve delivery and exploit the huge scientific progress that is being made to deliver faster and better access to the latest and best screening interventions. NHS England will become the single body responsible for the delivery of screening services.

I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the invaluable advice received from the current UK National Screening Committee on both existing and potential screening programmes to ensure the programmes achieve the right balance of benefit versus harm and that our national screening programmes are effective and of high quality.

In his report, Professor Richards also notes the need for significant investment in diagnostic capacity. I have recently announced £200m investment in new cancer screening equipment, including x-ray mammography machines and MRI and CT scanners, with priority given to replacing the oldest machines with new cutting-edge technology. This will significantly improve the ability of the NHS to diagnose cancer and will support the commitment in the NHS Long-term Plan to ensure 55,000 more people survive cancer each year.

I recognise the immense value that research adds to our understanding of screening and I am determined to ensure we use cutting-edge data techniques. NHSX will lead the vital work to drive this forward to save more lives.

Professor Richards has delivered a significant body of work, together with a substantial number of recommendations. His full recommendations will need further consideration, taking into account the potential impact on current service delivery to ensure any changes can be delivered safely and consistently. We will consider the review’s report and recommendations and develop an implementation plan, which we will publish in due course.

I would like to record my thanks to Professor Richards for his report, and to colleagues across the health system who have contributed, and to pay tribute to all those who work to deliver the screening system across the country.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS11
WS
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Lord Duncan of Springbank (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Minister for Climate Change)
Lords

Professional Qualifications and the Common Travel Area

My Rt hon friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (Andrea Leadsom) has today made the following statement:

As set out in the Memorandum of Understanding signed on 8 May 2019, the Common Travel Area between the UK and Ireland means that British citizens in Ireland and Irish citizens in the UK can work in either country,  including  on a self-employed basis, without any requirement to obtain permission from the authorities.

Her Majesty’s Government  remains committed to ensuring the continuation of adequate and appropriate provisions to enable the recognition of Irish professional qualifications in the UK after Brexit.

We seek to build on the highly effective working relationships that currently exist between the UK and Ireland in this area.  Many professional bodies and regulators in the UK and Ireland have close and longstanding  links, rooted in mutual trust and familiarity. Some operate as a single body across jurisdictions.  The Government  will support and encourage continued close collaboration and communication between UK and Irish regulators.

My department, along with colleagues across Whitehall, have been working closely with UK regulators and professional bodies to ensure that, as far as possible, there are appropriate systems and procedures in place for the recognition of Irish professional qualifications, whether through retained EU legislation or alternative profession-specific pathways. Some individuals will continue to benefit from bilateral arrangements already in place between UK and Irish regulators.

We recognise that it is in our mutual interest to ensure that these routes to recognition are in place to allow Irish professionals to continue in their important participation within the UK economy.

Her Majesty’s Government will continue to encourage UK and Irish regulators to work together to strengthen their relationships and minimise the impact on individuals of any necessary changes after EU Exit. By building on longstanding relationships and established good practice we seek to ensure minimal disruption for all stakeholders.

Finally, Her Majesty’s Government would like to reassure professionals with Irish qualifications who have already had those qualifications recognised in the UK under the current EU Directives, that their recognition decisions will still stand and they will continue to be recognised.

This statement has also been made in the House of Commons: HCWS12
WS
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Andrea Leadsom (Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
Commons

Professional Qualifications and the Common Travel Area

As set out in the Memorandum of Understanding signed on 8 May 2019, the Common Travel Area between the UK and Ireland means that British citizens in Ireland and Irish citizens in the UK can work in either country,  including  on a self-employed basis, without any requirement to obtain permission from the authorities.

Her Majesty’s Government  remains committed to ensuring the continuation of adequate and appropriate provisions to enable the recognition of Irish professional qualifications in the UK after Brexit.

We seek to build on the highly effective working relationships that currently exist between the UK and Ireland in this area.  Many professional bodies and regulators in the UK and Ireland have close and longstanding  links, rooted in mutual trust and familiarity. Some operate as a single body across jurisdictions.  The Government  will support and encourage continued close collaboration and communication between UK and Irish regulators.

