Welcome to the Church of England’s weekly round-up of activity in Parliament.
This week the House of Lords sat for two days before breaking for the Christmas recess. Bishops spoke to amendments to the Government’s Welfare Reform Bill and also during the Second Reading of the Government’s Immigration Bill. Bishops also asked questions about countering extremism and evaluation of the ‘under occupancy charge’. The House of Lords will return on the 11th January 2016.
Monday 21st December
The Bishop of Peterborough asked a supplementary question to Lord Pearson’s question about religious extremism. Bishop Donald highlighted the importance of social cohesion in countering terrorism.
The Bishop of Durham spoke to several amendments during debate on the Welfare Reform and Work Bill. The Bishop spoke about a review of the benefit cap in relation to children and the disabled, an amendment to block the proposed benefit freeze and an amendment to protect ESA Support Group claimants from the impact of the freeze to the basic ESA rate.
The Bishop of Southwark spoke to an amendment relating to kinship care during debate on the Welfare Reform and Work Bill. The Bishop supported the amendment of the Earl of Listowel, which sought to exempt kinship carers from the impact of the reduced benefit cap.
Tuesday 22nd December
The Bishop of St Albans asked a supplementary question to Baroness Lister’s question about the results of the evaluation of removal of the ‘Under occupancy charge’: Final Report
The Bishop of Southwark spoke at the second reading of the Governments Immigration Bill.
The Bishop spoke about asylum seekers and his recent visit to Calais.