Questions for Short Debate

Questions for short debate (QSDs) are the principal means by which backbenchers secure 1-1½ hour debates in the Chamber or Grand Committee.

A member who wishes to ask a QSD must first table it with the clerks in the Table Office. The question is then printed in a running list in House of Lords Business, a House publication. The date of tabling is given in House of Lords Business (and below); if a date for debate has not been agreed within six months of tabling, it is removed from the list automatically by the clerks in the Table Office. The Companion text on QSDs is available here (6.45 et seq).

Members should then consult the Government Whips’ Office to agree upon a suitable date when the question can be asked. Otherwise the Government Whips’ Office offers time to members to ask QSDs in the order in which they appear in the waiting list in House of Lords Business. The slots available are the dinner breaks on most Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays and end of business on Thursdays (though other business, mainly motions in opposition to SIs, competes for this time) and on occasion in Grand Committee. In addition, the Grand Committee meets for a day of QSDs for every six sitting weeks: future dates are advertised in the Whips’ Office publication Forthcoming Business. The Chief Whip cannot guarantee to continue to offer time to a member who repeatedly turns down or does not acknowledge offers.

The Whips’ Office offers time to members using the parliamentary email system. If members would prefer to be contacted on a different email address or in a different way, they should let the Whips’ Office know as soon as they have tabled their QSD: email holgovernmentwhips@parliament.uk.

The list below sets out those members who do not have an agreed slot for their question for short debate, in the order in which they appear in House of Lords Business. It also indicates to which of those members the Whips’ Office have offered time. 

OFFERED TIME BY THE GOVERNMENT WHIPS' OFFICE (as of Tuesday 14 January):

Baroness Hollins to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to mandate training on learning disability and autism for all health and social care staff in England. (19 December)

Lord De Mauley to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the current health of the Reserve Forces. (19 December)

Lord Wigley to ask Her Majesty’s Government what their proposals are for replacing the European Structural Funds currently administered by the Welsh Government. (19 December)

Baroness Tyler of Enfield to ask Her Majesty’s Government how they plan to respond to the ten steps to improve social mobility contained in the Sutton Trust’s Mobility Manifesto, published in November 2019, and the recommendations of the Social Mobility Commission’s 2019 State of the Nation report. (19 December)

NOT YET OFFERED TIME:

Lord Clement-Jones to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they have taken to assess the full implications of decision-making and prediction by algorithm in the public sector. (19 December)

Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the case for HS2. (19 December)

Lord Lucas to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to ensure that at least half of the communal changing or toilet facilities offered in public buildings are reserved for women only. (19 December)

Baroness Jolly to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the impact of treatment by unregulated and unregistered persons offering psychotherapy or counselling services upon the mental health and wellbeing of their clients. (19 December)

Baroness Boycott to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to promote a reduction in the consumption of meat. (19 December)

Lord Harris of Haringey to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to improve the safety and security of public venues, and whether they intend to introduce a Protect duty under the CONTEST strategy for countering terrorism. (19 December)

Baroness Parminter to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to improve the care offered to sufferers of eating disorders. (19 December)

Lord McConnell of Glenscorrodale to ask Her Majesty’s Government what priorities they will set for the review of children in care, as set out in the Conservative party manifesto. (19 December)

Lord Berkeley to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they intend to take in response to the judgment in Bates v Post Office [2019] EWHC 3408; and whether they intend to take any action against the directors responsible for the Horizon Accounting System. (19 December)

Lord Collins of Highbury to ask Her Majesty’s Government what consideration they have given to formulating their pledge at the Tokyo Nutrition for Growth 2020 summit, and what they are doing to build commitments from other countries. (19 December)

The Earl of Sandwich to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the impact of India’s Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019, passed on 11 December 2019, on UK citizens, and what representations they have made, if any, to the government of India as a result. (19 December)

Lord Addington to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the problems of and possible solutions for children in the school system with dyslexia and other neurodiverse conditions. (19 December)

Baroness McIntosh of Pickering to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to establish a trade standards commission in advance of negotiating trade deals. (19 December)

Baroness Randerson to ask Her Majesty’s Government how they intend to develop the transport system to ensure that it makes its full contribution to achieving net zero carbon emissions by the earliest possible date. (19 December)

Baroness Quin to ask Her Majesty’s Government what environmental considerations they take into account when formulating trade policy. (19 December)

Lord Dykes to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to look at the correlation between votes and seats in the UK general election system. (19 December)

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath to ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will publish a strategy to encourage volunteers to help reduce loneliness in care homes. (19 December)

Lord Boateng to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the progress of reconstruction efforts in the cyclone-affected areas of Mozambique, Malawi, and Zimbabwe. (19 December)

Lord Oates to ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they intend to publish a strategy setting out the United Kingdom’s approach to political and economic relations with Zimbabwe. (19 December)

The Lord Bishop of Rochester to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the progress of the ongoing reforms in the Probation Service. (19 December)

The Lord Bishop of Gloucester to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the current provision for children with a parent in custody. (19 December)

Lord Hodgson of Astley Abbotts to ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they plan to review the rules on drone strikes, including assistance to partners’ operations, in the light of the judgment of the German court in the Ali Jaber case in March 2019. (19 December)

Lord Farmer to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that children in the care system form the relationships they need. (19 December)

Lord Bruce of Bennachie to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have for the future of United Kingdom aid and development assistance. (19 December)

