Results 81–100 of 3042 for speaker:Baroness Buscombe

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, nothing has changed since I answered exactly the same Question on this issue last week, when it was asked by the noble Baroness, Lady Janke. We have responded fully to the special rapporteur’s recommendations and will continue to reform the welfare system so that it encourages work while supporting those who need help—an approach based on clear evidence that work offers families...

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, it is right that any Government are held to account for the effectiveness of their approach to tackling poverty, which was always one of our key priorities. While we take every report of this nature incredibly seriously, and recognise that there is more to do—as we always do—we remain disappointed by the overtly political tone of the report and strongly refute the suggestion...

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My noble friend makes a very good point. We are in very good shape in this country and we deliver the fourth most generous level of welfare support in the OECD. We spend more on family benefits than any other country in the G7, and as a share of our GDP, our public spending on family benefits is the second highest in the OECD. We continue to listen and learn, but we are also very proud of...

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: I have to tell the noble Baroness that that is not exactly my area, but I will take away what she asked. It is important to say that we are doing all we can to ensure that we are delivering more from our services and continue to increase spending—certainly from the Department for Work and Pensions—to support those in need.

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: I am pleased to report that we are looking at that very point at the moment and are about to carry out a pilot for a much easier work capability assessment, which will mean that people do not have to have repeats or assessments for different things. That is something we are taking on board very seriously.

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, I am not dismissive of the report overall but I am dismissive of the UN rapporteur’s approach, which was very unhelpful. We are doing an awful lot to support children in schools, with breakfast clubs and so on. We are also spending a lot more on family benefits to make sure that children are properly fed. However, we can always do more and we take poverty seriously.

Poverty and Human Rights: UN Report - Question (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, I am extremely grateful to my noble friend for what he says. I have just been at the United Nations in New York, representing Her Majesty’s Government at a disability conference. Time and again, Ministers and commissioners—everyone involved with the UN—said that they do not recognise this report. Much that the United Nations does is brilliant but I am grateful to my noble...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Universal Credit (25 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: We plan to commence the Move to UC pilot when the necessary preparations are in place, subject to management checks of readiness. Preparations are proceeding to plan. Stakeholder engagement has been and continues to be a vital part of the work we are doing on Universal Credit. Since last October we have been working closely with a diverse range of stakeholders to listen to their views and to...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Arcadia Group: Pensions (24 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: The pensions framework established by Parliament in the Pensions Act 2004 sets out that ongoing employers may address the funding of their scheme deficits over a reasonable period of time. This responsibility falls on the company rather than its owners, other than where The Pensions Regulator has used its anti-avoidance powers. This approach of spreading funding of deficits was established to...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Arcadia Group: Pensions (24 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: The best support for a defined benefit pension scheme is an ongoing trading employer. Working with the shareholders, pension trustees and Pension Protection Fund, The Pensions Regulator were pleased to be able to agree a £310m package of support last week that would provide greater certainty for the Arcadia pension schemes. This comprises security to the value of £210m, together with the...

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: State Retirement Pensions: Greater Manchester (24 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: In November 2018, the number of pensioners aged 75 and over claiming the State Pension and Pension Credit in the Greater Manchester districts can be found in the table below. Pension Credit and State Pension Recipients by district State Pension Pension Credit Bolton 21,321 4,859 Bury 15,189 2,790 Manchester 21,524 8,290 Oldham 16,374 3,746 Rochdale 15,231 3,798...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, we have responded fully to the special rapporteur’s recommendations. A sustainable solution to poverty needs a strong economy and a benefits system that works with the tax system and the labour market to support employment and higher pay. Under this Government, employment is at its highest level since the 1970s. Wages are rising at their fastest in a decade. Income inequality has...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, nobody wants to see poverty rising and we treat the issues raised by the special rapporteur seriously. However, we seriously regret the inflammatory and overtly political tone of his report and strongly refute the suggestion that we have failed to listen to stakeholders. As set out in our published response, we have taken action in a number of areas, including the recently announced...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, I believe in equality. Some of the rapporteur’s recommendations show a rather myopic understanding of universal credit. When I broached the subject of this report while representing Her Majesty’s Government at the UN last week, it was clear that everyone who knew about it was keen to distance themselves from it, preferring to compliment this Government on, “Groundbreaking,...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, we have done an enormous amount to tackle poverty since we came into government. We have invested huge sums of additional money into developing a welfare system that encourages people into work and supports them in work and with progression in their jobs, so that they can better provide, because we know that the best way to get out of poverty and save children from it is to work. As...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, we are tackling poverty across the country. I refer noble Lords to the leader article in the Times of 25 May: “The failings of Mr Alston’s report are legion … it is padded out with such accusations as that the government evinces a ‘punitive, mean-spirited and often callous approach’”. This is the Times. It said, “This is nonsense”. It goes on: “yet poverty in this...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, we continue to listen and to learn. The Government continue to spend more than £95 billion a year on benefits for people of working age. I say again, as I have said so many times before, that when the party opposite were in government, 20% of all working-age households in the United Kingdom—including Wales—were entirely workless. We have brought that figure down to 13.9% and we...

Extreme Poverty and Human Rights: United Nations Report - Question (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: I have answered it. We have listened; we have taken the questions and statements of the rapporteur very seriously. We do not accept, in the words of people at the United Nations last week, the political scaremongering, the hyperbole, the inflammatory and scaremongering approach to the whole subject. It is not helpful from someone who was not keen to engage with our officials.

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Occupational Money Purchase Schemes (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: I refer the Noble Lord to my previous responses. The Government will bring forward legislation as soon as parliamentary time allows.

Written Answers — Department for Work and Pensions: Poverty (19 Jun 2019)

Baroness Buscombe: Ministers and officials have regular meetings with key stakeholders to discuss a diverse range of issues that fall within the Department’s remit and impact on the lives of claimants. Many of these contacts occur at a local level between Jobcentres and external stakeholders which serve or represent their local communities, and such contacts are not recorded centrally, and to provide this...


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