Leader of the House
Andrew Lansley (Secretary of State, Health; South Cambridgeshire, Conservative)
Since my predecessor launched the Government’s e-petitions site in July 2011, the site has received more than 6.4 million signatures, shared across more than 16,000 petitions. A total of 11 e-petitions have passed the 100,000 signature threshold, making them eligible for debate. All 11 of these have been debated, or in the case of the west coast main line e-petition have been scheduled for debate in the new Monday afternoon allocation in Westminster Hall.
e-petitions have been an important part of increasing public understanding of Parliament. To improve engagement with petitioners, I am today announcing a new threshold of 10,000 signatures to trigger written Government responses to e-petitions, in addition to the existing threshold of 100,000 signatures that makes e-petitions eligible for debate.
Once an e-petition has passed 10,000 signatures, Departments will provide a response that will appear on the website and be e-mailed to all signatories who opted in to receive updates on that petition. Responses will include a statement of the Government’s policy on the issue, and details of any relevant parliamentary processes that are ongoing.
All e-petitions currently open for signature on the site, which have more than 10,000 signatures, will receive a response from Departments; we expect most of these to be published before the House returns from the conference recess. Responses to e-petitions that subsequently pass the 10,000 signature threshold will be published on a rolling basis on the relevant page of http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk.