Previous Section Home Page

Mr. Nicholls : In the quarter ending March 1989, the average fall in unemployment, seasonally adjusted, in the United Kingdom was 39, 800 per month. Unemployment has now fallen over 32 consecutive months by 1,215,100 since July 1986, the longest and largest sustained fall since the war.

38. Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the number of people employed in a


Column 151

part-time capacity within the employment areas of South Yorkshire ; and what was the comparable position 10 years ago.

Mr. Lee : The available information on a comparable basis is from censuses of employment taken in September 1981 and September 1984. The table gives the available information for each of the travel-to-work areas in South Yorkshire.

More up-to-date estimates from the September 1987 census of employment will become available later this year.


|c|Employees in part-time employment<1> in the travel-to-work areas in|c|               

|c|South Yorkshire|c|                                                                   

Travel-to-work areas     |September 1981      |September 1984                           

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Barnsley                 |14,400              |13,700                                   

Doncaster                |17,300              |18,600                                   

Rotherham and Mexborough |17,500              |19,900                                   

Sheffield<2>             |53,400              |56,200                                   

<1> Excludes the self-employed and members of Her Majesty's forces; part-time workers   

are defined as those working for not more than 30 hours a week.                         

<2> Not wholly within South Yorkshire.                                                  

For the county, the September 1981 and September 1984 figures for employees in part-time employment were 100,000 and 105,800 respectively.

44. Mr. Richard Shepherd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what has been the average monthly fall in the number of unemployed in the west midlands during the last quarter for which figures are available ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nicholls : In the quarter ending March 1989, the average fall in unemployment, seasonally adjusted, in the west midlands was 6,300 per month. Unemployment in the west midlands has fallen by 67,800 or 27.2 per cent. over the last 12 months.

47. Mr. Alison : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the level of employment in Yorkshire and Humberside.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in the Yorkshire and Humberside region was 2,160,000. This represents an increase of 169, 000 or 8 per cent. since December 1983. The civilian work force in employment is the sum of employees in employment, the self-employed and participants in work-related Government training programmes.

52. Mr. Amess : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many young people aged 16 to 18 years were jobless in June 1983 and March 1989 ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nicholls : In March 1989 there were 2,457 people under 18 in the United Kingdom claiming unemployment-related benefits. There were an estimated 190,800 in June 1983.

The recent extension of the guaranteed offer of a YTS place to all those aged under 18 not in full-time education or employment means there is now no need for these young people to be unemployed. Consequently, only a few now remain entitled to unemployment-related benefits following the associated changes from September 1988 in the benefit regulations for people aged under 18.


Column 152

57. Mr. Pawsey : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the level of employment in the west midlands.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in the west midlands region was 2,471,000. This represents an increase of 298,000 or 14 per cent. since December 1983. The civilian work force in employment is the sum of employees in employment, self-employed and participants in work-related Government training programmes.

60. Mr. William Powell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what has been the fall in unemployment in the east midlands during the last 12 months for which figures are available ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nicholls : In the 12 months to March 1989 the level of unemployment, seasonally adjusted, in the east midlands fell by 34, 500 or 22.6 per cent. on a consistent basis.

61. Mr. Andrew MacKay : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the current level of unemployment.

Mr. Nicholls : In March 1989 unemployment, seasonally adjusted, in the United Kingdom was 1,918,100, the lowest for more than eight years on a consistent basis. Unemployment has now fallen for 32 months running, giving the longest and largest continuous fall since the war.

64. Mr. Quentin Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the level of employment in the east midlands.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in the east midlands region was 1,844,000. This represents an increase of 221,000 or 14 per cent. since December 1983. The civilian work force in employment is the sum of employees in employment, self-employed and participants in work-related Government training programmes.

67. Mr. Leigh : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the employment trends in the east midlands for 1989.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in the east midlands was 1,844,000. My Department does not produce forecasts or estimate trends.

69. Mr. Fishburn : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the level of long-term unemployment in London.

Mr. Nicholls : In January 1989 the number of unemployed claimants who had been unemployed for one year or more in Greater London was 98,786, a fall of 58,202 or 37.1 per cent. compared with two years ago. This comparison is affected slightly by the change in the coverage of the count from September 1988 due to the new benefit regulations affecting those aged under 18.

72. Miss Emma Nicholson : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what has been the rate of the fall in unemployment in the last 12 months in the south-west ; and if he will make a statement.


Column 153

Mr. Nicholls : In March 1989 the level of unemployment, seasonally adjusted, in the south-west was 104,600, a fall of 40,700 or 28 per cent. since March 1988 on a consistent basis.

81. Mr. Devlin : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the current level of employment in the north of England.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in the northern region was 1,297,000. This represents an increase of 128,000 or 11 per cent. since December 1983. The civilian work force in employment is the sum of employees in employment, the self-employed and participants in work-related Government training programmes.

89. Mr. Andrew Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the number of long-term unemployed in June 1987 and to date.

Mr. Nicholls : Unemployment figures by duration are calculated on a quarterly basis. In January 1989, the number of unemployed claimants in the United Kingdom who had been unemployed for one year or more was 821,419, compared with 1,238,288 in July 1987--a fall of 416,869 or 33.7 per cent. The comparison is slightly affected by seasonal influences as well as the change in the coverage of the count from September 1988 due to new benefit regulations affecting those young people aged under 18 years.

94. Mr. Yeo : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the latest total for the numbers of employed and self-employed people in East Anglia.

100. Mr. Patrick Thompson : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the level of employment in East Anglia.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in East Anglia was 1,023,000 of which 138,000 were self-employed. This represents an increase of 229,000 or 29 per cent. since December 1983. The civilian work force in employment is the sum of employees in employment, the self-employed and participants in work-related Government training programmes.

107. Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many people at present are unemployed in the west midlands, expressed as a percentage of the numbers unemployed in May 1979.

Mr. Nicholls : In March 1989 the level of unemployment, seasonally adjusted, in the west midlands was 180.8 per cent. of the level in May 1979 on a consistent basis.

113. Mr. Knapman : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is the increase in the number of self-employed in the west midlands since June 1987 ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, there were an estimated 248,000 self-employed in the west midlands region. This represents an increase of 39,000 or 19 per cent. since June 1987.

This self-employment estimate incorporates the latest LFS results, and will be subject to sampling error.


Column 154

120. Mr. Mans : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the current level of employment in the north-west.

Mr. Lee : In December 1988, the latest date for which figures are available, the civilian work force in employment in the north-west region was 2,676,000. This represents an increase of 101,000 or 4 per cent. since December 1983. The civilian work force in employment is the sum of employees in employment, the self-employed and participants in work-related Government training programmes.

115. Mr. French : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many young people aged 18 to 24 years were jobless in June 1983 and March 1989 ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nicholls : Unemployment figures by age are compiled on a quarterly basis. In January 1989 the number of unemployed claimants in the United Kingdom aged 18 to 24 years was 595,734, compared with 966,375 in July 1983--a fall of 370,632 or 38.4 per cent. The comparison is affected by seasonal influences and slightly by the change in the compilation of the count in March 1986 to remove over-recording.

Lost Working Days

122. Mr. Patnick : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many working days were lost through strike action in the first quarter of 1989 ; and what were the comparable figures for the previous 10 years.

Mr. Nicholls : For the latest three-month period for which data is available, ending February 1989, it is provisionally estimated that 135,000 working days were lost through stoppages of work due to industrial disputes. Figures for comparable periods in the previous 10 years, together with the latest figure, are shown in the table.


|c|Working days lost in the   

three months ending           

February|c|                   

Year      |Number             

------------------------------

1979      |5,933,000          

1980      |6,219,000          

1981      |778,000            

1982      |1,721,000          

1983      |1,184,000          

1984      |983,000            

1985      |6,235,000          

1986      |685,000            

1987      |1,914,000          

1988      |820,000            

1989      |135,000            

Health and Safety Executive

18. Mr. McAllion : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many professional and technological officers the Health and Safety Executive had in place on 1 April.

