Week in Westminster 14th-18th September 2020

Parliament met this week in Westminster and online. Prayers were read at the start of each sitting day in the House of Lords by the Bishops of Southwark, Carlisle, St Albans and Peterborough.

The Bishops of Durham and Southwark supported amendments to the Government’s Immigration Bill, on detention, refugee family reunion, unaccompanied children, and health charges for NHS and social care workers.

The Bishop of St Albans asked questions of Government about the impact of new coronavirus restrictions on Remembrance Sunday events, and about accessible housing for the elderly and those with disabilities.

He also proposed amendments to the Government’s Agriculture Bill, on food security and farm payments. Bishops took part in votes on the Bill.

The Bishop of Southwark asked Government about Chinese policy towards Taiwan.

The Bishop of Carlisle asked a question about tackling health inequalities, and also called on Government to reassure EU and UK citizens about their commitment to the UK’s international treaty obligations.

In the House of Commons MPs the Second Church Estates Commissioner answered written questions from MPs on a wide range of issues: on the church response to COVID-19, Christian persecution, support for cathedrals, wedding guidance, the Sunday congestion charge, ethical investment, St Margaret’s Westminster, South Sudan, church schools, church buildings, lead theft, the Beirut explosion, mental health, and ordinations.