On Wednesday 30th September 2020 the House of Lords considered amendments to the Government’s Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill during its Report Stage. The Bishop of Durham, Rt Revd Paul Butler, spoke in support of two amendments, on:
- Researching and reporting on the impact on the social care workforce.
- Ensuring that children of EEA and Swiss nationals, in care and entitled to care leaving support, do not become undocumented by receiving automatic Indefinite Leave to Remain under the EU Settlement Scheme.
Votes on the amendments were deferred until the following week due to technical problems.
On 1st July Lord Bradley asked Her Majesty’s Government “what action they are taking to address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health”. The Rt Revd Sarah Mullally, Bishop of London, asked a follow up question focusing on mental health care for care workers.
The Lord Bishop of London: My Lords, the Government are providing NHS staff with free access to online therapy and group counselling sessions, among other things, which is much needed and very welcome. Can the Minister say whether the same quality of care, recognition and access to mental health support is being given to parts of the social care sector such as nursing homes, care homes and home care workers, who have faced similar traumatic experiences to those of NHS staff?Continue reading “Bishop of London asks Government about mental health provision for care workers”
On 20th May 2020 a Government statement was given in the virtual House of Lords regarding care homes during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Bishop of Portsmouth, Rt Revd Christopher Foster, asked a follow up question:
The Lord Bishop of Portsmouth: My Lords, we know how crucial the social care sector is, and the huge challenges it faced even before Covid-19, with 120,000 care assistant vacancies. Can the Minister therefore respond to the excellent suggestion from the most reverend Primate the Archbishop of Canterbury that we establish a royal commission on social care, not to blame but to learn, so that we have the right information to make the right decisions and provide the right services for these most vulnerable people?Continue reading “Bishop of Portsmouth asks Government about establishing a royal commission on social care”
On 28th January 2020 the Bishop of Gloucester, Rt Revd Rachel Treweek, asked a question she had tabled to Government, on support for looked after and adopted children. She and the Archbishop of York, Most Revd and Rt Hon John Sentamu, asked follow-up questions and the transcript is below:
Looked-after and Adopted Children
The Lord Bishop of Gloucester: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to review support for children looked after by local authorities and those children who are adopted.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Education (Lord Agnew of Oulton) (Con): My Lords, we are committed to undertake a review of the care system. We are already implementing substantial reforms to improve outcomes for this most vulnerable group of children and young people. Alongside the reforms, we are providing councils with an additional £1 billion for adult and children’s social care in every year of this Parliament. The review will allow us to go further in ensuring that children and young people have the support that they need. Continue reading “Bishop of Gloucester and Archbishop of York ask Government about support for looked after and adopted children”
On 13th June 2019 Baroness Brinton asked the Government “what steps they are taking to ensure that unpaid carers receive the support to which they are entitled.” The Bishop of St Albans, Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow-up question:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, I am sure that we all want to encourage stronger family and community life, which is the very bedrock of healthy societies, but there is one group in particular that needs help and that is the 166,000 underage carers in England. Research by the Children’s Society suggests that that is just the tip of the iceberg—indeed, a huge underestimate. Many of these young people do not realise that they classify as carers: it is just what they have had to deal with. In many cases it is affecting their schooling and mental health. What are Her Majesty’s Government able to do to help and support underage carers in particular?
On 29th June 2017 the Bishop of Gloucester, Rt Revd Rachel Treweek, spoke during the final day’s debate on the Queen’s Speech. She highlighted the situation of vulnerable young people moving into adulthood, as care leavers, carers, refugees, those with disabilities and those in prison.
The Lord Bishop of Gloucester: My Lords, I will highlight something that I believe needs careful consideration as we think about education, health and welfare. It is the matter of vulnerable young people making the transition to adulthood. I am grateful for the aspirations I have heard to support families and give children the best start in life. As we strive for the fairness and flourishing of all, I am concerned that we have yet to see any emphasis on our most vulnerable young people as they move into adulthood. I would particularly like to draw the Government’s attention to five specific groups who need help as they transition to adult life: young people leaving care; young people who are carers themselves; young people with severe disability; young people who are refugees and asylum seekers; and young women at risk of offending and being imprisoned. Continue reading “Bishop of Gloucester highlights needs of vulnerable young people moving into adulthood”
On the 6th February 2017, Baroness McIntosh of Pickering asked the Government “what estimate they have made of the number of residential care home beds that were available in (1) 2005, and (2) 2015.” The Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Alan Smith, asked a follow-up question. Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks Government about nursing and caring staffing”
On 24th November 2016 the House of Lords debated a motion from Baroness Finlay of Llandaff “To move that this House takes note of the implications for the health and social care workforce of the result of the referendum on the United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union.” The Bishop of Ely, Rt Revd Stephen Conway, spoke in the debate:
The Lord Bishop of Ely: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Baroness, Lady Finlay, for bringing this important matter before the House today. The right reverend Prelate the Bishop of Carlisle, our lead bishop on health and social care, cannot be in his place today, but I am glad to contribute from these Benches on his behalf.
The debate brings to mind two principles central to Christian faith and practice: justice for the stranger in our midst and care for the vulnerable. Mosaic law enjoins us not to withhold justice from the outsider. Only yesterday, in conversation, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government sought to check that I had heard the words of Jesus, “Love thy neighbour as thyself”. I am grateful to him. This reminds us that the words of Jesus tell us that every care and service given to others is a service given to God. Continue reading “Bishop of Ely calls on Government to “make care work a recognised and valued profession.””
On 6th July 2016 the House of Lords continued to consider the Government’s Children and Social Work Bill in Committee. The Bishop of Durham, Rt Revd Paul Butler, spoke during debate on an amendment from Labour’s Lord Warner on personal advisers. The amendment was withdrawn following debate. The Bishop said:
The Lord Bishop of Durham: My Lords, I rise to express not dissimilar concerns to the noble Baroness, Lady Howarth. I firmly support the tenor of what is proposed, but at the same time I go back to Second Reading when the noble Baroness, Lady Hughes, raised the question of foster carers. Some foster carers will rail against the professionalisation of advice. If we believe that there needs to be flexibility in the range of personal advisers, we need to beware of the Bill being so constraining that we lose that flexibility. Continue reading “Children and Social Work Bill 2016: Bishop of Durham queries arrangements for personal advisers”