Mr. Nicholls : On 1 April 1989 the Health and Safety Executive employed 29.5 members of the Civil Service professional and technology group. Most are employed by the executive's electrical equipment and certification service.

23. Mr. Cohen : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will make a statement on the Health and Safety Executive's budget provision for the next three years.


Column 155

Mr. Nicholls : Gross provision for the Health and Safety Commission and Executive in the three years from 1 April last is £118.3 million, £125.9 million and £133.5 million. The provision allows for real growth in the executive's activities in all three years, including an increase in the number of inspectors, and of inspections. Details will be published shortly in the commission's plan of work for 1989-90 and beyond.

40. Mrs. Mahon : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many reviews and audits of the staffing and structure of the Health and Safety Executive have been carried out in the past two years.

Mr. Nicholls : Between March 1987 and April 1989 there were some 19 reviews which examined, among other things, questions of staffing and structure. These included 12 reviews of particular parts of the organisation conducted by the Executive's management review section ; four other internal reviews ; and three independent(externally led) reviews.

Staffing and other resources requirements for the executive are reviewed annually by the commission in preparation for the public expenditure planning round.

43. Mr. Wray : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many scientists have left the Health and Safety Executive in the last 12 months ; and how many were retirements and how many were resignations.

Mr. Nicholls : Between 1 April 1988 and 31 March 1989, a total of 22 scientists left the Health and Safety Executive. Of these, a total of six retired, 12 resigned, three transferred to other Government Departments and one died.

58. Mr. Ashton : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many additional staff the Health and Safety Executive required as a consequence of the passing of the lead regulations ; and how many staff the executive estimated it would require at the initial drafting stage.

Mr. Nicholls : None in both cases. The enforcement of the regulations was expected to be, and has been, integrated into normal inspection arrangements.

66. Mr. Wareing : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total staffing level of the Health and Safety Executive on 1 April 1975, 1979 and 1989.

Mr. Nicholls : On 1 August 1975, the first date for which figures are available, 2,937 permanent staff were employed in the Health and Safety Executive. On 1 April 1979 and 1989, the totals were 4,170 and 3,449 respectively.

68. Mr. Boyes : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many staff years were taken by the Health and Safety Executive's work on European Economic Community directives, legislation and initiatives in 1988 ; and how many are planned for 1989.

110. Mr. Boateng : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many staff years were taken by the Health and Safety Executive's work on European Economic Community directives, legislation and initiatives in 1988 ; and how many are planned for 1989.

Mr. Nicholls : The Health and Safety Executive's plans for 1989-90 allocate some 188 staff years specifically to


Column 156

work of international (mainly EC) origin : on legislation and other policy projects, development of safety standards, and notifications and assessments of substances. Information is not available on a comparable basis for the previous year. The estimate excludes senior management time and a significant proportion of staff time on other HSE functions which derives directly or indirectly from EC initiatives.

71. Mrs. Golding : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many staff were employed by the Health and Safety Executive's directorate of information and advice services in each of the last three years.

Mr. Nicholls : The numbers of staff employed in the Health and Safety Executive's directorate of information and advisory service at 1 April in each of the last three years were :


       |Number       

---------------------

1986   |106          

1987   |98.5         

1988   |101          

At 1 April 1989, a total of 102.5 staff were employed.

77. Mr. Denis Howell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many doctors left the Health and Safety Executive in the last 12 months ; and how many of them were retirements and how many were resignations.

Mr. Nicholls : Between 1 April 1988 and 31 March 1989, a total of nine doctors left the Health and Safety Executive. Of these, four retired, four resigned and one transferred to another Government Department.