My department, along with colleagues across Whitehall, have been working closely with UK regulators and professional bodies to ensure that, as far as possible, there are appropriate systems and procedures  in place  for  the  recognition of Irish professional qualifications, whether through retained EU legislation or alternative profession-specific pathways. Some individuals will continue to benefit from bilateral arrangements already in place between UK and Irish regulators.

We recognise that it is in our mutual interest to ensure that these routes to recognition are in place to allow Irish professionals to continue in their important participation within the UK economy.

Her Majesty’s Government will continue to encourage UK and Irish regulators to work together to strengthen their relationships and minimise the impact on individuals of any necessary changes after EU Exit.  By building on longstanding relationships and  established  good practice we seek to ensure minimal disruption for all stakeholders.

Finally, Her Majesty’s Government would like to reassure professionals with Irish qualifications who have already had those qualifications recognised in the UK under the current EU Directives, that their recognition decisions will still stand and they will continue to be recognised.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS10
WS
Department of Health and Social Care
Made on: 16 October 2019
Made by: Matt Hancock (Secretary of State for Health and Social Care)
Commons

Publication of Professor Sir Mike Richards’ Review of National Adult Screening Programmes

I would like to inform the House that Professor Sir Mike Richards’ review of adult screening has been published today. The review was commissioned in November 2018, following two high-profile screening incidents in the NHS breast and cervical cancer screening programmes.

Screening is an essential component of early diagnosis and a way of preventing more serious ill-health or death. Professor Richards’ recognises the value of our national screening programmes, which result in over 10 million screening appointments and save approximately 10,000 lives each year. The success of our programmes is in large part due to the expertise and dedication of staff across the NHS and Public Health England (PHE).

However, there is a serious need to improve the existing arrangements to achieve our vision for effective screening programmes and to harness powerful new technologies. We will use the findings from Professor Richards’ review, and other recent independent screening reviews, to inform the actions we need to take to improve our screening programmes and save even more lives.

I agree that there is a need for robust governance and clarity of responsibility and accountability for the different elements of screening. Working closely with Public Health England and NHS England we will ensure functions are located in the best place to deliver a high-quality service, building on the joint work that both organisations have already been implementing. I also agree it is important that screening programmes receive independent external scrutiny and we will continue to work with PHE and NHS England to design an optimum quality assurance process.

I agree with Professor Richards that there should be a single source of national expert advice on both population-wide and targeted screening. Public Health England, our national public health agency, hosts world-class scientific and expert advice on screening and will host this function, building on its current role providing support to the UK National Screening Committee. I have asked the Chief Medical Officer for England, Professor Chris Whitty, to work with his counterparts across the UK to consider the detail of the proposed new advisory mechanism and how it could meet the needs of all four UK countries. By extending and consolidating our arrangements for providing independent expert advice on all screening programmes, we will improve delivery and exploit the huge scientific progress that is being made to deliver faster and better access to the latest and best screening interventions. NHS England will become the single body responsible for the delivery of screening services.

I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the invaluable advice received from the current UK National Screening Committee on both existing and potential screening programmes to ensure the programmes achieve the right balance of benefit versus harm and that our national screening programmes are effective and of high quality.

In his report, Professor Richards also notes the need for significant investment in diagnostic capacity. I have recently announced £200m investment in new cancer screening equipment, including x-ray mammography machines and MRI and CT scanners, with priority given to replacing the oldest machines with new cutting-edge technology. This will significantly improve the ability of the NHS to diagnose cancer and will support the commitment in the NHS Long-term Plan to ensure 55,000 more people survive cancer each year.

I recognise the immense value that research adds to our understanding of screening and I am determined to ensure we use cutting-edge data techniques. NHSX will lead the vital work to drive this forward to save more lives.

Professor Richards has delivered a significant body of work, together with a substantial number of recommendations. His full recommendations will need further consideration, taking into account the potential impact on current service delivery to ensure any changes can be delivered safely and consistently. We will consider the review’s report and recommendations and develop an implementation plan, which we will publish in due course.

I would like to record my thanks to Professor Richards for his report, and to colleagues across the health system who have contributed, and to pay tribute to all those who work to deliver the screening system across the country.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS11
WS
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Robert Jenrick (Secretary of State for Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government)
Commons

Domestic Abuse Support

My Department has published the government response to the consultation on the Future Delivery of Support for Victims and their Children in Accommodation-Based Domestic Abuse Services.

