Corruption, Student Loan Statistics, and Food Banks in the UK : New Official Publications 20.07.22

Westminster & the UK Government

Image of the title page of the Food Banks in the UK publication
© Parliamentary Copyright House of Commons 2022. Contains Parliamentary information licensed under the Open Parliament Licence v3.0

Food Banks in the UK – “The Trussell Trust, a charity working to end the need of food banks, has reported a 15% drop in the number of three-day emergency food parcels it distributed between 31 March 2021 and 1 April 2022, compared to the year before. This was still an increase of 14% compared to the year 2019-2020, before the pandemic. In 2021-22 it distributed 2.1 million food parcels in the UK.”

Scottish independence referendum: legal issues – “On 18 September 2014 Scotland voted in an independence referendum. It was said at the time that the process was beyond legal doubt. Not only had the Scottish and UK governments agreed to honour the outcome, but both Holyrood and Westminster had temporarily guaranteed (via a statutory device known as a Section 30 Order) that the Scottish Parliament would have the legislative competence for that historic event.

The “Edinburgh Agreement”, however, paused rather than resolved disagreements over the Scottish Parliament’s ability to legislate in this area. The Scottish Government maintained that a referendum of some sort was already within its devolved powers. Successive UK Governments, on the other hand, maintained that it was reserved to Westminster.

Even in 2014 this debate was not new, having first arisen during parliamentary debates around what became the Scotland Act 1998 (“the 1998 Act”). And having been paused between 2012 and 2014, the arguments resurfaced following the European Union referendum in June 2016. By 2020-21, the Scottish Government was indicating that the question might have to be referred to the Supreme Court.”

Student loan statistics – “Average loan debt and the overall scale of loans have increased over time as the Government has shifted funding for maintenance and teaching to loans. This has led to concerns about the burden of debt, high interest rates and the cost of loans to the taxpayer.”

Scottish Parliament & Government

Image of the title page of the Suicide and Self-Harm in Scotland publication
Contains information licenced under the Scottish Parliament Copyright Licence.

Suicide and Self-Harm in Scotland – “This briefing provides a brief overview of self-harm and suicide in Scotland. It presents some of the available data and evidence on the prevalence and rates of self-harm and suicide. It then provides information on Scottish Government policy and developments in these areas, ahead of the forthcoming publication of a new suicide prevention strategy and the development of a self-harm strategy for Scotland.”

The not proven verdict and related reforms: consultation analysis – “Scottish jury trials have some unique features, including a 15 person jury, simple majority for conviction and three possible verdicts of guilty, not guilty and not proven.

The Scottish Government’s 2021 Programme for Government committed to carrying out a public consultation on the three verdict system and whether the not proven verdict should be abolished as well as consideration of the corroboration rule.”

Pay and career progression experiences of women aged over 50 in Scotland: research – “This report presents the findings of a qualitative exploration of the pay and career experiences of women aged over 50 in Scotland. It also makes recommendations for improvements to workplace practices to better support this demographic. The work was commissioned by the Fair Work Convention.”

European Union

Image of the title page of the Genome-edited crops and 21st century food system challenges publication
© EPRS | European Parliamentary Research Service, 2021

Genome-edited crops and 21st century food system challenges – “Genome editing is the targeted alteration of a few DNA letters within the existing genetic blueprint of an organism. By far the most widely used genome-editing tool is CRISPR-Cas. CRISPR-Cas genome-editing technology can be applied in a number of different ways. The genetic changes that are introduced by means of the SDN1 and SDN2 types of CRISPR-Cas technology do not differ from changes that can occur naturally or result from conventional breeding. While CRISPR-Cas technology is highly accurate, off-targets can occur. However, molecular characterisation of the genetic changes, combined with selection, can prevent plants with undesired changes from being introduced onto the market. Views on this new technology differ widely, but there is a clear need to discuss which type of regulatory governance is warranted for genome-edited crops.”

Corruption – “Corruption remains a serious concern for EU citizens: 68% believe that corruption is still widespread in their country. In focus are national public institutions, where 74% of respondents increasingly believe that corruption is widespread, followed by political parties (58%) and local, regional and national politicians (55%). At the same time, Europeans are pessimistic about actions taken at national level to address corruption as a crime. Only a minority think measures against corruption are applied impartially and without ulterior motives (37%), that there are enough successful prosecutions to deter people from corrupt practices (34%), that their national government’s efforts to combat corruption are effective (31%) or that there is sufficient transparency and supervision of the financing of political parties in their country (31%).”

Businesses’ Attitudes towards Corruption – “Corruption remains a serious concern for EU citizens: more than a third of companies in the EU (34%) say that corruption is a problem when doing business (34%). Furthermore, an important majority of companies agree that in their country close links between business and politics leads to corruption (79%) and that favouritism and corruption hamper business competition (70%).”

Official Statistics

Homeworking in the UK – regional patterns: 2019 to 2022 – “Homeworking during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, focusing on changes and how they have altered the distribution of labour across the UK.”

How our spending has changed since the end of coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions – “Online shopping, hobbies and habits — the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has had a huge impact on where our money goes. As the cost-of-living increases, we look at what has happened recently to retail and the story behind our financial transactions.”

Trust in government, UK: 2022 “Trust in government and institutions, opinions of public services and attitudes toward political issues. UK-specific results. Experimental Statistics.”

If you’d like to know more about official publications just get in touch with us at the Maps, Official Publications and Statistics Unit Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm. Our enquiry desk is currently closed, however we can be contacted by email at

Categories: Library, Official Publications

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: