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Points of Order

Volume 719: debated on Wednesday 7 September 2022

On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. Yesterday, all Members of the House received an email from the Home Office stating that, in future, in “the majority of instances”, the Home Office will deal with our letters and correspondence

“by telephone to provide responses”


“Where this is not possible you will receive responses to multiple enquires in a single letter.”

First, I have grave concerns about that from a GDPR point of view—how can I respond to a constituent with a letter that mentions numerous constituents? Secondly, I have a concern about the Home Office not responding apart from orally, where we cannot then record what has been said on the telephone. Will you advise me, through your good offices, whether this is an appropriate response from the Home Office?

Further to that point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker. I hear the hon. Gentleman and will take this issue up with the Home Office. I know that it is very keen to get replies back, particularly on very pressing constituent issues and systems that have been under great strain. However, I very much understand that the quality and timeliness of departmental correspondence is of immense importance to us all in being able to carry out our jobs. I have already had conversations with the new Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster about how we can undertake continuous improvement on this issue. We take this very seriously and I will raise this matter.

I thank the Leader of the House for that very helpful response. I am sure that she will come back with further information, perhaps during one of the business statements.