46.The Government have a number of Mutual Logistic Support Arrangements (MLSA) with other states, which support the Ministry of Defence’s objective of improving logistic support to the UK Armed Forces overseas, including supplies, ease of access and over-flight. This Agreement establishes such an arrangement with Japan. Reciprocal arrangements allow the UK to provide the supplies and services to the Self-Defense Forces of Japan necessary for exercises and training, United Nations Peacekeeping Operations, internationally coordinated peace and security operations and humanitarian relief, including operations to cope with large-scale disasters in the territory of either Party or a third country.
47.These changes include a new requirement that individuals applying for entry clearance under the Tier 2 General route, to work in the education, health and social care sectors, must provide a criminal record certificate from any country in which they have lived for 12 months or more in the previous ten years. This requirement will also apply to the partners of Tier 2 migrants. The Home Office states that this requirement already applies to Tier 1 applicants and their adult dependents and is part of a phased implementation. Following a review by the Migration Advisory Committee the salary threshold for experienced workers in Tier 2 is being increased to £30,000 for new applicants. This earnings provision does not apply to professions on the shortage list such as nurses, paramedics and maths teachers. Other provisions amend Tiers 4 and 5 and the reentry ban which is applied to overstayers.
48.These Regulations apply the change to the Earnings Taper rate announced in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement of November 2016. From 10 April 2017 the rate is to be reduced from 65% to 63% meaning that for every additional £1 earned, a claimant receiving Universal Credit will retain 37p, that is, 2p more than at present. This means that anyone claiming Universal Credit earning less than £26,000 will be better off, and a further 90,000 households, whose income would previously been too high to claim, might now become eligible.
49.The Department for Education (DfE) has laid these Regulations with an Explanatory Memorandum (EM) and Impact Assessment. DfE explains that the Regulations introduce an updated Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) statutory framework (“the Document”), which sets the standards that all early years providers must meet to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe.
50.Among the changes made is a new requirement in respect of Paediatric First Aid (PFA) qualifications: from 1 April 2017, all new entrants to the early years workforce with full and relevant level 2 or level 3 qualifications must also have either a full PFA or an emergency PFA certificate before they can be included in the required staff to child ratios in an early years setting. Newly qualified entrants who started work between 30 June 2016 and 2 April 2017 must have either a full PFA or an emergency PFA certificate by 2 July 2017. The current legal requirement in the Document is that at least one person who has a current PFA certificate must be on the premises at all times. DfE says that the aim is to embed PFA training into the qualification requirements for new entrants to the early years workforce and over time significantly increase the number of staff trained in PFA.
51.DfE refers to consultation which it carried out between 15 October and 10 December 2015. In the consultation document, DfE stated: “Following the tragic death in 2012 of Millie Thompson in a nursery class, the coroner for the case wrote to the Secretary of State stating that all nursery staff should have PFA training. The Government wants to take account of the coroner’s report …”. There were 377 consultation responses. 91% of respondents thought that the PFA requirements should be changed or strengthened; and 84% said that the Government should introduce a mandatory requirement for newly qualified early years staff, as these Regulations do. A summary of responses has been published.
52.The Riot Compensation Act 2016 (“the 2016 Act”) repeals and replaces the Riot (Damages) Act 1886 which was found to be cumbersome and ill-suited to modern circumstances when it was last used in 2011. These Regulations set out the procedure and basis for making claims under the 2016 Act, for the handling of claims and for decision-making by the claims authorities. The 2016 Act limits any claim to a maximum of £1 million and regulation 16 sets out circumstances in which an award may be reduced (along the lines of contributory negligence). The 2016 Act provides for temporary accommodation to be paid for, where someone’s home has been left uninhabitable by a riot, but regulation 15 limits this provision to 132 days. Following consultation the Regulations also amend section 2(3) of the Act to allow riot compensation claims to be made for business contents in qualifying motor vehicles and their trailers and other attachable devices. Although these Regulations come into force on 6 April 2017, they cannot be used until needed. Separate Regulations will be prepared to provide for the creation of a riot claims bureau under section 6 of the 2016 Act and held in readiness to be laid before Parliament in the event of widespread riots.