The Bishop of Derby asked a question on safeguarding and support for border staff at ports and airports, during a debate on conditions at entry points to the UK on 28th March 2023:
The Lord Bishop of Derby: My Lords, whatever the causes may be for queues as they arise at ports and airports, the people working there can come under great pressure as those queues and stress levels rise. Can the Minister say what support is being given to those who work at our borders to safeguard their well-being in the midst of all this pressure?
Continue reading “Bishop of Derby asks about support for border staff”
The Bishop of Durham asked a question on appointing advocates for unaccompanied asylum seeking children on 23rd January 2023, following a debate on safeguarding these children in hotels and other government-provided accommodation:
The Lord Bishop of Durham: My Lords, I thank the Minister for the care with which he is responding today; it is appreciated. Can he say how well qualified the social workers and others are to support unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, because there are particular issues around them? Would it not be better if we had a system of placing an advocate for each child, who could help them through the system, as soon as they arrive?
Continue reading “Bishop of Durham asks about advocates for unaccompanied asylum seeking children”
The Bishop of Leeds asked a question about the difficulty of saying “No” to the police on 22nd October 2022, during a debate on an incident 2020 in which the Metropolitan Police had strip-searched a schoolgirl in Hackney:
The Lord Bishop of Leeds: My Lords, there is an underlying question here that came up in the Sarah Everard case: how do you say no to the police? What do the Government plan to do to encourage and support schools and public authorities in addressing that question?
Continue reading “Bishop of Leeds asks about the difficulties of challenging the police”
On 15th July 2020 the House of Lords approved a Motion to pass for Royal Assent the Church of England Channel Island Measure, which was introduced by the Bishop of Birmingham, Rt Revd David Urquhart. The full debate is below.
Channel Islands Measure
Motion to Direct
Moved by The Lord Bishop of Birmingham:
That this House do direct that, in accordance with the Church of England Assembly (Powers) Act 1919, the Channel Islands Measure be presented to Her Majesty for the Royal Assent.
The Lord Bishop of Birmingham: My Lords, I shall give some brief historical and current background to the Channel Islands Measure, then outline its content.
Until the 16th century, the Channel Islands were part of the Church of France and the diocese of Coutances. In 1496, Henry VII obtained a papal bull transferring the islands to the English diocese of Salisbury, but it seems this was not put into effect. The islands finally became part of the Church of England in 1569, when they were transferred to the diocese of Winchester by Order in Council of Elizabeth I. Since then, the Church of England has been the established Church of the islands. Continue reading “House of Lords approves Church of England Channel Islands Measure”
On 11th June 2020 Lord Clement-Jones asked Her Majesty’s Government “what assessment they have made of the research by the British Board of Film Classification on the extent of exposure of children and teens to harmful or upsetting content while in lockdown, published on 4 May.” The Bishop of Derby, Rt Revd Libby Lane, asked a follow-up question:
The Lord Bishop of Derby: My Lords, I echo the concern about the Government’s lack of progress in introducing the measures outlined in their online harms White Paper. The BBFC report found that children are increasingly using pornography as an educational tool, which appears to be normalising such access in childhood. That means that, particularly during the lockdown, there is an increased risk of children being exposed to harmful content. Continue reading “Bishop of Derby calls for age verification for pornography online”
On 30th January 2020 the House of Lords considered the Church of England (Miscellaneous Provisions) Measure, a piece of church legislation that was introduced by the Bishop of Gloucester, Rt Revd Rachel Treweek. A short debate also took place on a motion to regret the Measure, tabled by Lord Trefgarne, which was subsequently withdrawn. The Measure was passed.
Moved by The Lord Bishop of Gloucester
That this House do direct that, in accordance with the Church of England Assembly (Powers) Act 1919, the Church of England (Miscellaneous Provisions) Measure be presented to Her Majesty for the Royal Assent.
The Lord Bishop of Gloucester: My Lords, although the provisions contained in this Measure are miscellaneous, some of them are nevertheless important. Rather than go through the Measure section by section, it might be helpful if I just mention some of the more significant provisions at this point.
Section 2 implements a recommendation from Dame Moira Gibb’s report following her review of the Church of England’s response to the abuse committed by Peter Ball. One of the report’s recommendations was for the introduction of a national register of clergy with permission to officiate. That recommendation has been further developed and Section 2 will now require there to be a national ministry register. Every clerk in holy orders who has authority to exercise ministry in the Church of England will have to be included in the register. There is also provision for the creation of a register of licensed lay people, and bishops will be required to provide details to the Archbishops’ Council on a regular basis so that the national registers are kept up to date. A form of the register that omits personal contact information will be published by the council and be accessible to the public free of charge.
Continue reading “Lords approve Church of England (Miscellaneous Provisions) Measure”
On 11th December 2018 the House of Lords debated a Motion from Lord Lexden, “That this House regrets the failure by Her Majesty’s Government to institute an independent inquiry into Operation Conifer conducted by the Wiltshire police into allegations of child sex abuse against Sir Edward Heath; and calls on Her Majesty’s Government to make proposals for an independent review of the seven unsubstantiated allegations left unresolved at the end of Operation Conifer.” The Bishop of Salisbury, Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam, spoke in the debate:
The Lord Bishop of Salisbury: My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Lexden, for his doggedness in persisting with this, and the other Members of the House who have also done so.
I come at this from something of a different angle. We are dealing with an extremely difficult issue as a society. The Church of England knows something about it—but so do we all. This is really difficult stuff. It would not be enough to have an inquiry into the seven unresolved and said to be unsubstantiated allegations. It is about what we have learned from our experience, about good practice, about what has gone wrong and about how we develop things for the future. Continue reading “Bishop of Salisbury supports call for review into Operation Conifer”
On 6th December 2016, the Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Alan Smith, spoke to a question he had tabled to ask the Government “what assessment they have made of the rise in the number of children and young people being treated for self-harm.” Lord Prior of Brampton responded for the Government. The Bishops’ follow-up question and those of Peers are reproduced below.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the rise in the number of children and young people being treated for self-harm.
Lord Prior of Brampton My Lords, the Government are aware of the appalling rise in self-harm in children and young people and the misery this reflects. The Government are also acutely aware that self-harm is a leading indicator of risk of suicide and recognise that much more needs to be done to address this issue.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans
I thank the Minister for his reply. The research from the World Health Organization shows that around 20% of British 15 year-olds report some sort of self-harm. In the past five years, research shows that hospital admissions associated with self-harm have gone up by nearly 93% among girls and 45% among boys. Having recently visited the outstanding charity selfharmUK
, in Luton in my diocese, I have seen what a concerted and systematic approach to this problem can have on a very difficult issue, and we need something similar at a national level. Will Her Majesty’s Government commit to publishing guidelines for schools and colleges about preventing and responding to self-harm?
On 5th September 2016 the Second Church Estates Commissioner, Rt Hon Caroline Spelman MP, answered a written question from Graham Allen MP about the Church of England’s response to a report on abuse at Kendall House, Gravesend.
Mr Graham Allen (Nottingham North): To ask the right hon. Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Church of England plans to respond to the report by Professor Sue Proctor on abuse at Kendall House, Gravesend, published in July 2016. Continue reading “Church Commissioners Written Answer: Children in Care”
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