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  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: Restrictions on businesses and social gatherings

    In September 2020, the Government placed new restrictions on businesses selling food and drink, requiring many to close between 10pm and 5am. It also introduced further limits on the exemptions to its “rule of six” for social gatherings. This article looks at the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) (Amendment) (No. 5) Regulations 2020, which implemented these new measures.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: What does it mean for the Brexit transition period? (Part 1 of 2)

    This article looks at how the coronavirus outbreak is having an impact on the Brexit transition period. It explores how the pandemic has affected the timing and format of the UK-EU future relationship negotiations, and the ability of governments on both sides to focus on them. It also covers the effect on the UK’s implementation of the citizens’ rights and Northern Ireland provisions of the withdrawal agreement.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: Motion to annul rules on eviction court cases

    The Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 4) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020 make arrangements for how eviction court cases, which were temporarily suspended during the coronavirus pandemic, will proceed when the suspension is lifted on 21 September 2020. On 23 September 2020, the House of Lords is due to debate a motion to annul the rules.

  • House of Lords Library

    Current Affairs Digest

    Current Affairs Digest: Coronavirus (January 2022)

    Coronavirus has continued to spread rapidly over recent months as a result of the Omicron variant. The Government answered the latest surge with a major booster campaign in the UK. This article looks at questions about whether booster programmes will become a regular occurrence or whether we could be reaching the end of the pandemic.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: support for widows

    Over 165,000 people in the UK have died due to coronavirus or in cases where it was a contributing factor. Many of these people will have left behind partners. This In Focus looks at the support available to coronavirus widows and widowers in advance of a proposed future debate in the House of Lords.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: Extending the ban on residential evictions in England

    The Government has extended protections against the enforcement of residential evictions until at least 21 February 2021 because of the third national ‘lockdown’ in England. However, the measure has been criticised by Labour and others for not going far enough to prevent renters from losing their homes during the pandemic. The House of Lords will debate the regulations that extend the ban on 2 February 2021.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: business loans and the public finances

    The Government has provided over £200 billion of loans, guarantees and insurance cover to private sector firms during the coronavirus pandemic. These affect government borrowing and debt in different ways, depending on the design of the schemes. This article explores how each scheme is treated in the public finances and how much they are expected to cost.

  • House of Lords Library

    Research Briefing

    Commercial Rent (Coronavirus) Bill

    The bill would establish a system of binding arbitration to resolve outstanding commercial rent debt accrued during the coronavirus pandemic. This briefing considers: the background to the bill; what it would do; what happened during its passage through the House of Commons; and plans to debate it in the House of Lords.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: Temporary student number controls for higher education providers

    In June 2020, the Government announced that as part of its response to the Covid-19 pandemic it would be introducing temporary student number controls for higher education providers linked to the student finance system. This article focuses on the regulations that would provide for this change.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus testing: Could genome-editing tool CRISPR provide the answer?

    CRISPR (clustered regulatory interspaced short palindromic repeats) is a genome editing tool. Scientists continue to research the potential uses of CRISPR technology. The coronavirus pandemic has seen an increase in the demand for diagnostic testing. This article discusses what CRISPR is and its potential role in diagnostics.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus Bill: What happened in the House of Lords?

    This article summarises the scrutiny of the Coronavirus Act 2020 in the House of Lords. The Act was emergency legislation passed by Parliament in response to the coronavirus outbreak. The Act provided the Government with a range of powers to tackle the disease, including: the closure of schools and nurseries; powers to detain those suspected of having the virus; and restrictions on public gatherings.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus and abortion law

    In response to the coronavirus lockdown the Government temporarily amended the procedure for women to obtain drugs to have early medical abortions at home, rather than at a clinic or hospital. The article summarises the legislative changes and the debate surrounding early medical abortion.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: November lockdown for England

    On 4 November 2020, the House of Lords is due to debate regulations introducing a second ‘lockdown’ in England. The Prime Minister announced the measures in a televised address on 31 October 2020 and made a further statement in the House of Commons on 2 November 2020.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus lockdown: Costs and benefits

    The coronavirus lockdown was introduced to reduce the spread of the disease. However, it also gave rise to substantial costs, both to the economy and in areas such as health, education, domestic violence and inequality. This article considers one analysis of these costs and how they compare to the benefits of the lockdown. This is the subject of an oral question in the House of Lords on 28 July 2020.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    British Business Bank: Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans

    The British Business Bank operates a series of loan schemes to support companies during the pandemic, including the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). This article summarises the schemes and policy debates around them. It includes data on loan take-up up to 22 April. Coronavirus support through the British Business Bank is the subject of an oral question in the House of Lords on 30 April 2020.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: Amendments to Northern England lockdown regulations

    In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the Government has imposed local lockdowns in areas of the north of England. On 20 October 2020, the House of Lords will debate a statutory instrument which makes further amendments to the lockdown restrictions in the north east.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (Self-isolation) (England) Regulations 2020

    These regulations make it an offence not to self-isolate if instructed to by certain local authority and health officials. This would apply to those who have tested positive for coronavirus or who have been in close contact with someone else who has tested positive. The regulations came into force on 28 September 2020 and the House of Lords is due to consider them on 14 October 2020.

  • House of Lords Library

    In Focus

    Coronavirus: How have parliaments adapted?

    In early 2020, parliaments across the world reacted to the coronavirus pandemic. In response to a statement on potential changes to the running of House of Lords business in March, this article looks at how other parliaments have adapted to meet the needs of social distancing. It considers proxy voting, remote voting and virtual sittings.