Through the consultation we heard from victims and survivors, service providers, local authorities and other public agencies, as well as other professionals who support victims including children every day. All responses to the consultation were carefully considered – I am grateful to everyone who took the time to respond, providing vital insight and evidence.

The majority of respondents agreed with the proposals as set out. Government will therefore introduce a statutory duty on local authorities, placing clearer accountability on local areas to ensure the needs of survivors and victims within safe accommodation are met in a consistent way across England. By introducing this statutory duty, we want to ensure all victims of domestic abuse are able to access support within safe accommodation that meets their specific individual needs. All victims, no matter their background, should feel safe and supported as they recover from this terrible crime.

Under this new duty Tier One authorities (County Councils, Metropolitan, and Unitary Authorities, and the Greater London Authority) in England will be required to convene a Local Domestic Abuse Partnership Board to support them in undertaking local needs assessments and developing local strategies. Tier One authorities will also be required to effectively commission services based on a robust needs assessment, and report back to Government demonstrating how they have met the needs identified. The duty will also require Tier Two authorities in two-tier areas (District, City, and Borough Councils) to co-operate with the lead Tier One authority.

To support local authorities, my department will develop statutory guidance which will set out government’s expectations of local authorities in delivering this duty. We will also establish a ministerial-led National Steering Group to monitor and evaluate delivery of support within safe accommodation – working closely with the newly appointed Domestic Abuse Commissioner.

The full response can be found at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/support-for-victims-of-domestic-abuse-in-safe-accommodation

The Domestic Abuse Bill demonstrates the Government’s commitment to supporting all victims of domestic abuse. The Government will now introduce this new statutory duty as an amendment to the Domestic Abuse Bill at the earliest opportunity, to enable proper parliamentary scrutiny.

My officials will continue to work closely with local authorities, national organisations, and specialist domestic abuse service providers to ensure the proposals are effectively delivered on the ground.

I am also pleased to announce ahead of this new duty coming into force in 2021, that we are confirming today a further domestic abuse accommodation services funding round for 2020/21. Councils will be invited to bid for a share of £15 million – a 20% increase on 2019/20 – to ensure essential support services are able to run for those that need them.

A copy of the Government response to the consultation will be placed in the Library of the House.

This statement has also been made in the House of Lords: HLWS13
WS
Northern Ireland Office
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Lord Duncan of Springbank (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Northern Ireland)
Lords

Government's Legislative Programme (Northern Ireland)

My Rt Hon Friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (Julian Smith MP) has today made the following statement:

The legislative programme for the Second Session was outlined by Her Majesty on Monday 14 October. This statement provides a summary of the programme and its application to Northern Ireland. It does not include draft bills, Law Commission bills or Finance Bills.

The legislative programme will deliver important reform to domestic issues and deliver benefits across the whole of the United Kingdom. The programme includes a series of ambitious reforms and brings forward measures to support citizens across all the nations of the United Kingdom. The Government believes strongly in upholding the constitutional integrity of the United Kingdom - our Union is at its strongest when all four nations work together.

The Government has taken the necessary steps to ensure the UK leaves the EU with certainty, continuity and control by working to deliver an unprecedented programme of legislation to date, preparing for all scenarios. The second session legislative programme will build on this by seizing the opportunities EU exit brings.

The Government’s top priority in Northern Ireland is the restoration of the devolved institutions at the earliest possible opportunity. The Government will continue to work with all of the parties in Northern Ireland, and the Irish Government, as part of the ongoing talks process to support the return of the Executive.

In the absence of an Executive the Government remains steadfastly committed to ensuring good governance in Northern Ireland. We will continue to take action to protect the continued delivery of vital public services where necessary.

The following Bills contained in the programme are likely to apply to Northern Ireland (either in full or in part):

  • Agriculture Bill
  • Air Traffic Management and Unmanned Aircraft Bill
  • Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bill
  • Domestic Abuse Bill
  • Environment Bill
  • European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill
  • Extradition (Provisional Arrests) Bill
  • Financial Services Bill
  • Fisheries Bill
  • Foreign National Offenders Bill
  • Health Service Safety Investigations Bill
  • Historical Institutional Abuse (Northern Ireland) Bill
  • Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill
  • Medicines and Medical Devices Bill
  • Pension Schemes Bill
  • Private International Law (Implementation of Agreements) Bill
  • Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill
  • Trade Bill
  • Windrush Compensation Scheme (Expenditure) Bill

In the absence of a devolved Assembly and Executive we will continue to work constructively with Northern Ireland Departments to deliver legislation which will apply to Northern Ireland.

