Vaccines for developing world, poverty in the pandemic, devolution and Ethiopia  

In the House of Lords on 14th January 2021 the Bishop of St Albans received written answers to questions on vaccines for developing countries and the situation in the Tigray region of Ethiopia while the Bishop of Durham received answers to questions on the recent updated report by the Child Poverty Action Group and the Church of England on Poverty in the pandemic.
Meanwhile in the Chamber, the Bishop of Birmingham raised the issue of devolution in England with the Government during Lord Young’s Oral question about the formation of a Constitution, Democracy and Human Rights Commission. Text below:

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‘Spycops’ and gambling related harm

In the House of Lords on 13th January 2021 the Bishop of Durham spoke during the debate on the Covert Human Intelligence Bill and the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to a question on support for those living with gambling-related harm. Details below:

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Bishop of St Albans asks about gambling, credit cards, young people

On 30th December the Bishop of St Albans received written answers to questions on gambling; use of credit cards, young people, and conflicts of interest of firms bidding for contracts to treat people with mental health issues:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Government Response to the House of Lords Gambling Industry Committee Report: Social and Economic Impact of the Gambling Industry, published on 8 December, what plans they have to mandate a ban on all gambling transactions via credit cards. [HL11492] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about gambling, credit cards, young people”

Bishop of St Albans asks about HSBC, China and Hong Kong democracy campaigners

On 30th December the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to questions on HSBC, China and democracy campaigners in Hong Kong:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the relationship between HSBC Bank and the Chinese Communist Party. [HL11375]

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what representations they have made to HSBC Bank following that bank’s suspension of the bank accounts of pro-democracy campaigners from Hong Kong. [HL11376] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about HSBC, China and Hong Kong democracy campaigners”

Bishop of St Albans asks about monetary policy, car finance schemes

On 30th December the Bishop of St Albans received written answers to questions on monetary policy, and care finance schemes:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Agnew of Oulton on 3 December (HL10488) and the exchange of letters between the Bank of England and HM Treasury on the Asset Purchase Facility on 29 January 2009, whether the Monetary Policy Committee still requires the consent of HM Treasury to engage in quantitative easing through the Asset Purchase Facility. [HL11242]

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Agnew of Oulton on 3 December (HL10488) and the exchange of letters between the Bank of England and HM Treasury on the Asset Purchase Facility on 29 January 2009, what assessment they have made of the implications of the confirmation in these letters that the financing of the Asset Purchase Facility by central bank money would require HM Treasury consent for the question of whether it is appropriate for the Government to comment on the effectiveness of quantitative easing; and what assessment they have made of the effects of quantitative easing on the increase in house prices compared to increases in wages. [HL11243] Continue reading “Bishop of St Albans asks about monetary policy, car finance schemes”

Bishop of St Albans asks Government to review UK supply chains over Uighur concerns

In the House of Lords on 17th December 2020 during exchanges on forced Uighur labour within Xinjiang, China, the Bishop of St Albans asked Government to investigate supply chains in UK local and national public contracts:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans [V]: My Lords, the news that forced labour was active in cotton supply chains is not the first example of business connections to Uighur repression.
Previous concerns have also been expressed in relation to Hikvision and its role in the Xinjiang surveillance apparatus. Will the Government commit to a comprehensive review of supply chains in local and national public contracts to ascertain whether public funds have helped to finance this ongoing tragedy?

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Bishop of St Albans asks about fly-tipping of electronic and hazardous waste

On 16th December the Bishop of St Albans received answers to two written questions on fly-tipping of electronic and hazardous waste:

The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park on 6 February (HL944), what progress they have made on the introduction of a mandatory electronic waste tracking system to combat fly tipping. [HL11049]

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Bishop of St Albans asks about funding for charitable hospices facing loss of income due to Covid-19

On 15th December 2020 the Bishop of St Albans received a written answer to two questions on hospice funding:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to provide funding to charitable hospice care providers who have lost community funding during the COVID-19 pandemic. [HL10989]
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to provide funding to Rennie Grove Hospice Care to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. [HL10991]

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Votes: UK Internal Market Bill

On 14th December votes were held in the House of Lords on the United Kingdom Internal Market Bill during its ‘ping-pong’ stage between Houses. Bishops supported two motions tabled by Peers to insist on amendments to the Bill that had been turned down by the Government in the House of Commons.

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Bishop of St Albans asks Government to weigh financial and health costs of gambling

On 14th December the Bishop of St Albans asked a question during exchanges on a statement about the Government’s Gambling Review:
The Lord Bishop of St Albans [V]: My Lords, it is true that we cannot cost the human hurt and pain, but the Statement praised the tax receipts and employment benefits that come from the gambling industry but did not mention any of the financial costs of gambling-related harms. Will the Minister assure the House that, as part of the evidence-based approach, the review will include research into the cost of gambling-related harms—for example, for the 14 clinics dealing with gambling addictions, the cost of trials and imprisonment, the cost of JSA claims and the terrible cost of suicides—to ascertain whether the gambling industry is really a net contributor to the Treasury, as the Government claim?

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