The Lord Bishop of Newcastle to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to support young people experiencing mental ill health. (19 December)

Lord Moynihan to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the provision of new grassroots football facilities and community football programmes around the country. (19 December)

Lord Greaves to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the role of towns in the improvement of public services and the development of local democracy. (19 December)

Lord Sharkey to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the possible merits of extending the regulatory perimeter for the financial services industry, in particular to include commercial lending and all activities related to mortgage administration. (19 December)

Lord Luce to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to ensure that those suffering from long-term health conditions, such as musculoskeletal and chronic pain, are (1) able, or (2) supported to return, to work. (19 December)

Baroness Cox to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of recent developments in Syria, including the effect of sanctions and doubts expressed regarding the veracity of the interpretation of the report of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, published in July 2018, regarding the alleged chemical attack in Douma on 7 April 2018. (19 December)

Lord Teverson to ask Her Majesty’s Government what action they plan to take to decarbonise heating and cooling in buildings in order to meet the UK’s fourth and fifth carbon budgets. (19 December)

Lord Naseby to ask Her Majesty’s Government, as leader of the Core Group at the United Nations Human Rights Council, what plans they have to review the United Kingdom’s continuing role beyond March 2020 and to bring to closure the resolution on Sri Lanka in the light of progress made in the reconciliation process of Sri Lanka. (19 December)

Lord Bird to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to invest in England’s public libraries, further to the report by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals and The Big Issue, Public Libraries: The Case for Support, published on 15 October 2019. (19 December)

Baroness Neville-Rolfe to ask Her Majesty’s Government whether they will set out their strategy for meeting future housing needs. (19 December)

Lord Trees to ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their current assessment of the strategy to control Bovine Tuberculosis, further to their Bovine Tuberculosis strategy review, published on 13 November 2018. (19 December)

Lord Randall of Uxbridge to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they plan to take to enhance biodiversity in British Overseas Territories. (19 December) [I]

Lord Crisp to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the potential for the United Kingdom to build on its existing regional and national strengths to become a global centre for health and health science. (19 December)

Lord Harries of Pentregarth to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the suitability and impact of moving the Department for International Development to become part of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. (19 December)

Lord Balfe to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the report of the independent Airline Insolvency Review, published on 9 May 2019, and what action they intend to take to implement the report’s conclusions. (19 December)

Lord Dubs to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking, in conjunction with other countries, to take in more refugees. (19 December)

Baroness Whitaker to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to implement the recommendations of the report by the House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee, Tackling inequalities faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, published on 5 April 2019. (19 December)

Lord Lexden to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the progress of partnership projects between maintained and independent schools. (19 December)

The Lord Bishop of Durham to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have for the future of the two-child limit on Universal Credit and Child Tax Credits. (19 December)

Viscount Waverley to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to establish a mechanism to inform parliamentarians when (1) the governments, or (2) the legislatures, of other countries (a) make statements on, (b) debate, or (c) ask questions about, their bilateral relations with the United Kingdom. (19 December)

Lord O’Shaughnessy to ask Her Majesty’s Government what progress they have made in evaluating innovative cancer treatments and making them available through the National Health Service. (19 December)

Lord Alderdice to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they intend to take to address shortages of services for young people provided by uniformed, and non-uniformed, organisations and voluntary, community, faith, and statutory youth services. (19 December)

Baroness Eaton to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they intend to take to reduce parental conflict and improve relationship stability. (19 December)

Lord German to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have for the rehabilitation of offenders and reform of the prison system. (19 December)

Lord Patel to ask Her Majesty’s Government what strategy they have for future workforce planning in the health and social care sector. (19 December)

Lord Alton of Liverpool to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the human rights situation of China’s Uighurs and other minorities, and when they last raised these matters with the government of China. (19 December)

Baroness Anelay of St Johns to ask Her Majesty’s Government what their current priorities are for work at the United Nations. (19 December)

Baroness Finlay of Llandaff to ask Her Majesty’s Government how many additional staff and beds will be provided to emergency care departments over the next 12 months. (19 December)

Baroness Hodgson of Abinger to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of whether there are adequate international protection mechanisms in place for people displaced by conflict and natural disasters. (19 December)

The Lord Bishop of St Albans to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the Church Action for Tax Justice report Tax for the Common Good, published in February 2019. (19 December)

Lord Storey to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the use of contract cheating companies and essay mills. (19 December)

Baroness D’Souza to ask Her Majesty’s Government what actions they are taking to support democracy in Taiwan. (19 December)

Lord Cormack to ask Her Majesty’s Government what plans they have to mark the year of cathedrals and pilgrimage in 2020. (19 December)

Lord Grocott to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the operation of the constitution of the United Kingdom. (19 December)

Lord Black of Brentwood to ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to support the United Kingdom music industry and its musicians, and in particular to ensure that musicians can continue to work in the European Union with their instruments after Brexit. (19 December) [I]

Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb to ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their policy on airport expansion. (19 December)

Lord Young of Cookham to ask Her Majesty's Government what progress they have made in making England smoke-free by 2030. (7 January)

Lord Burnett to ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have for the future of the Royal Marines. (9 January)

The Lord Bishop of Portsmouth to ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the progress reported in the Armed Forces Covenant annual report 2019, published on 20 December 2019, in securing fairness and respect for those who serve, or have served, in the armed forces, and their families. (13 January)