83. Mr. Sean Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how often in the last five years cuts in the Health and Safety Executive's travel and subsistence budget have resulted in inspectors being prevented from making inspections on a planned basis.

Mr. Nicholls : The allocation of expenditure between travel and subsistence and other items of running cost is a matter for the Health and Safety Commission and Executive. The commission has only once in the last five years (in 1987-88) sought additional running cost provision during the year. Ministers agreed to this in full.

87. Mr. Buchan : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many scientists were employed by the Health and Safety Executive on 1 April 1975, 1979 and 1989.

96. Mr. McAvoy : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many scientists were employed by the Health and Safety Executive on 1 April 1975, 1979 and 1989.

Mr. Nicholls : On 1 August 1975, the earliest date for which figures are available, 259 scientists were employed in the Health and Safety Executive. On 1 April 1979 and 1989, the total were 355.5 and 300 respectively.

Mr. Clelland : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the targeted number of agricultural safety inspectors on 1 April 1975, 1979 and 1989 employed by the Health and Safety Executive.

Mr. Nicholls : Her Majesty's agricultural inspectorate joined the Health and Safety Executive from the Ministry


Column 157

of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food during 1976-77, with the field force in place in HSE by 1 March 1977. On that date, there were 191 inspectors in post in HSE. On 1 April 1979 and 1989, the totals were 190 and 165 respectively.

Mr. Turner : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what work the Health and Safety Executive's medical division is currently undertaking on Legionnaires' disease.

Mr. Nicholls : In addition to continuing its wide-ranging programme of activities on Legionnaire's disease, the Health and Safety Commission has asked the HSE to undertake a review of policy on this subject.

102. Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the targeted number of factory inspectors on 1 April 1975, 1979 and 1989 employed by the Health and Safety Executive.

Mr. Nicholls : On 1 July 1975, the earliest date for which figures are available, 557 factory inspectors were employed in the Health and Safety Executive. On 1 April 1979 and 1989, the totals were 742.5 and 604 respectively.

112. Mr. Jim Callaghan : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when the post of chief employment nursing adviser with the Health and Safety Executive will be filled.

Mr. Nicholls : This post has been advertised within the Health and Safety Executive and an appointment will be made as soon as a suitable candidate has been identified.

118. Mr. Allan Roberts : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many requests for advice and publications were received by the Health and Safety Executive's directorate of information and advice services in each of the last three years.

Mr. Nicholls : The number of requests for advice and publications received in each of the last three years by the public inquiry points of the Health and Safety Executive's directorate of information and advisory services was :


Column 158


                       |1986-87   |1987-88   |<1>1988-89           

-------------------------------------------------------------------

Telephone inquiries    |53,461    |54,116    |67,000               

                                                                   

Letters received       |34,205    |27,603    |36,000               

                                                                   

Prestel frame accesses |95,000    |98,510    |100,000              

                                                                   

Free leaflets issued   |3,898,147 |4,150,941 |5,200,000            

<1> Provisional.                                                   

                                                                  

123. Miss Lestor : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many specialists have left the Health and Safety Executive in the last 12 months ; and how many were retirements and how many were resignations.

Mr. Nicholls : Between 1 April 1988 and 31 March 1989, a total of 17 specialist inspectors left the Health and Safety Executive ; of these, five retired, nine resigned, and three transferred to other Government Departments.

135. Mr. Meale : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many mines inspectors and quarries inspectors the Health and Safety Executive had in place on 1 April.

Mr. Nicholls : On 1 April 1989 the Health and Safety Executive employed 58 mines inspectors and 11 quarries inspectors.

29. Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the targeted number of specialist inspectors employed by the Health and Safety Executive on 1 April 1975, 1979 and 1989.

Mr. Nicholls : On 1 July 1975, the earliest date for which figures are available, 198 specialist inspectors were employed in the Health and Safety Executive. On 1 April 1979 and 1989, the totals were 225 and 211 respectively.


 

  Home Page