Thirty Eighth Report Contents

Instruments of interest

Draft Armed Forces (Terms of Service) (Amendments Relating to Flexible Working) Regulations 2018

8.The terms of service for enlisted members of the regular Armed Forces are set out in regulations made under the Armed Forces Act 2006 (“the 2006 Act”). The Armed Forces (Flexible Working) Act 2018 amended the relevant provisions of the 2006 Act to include a new power to make regulations enabling part-time service, and to expand the existing power to restrict service to a particular area so as to enable service to be restricted geographically in other ways.

9.These draft Regulations, laid by the Ministry of Defence, are the first use of the amended power. They introduce two new types of flexible working:

Draft Code of Practice no. 15: Authorisation and supervision of master trusts

10.When the Occupational Pension Schemes (Master Trusts) Regulations 2018 (“the 2018 Regulations”) were debated, this Code was mentioned as an important part of the scheme.3 In issuing it, the Pensions Regulator (“the Regulator”) described the draft Code as representing a significant change in the way they regulate, as, for the first time, the Regulator will be directly authorising and supervising Master Trusts. The draft Code provides trustees with a central point of reference in relation to the law introduced by the 2018 Regulations and the Pension Schemes Act 2017, which also introduced a prohibition on operating a Master Trust scheme without authorisation by the Regulator. The draft Code provides detail of the process by which Master Trusts should apply for authorisation; the matters the Regulator will take into account in deciding whether they are satisfied that a Master Trust should be authorised at the point of application and throughout supervision; the legal requirements that apply once a scheme is authorised, notably in respect of significant and triggering events; and the procedure that will apply in deciding whether or not to grant authorisation.

Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (SI 2018/852)

11.These Regulations implement EU Directive 2016/2102 which aims to offer citizens, particularly those with a disability, better access to public services by ensuring the websites and mobile applications of public sector bodies are accessible. Many of the Directive’s requirements are already covered in whole, or in part, by the requirement of the Equality Act 2010 (in Great Britain) and Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (in Northern Ireland) for service-providers to make reasonable adjustments for people with disabilities. However, the Directive clarifies the standards that the websites have to meet (including definitions of the criteria: Perceivable, Operable, Understandable and Robust) and requires public sector bodies to provide an accessibility statement and keep it under regular review. Cabinet Office, through the Government Digital Service, also gains a new responsibility to monitor such sites for compliance and enforce requirements where necessary.

3 HL Deb, 18 July 2018, cols GC 101 -113.

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