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Petitions

Monday 30 April 2012

Observations

Education

Free school transport from Perton (South Staffordshire)

The Petition of residents of the South Staffordshire constituency, and others,


Declares that the route to school for children walking from Perton to Codsall High School is dangerous as it involves a walk along an A-Road and that this needs to be addressed so that the children can get to school safely.


The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to ask Staffordshire County Council to take all possible steps to ensure that free home to school transport is provided for all children from Perton attending Codsall High School.


And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Gavin Williamson , Official Report, 1 March 2012; Vol. 541, c. 535.]

[P001010]


Observations from the Secretary of State for Education, received 27April 2012:

Local authorities have to make difficult decisions to ensure that we address the economic challenges facing the country, but those decisions must not be at the expense of the safety of children.

I note that the provision of free transport from Perton village to Codsall High School has been raised with the local authority on many occasions particularly since the village has developed and expanded. The part of the walking route that has been queried was last assessed in 2008. The decision was reviewed in the autumn of that year with the local authority satisfied that the route was available to walk.

I am working with local authorities, schools, young people and the transport sector to ensure that we have a transport system that provides parents with the confidence that their children can get to school or college in a safe, affordable and sustainable manner. This is a complex area and I will make more details available in due course.

On securing a place at a school, admission authorities must explain clearly whether or not school transport will be available and, if so, to which schools and at what cost (if any). Information about school travel and transport options available to parents must be made available by the local authority.

Health

Health and Social Care Bill

The Petition of residents of the United Kingdom,


Declares that the Petitioners are opposed to the Health and Social Care Bill.

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The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to withdraw the Health and Social Care Bill.


And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Tom Blenkinsop , Official Report, 7 March 2012; Vol. 541, c. 975.]

[P001012]


Observations from the Secretary of State for Health, received 27 April 2012:

The Government have noted the petition calling on it to withdraw the Health and Social Care Bill. The Bill has now received the Royal Assent, after 50 days of detailed parliamentary scrutiny in both Houses of Parliament. It becomes the Health and Social Care Act (2012).

The Act will:

Give more power to front-line doctors and nurses—Health professionals will be able to make key decisions about improving care for their patients;

Drive up quality—There will be a greater focus on improving standards of care;

Give patients more information and choice—Patients will get the information they need so they are able to choose the best hospital or doctor for them;

Reduce bureaucracy—two layers of management—Primary Care Trusts and Strategic Health Authorities—will be removed through the Act, saving £4.5 billion over the lifetime of this Parliament, with every penny being reinvested in patient care.

Improve co-ordination—There will be strong duties on the NHS to improve how it works with social care service and other local services;

Help promote good health—Local authorities will be able to pull together the work done by the NHS, social care, housing, environmental health, leisure and transport services to promote health and wellbeing in the communities they serve;

Give more power to local people—Power will shift from Whitehall to town hall—there will be at least one locally elected councillor and a representative of Healthwatch on every Health and Wellbeing Board, to influence and challenge commissioning decisions and promote integrated health and care.

The Government now look forward to working with NHS staff, patients, the public, and other organisations to implement the reforms.

The Petition of residents of Scunthorpe,


Declares that the Petitioners are opposed to the reforms to the NHS that will be brought about by the Health and Social Care Bill as the Petitioners believe that they will damage the quality of services provided by the NHS.


The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to reverse the reforms to the NHS brought about by the Health and Social Care Bill as soon as possible.


And the Petitioners remain, etc.—[Presented by Nic Dakin , Official Report, 27 March 2012; Vol. 542, c. 1441.]

[P001016]


Observations from the Secretary of State for Health, received 27 April 2012:

The Government have noted the petition suggesting that the Health and Social Care Bill will damage NHS services and should be reversed. The Government strongly disagree.

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Following 50 days of detailed parliamentary scrutiny in both Houses of Parliament, the Health and Social Care Bill has gained the Royal Assent. It becomes the Health and Social Care Act (2012). It will:

Give more power to front-line doctors and nurses Health professionals will be able to make key decisions about improving care for their patients;

Drive up quality There will be a greater focus on improving standards of care;

Give patients more information and choice Patients will get the information they need so they are able to choose the best hospital or doctor for them;

Reduce bureaucracy Two layers of management—Primary Care Trusts and Strategic Health Authorities—will be removed through the Act, saving £4.5 billion over the lifetime of this Parliament, with every penny being reinvested in patient care.

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Improve co-ordination There will be strong duties on the NHS to improve how it works with social care service and other local services;

Help promote good health —Local authorities will be able to pull together the work done by the NHS, social care, housing, environmental health, leisure and transport services to promote health and wellbeing in the communities they serve;

Give more power to local people Power will shift from Whitehall to town hall—there will be at least one locally elected councillor and a representative of Healthwatch on every Health and Wellbeing Board, to influence and challenge commissioning decisions and promote integrated health and care.

The Government now look forward to working with NHS staff, patients, the public, and other organisations to implement the reforms.