Office for Students: Lords Industry and Regulators Committee report

In 2023, the House of Lords Industry and Regulators Committee published a report which criticised the Office for Students’ (OfS) approach to regulation. It said the regulator had a poor relationship with both students and providers, and that it lacked independence from the government. While the government and the regulator acknowledged some reforms were needed, they argued that the OfS’ actions were not driven by political pressures.

Office for Students: Lords Industry and Regulators Committee report

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and International Committee of the Red Cross (Status) Bill: HL Bill 68 of 2023–24

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and International Committee of the Red Cross (Status) Bill is a private member’s bill that originated in the House of Commons. It would allow the government to treat the two organisations in a similar way to international organisations of which the UK is a member. It has government and cross-party support. The bill is scheduled to have its second reading in the House of Lords on 17 May 2024.

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association and International Committee of the Red Cross (Status) Bill: HL Bill 68 of 2023–24

Foreign national offenders in UK prisons: Powers to deport

Under UK legislation, the government has a duty to consider deportation of foreign nationals convicted of an offence in the UK and sentenced to at least 12 months’ imprisonment. It can remove foreign national offenders before the end of their prison sentence through various schemes and through prisoner transfer agreements. The deportation of foreign national offenders is a government priority. During 2023, 3,926 foreign national offenders were returned.

Foreign national offenders in UK prisons: Powers to deport
  • Research Briefing

    Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill: HL Bill 50 of 2023–24

    The Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill would make long-term changes to the residential leasehold property system in England and Wales. The reforms are intended to improve homeownership for leaseholders by “empowering” them and “improving their consumer rights”. It is the second part of the government’s legislative package to deliver on its commitments on leasehold reform.

  • In Focus

    Digital exclusion in the UK: Communications and Digital Committee report

    In 2023, the House of Lords Communications and Digital Committee published a report on digital exclusion in which it called for the government to devise a new strategy and create a dedicated unit to address the issue. The committee argued the government’s approach lacked ambition. The government has said the issue is a priority and has established a dedicated ministerial group.

  • In Focus

    Quality of religious education in schools in England

    Religious education (RE) is a compulsory subject in English schools. However, Ofsted has said the subject is often an afterthought and that in many primary and secondary schools RE is of poor quality and is not fit for purpose. Organisations from the sector, such as the National Association of Teachers of Religious Education, have called for a national strategy for religious education.

  • Research Briefing

    Trade (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership) Bill [HL]: HL Bill 4 of 2023–24

    The Trade (Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership) Bill was announced as part of the King’s Speech in November 2023. It is a bill to enable the implementation of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. It will amend aspects of domestic legislation on technical trade barriers, government procurement and intellectual property to ensure the UK is compliant when the agreement comes into force.

  • In Focus

    King’s Speech 2023: Devolved affairs

    Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has said “strengthening the Union and delivering for all people and communities across the UK” is a “priority” for the UK government. Mr Sunak said his government’s approach to devolution was to “drive forward cross-government efforts towards delivering tangible improvements”. This briefing discusses some of the key issues in devolved affairs that may be addressed in the forthcoming parliamentary session.

  • In Focus

    Sovereigns’ first state opening speeches

    For centuries it has been custom for the monarch to deliver a speech at the state opening of Parliament. It is formally known as the ‘speech from the throne’. King Charles III will deliver his first speech as sovereign on 7 November 2023. This briefing discusses how the custom developed and looks at some of the themes in previous first state opening speeches.

  • In Focus

    Current state of the Organization for Security and Co-operation

    The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe is a multilateral institution, which deals with a wide range of security-related issues including conflict prevention, human rights and economic and environmental activities. It is described as a forum for political dialogue and joint action. Its decisions are not legally binding and are taken by consensus on a political basis. However, the war in Ukraine has raised questions over its future role.

  • In Focus

    Tackling violence against women and girls in the UK

    The UK government has labelled violence against women and girls as a national threat. It has committed to a range of actions to protect women and girls against harm in strategies focused on tackling violence against women and girls and domestic abuse. The government has also introduced measures through legislation such as the Domestic Abuse Act 2021. The House of Lords is scheduled to debate this issue on 29 June 2023.

  • In Focus

    Police standards and culture: Restoring public trust

    In recent years, there has been a series of high-profile cases of gross misconduct and illegal behaviour by police officers. The government and policing bodies have recognised this has led to a loss of public trust and confidence in the police. This article examines some of the key inquiries into police standards and culture and discusses some of the commitments made by politicians and the police to restore public trust.

  • In Focus

    The Barnett formula: How it operates and proposals for change

    The Barnett formula calculates the yearly change to the block grant; this is the largest of the grants provided to the devolved administrations by the UK government. The formula aims to give each nation the same pounds-per-person change in funding each year. However, criticisms about equity have been made regarding how the formula is calculated. Calls for reform have mainly focused on proposals to introduce a universal needs-based factor to the formula.

  • In Focus

    Commission on Young Lives: National plan for vulnerable young people

    The Commission on Young Lives was an independent group formed to design a new national system to prevent crisis in vulnerable young people and to boost their life chances and educational prospects. The commission published a report in November 2022 which made recommendations to government, local authorities, police and others to tackle the “deep-rooted” problems facing vulnerable youths. The commission’s “centrepiece recommendation” was for a “sure start plus for teenagers” network of intervention and support.

Total results (page 1 of 7)