It is in the interests of the UK for there to be great international free trade and a trans-Atlantic free trade agreement is a significant step towards that. Government figures show that the UK could benefit by up to £10 billion per year if this is agreed. This is the equivalent of £400 per UK household per year.Read more
I understand the strength of your feeling on this issue and would like to clarify the situation. Self-locking snares have been banned since 1981, but the use of free-running snares is permitted. Animals are, however, protected from unnecessary suffering under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, and this includes any caught in snares.Read more
The Prime Minister has recently announced a new approach to mental health based on recommendations from the Taskforce. Thousands of people with mental health conditions will be supported to find or return to work, meaning they have the opportunity to get on in life. For too long there has not been enough focus on mental health care in this country, and the Government now plans to deliver true equality between mental and physical health.Read more
We need a welfare system that supports the most vulnerable, but also helps those who can work into suitable employment. That is why the Government wants to increase employment among people who have health challenges but are capable of taking steps back into work. Thanks to efforts over the last five years, the number of people with disabilities who are unemployed has already fallen, with 339,000 disabled people moving into work in the last two years.Read more
I appreciate this is an important issue to the many women who use sanitary products. However, I regret to inform you that it is not within the UK Government’s power to reduce the already discounted 5 per cent rate of VAT charged on women’s sanitary products.Read more
I fully understand and appreciate people’s concerns about fracking, but let me reassure you that the Government is creating a regulatory regime that provides clear, strong protections for the environment. With these in place, I think it is right that we explore and make use of shale gas and oil. The opportunity to extract this energy, as well as to secure jobs and investment, cannot be ignored.Read more
Today a debate will take place about Tax Credit reform, these reforms were voted through on 14th September 2015.Read more
I know that junior doctors already work seven days a week and play a vital role in our NHS. I am aware that the Government has the utmost respect for the outstanding contribution made by this pivotal part of the NHS workforce.Read more
I appreciate your concerns on this issue. Both I and the Government are committed to the highest standards of animal welfare.
Under existing laws and regulations all animals, including farmed poultry, must be looked after in ways that meet their welfare needs. Guidance is maintained on the steps stock-keepers need to take to avoid risking prosecution.
I appreciate that vehicles parked on pavements can cause particular problems for people in wheelchairs or with visual impairments and those with pushchairs.Read more