Written question – Universal Credit [25/03/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether she has made an assessment of the potential merits of removing the five-week wait for claimants to receive their first universal credit payment during the covid-19 outbreak. (30849)

Tabled on: 17 March 2020

Answer:
Will Quince:

As both the Prime Minister and Chancellor have made clear, the Government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID 19 and we have been clear in our intention that no one should be penalised for doing the right thing. These are rapidly developing circumstances, we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

The answer was submitted on 25 Mar 2020 at 13:00.

 

Written question – Basic income [23/03/202]

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of introducing a basic income to provide financial assistance to people affected by covid-19. (30848)

Tabled on: 17 March 2020

Answer:
Mims Davies:

As both the Prime Minister and Chancellor have made clear, the Government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID 19 and we have been clear in our intention that no one should be penalised for doing the right thing. These are rapidly developing circumstances, we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

The answer was submitted on 23 Mar 2020 at 17:15.

 

Written question – FCO, travel advice [19/03/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what (a) travel advice and (b) recourse to funds his Department is providing to people who’ve booked travel and accommodation abroad to attend sporting events which become cancelled or played behind closed doors. (28665)

Tabled on: 12 March 2020

Answer:
Nigel Adams:

The global response to coronavirus is developing rapidly, with many countries imposing travel restrictions and closing borders and we have now taken the step to advise against all but essential travel globally. We urge all British nationals in country to speak to their travel provider if they wish to return to UK and follow the guidance of local authorities while they remain overseas. Travellers should speak to their tour operator, airline, transport/accommodation provider and insurance company (as applicable) to discuss the options available to them.

The answer was submitted on 19 Mar 2020 at 15:49.

 

Written question – PIP [12/03/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps she is taking to ensure the effectiveness of the initial personal independence payment assessment in order to mitigate the recourse to appeal. (26929)

Tabled on: 09 March 2020

Answer:
Justin Tomlinson:

We monitor all elements of PIP Providers’ performance, including quality of assessments. There is an independent audit function that continually monitors the quality of assessment reports and provides feedback to Providers. Providers are held accountable against a number of performance measures. If the Providers do not meet the agreed standards, financial remedies can apply.

Turning to the decision making process itself, last year we implemented a new approach to handling applications for Mandatory Reconsideration (MR) in PIP which includes contacting claimants, where appropriate, to see if there is information that would enable us to change the decision. To support this, we are investing additional time for communication, evidence gather and review. This approach supports our aim – to make the right decision as early as possible – so claimants don’t need to progress to the appeal stage. Early results have been positive and the same approach has now been adopted in ESA and UC. We continue to engage with stakeholders to explore how we can further improve the effectiveness of the MR process.

The answer was submitted on 12 Mar 2020 at 11:09.

 

Written question – Home Office [04/03/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, who the attendees of the summit on tackling drug misuse held in Glasgow on 27 February 2020 were. (22419)

Tabled on: 28 February 2020

Answer:
Kit Malthouse:

The UK Drugs Summit brought together healthcare professionals, drug recovery experts, senior police officers, voluntary sector organisations, Ministers and officials from the UK Government and devolved administrations, those with lived experience of drug dependence and experts from the US and Portugal.

The answer was submitted on 04 Mar 2020 at 16:50.

 

Written question – Home Office [12/02/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when her Department will announce more details on the drugs summit taking place in Glasgow on 27 February 2020. (12956)

Tabled on: 05 February 2020

This question was grouped with the following question(s) for answer:

  1. To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what relevant organisations and stakeholders have been invited to attend the drugs summit in Glasgow on 27 February 2020. (12957)
    Tabled on: 05 February 2020

Answer:
Kit Malthouse:

The Summit will be an opportunity for dialogue between partners from all parts of the UK on the challenges of, and potential solutions to tackling the harms of, drug misuse. There will be representation at the Summit from all parts of the UK, including contributions from Glasgow, from public health leads of all four nations, and from UK Government Ministers as well as Ministers from each of the devolved administrations.

The Summit will bring together different perspectives across healthcare, law enforcement, prevention and recovery. As part of this there will be discussion of the forthcoming findings of the independent Review of Drugs, hearing from Professor Dame Carol Black about the demand and supply landscape and the nature of drug misuse. Dame Carol’s work will make an important contribution to the evidence base that we can use to take action to tackle drug misuse and the harms it causes.

Announcements on the Summit were made on 23 October 2019 and 24 January this year. Further information will be issued in due course. The full list of invitees is being finalised, taking account of suggestions from the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as well as from a range of UK Government departments and others. Invitations that have so far been issued include those to the chief medical officers for each part of the UK and chief scientists in relevant departments and in the devolved administrations. Further invitations will be issued over the coming days.

The answer was submitted on 12 Feb 2020 at 15:53.

Written question – Transport [07/02/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he plans to include e-scooters in the cycle to work scheme. (10396)

Tabled on: 30 January 2020

Answer:
George Freeman:

The Department has no plans to include e-scooters in the Cycle to Work Scheme. The Cycle to Work Scheme is an employee tax-benefit scheme that enables employees to hire cycles and cycle safety equipment for active travel to work from their employer, or from a third party, in return for a deduction from their earnings via salary sacrifice. The Future of Mobility Regulatory Review is considering appropriate legislation and support framework for emerging micro-mobility vehicles including electric scooters.

The answer was submitted on 07 Feb 2020 at 13:43.

 

Written question – medical cannabis [04/02/2020]

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to expedite the processes for granting import licences for cannabis-based products for medicinal use. (8362)

Tabled on: 27 January 2020

Answer:
Kit Malthouse:

All applications are considered individually on their merits and with regards to our obligation under International Conventions and Domestic law. Applications for importation of CBPMs are already expedited, where documentation and regulatory approval is provided, in recognition of the need to ensure continuity of the supply of unlicensed medicines. Applications for import licences are normally decided within a few working days.

The answer was submitted on 04 Feb 2020 at 15:54.