WS
Northern Ireland Office
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Julian Smith (Secretary of State for Northern Ireland)
Commons

Government's Legislative Programme (Northern Ireland)

Government's Legislative Programme (Northern Ireland)

The legislative programme for the Second Session was outlined by Her Majesty on Monday 14 October. This statement provides a summary of the programme and its application to Northern Ireland. It does not include draft bills, Law Commission bills or Finance Bills.

The legislative programme will deliver important reform to domestic issues and deliver benefits across the whole of the United Kingdom. The programme includes a series of ambitious reforms and brings forward measures to support citizens across all the nations of the United Kingdom. The Government believes strongly in upholding the constitutional integrity of the United Kingdom - our Union is at its strongest when all four nations work together.

The Government has taken the necessary steps to ensure the UK leaves the EU with certainty, continuity and control by working to deliver an unprecedented programme of legislation to date, preparing for all scenarios. The second session legislative programme will build on this by seizing the opportunities EU exit brings.

The Government’s top priority in Northern Ireland is the restoration of the devolved institutions at the earliest possible opportunity. The Government will continue to work with all of the parties in Northern Ireland, and the Irish Government, as part of the ongoing talks process to support the return of the Executive.

In the absence of an Executive the Government remains steadfastly committed to ensuring good governance in Northern Ireland. We will continue to take action to protect the continued delivery of vital public services where necessary.

The following Bills contained in the programme are likely to apply to Northern Ireland (either in full or in part):

  • Agriculture Bill
  • Air Traffic Management and Unmanned Aircraft Bill
  • Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bill
  • Domestic Abuse Bill
  • Environment Bill
  • European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill
  • Extradition (Provisional Arrests) Bill
  • Financial Services Bill
  • Fisheries Bill
  • Foreign National Offenders Bill
  • Health Service Safety Investigations Bill
  • Historical Institutional Abuse (Northern Ireland) Bill
  • Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill
  • Medicines and Medical Devices Bill
  • Pension Schemes Bill
  • Private International Law (Implementation of Agreements) Bill
  • Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill
  • Trade Bill
  • Windrush Compensation Scheme (Expenditure) Bill

In the absence of a devolved Assembly and Executive we will continue to work constructively with Northern Ireland Departments to deliver legislation which will apply to Northern Ireland.

WS
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Lord Gardiner of Kimble (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State )
Lords

The Environment Bill

My Rt. Hon Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Theresa Villiers) has today made the following statement:

Today, I am introducing the Environment Bill into the House of Commons, which will play a crucial role in delivering on the Government’s goal that this will be the first generation to leave our environment in a better state than we found it.

The case for tackling biodiversity loss and climate change is clear. The accelerating impact of climate change in this country, and around the world, is of profound public concern, as is the damage to nature with species loss, habitat erosion and the disappearance of cherished wildlife.

The Environment Bill, building on the vision set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan, will help to manage the impact of human activity on the environment, create a more sustainable economy, and enhance well-being and quality of life.

A key aim of the Bill is to engage and empower citizens, local government and businesses to deliver environmental outcomes and create a positive legacy for future generations. It will also support recent legislation on reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 by reducing waste, improving air and water quality, and restoring habitats to allow plants and wildlife to thrive.

The Bill will transform our environmental governance by creating a new, world-leading system tailored to a UK context once we leave the EU. It will introduce new statutory cycle of monitoring, planning and reporting on the environment, coupled with a framework to set long-term legally binding targets, on biodiversity, air quality, waste and resource efficiency, and water. This will deliver significant environmental improvement and ensure that the Government can be held to account for its actions.

This new framework will ensure that environmental principles are embedded in Government decision-making and policy development.

A new public body – the Office for Environmental Protection (OEP) – will act as an independent watchdog. The OEP will provide scrutiny and advice, and enforce the delivery of environmental law (including on climate) by public authorities where necessary.

