Written Answers

135538 - Railways: East Midlands (Answered)

30th July 2018

Andrew Bridgen
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of increasing the number of stopping services at East Midlands Parkway to support the growth of (a) the East Midlands Airport and (b) the economy in that region; and if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of specifying an increase in the number of stopping services at that station in the upcoming tender for that franchise in order to better serve passengers using East Midlands Airport.

Joseph Johnson

The Government and rail industry are investing in the biggest improvement in rail travel since the Victorian era, including through the upgrade of the Midland Main Line. This programme will improve rail journeys for passengers using the Midland Main Line to travel into London St Pancras.

In developing the specification for the next East Midlands franchise it is important that airport passenger services are properly considered. We are considering options for future rail services to and from East Midlands Parkway and my Department has engaged with East Midlands Airport to understand their proposals. In our public consultation, held last summer, we asked stakeholders how the train service could be better at meeting the needs of passengers travelling to and from airports within the East Midlands.

The consultation closed on 11 October 2017. All options for rail services in the next franchise are subject to analysis of the potential benefits and the outcome of our consultation with stakeholders. Thus, no decisions have been made on rail services that will be specified for the next franchise. Any outcome will seek to secure the best value for money for the taxpayer and be in the best interests of rail passengers.

The next franchise is planned to start in August 2019. Invitations to Tender (ITT) are due to be issued to potential bidders later this year. The ITT will set out the minimum requirements and provide the baseline that we expect the next franchise to build on.

150675 - Charities: Bullying and Harassment (Answered)

30th July 2018

Andrew Bridgen
To ask the Minister for the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what safeguards are in place to protect volunteers employed in the charity sector from workplace bullying and harassment.

Tracey Crouch

The Government expects charities to take robust action against any bullying and harassment relating to employees or volunteers.

Charity employees have some protection in law under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 from detrimental treatment or victimisation from their employer if, in the public interest, they report concerns about serious wrongdoing at their charity to the Charity Commission, provided that the concerns they report meet the conditions in the Act for a ’protected disclosure’. There are other mechanisms for volunteers to report such concerns to the Charity Commission, although they are not covered by the Act.

Government, regulators and the charity sector are working together to reaffirm the importance of safeguarding as a governance priority for charities, and to agree and commit to actions jointly and individually to strengthen the safeguarding capability and capacity of charities working across the UK. The Charity Commission has already announced a suite of measures to help ensure charities learn the wider lessons from recent safeguarding cases revelations involving Oxfam and other charities, and to strengthen protection from harm for charity beneficiaries, employees and volunteers. This includes a review of its whistleblowing processes and guidance.

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Andrew holds regular surgeries throughout the constituency. To book an appointment telephone 01530 417736 or email andrew.bridgen.mp@parliament.uk

Forthcoming surgery dates

Friday 14th February 2020 - Kegworth
Kegworth Village Hall, Nottingham Roam,
Kegworth, Derby DE74 2FH
Friday 20th March 2020 - Coalville
Marlene Reid Centre, 85 Belvoir Road, Coalville, Leics LE67 3PH
Friday 24th April 2020 - Packington
Packington Memorial Hall, High Street, Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leics LE65 1WJ

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