• In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Energy and climate change

    The Government has committed to reduce UK carbon emissions to net zero by 2050 and improve the security of the UK’s energy supply. It has said it intends to improve strategic planning in the UK’s electricity and gas infrastructure through the establishment of an independent future system operator. It has also said it will introduce measures intended to increase the use of hydrogen gas and carbon capture technology in the UK energy sector.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Transport

    The next Queen’s Speech, in which the Government will set out its legislative programme for the new parliamentary session, will be delivered on 10 May 2022. The speech is expected to include several measures concerning transport. These include: strengthening the regulation of payment of seafarers; continuing with the development of high speed rail; establishing a new rail body; regulating the sale of e-scooters; and providing for driverless cars.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Agriculture, the natural environment and animal welfare

    The 2019 Conservative Party manifesto included commitments to protect the natural environment and improve animal welfare. However, the Government has yet to fulfil its manifesto commitment to introduce legislation banning imports of hunting trophies. The Government has proposed changes to the ways in which natural landscapes are managed following the 2019 landscapes review. It has also said it is considering measures to permit greater use of some gene-edited organisms in agriculture.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Justice

    The Queen’s Speech is taking place on 10 May 2022. This will set out the Government’s legislative and policy programme for the new parliamentary session. This article provides a summary of legislative and policy proposals for justice, including a draft victims bill and parole system reform.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Constitution

    The Queen’s Speech is taking place on 10 May 2022. This will set out the Government’s legislative and policy programme for the new parliamentary session. This briefing provides a summary of legislative proposals concerning the constitution and other announcements that may be included in the speech.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Home affairs

    The Queen’s Speech is due to take place on 10 May 2022. The Government will use the speech to outline its plans for the new parliamentary session. This article considers what home affairs related announcements the Government might make, including plans for new legislation relating to counter-state threats and economic crime, and amendments to the Modern Slavery Act 2015.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Health and social care

    The next Queen’s Speech, in which the Government will set out its legislative programme for the new parliamentary session, will be delivered on 10 May 2022. The speech and accompanying briefing notes are expected to detail some health and social care-related initiatives. These could include a draft bill to reform the Mental Health Act 1983 and measures to ban conversion therapy in respect of a person’s sexual orientation.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Levelling up, housing and communities

    Ahead of the Queen’s Speech on 10 May 2022, this article examines the Government’s policy commitments on levelling up, housing and communities. This includes the measures found in the levelling up white paper, which aimed to reduce geographical inequalities across the UK. It also discusses the Government’s plans to bring forward legislation on social housing, the rental market and leaseholds.

  • In Focus

    Queen’s Speech 2022: Education

    Education measures in the 2022 Queen’s Speech are likely to be dominated by provisions outlined in the schools white paper, published in March 2022. In addition, proposals for new national standards on provision for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and legislation on school funding and the lifelong loan entitlement (LLE) are expected. A carry-over motion, agreed in April 2022, will also see the continuation of the passage of the Higher Education (Freedom of Speech) Bill.

  • In Focus

    How should gambling regulation change to reduce gambling harm?

    A House of Lords committee on the gambling industry has called for a series of regulatory reforms to reduce the harm caused by ‘problem gambling’. Since the committee’s report, the Government has launched a wide-ranging review of gambling oversight and is due to publish its conclusions shortly. In the meantime, aspects of gambling regulation continue to evolve.

  • In Focus

    Finance Bill Sub-Committee report: off-payroll working

    In April 2020, the House of Lords Economic Affairs Finance Bill Sub-Committee published the ‘Off-Payroll Working: Treating People Fairly’ report. This made several recommendations to the Government, including considering alternative options to the off-payroll working rules. The House of Lords is scheduled to consider the report and recent developments on 27 April 2022.

  • In Focus

    The use of Napier Barracks to house asylum seekers: regret motion

    Napier Barracks in Kent has been used since 2020 as contingency or temporary accommodation for those seeking asylum. In September 2021, an order was laid before Parliament extending the use of the site for such purposes for another five years. This move came despite significant criticism of facilities at the site, including a judgment from the High Court declaring them inadequate and the Home Office guilty of employing unlawful practices.