Together, these measures form a robust framework which will maintain and enhance our environmental standards as we leave the EU. They will enable the UK to take a global lead on environmental concerns such as nature recovery and the protection of biodiversity.

The Environment Bill takes action to address some of the biggest environmental priorities of our age: air quality, nature recovery, waste and resource efficiency, and water resource management. For example, mandatory biodiversity net gain principles will ensure that new developments enhance biodiversity in conjunction with Local Nature Recovery Strategies which will help restore wildlife rich habitats to enable ecosystems to recover and thrive.

The Bill strengthens the ability for local authorities to tackle air quality issues. It will also require Government to set a legally-binding target for the pollutant with the most significant impact on human health, fine particulate matter. The Bill improves water company planning for future water supply and wastewater and drainage networks, enabling more resilient solutions to drought and flooding in a changing climate.

Extended Producer Responsibility and powers to set resource efficiency standards will drive a shift in the market towards products that can be more easily recycled, re-used and repaired. This, and other measures in the Bill, will play a significant part in addressing public concern about plastics waste and pollution.

This Environment Bill is a landmark commitment to protecting and improving the environment for future generations. It grasps opportunities created from leaving the European Union and I hope that it will deliver a step-change in environmental protection and recovery.

WS
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Theresa Villiers (Secretary of State)
Commons

The Environment Bill

Today, I am introducing the Environment Bill into the House of Commons, which will play a crucial role in delivering on the Government’s goal that this will be the first generation to leave our environment in a better state than we found it.

The case for tackling biodiversity loss and climate change is clear. The accelerating impact of climate change in this country, and around the world, is of profound public concern, as is the damage to nature with species loss, habitat erosion and the disappearance of cherished wildlife.

The Environment Bill, building on the vision set out in the 25 Year Environment Plan, will help to manage the impact of human activity on the environment, create a more sustainable economy, and enhance well-being and quality of life.

A key aim of the Bill is to engage and empower citizens, local government and businesses to deliver environmental outcomes and create a positive legacy for future generations. It will also support recent legislation on reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 by reducing waste, improving air and water quality, and restoring habitats to allow plants and wildlife to thrive.

The Bill will transform our environmental governance by creating a new, world-leading system tailored to a UK context once we leave the EU. It will introduce new statutory cycle of monitoring, planning and reporting on the environment, coupled with a framework to set long-term legally binding targets, on biodiversity, air quality, waste and resource efficiency, and water. This will deliver significant environmental improvement and ensure that the Government can be held to account for its actions.

This new framework will ensure that environmental principles are embedded in Government decision-making and policy development.

A new public body – the Office for Environmental Protection (OEP) – will act as an independent watchdog. The OEP will provide scrutiny and advice, and enforce the delivery of environmental law (including on climate) by public authorities where necessary.

Together, these measures form a robust framework which will maintain and enhance our environmental standards as we leave the EU. They will enable the UK to take a global lead on environmental concerns such as nature recovery and the protection of biodiversity.

The Environment Bill takes action to address some of the biggest environmental priorities of our age: air quality, nature recovery, waste and resource efficiency, and water resource management. For example, mandatory biodiversity net gain principles will ensure that new developments enhance biodiversity in conjunction with Local Nature Recovery Strategies which will help restore wildlife rich habitats to enable ecosystems to recover and thrive.

The Bill strengthens the ability for local authorities to tackle air quality issues. It will also require Government to set a legally-binding target for the pollutant with the most significant impact on human health, fine particulate matter. The Bill improves water company planning for future water supply and wastewater and drainage networks, enabling more resilient solutions to drought and flooding in a changing climate.

Extended Producer Responsibility and powers to set resource efficiency standards will drive a shift in the market towards products that can be more easily recycled, re-used and repaired. This, and other measures in the Bill, will play a significant part in addressing public concern about plastics waste and pollution.

This Environment Bill is a landmark commitment to protecting and improving the environment for future generations. It grasps opportunities created from leaving the European Union and I hope that it will deliver a step-change in environmental protection and recovery.

