Bishop Rachel raises concerns in the House of Lords

Published: Tuesday January 26, 2021

Bishop Rachel in House of LordsBishop Rachel has been active this week in the House of Lords, asking questions on how the Government were enabling local communities (including faith communities) to invest and rebuild their social capital. She also raised concerns around conditions in prisons, and the vaccine rollout for prisoners, as well as for teachers and early years staff.

First session:

Full question: Churches and other faith communities bring together a diversity of people across all ages and backgrounds and are thus a strong source of social capital, as well as spiritual capital, as we’ve seen during the pandemic. Could the Minister say what Her Majesty’s Government is doing both financially, and in other ways, to enable local communities including faith communities to invest and rebuild their social capital as we emerge from this pandemic?

Second session:

Full question: I wish to make two points and wish to draw attention to my interests listed in the register. The first is I’m really concerned about prisons. There are reports of the numbers of prisoners who’ve died, it’s about 71 at the moment, and the numbers of prison staff continue to rise alarmingly – those who’ve tested positive. There is great flux within a prison with staff coming and going; those being released from prison, those coming into prison. Will the Government consider prioritising vaccinating both prisoners and those who work in prisons?

And then the second is to add my voice to those who’ve called for teachers and early years staff to be prioritised. Schools are open and our dedicated teachers and early years staff need to be able to continue their work safely and not to be off sick if we’re to do the right thing by our children.

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