WS
Scotland Office
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Viscount Younger of Leckie (Government Spokesperson for Scotland)
Lords

Government's Legislative Programme (Scotland)

My Rt Hon Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr Alister Jack MP) has today made the following statement:

The legislative programme for the Second Session was outlined by Her Majesty on Monday 14 October. This statement provides a summary of the programme and its application to Scotland. It does not include draft bills, Law Commission bills or Finance Bills.

The legislative programme will deliver important reform to domestic issues and deliver benefits across the whole of the United Kingdom. The programme includes a series of ambitious reforms and brings forward measures to support citizens across all the nations of the United Kingdom. The Government believes strongly in upholding the constitutional integrity of the United Kingdom - our Union is at its strongest when all four nations work together.

The Government’s domestic programme will, for example, include the Employment (Allocation of Tips) Bill which will ensure consumers can be confident in the knowledge that their tips are going to the staff as they intended across the UK. The Environment Bill will also put environmental ambition and accountability at the very heart of government.

The Government has taken the necessary steps to ensure the UK leaves the EU with certainty, continuity and control by working to deliver an unprecedented programme of legislation to date, preparing for all scenarios. The second session legislative programme will build on this by seizing the opportunities EU exit brings. This includes the Fisheries Bill which will provide the powers to build a sustainable and profitable fishing industry, which is in the best interests of the whole of the UK and future generations.

The Government expects that the return of powers from the EU will lead to a significant increase in the decision-making powers for the Devolved Administrations. It will mean that decisions and powers sit in the right place and closer to people than ever before.

The following bills would apply to Scotland (either in full or in part).

  • Agriculture Bill
  • Air Traffic Management and Unmanned Aircraft Bill
  • Birmingham Commonwealth Games Bill
  • Domestic Abuse Bill
  • Employment (Allocation of Tips) Bill
  • Environment Bill
  • European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill
  • Extradition (Provisional Arrest) Bill
  • Financial Services Bill
  • Fisheries Bill
  • Foreign National Offenders Bill
  • Health Service Safety Investigations Bill
  • High Speed Rail 2 (West Midlands - Crewe) Bill
  • Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill
  • Medicines and Medical Devices Bill
  • Pension Schemes Bill
  • Police Protections Bill
  • Private International Law (Implementation of Agreements) Bill
  • Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill
  • Trade Bill
  • Windrush Compensation Scheme (Expenditure) Bill

In line with the Sewel Convention, the Government will continue to work constructively with the Scottish Government to secure the legislative consent of the Scottish Parliament where appropriate.

WS
Department for Exiting the European Union
Made on: 15 October 2019
Made by: Lord Callanan (Minister of State for Exiting the European Union)
Lords

General Affairs Council, October 2019

My Right Honourable friend Steve Barclay, Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, has made the following statement:

I will attend the General Affairs Council in Luxembourg on 15 October 2019 to represent the UK. The UK Government has decided that from 1 September until exit day, UK Ministers and officials will only attend EU meetings where the UK has a significant national interest in the outcome of the discussions.

The provisional agenda includes:

Preparation of the European Council on 17-18 October 2019 and European Council follow-up

The Council will discuss preparations for the October European Council, for which the agenda includes: the Multiannual Financial Framework; the next Institutional Cycle; Climate Change, and other items such as specific foreign policy issues. The European Council (Art 50) will meet in EU27 format to discuss the state of play regarding Brexit. Ministers will also take stock of the implementation of previous European Council conclusions.

Enlargement and the Stabilisation and Association Process - Albania and the Republic of North Macedonia

Enlargement is the process whereby European countries are able to join the European Union. The October General Affairs Council will consider whether or not to open EU accession negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia. The Commission’s 2018 and 2019 enlargement Progress Reports recommended opening negotiations with both.

Any Other Business: Transparency seminar (Brussels, 24 September 2019)

The Finnish Presidency will update the Council on a Transparency Seminar that it hosted on 24 September. The UK did not attend the seminar due to the current policy on attending EU meetings. This is largely an information-only item. Finland is keen to enhance the openness and transparency of the legislation process. They are seeking to facilitate discussions between Member States and the institutions during their Presidency, with the aim of reaching agreement on a number of measures to make the Council’s work more transparent.

Expand all statements
Print selected
Showing 1-20 out of 32
Results per page
Results per page 20 | 50 | 100